TCO of your printer (total cost of ownership)

HI Everyone

I was answering another thread and had a thought about the total cost of ownership of your printer.

Wondering if any specific printers are better than others.

I was thinking about the total cost of getting it to what anyone would consider a decent printer. for example, I have a bunch of Ender 3 Pros, from the initial purchase to upgraded springs, direct drives, Bowden tube replacement and average it out over say 2 years. I know the printer will last longer than that but just for numbers, let’s use the first 2 years only.

Here is what I am included - Cost of the machine, Essential upgrades, Required repairs

Here is the breakdown of my machines.

Ender 3/Pro - $26.25 a month
Ender 3 V2 - 23.90 a month (haven’t had this one 2 years yet)
Ender 5 Plus - $39.80 a month
CR10-Max - $81.66 a month
PRUSA Bear (MK3s) - $78.90
Custom Build Ender 3 Clone - $32.20
PRUSA Clone MK2 - $82.13

Can you figure in how many Kg’s of filament you’ve gone through on them in that time?

Lets do Printer for now, We can do filament next, i know that one will hurt.

Unless its filiment for the parts you printed for that machine, then include it.

In 2 years for my Ender 3 I purchased a SeeMeCNC EZR extruder ($35 American + shipping $15) = $50 American and I upgrader the springs $10 and capricorn tubes $18. It’s still Bowden. Initial printer purchase was $300. I’m guessing $17.00 a month. I’m not big on upgrades.

Filament probably $30 a month.

Well, my thinking is the cost of ownership doesn’t mean much unless you can also compare the output, If we both have the same printer but you’ve put $200 of mods on it then there could be more throughput to justify it. eventually, there will be a number that represents the maximum amount of output you can possibly get before the machine is not economical anymore to repair or maintain or there is clearly a better machine to have.


I Should do this too “for fun”
I’d probulary be angry with myself on costs and $$ spent.

Cars, Computers, 3D printers are my Crutch.
I Don’t drunk or smoke, so this will be A LOT cheaper!!

I just did this earlier in the week for the E5Pro.
Total purchase and parts: $646.36. Some parts were bought in packs and remain mostly unsed.
Total Filament: $573.06 only about 40% of it used so far.

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