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existing 3d printer retrofit

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Posted · existing 3d printer retrofit

Looking for some advice from folks familiar with the Ultimaker original. I am in the US.

I have an existing Stratasys genysis XS 3d printer which I have had for years. The software is really old, only runs on windows NT, and they quit selling some of the wafers it uses.

I had a board finally die recently so I am thinking of retrofitting it and liked the looks of the Ultimaker as far as speed and precision.

The current machine is precise and well designed, Thompson linear rails, heated platen(build platform) and good sized stepper motors. When it was working was very nice.

I am thinking of replacing the electronics and extruder with Ultimaker parts.

Does the software used in the Ultimaker only work with their build envelope size or is it adjustable. Does the hardware only work with specific stepper motors?

Here is what I am thinking I would need to buy, please let me know if anyone thinks I am missing something.

Bowden tube

Full assembled electronics(Ardino mega and 4 A4988 controllers)

Hot end upgrade V2

Extruder Drive upgrade

Any thoughts would be appreciated. Even if you think it isn't a great idea.




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Posted · existing 3d printer retrofit

The firmware (Marlin) and slicing software (Cura) are both open source, and support a wide range of technologies and configurations. You'd need to configure the bed size, direction and location of homing sensors/end-stops, and the number of steps-per-mm for all axes.

I'm not familiar with the specifics of the Stratasys model that you want to convert... but assuming the motors can be run from the standard stepper drivers (or can be replaced with standard steppers), then it shouldn't be too hard to configure the firmware to drive it, I wouldn't think.

The extruder upgrade wouldn't necessarily give you everything you need - it assumes you already have the motor, gears, etc - the upgrade mostly provides a new pressure plate arrangement; I don't know what you might already have by why of extruder drive components - you don't have to use UM's version; there are other designs on thingiverse (for instance) that you might consider instead. Mostly, you just need a way to grab 3mm filament and push it into the Bowden tube under stepper motor control.


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Posted · existing 3d printer retrofit

Great that's just the kind of info I was looking for! It will be so refreshing to not be tied to proprietary hardware.

Yeah they are just regular steppers, I think they are like vexta or some brand like that nema 17 or 24 size if I remember.

Good to know about the extruder. Maybe I will just check around thingiverse for one to make. There is an extruder on the old one but it was made for small wafers, not spool. But it is stepper driven so maybe I can rob some parts for a new one.

Thanks for the info.


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