Reprap Prusa I3 Review

Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit with Molded Plastic Parts

EKoCycle Rating:-

8.7/10
Pros
  • High quality
  • Easy to assemble
  • High-quality spares 
  • High resolution
Cons
  • Acrylic frame
  • No auto-leveling

3d printers Finding the right 3D printer that will help you actualize your ideas and designs is never a cakewalk. Many  3d printers are available. However, not all of them have the versatility and flexibility to give you most, if not everything you need. And, as usual, the last thing you want is to get frustrated because you couldn’t find a befitting 3d printer. 

Though few, there are some great 3d printers who can get the work done. The Reprap Prusa I3 3D Printer is one of them. One of the key factors that make it a great choice is the ease of assembly. Yes, you don’t have to be a pro at it. Plus, the parts of the machine makes things easy. These are manufactured in the USA. No doubt, these are durable and high quality. This printer is a boon if you are low on budget but need high-quality printing.  Some of the key features of this printer are the borosilicate heated glass bed and the acrylic body.

But what does it mean to you? Should you be buying it? Read along and find out.

Our Research

To come up with this comprehensive review of the Reprap Prusa i3 3d printer, we went through lots of sites online. Most of the sites were on 3d printing technology. Our aim was to figure out what the majority was using and try to understand why. 

We also went through hundreds of reviews from clients who purchased this printer in the past. Through their reviews, we could tell the kind of experiences they had. This also helped us understand if they were in a position to recommend the product to other potential buyers. 

In the end, we got solid information which enabled us to present correct and accurate information about the Reprap Prusa i3 3d printer.

Things to Consider Before Buying a 3D Printer

3D printing is not all about aesthetics in the final product. If you are looking forward to reducing costs, generating less waste, reducing the time you need to complete a project, reduce errors and gain a competitive edge over your competition, then you have every reason to consider a versatile 3d printer like the Reprap Prusa i3 3d printer.

But before you walk into the store and pick the first printer on the shelves, here is a brief look at some of the factors you should consider-:

  • What you want to print

Before delving into the various types of 3d printers, you need to be very certain about what you intend to print. 3D printers are available in a variety of types with varying capabilities. 

Therefore, it is vital that you know what you want to print, and the scale of your printing. You should also know the frequency with which you will be using the machine.

  • Your preferred 3D printer style

Do you prefer Fused Deposition Modeling or you tend to lean towards vats of liquid resin such as Selective Laser Sintering – SLS, Digital Light Processing – DLP or Stereolithography?

  • Quality features

Check for high-quality features such as dual filament support, heated glass beds, touch screen user interface, build volume, and room for printing among others.

  • The safety features

A good 3d printer must have advanced safety features. This is not just to preserve the integrity of the work. It is also to ensure that the machine is not prone to heat damage and excess formation at the filament. These are vital for the longevity of the machine.

Some of the other factors you need to have in mind include the printer’s resolution and the brand since these two have a direct impact on the quality.

Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit Review

an affordable 3D printer with modern features

Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit is a quality and versatile product by RepRapGuru. Its parts are from a US company. This is a subtle indication that it is not one of those cheap models from China. Since it is not a plug-n-play model, you have to assemble it when you buy it. 

 However, the assembly process is a breeze and not something you should think about too much.

It features a simple, yet versatile design with all the components you may need for your 3D printing needs. They are available in two variations – a black one and a clear version. This review is for the clear model.If you are a hobbyist who doesn’t want to spend a fortune in the pursuit of your 3d printing dreams, then this model is for you. It comes with the kinds of features you may need for quality prints. Also, it is easy to use and you don’t have to be a guru in any way for you to find your way around it. 

Therefore, if you are after affordability, versatility, and quality for your 3d printing, then this is one of the best printers you will find in the market today.

Best Features and Benefits

The Reprap Prusa i3 3d printer comes with a wide range of features which makes it superior compared to most models in the market today. Here is a brief look at some of the features are-:

  • Acrylic frame design

Acrylic frames have been a staple for most Prusa i3 printers, and they are also featured in this Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit. One of the greatest benefits of this feature is that they are cheaper and lightweight. 

They also won’t crack or break easily compared to brittle materials such as aluminum. And as far as strength goes, acrylic is very strong and will grant you the longevity you desire to continue using a sturdy printer for long.

  • Mid-range size

The size of this printer is not one that will leave you scratching your head on where to put it. The actual size is about 8 x 8 x 7 inches. 

This is not big enough and will fit the space requirements for most hobbyists interested in 3D printing. Truthfully, it is relatively smaller than most of its competitors you will encounter in the market today.

  • A single extruder

The Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit features a single extruder that supports the 1.75mm size filament. As you already know, single extruders come with certain limitations that most people may not like. 

For example, a single extruder can print single color objects only. This may be seen as a shortcoming in this Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit. However, it is something you can easily upgrade in the future.

  • Standard cone-shaped nozzle

The Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit has the standard cone-shaped nozzle with a 0.5mm tip. Again, the Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit supports only one nozzle, implying that you can get only a single print from the printer.

  • Borosilicate heated glass bed

The printer comes with an 8 x 8-inch borosilicate heated bed glass. This is, by far, one of the major highlights of this printer. The heated bed glass has a dual power capacity, and will comfortably accommodate both 12V and 24V. 

One of the benefits that come with the heated bed is that it can easily print ABS filament objects. Perhaps the only downside to this product is that it uses an acrylic mounting plate for the bed. With such, there may be possibilities of warping if the bed attains higher temperatures. 

This will not only be bad news for the quality of the prints but also may threaten the longevity of the entire set up.

  • Manual calibration

Calibration is a vital feature in any printing machine. For 3d printers, it even plays a major role since it has a great impact on the overall quality of the print. 

With the Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit, the labeling is done manually. This is because the set up doesn’t come with auto-leveling capabilities. This is another major drawback of this machine. 

However, if you are willing to commit some time to learn, then through experience, you can become very good at it. Remember, proper calibration is vital for smooth printing.

  • SD slot for LCD Panel

The Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit doesn’t come with an LCD panel like the majority would expect. However, all is not lost for those who would love to include this feature in this particular model. 

This is because it comes with a provision and an SD slot that you can use to fix your own LCD panel. The LCD kits are available separately and you can easily buy them when purchasing the printer. 

The beauty of these panels is that they make it possible for you to work directly without necessarily having to connect the kit to the computer all the time. 

If this is a feature you can’t live without, then don’t shy away from this machine because it is a simple modification that you can easily make post-purchase.

  • Software Flexibility

With the Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit, you have the versatility to work with both Mac and PC. If you have Ubuntu 14 or Linux, then you are also in luck because it supports both. 

The default control software with this unit, however, is the Repeater Host. It comes with detailed instructions, including how you can use it with other programs such as Cura.

  • Dual voltage power supply

You have the freedom to use either 220V or 110 volts with this unit. This makes it so easy for consumers out of the USA who may have different power ratings to use it as well. 

As such, there are no modifications or changes regarding compatibility with your power system that you need to make upon receiving it. With the 110v standard US wall outlet plug and code, you will be ready to roll once you are done with the assembly.

  • Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit accessories

The Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit comes with a decent set of accessories that are sufficient enough to get you going. 

They include all the necessary wires already fitted with the connectors, Borosilicate heat bed glass, and longer motor wires. If you want additional accessories, then you will have to purchase them separately.

Pros: Things We Love!​

  • High quality
  • Easy to assemble
  • High-quality spares and replacement
  • High resolution
  • Good value for money and great support from the manufacturer

Cons: Points of Improvement

  • Acrylic frame
  • No auto-leveling
  • Lacks LCD

Alternatives to Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit

1. Maker Farm Pegasus 3D Printer

This is a low-key 3d printer that won’t feature in the lists of the top 3D printers. However, it is one of the best alternatives to Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit. Its quality is decent and relatively affordable compared to the Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit.

However, it has a more robust construction with quality parts and features such as a graphical LCD interface that you will not find in the Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit. If you are afraid of the shaky construction of the Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit and you need a sturdier option, then this will be a great one for you.

Check: Qidi Tech X-Smart Review

2. Folger Tech 2020 Prusa i3

This is another great DIY 3d printer made in the United States and another great alternative to the Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit. Unlike Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit which uses an acrylic frame, it features a rigid aluminum frame that enhances its longevity and sturdiness during use.

At only $300, it is relatively affordable compared to the Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit. Also, it comes with a USB provision and not just an SD slot like the Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit. 

The Folger Tech 202 Prusa i3 3d printer is recommended for hobbyists looking for a versatile and more affordable printer to the Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit.

3. Flsun Prusa i3 Plus

Another alternative to Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit is the Flsun Prusa i3 Plus. This is made in China, though it has demonstrated that it is versatile enough and can consistently give great results.

Unlike Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit, it comes with an auto-leveling system, a touch screen interface, and a dual nozzle setup. This is for you if you don’t mind Chinese-manufactured machines and also if you are pressed for budget, but you still need a great 3d printer.

Final verdict

Finding a 3d printer that will let you implement your design ideas is never easy. With so many knock-offs in the market today, you will never know when you are getting scammed unless you have solid information on the kind of printer you want. 

The Reprap Prusa i3 3D Printer Kit is not only a high-quality printer but also it is affordable and within the reach of many people. Its output is very good, and it is also easy to set up and operate. Though it has a few shortcomings, its overall experience is great. With it comes a decent 3d printing experience.