"The 3Doodler Create + brings 3D creations made of wood and plastic to the top of your pen."
Specially developed for working with wood
Comes with a lot of accessories
Steep learning curve
Constant maintenance required
3Doodler has been in full swing since the surprising success of its Kickstarter campaign in 2013 and delivers an affordable 3D printing pen for the masses. There have been several iterations of the 3D printing pen since then, like 3Doodler 2.0 in 2015 and 3Doodler Create +, but the core idea has remained unchanged.
The company was very well received by educators, thanks in part to the marketing of the 3Doodler as a creative tool for various STEM classes and activities (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). In the same footsteps as the 3Doodler 2.0, which markets itself more to enthusiasts and professionals, the company's latest model, the 3Doodler Create + Leather Edition, is written as an executive office pen for 3D printing. Is it the only true 3D printing pen that masters them all?
Now in leather
If you look at the existing 3Doodler range of 3D printing pens, it is obvious that the designs are aimed at young people. They are simple, straightforward and designed for the task of drawing in 3D. However, the Leather Edition makes it clear that it is trying to attract enthusiasts who take 3D drawing seriously – those with creative talent. Similar to the 3Doodler 2.0 with an aluminum housing, the Leather Edition offers the same level of sophistication with its whiskey-tanned leather exterior.
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As much as the company claims a sense of refined elegance with its new 3D printing pen, the leather only contributes more to aesthetics than to usefulness. Ultimately, it still looks more like a tool and feels like it's a high-quality handwriting instrument.
Optimized for wood
Basically, it is similar to its predecessors in that the same plastic filaments (FLEXY, ABS and PLA) are melted to draw on surfaces and in the air. New in this model, it was specially developed for working with wood filaments – while the previous ones weren't necessarily meant for wood. The Leather Edition has been optimized from the ground up for working with wood as the main filament.
The wood adds to the variety that the pen is used to and gives projects a more natural look. They complement the decor and other bells and whistles that you might have lying around at home, but you'll have to go through a few trials and mistakes before you really get a good feel for wood drawing.
Master the technology
We tried to create some wood creations using the included project guide, which contains tips for beginners on how to use the 3Doodler optimally. There's definitely a learning curve if you've never used one. In fact, finding the right writing pace to get the best results was a bigger challenge for us. If you move too fast, you will get thin pieces of plastic that will not give your creations structural support. If you move too slowly, thick clumps are formed.
In contrast to some plastic filaments, which cool down relatively quickly when pulled out to allow suction in the air, the wood filaments do not harden immediately. After we had mastered the technology, we were able to create some rough creations with the 3Doodler Create + Leather Edition. We recommend using the matte side of the supplied Mini DoodlePad surface, mainly because the wood filaments are easier to remove. Without the step-by-step guide for wood projects, we would have no idea how best to use the 3D printing pen. We used it to make a money clip and a wooden figure of eight.
John Velasco / Digital Trends
In simple solid wood projects, they start as 2D creations. For more complex projects, 2D parts are welded together with the 3Doodler until they have reached the desired shape. In our situation, we created a model of the Eiffel Tower by fusing 2D parts of the shiny PLA filaments that came with the package, and then adding additional details and support using the wood filaments. What is nice is that all the filaments fuse well together.
Maintenance, servicing, maintenance
In order to keep the 3Doodler in perfect condition, it must be serviced regularly by ensuring that the filaments are completely removed after each use. You don't want it to be idle for a while as the heated filament cools down in the nozzle. It is therefore important that all of the material is ejected. Detaching the unused filament is an easy process, as you can simply press one of the two buttons twice to reverse it, instead of forcibly removing it by pulling.
John Velasco / Digital Trends
For advanced users, the Leather Edition also comes with a nozzle set that contains 6 more heads to add even more variety when the filaments come out of the nozzle. They help to improve projects with the different patterns and strengths they provide. Although our special creations appear coarse, these nozzles can help give those who have mastered their drawing techniques more precision and cleaner surfaces.
Get $ 120 back with the 3Doodler Create + Leather Edition, $ 40 more than the current 3Doodler Create + 3D pen. It is also worth noting that this is the first time that the wood filament packs and the nozzle set have been included in the packaging. While the thought of a 3D printing pen still attracts attention so people can draw in the air, the 3Doodler Create + Leather Edition remains an artistic tool for those who are serious about their creations. You won't do anything elaborate or ornate, but at least you can create some unique handmade ornaments with a personal touch.
Is there a better alternative?
If you're reliant on cash, retailers like Amazon have several cheaper options. You could pick them up, but 3Doodler has built a solid reputation and ecosystem to support its deployment over the years.
How long it will take?
Frequent maintenance is required for the 3Doodler Create + Leather Edition to work properly. However, a one-year guarantee is granted.
Should you buy it
If you have no artistic background, you are unlikely to use it religiously. If you do this, it is an option you should think about, as all possible creations use the plastic and wood filaments available to you. You can also explore the different types of filaments and project ideas on the 3Doodler website. You no longer have to reorder filaments and get inspiration for your next project. There is already the 3Doodler Start 3D printing pen for teenagers and educators, but the sophisticated look of the 3Doodler Create + Leather Edition makes it a tool for enthusiasts who want to take the time to master the techniques required to create artworks.