Stratasys uPrint - Retrofit finally Complete!



  • Only took a year, I have to say this was much harder then building a printer from scratch.

    My config files are located here if anyone else wishes to do the same. Now that I've done all the hard work It won't be too hard to convert these machines.
    https://github.com/drphil3d/stratasys/blob/master/README.md

    CAD Files for the extruder adapter mount https://a360.co/2ZEHYXw
    Panel Due mounting bracket https://a360.co/31LCPhZ
    Blank LCD bracket https://a360.co/31Mda8Y
    4mm to 6mm PTFE Adapter https://a360.co/2IurMCe

    Video of operation https://photos.app.goo.gl/3UqF72nFuzfWhSet6

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    Wiring
    0_1561068614869_410737b1-9aef-4ded-8d7c-789941fd9d2e-image.png

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    0_1561068672392_911fa14b-3432-4741-852f-4e432cc097ee-image.png



  • That looks amazing! I'm currently in the finishing stages of converting an old 3D Systems Cubex. I'm optimizing it for printing with ABS, with a heated chamber and everything!

    Are you printing PLA? What print speeds are you getting?

    It looks great, and a full write-up would be absolutely awesome!



  • At the moment I'm testing with PLA but the goal is to print Nylon and PC. I'm able to print at about 130mm/s with 275mm/s travels



  • Brilliant. Your work to figure out the steps/mm is going to save me a heap of time on my project.

    I'm doing a similar conversion to a pair of uPrint SE's but I will be retaining the Power Distribution Board and the OEM extruder setup.

    The goal is reducing operating costs while retaining the ability to print ABS and some sort of support filament (that isn't proprietary $300/kg).

    I have yet to figure out if the OEM dual hotend can be run at significantly different temperatures.

    Regards,
    Pete



  • too be honest I spent about a year on this conversion and I can say it's easier to build a new printer from scratch.

    There's really nothing from the power distribution board of any use. all you need is the 24v power supply. The only difference is the uPrint SE has a slightly larger build volume and can handle 4 spools.



  • @JadonM said in Stratasys uPrint - Retrofit finally Complete!:

    That looks amazing! I'm currently in the finishing stages of converting an old 3D Systems Cubex. I'm optimizing it for printing with ABS, with a heated chamber and everything!

    Are you printing PLA? What print speeds are you getting?

    It looks great, and a full write-up would be absolutely awesome!

    Is the cubex at all similar to the FDM 8000 which I have?



  • @Rory166 Nope. The Cubex is 3D Systems' early desktop dual extruder 3D printer.

    https://www.amazon.com/The-CubeX™-Duo-3D-Printer/dp/B00D45ZNKA



  • Glad to have come across your project!

    I was actually working on something very similar to you about a year ago. I originally was going to do what you have done, rip out all the Stratasys electronics and then hardwire the motors directly to the Duet. It was my plan to re-use all uPrint components and not replace the print head. Then I discovered that the main board of the electronics contained the 120 VDC(!) power supply that runs the hot end as well as the various DC:DC relays needed to make things work.

    I took a step back and decided that it would probably be far more effective to design an adapter that takes the signals from the Duet and converts them into commands that the Stratasys board can understand. I probed every connection to find out exact what signals were needed at each point. (Somewhere I still have them all written down I'm sure.)

    I ended up creating this custom adapter board here:

    IMG_20181031_124329.jpg

    IMG_20181102_150633.jpg

    As you can see it replaces the Stratasys interpretation board that converts signals from the embedded PC (now the Duet) into signals the controller can understand. Unfortunately I ran into snags with the Duet. It wasn't as easy as I had assumed it would be to assign pins to do certain things. In order to make it work, I needed to make actual changes to the firmware on the Duet itself.

    While that was starting to look fruitful, I quickly ran out of time and energy to put to use on finishing the setup.

    Since then, I have collected 10(!) uPrint 3D Printers with the intention of converting each of them eventually.

    I am not sure if you have discarded all of the original Stratasys stuff, but if you have not and are interested in working on something that could be more plug and play... please let me know. Perhaps if you come across a second uPrint, it will be much easier without as much modification.

    I see the Duet 3 is probably a much better candidate than the Duet 2 for this kind of thing as it has a bit more flexibility as far as what you can use it for.



  • @AJ-Quick said in Stratasys uPrint - Retrofit finally Complete!:

    I see the Duet 3 is probably a much better candidate than the Duet 2 for this kind of thing as it has a bit more flexibility as far as what you can use it for.

    Duet2 with RepRapFirmware v3 should actually be as* flexible as the Duet3 when it comes to pin assignments, but still not quite ready for prime time imo.

    *) or 95% at least.



  • @bearer said in Stratasys uPrint - Retrofit finally Complete!:

    @AJ-Quick said in Stratasys uPrint - Retrofit finally Complete!:

    I see the Duet 3 is probably a much better candidate than the Duet 2 for this kind of thing as it has a bit more flexibility as far as what you can use it for.

    Duet2 with RepRapFirmware v3 should actually be as* flexible as the Duet3 when it comes to pin assignments, but still not quite ready for prime time imo.

    *) or 95% at least.

    Thank you for that information! With RepRap firmware, would I still retain the full web browser and PanelDue capability?

    I will have to look into this a bit more!



  • @AJ-Quick said in Stratasys uPrint - Retrofit finally Complete!:

    @bearer said in Stratasys uPrint - Retrofit finally Complete!:

    @AJ-Quick said in Stratasys uPrint - Retrofit finally Complete!:

    I see the Duet 3 is probably a much better candidate than the Duet 2 for this kind of thing as it has a bit more flexibility as far as what you can use it for.

    Duet2 with RepRapFirmware v3 should actually be as* flexible as the Duet3 when it comes to pin assignments, but still not quite ready for prime time imo.

    *) or 95% at least.

    Thank you for that information! With RepRap firmware, would I still retain the full web browser and PanelDue capability?

    I will have to look into this a bit more!

    RepRapFirmware is the default firmware provided by Duet3D, the change is version 2 to version 3, so the web browser and duet web control is unchanged. There is also as far as I know full support for the PanelDue (however if used with Duet3 and a single board computer like the Raspberry Pi there are some limitations on the PanelDue support - which shouldn't be an issue for you)



  • @bearer Oh thank you! It took me a while to look at the code to understand. RepRapFirmware V3+ can be used on the Duet2 with the new pin assignment capabilities and I don't need a Duet3? If so, that would actually help with so many of the problems I was having!

    Perhaps its time to order some new PCBs and get working on the updated version of my adapter board. Unfortunately on my previous version I had used some pins that were outputs only where I needed inputs or vice-versa.



  • @AJ-Quick said in Stratasys uPrint - Retrofit finally Complete!:

    RepRapFirmware V3+ can be used on the Duet2 with the new pin assignment capabilities and I don't need a Duet3? If so, that would actually help with so many of the problems I was having!

    indeed! there are still some default pin names for the duet2 but at least you can change the functions as needed. (for the duet3 its all generic names)



  • @JadonM Late to the party here...

    Those Cubex machines were selling cheap on ebay a couple years ago when 3DS decided to get out of the consumer printer market. I bought a Duo new-in-box for $260 including shipping.

    There's a long thread on Cubex conversions here:
    Cubex conversion



  • @mrehorstdmd Thanks for the link!

    Here's the story behind my Cubex:
    I bought it slightly used from an industrial surplus seller in Cleveland for about $70. I then brought it home and ripped the proprietary boards out. (Obsolete of course!) Being an eBay seller, I listed the boards on eBay and made about $50 of profit from them! 😄 You can't beat that price for a printer!


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