Welcome! Log In Create A New Profile


First introduction kit vs DIY

Posted by phoenixdigital 
First introduction kit vs DIY
August 05, 2013 07:44PM
Based on what I have been reading regarding complexities of getting 3D printers fine tuned etc. I am thinking that my first printer should be a kit rather than build one from scratch.

I am currently looking at (no particular order)
Solidoodle - [store.solidoodle.com]
MBot Cube - [www.mbot3d.com]
Evolution - [www.3dstuffmaker.com]

What are peoples thoughts on these pros/cons?

While I would like to build one from scratch it seems like its close to the cost of getting a premade kit ie $600 (DIY) vs $1000 (Kit). Plus the premade kits shouldn't need as much tweaking and fine tuning to get a decent print early on.

After I get my first one up and running though I will look at building one from scratch as newer designs come out. By then I will no doubt have more knowledge about what is required.

Re: First introduction kit vs DIY
August 05, 2013 08:19PM
One thing to note:

Anything $1000 AUD or greater will attract import duties (usually just GST, but you still have to go through the hassle of dealing with customs). If it's close after conversion to AUD, remember that customs will most likely use the current rate if the item is marked in USD, or they might use an AUD invoiced amount (which may include charges for currency conversion from the supplier, etc).

Talk to the suppliers and see if they will split the kit into two shipments, with a separate invoice for each.

This will drop the cost to well below $1000 per shipment, which should avoid the need to deal with customs.
Re: First introduction kit vs DIY
August 05, 2013 09:04PM
Good point about GST. I dont mind paying an extra $100 if its for something decent though.

Another potential kit I found is this one (Which comes in under $1000)

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/05/2013 09:25PM by phoenixdigital.
Re: First introduction kit vs DIY
August 05, 2013 11:59PM

I have a Prusa i3 single frame version for sale, complete with a spool of PLA. Check out the For Sale section.

The i3 is a good solid printer that will print good quailty parts.

Re: First introduction kit vs DIY
August 26, 2013 06:12AM

Mbot3d is better option for you since it can print in dual color, but 3dstuffmaker evolution can print only single color.

For Solidoodle ABS is highly recommended. 3dstuffmaker evolution can print only with PLA. But with mbot you can use printing filaments like ABS, PLA and PVA.
Re: First introduction kit vs DIY
August 26, 2013 06:08PM
Hi All,

Thanks for the input. After a lot of researching on the net I ended up settling on nophead's Mendel90 kit.

WOW these things take a long time to build! In all I think it took me about 4 nights of 6 hours per night each. I decided to wait until the following evening to read up on calibration and make sure I was doing it all right.

First print was pretty good with a few stringy bits. I think I need to calibrate the extruder a bit better than what I did. Waiting on a dial gauge as well to make sure the print bed is perfectly flat.

First print then a calibration cube.

Anyone got any ideas what the stringy bits on the cube are generally caused by?
Re: First introduction kit vs DIY
August 29, 2013 08:16PM
Some of the horizontal lines on the box look like your Z isn't always stepping correctly. It's pretty close though, just seems to happen occasionally.

I'd turn the Z stepper trimpot up 1/8th of a turn and try it again to see if the issue is resolved.

If after turning it up 3 times (so 3/8th of a turn from where you were) this isn't resolved, I'd look for mechanical issues such as binding on your threaded rods.

For that, I'd make sure that there's no burrs on the threaded rods (or even ont he smooth rods). I usually clean up the thread of the threaded rod with some 800-1200 grit sandpaper - just wrap it around the threaded rod, pinch it with your fingers and turn - it will naturally screw through the sandpaper. I only do this once just to remove any artefacts from the manufacturing process.

I would also recommend cleaning the threads (eg: using a toothbrush to remove any particles in the threads), then use something like lithium grease on the rods to keep them from sticking. Avoid standard oil or WD40, as this can apparently weaken ABS plastic if it gets on it. I tend to put a blob of lithium grease on the threads right next to the Z axis nut, and then drive the Z axis in that direction for as far as it goes. I then put it on the other side and do the same thing in reverse. This spreads the lithium grease along the threads reasonably well. After doing this a few times remove any excess blobs of grease from around the nuts.

Note: Always lubricate your threaded rods AFTER cleaning them, otherwise the grease holds all the junk on the rod, which could make matters worse.
Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.

Click here to login