Gadget, 3D Pen is a 3D Printer in Your Hand

Submitted by reb on Wed, 06/08/2016 - 14:49

3D Pens: A 3D Printer in Your Hand


What's a 3D Pen? (Jan 25, 2015)
* 3D Pen. It's basically a hot glue gun, which you can draw in the air. Doodle on any surface and build up the object. Some 3D pens are cool to touch, working on skin. Feed in a special glue stick, which can run forward, or reverse to eject. 3D pens are often around $100.00 and the plastic "glue stick" is often expensive. Resulting sculpture is often fragile, but can be bulked out with foam or bondo. Sculpture solidifies instantly as you draw. Some pens use Heat, UV Light, or Blue Light. YouTube has many reviews. Some 3D pens are finicky, not all are suitable for your needs. 3D pens don't usually provide fine detail.

* Related Articles: 3D Printers. Fabrication. CNC Machines. Build a House. 3D Movies. Welding. Sewing. Basics of zBrush. Boards. Rope & Thread. Multipurpose Tools.



3D Pens

* 3Doodler 2.0: Melts plastic, Smells weird. Thin, easy to hold. Optional battery power. Will likely be the most popular 3D pen of 2015.

* 3Doodler 1.0: Not Recommended. Outdated. Gets clogged. Melts plastic, Smells weird. Bulky to hold. Possibly noisy fan. 

* Polyes Q1 by FUTURE MAKE: Cool to touch. Thin, easy to hold. 

* CreoPop: Cool to touch. Thin, easy to hold. 

* LIX: Melts plastic, Smells weird. Thin, easy to hold. 

* SwissPen: 

* YaYa3D Pen V1.5: Melts plastic, Smells weird. ABS 1.75mm Filament. 

* Myriwell 3D Printing Pen: Weights 65g. $80 USD. 65ms print speed. ABS Filament. 12V 3A AC Adapter. Nozzle Aperture 0.4mm. Extruding Temp 160°C to 260°C. Buy at Brando. 

* 3Dsimo: 

* G672 3D Printing Pen by chinavasion. Product code: CVSN-G672. Melts plastic. Nozzle Diameter 0.4mm. Heating Temperature 160 to 230 Degree Celsius (Adjustable). Pen weight 65g. 1 Year Warranty. Power Input AC 110V-220V. Power Output DC 12V 3A. Slightly bulky. Pen is $69.99 at, comes with plastic. $8.35 for three plastic refills. Can likely use any 0.4mm ABS or PLA filament meant for a full size 3D printer.



Visual Aid Images

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ABS vs PLA. Two Amazing Plastics (From the 3Doodler Manual)

* ABS Refills: Draw vertical upwards. Nicely bendable. Doesn't stick to paper or glass. Opaque only (not clear). Only a few colors. Weld certain plastics together. Won't stick to fabrics. Can't be stretched while cooling. Made from Petroleum. Smells slightly like melted plastic, but not as bad as a permanent marker. Hard, impact resistant, tough. Melts around 225 to 250 C, or 437 to 482 F. Vulnerable to moisture, sunlight, over heating. More resistant to chemicals than PLA. Doesn't bond as well as ABS. Last a long time, doesn't bio-degrade very much. Best for beginners due to drawing upwards better than PLA. 

* PLA Refills: Can't draw vertical upwards. Not very bendable. Sticks to paper, glass, metal, ceramics. Translucent and glossy. Lots of colors. Won't weld plastics together. Can stick to some fabrics. Can be stretched slightly while cooling. Made from plant based corn, soy, or beans. Smells sweet like corn. Hard but more brittle than ABS. Likely to break if bent. Melts about 190 to 240 C, or 374 to 464 F. Vulnerable to moisture, sunlight, over heating (droops if it gets too hot). Bonds better than ABS. PLA is bio-plastic, so it eventually biodegrades over the years.




Alternatives to 3D Pens

* 3D Pens: Costs more than clay, but extremely less than a complex machine. 

* Solder Wire Sculpture: A spool of fairly-soft, low-melting wire. Use air filter mask, if it contains lead. Melting the wire may smell bad. You can also join metal with it. Skim my soldering article here.

* Hand-Sculpting Clay, or Paper-Mache: Cheapest cost by far. Some clays like Sculpey can be quickly hardened by cooking. Some clays air-dry (can take days). Some can't solidify. Clay is a great option for children.

* 3D Printers: Automated. 

* CNC Machine: Automated. 

* Water Cutting Machine: Automated. 

* Laser Cutting Machine: Automated. 

* Dremmel Handheld Rotary Tool: For carving, cutting, drilling, or sanding hard surfaces. Extremely loud. Bulky. Optional battery. Usually much smaller than a Router.

* Digital 3D Design Software: Not physical, but can often be sent to a 3D printer. Example software is CAD, SketchUp, zBrush, Blender, Maya, Autodesk 3ds Max, Cinema 4D, UnrealEngine, UnityEngine. Often requires a fast PC. Communities can contribute to a design. Can often view in Virtual Reality glasses such as GoogleCardboard.

* Welding Metal: May be expensive. Danger to eyes unless caution is used. Used welding units are less expensive. 

* Woodworking: Cutting, sanding, or glue; to shape a wooden object by means of adding or subtracting it's shape. 

* Erectors Set: Screw together metal plates. Not for small children (tiny parts). Big sets may be expensive. Found all over Ebay.




Do It Yourself 3D Pen

* None work very well, as far as I know. (Early 2015).



Internet Resources

* YouTube CreoPop:
* Wikipedia 3Doodler:
* Wikipedia 3D Printers:
* Wikipedia 3D Printing:



Advice and Misc Notes

* Melting ABS/PLA materials may release unpleasant odars, and burn a new user.
* UV Light 3D Pens may harm human eyes.
* Some 3D pens can't heat the plastic continually, instead the motor slows. 
* Many 3D pens can't cool the melted plastic, forcing you to use a fan or blow on the plastic to instantly cool it, especially when drawing vertically (the Y-Axis).



End of Article.