Career Advice Technology

How to Start Making Money With a 3d Printer


For a technology that’s overlooked (though that remains debatable, there’s more than one way to make a killing with 3D printing. Heck, it wouldn’t even be farfetched to say that people can eke a living out of it. Yes, you read that right. You can cash in chips with a 3D printer, much like in any casino with a no deposit bonus.

Do you want to learn how to do it, too? Want to know the secret of 3D printing success when it comes to business? Well, you’ll have to read on to find out!

How a 3D Printer Works

Basically, 3D printing forgoes the usual things we associate with printing (like ink and paper) and uses plastic instead. A 3D printer comes equipped with the necessary tools that let it “print” an object using the said material layer by layer until completed. The quality of the outcome mainly depends on the 3D printer itself and the plastic used.

This sounds simple enough to any 3D printer beginner, right? And the best part? You have numerous ways to make money out of it.

Effective Ways to Earn Cash with a 3D Printer

Once you read about these opportunities, you’ll soon discover just how versatile 3D printing really is. The possibilities are endless, to say the least. Unbelievable? Take a look:

1. Offer A 3D-Printing Service

This is undoubtedly one of the most direct ways for you to make money with a 3D printer. How does it work? Technically, you could be offering your device for rent to commercial and even residential users.

You can’t go wrong with this model because it keeps costs down for businesses and individuals that need a 3D printer for a limited time. 3D printers can fetch a hefty price tag, after all.

This only takes knowing what a 3D printer is used for and how to operate it. And everything becomes easy once you learn the ropes!

You also don’t need to target a large audience at the start – those within your local area would suffice. Over time and with proper management, your service’s reputation will inevitably increase. By then, you would have had plenty of time to prepare for expansion.

2. Sell Your Creations Via an E-Commerce Website or Other Platforms

Since you’re probably already planning what 3D printer to buy, it’s almost a no-brainer to start selling your prints, right? What’s neat is you can do it along with any other 3D printing venture you embark on.

Money Subsidiary recommends taking time to research what niches are making the most buzz currently and start brainstorming ideas from there. You may even take commission work – ask your clients what exactly they want to print.

As for where to sell in the beginning, there are platforms like Shapeways, which allow you to set up a 3D printing store. It will provide you with most of the essential tools you need to showcase your 3D printer designs and advertise them.

What are the most useful and in-demand items you can 3D print? Protective casings for gadgets are a good example. Kitchen tools are also gaining a lot of traction. For more aesthetic-leaning creations, you can’t go wrong with 3D printer miniatures, jewelry, and accessories.

You can even consider hobbies and toys like miniature figurines of video game characters, which are wildly popular these days! A lot of diehard gamers collect figurines of characters from game series like The Witcher, Final Fantasy 7, Warhammer, Fallout, among others. There are practically hundreds of titles where you can get ideas for printing!

The key is to exercise your creativity as much as possible and come up with eye-catching designs and attention to detail.

3. Start Teaching About 3D Printing

While it can be argued that this doesn’t need a 3D printer, it’s still undeniable that people’s thirst for 3D printing knowledge is steadily rising. Even well-known educational institutions are expanding their 3D printing programs. The same drive can be seen among businesses that realize the indispensable and unprecedented advantages of a 3D printer.

There are always opportunities to get where there is high demand. You don’t even have to apply as a full-time teacher; although, this is certainly another route that should remain open for you. This is, of course, assuming you already have a firm grasp of 3D printing.

That being said, it’s definitely worth investing in increasing your knowledge of this technology. Once you establish your image as an expert, it won’t be surprising if interested students will flock to you in droves.

4.   Reach Out to Companies with Prototyping Services

Engineering and architectural firms, in particular, can’t get enough of prototyping services. Why? It lets them make a prototype of their ideas in a relatively short amount of time. It allows them to see any flaws they might not have considered during the planning phase so they can address them immediately. Without a doubt, the significant cost-cuts happened not without their appeal.

Of course, you shouldn’t limit yourself to engineers and architects. Virtually any business or industry that manufactures products or referential items from scratch can be a potential client.

The healthcare industry is also not off-limits. As we write this, prosthetics and other medical tools like surgical knives and drill guides are being printed regularly. The same goes for the manufacturing industry, transportation, and logistics. Did you know that engine parts are now being “printed” to boost productivity?

Obviously, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. And it’s safe to say that the applications of any 3D printer are only bound to become more robust and versatile in the future.


Indeed, 3D printers may very well be printing money with the numerous proven strategies you can start adopting now. Since the technology is now very accessible, it won’t take long for you to get the hang of it. If you have more queries, we’re more than willing to answer them ASAP. 

Author Bio

Alex Norwood is an experienced traveler and an online entrepreneur. He is very interested in technology and tries to implement it in his life. He runs a successful eCommerce business and is always on the lookout for new lucrative ways to make money online. 

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