The Top 3 Best DIY 3D Printer Kits: How to Choose & Where to Buy

Official Creality Ender 3 Pro DIY 3D Printer with Removable Build Surface Plate

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  • Extremely affordable machine

  • Easy assembly

  • Fully open-source

  • Large build plate

  • It comes with the option to restore and resume a print after power loss or disconnection

  • UL Certified power supply

PlGeeetech Prusa I3 Pro W 3D Printer DIY Kit with WiFi Cloudus

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  • Extremely affordable

  • Works with a wide range of materials

  • Due to the smaller nozzle, the machine is suitable for more fine prints

  • The Prusa i3 is a great option for those who are into building things and tinkering

  • The direct drive extruder makes it easier to print

  • High print quality

ANYCUBIC Chiron 3D Printer Kit with Ultrabase Heatbed

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  • Extra-large build volume

  • Works with a wide range of materials, including PLA, ABS, HIPS, Wood, TPU

  • Easy assembling process, easy to use

  • Built-in automatic bed leveling

  • Prints extremely precise, with high print quality

  • It comes with an instructions manual

Although we keep amazing ourselves about the abilities of 3D printers and even the invention of 3D printing itself, and it seemed quite inaccessible, a new era has come. Where accessing a printer like this used to go hand in hand with a $1,500 – $6,000 price tag, nowadays, a 3D printer is available with a modest price tag of around $500. The reason for that huge price difference? Well, in case you are a fan of everything DIY (just like us), you will probably like this: this 3D printer comes unassembled in a kit for you to get crafty and put it all together.

Not only will you be able to print several things in 3D, but you will also know every little step and trick of the trade when it comes down to the way the machine works. On top of that, how cool is it to be able to tell your friends and family that you built your own DIY 3D printer? All of this to say that a DIY 3D printer kit is a perfect option for those who love DIY, have a tighter budget, and are looking for a 3D printer. 

But what is the best DIY 3D printer kit? With all the different options to choose from, it can be hard to determine all the features and specifics to consider. That’s why, in this article, we have reviewed the top 3 best choices on DIY 3D printer kits. Next to that, you will find an extensive buyers’ guide with different things to consider when buying your (first) kit. Hopefully, you will enjoy our complete guide on the best DIY 3D Printer Kits. Read on below to find out more! 


The Best DIY 3D Printer Kits Reviewed.

Putting together your own DIY 3D printer can be a very satisfying activity to do. Depending on the type of printer and its size, assembling can take you up to 3 to 9 hours. A great and easy activity for a rainy Sunday, right? Ready to build your own DIY 3D printer? Let’s check out below our 3 best options for DIY 3D printer kits, based on price, build volume, user-friendliness, and more.

#1: Official Creality Ender 3 Pro DIY 3D Printer with Removable Build Surface Plate

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Specifications

Brand: Creality Ender

Build volume: 220 x 220 x 250mm

Nozzle: Single 0.4 mm

Filament: 1.75 mm

Price level: $$

Printing speed: 180 mm/s

Layer resolution: 0.1 – 0.4mm (100-400 microns)

Connectivity: SD card reader, USB

Number of extruders: 1

Print precision: +/- 0.1mm

For the best entry-level 3d printing kit, the Creality Ender 3 Pro might be your best option. First, the machine is reasonably priced and is equipped with many features almost similar to professional 3D printers because of the price. What’s more, if the idea of assembling your own 3D printer doesn’t speak to you that much… The Creality Ender also meets those needs since the package comes in semi-assembled. This results in an easy to set up kit!

What stands out in this 3D printer kit is the removable build surface plate that ensures consistent temperature throughout the building surface. Next to that, the printer’s building volume is significantly bigger than we have seen at other competing DIY 3D printer kits on the list. 

As mentioned above, we consider the Creality Ender 3 Pro as a great option for first-time 3D printers, or even kids! The Creality Ender community is massive and offers to support to the 3D printer user enthusiast with many helpful tips, tricks, and answers to all your questions about the DIY Printer kit.

Pros

  • Extremely affordable machine
  • Easy assembly
  • Fully open-source
  • Large build plate
  • It comes with the option to restore and resume a print after power loss or disconnection
  • UL Certified power supply

Cons

  • The magnetic bed isn’t always easy to use
  • The control board isn’t covered
  • It might be hard to level the bed as the print bed is not 100% flat

#2: Geeetech Prusa I3 Pro W 3D Printer DIY Kit with WiFi Cloud

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Specifications

Brand: Geeetech

Build volume: 200 x 200 x 180mm

Nozzle: 0.3 mm

Filament: 1.75 mm

Price level: $

Printing speed: 180 mm/s

Layer resolution: 0.1 – 0.3mm 

Connectivity: SD card reader, USB, WiFi

Number of extruders: 1

Print precision: +/- 0.1mm

With a slightly longer assembly time (with instructions manual), this wooden 3d printer kit by Geeetech is all worth it. Less suitable for complete newbies to 3D printers (and their assembly), the Prusa i3 Pro does the trick for those who have a  slight experience. When assembled, the design is very minimalistic. What you see is what you get. However, thanks to the sturdy wooden frame, the printer is strong and stable.

Many of the different parts of the machine are noteworthy as well. The glass building space with modest measurements allows you to make many cool designs with high precision. The Prusa i3 is equipped with an auto-calibration option, a big plus for a DIY kit on this price-level! Even though the assembly of this machine can be a tricky job to do, Geeetech did include extensive instructions, bundled in a clear manual to assist you during the process. The Prusa i3 3D printer also includes an LCD screen to illuminate your working area and is compatible with Wi-Fi connectivity.

The Geeetech Prusa i3 is considered a great low-budget option for those who already know how to find their way around these electronic miracles.

Pros

  • Extremely affordable
  • Works with a wide range of materials
  • Due to the smaller nozzle, the machine is suitable for more fine prints.
  • The Prusa i3 is a great option for those who are into building things and tinkering.
  • The direct drive extruder makes it easier to print
  • High print quality

Cons

  • Assembly takes up some time as it is slightly more complicated.
  • The package doesn’t include an extruder fan.
  • Less suitable for beginners

#3: ANYCUBIC Chiron 3D Printer Kit with Ultrabase Heatbed

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Specifications

Brand: ANYCUBIC

Build volume: 400 x 400 x 450mm

Nozzle: 0.4 mm

Filament: 1.75 mm

Price level: $$$

Printing speed: 200 mm/s

Layer resolution: 0.1 – 0.3mm 

Connectivity: SD card reader, USB

Number of extruders: 1

Print precision: +/- 0.1mm

If you are looking for an extra-large build volume and have enough space for a larger 3D printer in the house, then ANYCUBIC’s Chiron model meets your needs without a doubt. The building size goes typically hand in hand with the price of this 3D printer kit; however, we wouldn’t say it is that much of an expensive buy. With this kit, you are sure to purchase with great value for money.

The printing bed of this DIY printer is compatible with most filaments, and the short-distance extruder allows for a smooth release of the melted filaments. The Chiron is equipped with a high definition touchscreen display to control and operate your device. The user interface is intuitive and easy to figure out. Although leveling and calibrating this 3D printer takes some time, your patience will be rewarded with high-quality, bigger-sized prints.

Pros

  • Extra-large build volume
  • Works with a wide range of materials, including PLA, ABS, HIPS, Wood, TPU
  • Easy assembling process, easy to use
  • Built-in automatic bed leveling
  • Prints extremely precise, with high print quality
  • It comes with an instructions manual

Cons

  • The fans operate somewhat loud
  • Calibrating the bed might be challenging and less easy than expected

Our Verdict: What is the best DIY 3d printer?

Of course, this completely depends on your familiarity with 3D printing, your experience level, and what you will use the printer for most. However, according to us, all three reviewed options are worth every penny. Each of them come with their pros and cons. The number one choice to us that deserves the title of best DIY 3d printer is the Creality Ender 3 Pro. A nice entry-level 3d printer kit that is easy to assemble and has a modest price level. Needless to say, it is a great option for when you are looking to try 3D printing together with the entire family! 


Buyers’ Guide

Especially when you are a complete newbie when it comes to 3D printing and 3D printers in general, you are likely seeking some more background information before you purchase the best DIY 3D printer for you. That’s why we have put together a detailed buying guide for you to read that hopefully answers all your questions. 

3D Printers 101

A 3D printer is a printing device that allows you to create and produce physical products that you design and construct yourself with a computer’s help. In short, it is generally a box with a head that puts down layers of a special plastic one over another. The heated plastic solidifies and produces a three-dimensional copy of the design you have made.

3D printers can print all sorts of little items such as game pieces and figurines. More practically, a 3D printer could be used for producing many of the various objects we already use today. 

Read below a few commonly asked questions around 3D printers themselves.

Can I build my own 3d printer?

Yes, you can. As reviewed in this article, nowadays, there are 3D printer kits available to purchase. These kits include all the pieces of a construction kit that form a 3D printer to build yourself. The main benefit of buying a kit similar to this one is that its price is significantly lower than buying a professional 3D printer in whole, and the ability to modify and adjust.

Is it worth buying a 3d printer?

When 3D printing is something you are very passionate about, buying a 3D printing device might be worth it. However, it is key to keep in mind that you can not make anything with a 3D printer. Consider what you are planning to use the device for, and from that, decide if a 3D printer with a price tag similar to this one meets your needs.

What cool things can I make with a 3d printer?

A 3D printer can be used to produce many different things. Although the possibilities vary per type of printer and the model, they allow you to make both useful items and ‘fun’ items. A few of those include:

  • Candleholder
  • Phone case
  • Game pieces
  • (Children’s) drawings brought to life
  • Household items, such as a pencil holder, (small) clocks, vases

And, of course, many more! However, the abilities of your 3D printer may vary. Keep in mind that you will need a bigger build volume for larger projects.

Is it safe to 3d print overnight?

To make sure that you’re using it safely, no. Although it can take up to a lot of hours for the printer to finish 3d prints, it is not recommended to leave your printer unattended. This has to do with the high temperatures that come in during the printing process. To keep safe and don’t risk any damaged printer due to malfunctions unsolved right away, burning parts or, even worse, fire: don’t leave your printer unattended! 

Choosing the right DIY 3D printer kit

An important part of choosing the right 3d printer kit is determining what you will need the 3D printer for. Will you mostly use it for small objects? You can then opt for a printer with a smaller printing volume, and maybe you can even compromise on the printing speed. Other things to mind are, of course, the budget, the level of easiness to assemble your kit, and the overall ease of use.

Pricing

The price tag is always important when it comes to a bigger buy like this. Below, we have discussed the three most important questions around the price of a 3d printer kit.

Is it cheaper to build your own 3d printer?

Yes. Compared to buying a complete 3d printer, a 3d printer kit is less costly. It does take you some hours to assemble, but it also allows you to customize your printer with the parts you wish to optimize the printer completely to your needs.

How much does a 3d printer cost?

Depending on your needs, most entry-level and hobbyist 3D printers and kits are starting from $200 and may go up to around $1,000. Speaking of professional 3D printers, the price can go up to even $6,500. 

How much should I pay for a 3d printer?

Once again, please find out how often you will use your printer, what you will use it for, and your budget. When you are completely new to 3D printing, we recommend starting with an entry-level printer kit for around $300. The benefit of that is that you can easily “upgrade” a self-built 3d printer with new parts in most cases. Keep in mind that the price plays a huge role in the different features of the 3D printer. 


A Final Word

3D printing and putting your own 3D printer together with one of the best 3D printer kits is perfectly suitable for those who are into DIY, building, and constructing things. A printer like this allows you to create many different objects that can be of use in the house or around the house. Purchasing a 3D printer kit is often a good value for money purchase because of its great difference in price compared to a 3D printer that is ready to use out-of-the-box.

Although 3D printing always sounded like an expensive hobby, it doesn’t have to be! Hopefully, our review article and detailed buyers’ guide on the best DIY 3D printer kits have helped you get more into 3D printing and find yourself the best DIY 3D printer that meets your needs. 

Have you started 3D printing yet, and are you using a DIY, self-assembled version? And what is the best DIY 3D printer according to you? Let us know in the comments below. 

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