Hobbyists: Does the energy price affect your printing time?

Well, it does here now. We got a notification by our provider that they will triple the current price tag, although they supposedly only work with green energy and turns out that’s only true for about 50%. This means, that after the current ± 125 days of printing planned, after that I will halt all printing till the contract is renewed in June. I have one huge project left to print after June, as I created all the ideas that I liked for my hobbies so far. But the last big print job, which will take many months, will have to wait unfortunately.

Wait, your electricity rate is tripling?? That’s awful. For me, this is an optional, luxury, hobby. Maybe look into solar cells or some type of off-grid generation. Or, perhaps, send your project to a printing service if it is cost effective. Just some thoughts.

Good luck!

@Alan: Thanks!

Off grid is no option in Belgium. Solar will cost me here about 18k$ for what we need. Since we should live here 8 years more, we will have to see if that’s cost effective. All solar companies are currently not taking on new customers for the next year, as we asked plenty and nobody even replies and have their answering service on and don’t pick up the phone.

Off grid is not allowed by law. You have to upload your energy to the net and receive a small price tag, then buy it back to use for a hefty price tag, meaning over double than the upload.

3D printing companies here were tried before I decided to buy a printer myself. They print miniatures at the worst layer height available, losing all detail, have almost no color options available, and charge about 20$ for 1 model of about 4 inches wide and high, early 2021. That’s without shipping costs. I tried 4 different services and gave up.

Typical prints use only a few cents of electricity. Largest energy component is likely build plate heater. This can be minimized some with insulation.

There are plug-in power metering devices available for about $30. I have also seen a few YouTube videos on power usage. Understanding power requirements, helps in estimating solutions.

Since most printers have a 12V or 24V power supply. It is possible to use a car battery with a buck-boost power converter to run a printer.

@KitCarlson: great tip about the cork insulation. It saves 5-10% on my Prusa, that’s what I read. That’s worth a try.

We have a power meter device. We know where we spend electricity on. We already did all we could to minimize electricity spending, like all A+++ appliances, a well insulated home, LED lights, etc. But, we usually have 2 computers and a NAS on 16 hours a day and an insulated energy gobbling electric boiler for water, even though that’s on a timer. I require warmth to be able to stand the chronic pain I am in, so our central heating is set to a bit warmer than most people have. It’s what it is.

Since car batteries have to be recharged and the whole setup is not a very practical solution, I’m afraid that won’t help.