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3Doodler Pen FAQ: All You Need to Know About It

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by All3DP
Aug 22, 2016

The 3Doodler is a great tool to get creative in 3D. If you are new to 3D pens or do have a question regarding 3Doodler, you should check this FAQ. 

3D pens are great fun, and 3Doodler is no exception. In this FAQ, are the most important questions answered. There are four sections you can jump to:

  1. Before you buy
  2. Start and basic usage
  3. Troubleshooting 
  4. Safety

If you want to have questions answered in this 3Doodler FAQ, please add yours to the comments.

1. 3Doodler FAQ: Before You Buy

3Doodler FAQ #1: What does 3Doodler do?

Its a 3D drawing device. Think of a glue gun that uses plastic strands instead of glue. The heated plastic strand is extruded from the tip whenever you press the botton. This lets you “draw into thin air” and create three-dimensional objects. 

3Doodler FAQ #2: How many versions are there?

There are two versions. The original came out in 2013 after a highly successful Kickstarter campaign. It’s not officially sold anymore, but you might run into it on eBay.

In January 2015, an improved version was successfully funded on Kickstarter. “3Doodler Create” yielded more than $1.5 million. Updates include an option for changing the size and shape of the tip, a smaller design, and a quieter fan.

3Doodler FAQ #3: How much does the 3D pen cost?

As of August 2016, the 3Doodler Create costs $99 on Amazon US Store. You have to add taxes according to the country you live.

Check price of 3Doodler Create at Amazon

3Doodler FAQ #4: Can I use other brands of  plastic strands for my pen?

The company makes it very clear that it is important to only use 3Doodler strands. By using other materials, you void your warranty and may cause damage to the pen. This has been a major frustration for many users and has been highly discussed on social networks like Reddit.

3Doodler FAQ #5: Are there alternatives to the original?

Yes! As soon as 3Doodler started on Kickstarter, the company faced a lot of competition. Now there are a lot of 3D pens to choose from. In fact, we found a whopping 60 competitors on Amazon, but most of them are clones. Some offer the same functions and comparable quality as the original but have a much lower price tag.

You can sort and search through all 3D pens in this table. Or you can skip this table and jump directly to the detailed descriptions of the best 3D pens.

3Doodler FAQ #6: Are there accessories available?

Yes, there are. You can buy a doodle pad with stencils, a stand, a new nozzle set, a powerpack, a project book and a pedal.

2. FAQ: 3Doodler Start and Basic Usage

3Doodler FAQ #7: What colors can I choose from?

The 3D pen comes in five different colors:

  • Blue
  • Green
  • Pink
  • Sapphire Blue
  • Yellow

Currently, the company offers a variety of colors and finishes for their 3D printing strands. All in all, there are 65 plastic colors and a great range of materials, including matte, glossy, clear, glow, flexy and sparkle.

3Doodler Pen FAQ Colors

3Doodler FAQ #8: What materials can I use?

Currently, there are two 3D pen materials to choose from: PLA and ABS.

The 3D pens are designed to have two different temperature settings, as PLA melts at a lower temperature than ABS. The temperature will depend on the material in use at the time of the doodling. This means you need to be sure which plastic you are using and set the right temperature on your pen.

3Doodler FAQ #9: Can I leave the plastic in the pen when I turn it off?

This is not advised. By leaving hot plastic in your pen, the degradation of the plastic is accelerated and can cause many different problems with the pen.

3Doodler FAQ #10: How will I know when I need to load more plastic into the pen?

You are likely to notice very quickly when you need more plastic. This is because the pen will begin to slow down and plastic will stop being extruded.

3Doodler FAQ #11: What do the LED lights on my pen mean?

The red light indicates that the pen has not been used for a while, or that it is simply heating up.  means the pen is warming up, or has been idle for while. Green is always ready to go. If you are reversing the strand, then the light will flash. A flashing yellow light is a warning that you should charge the pen, or that the pen is charging. Once the 3D pen is fully charged, the light will be a solid yellow.

3Doodler FAQ #12: How long can I use my device?

The pen is a sturdy and awesome tool, but like any mechanical device, it needs a break now and then. It‘s suggested giving it some downtime after two hours of continuous use (just 30mins or so).

3Doodler FAQ #13: Can I paint on my doodles?

3Doodler Pen FAQ
As soon as your doodle has dried, you can begin decorating and beautifying your print. Options for this could include anything which adheres to the plastic, such as spray paint of acrylic paints.

This is totally up to you and how you use the pen. You can make pretty strong doodles by creating supporting structures. If you create thick pieces, these will also be stronger too. You can do this by going over an area a few times.

If you’re hoping to do the opposite then you can use fewer layers and create more flexible strands very easily too. Simply practice your skills.

3Doodler FAQ #15: Can I use it for repairs?

Yes, sure! Users are finding many different and creative ways in which the doodler can be used for repairs. As a plastic welding tool, it can repair your previous 3D prints, or anything made from ABS plastic.

3Doodler FAQ #16: How long will a plastic pack last?

Impressively, a single strand of plastic will stretch to ten times its length. The math behind this means for every Eco-Plastic Strand (6 inches / 15 cm), you get 60 inches / 150cm of Doodling. This should be enough to last you and your child for hours.

3Doodler FAQ #17: How long can I wirelessly use my pen for?

You can use it for 45 minutes to an hour, once it has been fully charged. However, you can continue doodling even while the device is plugged in too.

3Doodler FAQ #18: How do I reverse a plastic strand?

All you need to do is to double click the Orange Button. This will then reverse a plastic strand when you want to switch color.

3Doodler Pen FAQ shark

3. FAQ: Troubleshooting

3Doodler FAQ #19: I can’t start drawing in the air, right?

This skill is one which requires some practice. However, all you need to do is to simply anchor the doodle to a sheet of paper. You can then press down to create a blob on the page. Simply make sure to plastic is stuck firmly and lift off the pen. When you reach the ideal height, you should stop the pen and hold it in place. This allows the doodle to harden.

3Doodler Pen FAQ draw

3Doodler FAQ #20: How do I get plastic to stick to paper?

If you are having problems, simply try  holding the pen closer to the page. Once there is a blob of extruded plastic on the paper, it has been anchored.

3Doodler FAQ #21: Why don’t my Doodles look any good?

It may take you quite some time to master the skill. But as with everything, practice makes perfect.By using the tool regularly, you’re likely to find your skills improve quickly. Don’t give up. There are also some helpful tutorial videos which you can follow on the official website.

3Doodler FAQ #22: Does my device require maintenance?

You will find that the pen is pretty much maintenance free, but if you have any problems such as jams and blockages, it may be due to leaving plastic in the pen after you have used it.

3Doodler FAQ #23: What should I do if the plastic is moving slowly?

You may find that if you are coming to the end of a strand of plastic, the extrusion will considerably slow down. But don’t worry as all you need to do is to put a new strand into the back. If this is still working slowly, simply push the strand further down.

3Doodler FAQ #24: Are there templates getting creative?

Yes, there are. The manufacturer offers a Stencil Archive which you can use for free. Also, you can find several great project ideas in the official community.

4. FAQ: Safety

3Doodler Pen FAQ gal_2
3Doodler FAQ #25: Is it safe for my young child?

This pen is not safe to leave with your children. The recommended age is 14+, and you should never leave your younger children unattended. This is because the metal tip of the pen can get as hot as 240C. This can result in severe skin burns.

3Doodler FAQ #26: Can I use my pen on skin?

Definitely do not try this – you will burn yourself.

3Doodler FAQ #27: Does the Start plastic emit any harmful fumes?

The company promises that their Eco-Plastic is non-toxic, BPA-free, and completely biodegradable in your household compost. They even recommend getting yourself a plant pot to keep the used plastic in as the 3Doodler Start Eco-Plastic will break down in around 45 days when in contact with soil.

3Doodler FAQ #28: Can I touch the plastic when it comes out of the pen?

You should find that you are able to touch the plastic when it emerges from the pen, but it will still be warm.

3Doodler Pen FAQ doodle

License: The text of "3Doodler Pen FAQ: All You Need to Know About It" by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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