Makerbot Replicator 2X Duetwifi Edition

  • My Makerbot Replicators 2x has served me well for many many years. Finally something broke down and it started to reset itself mid print. As replacing all the cables in the machine did not fix the problem I suspected a mainboard or PSU problem. Long story short: it was time for an upgrade.

    The new Replicator 2X now runs a Duetwifi board with reprap firmware, utilizes a IR sensor to measure the bed height and provide mesh bed leveling and displays all the data on a 5'' color touch screen mounted at the same place the old Makerbot display was positioned.

    What did I use for the conversion?

    Extruder heaters, fans, extruder thermostor, heated bed and bed thermistor connection was straight forward
    Steppers connection was straight forward as well. I simply connected the wires to the board in the same order as you see them on the stepper motor - minus the gap between the pins)
    Endstop connection was done by combining the center 2 pins (these are the ground pins) from the Makerbot endstops to the gnd pin on the Duetwifi 3pin connector. signal and VCC according to the markings on the endstop and duetwifi mainboard
    Zaxis homing was installed with both the makerbot endstop and the IR probe for duetwifi by DC42 ( As I have some issues with my glass bed and printing ABS as it requires ABS juice which throws the sensor readings off, I currently use the fixed endstop for my prints and will switch back to the IR sensor once my Pei sheet arrives.

    I mounted the board with stand-off to the bottom of the printer in-between the stock makerbot standoffs.4 holes are required in the bottom of the printer for that (M3). I also mounted the PSU beside it at the bottom to get a nice compact installation. There is enough space between PSU and bottom of the printer to allow the cooling fan to ventilate the PSU

    Makerbot LEDs are hooked up to a spare fan connector on the board (plus minus leads only) for it to shine red while in operation. As duet wifi does not have the capacity to control the colors of the RGB LED's I will replace them with white ones going forward.

    Last I removed the old Display and mounted the PanelDue.
    For this I made an enclosure (modification of the enclosure made by DC42) - you can find it here: It has a few slots to allow storage of SD cards (I still need to purchase the 10pin ribbon cable to actually use the PanelDue SD card slot - would be nice if the panel would come with them btw).

    Finally I configured and tuned the printer with the reprap configurator and by hand with the editor.

    Now I'm enjoying my new, wifi connected, Replicator 🙂

    Update: I have uploaded the IR Sensor mount as well as the config files to thingiverse. The full "Replicator 2X Duet Wifi upgrade series" can be found here:

  • Nice build, congrats!!

  • Thanks 🙂

  • administrators

    Very cool!

    If you wanted to keep the RGB led outputs then you could use some of the heater pins on the expansion header and small external MOSFETs to switch each colour.

  • Thanks.
    I'm a bit repelled by the price of the expansion board to just drive the LED's 🙂
    Although it would be a nice added bling (maybe the developers could think about a future LED driver/expansion board?) for the printer.

    I will probably stick to the plain white or fix an arduino into the circuit to control the colors (without the gcode integration).

  • administrators

    Yes I would not buy the Duex2 just to drive LEDs ( although of course if you did I would not complain!)

    You can actually use small through hole MOSFETs on a breadboard with a few jumper leads to the requisite pins. It's a bit of work (and looks a bit ghetto) but would achieve the aim.

  • @T3P3Tony:

    Yes I would not buy the Duex2 just to drive LEDs ( although of course if you did I would not complain!)

    You can actually use small through hole MOSFETs on a breadboard with a few jumper leads to the requisite pins. It's a bit of work (and looks a bit ghetto) but would achieve the aim.

    He could also design a working virtual prototype on a virtual bread board and then have a real working PCB addon board shipped to him.

    Check this out…. the service is free through autodesk you are only charged when ordering the PCB

  • Good 🙂 Now I have another project 🙂 In the past I used OSH Park for my PCB creation…....maybe I will cook something up for the BLING 🙂

  • administrators

    Even better!

  • Updated the first post. The IR Sensor mount as well as the config files are now available on Thingiverse for download.
    Print away 🙂

  • Hey guys,

    inspired by this, I will start my already heavily modded Rep2x/ MightyBoard RevG to DuetWifi conversion today…
    I will first do some config and cableworks. As this is a private project, there will be some delays here and there 🙂 😉

    Like @IdefixRC I am using the parts from carl raffle(carriages, etc.), bottleworks arms/bed and used a custom compiled sailfish version and a filament tracking system - so this setup looks very close to mine. I will also switch to the E3D Aero, the carriage is based on the alumium single carriage from raffle. I am using good LM8SUU bearings.

  • Hey,

    I finished the beta cable work and got everything running smoove… I could get it managed relatively easy to reactivate the tunell filament monitor. I did grab the +5V/GND from the expansion connector (50pin) while using the E1 endstop signal pin. The tunell got his own logic and a rotary encoder, the monitor is theoretically expensible itself. The E3D Aero is giving real nice results with it's light slimline stepper, there are no more issues related to ghosting. I will have to fix positioning, it's planned that the active cooling will act as kind of a counterbalance. Actually there's to much weight on the right side. I did create all config files by hand in a step by step procedere.

    Next steps

    • Active cooling

    • IR Probe installation

    • Reactivate the led's

    • Topmount for 5" display

    • Mount a new frontpanel

    • Aluminium sidepanels


  • @IdefixRC
    Be carefull with that type of PSU (saw the picture) when you want the full power. They have issues with burning inrush current limiting NTC's….
    I saw several cases... and I have a 12V one laying around now. Doesn't look that great when you open it...

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