Pricing is based on a series of factors, including the object’s volume, size, amount of raw material used, labor (mainly post-printing), and multiple other factors. These are the significant factors that can affect the price.
The cost of your 3D print is automatically calculated the moment you upload your 3D file to our site. The calculations are interactive and will change as you modify your personalized object and 3D printing options (if no 3D file is provided, a precise price quote cannot be established).
How your 3D Printing Dimensions Affect your 3D Printing Price
How much space does your 3D print take? The most crucial factor in calculating the cost of your 3D printing is the size of your object and how much space it will take in the machine. Voluminous things are more costly than compact objects because of the area and volume that is taken up in the Printing block. Make sure you respect the maximum 3D printing size.
The larger the object you wish to print means that the object will need to be placed in a printing block with a greater volume and machine. This also means that the printing cycles are longer, which will affect the cost of printing.
When you upload a design on our website, you must check if the size respects the maximum size of the machine's tray. Each machine has its size limitations, depending on the material you use. The maximum size also depends on the finishing you choose.
To check the maximum size limitation of each material, you can visit our Material Page.
3 Production Modes to control your 3D Printing Cost
At Sculpteo, we think that each object meets a specific need. Prototyping or tooling is often a more urgent need than miniatures, for example. That's why we created three different production modes: Standard, Express, and Economic. These production modes impact your 3D printing cost: the slower the production, the lower the price will be. Regardless of the production mode you choose, as soon as you upload your file on Sculpteo, you can see the shipping date of your package.
- Standard Mode
Standard Mode is the default production mode for your object. It signifies that your object will be produced according to the number of orders we have when you confirm your order. The delay is linked to the material you choose. You can find the delay for each material on the adequate material page.
- Express Mode
We designed the Express Mode to meet the demand of our clients in the shortest delay. The 3D printing cost for an Express Mode order is higher because we give your 3D print high priority and arrange our planning accordingly. This higher price is a guarantee that your order will be shipped on the announced date. This mode is only available for non-polished white plastic standard resolution. It is not available for other finishes or other materials. The object must be smaller than 290 mm x290 mm x 290 mm.
- Economic Mode
As we work with a space optimization system to ensure the best cost, we offer the opportunity for clients for whom a low price is more important than a fast delivery to decide their order will be produced whenever there is space in the machine. This option involves a reduction of up to 30% of the original 3D printing price in the standard printing mode and a production time usually on average around ten days.
This mode is available for white plastic with or without finishes. It is not available for other materials. The Economic Mode is available only for objects over 10€ or $10. Learn more about the production modes.
We have introduced a minimum price of 15$/€/£ for the production of a small object. To remove this handling fee, you can increase the quantity of parts in your order.
How your 3D Printing Material Affect the 3D Printing Price
Type of Material
When you have uploaded your design on Sculpteo, you can modify in real-time its size and material. Depending on the material you choose, the price can change from up to 100%! As plastic material is the most requested material, it is the least expensive.
Amount of Material
The amount of raw material used for your 3D printing affects the final price. Our online checking tools are available to help you find the best options for your 3D print to ensure that your object will be properly printed.
For plastic materials 3D printed with SLS technology, the amount of powder used can significantly modify the 3D printing cost. To reduce the price of your 3D printing object, you can hollow your model: less powder inside your object means less raw material used and a smaller 3D printing cost. To learn more about the hollowing process, check our hollowing tool page.
How our Finishes Affect the 3D Printing Cost
At Sculpteo, we offer several post processes for your 3D printing projects, and they add up the 3D printing price. Because a post-process treatment requires human action, the 3D printing cost is affected.
But remember that even if you choose a raw finish, we still guarantee the best 3D printing quality.
A technician does the polishing process to give your object a better look by reducing friction. For Plastic and Alumide material, we use SLS technology (Selective Laser Sintering) to create your parts. Due to the raw powder material, a small number of powder particles don't melt during the laser passes and create a rough and porous surface.
At Sculpteo, the technique used to polish your 3D printed parts involves using small stones in a rotating/vibrating cauldron - as the stones brush up against the object, minor imperfections in the surface are smoothed. Learn more about the polishing process.
Exclusively at Sculpteo, you can give your 3D printed object an end-use aspect with our Chemical Smoothing treatment. Our technicians can bring a level of smoothing to provide you with the best quality for your 3D printed parts. Thanks to a physicochemical reaction, we can approach the surface look of injection molded parts. It is an exclusive patent-pending process to smooth laser-sintered plastics.
To obtain the best finish for your 3D printed objects, we offer a dyeing option available in many colors to give your 3D printed plastic parts a better look.
Dyeing 3D printed plastic colors very deeply. This guarantees vibrant colors and makes it possible to avoid peeling or scratching, which can occur with paintwork. The lack of excess thickness prevents loss of detail, thus conforming most closely to your original design. Dyeing can reach all surfaces of the part, including the most inaccessible recesses, resulting in a very uniform finish.
As a complementary option, it is possible to paint your 3D-printed object. Our technicians use very durable spray paint to give your object a finished aspect.
Paint is very durable and retains the same shade without losing intensity. Since we use cellulose paint, there is no risk of staining clothing or your skin once it dries. It is, therefore, suitable for all uses.
Painting is available in a matte or glossy finish. Our painting option is more expensive than our dyeing finish, as it takes more time and human work.