Action figures are small scale figures that represent any fictional characters, normally collected by people as a hobby. They come in various sizes with the standard being approximately 18”.
These figures are made from aluminum wires, modeling clay, plastic resins and numerous sculpting tools which require time, effort and meticulousness.
Thankfully, you won’t have to go through all these hassles with the existence of 3d printers.
3D printers are printers that can print 3D or CAD models by building them up layer by layer. With 3D printers, you can save so much time in prototyping including creation of action figures.
So, you want to create your own 3D printed action figure but don’t know which to get due to the various models in the market?
No worries! In this article I will list the 10 best 3D printers for action figures on the market along with a brief buying guide. Let’s dive in!
3D Printer for Action Figures Comparison
|Image||3D Printer||Layer Resolution||Build Volume||Price|
|ANYCUBIC Photon UV||0.1-0.3 mm||115x65x155 mm||See details at Amazon|
|QIDI TECH Shadow 5.5 S||0.01-0.2 mm||115x65x150 mm||See details at Amazon|
|Dremel Digilab 3D20||0.1-0.4 mm||9.0x5.9x5.5 inches||See details at Amazon|
|Sindoh 3DWOX 1||0.05-0.4 mm||210x200x195 mm||See details at Amazon|
|ANYCUBIC Photon S||0.1-0.3 mm||115x65x165mm||See details at Amazon|
|ELEGOO Mars||0.01-0.2 mm||4.72x2.68x6.1 inches||See details at Amazon|
|LONGER Orange 30||0.01-0.1 mm||4.72x2.68x6.69 inches||See details at Amazon|
|NOVA3D Elfin||0.050 mm||130x70x150mm||See details at Amazon|
|Monoprice Voxel||100-400 micron||150x150x150mm||See details at Amazon|
|FlashForge Adventurer 3 Lite||0.1-0.4 mm||150x150x150 mm||See details at Amazon|
My Reviews of 10 Best 3D Printers for Action Figures in 2020
1. ANYCUBIC Photon UV 3D Printer
ANYCUBIC Photon UV is our first pick when it comes to the best 3D printer for action figures. It’s made of high-quality CNC parts which ensure consistency and durability in the long run.
It features a 2K LCD screen with HD resolution of 2560×1440 with XY and Z-layer resolution of 47 microns and 10 microns respectively. With those resolutions, the ANYCUBIC Photon is able to deliver high-precision details as small as 0.047mm.
Aside from details, the printer is also able to print with high speed ranging from 20-30mm/h.
The Photon UV is affordable and offers a friendly UX (User Experience) and UI (User Interface) that allows you to experience the latest slicer software and monitor print status in real-time.
With this item, you’ll be able to build action figures effortlessly in no time.
- Comes with a slicer software
- User friendly interface
- High- precision and details
- Very affordable
- Resin smells foul
- Small build volume
2. QIDI TECH Shadow 5.5 S 3D Printer
QIDI TECH has been constantly focusing on developing high quality 3D printer and the finally succeeded with the Shadow 5.5 S. This printer is affordable, only slightly more expensive than the ANYCUBIC Photon UV.
The external body of this printer is made of aluminum CNC parts. Furthermore, the Shadow 5.5 S features a double z-axis linear guide, equipped with four optical axis structures for increased stability.
More features include a 2K LCD masking screen, a large printing area of 115x65x150, and latest professional slicing software.
Don’t worry about foul odor produced from the resin!
QIDI TECH has managed to develop materials with low odor and firm resin properties to improve printing experience. Not only that, the dual fan with carbon air filtration also contributes a lot.
- Modern air-filtration system
- High print quality
- Simple user interface
- Small text size (LCD Screen)
3. Dremel Digilab 3D20 3D Printer
Dremel is one of the most trusted companies when it comes to producing quality products.
The Dremel FDM printer is easy to set up because it includes clear instruction book and with everything pre-assembled in the box. Inside the box, you’ll also be getting 0.5kg spool of PLA filament.
The Digilab 3D20 is packed with features, starting from the full-color LCD touch screen to the large build volume of 230x150x140 mm. The single extruder also features temperatures as high as 230°C /397°F.
Start printing your action figures immediately! The Digilab 3D20’s open system grants you the ability to download any models form the internet or create yours with the CAD software.
- Ease of setup
- Touchscreen LCD screen
- PLA filament
- Quite loud
- Software is hard to use
4. Sindoh 3DWOX 1 3D Printer
Just remember that working with resin means that you need have good ventilation during work. To start off, the Sindoh 3DWOX 1 possesses a simple and elegant design.
At approximately $1,500, the large printer with print size of 8.2×7.9×7.7 inches come with user friendly touchscreen located below the power button.
The key features of this 3D printer are its assisted bed leveling to avoid slanted surface and the fully automated filament loading. Simply insert the swap out the cartridge and it’s good to go!
Moreover, the metal bed plate always ensures easy bed adhesion and safety.
For connectivity, the 3DWOX 1 is integrated with USB and Ethernet ports plus wireless connectivity such as Wi-Fi.
Yes, it’s expensive, but it’s worth to invest on with all its extraordinary features!
- Less noise produced
- Assisted bed leveling
- Automated filament loading
- Space consuming
- Quite pricey
5. ANYCUBIC Photon S 3D Printer
Seeing how this is the second ANYCUBIC product in the list must be enough to prove the quality of this brand. The features of the ANYCUBIC Photon S are more or less the same with the previous product, with a few upgrades and extra features.
For starters, let’s talk about its touchscreen LCD screen with2560x1440HD screen and UV lighting which dries out each layer of material evenly.
This 3D printer is designed with dual linear z-axis rail. This way, the printer bed is ensured to stay balanced even during printing which will eventually produce figures with detailed and smooth surface.
In addition, the resin-based printer also comes with double fan for air circulation that uses carbon air filtration, ultimately reducing odor produced from resins.
- Affordable price
- Additional slicing software
- Clean and detailed print results
- Responsive LCD screen
- Small build plate
6. ELEGOO Mars 3D Printer
The ELEGOO Mars is another best 3D printer for action figures that fits into the affordable price section.
With precision as its goal, it provides error-free printing with XY axis resolution of 0.047mm through the 2K (2560×1440) HD masking LCD.
It also comes with a 3.5” touch screen for real-time printing process monitoring.
CHITUBOX, their reliable slicing software delivers extraordinary experience. It takes exactly only 1 minute to slice 30Mb. stl model files. That’s 10x faster than ordinary open-sourced slicing software.
What I like about the ELEGOO Mars is its integrated computer board which makes offline printing with USB available. Simply connect your USB and you can save more time than connecting it to a laptop.
- Integrated computer board
- Sturdy steel ball design
- Easy setup
- Resin is quite smelly
- Printing can be messy at times
7. LONGER Orange 30 3D Printer
The LONGER Orange 30 is one of the cheapest options for printing action figures in the list. However, you shouldn’t underestimate its features yet.
It’s equipped with 2K 2560×1440 HD LCD screen with pixel resolution of up to 47.25μm, ensuring smooth and quality printing with big size of 4.72×2.68×6.69 inches.
With the user-friendly color touch screen, you can monitor and control printing process easily in real-time.
Of course, it also comes with its own slicing software that’s capable of producing 100M output file in just a minute. Aside from that, it’s also compatible with CHITUBOX.
To prevent overheating, Orange 30 is integrated with a system that automatically stops all printing process when the UV LED temperature gets too high. After temperature is back to normal (cooling system), it’ll then auto resume the halted printing process.
- Integrated with uniform matrix light
- Premium slicing software
- Cooling system
- Unclear instructions
8. NOVA3D Elfin 3D Printer
Small details are important when it comes printing action figures, and that can be achieved with the NOVA3D Elfin.
For starters, the printer features a 4.3” smart touch screen for easy navigation and real-time monitoring, 8GB storage, and multi-connection mode (Wi-Fi, USB, and Ethernet).
The 2K HD LCD display achieves a precision of up to 0.050mm, producing smooth surface and delicate finish for each layer.
The resin printer is designed with a special cover and resin vat design. You can now pout the resin back into the bottle through the sink with a filter paper, without spilling it everywhere.
- Multiple connectivity
- 8GB memory
- High precision
- Small build area
9. Monoprice Voxel 3D Printer
The Monoprice Voxel is an easy to use 3D printer with a friendly 2.8” fully-colored touch screen with IPS display. With an affordable price, the Voxel is fully packed with features.
Firstly, it offers a build area of 150x150x150mm, with rapid printing speed of 6mm per second and minimum layer thickness of 50 microns.
Next, the 3D printer is integrated with a quick nozzle change mechanism, allowing you to change nozzles quickly without the need for extra tools.
With the presence of the heated build plate (temperature up to 60°C), it’s very easy for you to remove or replace it with another build plate for quick printing.
To complete the 8GB printer, it comes with extra features such as built-in camera, Wi-Fi radio and a USB port.
- Fairly quiet
- Heated build plate
- Quick nozzle change
- Poor Wi-Fi range
- Decent camera
10. FlashForge Adventurer 3 Lite 3D Printer
With less than $500, you’ll be getting the FlashForge Adventurer 3 Lite which is worth more than it cost.
The FDM printer comes with a minimalist design, yet it has a large build volume of 150x150x150mm and a layer display with resolution of 0.1-0.4mm.
Continuing, the Adventurer 3 Lite will automatically preheat the nozzle to 200°C in less than a minute. The same nozzle is also detachable, making removal for cleaning way easier.
The Auto Filament Loading System is compatible with PLA/ABS/PEARL. Thanks to this system, printing will automatically be suspended when filament runs out and will only continue after new filament has been loaded.
Everything can be controlled and monitored through the 2.8” colored touchscreen. Lastly, the Adventurer 3 Lite produces a maximum of only 45dB, making it super quite and suitable to use anywhere.
- Compatibility with various filaments
- Low noise produced
- Removable heated build plate
- Bed leveling isn’t supported
How to Choose a 3D Printer for Action Figures – The Beginner’s Guide
Here is a short beginner’s guide on how to choose the best 3D printer for action figures that you can consider reading:
1. Printing Technology
The most basic printing technology comes in 2 types, the resin-based printers and the FDM based printers.
Objects printed with resin-based printers deliver more details and smoother surfaces. Resin-based printers turn its material into solid under light exposure. Using lasers, the printer will then draw out the object to be printed layer by layer.
Meanwhile, FDM (Fused Deposition Modeling) based printers are more affordable, though the low resolution often results in less detailed product.
It melts raw material and move in 3D motion to form horizontal layers of plastic which then sticks to each other to form an object.
2. Build Volume
This refers to the actual size that your 3D printer can build and is measured in millimeters. Larger build volume leads to higher price and amount of materials used.
When considering this factor, you should think about what the size of action figure you’re going to print. If your action figure is larger than the build volume of your printer, you’ll have to join them manually.
3. Materials Used
FDM printers normally uses thin plastic wire (filament) called PLA (Polylactic Acid) as their main material. Depending on the specification of your printer, it should use either 1.75mm or 3mm (diameters) of filament. Sometimes, you’ll also need additional materials.
Meanwhile, resin-based printers can do with just resin itself.
Read also: 10 Best 3D Printers for TPU
4. Ease of Use
Even the most expensive 3D printer in the world would be useless if it’s not easy and comfortable for you to use.
By this, I mean the software and user interface included in the printer. Some printers have their own built-in slicing software while some doesn’t.
Moreover, an easy to use printer should be able to guide their users through its every step for example, changing filaments.
5. Print Head
The print head is like the heart of a 3D printer. Without that, it won’t function at all!
It’s made of two parts, the extruder (coldend) and the hotend. The extruder makes up the upper portion of a 3D printer while the hotend occupies the lower portion of the printer.
The former acts as the motor and pulls the filament form the spool and pushes it to the latter, which then melts the filament and build an object.
6. Printer Size
Some people prefer a compact printer that’s easy to carry around while some chose to get a bigger machine to get a larger build volume. Of course, a larger machine guarantees a larger build volume.
Hence, you should choose one that suits your need.
Warranties exist to make sure that you as the customer get a product that operates as you should. You wouldn’t want to get a printer with defects, right?
Luckily, most 3D printers in the market come with a warranty. The only thing that differs is the warranty duration.
8. Your Budget
Ultimately, everything depends on your budget. I would recommend not spending more than what you need, especially if you’re tight on budget. However, if you do think that the printer you’re getting is best for you, do get them.
Hopefully, the 10 best 3D printers for action figures and buying guide above will help you in some way.
One tip from me is to read reviews on the internet, decide on your budget, and then make your purchase after. Good luck!