Printl 3D-printed figures

Jakko

SMF Poster
Joined
Apr 28, 2018
Messages
556
Likes
265
Points
63
First Name
Jakko
#1
You do not have permission to view link Log in or register now.
is a webshop on Shapeways, one of the commercial 3D-printing companies where anyone can upload a 3D model and offer it for sale through their site. Printl makes 3D scans of real people and offers them in variety of scales; I was recently looking for children in 1/35th scale suitable for posing with a model of a 1970s military vehicle, upon which @Gary MacKenzie referred me to Printle’s web shop.

Browsing their selection, I found some that looked suitable for what I had in mind, but most weren’t available in 1/35. Luckily, the site says that:—
Printle said:
If you d0 not find what you need, open a conversation with Printle Shop and we shall give you an answer within 48 hours !
So I did just that through the message system on the Shapeways site, and within an hour, got a reply that the figures I wanted were now available in 1/35. Good customer service, certainly.

I duly placed an order for
(By the way, “wob” stands for “without base”.) The difference in material is because Kid 024 was already available in 1/35, and in that material, while the others were only offered in other types.

I received the order pretty quickly: I placed it on 11 July, got a notification that it was about to be shipped on the 15th, and received the package today (the 17th). Unpacking the figures, though, I felt somewhat disappointed for the reason shown in this photo:

All figures.jpg

At a glance, you can tell that they’re quite clearly not all to the same scale … So let’s look at them in detail.

Kid 024
This is a boy who I’d estimate to be maybe eight years old or so. The figure is:—
Kid 024.jpg
36 mm tall, which in 1/35th scale equals 126 cm. According to
You do not have permission to view link Log in or register now.
the average height for a British boy, age eight, is 132.8 cm, so he may be a bit short but is acceptable, though his head seems a little on the small side. (Note: I’m not sure where the people who were scanned for these models are from, but going by the site I’m guessing France, and I doubt French children are much taller or shorter than British ones, so I’ll use the British data for comparisons.)

Kid 063
This is a girl who I’d estimate to be younger than Kid 024, yet the figure is a bit bigger at:—
Kid 063.jpg
42 mm tall, equal to 147 cm. If we assume she’s seven, then average height for a girl is 125.2 cm, meaning she scales out to the height of a ten- to eleven-year-old, but her head is far too big for that age. (Children have proportionally bigger heads than adults, since the brain doesn’t grow nearly as much as the rest of the body. A child with a head that’s relatively big compared to the body is therefore younger than one whose head is relatively smaller.)

Kid 078
This is a young boy, who I’d estimate to not be older than about five, but he is:—
Kid 078.jpg
just over 40 mm tall. If we take the fraction off to account for his hair, that still scales him to 140 cm tall, when five-year-old boys average 113.1 cm. That’s the height of a nine-year-old, which he most definitely is not.

Kid 201
This is a teenage girl; I’d estimate her to be maybe fourteen or fifteen years old, and she’s:—
Kid 201.jpg
47 mm tall, or 165 cm. That’s neatly in the height bracket for those ages (164.7–167.1 cm), so this figure scales out well.

Kid 215
Finally, a youngish teenage boy, maybe thirteen or fourteen I’d guess. His height is:—
Kid 215.jpg
34 mm, or 119 cm. That’s a good height for a six-year-old, but this kid is definitely well past that age. He should be about the same height as the teenage girl, but reaches barely past her waist :smiling3:

To put all this another way, here are the approximate scales the figures work out at (assuming I estimated their ages correctly):

Kid 024: 1/37
Kid 063: 1/30
Kid 078: 1/28
Kid 211: 1/35
Kid 215: 1/48

All in all, only two of my five figures are usable for what I have in mind :sad:

In retrospect, of course, I should have known this, since Shapeways supplies the size of the models on the product page:

Shapeways size indicator.png

However, I trusted the seller to correctly size the figures to the claimed scale so I didn’t really look at this, let alone compare it to actual children’s heights.

Quality
After all that, I haven’t mentioned the quality of the figures at all. I haven’t examined them extensively yet, let alone painted them (I got the parcel about two hours before posting this), but detail seems okay but not outstanding. On the other hand, it’s not like these are military figures wearing lots of kit — they’re civilian figures wearing simple clothes, so the only areas that really need detail are the faces and hands. Those appear a bit soft, as far as I can tell from the white and translucent plastic, but they will probably paint up well enough.

Price
For what you get, the price is somewhat steep. These figures cost around what I would expect to pay for a resin figure, which would tend to have better-defined detail. This is probably largely due to the limitations of the 3D-scanning and -printing processes, and the price of the latter (in short: Shapeways charges the shop owner a price based on the material and the model’s physical volume, after which the shop owner puts a profit margin on top of that to arrive at the price advertised on the site).

However, it’s not like you have all that much choice if you need children in modern clothes. Therefore, my main complaint is the size discrepancy, aside from which I would recommend these figures. Check the sizes against real-world ones carefully before ordering, is my main advice.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Apr 30, 2018
Messages
455
Likes
165
Points
43
First Name
Jon
#2
They do look good figures.So does each one have to be individually sized before printing?
Teething trouble do you think?
Jon.
 

Jakko

SMF Poster
Joined
Apr 28, 2018
Messages
556
Likes
265
Points
63
First Name
Jakko
#3
The way it works is that they make a 3D computer model, and that can be sized to basically anything desired. It gets printed out at the size the maker specifies. Since these are (or at least appear to be) 3D scans of real people, all that’s needed to get the model’s height right is to measure the person’s body length right before or after scanning them, and then sizing the 3D model accordingly.
 

Jakko

SMF Poster
Joined
Apr 28, 2018
Messages
556
Likes
265
Points
63
First Name
Jakko
#4
Update: I pointed the seller to the above review/critique, and he offered to refund my money for the out-of-scale figures and make them available at the size I’m looking for. Once more very good customer service, so I’ve sent him the heights I feel are right for the figures and said I’ll re-order them if he makes them available in those sizes.
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
461
Likes
258
Points
63
First Name
Paul
#5
Jakko,
Sounds like a good company, who take constructive criticism to grow their business.
 

Jakko

SMF Poster
Joined
Apr 28, 2018
Messages
556
Likes
265
Points
63
First Name
Jakko
#7
I got the replacement figures today, so I took some photos to compare the old and (more) correct ones. In all the following, the figure reviewed above is on the left, the resized one is on the right:

IMG_4490.jpg

IMG_4492.jpg

IMG_4494.jpg

Here’s a family portrait with Dad (who was from Japan but joined the German army in the war, and got invalided out for obvious reasons) to give an idea of their relative sizes:

IMG_4496.jpg

These figures are much more in scale than the previous versions, so once again my thanks to Luc from Printl for his quick responses and excellent customer service!
 

ropey

SMF Poster
Joined
Apr 29, 2018
Messages
5
Likes
4
Points
3
First Name
Perry
#9
Better, but one seems still to be incorrectly sized (IMO). The leftmost should be shorter if head size is anything to go by.
 

Mickc1440

SMF Poster
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
273
Likes
156
Points
43
First Name
Mick
#10
Fair play on the customer service and most of them do look much better, still not sure the smallest lad looks quite right though?
 

Jakko

SMF Poster
Joined
Apr 28, 2018
Messages
556
Likes
265
Points
63
First Name
Jakko
#11
Yes, I was thinking that too, though his head seems a bit bigger than it is because he’s looking down a bit and has a fair amount of hair. This time round it’s my fault, though, for not estimating his age correctly and thus not supplying Printl with the right size. I’m not sure I’ll use him for what I have in mind.
 

John Race

Plastic burner and member of the Rabble
Joined
May 26, 2015
Messages
1,053
Likes
622
Points
113
Location
lincs
First Name
John
#12
Jakko .
I very interesting post, reading your your critic I think you were very fair in your observations. I'm sure the response from the vendor was due to your approach and the manor in which you wrote. After all he wants to sell and a happy customer will return.
John .
 

Jakko

SMF Poster
Joined
Apr 28, 2018
Messages
556
Likes
265
Points
63
First Name
Jakko
#13
True, but I still hadn’t expected him to refund money for figures I ordered when I could have seen they were the wrong size before I ever placed my order. Maybe it’s just that I’m used to Dutch merchants and store staff, though, who seem to not know the meaning of the phrase “customer satisfaction” at all.
 

John Race

Plastic burner and member of the Rabble
Joined
May 26, 2015
Messages
1,053
Likes
622
Points
113
Location
lincs
First Name
John
#14
Ah
Well that attitude is found in some shops in the uk. I think it starts at the top, if the manager /owner is customer orientated then it passes down. It of course works both ways, rush in shouting and you get no where, I always think you should speak as you would like to be spoken to.
Your vendor wants to get things right, he's working on the premise that the customer is always right !
John .
 
Top