V0.1 final review (LDO kit)

The Voron 0.1 is the latest iteration of the voron design teams smallest printer design offering. It features a corexy kinematic system, a 120mm cubed build volume and a fully enclosed design. The printer is capable of very high speeds in it’s stock configuration and specialises in materials that benefit from the enclosed design (ABS and PETG). In my opinion it is the perfect companion/second printer option because it can print replacement parts/upgrades for much larger printers but doesn’t take up an entire desk to itself!

This kit was purchased using my own money and I am in no way sponsored or affiliated with LDO or the Voron Design team. To see the rest of the build in more detail take a look here

Packaging

The box arrived with your usual minor signs of shipping on the exterior. A few scuffed edges and some dented box corners but nothing unexpected from a large box being delivered through the postal system. Upon opening you will be greeted with some paper packaging material stopping the boxes slide around and then a series of smaller boxes. These boxes are individually labelled with their contents, which is grouped by the type of functionality i.e. frame kit, motor kit.

All the internal boxes were in very good condition and as an added bonus all the nuts and bolts were in separate neatly labelled packets which greatly assists in quick identification during the build process. A neat little touch is that each individual extrusion is protected preventing any damage to the nicely anodised surface. I do question if there could be a more ecologically friendly method of achieving this though as you end up with quite a pile of plastic packaging which can only be thrown into landfill.

Hardware

There is a reason that the LDO kit has such a strong following and is the first kit from china to get an official thumbs up from members of the voron design team. Historically the kits have been a bit hit or miss on quality meaning you were always gambling which parts you would need to replace to complete the build to a satisfactory level. I can definitely say that I had very little issue with the quality of the hardware delivered in this kit.

I’ll start with the two negative points. Firstly a few of my extrusions did not have sufficient depth in the tapped features which led to me stripping a bolt early on (thankfully) when it bottomed out in the threaded feature. Fortunately this is a very easy fix and i just ran a tap down all the holes extended the thread by a few mm to ensure I wouldn’t have the same issue anywhere else. LDO have acknowledged this was an issue on one or two of the early batches and it should be fixed in the new kits. This issue defintely falls into the annoying but easily surmounted category.

The second issue has affected all of the early kits (and maybe even the current ones?) and that is that the thumbwheel and spring combination for the mini afterburner aren’t compatable with each other. Either the threaded length on the thumbscrew is too short or the spring is too stiff/long. Thankfully again the fix is quick and simple either swap out the spring or just take some strong snips to it and trim some length off.

Now onto the good parts. Well everything else is spot on. The rails are a major part of most higher end printer builds cost and the V0.1 kit is no exception. Thankfully all 6 rails that arrived in my kit were smooth running and simply required the standard application of grease for lubrication. The extrusions were all straight, cut to very accurate lenths and had no twist. The bed appears to be cast aluminium (at least visually looks very similar to a known local sourced cast plate) and is very flat – although at this size you really would have to try quite hard to manufacture a taco bed! The bearings and belts for the corexy system all look good quality and I have had no issues during running since to indicate otherwise.

The real unique selling point though for this kit lies in the electronics parts. The heated bed comes wonderfully attached to the plate already saving the stinky high temp silicone experience. The wiring kit comes with a lovely set of pre crimped wires / loom which saves a LOT of time. My only comment here is that the wires are slightly too long but lets be honest it is better they are too long than too short, if it bothers you they have kindly included some extra connectors so you can shorten the wires.

I had a somewhat embarrassing experience with the panels in that I messed LDO complaining i’d received smokey panels instead of clear only to find that the protective sheet was still on one side of the panels – The protective sheet is NOT the same on both sides and one of them is quite challenging to remove. All of the panels appears smokey and scratched until i removed this and was left with lovely clear and undamaged panels. Just goes to show even quite experienced 3d printer builders (and even worse professional engineers) can make some incredibly stupid errors! As you can see the panels are in good condition and scratch free!

I would have liked to see some silent electronics cooling fans and the rear panel come with cutouts however this would be above and beyond the actual Voron 0.1 bom. I quite often get temperature warnings on the pi when doing longer prints as the area warms up and it would be nice to be able to have a fun turn on and keep things cool. I will be looking at modifying the panel to incorporate some shortly.

Lastly the kit comes with plenty of spares for the fittings and fixings although a few more square m3 nuts rather than a whole extra bag of standard m3 nuts wouldn’t go amiss! Below you can see everything that was left over after the build. As you can see there are plenty of spares for almost all the fasteners so you don’t need to panic too much when you drop a nut and it dissapears for the 10th time! There is also plenty of spare belt, VHB tape and cable sleeving.

Build experience

The build experience is a combination of the quality of the kit and the quality of design. The Voron design team make no claims to this being a particularly easy build, in fact they claim that it is the most challenging of any of the Voron printers. It does deliver on this promise because it’s size makes it a very fiddly build however for experienced 3d printer builders this should be part of the appeal. It is a challenge but not so hard it gets frustrating (At least not with this kit and a few little tricks up your sleeve!)

Firstly the mechanical build. The kit comes with some machined full length sliding nuts. Having built other printers with individual t nuts on the back of every bolt on the linear rail these things are epic. They speed up the rail assembly immensly. Don’t forget to use the rail guides because they also make life a lot easier. I had to do very little alignment of the rails after the initial assembly thank to all these factors. Next up is the bed frame build – this segment could be infuriating. You have to pre-place nuts and assemble the bolts in from 3 different directions essentially creating plenty of opportunity for the nuts to fall out of place. Thankfully there are a number of no drop nut mods (which i found out after designing my own – typical). I strongly suggest you read the build segment on this stage and use them! (link here). Next up is just a hint which is to lock all the pre-placed nuts in place with spare bolts (which LDO provide plenty of) to stop them from sliding around and potentially falling out!

As I already alluded to in the hardware section LDO provide pre-crimped and cut to length(ish) wiring looms for the toolhead and all the other parts. This speeds up the electrical segment of the build immensely. In addition to this they provide a wiring guide specific to their hardware which it is important you follow because the wiring lengths are designed around it.

Overall LDO have gone above and beyond to help make the build more enjoyable and all the difficult parts are down to the Voron 0.1 design rather than issues with the kit. If you are a novice at 3d printer builds/mods the V0.1 will be quite a challenging build. If you have patience and/or other assembly experience you should be able to get through it with some help from discord users though so don’t let it put you off unless you know you struggle with these things! (i.e. if you found building an ender 3 or a prusa a pain/challenge this is NOT for you!)

Again the print quality has 2 significant factors that affect it that have nothing to do with the quality of the supplied kit. Firsly and most significantly there is the design. The voron 0.1 design uses a corexy system and a direct drive toolhead. It has all of the key features required to be a machine capable of producing high quality prints at speed. The second feature is the skill of the person assembling the kit – in this aspect I would consider myself experienced. That being said I did not find it overly difficult to achieve a good quality build.

My experience with the V0.1 (nicknamed wasp due to it’s small size and colouring) has been very positive so far. The first things I printed on it was all the panel clips and handles. It churned them out on default settings beautifully – the only change I had to make was to tweak the flow ratio down just a touch but that is inline with my experience with that particular filament brand across my other printers anyway.

I have since printed the whole EVA carriage upgrade for the VCore3 to swap it over to a dragon hot end with the orbiter extruder and the parts look absolutely flawless. An added bonus was that I got very confident in the ability to cram parts onto the small build plate using it literally edge to edge without issues. I believe a lot of this is down to the fact it is a fully enclosed printer which definitely helps due to avoiding drafts on the bits around the edge.

Overall I have had very little issues with the printer over the last month of use and when I have it was associated with bed levelling and z offset calibration. Whilst the printer is super portable it does suffer a little in the calibration of some bits when you lug it around the country on your cars passenger seat!

Customer support

Towards the start of the build I found out my kit was missing 1 part. Fortunately LDO and the reseller i used in the UK (https://www.onetwo3d.co.uk/ – Not affiliated in any way, but to reward their good customer service I see no harm in sharing a link to their site) were quick to respond and I had a replacement part sent out within a few days.

LDO were also responsive throughout my build series which was really nice as they had no obligation to be involved and interested because I bought this kit directly from a supplier and the build series was in no way sponsored. It’s really good to get the feeling that the supplier is actively participating and involved in the community.

Final verdict

The LDO kit is a near-perfect printer build kit and with good communication and promised fixes I see this kit being infallible in its latest configurations. The kit comes at a reasonable premium vs other suppliers but for many the peace of mind that you won’t need to replace any parts will be worth that markup. I spent some time prior to ordering this kit pricing up a self sourced version and it came in at more expensive than the LDO kit for similar quality parts therefore I’d say it is good value for money.

If you are interested in building a V0.1 then the LDO kit gets a big thumbs up from me.

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