MakerBot Smart Extruder+


Print with Confidence and Ease

Double the warranty of its predecessor, the Smart Extruder+ is a culmination of product design and 160,000+ hours of rigorous testing that delivers dependable, consistent performance with superior results using MakerBot PLA filament.

Inside, improved components and an enhanced sensor system ensure that your printing process is simple and reliable from start to finish. Designed for ease of use, this extruder ensures greater print success over time.

The Smart Extruder+ is sold separately and can be yours for $99 when purchased with a MakerBot Replicator 5th Generation 3D Printer.

A system of sensors keeps you connected to the MakerBot Ecosystem, meaning you stay informed of your 3D print’s status wherever you are.

  • The positioning sensor assists with automatic build plate leveling for the MakerBot Replicator Mini and assisted build plate leveling for the MakerBot Replicator and MakerBot Replicator Z18. A level build platform is essential for the 3D printing process and the positioning sensor helps to take the fuss out of leveling.
  • The filament detection sensor ensures filament is present in the extruder at all times. If filament runs out, your print is paused and a notification is sent to MakerBot Desktop and MakerBot Mobile to prompt you to load more filament before resuming the print.

Constant communication between these sensors and the MakerBot Ecosystem minimizes your downtime and keeps the guesswork out of your printing workflow.

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The Smart Extruder+ is MakerBot’s most tested product ever. The following ensure you get the reliability and results that you would expect from an industry leader in 3D printing:

  • Tested for 160,000 cumulative hours or a total of 18 years.
  • Tested by two groups in separate locations across MakerBot and Stratasys. These tests were done with a different build and production lot.
  • A total of 5,800 total prints were completed. Our standard test print lasts over 24 hours.
  • Backed by a 6-month warranty when using PLA filament, which is double that of the Smart Extruder.

The MakerBot Smart Extruder+ is engineered and extensively tested for better performance. Improved components within the Smart Extruder+ reduce clogging to extend the life of your extruder. The enhanced sensor system improves detection while improved alignment between your extruder and carriage ensure proper connection. These enhancements make the Smart Extruder+ easier to use and ensure greater print success over longer periods of time.

Most desktop 3D printers include a non-swappable extruder without sensors or connectivity to the 3D printer’s corresponding software. This requires the user to be more actively involved in monitoring their 3D printer. The design of the Smart Extruder+ makes 3D printing more accessible with an easy-to-use design that doesn’t require a toolbox.

There are two versions of the MakerBot Smart Extruder+: one that’s compatible with the MakerBot Replicator Z18 3D Printer and another that’s compatible with both the MakerBot Replicator Mini Compact 3D Printer and the MakerBot Replicator Desktop 3D Printer. To ensure optimal functionality, select the extruder that is compatible with your MakerBot Replicator 3D Printer.

In order to take advantage of all that the Smart Extruder+ has to offer, you must upgrade MakerBot Desktop to version 3.9 and your MakerBot Firmware to version 1.9.

The Smart Extruder+ is optimized for use with MakerBot PLA Filament only. Using materials other than MakerBot PLA Filament will void your limited warranty.

For instructions on installing your Smart Extruder+, loading and unloading filament, or tips on taking care of your Smart Extruder+ (like how to unclog your Smart Extruder+) and more, visit our helpful Support webpage at and select your MakerBot 3D printer for printer specific tips.

The rate of wear on the Smart Extruder+ is dependent on how you use it and the settings it’s configured for over time. In our extensive testing, the Smart Extruder+ lasts for over 700 hours of printing with MakerBot PLA filament. This timeframe is the equivalent of the following:

  • 2,310 meters of filament
  • 7 large spools of MakerBot PLA filament
  • 1.44 miles of filament

If continuous production and minimal downtime is a priority, we recommend you keep at least one spare Smart Extruder+ on hand so that you can easily swap it into place when you need it. See our video for tips on correctly using and extending the lifespan of your Smart Extruder+.