Starting in 2012 Adafruit has stocked a handful of 3D printers, accessories, and supplies, and provide resources to help our community create better 3D printed project that integrate electronics.
We created this guide as a handy reference to help you compare and contrast the options we offer. While we no longer carry the MakerBot Adafruit Edition (the manufacturer has discontinued the Replicator 2 line), we included this model as a point of reference. We will be updating this guide as editions change and we add new options.
Have you considered building a 3D project around an Arduino or other microcontroller? How about printing a bracket to mount your Raspberry Pi to the back of your HD monitor? And don’t forget the countless LED projects that are possible when you are modeling your projects in 3D!
The Adafruit Learning System has dozens of great tools to get you well on your way to producing mechanisms, enclosures, interactive art, and design with your 3D printer.
Printrbot Simple Maker Kit – 2014 Model: Our most affordable printer. Printrbot Simple Kit offers an affordable introduction to 3D printing — one that performs better than other printers in its price bracket. Ideal for the mechanically-inclined, who are eager to learn more about how printing works. (Note: requires assembly.) (read more)
PrintrBot Simple Metal 3D Printer – Black – Assembled: Meet the sleek new Simple Metal. Now with a metal frame coated in our favorite color — “Adafruit black” — the Printrbot Simple Metal packs significant printing power into a small (and portable) printer. An affordable, assembled printer design that benefited from generations of Printrbots models, and offers primo features such as the auto level sensor, milled metal print bed, GT2 belts and pulleys, and z-axis coupler. (read more)
LulzBot TAZ 4 – Open source 3D Printer: The Tinkerer’s Dream Machine. The Lulzbot TAZ4 was designed with the designer, hacker, and innovator in mind — offering more printing materials options and larger print volume than most of their competitors. Want to modify your machine to print with 1.75mm plastic or get a dedicated printhead for lots of projects using flexible filament? No problem – you can do that — you have all of open source resources you need to upgrade and mod your machine. (read more)
Eink, E-paper, Think Ink – Collin shares six segments pondering the unusual low-power display technology that somehow still seems a bit sci-fi – http://adafruit.com/thinkink
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.