RE: [rp-ml] Comparison of Stratasys FDM Parts Quality Compared to Lower Cost FDM Type Systems

From: Greg Paulsen <>
Date: Tue May 08 2012 - 21:22:23 EEST

I just read about Stratasys' Mojo. It's a ~$10K FDM machine and only
runs the ABSplus ivory thermoplastic. Build size is 5x5x5" though.. The
only note on precision I have found was in the FAQs section: "If you can
design it, Mojo will print it precisely. Compared to prototypes produced
with consumer 3D printers, Mojo's ABSplus 3D-printed functional concept
models give you a higher level of precision."


Rapid Ready article:



Gregory M. Paulsen

Prototype Productions, Inc.

Office 703.858.0011 x314

Cell 540.974.1348 <>


From: [] On
Behalf Of Olaf Diegel
Sent: Monday, May 07, 2012 4:35 PM
To: Chathamres;
Subject: RE: [rp-ml] Comparison of Stratasys FDM Parts Quality Compared
to Lower Cost FDM Type Systems


Hi Doug,


Yes, I've run parts on pretty much all the systems (reprap, Makerbot,
BFB, Up, and Dimension).


In general, the parts from the repraps, and Makerbots, are borderline.
With a lot of tweaking you can get parts that are just useable but, if
you look at the machine sideways, or move it, you have to tweak all your
settings again. The machines are absolutely fantastic for educational
purposes, though.


The BFB, though originally based on a reprap, has evolved quite a bit,
and the quality of the mechanisms on the latest ones is good, so it
prints generally useable parts. But it does require a bit of tweaking on
the settings. The support material generation also needs a bit more
work, I think.


The Up, in my opinion, is probably currently the best of the low-end
desktop machines as it produces usually good parts, straight out of the


There seems to be certain geometries that these printers can struggle to
produce well. The Up, for example, struggles to produce the bottom
sections of sphere smoothly. You will find each of the printers has
certain shapes that it just doesnt like much...


In direct comparison with the more expensive FDM machines like the
Dimesnions, the parts are, quite simply, not as good in surface quality.
So it all depends on what level of prototyping you need. If it's just to
trial the vast majority of ideas, then probably the BFB or Up would do
the job fine. But, if it's to produce larger 'finished' prototypes then
one of the more expensive systems is the one to go with.


But... The Dimesnions costs about 12 to 15 times more to run than the
low-end machines. The material is typically close to US$1000/KG (once
you include build and support material, print platforms, solluble
support powder), compared to between $50~$100/Kg for the desktop


So for quick 'student' level prototypes, the low-end machines is what I
would recommend (we let out students run those free of charge). And,
with a bit of primer/sanding/painting you can get perfect parts.


But, is you want parts with a better surface finish straight off the
machine, then the high end ones are the ones to go for.







From: [] on behalf of
Chathamres []
Sent: Tuesday, 8 May 2012 3:42 a.m.
Subject: [rp-ml] Comparison of Stratasys FDM Parts Quality Compared to
Lower Cost FDM Type Systems

Has anyone compared the quality of parts made on a newer Stratasys FDM
compared to the same part made from any of the lower cost FDM systems
(e.g., RepRap)? If so, could you share the results with the list or us?






Received on Tue May 08 21:25:00 2012

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