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Makerbot 5th generation, complete rework

Posted by L4nce0 
Makerbot 5th generation, complete rework
December 06, 2015 03:51AM
Hi everyone. So I got this makerbot 5th gen off this guy in one of the 3d printing groups I'm in. He told me the thing doesn't work... Turns out it works beuti.. it works like a makerbot. I knew before I bought it I would need to strip out everything stratasys and use it as a frame. Don't worry I only paid 500 for it. One thing they did right was the linear motion.. if you can ignore the insane noise it makes.

So far have done 3 unjams, and done a pretty good job of snapping all of the brittle clips on these dump extruders. I'm just so used to my mendelmax, flashforge, prusa.. You know, as in not sucking. Not really a PLA guy, shocking a 3k printer can not have a heat bed.

Don't care about the low rez camera. Hate the interface with a passion. I own literally 50 hot beds. (message me if you want to buy one or 5.. got them as overstock from a big 3d printing company). That leaves me with a frame, linear motion and wire. Tossing out the extruders, the electronics, controls and LCD. Also told that there is a defect and the temps will start acting screwy so need to replace the boards anyways.

I want to take out the corrupted stratasys core, and be done with all these really shi*** easily breakable parts. I love ramps, I own a duet, I have 3 e3d hot ends lying around waiting for a different project and access to many 3d printers, and laser cutters.

What I'm not finding is guide of trail blazers. I refuse to believe that no one has cleansed a makerbot gen 5. Probably some foul play from the stratasys marketing team as mostly makerbot sites pop up. Thus the creation of this thread. I am able to figure it out myself but I am hoping to avoid any expensive pitfalls. IE I believe its a 24v system, but I don't know for sure. That would be an expensive mistake.. I have a duet board that could go into that guy, as it handles either 24 or 12.. Some random thread on the internet made mention of using flashforge parts?

What I really need is STLs for mounts, IE the extruders and endstop holders. I don't exactly own CAD software.

If no one has done this conversion I will have to post my build log.. Probably here. In some way that the stratasys lawyers don't find me and sue me though. I could see them doing that..
Re: Makerbot 5th generation, complete rework
December 06, 2015 09:02AM
I have a Replicator at the Makerspace whose controller has died twice. I'll be replacing the controller with Arduino/RAMPS boards one of these days. It's a stupid machine with a plywood frame (already warping) but it produced decent prints when it worked. I don't think we were ever able to run both extruders- they were there as a form of redundancy- it seems that when one wouldn't work the other would. They've been modified 3 or 4 times to make them more reliable, but it diodn't seem to help much.

We also have a CubePro Trio that uses some stupid chipped filament cartridges. I'm looking into ripping out the electronics in that one, too, and replacing it with a 32 bit controller. Mechanically, it a great machine. They just screwed it up with the dumb proprietary filament packaging.

The machine you have uses the infamous "smart" extruder(s), doesn't it? Are you planning on replacing that (those)?

I would go with 24V if your new controller board will handle it because it will drive the steppers better. The voltage rating of the steppers doesn't matter- if they worked at 12V they'll work even better at 24V. There may be some optical endstops that are expecting 12V, and the extruder heater may be a 12V device- so make sure you check everything before powering up with 24V.

You can download some very good, free CAD software- I like and use DesignSpark Mechanical. It's a direct-edit package that's a lot easier to learn and use than parametric packages like Solidworks, yet quite powerful and easily up to the task of redesigning the parts you'll need for that machine. There are some other good freebies out there, but I would avoid SketchUp- it isn't very good for 3D printing.

I wouldn't let fear of a suit stop me from replacing the electronics and showing others how to do the same.

Ultra MegaMax Dominator 3D printer: [drmrehorst.blogspot.com]
Re: Makerbot 5th generation, complete rework
December 06, 2015 11:48PM
I actually recently got a 5th gen replicator for free (seriously). Thankfully it has been working pretty good since I got it after a few tweaks *knocks on wood*, but I am thinking about revamping it after my CoreXY build is finished so I'm definitely interested in what you end up deciding on.

It looks like they used an H-bot belt configuration, correct? So I would think converting to CoreXY shouldn't be too hard and would be a better system than H-bot.

Like Dentist mentioned, I'd go 24v, particularly because it is supposed to quiet things down. Is there a 32bit board out that can handle 24v without any modification?


Re: Makerbot 5th generation, complete rework
December 06, 2015 11:54PM
The bigger question is what does the system use. as thats not something I want to replace. Yeah the duet boards are 32 bit and take 24v or 12v. Nice board
Re: Makerbot 5th generation, complete rework
December 07, 2015 01:17AM
Smoothie is also 24v capable out of the box.
Re: Makerbot 5th generation, complete rework
July 29, 2016 12:13AM
Have you gone any further? ... I have a makerbot mini I would like to refit and would like to hear of some others experiences refitting Generation 5 printers.
Re: Makerbot 5th generation, complete rework
July 29, 2016 04:12AM
Yeah the guy who sold it to me was ... well he just needed to turn off one setting and it works perfectly. Probably a thousand hours since without even a jam.
Re: Makerbot 5th generation, complete rework
July 29, 2016 04:38PM
Any clue what the 'magic setting' was.

Mine works better with a smart extruder+, but I still can't monitor it using octoprint or similar software.
Re: Makerbot 5th generation, complete rework
June 01, 2017 05:05AM
I'm going to speculate the magic setting was the filament run out detection.

I got a mini for around $200 and here I am at this post for the same reason.
It seems like it can be a nice printer if only it gets decrapified.
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