20+ Photos of Epic 3D Printing Fails

3D printing is gaining momentum thanks to the wide availability of 3D printers for any pocket. Still, newbies and even experienced hobbyists sometimes run into epic 3D printer fails.

Gambody has compiled a list of failed 3D print results that can motivate you to never give up. Learn why your 3D prints keep failing and fix the problem to create fantastic, highly detailed, and smooth 3D prints.

3D printer fails

3D Printer Fails

If, until recently, 3D printing was an activity that few could afford, it is now being used by people with various professional backgrounds. This is mostly due to the increased coverage it receives from online mass media outlets and big companies that specialize in 3D printing.

Additive manufacturing is still relatively new so people are curious to learn how to handle it and what can one do once it gets to the grips. But before that, you might mess up and experience unpleasant 3D printer fails.

However, don’t despair. You are not alone in your ‘misery’. Many have messed up before you as well, and their failed 3D prints can help you learn the lesson virtually and avoid the practical mistakes made by you.

Read also: Best Online 3D Printing Service for Hobbyists 2022

Why do my 3D prints keep failing?

3D print failures happen all the time. There are different factors to consider when someone asks, “Why do my 3D prints keep failing?”

Here are the most common reasons for failed 3D prints:

  • Your 3D printer settings;
  • Incorrect bed leveling;
  • Wrong build material for the 3D model;
  • Ignoring the 3D printer specs, and much more.

Every beginner and advanced user who doesn’t want to end up with a failed 3D print should keep in mind several things before turning on their 3D printer.

We’ve rummaged through the Internet and found over 20 photos of the funniest and awkward 3D printer fails that you can see below. Take a moment to scroll down and see all of them.

Filament 3D Print Fails

FDM 3D printer fans know the role of filament, which should be of high quality and installed correctly to prevent 3D printing fails.

There can be numerous reasons for catastrophic 3D printer fails because of poor quality filament or incorrect hanging of the spool. See photos below of the destruction caused to 3D prints by the filament issues.

3D Print Fails Halfway

Sometimes your 3D printer fails when you are half done with your 3D printing project. Why can it happen?

The project can require more than one spool of filament. Thus you might have to do the mid-print filament swap and screw up. It is how your 3D print fails halfway, and you share photos of your disaster with your friends.

Star Wars 3D print fail
Image: Pinterest

When you know that you will have to switch filament in the middle of your print, it is best to adjust the settings of your slicer and point to the layer when such a switch is necessary. Using Cura settings or other slicer options, it is simple to follow your printing process and see what layer is being made right now.

Having full control over your 3D printer settings will minimize errors. But it could still be possible that your 3D print fails halfway because of filament run-out or other printer issues.

3D Print Fail During Filament Switch

When you are working on a big or multicolor 3D print you might need to switch filament right in the middle of your project. And if you are not patient enough or make a mistake while manually changing your spool, your 3D print fails halfway and ruins all the fun.

Learn how you can 3D print with two colors using a one-extrusion printer. And see images of 3D printer fails shared by people who either tried to switch colors and failed or who ran out of filament amid their print and unsuccessfully tried to install a new spool.

On your end, you should be very attentive when switching filament. If you are playing with colors to create pretty layers, be sure to switch at the right time. You can use your clock alarm and pause your 3D printer at the same time for each layer. Then switch the 3D printing material and keep printing until you create the desired effect.

Failed 3D Prints: Other Reasons

The filament is not the only thing that can cause problems and lead to failed 3D prints. There can be other issues to consider when you wish to never see how your 3D printer fails and upsets you.

3D printer fail
Image: Cunicode


If you search YouTube for 3D printer fails, you will see many videos with 3D printer accidents and even explosions. And though 3D printers don’t easily explode, you still should learn more about 3D printers on fire and the way to protect them.

3D printing failures
Screenshot from a YouTube video by rwg42985

One YouTube user by the nickname of rwg42985 showed a video with an exploded spool that caused 3D printing failures. Such things don’t happen every day, but you should be aware of situations when re-spooling your filament can cause real danger to your project and printer.

It is a must to learn how to store filament because when 3D printing material is stored in a room with incorrect humidity, it can easily cause 3D print fails. Ensure your filament is always dry before you begin working on a new project.

Failed Connectors

A failed 3D print can be the result of connectors failing to work correctly. Usually, when you are using an FDM 3D printer with filament, there is a push-fit connector that keeps feeding the plastic 3D printing material into the special PTFE tube.

The printing failures don’t occur when the extruder motor feeds the 3D printing material correctly. But if something goes wrong and connectors stop working, the motor is not doing its job correctly and the filament is not getting into the hot end smoothly.

3D print fails
Image credit: Imgur

If you wonder, “Why do my 3D prints keep failing?” and connector cause this issue, you should get a more expensive and high-quality connector that will keep doing its job correctly and won’t lead to a failed 3D print ever again.

Heat Block Issues

Another thing that can happen to a 3D printer running unattended is your hot heater getting loose. If it happens while your device is building your new model, you can expect a 3D printing failure.

Only look at the photo shared by Reddit user OpusMcn who was hoping to do some prints overnight. Something went wrong with the 3D printer, and the hot end heater got loose leading to a heating element falling onto the 3D print.

Failed 3D prints
Image credit: Reddit user OpusMcn

It is great if you use thermal protection to prevent any runaway issues on top of securing the heating block well. Your 3D printer should stop powering your hot end heater if it falls. Otherwise, there are possibilities of fire that could burn your room or house completely.

Z-axis, X-axis Fail

Until your 3D printer fails, you will enjoy watching the Z-axis and X-axis working hard to help you turn a 3D printing model into a physical figurine. However, people like Chris Cecil who once faced an unpleasant failed 3D print know that things don’t always go as planned.

3D printer failure
Image credit: Chris Cecil

His machine chose to jump from the table and whatever it was trying to build became a failed 3D print. Thus, it could be a great idea for you to either secure your 3D printing machine to avoid similar problems or use it on the wide and long table.

Failed Calibration

Sometimes, you can have problems with your 3D printer that repeat every once in a while. Chris Templeman who was making thousands of roosters for a holiday in 2017 experienced many 3D printing failures.

To make the art exhibit called “Make and Take” real, the artist went through the most epic 3D printer fails until he succeeded. And now you can learn how to save your plastic and not waste big amounts of it.

3D print fails halfway
Image credit: Chris Templeman

Just stay near your machine and don’t leave it unattended for hours and nights. It is your best way to prevent anything like this 3D printing rooster disaster.

Read also: Best 3D Printing Websites with Free 3D Print Models 2022

3D Resin Print Fails Halfway

Not only FDM printers lead to a failed 3D print. Users who prefer to build 3D printing models in the resin can also get some unpleasant moments that must be fixed.

If you ever see your failed print stuck to your FEP sheet, there is a video that can help you to get it off your resin 3D printer. Thanks to YouTube user Dylan Kowalski, you can now fix the problem if a 3D resin print fails halfway or at the very beginning of your project.

Bed Adhesion Fail

When Reddit user Cheetawolf tries printing PETG on the Creality Ender 3 machine and chooses a 240C temperature setting for PETG plus 70C temperature for PEI sheet, his 3D printer fails to provide a good result. It happens so often that out of 10 attempts about 7 are 3D printing failures.

3D printing fails
Image credit: Cheetawolf

Is it poor bed adhesion? It is hard to say because some users cannot print PETG well and also end up with various issues.

So, if you wish to work with PETG, search for good advice from users who own the very same printer brand and already tested the material and learned to achieve good results.

3D printing fail
Image credit: Chris Cecil

More 3D Printing Failures

There are many other 3D printer fails worth looking at. Gambody has gathered many photos of catastrophes some 3D printing enthusiasts experienced.

Failed print
Image: fakerbots.com
3d print epic fails
Image: fakerbots.com
3d print failures
Image credit: Flickr
Why do my 3D prints keep failing
Image: Fred Kahl
3D printer spaghetti mess
Picture: Flickr
Yoda failed 3D print
Image: fakerbots.com
Epic 3D print fails
Photo: Pinterest
3d model printing fail
Image: Pinterest
3d printer fails
Photo: Pinterest
What do to when 3D print fails
Picture: Chris Cecil
Flying spaghetti monster 3D print
Photo: Tumblr
Failed 3D printer models
Picture: Tumblr
3D printer failed prints
Photo: Tumblr
3D printer failed
Image: Watz
Why do my 3D resin prints keep failing

If you have 3D printer fails of your own, do share them in the comments below. We’re all eagerly waiting to see some epic stuff. And although your machine cannot apologize for failing you, there is Gambody 3D Printing Community on Facebook that can always support you and share some stunning tips and advice.

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