Are 3D Pens Toxic? Things You Must Know

Are 3D printers too expensive for your needs? A three-dimensional pen will do the trick. And you may wonder that are 3D pens toxic? And that is what we will put on the table shortly.

If you are interested in three-dimensional printing but an actual 3D printer is just too much for what you want, you should consider getting a 3D pen. Yes, they can not make objects with an amazing shape like a printer can do. But since the pen is offered in a way cheaper price tag in a worthy price.

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Or are you looking for an innovative hobby for your kids and wondering “are 3D pens safe for children?” As a result, some studies and research have been done, which will be shared below independently. So, shall we?


What Is A 3D Pen – A Detail Explanation

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Before we answer the question “are 3D pens toxic or not, the first thing to know is how it works. 

1. The History

They are developed and invested in 2013 and soon became a super popular item among artists and hobbyists. In the beginning, while most people do not think that they will not be useful. Meanwhile, people are making stunning arts or decoration pieces such as vases, frames, and many more.

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Unlike printers, you will not need digital models to print an object

2. How A Hot 3D Pen Work?

Basically, a three-dimensional pen is a pen that extrudes warm or heated materials (usually plastic materials) from the pen’s head. Hence, the most obvious thing that separates 3D printing pens from printers is they do not need software to print an object. Yet, many people wonder that are 3D pens toxic when they heat the plastic? The answer will depend on which side that you choose, which will be talking below.

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For more information, let’s have a peek at the inside. Commonly, there are motors (usually 2 motors) inside the device, and between the motors is a material stick. The desired materials can be heated using a direct power cord connected to the power source or a battery. After that, on the outside, near the nozzle is a button, which will trigger the motors to push the material out. Furthermore, the material will cool down and turns into a solid form quickly, the cooling time will depend on your environment.

3. How Does A Cold 3D Printing Pen work?

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A cold 3D pen works just like the hot ones but with some differences. First, they will not heat the materials but they will use an ink-like material, which is in a liquid form. Second, In the “printing process’’, the ink will make contact with lights, it will turn into a solid form.

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Furthermore, commonly, manufacturers will feature a UV light at the printing head of the device. This UV light will turn the liquid material into a solid form as soon as it is extruded out of the pen. The only downside of cold printing is the price of the materials, which can be a bit higher compared to the hot materials.

4. Are 3D Pens Expensive?

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No, base on the value they offer, they are not expensive. The average price of a basic device is just somewhere around $40 or even cheaper depending on where you live. Why am I saying that? Because the price can vary on shipping fees, taxes, and the policies of the government about three-dimensional printing activities.

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Furthermore, some governments somehow will consider three-dimensional printing pens are somehow the same as an actual printer. As criminals can use printers to make illegal products such as fake items or even weaponry products. This will encourage the government to put some limitations on them for safety purposes, the US for example.

5. Are 3D Pens Worth It?

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For the great value, they are offering? Yes, they are worth it. For instant, your children can actually make almost anything with it, which will improve their creativity and innovation. Furthermore, you can also use them for educational purposes if you are a teacher and looking for some helpful tools. Since they do not need complex software and skills, they are super easy to use. However, some people might have a wrong thought that leads to a question “are 3D pens toxic for your health?’’, no, they are not.

Are 3D Pens Toxic – Thing You Must Know

Are 3d Printing Pens Worth It

Since we have learned the value they offer, it is time to find out what you must know before getting one. Things like “are they toxic for children or not”, and “will they affect the environment in a bad way”. Hence, you will want to know these before you want to put them into your children’s hands. So, are 3D pens toxic for their users? Shall we take a quick look at these?

1. Are 3D Pens Toxic?

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Just like every good parent, you will want to know if they are toxic or not for your kids. And the answer is no, they are not toxic. However, the same thing can not be said if you are talking about the fumes the pens produce while printing. While most people do not like the plastic smell of ABS materials, they will prefer PLA instead. PLA is a popular material that can produce a sweet smell while printing because there are corns in the compounds. According to that, many manufacturers recommend that you should use their products in an open area.

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On the other hand, using ABS with no protection will get you into some dangerous illness. A study in 2015 shows that if ABS is contacted with skin or absorbed via nose or mouth, it will stick in your lungs. This means the tiny plastic particulate will travel to your brain throughout the bloodline.

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Besides, if you have sensitive skin, avoiding using ABS materials might be a good idea. For example, if your skin is exposed to ABS plastic for enough period of time, your skin might get burn. This means you will have to wear protection accessories such as masks, gloves, and goggles for a safer printing experience.

2. Are 3d Pens Bad For The Environment?

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Are 3D printing pens toxic for the environment? Just like a three-dimensional printer, there are 2 ways to talk about this. First of all, the advantages that they will offer. The first one is they will help in lower the waste of raw materials. Why? Because a three-dimensional pen will only use raw materials to make objects. This means they will lower the waste of raw materials and the pollution while making them as well. The second one is they can be easier to be recycled since they only use raw materials.

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On the other hand, there are some disadvantages as well. Firstly, they are plastics, and plastics are not as good as it was for the planet. But there is still hope for the future because there are companies that are making a new form of plastic that can dissolve in nature. One more is the fumes they produce, imagine 2 out of 10 people having a printing pen, the fumes they produce can be quite irritating.

3. Are 3D Pens Hot While Using?

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No, they are not. As mentioned, the materials can only be heated inside the pen and will cool down when being extruded. One more, many manufacturers put an anti-heat cover on the outside of the device where you hold them. This will assure that the hot material inside will not burn your hand.

How To Use A Three-Dimensional Pen Correctly

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Just like every other device, knowing how to use them correctly is a must. This is all because printing pens are very fragile and can break out easily. Furthermore, things like choosing the wrong material, long high-temperature exposure, or unproperly cleaning will easily destroy your device.

1. Choose The Right Material

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Many manufacturers making pens that only work with PLA or ABS, or even both. This means if you use ABS for a PLA pen, the pen might be broken easily. Yes, there are devices that can work finely with both ABS and PLA, but they are quite expensive. So, when you are getting new material for your device, consider getting a suitable one. If you are a beginner, you should consider buying a PLA pen. All because they are super cheap, easy to use and they will not produce a plastic smell while working with.

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Furthermore, each material will have its particular property, advantages, and disadvantages. For example, ABS will offer sturdiness yet still have enough flexibility for your printed object. Yet, the downside of ABS is the plastic smell and the potential toxic for your health. On the other hand, PLA, like being said, is cheaper and safer for your health. But it will not have the same level of sturdiness as ABS plastic, but since it is safer, it is still a good choice.

2. Read The Guideline

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Each model will have a specific button and feature, so reading the guideline will help you a lot. This will also help you to know what to do and what to not, things like the right temperature and the print speed. In most models, you will find the power input hole, temperature controller, wire feeding button, and wire unplugging button.

How To Start a 3d Pen
This is a common one, the buttons can be changed depending on the models you might get

For using, usually, you will have to connect the pen to a power source, wait for it to heat up, and insert the material. Once the temperature is raised to the wanted level, you can start printing.

3. Handle With Care

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Since three-dimensional pens are super fragile so handling them carefully is a must. Hence, make sure that you take the material out when you stop printing and remember to clean the tip after that. So, are 3D printing pens toxic or not? This one will depend on how you taking care of them. If you use them with a reckless thought, they might turn into a toxic potential for your health.

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Furthermore, if you let them hang out at a high temperature for too long, it may damage the device. This means you’ll have to store them properly in a box or something similar to prevent them from breaking out. Plus, if the print head is not properly clean after use, the remaining material will cool down and stick in the head. This means when the next time you use it, the material can not be stably extruded, which will lead to overheating. In the worst scenario? It might be exploded.

The Related Questions

What Pens Are Non Toxic

1. Are 3D Pens Hard To Use?

No, they are not hard to use. Because all they do is print out the material into a solid form. This means that you will not have to learn all the fancy skills to master it.

Fox Animal In 3d

A piece of art printed by a pen

2. Are 3D Pens Dangerous?

Since they are so easy to use, there can be some dangerous things. The first one is the smell they produce if you choose BAS to work with. Being mentioned, ABS can produce a plastic smell, which can be quite annoying and may cause hazardous illness. This means you will have to find an open area to work with for more safety.

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3. What Pens Are Non-Toxic?

A non-toxic pen? A PLA printing pen will do the trick. Why? Because PLA will not produce a plastic smell while using, you can even find a sweet smell since they are con-based.

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4 . Who Would Use A 3D Printing Pen?

They can be widely used by teachers, artists, and hobbyists, or many more because the possibilities are endless. Furthermore, for example, teachers can use them to make symbols to make the student a more specific clearance. While artists can use them to make art pieces, hobbyists can make anything they want.

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For instant, many people are making money with them. Most of their task is making and providing educational accessories such as samples or symbols, providing their products for schools or other educational purposes.

Final Words

Remember when the teacher said that the only limitation is your imagination? For instant, with three-dimensional printing technology, it is like a dream come true for most of us. Hence, I do hope that throughout this writing, you will have some interest in three-dimensional pens. So, are 3D pens toxic or not? If you are talking about PLA printing, then the answer will be no, they are not toxic.

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