Archive | July 2013

Prices 3D filament


Market cycles and the relative time it takes for a new innovation to become a commodity. My main point is the price of Plastic 3D filament, my reference is personal and involves the reverse osmosis home drinking water system industry.

In early 1980 residential Reverse Osmosis drinking water systems were a mystery to most folks. I set out to demystify the process. Way back in 1980 the basic element of the RO system,  the reverse osmosis membranes, were crude, short lived and extremely expensive, Wholesale in lots of ten or better,a (10) gallon per day membrane cost $100.00. That was 1980 today you can purchase entire reverse osmosis under sink systems for not much more than the cost of a membrane back then. You will find that the new systems put out a great deal more water typically (50) gallons per day and the membrane element is extremely stable with a very long service life.

Now I said all of that to show you something you might find interesting. Just (8-9) months ago you could find one kilogram spools of ABS filament in the range of ($45.00 – 70.00) . Yes plastic 3D printing was fun but the filament cost a fortune.

Fast forward ,  today high quality , extremely precise, extrusions of virgin materials are commonly found at around $32.00 – 36.00) per kilogram, shipped Priority mail.

Exceptional,  yes to say the least, and when you stop to consider that on average ($8.00) of that ($32.95) is shipping via USPS you can see that the price of filament has moved from a high margin specialty to that of a commodity in less than one year.

Users of large quantities of filament can obtain quotes from just ($19.00 )per kilogram plus UPS ground charges.

The mystery, high hype, excessive profit margins era for plastic 3D filament is over.

I expect prices to continue even lower albeit at a much slower pace and over longer time intervals .

Thanks for the read and I wish you the best of outcomes, in all of your 3D printing efforts.