Reference Books

Hi. I have always enjoyed reading books that add to my knowledge and potentially to my skills. It is a bit old fashioned now, as every skill for every hobby can be found demonstrated on YouTube. For the under 30s, on-line resources seem exclusively employed. For older generations, old habits die hard. I consider myself a “Happy Hybrid”, relishing reading about 3D printing as much as watching excellent channels like DrVAX, among others.

The problem with both videos and books is that they can go out of date as guides, but still be useful as references. Here are my top five reference books for 3D printing. Some are in print, others may be available second hand. Cut and paste the ISBN numbers into Amazon to check.

  1. 3D Printing Failures (2020 edition) Aranda/Feeney, ISBN 9781710054590
    Excellent for forensically tracking down problems with prints. Now with a chapter of filament polymer science. Would benefit from a proper index!

  2. 3D Printing For Model Engineers (2018) Neil M. Wyatt, ISBN 9781785004254
    Very well written and fully colour illustrated. A definitive guide to getting to grips with a new way of making things.

  3. Laser Cutting and 3-D Printing for Railway Modellers (2016) Bob Gledhill, ISBN 9781785002267
    Not just about 3D printing, but full of tips on making small items. CAD section on “Sketchup Make” obsolete.

  4. Functional Design for 3D Printing (2014 edition) Clifford Smyth ISBN 9781497537460
    Useful monograph looking at how to design better parts. Demonstrated on model aircraft examples but applicable to anything.

5.3D Printing for Dummies (2014 edition) Hausman/Horne ISBN 9781118660751
Getting long in the tooth, but with a comprehensive index. Good quality b/w photos.

I hope people will add ther own personal favorites below. Please include the ISBN numbers and say what is especially good or lacking in the book.

PS I have not included cover photos, as we all know, “You shoudn’t judge a book by…”

I’m a hybrid guy as well. I prefer videos for things where it’s hard to describe a process in print. I prefer text where it’s relatively easy to make things clear, because I can read and refer back to areas of interest more quickly than by watching a video. IOW, I prefer whichever one is going to get me the info/understanding more quickly.

This is an excellent book, despite the lack of an index and grainy images (and a few typos). With proof of purchase, the author will e-mail high resolution images, a searchable PDF, and ePub file. It can be found here on Amazon.


Thanks for adding the list of books to this forum.