Ah Geeetech, the company whose products I will always fondly remember as the reminder to stick to building sentences. My short lived career as a maker began and ended with my purchase and building of this very product out of my college apartment, an endeavor that, while tremendously rewarding and educational, proved in myself a certain lack of patience that was apparent from the various replacement parts I had to commission my 3D printing friend to print in order to complete the kit.
Regardless, for those with the patience to move carefully and build precisely in hands-on projects, putting together the Geeetech Prusa Mendel I3 kit should prove an excellent experience. Reprap, the movement that birthed Makerbot and Ultimaker among others, bears credit for the inception of this build. While officially inactive as a company making and producing kits, the spirit of Reprap is still alive in its forums, where purchasers of kits such as these gather and engage in rigorously detailed technobabble, swapping cautionary tales of an over tightened nut here and a poorly threaded rod there.
For those interested in taking the leap and purchasing one of Geeetech's fairly inexpensive i3 kits, read up on these forums. They give an excellent idea of the degree of technical rigor 3D printing still demands, even as a hobby. It can have you soldering, programming, and using various means to test and adjust construction and parts. It also requires a keen analytical skill, an ability to look at a malfunctioning machine and diagnose the cause. All of these skills can be difficult, but none are impossible; as I'm living proof of, even the least natural comer to the craft can hack their way through it, given some determination, a willingness to learn, and time. I recommend finding all three of those traits with an extra serving of patience if your plan is to persist in 3D printing -- good luck, and have fun.
The instructions are some confusing but it's easy to assemble. One problem: all the parts in blue were printed in PLA so if you try to print with ABS the hotend support bends!
It was a lot of fun to build. If you can follow directions you can put this together. The electronics are for the most part plug-and-play. Good product and good service!
This printer I ordered is now assembled and working fine. Would definitely recommend this to anyone who likes DIY builds and good at basic troubleshooting.