I got this cute little 3D printer from the local MicroCenter two days ago. I know, I know, not everyone has MicroCenter around.
Anyhow, the printer is Wanhao Duplicator I3 Mini, it is OEM made for MicroCenter as “PowerSpec” brand. It is not the pinnacle of engineering, but it is quite amazing when it comes to cost cutting. Very minimal design – just the basics, but quite usable.
It has this cute front panel with graphic LCD:
I believe Monoprice sells a version of this printer with better features. It’s a good choice if you are looking to get into the hobby and don’t want to break the bank. The Monoprice version is $50 more expensive, but has way better features like heated bed and wifi support.
Here is a “torture test” I printed with the printer in it’s stock configuration with the sample filament that came with it. It is not bad at all.
The main reason I got this printer was to test my 3D printer controller board (open source designs on github.com here). I wanted something small that would fit on my desk and this printer was an excellent choice. Naturally I butchered it to connect my controller:
After a day of tweaking the Marlin firmware, I managed to get it to work:
I printed for about 3 hour yesterday, constantly checking the motor drivers for overheating, but they were not even breaking a sweat.
The motors are very quiet, unlike my screeching power supply on the video. Next, I’ll have to design a box for the controller, it is quite unsightly sitting like that with all cables.