France-based Deltaface has produced 3D print preparation software that could save you some money.
The software, called “CORUO” is focused on dental 3D printing. It accepts standard dental 3D models and modifies them to have smaller total 3D volumes, yet still be printable with full function.
This is a very important change, because most dental 3D printers and services charge based on the volume of the print. And this is very true for both 3D print services that calculate the volume of the 3D model to compute their charges, as well as those who operate their own desktop dental 3D printers. In that case, you pay for resin again based on volume - by the bottle.
3D printer resin is often spectacularly expensive due to massive markups by some manufacturers, as we uncovered earlier this year.
Another benefit is speed: less volume sometimes means faster printing, depending on the technology used. However, if you’re using a 3D print service and waiting a day or two for delivery, this won’t make any difference.
How does CORUO accomplish this? The software provides a number of easy-to-use editing procedures that make it very easy to trim excess volume from an object. There are controls to select portions of the 3D model using the cursor, planes and other methods.
Here’s a video that provides a taste of their functionality:
I’ve seen these kinds of functions in other software previously, but many times they are challenging to use and mixed in with tons of other functions that might be confusing to a dental technician whose skills are not necessarily 3D modeling. CORUO is focused solely on dental technicians.
Deltaface offers online purchase of CORUO for €1,200 (USD$1,350), which sounds a bit pricey - however, remember that the price of 3D printer resin can be over USD$200 per liter. If you’re able to save half that price you’re going to be positive cash in short order.