Over the last few years I have gotten the chance to test out and review dozens of beginner and hobby level 3D printers. Some have impressed me while others have left quite a bit to be desired. It is very rare for me to have a printer that completely exceeded all of my expectations. Well this is one of those instintances and I am thrilled to be able to share my experience with the Artillery Sidewinder X1 3D Printer.
Before I get into what I have experienced let’s get a brief rundown of the machine. This is a $400 nearly assembled 3D printer that certainly gets some of its inspiration from the Creality line of printers. It has a build volume of 300mm x 300mm x 400mm, is a 24V direct drive machine using a clone Titan Extruder with a Clone PTFE lined Volcano style hotend. The bed is AC heated, insolated, and uses a glass black diamond style surface. It is rocking an MKS GEN L controller with drivers that allow it to run very quiet. Filament runout, power loss recovery, touch screen, dual lead screw Z axis, Micro SD and USB input, massive 20 x 60 extrusions for X and Y axis. RGB status LED, inductive endstops and more! The list just goes on.
What completely boggles me is that this machine sort of came up out of nowhere. While there are many Chinese companies that have been around for many years that are just cloning Creality machines, Artillery 3D came out of nowhere with a machine that has so many upgrades and things I would normally modify a machine to have it is unreal. I started seeing this printer pop up in my Twitter feed and was blown away by the pictures of prints that I saw many other community members getting off of this stock machine. It did not take long for me to decide I really need to see what all the hype is about.
I reached out to Artillery a few times before getting a response and having them agree to send me one of these printers. When it showed up, I was in the process of moving and had told myself no more building of printers until I was settled into my new place. Yah right! I ripped open the box when I got home from work, plugged in the ribbon cables and few other cables, leveled the machine and was ready to rock.
I printed a 20 x 20mm calibration cube that turned out perfect before loading up a 24 hour print. I used a Cura profile that I had put together for the CR-10S PRO and was off. This machine handled PLA like a champ and every print I threw at it came off the bed looking amazing. In total, I printed 5 large PLA prints that added up to around 100 hours of print time. The bed is made of the same sort of Ultrabase glass material that is on the JG Aurora A5 as well as the Anycubic I3 Mega. It is arguably one of my favorite build surfaces to date and I have tried just about all of them.
When finished with PLA, I tried a large PET-G print which also looks fantastic. I really wanted to print out some flexible materials like TPU, but unfortunately the only spool I have currently is about 3 years old and covered in dust. I will be revisiting flexible printing on this machine as I have seen some crazy flexible prints come off of this machine. With the Direct Drive Titan style extruder, this really does not surprise me at all.
As of right now, if you are looking for a step up from an Ender 3 or just need a build volume that is bigger, I cannot recommend this machine enough. I had seen a few users that had reported issues on a printed part on the XCarriage. As of mine, they are now injection molded which is awesome. The only gripe I can think of is the spool holder. It is in two parts and you need to unscrew two tnuts on the back of the machine to move them around for different spool sizes. This is a pain and I highly recommend printing out a different spool holder.
I love my Artillery Sidewinder X1 and cannot wait to do a ton of more printing on this machine.