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Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?

Posted by David J 
Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
March 25, 2017 05:22AM
I have nearly run out of 1.75mm white PLA, so I decided to buy another reel... and what a performance that turned out to be!

Looked at my usual supplier, HobbyKing, as their stuff has been cheap and good enough for what I want to do - the UK warehouse has hardly any stock in any colour, and buying from their main Hong Kong warehouse would mean waiting 3 or 4 weeks and paying shipping costs almost double the cost of the filament. So I started looking through my 10 or 15 bookmarks for filament suppliers, and found that they are either out of stock, or charging much, more than they used to. I found one or two that had unknown quality stuff at lower prices, but I was unsure about that stuff. Even ebay suppliers seem to be out of stock in the common colours.

I have now ordered a 1Kg reel at an acceptable price from a reputable supplier, but it took some finding.

Does anyone know of a supply problem? Or is it simply a case of demand exceeding supply?
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
March 25, 2017 08:44AM
Please see the thread on excelvan group buy it highlights the problems. There is no reliable UK budget filament. Whether it is demand outstripping supply, sounds plausible but prices haven't skyrocketed.


Simon.

[www.precisionpiezo.co.uk] Accurate, repeatable, versatile z-probe plus piezo discs, endstop cables, pt100, 50w heaters. PT1000 cartridge sensors plug straight into duet boards and others.
Published:Inventions
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
March 25, 2017 11:54AM
Can't say its a problem I have... I use Colorfabb though and I also get a 25% discount on top (3Dhubs has some benefits winking smiley ), makes it around £20 a spool. Cheaper if you bulk buy the economy packs. Its still more expensive then some of this dirt cheap stuff, but ever since finding chunks of metal in one that were 3x times the diameter of the filament.... is it worth it?

EDIT: I can also get the Colorfabb economy for £25 a spool, and that is a 2.2kg spool.....

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/25/2017 11:57AM by Origamib.
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
March 25, 2017 01:36PM
That's interesting I get the 3dhubs discount but haven't tried it yet. Is the economy large spool the same filament?


Simon.

[www.precisionpiezo.co.uk] Accurate, repeatable, versatile z-probe plus piezo discs, endstop cables, pt100, 50w heaters. PT1000 cartridge sensors plug straight into duet boards and others.
Published:Inventions
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
March 26, 2017 07:57AM
I havn't tried economy yet, as far as I know it is just PLA and not their PLA /PHA combo.

I wouldn't mind investing in the large bundle packs as that really reduces the price, and it comes with 4 special filaments. Perhaps people would be interested in a bulk buy of colorfabb?
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
April 03, 2017 03:02AM
I went shopping for 1.75mm ABS in the bay and found most chinese suppliers are out of any ABS in 1.75 diameter ::8
But there is plenty of ( old stock ? ) 3mm filament for 1/3 the price I had to pay now for German branded 1.75 ABS.

Now thinking about using a Volcano hotend with 3mm filament instead.
Wouldn't that be a better combo anyway?
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
April 03, 2017 05:32AM
Yeah havent you heard when the stocks of 1.75 & 3mm run out they will bring out 1mm & 4mm just so we have to buy more bits.
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
August 24, 2017 05:25AM
goodbye Excelvan it was fun while it lasted,
the second to last print rolling off the production line, I'll squeeze just one more part out of it.
then i'll have to try out these other PLA's the new black I just got cheap reports tollerance better than what Excelvan was,
so it will be interesting to see how it compares.

This was running really sweet, [www.facebook.com]
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
August 24, 2017 05:50AM
I just got a roll of Tianese filament to try, £17.99 kg for 1.75mm PLA from Amazon.

or eSun PLA is available on ebay for about £17.99 + £4.50 p&p


DC42 Kossel 330mm x 2meters
My Thingiverse Creations
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
August 24, 2017 05:51AM
Yes I really liked excelvan too. That being said since it dried up, I've not struggled to find reasonable budget filament in the £15-20 range which works fine.


Simon.

[www.precisionpiezo.co.uk] Accurate, repeatable, versatile z-probe plus piezo discs, endstop cables, pt100, 50w heaters. PT1000 cartridge sensors plug straight into duet boards and others.
Published:Inventions
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
August 24, 2017 06:26AM
I have no real experience of any others, except the one time I had stuff done on an Ultimaker, which by comparison are crap compared to these Very Solid Parts, obviously it has more to do with the slicer settings chosen on the Ultimaker, and them trying to do a quick job. Some sellers have what looks like Excelvan, ie same spool but they where £20 out of hong kong, but I got another for £10.99, in
the review this guy said he was happy with print but not with colour, instead of white I think it was translucent, but will see how the black goes, on same settings, Can't wait to get into a new roll as most of the parts I want to print now are bigger, stuff I've been leaving till I swapped the bed over.
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
August 24, 2017 06:53AM
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
August 24, 2017 07:02AM
Ha! Thread reactivation!

As it happens, HobbyKing started to re-stock PLA & ABS filament a few weeks after my original post, so my problem has gone away.
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
August 24, 2017 09:18AM
My Cheap Roll arrived its shinier than excelvan, in a box with CTC on it not sealed and no silica, and doesnt snap as easy as the Ex'van.
Hope the Prints dont come out this shiny, I think it makes it look even cheaper. thats what I was liking about the Ex'van, almost matt/silk, I want to try a real matt one at sometime, wonder if I can get some VantaBlack Powder in there too.
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
August 24, 2017 02:01PM
So my last roll lasted over 5 months, wondering how many rolls you guys have used in that time smiling smiley
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
August 24, 2017 02:42PM
Hard to say, I've about 15 on the go and swap them quite often so how long it takes to use a kilo of filament maybe a month....


Simon.

[www.precisionpiezo.co.uk] Accurate, repeatable, versatile z-probe plus piezo discs, endstop cables, pt100, 50w heaters. PT1000 cartridge sensors plug straight into duet boards and others.
Published:Inventions
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
August 24, 2017 06:13PM
I'm very happy with filament from rigidink at present, but it's not a budget filament. Their PLA has excellent adhesion to both PEI and plain glass, both heated. Their PLA+ sticks too well to all the bed surfaces I use, but if you have bed adhesion issues then it might be just the thing you need.



Large delta printer [miscsolutions.wordpress.com], Robotdigg SCARA printer, Crane Quad and Ormerod

Disclosure: I design Duet electronics and work on RepRapFirmware, [duet3d.com].
Re: Is there a problem with PLA filament supplies in the UK?
August 24, 2017 06:50PM
I had just sorted out first layer, on last few parts(with some intermittent success in previous prints), & especially the one in vid ( i had a little trouble getting that one free), but then in order to use up the roll I thought the next very last prints would be hassle free, but I had 1 fail and second only just made it, I left heat high and speed slow and no cooling fan so what do i expect...but yeah i'll probably try esun at some point and rigid ink too though i think i'd like to see prints before shelling out 40 squid.

This one looks like Ex'Van Man [www.ebay.co.uk]

either purple or green i'd like to try, to go with the black.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/24/2017 06:52PM by MechaBits.
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