The 10 Best 3D Printing Pens You'll Ever Want to Have
With world becoming ever so small, there is very little difficulty in finding the right talent for your creative project-however, big or small your ambitions are! Art will always get a lot of attention and with the advent of technology, and how easily its accessible, you no longer have to limit your creative outlets to traditional means like a canvas for that picturesque scenery, a piece of paper for that jaw dropping sketch or even a traditional pen for that quick doodle over a cup of coffee.
One such advancement that caught my eye is the rapid growth of 3D printing world in creative arts. Ever since using it for a uni art project, I have started creating my own little miniature versions of all the 7 wonders of the world and must admit I absolutely love it. There is a mystique about holding a 3 Dimensional creation, all the merrier when it's your own. With my love for art that resulted in pictures, drawings and countless spoilt 3D plastic leads, one fine morning I chose to put the very best tools that led to my hundreds of hours of frustration, elation, ecstasy of creativity into an article that many aspiring talented artists can refer to, into this blog post. Not a prose or a poetry but a simple list post that can save lot of wasted effort.
Without further adieu, lets jump straight into the best available 3d Printing Pens that I can vouch for.
Quick Comparison Table & Our Pick
This as you would expect from us is an EPIC post so grab a coffee before you start and see how we cut through every product and review it with precision. IF YOU ARE SHORT ON TIME and just need to know the results of our reviews , CHECK THE RESULTS TABLE BELOW!
SPEED / PRINT TYPE
800mAh Lithium Ion Battery, microUSB cable
Cool Ink (Photo polymer)
5 print types, adjustable temperature
PLA, ABS, Flex
PLA, ABS, Flex
6 print types, adjustable temperature, 2 speeds
Economy Top Seller - MYNT3D Professional Printing 3D Pen
PLA, ABS, metal filaments
3 Speeds, adjustable temperature
Other Great Recommendations
2 Speeds, adjustable temperature
PLA (preferred), ABS, metal filaments, Flex
2 Speeds, adjustable temperature
3 Speeds, 2 temperatures
PLA, PCL, ABS
2 speeds, 2 temperatures
3 speeds, adjustable temperature
2 speeds, adjustable temperature
2 speeds, adjustable temperature
An Introduction to 3D Printing
3D printing is the modern way of manufacturing tailored materials. Contrary to the breakdown and assembly method of traditional manufacturing, 3D printing is completely different. It uses an additive method.
The typical way of manufacturing refers to cutting out material like metal, wood, plastic and such, then assembling them together to produce a certain product. 3D printing is a modern method that allows you to make a complex design and create it as a whole product instead of an assembled piece of project. It is more efficient and it suits the preference of the creator.
Different Uses of 3D Printing Pens
Some would just buy a 3D printing pen for the fun of it. Honestly, though, it is pretty fun to own one. The very first time you use it, it feels just as intriguing as in every moment that you do use it. The idea of writing on air is a really wonderful thought and the very idea of it is just so appealing that 3D printing pens are gaining a lot of attention.
Creative Toy for Kids
One other great use for 3D printing pens is for the kids. This is increasingly popular because the 3D printing pen allows kids to explore much of their imagination by practically drawing anything they like and how they like it. Drawing on paper may be fun and entertaining but in the end, the appeal of using 3D printing pen is drawing on air. In fact, kids love the idea of creating their own toys in the process even if the item they create isn’t as ‘pretty’ as they’d like it to be.
This not only enhances your child’s creativity but also tickles the mind to be more imaginative and explore a person’s ability of creation. This is even a highly educational toy that encourages children of younger ages to learn.
Plastic Filling for Other Plastic Goods
In the first place, a 3D printing pen was used to fill in some of the missing detail a 3D printer missed to print out. There are instances where intricate details were missed out during the design process and a 3D printing pen can make up the difference. It produces fine prints of plastic making it a great way for owners to supplement what was lacking on their 3D printed projects.
When our kids’ toys get broken or our plastic pipes happened to crack under pressure or the tiny broken corners giving way to sharp and dangerous edges, a 3D printing pen becomes really handy. When we need a tight fix like a leaking pipe, we can simply seal it in using a 3D printing pen. Remember that the plastic filaments become so hard once they cool-off. 3D printing pens are really great fixes for minor damages that we encounter at home on a daily basis.
The Best 3D Printing Pens For The Money (Inc. Buyers Guide)
Our Pick - CreoPop 3D Printer Pen
Topping our list is the Creopop. Having a price at least 50$ more than most of the brands we have on our list, we have every reason why it’s worth all the dollar bills for. The best aspect about this 3D printing pen is the fact that this is different from most 3D printers. It uses a cool ink or photopolymer rather than a typical plastic filament. The benefit you can get from using a cool ink is that it can print in different directions rather than in straight lines that most 3D printer pens do. This is one reason why it’s very popular. Moreover, the cool ink doesn’t need high heat for it to print out. It’s already in its soft plastic form so you’re guaranteed that your 3D printer pen is safe to use even for your kids.
What we do love about this is that since it uses cool ink, they sell refills of different types like metallic refills, elastic ink, glow-in-the-dark ink, color-changing--turns into different colors when exposed to different temperatures--magnetic ink, and body paint ink. This 3D printing pen has other safety features like the silicone tip. It’s not the usual metal tip that can hurt you once you accidentally touch it. Creopop comes with 4 tips with different thickness. This way, you can interchange the tips to make more intricate designs of your choice using this great 3D printing pen.
It has other printing features too like the multiple options for printing where you can choose whether the plastic is slow to harden to quick to harden. What’s also great is that it has LED light allowing you to have good lighting while you draw. The light is right on the tip of the pen so you’re guaranteed that it won’t be disturbing your eyes at all while you print.
This is wireless which makes it an awesome printing pen because there wouldn’t be any wire disturbing you while you draw. The Creopop may be wireless but the battery life doesn’t last that long either since it only has 800 mAh. But don’t worry. It is rechargeable via USB. Unfortunately, the cord is too short. You may have to plug it on your laptop or be really close to a socket to have a nonstop printing duty.
There are so many things to love about this 3D printer pen. It’s absolutely gorgeous -- the design is flawless and it looks modern and really expensive looking with a sleek metal curve accented with smooth acrylic. It’s cool to the touch and barely overheats. The LED light is very convenient while printing. We love that it’s safe and very easy to use. It is also smooth to the touch and very portable. The ink refills can be bought from the Creopop website or even from Amazon and other resellers.
We also love that since it doesn’t heat and melt plastic filaments, it’s not prone to jamming. It’s also not prone to color mixing especially when you feed your pen with a different color filament. You can just pop off the refill without any hassle of removing the filament and replace it with another color.
The only problem we encounter is the charging -- the cord is too short so we use a different USB cord to plug it in while using. It’s a bit noisy and the smell of the cool ink is quite funky. The pen is only great for kids with bigger hands because it’s a bit stubby. The ink is so easy to use but you’ll run out of it quickly. And even if you do get a refill from any online seller, they just sell the inks by three’s and thus can become really expensive in the long run.
Since the cool ink is made of photopolymer, it softens when exposed to ultraviolet rays. So, it can actually soften up when you leave it outside under the sun for too long. This doesn’t really happen to other materials used by other 3D printer pens because they soften up at a much higher temperature.
This is a real high-end 3D printing pen. Made with great quality, this is surely an item that is well desired by many despite the initial cost. It offers the best quality over everything from safety to ease-of-use and great control. There are many things to love about this 3D printing pen and for that reason, this is our top pick for the best 3D printing pen.
Mid-Range Top Seller – 3Doodler Create 3D Pen
This wouldn’t be labeled as the World’s Best Selling 3D Printing Pen for no reason at all. Actually, the 3Doodler is the first 3D printing pen to ever be sold as a consumer product. One great aspect about this mid-range priced object is the ease of use. It’s a direct-to-the-point 3D Printing Pen that anyone can use it with no hassle.
The design is very simple, lightweight and easy to move around. Drawing with it is not a problem at all since it is super easy to use and manipulate. Another noticeable feature or design of the 3Doodler is that it is quite slim. It is closer to what a real pen looks like than any of the 3D printer pens on our list. Actually, it looks a lot like a marker.
The 3Doodler uses a wide array of plastic filaments. It can use PLA, ABS, and Flex. These are very cheap and can easily find in the market. You can easily find different colors that you like as well. Refills are one of the biggest expenses you’re going to incur once you purchase a 3D printing pen. But with the 3Doodler Create, you can use any filament you like and still produce a great 3D printed project.
The 3Doodler has interchangeable nozzles to control the thickness of the plastic being extruded out of the pen. There are 6 nozzles to choose from and they have different thickness or sizes of plastic filaments. With that, you can make more intricate details of your desired 3D project. What you’ll like is that the package of this 3D printing set comes with a doodle pad, the charging set, and 50 strands of plastic which includes matte, glossy, clear, glow, flexy, and glittered plastic filaments.
What’s great about the 3Doodler is that it is very easy-to-use. It feels light on the hands and it fits in kids’ hands as well. Since this is the slimmest 3D printing pen in the market, anyone can use it. Although it can fit children’s hands, adult supervision is still a big must. You need to keep track of your children in using the 3Doodler. We like that the cord is pretty thin as well. This makes it easier for us to use the 3Doodler. The cord is long and flexible making you feel like as if it’s wireless. Before using the pen, you may need to wait for about 60 to 90 seconds for the heating element to reach the proper temperature to start melting the plastic filament.
One of the downsides of the 3Doodler is changing the nozzle. You need to turn it off first, let the nozzle cool down--because the nozzle tip is made of metal. The metal tip can get too hot and you need to let it cool down and then that’s the time you can change the nozzle. The smell of burning plastic is also pretty bothersome especially if you keep the 3Doodler on for too long. We suggest that you let it cool down from time to time. The pen is also pretty slim so you can really feel the heat touching your palm and fingers.
The cord connecting this pen to the power adapter easily detaches from the 3Doodler. It’s not like its USB connected but the tiny jack can come off the pen easily. This becomes a concern because you may end up accidentally pulling out the power source and it may mean a lasting problem on the 3D printing pen.
There are pros and cons regarding the 3Doodler but it is still an awesome 3D printer pen. This is, of course, the very first 3D printing pen that was ever released in the market. It is very direct to the point making it an awesome item of choice and the price is absolutely perfect for this wonderful easy-to-draw 3D pen.
Economy Top Seller – MYNT3D Professional Printing 3D Pen
Bring your imagination out of the paper. That’s literally what you will get from your MYNT3D printing pen. This is one of the slimmest and smallest 3D printing pens on the market. It’s sleek and neat and easily fits into your hands like a marker. It has a lot of lovable factors and the design is one of them. The pen is fairly light and easy to use too.
It is a great item for dimensional sculpting and it is especially fitting for adults. You can easily use it better to create various design concepts and bring it out of the paper. The good thing about this is that it has different speeds of expelling the plastic from the extruder. You can set the speed to fast so that you can fill in spaces without the rest of your sculpture cooling and hardening. You can also set it slower for better detail-oriented designs. Details are made better with the slower speed since it can create a more intricate design.
The MYNT3D is very flexible too. It is practically compatible with any plastic. Most filaments are either made of ABS or PLA but if there are any wood or bronze infused filaments, then the MYNT3D can still use it to print out a model of your desire. Another awesome feature about this is that it has LED screen display that shows you the temperature and the type of plastic filament you’re using. You can set the temperature to melt the filament properly and prevent it from jamming your printing pen. And with that, MYNT3D has a recommended temperature for each filament.
ABS melts best at 210 degrees Celsius while PLA melts at 175 degrees. The minimum temperature of the printing pen is about 130 degree and goes all the way up to 240 degrees. For as long as it is a filament measuring 1.75 mm and it melts between the said temperatures, the MYNT3D will be able to handle it. And with the adjustable temperatures, it becomes more ideal. This great 3D printing pen uses a 2A cable with a USB end. You can easily connect it to your laptop or a power bank for better portability. It is, however, not battery powered.
It is a very flexible printing pen, relatively light and very easy to use. It is practically compatible with almost anything. The pen is slim and fits almost all hands making it very easy to draw with. Mobility is barely limited because the pen itself is very light and movable. The design is also thought of because it lets you maneuver around very easily.
Unfortunately, it’s not always smooth sailing from there. Though they do have recommended temperatures for a type of plastic filament, you may need to adjust the temperatures to a higher level. The filaments easily jam up the pen making it a hassle to remove and unjam the printing pen.
One other downside to having this 3D printing pen is the nozzle. Though the nozzle is said to be replaceable, it looks like the other nozzle is of the same size as well. It’s pretty disappointing because you’d think that a detachable nozzle would mean you can change it to a different size but clearly, that’s not the case. Also, the nozzle heats up which can be a danger-hazard for kids. And, another thing, it’s really noisy. What we mean is that it has a high frequency sound that we find really irritating.
This sure is a great 3D printing pen that delivers great products--but you’ll have to really understand it first before you get to reap the good fruits of your labor. It does take time to learn about getting around the issues like filaments jamming up. This has great features for a low price. So, it’s definitely worth buying this 3D printing pen.
Other Great Recommendations
Scribbler 3D Pen V3
Designed to fit in your hands to perfection, this is a wonderful Scribbler 3D printing pen that will really make your paper to reality dreams come true. 3D printing pens are really amazing, especially as a treat for yourself. What’s great about this particular 3D printing pen is the ergonomic grip and design -- very light and easy to use. It jugs the contours of your hand the way you would when holding a pen. It may be a bit fat or stubby but it does work really well on our hands and fingers.
The pen can melt different types of plastic filaments like ABS, PLA, Flex, Wood-infused, metal-infused filaments like bronze and copper. But keep in mind that this 3D printing pen works best with PLA filaments. PLA barely has any smell and it is much gentler than other types of plastic. The fumes are non-toxic as well.
The Scribbler 3D pen comes with a big OLED screen display where you to monitor the status of your 3D printing pen. It displays the temperature, feed settings, and the type of filament that is being fed to the 3D printing pen.
Whether you’re an expert or just a hobbyist who wants to try out printing a sculpture of your own, this is a great item to use. It does have an unclogging mechanism that prevents the filaments from ever clogging the printing pen. It has an auto-cleaning function that helps prevent from being jammed and it cleans up the pen before you insert a new filament so that the color won’t get mixed up.
In addition to that, it has a speed control that you can easily reach. It makes it easy to use especially for kids. It also has a temperature adjustment that you can set which ranges from 140 to 240 degrees Celsius. That’s pretty hot.
The cleaning function is a great feature. It makes sure that it unclogs the extruder and the pen so that it would be easier to use. You can replace the filament without having to worry much about the colors mixing or the end jamming up the pen. We love that it is lightweight. You can feel the pen getting warm but it doesn’t really heat up to the point that it’s uncomfortable. It also comes with an easy quick-cleaning function and great speed adjustments. It automatically shuts off when it’s not used for 90 seconds which is a good safety feature.
Unfortunately, we find the pen too fat and stubby. Our hands can easily get weary from holding it. Even though it is quite lightweight, the fact that it’s bulky make it seem like the pen is a little bit heavy on the hands because it causes strain on the fingers. The cleaning function is great at times and sometimes it just really sucks too.
This is a really great pen. At its range, we believe the price is just right as well. It has a lot of good features that are not commonly found in other 3D printing pens. This 3D printing pen overall is great especially the safety features. But because of the fact that it’s pretty clunky and too big for children’s hands, we don’t find it fit to place under the 3D printer for kids category.
Manve 3D Printing Pen
This is yet another awesome item on our list. It’s thin and offers a great rubber grip and a quick boot-up since you’ll only have to wait for 30 seconds before you can start printing your desired design. The Manve 3D Printing Pen is made slimmer so that it will be easily accommodated by smaller hands--especially for kids.
The design is simple yet very functional and easy to set-up. This makes it a great way for you to immediately start using the pen right off the box. What’s great about this is that it also comes with a small OLED display screen that indicates the temperature--in celsius--and the type of film that the pen is using. You can switch to display whichever you prefer to check out the status of your pen. You can also adjust the settings of your pen’s temperature with ease. There is a temperature setting right on the display screen which ranges from 90 to 185 degrees Celsius. It also has a speed control where you can choose from three speeds of fast, slow or medium to suit your printing needs.
It has great safety features where it automatically shuts off when it is idle for 6 minutes. The pen uses either ABS or PLA filaments for printing. And as you buy this product, it already comes with a single color 7-meter strand of PLA filament. There are two buttons that let you load and unload your filament which allows you to easily change the filament that you are using. It does come with a removable nozzle too. The heating element is actually in the nozzle itself, so if there are any problems regarding the heat of your 3D printing pen, you can just change the nozzle.
You may also like the fact that you can charge this using your phone charger because it uses a USB port rather than the typical charging adapter port. This makes it very convenient especially if you happen to forget the charger when you go somewhere.
We like that it has a simple design and very easy use. This Manve 3D printing pen is child-friendly because it easily fits into smaller hands. The rubber grip also makes it easier to hold on to the pen as well. This is overall cool to the touch. You can barely feel any heat emanating from the pen when holding it.
The problem mainly falls on the nozzle. The heating element is directly latched onto the nozzle and it becomes a hazard since it can get pretty hot. The nozzle also jams up easily because the extruder is right at the tip. Anyway, the nozzle can be replaced if there is any damage incurred. Cleaning up a jam becomes a problem too. There is not space for clean up. Another problem is that the pen reaches only a maximum temperature of 185 degrees Celsius which is not enough to fully melt a plastic filament well. So there are instances where the plastic barely even melted as it leaves out the extruder.
The Manve 3D printing pen is great and it falls on the lower average of a mid-range price. There are awesome features in this smaller and less expensive 3D printing pen. And with all the good things that you’ll ever need from a typical 3D printing pen, the Manve is a good pick.
Kimitech 3D Pen Child Safe
At first look, this pen looks very sleek. Known as one of the best sellers for 3D Printing pens for kids on Amazon, there are tons of reasons why you should consider buying this Kimitech 3D printing pen for children.
It only uses the safest non-toxic plastic filaments in the market, namely PLA and PCL. Aside from that, it can also accommodate ABS plastic filament. They are easier to melt as well at a lower temperature. And for that reason, the KimiTech 3D pen has a maximum temperature of 185 degrees Celsius. It is hot enough to melt a hard PLA plastic. Its lowest heating temperature is 85 degrees Celsius.
The Kimitech has an OLED screen display so that you can monitor the temperature you’re using. The material uses an aircraft grade aluminum shell making it really light on the hands. That said, this is a great 3D printing pen for kids. It doesn’t really make the hand feel uncomfortable at all even after using it for a long time. Despite the metal shape, the heat doesn’t completely translate to a strong hot temperature on the hand; just a comfortable warm feeling.
The pen has auto-shutoff mode when it is left unused for a long period of time. It even comes with a discharge button and a retreat feed button. It is easy to understand and operate that is why it’s really ideal for kids. Keeping it plugged in is also not much of a big problem because you can easily find a good power source for it. This pen has a UL-USB cable, so you can plug it in your laptop, a power bank or any typical USB charger for that matter.
The item uses high-grade materials with a gentle touch feel that fits most children. It’s very light and easy to use and it doesn’t produce those nasty funky smell or does it make an annoying sound when it’s turned on.
Because the temperature is pretty low, there are times that it only spews out softened filaments instead of a malleable piece of melted plastic that you can easily form to perfection. It does have a short boot-up but you may want to wait for the pen to really get the right temperature before you start using it which requires another 30 seconds.
The Kimitech 3D printing pen is light, easy-to-use, and fits the hands perfectly. It offers a great grip for the hand of the kids. This is a great 3D printing pen that you’d love to give your child this year’s great holiday.
TipEye Smart 3D Pen for Kids
From kids to adults, hobbyists to professionals, this is a 3D printing pen that will surely fit your budget. Made to accommodate the typical ABS and PLA filaments, it’s easy to find the right one to use with the TipEye Smart 3D printing pen. This then adds to the smaller cost of owning and maintaining this 3D printer pen for kids.
With regard to children, this is also made for safety. The outer shell is made with acrylic and aircraft grade aluminum. The acrylic keeps the temperature of the pen regulated for the hands not to feel hot. In fact, it is very comfortable. It also offers a good grip. The pen has gentle curving contours that were created to fit children’s hands well. And that also goes for adults too. It is strictly picky in using PLA since it is the safest type of plastic that kids can use. That’s because it is non-toxic, biodegradable and eco-friendly.
This 3D printing pen does have a higher temperature setting – from 170 degrees to a maximum of 230 degrees Celsius. It comes with a temperature and speed adjustment allowing you to choose the best printing speed of preference, as well as the temperature by which you’re going to use. All these are displayed and seen on its OLED screen display.
You can manually clean up any jam in the pen because the nozzle is removable. The nozzle also prevents the heat from penetrating the outside of the pen thus making it a super comfortable pen to use without having to worry about your kids ever getting burned. The heating element is also found on the nozzle.
Though it prefers the use of PLA, you may still use ABS plastic filament with this printing pen. The pen is also very sturdy and it doesn’t heat up too much despite it having a high-temperature setting. It is super comfortable and very lightweight and easy to use around.
The cable does add a bit of weight on the 3D printer pen for kids. The cable is much thicker than the cables of the other pens but considering the safety regulation for this item, it’s not a wonder why it should be thicker. The problem is that it’s pretty heavy on the hand making you want to keep it down once in a while because it can cause a strain on the wrist. Since the heating element is right on the nozzle, the plastic output is pretty hot when it comes out. So be careful, give it a few seconds or a couple of blows before you can touch it with your fingers.
This is very cheap compared to most of the 3D printing pens in our list. On top of that, it’s great for kids as well. The pen offers great quality printing with just a few hiccups in post-production but it is an overall great 3D printing pen, especially if you know that you’re giving it to your kid who is known to be a little less careful with it or her stuff.
Induxpert 3D Printing Pen
The reason why it is relatively suitable for kids aged 8 and above is because it is designed for kids in the first place. Made for 3D doodling, the Induxpert is a wonderful pen that would also suit your budget as a parent who is thinking of getting this toy for your child’s birthday--or any other celebration.
The pen is made with an acrylic outer shell which is pretty slim so it works well with smaller hands. This is also light making it easy to use and move around with. The pen is very simple with little controls and no distractions on it. It does have an OLED screen display where it shows you the speed adjustment and the temperature settings of your printing pen. It has a load and unload button that help the filament to pass through the extruder or simply pull-out the filament once you’re finished.
The temperature controls range from 130 to 230 degrees which is suitable for plastic filaments such as PLA and ABS. What’s great is that you can really adjust the temperatures one degree at a time instead of the typical two heating temperatures to choose from. This is more ideal and it is definitely adjustable to the needs of the speed of extrusion as well.
It barely heats up so even if your child accidentally touches the nozzle--not the tip--their fingers won’t get burnt. It’s only the tip of the nozzle that really gets hot. When damaged, you can buy a nozzle for easy replacement instead of buying a whole new set of 3D printing pen.
It is definitely very easy to use, direct-to-the-point, and easy to set-up so you can use it straight from the box. For a very affordable price of 3D printing pen, this is a great deal to have on your hands. This is one of the cheapest 3D printing pens on our list and that, in itself, is a great bonus.
The shape of the pen is pretty much a concern since it is rectangular. The soft edges may be comfy at first but you’ll end up feeling the discomfort after using it for a long time. When you buy this, you also need to buy an immediate supply of filaments since it only comes with 3 short strands of ABS filaments that can easily be consumed in a matter of minutes. The pen can overheat, so you may want to turn it off from time to time especially if you want to keep it longer. Overheating can really cause a mess with the extruder getting backed up and jammed with the melted plastic when not expelled too quickly.
This is cheap and very much as good as other 3D pens on our list. With great options to choose from, you may want to have this either for you or your child since it offers just as good printing and safety features as other higher priced 3D printing pens on the market.
TwiceForPrice 3D Printing Pen Kit
Safety is definitely the first criteria we look for in choosing the best 3D printing pen for kids. And one reason why this 3D Printing Pen Kit is a great pick is because of the pen’s safety features. This is designed with an ergonomic contour fit grip allowing adult and children’s hands to hold the pen well and properly. The acrylic outer shell also adds a better non-slip grip making sure that it’s always in your hands at all times.
The pen has its own temperature adjustment settings and you can set the temperature specifically one degree at a time. The pen is relatively safe because it comes with its own base. This assures you that as you mold your sculpture as you go along, you won’t find the pen rolling over or falling into place it shouldn’t.
It has a heat emission hole right by the nozzle just and the heating element to prevent this from overheating and preventing the heat from translating into the outer shell. The hole allows better air flow and two speeds to choose from. And it can also accommodate both PLA and ABS materials for better and easier printing. This 3D printing pen is cheaper than most of the pens on our list too.
Despite the cheap price, this is a really great 3D printing pen with its own safety features. This is a suitable starter pen for 3D printing for every child. It is very easy to maneuver around in. In fact, it is light and easy to the touch as well.
The pen has a thin outer casing that doesn’t really hold up its shape for long. The heat hole is great for the pen but when you put your hand over it unconsciously, it can really burn your fingers especially when you’re on high heat.
For a relatively cheap choice and as a great starting pen for 3D printing, this is not only an affordable option, but this item is really great too! It is specifically designed with kids in mind so it makes a wonderful gift for Christmas or birthdays.
Kuman 100C 3D Printing Pen
The Kuman 3D Printing Pen has a noticeable design. The pen is made ergonomically with design features that allow you to hold on to it well. The pen has a complete plastic outer shell. This is particularly a great thing because it means that the pen is very safe to use. The outer shell is non-conductive since it is an insulator. So, it keeps the heat from the interior heating element at bay. And for that reason, this makes a great 3D printing pen for kids. What’s great about this is that it is very suitable for younger children starting at the age of 5.
It has 3 speeds to choose from (low, medium, high). The low-speed limit allows you to fill in spaces quickly for the faster speeds and make fast drying intricacies with the slow speed. The first indicator light refers to slow; the second indicator light is up for medium speed; while fast refers to both indicator lights flashed on. You can easily change the speed by clicking on the switch at the side of the pen.
The pen is easy to hold because it slims down to the tip. This makes it very comfortable for people with either smaller or larger hands. Smaller kids can have a good grip on this 3D printer pen. What’s more is that it has a forward and backward button that commands the printing pen to go through the extruder. The back button allows you to withdraw the filament and put the printing pen on standby. You won’t find any other printing pen with the back button. This is a great safety feature and this also helps prevent the filament from jamming up your printing pen.
It’s also great that this works really well with both common types of plastic pens: ABS and PLA. This makes the pen even more versatile. It has a power adaptor with a decent 55-inch long cable. It’s great that it has a heat emission port but it’s placed at the wrong end which makes the hot air releases give the tendency for burning your skin from time to time.
This is pretty cheap for a great printing pen with tons of features. What we do love about it though is that it is light and easy to hold and use. It has great features and it is surely child-friendly since you can easily press the back button to pull-out the filament in case things go wrong. It has unclogging mechanisms preventing you from ever having to worry about your filament jamming up your enjoyable drawing time.
It also has a fast boot of only 30 seconds. This is great since most pens would require about 1 to 2 minutes of heating time for it to start printing the ink. It also automatically goes into standby mode when not in use after 5 minutes which is an additional love factor for this printing pen. Another thing we love about it is that it has a helpful spatula for art painting making it very ideal for kids since the children won’t have to touch the freshly printed plastic in case they need to mold it into some other shape. It’s a great 3D printing pen that really makes a lot of difference.
The downside to this is that it can still burn the skin due to the heat emission port found right at the foot of the nozzle. Even if the plastic casing or outer shell prevents the item from getting too hot for the hand, it becomes a problem for the system itself because it doesn’t release enough of the heat building up inside and may cause the pen to burn out quickly. Though it has a heat emission port, it becomes a problem when the hand covers it (the hot air can also burn the skin) and it’s too small to really ventilate the inner system well. We believe that if placed elsewhere, it will reduce the risk of it burning out fast.
For the price tag that falls under $50, this is a real bargain. It has tons of awesome features that we love, and what’s more, it’s a great item to give to children as a gift. Though it may pose a few problems, it will only do so when it’s not taken cared of properly. This is a great product to have for you and your family and it falls exactly at the right price.
Additional Must-have Items and Accessories for 3D Printing Pens
3D Artist Supply ABS Filament Refill Pack
You’ll definitely need a refill for your 3D printer pen and one of the most common filaments is the ABS plastic. Cheap and readily available, you’ll love that you only have to pay less than $20 to fill your 3D printing pen with the best quality ABS filaments. It has 12 different colors with each color amounting to 20 feet. That’s a total 240 feet of refills for your 3D printing pen. The plastic follows the standard 1.7 mm filament diameter size.
If you’re looking for a filament that is compatible with practically 90% of all 3D printing pens, this is the perfect choice. For less than a couple of tens, you’ll have a great fill and color choices.
PLA 3D Pen Filament Refills
Another common filament on our list is PLA. For a more eco-friendly choice, this is surely a must-have that you should be ready to purchase. You can get 16 different colors; each color measures up to 20 feet. It totals to about 320 feet of refills for your 3D printing pen. Now, that’s a lot! The filament also follows the standard size of 1.75mm in diameter. Since PLA is widely accepted by most--if not all--3D printing pens out on the market, you are sure that this PLA filament will also fit your 3D printing pen no matter what the brand is.
This is well-recommended for 3D printing pens that you have purchased for your child. Since it is eco-friendly, cheap, and good for the environment, you won’t go wrong with this item at all.
Glyby Paper Mold for 3D Printing Pen
When you first get your 3D printing pen, you don’t know how to start or what to make first, right? Well, this is definitely what you need. This mold can help you start. Since 3D printing is very new, it’s a bit difficult to figure out how you’re going to make your very first sculpture. This is a set of paper molds that you can draw over, peel off, and put together. The stencils are very simple architectural designs and it’s a wonderful starter kit for beginners. There are 20 different patterns to choose from.
For every starting 3D pen user, this is a real necessity especially for kids who are still going to figure out what their first sculpture would be. For less than $10 dollars, you get to enjoy your pens without any problem.
Qingsm 3D Pen Drawing Stencils
For a more detailed and colorful drawing stencils, this is a great choice to have. If you’re the type who prefers having guides to create models of your preference, then this is a higher level set of stencils for beginners and even for those who have already gotten used to using a 3D printing pen. It is a complete guide to making wonderful toys for kids. There are 20 different stencils to choose from. And what’s great about it is that it’s made of copperplate paper. It offers a good print and a good gloss making it a wonderful guide in creating various printing items. The paper size is A4.
This is an awesome stencil set since it is very detailed and offers detailed guides in creating small toys for kids. The paper won’t easily get destroyed since it is copper plated. And you can easily get your hands on it for a very affordable price.
Creopop Regular Ink Refills
This ink refill is only a must-have for those who choose to get themselves a Creopop 3D printing pen. Creopop is a great product but it easily runs out of ink. The ink refills come in three different colors: Red, Yellow, and Green. The cool ink is made of photopolymer, a material that changes when it is exposed to a broad spectrum of light (i.e. ultraviolet light). In this case, instead of CreoPop heating plastic to produce a 3D ink, it instead lights up the photopolymer to break it down and make it soft and malleable for safer use.
Since typical plastic filaments require high-heat for it to melt, it is rather risky for children to play with and thus the CreoPop was created. They have many other types of inks: regular, glowing, elastic, aromatic, body paint, magnetic, conductive, glittering, and temperature sensitive inks.
What’s a 3D Printing Pen?
We are probably more familiar with a 3D printer than a 3D printing pen. A 3D printing pen is literally a 3D printer that you can hold with your hands. It’s a small 3D printer that you can use like a pen. Instead of making or coding a design on your computer for it to be printed, you draw or write a design using this pen to create a 3D object.
How does a 3D printing pen work?
Technically, a 3D printer and a 3D printing pen use the same printing mechanism; it’s just that a 3D printing pen is made on a smaller scale. A 3D printer pen works a lot like a hot glue gun. You insert a plastic filament at the back where the 3D printing pen would heat the plastic until it’s almost at its melting point. The softened filament is excreted through an extruder tip. As you print the filament and create your 3D project, the plastic immediately starts to cool down. And since it’s plastic, it hardens once it cools.
Unlike a hot glue gun, the glue stick is very soft and gentle. But the plastic filament used by a 3D printing pen melts and turns hard and holds whatever shape you have printed or made. It’s a very simple mechanism but the 3D printing pen is actually a complex handheld machine.
How does a 3D printer work?
3D printing cannot print anything without a computer. Though 3D printing has a lot of perks, one of the greatest disadvantages falls on designing an item that you’re going to 3D print. It starts first with creating a digital model.
You can make a 3D model using software like AutoDesk 123D Design, 3D Tin, Blender, Sculptris, Sketchup, and more. With the use of all these 3D software, you can design your 3D model ready for 3D printing. This software allows you to make your 3D design from scratch. It is a bit complicated for beginners to design a 3D model of what they’d like to start with. But there are also other ways of creating a 3D model.
You can also get 3D templates made by those who are very familiar with creating CAD (Computer Aided Design) files. You can take free 3D model designs online or even purchase some designs. Some even sell their designs online for other 3D printers to print in their own houses. Another way of getting or having a 3D design is with the use of a 3D scanner. They are pretty expensive because they involve lasers and a scanning platform. But with so many tutorials online on making your own home 3D scanner, it’s practically that easy to become your own master 3D printer at home.
After creating a 3D model, you need to slice it. It’s like creating a grid over and around the 3D model. This sort of divides your entire model into cubes to break it down so that your 3D printer can work out the intricacies of each model. This is what we call slicing. Some printers would require a specific slicing tool to break a 3D design apart. This allows the printer to check out the more intricate details of the 3D design and work out to printing it. Some 3D printers can be very slicing software-specific and for that reason, mistakes in printing out a certain 3D design may pose problems. After the slicing tool, you’ll already be able to print your design. The 3D printer starts to print your design one layer at a time.
What’s the difference between a 3D printer and a 3D printing pen?
There are a lot of differences between a 3D Printer as compared to a 3D printing pen. First of all is the size of the pen. A 3D printing pen is a handheld printing machine. It’s small and compact and it fits comfortably in most hand sizes. It’s only a little bigger than a pen. A 3D printing machine is much bigger than that. It’s also larger than an average printer.
Another difference between the two is the material used for printing. A 3D printing pen only uses a plastic filament; a 3D printer uses a different tool in printing digitally. Printing pens use a strip of plastic that we can use or make any art or any project that we wish. A 3D printer is loaded with plastic to print a 3D project.
Another difference is the manner of printing. A 3D printing pen is a manual printer. You can draw what you want to make and immediately have the output. A 3D printer needs a digital print or a design for it to follow and it’s only done through a computer. It needs some coding and meticulous designing on the computer so that you can print the right 3D printing project.
Next, we have the ease of use and printing. Obviously, the 3D printer pen is easier to use than a 3D printer. A 3D printing pen is pretty direct when it comes to its usage. On the other hand, it is very complicated to use a 3D printer. It takes a lot of time to design an item that you’d like to print and it is also pretty tricky to get every detail you want to perfection. A 3D printing pen is pretty much a breeze to use. Just plug it in and start to draw.
The final product is also a big difference. 3D printers produce a nicely refined product. It’s whole and definitely sturdier. Every detail is printed well and the end product is exactly as the one designed on the computer. A 3D printing pen’s end-product is very coarse. Since it can only print out strings at a time, the fitness in printing out or designing your desired item won’t be as perfect as you’d like it to look. A 3D printer’s result is very refined as compared to a 3D printing pen where you actually have no clue as to how your end product will really look like.
Materials used for printing is one other difference between the two. A 3D printing pen uses special plastic filaments. That’s the main difference. The plastic should be a filament that can be fed into the 3D printing pen. A 3D Printer is more flexible when it comes to the material it uses in printing. Actually, you’ll be surprised to know that you can use various materials--depending on the 3D printer--in printing your 3D projects.
What can a 3D printer do?
3D printers can really print whatever you want to make. From your very own containers to your own figurines and other various things that your imagination can think of, as long as you can design it on the computer, then you can also have it printed. When it comes to design, the only limitation is your ability to design your desired end-product. Though you can design it on the computer, it’s not guaranteed that it will really print it out the way you’d like it to be. There are also a couple of features that you might not be able to fulfill completely.
A 3D printer can do just as much as anything you’d like on a smaller scale. And for this reason, a 3D printing pen is gaining a lot of attention, especially for artists and children. With a great tool to making anything from scratch, artists and children alike are really learning to love and enjoy the full use of a 3D printing pen.
Your 3D printing pen looks like a stubby pen or pencil but instead of using either lead or ballpoint or gel inks, it uses a plastic filament. And instead of also writing on paper, a 3D printing pen writes on air. You can create any image you’d like without limitations. But the only problem is that whatever you draw or write is permanent. Here are some popular materials that are used for 3D printers:
Plastic. This is the first material ever used for 3D printing because plastic is very flexible. Most would simply melt the plastic and start printing the project layer by layer.
Powdered Metal. Stainless Steel, Bronze, Gold, Nickel, Titanium, and many more. In the form of metal dust, you can print your 3D printing project. What 3D printers do is that it binds the metal dust together forming a smoother end-product than with the use of a cast. It is also much safer since it doesn’t involve direct high-heat exposure. Don’t be surprised to find out that later on, the jewelry you are wearing is actually 3D Printed.
Carbon Fiber. This is really sturdy. They are as strong as metal, but as cheap and flexible as plastic. Since carbon fiber is very easy to work with, as a base, a 3D printer prints using plastic and finishes it with layers of carbon fiber.
Stem Cells. Who’d have ever thought you can 3D print a stem cell? When a body was printed for Vision in Avengers: The Age of Ultron, you’d probably think that’s impossible, right? Modern technology is amazing in so many ways and one of which is the fact that stem cells can be printed but for now, they are printing skin and blood vessels. In the not so far off future, maybe, you don’t have to line up to look for a kidney, heart or liver donor for transplant.
Carbomorph. It’s like printing two different things at the same time. You print out a material that you can put in the plastic. This is a really great way of reducing manufacturing time and cost and boosting efficiency and production. An example of which would be batteries and circuits that can be printed and enclosed in plastic.
Paper. Seriously? YES! Paper can be used for 3D printing. A 3D printer trims a paper and glues them into layers.
Chocolate! This is probably the best news yet! 3D printing using chocolate and other soft food material is becoming popular especially in baking.
Concrete. For mass production and assembly houses, China actually prints out parts of a house like walls and flooring from concrete so that they can simply just assemble it.
How to draw with a 3D printing pen?
There are plenty of ways to draw using a 3D printing pen:
Freehand. Drawing by freehand is one popular way of making the most of your printing pen. You can just literally draw without any model to copy or without the use of a mold. This is very popular with kids; it lets them enhance their imagination and bring their art out of the paper.
Drawing Pad Model. This is great for starters. There are plenty of drawing guides on paper that new users can use. They trace different shapes from the paper and connect the pieces all together to form their very own
Molds. They are created to help those who still have no idea what to do when creating their first 3D sculpture. You can simply get a toy and draw over it as a way to start off your project.
What is PLA, PCL, ABS, Flex, and Photopolymers?
ABS, or acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, is a plastic that is as strong and as easily shaped as rubber. It easily hardens to create a sturdy masterpiece when used for 3D printing. It is, however, not environment friendly. It does pose health risks because it is made of a mix of chemicals that is definitely not suitable for anyone to use. It melts at higher temperature starting from 190 to 260 degrees celsius. On the other hand, it is very easy to shape and definitely much cheaper than other plastics used for 3D printing.
PLA, or Polylactic Acid, is one of the main plastics or polymers used in making 3D models--especially in 3D printing. It is very malleable making it great for shaping and reshaping objects it’s made of. It is very eco-friendly since it is made out of sugar cane, starch or corn as compared to its more popular 3D polymer material, ABS. It melts at temperatures starting from 170 to 230 degrees celsius. It is also odorless and only has a mild plastic smell once it starts to burn.
PCL, or Polycaprolactone, is a polyester or plastic that is biodegradable. It is an environmental friendly plastic that easily melts at a lower temperature of 70 to 100 degree celsius. It is most commonly used to manufacture polyurethane. It is also a food grade plastic making it pretty safe and free of dangerous chemicals. However, it is 4 times more expensive than ABS and PLA.
Thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), or flexible plastic, is a polyurethane granular powder that is pretty elastic; hence it’s called flex, flexy or flexible. It is very easy to mold and shape. Once shaped, it still has the flexible characteristics making the end product feel soft or silky to the touch but holds its shape despite. It is as strong and elastic as rubber but is definitely smoother and more malleable. It does have the plastic smell though.
Photopolymer, or Cool Ink, is unique only to the CreoPop 3D printing pen. A photopolymer is a type of plastic that is highly sensitive to light--ultraviolet light to be more specific. Instead of being exposed to high or hot temperatures for it to start melting, UV light is used to soften it up in order to create various shapes and sculptures. It’s called cool ink because it is already in its softened form ready for the CreoPop to use. The UV light serves as its binder so that the cool ink will hold its structure and bind.
What’s the difference between the plastic filament types? Are they all safe to use?
The plastic types have different properties from each other but they all have the same end-goal which is to harden and hold the structure that you have created. They all have their own melting point as well. But since they are plastics, not all of them are safe to use. The safest plastic to use would be PCL since it is a food-grade type of material. PLA is also a safe type of plastic because it came from natural resources instead of being created synthetically.
What causes a filament to jam?
The main reason why most plastic jams up is the fact that the settings are all wrong. Think of your glue gun. When the gun gets too hot, the melted glue stick get stuck. Jamming becomes very common because a lot of users would often set the temperature wrong.
When you leave a filament in a hot pen, the filament will deform. If you don’t let it out through the extruder, the filament causes the pen to jam. Most of the 3D printing pens we have on our list have an auto-shutoff or standby mode to prevent a filament from melting inside the pen.
Do all plastic filaments smell?
Melting plastic has a certain smell but it’s the burning plastic smell that’s worse. ABS plastic smell is not healthy for you at all, especially if you use a 3D printing pen with your kids. Compared to ABS, PLA is much safer. But no matter what you do, you should always use a 3D printing pen only in well-ventilated areas.
PLA is known to be safer and it produces fewer odors when it is being melted. It is also made of corn-based material. And for that reason, it is considered to be safest overall. You will also notice that it doesn’t burn just as much as ABS plastic. Though the smell is not that overpowering, sensitivity to certain scents can trigger an allergy and plastic can really aggravate allergies. In reality, the smell of a 3D printing pen is a lot like melting hot glue stick. But leaving the pen hot without letting the filament pass through the extruder will burn the plastic and cause the horrible plastic smell. Other than that, the smell is subtle and it isn’t that overpowering.
Key Findings & The Duel
CreoPop versus 3Doodler
The very first 3D printing pen versus the very first 3D cordless printing pen. This is a matter of which can serve us better and the CreoPop stands out even more -- with great ink that doesn’t burn plastic, healthy, and also eco-friendly. From the functional standpoint, it is also very easy to use. It is light and very versatile when it comes to printing. On the other hand, the 3Doodler is an awesome item as well. It is lightweight and very smooth printing. It is also versatile since it can melt various filaments. It’s much cheaper and having its parts changed, fixed and removed isn’t a problem. It is also very easy to find a filament for the 3Doodler than the CreoPop which is very brand specific because it is the only brand that uses Cool ink. On the basis of making a finished product though, the Cool Ink print is more fragile because it can soften up under intense heat from the sunlight.
CreoPop versus Kuman 100C
Price is always a major factor in choosing practically anything. When it comes to quality, both items produce great quality end-results. Both are also very easy-to-use, and pretty light for the hand to draw with. But as a matter of safety, the The Kuman is great item to use than any of the 3D printing pens we have on our list. The Kuman is great when it comes to printing but it also has some downsides that just come with a cheaper made material than a high-end 3D printing pen.
The fact that the Creopop is unique in multiple levels make this high-end an ultimate 3D printer. Though it’s not perfect, it’s an item that really displays the best qualities needed for a 3D printing paper. It’s a great printing pen in the sense that it is highly efficient, easy to use and comes with great features. So, despite the heavy price to pay and the costly cool ink refills, those are practically the only problem that you have to face in getting yourself a CreoPop 3D printing pen.