Review of the brand new 3Doodler Create+ 3D Printing Pen. If you’re looking for a 3D printing pen, you’ll love the control and ease of use this one offers.
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3D printing pens have always intrigued me, and this summer my kids and I were lucky enough to review both of 3Doodler’s 3D printing pens. The kid-oriented 3Doodler Start was a huge hit with my kids, so what did we think of the Create+?
3Doodler Create+ Review
The 3Doodler Create+ is a sophisticated 3D printing pen that can be used with both PLA and ABS plastic. I was really impressed with the control this pen allows users. Even my eight-year-old was able to create the drawings and writing that you see above. Note: the 3Doodler Create+ gets very hot and is recommended for ages 12 and older. I let my three older kids give it a go under my supervision. They are all experienced crafters who use all sorts of adult tools all the time, with supervision. If you want a 3D printing pen that is completely kid-safe, get the 3Doodler Start, which does not get hot enough to burn anyone. The 3Doodler Start is also completely smell free; you get the standard 3D printing melting plastic smell using the 3Doodler Create+, so I recommend using it in a well-ventilated room. The 3Doodler Create+ allows for more detailed work; you have more control and it’s definitely better for freehand scupture making (see photos below for examples of some of the things we made).
How to Use a 3D Printing Pen
Unlike 3D printers, which require programs and leveling and other details, 3D printing pens are incredibly intuitive you use. Basically, you use the 3D printing pen exactly the way you would use a regular pen. Of course, the 3D element of the pen means that you can use it to write up as well as across a page. You can also create several flat pieces and then fuse them together to create a 3D object.
My kids loved drawing objects with a pencil on paper and then bringing them to life with the 3D pen. Above, 12-year-old Emma colors in a whale drawn by 10-year-old Johnny; the completed 3D printed whale is in the photo above this one. Emma drew right on the paper, then popped it off after everything had cooled off.
Pro tip: Make sure you wait until the creation has cooled completely to prevent accidentally pulling off bits of paper. If you do pull off bits of paper, they can be removed by soaking your creation in water for a few minutes.
My five-year-old daughter drew this elephant using a Sharpie pen; I traced it for her. It was one of our first 3D printing attempts, and you can see where I pulled it off the paper too soon. I think the Sharpie pen may have transferred regardless, so we now recommend using a pencil instead of a Sharpie pen.
Creating 3D Projects Using a 3D Printing Pen
Of course, the whole point of 3D printing is to create 3D objects. We have plans to explore the building of objects by combining several flat pieces once we’re done with our summer in Scotland. In the meantime, we’re having a lot of fun creating small sculptures using the 3Doodler Create+.
These tiny cats and dogs are a great example of just how much control this pen allows for! I started creating tiny animals, and my 12-year-old, 10-year-old, and 8-year-old were soon able to mimic the process. What a fun way to create custom Monopoly pieces!
If you’re looking to try out 3D printing, the 3Doodler Create+ is a great place to start! I especially recommend it as a way for kids aged 12 and older to explore design and structures. I know I’ll enjoy playing with it more, too!