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Does the UPS Store Offer 3D Printing?

Does the UPS Store Offer 3D Printing? | 3D Printing Spot

Updated by

The Spot Team

/

August 12, 2020

Yes, the UPS Store offers 3D printing but only in limited locations, at least today.  3D printing is on the rise, emerging as a transformative technology that may well change the world.  More and more companies are jumping into the 3D printing marketplace every year and you can bet the national chains don’t want to miss out.  The UPS Store may just be leading the charge.

The UPS store caters to small business.  They offer the equipment, the services and even the knowledge to do many small functions small business cannot afford to house in a small office.  They become an extension of small business.  The UPS Store offers mailing, shipping, printing, scanning, faxing, copying, and every other simple office process so it only makes sense they would be one of the first to offer 3D printing.

3D printing is a natural fit for small business entrepreneurs.  It offers convenience and ease in develop, testing, and prototyping new products.  In the automotive world 3D printing has proven to be a life saver in printing repair parts and one of kind parts for older cars.  This same concept can translate to an office when a simple part breaks and you don’t know where to find it.  There is a definite need and 3D printing along with UPS Stores is beginning to fill that need.

However, you most likely won’t find 3D printing at your local UPS store today.  I know I recently visited my local UPS store and after writing this article looked around and saw no sign of 3D printing.  But be patient it will come.

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Table of contents:

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.

Prototype 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.

Accessory 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.

3D Software

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.

Summary

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?

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Does the UPS Store Offer 3D Printing?

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