FLSUN 3D Printer Prusa i3 DIY Kit Review
For those people who are keen to start 3D printing as a hobby but don’t want to outlay a lot of money to purchase a fully assembled 3D printer, purchasing a kit may be a good option.
The FLSUN Prusa i3 Printer kit is a complete and high quality kit with easy assembly instructions and some very good features. You’ll receive everything to build a fully functioning 3D printer which is compatible with a variety of available filaments.
Obviously you’ll need to enjoy building things and have some spare time to complete the build. Ideally you’ll also have a little mechanical inclination and some patience.
In saying that, this kit is not difficult to put together if you carefully follow the assembly videos and written instructions.
|Print material||Auto Calibration||Maximum print size(inches)||Heating bed||layer thickness||Customer support||Assembly time||Warranty|
|PLA,ABS,HIPS,More||Yes||7.8"x7.8"x8.6"||Yes||50-400 microns||Excellent||6-8 Hours||One Year||Buy on Amazon|
- What Are The Benefits Of Building Your Own 3D Printer From A Kit?
- What Are Some Of The Features Included With This Printer Kit?
- What Do You Get With The Kit?
- What Software Is This Printer Compatible With?
- Is This Kit Easy To Assemble?
- What Type Of Support Is Available From FLSUN?
- What Customers Are Saying
- Final Verdict
What Are The Benefits Of Building Your Own 3D Printer From A Kit?
Building your own 3D printer has many benefits and purchasing a kit means that you’ll have all the necessary parts at hand to complete the project.
The benefits include:
- You’ll get a much more advanced 3D printer with greater functionality for a much lower cost.
- You’ll learn a lot about how a 3D printer works as you’re putting it together.
- You’ll find it much easier to troubleshoot any problems as you’ll understand how all the moving parts work.
- You’ll always be able to make improvements and add useful bits to your printer as you become more experienced.
- You’ll be able to use free open source software for slicing your print files and controlling your printer.
- You’ll find a huge support community who you can share experiences with and learn from.
Probably the only disadvantage of building a 3D printer from a kit is that you need to do your own calibration. This can take some time and a lot of patience. The FLSUN i3 has an auto leveling system however, which will make it much easier to level the build plate and therefore produce excellent quality prints without the frustration.
What Are Some Of The Features Included With This Printer Kit?
There are some excellent features included with this 3D printer kit which you’d normally only find with higher priced fully assembled printers.
Automatic Leveling Sensor.
The auto leveling sensor allows you to calibrate and level the print bed much easier than trying to do it manually. This will save you a lot of time and frustration in trying to get the print bed level and will help you to produce better quality prints.
Heated Print Bed.
The print bed that is included in this kit is an aluminum plate which is 3mm thick. This means that it’s strong and stable.
The maximum build volume is 7.8 inches x 7.8 inches x 8.6 inches. This gives you plenty of room to print almost anything you want.
The bed can be heated up to 110 degrees Celsius so that you can print with a variety of different filaments.
Strong Metal Frame.
The frame on this printer is metal which guarantees stability and durability. Having a stable printer is important because it means that you will produce excellent prints.
Precision Y-axis Positioning.
Calibrating your 3D printer can be quite difficult but the high precision Y-axis positioning plate on this printer will make it so much easier. This will cut your calibrating time down significantly.
Integrated Motherboard With Double Fan System.
The motherboard that comes with this printer is fully integrated and has a twin fan cooling system. This reduces the risk of failure and will ensure your printer keeps performing just as you want it to.
The board is a standard Arduino ramps pi3 1.4 mega 2560.
Because you don’t always want to have your 3D printer connected to your computer, this kit comes with an LCD display unit. This means you can control the printer easily without connecting to a computer.
Bowden Extruder With 2 Cooling Fans.
The Bowden extruder in this kit can reach temperatures up to 260 degrees Celsius to suit a variety of different filaments. It also has two cooling fans to ensure that it never gets too hot to cause print failures.
Supports The Use Of Many Different Filaments.
Unlike a lot of fully assembled printers in the lower price brackets, this printer is compatible with a large number of different filament types.
It can happily print with ABS, PLA, Wood, HIPS, Nylon, PVA, Poly and TPU. All you need to worry about is setting the correct parameters in the slicing software.
Full Warranty And Lifetime Support.
You can relax in the knowledge that this printer kit comes with a 1 year full manufacturer’s warranty in case something is faulty when you get your kit.
FLSUN also offer lifetime support for their printer kits and they have expert technicians to help you along the way.
What Do You Get With The Kit?
This is a complete 3D printer kit. Everything you need is included so that after you’ve finished assembling the kit, you’ll be able to start printing your 3D models.
Here’s a list of the items that are included with this printer kit:
- All the pieces necessary to build the frame and moving parts of the printer including the aluminum frame, mostly injection molded parts as well as some plexiglass parts.
- All the hardware to put the printer together.
- The stepper motors and rods.
- The auto leveling system.
- The heated print bed which Is a MK3 3mm thick aluminum plate with soldered wires.
- The fan cooled 240 watt power supply.
- Two cooling fans for the Bowden extruder.
- The ramps 1.4 motherboard.
- 2 small rolls of filament.
- Some Allen keys.
- A spare nozzle.
- A roll of masking tape.
- One 8 GB SD card which includes instruction files and software.
- An SD card reader.
- A 2004 LCD display so that you can print without being connected to a computer.
What Software Is This Printer Compatible With?
The FLSUN i3 printer kit comes with Repetier Host which is on the SD card.
Being a replica Prusa i3 printer however, means that you should be able to use most open source slicing software with this printer.
Is This Kit Easy To Assemble?
When you get your package you’ll find that all the parts are well packed in individually numbered boxes.
Most customer reviews that we read confirmed that this kit was fairly easy to assemble as long as you have some patience and a little technical aptitude. Even people new to 3D printing did not have any difficulty assembling this printer.
You’ll find complete assembly instructions in the manual which is on the SD card. These look to be easy step-by-step instructions with mainly photos to guide you along the process.
There are also some YouTube videos showing the complete assembly process from start to finish with text captions highlighting the most important points.
You’ll also find some user communities online if you need some additional advice or help with certain aspects.
There’s an active Facebook group with over 2000 members where you can find advice and tips. Here you can easily ask any questions that you may have. When we visited the page we found some interesting posts about troubleshooting and using different types of software.
We also discovered a group dedicated to the FLSUN i3 on Thingiverse with around 170 members and plenty of print files you can make with the printer. Among the print files there are a lot of objects you could print to upgrade your 3D printer including sensor mounts, a fan mount, a vibration damper and a spool holder.
While researching this printer kit we also came across a very handy website called Instructables.com. We did a search on “FLSUN i3” and found a huge collection of videos on printer assembly, building an enclosure for the printer and tips and tricks for producing quality prints.
What Type Of Support Is Available From FLSUN?
FLSUN offer lifetime technical support with their printer kits. From what we’ve read on user reviews their support is excellent.
You will usually get a response very quickly from their technical team and if you have any defective or non working parts, they’ll quickly send you a replacement.
We also found that the technical support team were very active online answering questions and offering replacement parts to those people who were having some issues.
What Customers Are Saying
Overall most reviews that we read were very positive. Many customers commented on how easy this kit was to assemble following the instructions. Some said that a little technical or mechanical knowledge would be useful to make assembly easier.
A number of people were impressed with the solid construction of the frame of the printer and said that it was very stable once assembled.
What we found that stood out most of all was how happy customers were with the technical support. There were a number of customers who had some minor issues with parts and all of them were extremely impressed with the fast and helpful response they received from FLSUN.
We also found that FLSUN took on board some of the improvements suggested by customers and have since improved some of the parts to reflect those suggestions.
If you enjoy putting things together and have a little technical aptitude then the FLSUN Prusa i3 printer kit would make a good choice. Even complete 3D printing beginners found this kit easy to assemble following the instructions.
This is a good quality kit and the metal frame makes the printer extremely stable and durable which means your prints will be of great quality and detail.
The ability to make improvements and add extra enhancements makes this printer kit an excellent investment for your 3D printing hobby.