Single vs. Dual Extruders: What’s the Difference?

Single vs. Dual Extruders: What’s the Difference?

If you’re new to the 3D printing world, you might have encountered the single extruder and dual extruder while exploring the different types of 3D printers available. But what do these terms mean, and how are they different? Let’s discover the differences between a single and dual extruder to see what’s best in your situation.

Single Extruders

A single extruder 3D printer has only one head responsible for depositing the melted filament onto the build platform. The filament goes through the nozzle, which you can change to alter the nozzle size or material.

Single extruder printers are easy to use and maintain, making them an excellent choice for novices getting their feet wet. Single extruders are also affordable and can produce high-quality prints with accuracy. However, single extruder printers have limited color and material options. You can print in only one color or material at a time with a single extruder. This inconvenience causes many to look at what dual extruders have to offer.

Dual Extruders

On the other hand, a dual extruder 3D printer has two extruder heads that can print in two colors or materials simultaneously. This allows for more complex designs with many colors and materials.

You can print a model with a support material dissolvable in water, a flexible TPU material, and a rigid PLA material joined together. Dual extruder printers also have the advantage of printing rapidly, as they can print two parts simultaneously. However, dual extruders are more expensive and difficult to use and maintain, making them more useful for pros at the 3D printing game.

Advantages of Dual Extruders

If they’re in your budget and you know your way around the printer, a dual extruder may be best for you. Another advantage of dual extruder printers is the ability to print soluble supports. With a dual extruder printer, you can use a water-soluble PVA support material that’s easily dissolvable after printing.

This eliminates the need for manual support removal, which can be time-consuming and leave scratches on the model. With soluble supports, you can achieve more complex designs with overhangs, bridges, and intricate geometries that are impossible with traditional supports.

Dual extruder printers also have the advantage of printing with different nozzle sizes, allowing for more precise and detailed prints. You can use a smaller nozzle size for sophisticated details or a larger one for hastier prints. You can also use different temperature settings for different materials. This flexibility is impossible with single extruder printers, so an independent dual extruder 3D printer is in high demand.

Knowing the differences between single and dual extruders can help you determine which 3D printer is right for your needs. A single extruder printer is a good starting point if you’re a beginner or on a tight budget. However, if you require more color and material options or need to print complex designs with supports, a dual extruder printer is the way to go.

Regardless of your desires, 3D Printers Depot has the printer for you. You won’t find these printers anywhere else at a better price. And even if you do, we’ll match it!