Alunar 3D Desktop Printer Review 2019 – is the Alunar 3D Desktop Printer worth the money? Review of features, pricing, print quality and more.
Why do you need a 3D printer or what exactly is it? If you have used a standard desktop printer before (be it inkjet or laser), you should be knowing the printout does not contain any depth, although you can create an illusion of depth with the help of shadows and other drawing techniques. This is classified as a 2D (two dimensional) printer. On the one hand, 2D printers print images on the “X” (Horizontal)” and “Y” (Vertical) scale. On the other hand, the 3D printers provides you with the opportunity of printing the “Z” (Depth) scale too. This brings up a whole new world of opportunities, as 3D printers allow you to create almost anything from paper towel holders, to smartphone cases, and also create spare parts for your appliances and furniture. Need a safety razor in the middle of the night? Create one with this type of printer. A quick online search will reveal details about the various brands and models of 3D printers. In this particular review, I shall be focusing on the Alunar 3D Desktop Printer, which is a clone of the extremely popular Prusa (i3) model in depth, along with its specifications as well as its pros and cons. As I have already mentioned, this is the perfect model for creative individuals, planning to purchase a budgetary range three dimensional printer.
Alunar 3D Desktop Printer Review
At $169.99, this is the cheapest 3 dimensional desktop printer available in the market. However, this unit does not ship assembled, meaning that you receive it in kit form, and will have to assemble the parts after you have unboxed them. This is no big deal if you follow the assembling details provided with the kit, as well as view some YouTube videos. The added advantage is that you get the opportunity to understand more about the 3D technology.
Before purchasing such a printer, you should check the maximum size that it can print. As mentioned previously, the printing dimensions are on an X, Y, and Z scale. Never opt for a printer that does not offer a build area less than five inches on each of these scales. This model by Alumnar prints on a scale of 8″x8″x8,” ensuring that the build volume is quite comfortable and is not a limiting factor.
Vertical resolution (also known as layer height or layer thickness) is the minimum thickness of any layer that the printer can produce in a single pass. The smoothness of the printed surface depends on this. The smaller the layer thickness, the smoother the printed surface. However, you should remember that the printing process takes a longer time for finer layers because the printer has to make more passes to produce more layers. The model I am reviewing has a thickness range of 0.05mm to 0.3mm. This type of layer resolution allows you to create realistic objects.
Most available 3D printers use standard filaments… the thermoplastic feedstock for fused deposition modeling 3D printers… such as Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) and Polylactic Acid (PLA). The latter is quite low-wrap and odorless filament. It also works efficiently without a heated bed too. Compared to it, ABS filament is less brittle and can withstand higher temperatures as well. Alunar works perfectly with both of those filaments as well as Wood Polymer. Another specialty of this printer is that you can use Nylon filament as well, allowing you to print durable and stronger objects. Warning! The kit does not contain the filament and you have to purchase it separately. Amazon has a special offer using which you can purchase a table wall mount rack plus filament together with the printer. Going for this offer means that you do not have to wait for the filament to arrive before you can start using this printer.
The printer’s frame is extremely important as it supports the electrical and mechanical components that perform the actual printing work. It also determines the build volume of the printer. Although the 8mm laser cut acrylic frame of the Alunar is sufficient enough to withstand the load, it is not as strong as steel or aluminum frames.
Also known as the build bed or print bed, the build platform is the part of the printer that keeps extruded plastic warm, to prevent warping, thereby, improving the quality of printing. The Alunar 3D Desktop Printer is fixed with a super flat aluminum alloy plus MK2A. This allows it to easily sustain temperatures up to 110 degrees Centigrade.
The extruder is the 3D printer’s component, which expels material in either semi liquid or liquid form so as to deposit it in consecutive layers within the 3D printing volume. Be prepared to be disappointed if you want to use multiple materials of different colors for printing an object using different hues, as the Alunar has just a single extruder. This implies that you can only print single color objects with it. However, this is justified by the low price of the printer. If you want a 3D printer that can print in two colors, be prepared to pay in excess of $800.
The nozzle is the part of the 3D printer that deposits molten filament into the build area. The size of this component determines how much filament the printer can print simultaneously. The 0.4mm nozzle of the Alumar is 0.4mm in size, which is quite common as preferable as well.
This printer, apart from operating on the popular Windows operating system, also works with the Macintosh and Linux operating systems, meaning that you can easily use it with your existing computer, unless you are one of the rare types that still depends on the DOS operating system.
Controlling software and file formats
Alunar works with slicer software such as the Python based Printrun as well as with Repetier-Host. The included liquid crystal display (LCD) screen fitted on the printer allows for easy navigation. The Alunar 3D desktop printer uses g-code and .stl formats for printing.
The SD card included with the printer allows you save files on it and use this device as a standalone printer, or connect it with your computer through a USB port.
• High build volume
• Pocket friendly price
• LCD display panel
• Heated print bed
• Occasional warping
• Single extruder
Charles Stephenson received a Masters Degree in Engineering from MIT University. Charles has been working in the Industrial 3D Printing industry for over 5 years. Charles regularly contributes content to several 3D Printing websites including Pirate3D.com.