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Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone

Posted by GLOBAL GT LTD 
Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
June 02, 2012 01:51PM
Well ive spent quiet a few hours googeling and not found a starting point never mind an answer!
Iva got a Stratasys 8000 fdm machine aquired some years ago from a business closure auction, and have used it intermittentley over the past 5 years. But now it has stopped working, weve lost communications with it from our PC, tried different cables and decided it must be the onboard controller, the machine still works from the keypad and moves by manual controls, the display comes up with "memory error" but the manual says this is that the machine has lost one or more of its preset values which can be set via the keypad.
So i have decided to buy a Arduino Mega, a Ramps 1.4 and the matching 5 small stepper drivers as a all in one (well 7) ready built unit and want to use that to control the Stratasys, and thats were i get to, now ive built my own cnc machines sucessfully so i have a good basic knowledge and the ability to figure it out eventually too but im getting older and tired!!!
Has anyone done a retro fit or can you point me in the direction of someone who has.... Please!
Thanks in advance
Alex
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
June 02, 2012 03:50PM
Does it have an actual stepper for the extruder, or is it an encoded DC motor?


www.Fablicator.com
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
June 02, 2012 04:35PM
without going up to the workshop and removing the head i dont know for sure but...
from looking at the control boards i assume its all stepper's
the original installation seems to have a power unit, a computer unit and a driver board,
ive found that someone bought a "automove 201" here "http://3d4u.org/MyFDM/?p=1582#comments" and that seems to be an option to run the Stratasys from the conversation in that post, a quick search shows this is a stepper driving unit

I'm pretty sure if i junk the whole control system and use the motors, endstops, headunit etc that i should be able to configure the Arduino and Ramps in its place (basically using the Stratasys unit as a home built reprap), the machines tempreture for head and for the enclosed oven bed still work now so i might have to keep all the original unit and just replace the driver section, i have another 8000 as a spare parts unit (was not working when we got it) so have tried the obviouse swapping of seperate items and chips and during all this the head units and main oven temp were manually controllable therfore my guess is that either the I/O board or the driver board has failed, the software has a check comms option this says "connected" in green then when you ask it to upload the "buttons" file (a reset option) it shows a timer and then after 1min 30 ish it says "communication failed"
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
June 02, 2012 04:38PM
another bit of information, it seems that Stratasys used either the "nova 600" or the "littleboard P5v"

reading up on these im pretty sure they are just the same as the Arduino Mega unit
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
June 02, 2012 04:45PM
her is a link to the automove controller, "http://www-car.asymtek.com/support/manuals/70_0045_20_C.pdf"

reading it the operational guide is identical to the 8000fdm even down to the pause, home and teach butttons and there operation.
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
June 02, 2012 05:18PM
Assuming everything is stepper driven, a brain transplant will be straight forward. Depending on the stepper size, you may run into power issues. RAMPS likes NEMA 17 motors. Don't know about you heated bed, but you need to make sure you don't burn out the 12VDC trace on the RAMPS. I've seen this a couple of times on 1.3 units.
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
June 02, 2012 08:48PM
more information coming to light!
seems that stratasys just used the automove 201 controller and rebadged it,
some good info and links here "http://haveblue.org/?p=514"
from the info on this link it would make me think that the controller is still working as the keypad control does make everything manually work. All axis move as they should, all tempretures can be set, and the filiment can be manually spooled both the build and the support materials.
From that i believe the motion controller is working
So as a recap and as a source for anyone else who tries this.
There is 3 boxes inside, one is just a power source, another is a re badged automove 201 controller and the final part is the Stratasys input board.
The Stratasys board i assume takes the information generated by the Stratasys program (insight 33 on my machine) and converts it into basic pwm signals to drive the automove controller it has 2 roms on it labelled 9.04 which is the same number that appears on the small lcd panel.
So it appears all i need to do is swap out the brain, I reckon on using the automove unit again so from my Ardunio Mega/ramps 1.4/5 stepper drive package possibly only the ardunio will be required, that said i wonder... as the lcd panel displays the firmware then it must be reading that from these roms, which would mean the issue is only in the pc communicating to the Stratasys board. Ok so before i go further i had better test the output from the pc and there is also a opto isolating board where this lead connects to the Stratasys interface. I did try another pc and another cable in my processing but i did not check the opto board, nor did i swap it out when changing pieces from my spare 8000.

we shall see what tomorrow brings and I'll update this, i shall use this as a blogg so if i suceed and anyone else finds themselves in the same predicament they might find this helpfull.
Hi, Did you ever find a solution to your problem and were you able to retrofit this machine. I'm interested because I was thinking of purchasing one of these machines but understand that Stratasys no long offer support or parts for this machine. I was told heads were still available from Stratasys but have not verified and was told by Stratasys directly that no parts were available. Any info you could give me would be appreciated.
Recently I became the owner of an FDM8000 with no head. The machine would not turn on or move, so it looks like they are sensing if the head is there or not. On thier control board the is a two wire output labled hard-stop. If you cross these two wires, the machine comes to life without thier controller. That is, you can use the automove to control the machine (I was able to do that). Infact, it looks like they use the automove for the whole interface and thier consome controller only drives the extruder. So replacing that with an arduino would be a piece of cake. Have you tried to run the machine with the automove to make sure that is still operational?

Also I was wondering if you can provide me with a pinout of the head. I am planning on rebuilding the head with a makerbot type head.

Thanks, Lior.
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
October 21, 2012 05:57AM
For the hardware you have 4 areas to deal with.

1- the 3 axis motion of the machine to hook up(x,y and Z)

In the stratasys machines they use 8 wire stepper motors, so you need to wire up the motors so they are 4 wires to use them with pololu or stepstick (4 wire stepper drivers)

2- the head uses 2 brushless motors so you need to find brushless motor drives to run those.
allegro has something to do that like Allegro A4941

or replace the brushless motors with small stepper motors.

3- The heaters in the head are 1/4" diameter 48V or 120Vdc heaters so you could replace those with 12V heaters.

4-connect the limit switches for x,y and Z

For software you need to fix the firmware to use brushless motors.
I have a couple of these machines, along with several boxes of parts from machines we stripped. I need a set of the watlow temp controllers if anyone has some. Will buy or trade. Please let me know if you can help.
I have an FDM 2000. Does anyone have software for sale or know where I can get software? Looking for Stratasys Quickslice or Insight. Any help would be very apprecated!

Thanks!
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
April 03, 2013 05:51PM
I have both but would need to rummage around to find them.


Random Precision
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
July 06, 2013 11:19PM
I can help out. email me arthur_mosier atyah oo
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
July 06, 2013 11:25PM
When InSight or QuickSlice sends a job to a Stratasys FDM, what format is the file? Is it hexadecimal? G-Code? M-Code/

I want to know because I am also looking to replace my failed Stratasys FDM controller board with an Arduino and wondered if I can keep using InSight or QuickSilce to slice and send job.
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
July 07, 2013 10:24AM
You cannot keep using InSight until someone will develope a converter from stratasys Pcode to reprap Gcode. I think better way is to buy old stratasys controller.
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
July 08, 2013 01:21PM
Someone actually gutted the electronics of a Dimension machine and replaced them with an open source system, so a full retrofit can be done (though they didn't keep the heated chamber):
[www.ebay.com]

The file that gets sent to an FDM series machine is Asymtek's ACL - it's not G-code, but operates in much the same way, with a lot of move commands. Here's an example: [haveblue.org]


[haveblue.org]
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
July 08, 2013 07:29PM
Wow Have Blue, that looks like a very good printer, look how detailed those prints look! One would be a total idiot not to buy that printer, except the fact that it would have to be local pick-up and takes about half of the space of a living-room winking smiley
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
July 09, 2013 02:39AM
Yes of cause it can be done. But the above is very stupid convertion. No need to change internals of the printer. Just change arduino firmware to connect ALL the electrics.
Stepsticks for nema23??
Large pics of printed parts with dual head?
Re: symtek 201
July 10, 2013 11:44PM
@HaveBlue: On another webpage on the Stratasys FDM-8000, you have a couple of dead links to the Asymtek Automove 201 operations and repair manuals. Is it possible for you to renew the links or provide another avenue to share the manuals, like using DropBox or something? Thanks.
I have an FDM-3000 which ran great untill I took the head out, (for the umpteenth time), and it suddenly stopped initializing. I am sending the board out for board level diagnostics and hopefully a repair. If that craps outs, I will be gutting the Stratasys controller and the Asymtek controller then run a RAMPS 1.4 controller straight to the steppers...replacing them if I need to. Also will refit the head with a couple of steppers to replace the two Micro Mo gearmotors. I'd hate to toss the whole thing in the landfill just because some sissy Stratasys controller blew a $0.03 component.
Re: symtek 201
July 13, 2013 01:59PM
Links have been fixed, thanks! I actually may have a spare controller board - let me know if yours winds up being unrepairable.


[haveblue.org]
Re: symtek 201
July 25, 2013 06:57PM
Hi, amosier, did you fix your FDM3000 machine? I also have one FDM3000, somehow the head is leaking material, we didn't notice, then I took out the head and cleaned the material. But after I put it back, the Model Temperature panel shows "Err4", do you have similar problem before?
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
March 05, 2014 10:37AM
Hi,
Does anyone have the installer for insight to run an FDM 3000. I have a fully functional machine however the Hard Disk on the computer failed and Stratasys wont give me the software.
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
November 20, 2017 05:39PM
Quote
tmullins
Hi,
Does anyone have the installer for insight to run an FDM 3000. I have a fully functional machine however the Hard Disk on the computer failed and Stratasys wont give me the software.

Lot of people asking for Insight Software ..
Insight 6.0 Build 3259 - [mega.nz]

Ans now .. a doc that nobody has and you canĀ“t find anywhere .. only if Stratasys send to you smiling smiley
FDM 2000-3000 User Guide - [mega.nz]

I bought a FDM 3000 .. lot of issues ..
After long hours of investigation the only thing I need to finish is Z axis calibration .. and that is it (I hope)
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
November 24, 2017 07:09PM
Ops ...
Was changing some backup folders and those links are no longer working ...
You can check those files on new location ...

Insight 6.0 Build 3259 [mega.nz]
FDM 2000-3000 User Guide [mega.nz]

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/24/2017 07:10PM by luizgpf.
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
December 10, 2019 07:47AM
I have just bought the GT Gobal machines. The Ramps and arduino boards were found unused inside. It seems unlikely to me that the postage stamp sized stepper drivers will drive large motors so I am intending to get some 40v 4A drivers from Bangood.
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
December 10, 2019 07:52AM
Quote
Rory166
I have just bought the GT Gobal machines. The Ramps and arduino boards were found unused inside. It seems unlikely to me that the postage stamp sized stepper drivers will drive large motors so I am intending to get some 40v 4A drivers from Bangood.

Do you mean that you bought the machine from the person who started this topic?


http://www.marinusdebeer.nl/
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
December 10, 2019 07:56AM
Do your self a favor, do not buy tb6600's from banggood (or anywhere else)

They are slow jumk... very problematic for reprap
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
December 10, 2019 09:15AM
You can probably buy a Duet board for however much a few external drivers will cost. The Duet 2 boards can drive motors up to 2.4A. The Duet 3 boards can go over 3A. You get a lot more control capability with the Duet, too, and you won't have to recompile the firmware for every configuration change, either. That seems like a small benefit now, but in 2 or 3 years, when the Arduino IDE can no longer compile your arduino firmware and you have to start looking for obsolete IDE, drivers, and plugins (and then get it all working) just so you can make a simple config change, you'll understand the benefit of text file configuration. Duet config is all gcode, and most of it can be changed on the fly, which makes tuning up the machine a lot easier. You run a print, and tweak whatever behavior you want to improve while it is printing so you see the result of your tweak immediately. Once you have determined the new settings, you put them into the config file and reboot the board. Done.


Son of MegaMax 3D printer: [www.instructables.com]
Ultra MegaMax Dominator 3D printer: [drmrehorst.blogspot.com]
Re: Stratasys fdm 8000 retrofitting Arduino anyone
December 11, 2019 05:54AM
Well not directly but they are clearly the same ones.

Thanks for the advice ,keep it coming. Are there and drivers which are ok? Do I need to design my own? The Duet sounds promising I do have one I can use. I still doubt it can drive the motors directly. 40v 4A seemed about right to me. Will try to check what is written on the motors.

The 6600 is rated at 20kHz, is that slow?

I have looked at the Duet 3 and I want one. That is one of the benefits of posting on here, better ideas from those in the know. The duet 3 can have a single board computer add on to do the configuration rather than write your own firmware. This sounds like a very good idea for a custom machine.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 12/11/2019 06:44AM by Rory166.
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