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3D Hubs Pricing should be by machine hours and material not volume

Businesses do not charge for volume on prints as it does not directly reflect the costs and leave a know value for margin in 3D printing.

The quote model should quote an expected print time (machine hours) plus the expected cost of material. It is impossible to guess and some parts are quoted quite low by volume but are much more expensive to print.

I just had a quote for a massive part but it had very thin walls and therefore was quoted at $150 when just my material and electricity cost exceeded $400 for this part.

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    Matt RMatt R shared this idea  ·   ·  Admin →
    declined  ·  3D HubsAdmin3D Hubs (Founder, 3D Hubs) responded  · 

    We do see the value of pricing by machine time. However this would need printing profiles on a hub level as the machine time is dependent on the machine and slicer used. Unfortunately this would mean a technical overhaul of the system that would take us months to complete, so we’d prefer to stick with the current system that’s based on geometry dependent parameters for now.

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      • MvMMvM commented  · 

        I do agree with you that the 3D Hubs pricing calculations are most often not correct.
        Usually, they are too low for most prints I do. Thin shells and low infill are fine for decorative prints, but in many cases, my orders are about functional parts which need more strength that is offered with the standard settings.

        However, the pricing method can vary between Hubs according to their wishes.

        Personally, I use a calculated price per gram (so, price by weight).
        My prices includes everything for me (material, time and electricity). This makes calculations much easier.

        But for starters, 3D Hubs should/could make clear to the customer that their price calculations are only an INDICATION and that the Hubs will adjust if necessary.

      • Anonymous commented  · 

        I think there should be two options. I prefer part size rather than time. Hubs should select witch method they want.

      • Bo HerrmannsenBo Herrmannsen commented  · 

        having said this i think it could be done by adding a cloudslicer and then the hub can upload their slicer config

        of course not all slicers can be added, but at least we would then have better tool than trying to do all sorts of fancy tricks to get our hours spent paid

      • Bo HerrmannsenBo Herrmannsen commented  · 

        i do excatly this without any issue

        i have my start cost set
        then i use object volume to set filament cost, i simply enter my raw cm3 cost for the filament.
        for time i use surface area... its a bit tricky but i download the 10cm marvin and get an time estimate in my slicer... then i adjust the price for surface so i get a payout that matches the filament and hours spent.

        i repeat that for the small marvin until i get a payout that matches

        its a bit trial and error to get the surface price right

      • Ben KettleBen Kettle commented  · 

        Agreed. Maybe 3Dhubs should have a built-in slicer where we can upload our own profiles.

      • Michael FranchinoMichael Franchino commented  · 

        There are ways to do this pricing. The pricing that you give should include the filament, run time of your printer (electricity), the printer itself cost, some of your time. The hub's price is based on 20% infill, if that is not clear, you have to let your customer know that it will go up if you want 90% or 100%. I do 90% of my prints on my SLA printer for my hub, and my pricing is calculated for ALL costs in the 1ML price. Resin, Tank, Gloves, Alcohol, Electricity, printer cost, etc. I have a SS that is quite extensive. I also added a provision for some support, but I am almost always adding $10-$20 for support to an order.

      • Sergio RomeroSergio Romero commented  · 

        This should be top priority, in two weeks I have lost 3 prints because the pricing was completely out of wack, It doesnt help either when the pricing model does not account for support material and infil %.
        One of my lost prints was because a client needed 90% infill and .1 resolution (FDM) and the quote he got from the platform was ony $64 US, after making my own calculations the part should have been $198 US, as I adjusted the price the client just fled...
        If this isnt sorted out we all loose!

      • Anonymous commented  · 

        I highly agree on this suggestions since the pricing isn't biased to neither print time nor material usage. Having to be able to set both parameters for the final print cost would give an accurate value to the print and will benefit both low volume and high volume prints.

      • Eli WilsonEli Wilson commented  · 

        I think this would be great to see as an additional pricing detail just like bounding box, surface area, and subsequent prints.

      • Sergio RomeroSergio Romero commented  · 

        I agree, this is the way we price out prints. Also of note is that the price by volume does not take into account sacrificial material, that needs to be billed too.

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