Is it possible to build a hotend, using separate parts, sourced on eBay, from China, and still achieve a high quality print?
In my opinion, the E3D V6 hotend is rather expensive, at $/£70, especially to those building to a tight budget. Now, obviously/presumably, there is some quite rigorous QA and testing of the build, and they have to pay for their research costs and initial machining set ups and this is reflected in the high cost. Also, the expression, you get what you pay for, springs to mind.
However, I wondered if I sourced the individual parts from China, for a dollar apiece, that is to say the:
- Throat (with Teflon lining)
- Heating block
- Pneumatic connector (PC4-05/PC4-M06)
could I too, end up with a hotend, that performs as well as, or even out performs, an E3D hotend, or am I living in cloud cuckoo land?
After all, let's not forget that most, if not, all of the parts used in a E3D hotend probably come from China anyway, these days, as most production facilites have moved from the US/EU to the cheaper manufacturing bases and machining shops, in SE Asia.
I have read so many times that people were experiencing extrusion problems, shoddy prints, etc, from their cheap printer, until they finally shelled out the cash and upgraded to a genuine E3D hotend. After that the prints were much improved. I have read this countless times, in blogs, threads, etc., so I presume that it is not possible.
I realise that if the parts are not finished correctly, and end up with burring on the inside of the throat, nozzle, etc., then the filament will not extrude correctly. See tbm0115's answer to How long is an extruder's/nozzle's life? However, assuming that the parts that I receive are machined, and finished, correctly then there should not be a problem, right?
Has anyone actually done this? Is tinkering with hotends a done thing? Does anyone have any good pointers and/or tips?
NOTE: This question is not really after opinionated answers, in order to stay within SE rules - although opinions are always welcome - but I just want to know if anyone has first hand (positive or negative) experience of this.