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 (http://www.reprap.me/ir-probe-for-duetwifi.html). 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: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2428995. 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: