How many UPS Stores offer 3D printing?
Currently there are only 20 stores out of 5000 plus UPS Stores nationwide that offer 3D printing. However, the fact they are beginning to roll out this offering is an indicator of growing demand. 3D printing isn’t slowing down so you are likely to see it in your local UPS Store soon.
Just to give you an idea of where you might find the 3D printing service, here is a list of states and the number of UPS Stores offering 3D printing. For exact store locations you can visit the UPS Store Locations list.
Arizona – 2 stores
California – 3 stores
Colorado – 1 store
Florida – 2 stores
Georgia – 1 store
Hawaii – 1 store
Illinois – 3 stores
Massachusetts – 1 store
New York – 1 store
Ohio – 1 store
Pennsylvania – 1 store
Texas – 2 stores
Wisconsin – 1 store
What 3D printing services will the UPS Store offer?
The UPS store aims to cover all basis of 3D printing, so their services include design through printing.
Here is a brief explanation of the types of services they offer surround 3D printing.
If you already have a 3D object file of your next great product idea, then it will be easy to pop in the store, give them the file, and let them print it. Never before has it been so easy to do business, just walk down the street.
Replacement Part Printing
As previously mentioned, 3D printing jigs, fixtures and parts essential in your design and testing processes will be a snap with the UPS store. What previously required CNC machines now will be easier and quicker to produce with 3D printing.
Small businesses are unique in so many ways, and owners want to be different. Imagine printing your own money clip, phone case or other accessories that brand you and your company in a whole new way.
3D CAD/3D Scanning Services
The UPS Store has partnered with HoneyPoint3D to make it easy to quote, engineer and view your very own custom 3D files online and ultimately print in a quick and easy manner.
The UPS Store has partnered with Netfabb software, to allow preparation and customization for file fixing, text labeling, logo labeling and cutting.
What is 3D printing?
This 3D printing idea may be new to you. So here is 3D printing in simple terms everyone can understand.
3D printing is called additive manufacturing because it creates objects by adding material layer by layer.
Think of a hot glue gun. The glue gun heats the glue, and then by moving the gun around you can place the glue exactly where you need it. 3D printing is much the same. You heat the filament (think glue) through an extruder (think glue gun) while the extruder moves around placing the liquified filament exactly where needed. By repeating this cycle, you add layer upon layer of material on top of each other until you have a full 3D object.
3D printing differs from traditional manufacturing in that it adds material to make an object rather than taking away material (subtractive) in traditional manufacturing. Traditional manufacturing works by taking a block of steel and with a CNC machine carving away (subtractive) material until the object is formed.
How long does it take to 3D print something?
Time varies based on the complexity of your design. Don’t plan to hang around, as even simple objects will take an hour or more; while, complicated objects may take up to 24 hours. The best part is the UPS Store will manage it for you so you can get on with more important things.
What can I print at the UPS Store?
Creativity may be your only limitation in what you can print. But to get the creativity going the UPS Store will offer 3D printers capable of printing things like acting props, 6architectural models, parts for cameras, lights and cables, and certainly functional prototypes.
How much will it cost to 3D print at the UPS Store?
This depends on the object you are trying to print. But rest assured it will be more affordable than you think. An iPhone case may cost $60, a replica bone may be close to $325. The longer it takes to print and the more material required will determine the price of your printed object.
The UPS Stores may be one of the first retail type chains to offer 3D printing but others will follow. Amazon has also done work in the 3D printing arena.
What has been consistent is the increase in demand. If you build it, they will come holds true with this new 3D printing technology. The companies that have offered 3D printing have all seen demand increase.
As demand increases, competition increases and that is good for you, as it will drive the price down. Someday, 3D printing will be a household name as common as the paper printer. You will be asking what can I print today?