I’m looking at a Chinese manufacturer of 3D printers I had not encountered previously: Luoyang Dowell Electronics Technology Co., Ltd, simply known as Dowell 3D.
There are a larger number of Asian companies producing low-cost desktop and large-scale 3D printers, and it’s difficult to keep track of them all. But over the last few years, many of them have iterated through multiple product designs to arrive today and machines that are often quite powerful.
And they often carry a very low price tag.
Dowell 3D was launched only five years ago, but has produced several desktop machines and even large format devices.
While many Asian 3D printer companies produce products that are effectively indistinguishable from each other, I noticed some different features on the Dowell 3D line.
Low priced 3D printers typically carry few features and are more or less “you get what you pay for” machines, where you’re trading savings for extra efforts.
Dowell 3D’s machines sport some interesting features that I didn’t expect to see, including:
- Fully assembled and tested
- Minimum layer resolution of 0.040mm, lower than most machine’s 0.100mm or even 0.050mm sizes
- Full color touch screen, although a bit small at 2.8 inches
- 80C polished aluminum heated print surface
- Linear rail motion system
- Out of filament detection
- Power outage handling and print resume
- Automatic power off after five minutes idle
- WiFi networking, with included app
- One year full warranty
- Free lifetime maintenance
One more thing I should mention: their website is actually quite usable for English readers, unlike so many that I’ve viewed. It seems that Dowell 3D really does wish to attract an international audience.
Those are not revolutionary features, as we’ve seen all of them on other machines. But here’s the interesting part: these machines are offered at rock-bottom prices, now available worldwide for export from China.
Their “D1” series, which includes all of the above features, ranges in price from USD$245 to USD$280 for the rather larger 180 x 190 x 400mm unit.
They have a more powerful D2 machine costing only USD$550 for a 300 x 300 x 300mm build volume.
Their “DM” series offers build volumes of up to 800 x 800 x 800mm with a maximum cost of only USD$1,730! These machines also include swappable nozzles with 0.2, 0.4, 0.6, 0.8 and 1.0mm diameters. Auto-leveling, a feature I’d like to see on the lower cost units, is available on the DM series for an additional USD$100.
Finally, Dowell 3D offers the “DL” series, which includes their highest build volume machines. The smallest in this series is the DL-1, with a build volume of 1000 x 1000 x 1000mm, costing only USD$2260 for an assembled unit. You can get an unassembled unit for even less at USD$1,770.
But their largest machine is the DL-4, whose gigantic build volume of 1600 x 1000 x 600mm can be had for only USD$2650. Autoleveling can be added for USD$50 and a second extruder for USD$70.
To put this in perspective, machines of this size from other manufacturers could cost as much as 10X more. And some would be even higher priced.
Now I must point out that these other higher priced vendors do have significant experience operating and building larger format 3D printers, which tend to have some peculiarities not found in smaller machines. Over time these vendors have refined their products to account for these differences. It’s possible that Dowell 3D has not reached that level of sophistication yet.
But they are at the same point these other companies were only a couple of years ago, so it will be extremely interesting to see how this plays out when they fully mature their large format offerings.
Via Dowell 3D