The Prusa Mini, a small but versatile 3D-printer
Model Engineers' Workshop|April 2020
Martin Petersen reviews a new, compact 3D printer
Martin Petersen

Prusa Research are well known for their I3 series 3D-printers, the current model is I3Mk3S that has been in the market since spring 2019. In October Prusa released the new Prusa Mini Printer, a somewhat smaller 3D printer with a price tag that is less than half of the Prusa I3Mk3S kit. The Prusa web shop opened for pre-orders on October 24 and got more than 1000 orders during the first 24 hours, although the lead time was about 6 weeks, photos 1 and 2. In various 3D-printing forums the design was discussed and there were a lot of questions regarding the single Z-column design, is it stable enough to get a good printing quality? After running the printer day and night for several weeks I can confirm that stability is no problem, the print quality of the Prusa Mini is even better than the I3Mk3, photos 3 and 4.

The specification for the printer is quite promising. Print volume is 180x180x180 mm (7 x 7 x 7”), magnetic heat bed with removable spring steel sheet, maximum nozzle temperature of 280 °C and maximum bed temperature of 100 °C enabling printing in the most frequently used 3D materials such as PLA, PETG, ABS, ASA and flex, but too low for some exotic materials. The extruder uses V6 standard nozzles with a diameter up to 1 mm. A brand new 32-bit motherboard named Buddy controls the printer. The user interface is handled by a rotary encoder on the LCDmodule that has a 65k colour LCD. The Mini uses USB as print medium but can also be connected by LAN and Wi-fi (this needs a separate module that is yet not available). The software is prepared for external control for running the Mini in print farms, but this feature is yet not enabled.

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