I just started using a GigaBot XL (version 3) at work.
Print quality so far is similar to most other printers I've used (MakerBot Peplicator 2, 2X, FlashForge Dreamer). The machine is amazingly quieter than the smaller printers, which is something I didn't expect. I guess because of the shear mass of the printer, the sound is muffled a bit because it's too heavy for the motors to shake the main body.
Print quality is highly dependent on the profile settings. Re:3D did a good job with their latest Simplify3D profile. I would start with their profile and make needed modifications using it as a base. The Gigabot profile that ships with Simplify3D is not compatible with version 3. Absolutely do not use it, or you will get horribly bad print results. You can find the latest re:3D Simplify3D profiles on this page: http://wiki.re3d.org/index.php?title=In ... th_Gigabot
With version 3, you get auto filament detection. If filament runs out, then printing is paused. This is a MUST HAVE feature for a large printer. Also, the filament spools for this printer are huge. It can accommodate filament rolls over 15 pounds in size. This is plenty enough for most large prints.
For a build platform surface, I recommend the PrintInZ surface they sell. This has been working great for PLA so far. I have used BuildTak before. The PrintInZ surface works very well with the re:3D PLA filament.
The re:3D PLA is different from your typical PLA. It is somewhat more flexible, less brittle, and not as glossy as your typical PLA. I like it. I typically do not like PLA, because it shatters, and is too glossy. The re:3D PLA must have something added to it which makes it more flexible and less glossy.
I have only used the GigaBot XL v3 printer for a short while. I don't have any long term experience with it, so I can't make any judgement on reliability yet. So far, I've printed only a handful of prints. I have had no issues YET
. But all printers break down and have miscellaneous problems from time to time. This is to be expected. After I've used it to print a few dozens prints, I'll try to update this thread with my experience using it. My long term experience with MakerBot Replicator 2 and 2X, and FlashForge Dreamer printers will give me a good reference point to judge this printer by. Every printer I've used has broken down several times. The worst one being the MakerBot Replicator 2X. The MakerBot Replicator 2 and FlashForge Dreamer rarely break down and have relatively good print quality and print reliability, usually completing maybe 95% of prints without jamming problems. The MakerBot Replicator 2X would give me jam oriented print failures close to 50% after a while of use. It is horrible. It has broken down the most, and has the most jamming issues.
One quality observation I've been able to make so far is the dimensional accuracy of vertical walls is quite good. When printing a tower, the walls are nearly perfect. I don't see waves from layer to layer, which is a problem I see in my other printers to some degree. I think this is because of the mass of the printer. It's so heavy that it doesn't shake like the smaller printers. So vibrations evident in the print are less of a problem with this printer. I am happy so far with the print results.