how big of a printer do i need?

im looking to get into printing/milling/laser engraving. im looking to build a mpcnc with a work area about 21x31x3-4 inches. i would like to be able to print, laser burn into wood, and maybe mill a little wood and aluminum. unrealistic goals? not sure if i need four inches height, but it would be nice. how drastic would the difference be between 3 and 4 inches Z be concerning accuracy? also, i do not have printing capabilities, and will hopefully have a friend do it (i would like to buy them from vivious1, but im 16, taking flight lessons, and my budget is extremely limited). anyway, im not sure that my friend’s printer can handle it, and was wondering what the largest pieces are, X,Y, and Z? thanks, and i hope to start my build soon!

The big XY piece is around 140 X 80 X 100mm. The big Z pieces are around 160mm at the widest. Maybe a tad shorter, I’m using slicer to measure, so eyeballing with the grid.

That’s on the big side. I think your spreading yourself pretty thin trying to reach all these goals with one configuration. That size is a good size for making through cuts in wood and laser engraving, but not great with 3D printing or aluminum milling.

Just be patient, and remember that you can change the size later without reprinting anything.

@Barry, doesn’t slic3r have a little stat box in the lower right with the sizes?

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Well som’bitch!


132.25 X 77.55 X 97.58! I was close!

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I didn’t know that, I have always avoided this question, now I feel like a punk for not answering. The harder question is what is the smallest machine that can print the parts, Z is easy but angling the XYZ part is the one I should really just sit down and figure out and drop it in the FAQ’s, cuz it is an FAQ.

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@Ryan, i would appreciate that in the FAQ (im sure a lot of guy’s would), because i couldn’t find it anywhere, including all the tags i could come up with searching the forum.


is that X, Y, then Z (height)?


Also, I plan on using mid section supports, how much will that impact accuracy?

Yep, X Y Z. You can rotate it around the Z axis to fit on the bed, but I wouldn’t try laying it down to print. Unless you have a printer that can print water soluble support material.

Is that of the biggest piece, or largest dimensions I will need on all axis’s? Since I would like to be able to print my own pieces for another mpcnc, what is the tallest Z piece I will need? I want to build (if reasonablly possible) my z dimension just big enough to be able to print a new mpcnc.

That’s the tallest piece. One of the Z bearing plates is a little wider, but it’s short and skinny. Middle Z top bottom, 151.86 x 82.97 x 19mm.


I’d say as long as you can print in a 200 x 200 x 100mm cube, you should be alright. You could also use the mpcnc to print parts.

Okay I am adding this to the FAQ’s,

Z- (toolmount) 120mm min.

X&Y - (XYZ turned) 135mmx135mm, min.

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