September 27, 2020
dremel digilab 3d printers

Dremel Digilab 3D Printers Review: Printers, Filaments, Software

Dremel Digilabs 3D printers have quietly become known as some of the best 3D printers on the market, owing to their reliability, speed, and Dremel’s long-lasting positive brand reputation – they’ve been in the manufacturing game since 1932.

In 1932 the Great Depression had caused economic destruction and unemployment was at record heights. Many will know however that in dire times fantastic innovations and opportunities can be seized by those bold enough. Dremel is the result of this boldness and seized opportunity. Founded by Albert J. Dremel in Racine, Wisconsin selling rotary tools — saws, glue guns and mechanical screwdrivers — the American company has come far in its 87-year existence. Now in the age of the fourth industrial revolution Dremel has again been pivoting, creating some very interesting Dremel Digilab 3D printers.

This article will discuss all the current 3D printer Dremel Digilab models: the 3D45, 3D40 FLEX and EDU, and the 3D20. Additionally, we will also discuss Dremel’s own 3D printer filaments and their 3D software options and how they relate to their education-driven offering.

Dremel DigiLab 3D Printers

Dremel DigiLab 3D45

Dremel’s most expensive 3D printer, the 3D45 features a number of time-saving and useful extras such as an enclosed build chamber for better safety and temperature control, heated build plate to avoid warping, and direct drive extruder. This extruder better equips the 3D45 for the variety of filaments its supports, with its heated plate assisting when printing more difficult 3D printer filaments like Nylon or PETG. What’s more, not only can you use Dremel’s own filaments that have their own RFID to instantly adapt to the correct settings, but the 3D45 also accepts third party filaments too.

It’s super easy to connect with – either via WiFi, ethernet, or just stick an SD card in. If not, the 3D45 has 8GB internal memory which is more than enough to store any STL files or any other 3D printer model files.

dremel digilab 3d45 3d printer
The Dremel DigiLab 3D45 is the most versatile option, able to print 4 different filament materials.

In addition, Dremel are thinking about you, the customer, and have fitted a carbon filter. No more chemical smells or toxic fumes; the filter renders them mute.

The reviews have been mostly positive, praising the Dremel DigiLab 3D45’s reliability and grit. Very rarely does the 3D45 appear to fail prints, especially when using PLA filament, and is considered ideal for classrooms for teaching, or for rapid prototyping.

However, some have pointed out that the 3D45 can struggle when using other filaments such as Nylon. This can cause less than perfect print finishes, and is thought to be worse when using third party filaments. Overall however, the 3D45 is a great option for those who want an easy-to-use and reliable 3D printer, with its simple RFID filament setup making it perfect for schools and workshops.

Here’s a 20-minute, very interesting review by Tested’s Sean for more insight:

Dremel DigiLab 3D40 FLEX

Featuring a number of upgrades on the previous 3D40 model including being 30% faster, the 3D40 FLEX is a really powerful 3D printer for its price. It’s reliable, features a touchscreen, and now accepts third party filaments.

The Dremel DigiLab 3D40 FLEX has the same maximum print volume as the 3D45, but beyond this there are some subtle differences between the two. For example, the 3D40 FLEX is 5kg lighter at 16kg, and can only print PLA rather than the four different filaments printable on the 3D45.

Perhaps the most innovative feature of the 3D40 however is the flexible build plate. This potentially makes a huge difference to how a finished print can look, as scraping finished prints can cause damage to them as well as the plate itself. Therefore, the flexible plate creates better prints, saves time, and also keeps the print plate in better condition for longer.

dremel digilab 3d40 flex 3d printer

Dremel DigiLab 3D40 EDU

Very similar to the 3D40 FLEX except that it’s geared towards schools and general education application, Dremel have worked hard to design the printer alongside ISTE standards certifiable across all US states.

Because it’s so easy to use, the 3D40 EDU is perfect for teaching students about 3D designing models on 3D software, the basics of rapid prototyping, engineering, structure, and having fun with 3D printing! Dremel also designed custom software to complement their focus on education, which we’ll come to later on.

dremel digilab 3d40 edu

Dremel DigiLab 3D20

The baby of the group but by no means weak, the Dremel DigiLab 3D20 is plucky and reliable. It’s got built-in cooling to stop any potential warping or layering errors during print (as well as safety benefits), increasing the chances of a good quality print.

Like the Dremel 3D45, it has an enclosed print chamber. This keeps the Dremel 3D printer quiet when printing, as well as keeping you protected and safe.

Unlike the 3D45 or 3D40, it’s not connectable by WiFi or ethernet, so you’ll have to make do with an SD card or resort to its 4GB internal memory. Despite this, the 3D20 is still a solid buy for the price, and beginners who value reliability and consistency will appreciate it.

dremel digilab 3d20 3d printer
Dremel’s introductory model, the 3D20, is a reliable and well priced printer.

Dremel 3D Software: Dremel DigiLab 3D Slicer

Dremel DigiLab 3D Slicer might look familiar to a few experienced makers, and that’s no surprise. It’s based on the fantastic open-source Cura slicer, so you can slice your files to send to your Dremel 3D printer as well as any other 3D printers you use Cura for – a very useful bonus.

It’s also got an offline mode, so those who like to tinker with 3D printer models on the go, or those with less than reliable internet connections, it’s perfect. Overall, it can be navigated with ease by novice students and experienced makers alike, so beginners shouldn’t be intimidated by it. This makes it a great introductory software for students and those generally new to 3D printing.

dremel digilab 3d slicer
Based on the widely used Cura slicer, Dremel Digilab 3D Slicer is simple to navigate and makes printing custom models a breeze.

Dremel 3D Printer Filaments

Dremel offer four filaments for sale (PLA, Eco-ABS, Nylon and PETG), all the filaments compatible with their most versatile 3D printer, the Dremel Digilabs 3D45.

For PLA your choice of color is far more open, with options ranging from white, black, blue, red, orange, pink, gold, silver, green, purple and translucent. For the others however, you’re restricted to either black or white for Eco-ABS, only black for Nylon, and only translucent for PETG.

To conclude, Dremel have quietly assembled a stellar range of modestly priced 3D printers that perform well and consistently. Time will tell how the American manufacturer fares in the future, but for now all looks healthy and encouraging.