How Much Filament Is Used In 3D Printing?

One of the most frequent questions asked by new 3D printing users is “How much filament do I need?” and for a new user it may be difficult to answer this question, so below we have answered some common questions and provided some information about how much filament you might need.


How much filament does a 3D printer use?

There are a few variables that will affect how much filament you use. If you are using larger layers and more infill, then you will use more filament than if you were to have course layers or less infill in your 3D print. If you have a printer that is printing at high speed, it will also use more filament than one printing at normal speeds. One thing that some people like to project is the cost of using 3D printer filament for their own projects.

One person might use 80-200 grams of filament on their 3D prints. Another person might print the same object and use 300-500 grams of filament. Some people will also consider the cost as well as the cost per gram, so they decide to use less filament for their 3D prints than others. Let’s say that you have a 1-meter spool of PLA filament. If you printed an object with 1 meter of filament, then your cost would be 40 cents per gram. Using half the filament would lower your cost per gram to 20 cents. The more you print, the cheaper it becomes.

It is important to note that some printers will use more or less filament for each 3D print. For example, if your printer has a larger nozzle, it will use less filament for each layer and also have less material inside of it than a smaller nozzle. There are also many types of filaments available on the market.

How much can you print with 1kg of filament?

If you wanted to know how much material you can print with 1kg of filament, you would want to know what kind of filament it is. The most common material, PLA, can produce approximately 3200 cubic centimeters or .22 cubic feet of material. This is about the same as two 12″ by 12″ by 12″ cubes of filament. This is a fair amount of material and would make a small statue (i.e. chess piece) or a few smaller trinkets when melted down.

How Can I Make A Spool Of Filament Last Longer?

A spool of filament is typically a big investment that you want to last as long and as many prints as possible. The following are some tips for making your filament last longer:

  • Make sure the extruder temperature is set at the appropriate temperature.
  • Fill your filament spool to the rim and use a needle to remove any air bubbles from inside of your spool.
  • Print objects that are smaller in size, less dense, or slower to print.
  • Always un-load and untwist the filament quickly after printing. There are tricks that you can do as well with a heated skein of filament which would make it last longer, but you will need special tools for those tricks.
  • Do not store your spool of filament above your printer or in direct sunlight. Don’t forget that storing filament for a long period of time can affect the quality of the material and over time simply become unusable.

There are a few tricks that can help, but since you will be unable to print a test print after loading the filament into your printer or after un-spooling the filament from your spool, there is no way to really tell how much longer it will last.

How To Make Sure I Do Not Run Out Of Filament While Printing

This is a question many 3D printer owners will ask. It’s not uncommon to be printing something and all of a sudden, the filament runs out. There are two ways to avoid this problem: plan your print and buy extra filament.

Planning your print

The first thing to do is to make sure you plan your print. That usually means estimating how much filament you need for a certain print. A simple way of doing this is by using a 3D model that has been designed specifically for this purpose. One such model is called Filament Calculator (3DFilaprint).


Some 3D printers use less filament than others, and some types of filaments will also have a variation in how much they are used. Whatever your printer and type of filament is, it’s important to know how much you need so that you can plan accordingly. Since there is no way to tell how much filament you will need once you have started printing, it is a good idea to plan ahead.

Learn more – What is layer height?