MakerBot Cupcake CNC print resolution

Some people have asked me about the MakerBot’s print resolution.  Although this information can be found on the MakerBot wiki, there’s no harm in disseminating this data. 1  Before I get into some of the technical stuff, let me just say this – the print resolution is pretty freaking good for a $750 DIY robot and it will give a $15,000 commercial printer a run for it’s money.

As a printer that can create objects in three dimensions the normal two-dimensional printer resolution jargon of “DPI” or “dots per inch” doesn’t mean much.  The printing resolution for the X/Y axes is 0.085mm and the resolution for the Z axis is 3.125 microns.  Most of the time you’re going to have a Z axis resolution of about 1/3 of a millimeter.  If you print with layers much smaller than that it will take forever to print without a huge increase in quality.

Or, to put it another way…  if you were to hand me two objects one printed on a MakerBot and one printed on a commercial printer, I’m going to ask you why the heck one of them costs $14,000 more than the other.  I’ve printed some pretty intricate and detailed stuff on my MakerBot.  As I tune it I hope to improve it even more.

  1. If you haven’t poked around the website, I highly recommend it.  There’s a lot of information about the Cupcake CNC, RepRap, fused deposition modeling, robots, and all sorts of stuff. []

4 Responses to “MakerBot Cupcake CNC print resolution”

  1. […] The other day I pointed out the crazy build quality achieved on a RepMan.  This is all good and well for RepMan owners – but can your MakerBot get this kind of resolution and build quality? […]

  2. […] The other day I pointed out the crazy build quality achieved on a RepMan.  This is all good and well for RepMan owners – but can your MakerBot get this kind of resolution and build quality? […]

  3. Jeremydeath says:

    Not only does the commercial printer cost $15,000 (for the Dimension uPrint), but the plastic is another $900 for 4 lbs of the official stuff! Compare this to $30 for 5 lbs of ABS for the Makerbot and you really start to wonder…

  4. MakerBlock says:

    @Jeremydeath: It’s pretty incredible what they’ve managed to charge for commercial printers and cartridges. All of this makes the innovations from RepRap and MakerBat all the more amazing.