What are the pros and cons of collecting parts yourself, versus getting a DIY kit and then modifying it?

  • I'm thinking about buliding my own 3D printer from scratch.

    Is it better to buy a starter DIY kit and try to build your printer around it, or to order separate parts for printer, and then to combine a printer?

    Hi. It seems like your question really is "What are the pros and cons of collecting parts yourself, versus getting a kit and then modifying it?". Currently, I think your question **title** poorly reflect that intention (it is too generic), and also, your second paragraph does not seem to add anything to the question, which means you would be better off removing it. Also, in your last paragraph, try to ask the question so that it does not request an opinion based answer, as such questions are generally frowned upon in the SE community.

    I've edited it :)

    It looks better now, in my opinion. :)

    Hi @josipIvic, I just noticed that you have not accepted any of the answers yet. Are you still looking for an answer to this question?

  • From a general point of view, there are a few things to consider.

    If you buy a kit:


    • You get some insurance that you have all the parts that you need to get a functional printer - all the electronics, structure, bolts, nuts, screws, washers, wires and so on.

    • Most likely, all the parts you get are made to fit together.

    • You will (usually) get a manual, often a community that can help you out, and sometimes even technical support.

    • Sometimes, it can be cheaper than buying each part separately (but it can also be more expensive)


    • You have limited/no options to customize your printer to your own preferences without purchasing additional parts.

    • Some kits can be difficult to upgrade later or may be locked to some configuration or software.

    My opinion:

    The way I look at it, the better option for you depends on how you want to spend your time. That is:

    1. If you get a kit, you can spend more time building.

    2. If you collect all the parts yourself, you will have to spend time planning, ordering parts (possibly multiple times) in addition to actually building the printer. A possible lack of manuals could also increase the building difficulty.

    If you don't already own a 3D printer, I would recommend getting a kit, simply because struggling with trivial things like parts not fitting together can take away the fun for many people.

    Nice answer. Would you consider also pointing out that kits can also be more expensive? Something like: "It can be cheaper than buying each part separately (but it also can be more expensive)."

    @hroncok, thanks for your comment! You are right. Kits are certainly not always cheaper.

    I'd recommend buying a kit for your first printer and building your second, if for no other reason than you will probably want/need to print at least one part when you build your own, and if you don't have a working printer...

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Content dated before 7/24/2021 11:53 AM