Upgrades for the Taz 5.

Other than the dual heads, are there any 3rd party upgrades for the Taz 5?

I know Aleph is working on auto bed leaving but are there any 3rd party kits for this .

Also any thing to address the head free play issue.

Head free play?

What upgrades are you looking for? If you look on Thingiverse, there are plenty of things to print and replace for the Taz…

For tethered printing, Octopi is a good upgrade.

Buy a few extra nozzles for flexibility.

You could replace the rods and bearings with hardened rods and linear ball bearings. You could go with anti backlash nuts for the Z, but that would probably require redesigning the z axis mounts.
You could also build an enclosure.

So is Octopi same as Octoprint? And is this a good option for printing from the computer with very large files? And long print times? Dose it send the Gcode data to a network location for the printer to access while printing? I assume this reduces the computer bogging down and the need to turn off screen saver and power save mode.

The free play issue I was talking about is the print head assembly has play in it, not as solid as you would think it should be. There is a couple threads on this, I’m just starting to wonder if it is cause for not so clean prints.

I am currently working on an enclosure.

I have looked on thingsverse for stuff as well.

Octopi is a pre-built distribution of octoprint. It is set up on raspbian. You just write the image to the SD card, boot the Raspberry Pi from that card, do a little configuration and you are set. It is very easy.

Octoprint connects to your network via ethernet or wifi on the Raspberry Pi. The Pi connects to your printer and sends gcode via USB. You slice and export
gcode with your favorite slicer then upload it to octoprint.

It frees up your pc and give you a nice Web interface to control and monitor the print from any Web browser.

The older open version of Repetier-Server works well, is lightweight and handles multiple printers: https://github.com/repetier/Repetier-Server. There are a couple of forks with a bit more development, but I haven’t played with them yet.

There was an extruder redesign from one of the community members that looked promising to reduce the toolhead rock / play. The roof and bearings mentioned by saramos is a good upgrade also.

Nopick is spot on with octopi/octoprint. It replaces the need for a dedicated workstation or laptop connected to the printer. The smaller footprint raspberry pi allows control of the printer through a universally accessible web interface. Control the toolhead, temps and start g-code files. Also has an integrated cura slicing engine so stl files can be uploaded… Never tried it myself, though.

My workflow with the octoprint:

  • Set slicer to wait for nozzle to preheat… I don’t like the delay to wait for preheat bed.
  • Slice project
  • upload resulting g-code file (drag and drop to web interface)
  • preheat bed to 50C
  • load and start print in octoprint
  • print waits for nozzle to heat up, then starts to print. At the same time bed should reach 100C.
  • switch to camera and check that first layer goes down well
  • check in every so often

Optionally, I use a motion sensor to check bed movement. Then ater 20min of no bed motion, the printer is turned off… through a Z-wave plug and some home automation scripts. No more waking up at 4am to turn off the printer after a 14hr print. :slight_smile:. Really, to prolong the PSU and heatsink fan.

Edit: Enclosure is a hood thing too.

Octoprint sounds really awesome! I really like the idea of controlling everything from the PC, sending the Gcode to the network and just letting it run. I’m starting to really hate using the SD card approach. Constantly coping files and recopying when you make changes. And I have found spooling the print job from the controller to PC tends to bogs your system at times.

My Dimension printer has an on board hard drive the print files are sent to, stored then accessed from while printing. So the Octoprint set up is pretty similar to this work flow witch I like.

Can some one explain to me Raspberry Pi I see this term all over the hacker space world but have no clue what it is??? Is this a separate device?

How do you go about setting up an on board camera for print monitoring? What type of camera is needed? Web cam??

I assume since it’s controlled via Internet you can monitor and tweak your printing on an iPad???

Thanks for all the good input

The Raspberry Pi in short is a credit card sized computer. Octopi is a pre-packed image of Octoprint and Raspbian (OS) which installs on the Raspberry Pi.

Just like a normal PC, the camera attaches to the Raspberry Pi. There are USB cameras that are compatible also, but I use the camera made for the Raspberry Pi: https://www.raspberrypi.org/help/camera-module-setup/
But I’ve read a USB cam like the Logitech C310 can also be used with the advantage of focus. Octoprint then uses the camera for live streaming for remote monitoring or captured to create the timelapse (sample attached).

The web interface (accessible from iPad or any other web browser) allows manipulation like: setting temps, controlling print head (when not printing), start / stop of project. It works with the gcode file from your slicer… so any manipulation of the project would need to be performed on a slicer and re-uploaded to Octoprint.

Accessing from the Internet is possible, but for the most part its meant to be used on your local wireless network. It has multilevel user security… meaning you have to login to control the printer. Guest/default access allows viewing of the temp and the video stream. Logging in with a valid username/password allows for control of the printer.

A sample timelapse video is attached… uncompress to view.
bearing6_N5-.15_20150416223326.mpg.zip (1.58 MB)

Thanks for the info and schooling me on this. I’ve been researching it and I’m thinking I’m going to buy one of these have a few last questions.

I looked on amazon and newegg, looks like amazon is a good source to buy one ? Good prices for package deals with all accessories you need.

There are different models with different RAM capacity. How dose the RAM capacity effect the functionality when dealing with large files? I guess the Rasberry Pi never really sees the original STL file right? It is only dealing with the Gcode?? Right? SO if that is the case dose it ever really get bogged down were it effects the preformance and speed?

I’m not the biggest fan of wireless stuff. It says they also have eithernet connectivity for a wired connection. So would you have the same functionality via wired connection you would as the wifi? And avoid possible wireless issues?

As for the camera module you have the one made for the Raspberry Pi. Once hooked up to the Raspberry Pi it’s on a very short ribbon cable witch means if you wanted to capture video of your printer you would have to keep the rasberry Pi right next to the printer witch seams kinda lame. Is there a way wound this with this camera?

I have a Logitech HD Pro C920 Web cam, were can I find out if it is compatible with the Raspberry Pi? And be able to simply plug in and use. I like the idea of having a long cable on it.

I like these 2 kits Can you tell me if this is everything I will need to get up and running? Other than keyboard, mouse, monitor and on board camera. Oh and a SD card reader witch I also have.

As far as I can tell the only between the B and non B kit is the micro SD card?



Both kits look about the same… The clear case has the slot for native raspberry pi camera. An 8GB card is plenty.

The Octoprint wiki has a list of compatible USB cameras:https://github.com/foosel/OctoPrint/wiki/Webcams-known-to-work

If you do get the RPi camera, a longer ribbon cable is required… well it really depends on where you mount the camera. If on the need, then definitely a longer cable.

I keep the octopi wired versus wireless. It’s close to a network switch.


So I ordered a RPI with NOOBS preinstalled on the SD card that comes with it.

As I understand it the NOOBS SD card contains several operating systems on it. Do I install the raspbian OS for use with Octoprint?

IS octo print already part of the raspbian OS or will I need to install Octoprint as well .

Here is what you need (assuming you are using Windows):

  1. An SD card you are willing to overwrite. I would make sure it is at least 4 GB.
  2. SD Card formatter program: https://www.sdcard.org/downloads/formatter_4/
  3. SD Card image writer: http://sourceforge.net/projects/win32diskimager/
  4. The OctoPrint image file (newest is Jan 2015): http://mirror.tsone.net.uk/octopi/

Put an SD card in, format it, use the win32diskimager to write the OctoPi image to it, put it in the RPi, and boot. You will need a display and keyboard/mouse for your first boot and initial setup.

Do the “expand filesystem to fill full card” option (#1 on the initial boot menu). Change the password away from “raspberry”.


If using wireless adapter: type in “startx”, to get to the graphical user interface. Go to menu, settings, and click on “WiFi Config”. Hit scan, find your SSID, type in your password, and connect. The RPi will remember this network every time it boots. Shutdown, remove display, remove keyboard, plug in your TAZ, and voila! It should work.

You access the interface by pointing a browser to “octopi.local”. You will then get a menu asking you to keep Access Control Enabled (do this!), make a name and password to log in to the OctoPi console.

Next, on the “connect” menu, select AMC0, 115200 baud, check the boxes to make that happen automatically every boot, and hit connect. It should work. It if it doesn’t, change AMC0 to the other option you get.

I’ve been using the OctoPi with great results for awhile now. I would caution you to ensure you plug your 3D printer directly into a USB on the Pi, and not into a hub. For whatever reason, hubs sometime disconnect and reconnect, even if only for a second, but manage to ruin your print in the process.

Hope this helps!

Here is a good installation video.


Awsome thanks for the great input.

In Toms video he says you need a USB hub as well. I’m assuming the RPI he is working with is an older version that only has 2 USB ports? So, thus the need for an additional USB hub? Correct? In my case I’m covered with 4 ports (keyboard, mouse, display, Taz5 ). Correct???



Most people’s configuration involve a webcam, TAZ, and WiFi dongle. The Raspberry Pi 2 with 4 ports is relatively new, and has you covered.

I am running a B+ on my mini and a B2 on my Taz. I do not have a hub on either of them.

This WiFi dongle generally works with the Pi. I use one on my Heatermeter (https://github.com/CapnBry/HeaterMeter/wiki.)


Thanks again guys for schooling me. I will check in when I get the R Pi installed and up and running.

I have some related questions about OctoPi/OctoPrint.

I have a KITTAZ that I upgraded with the LCD smart controller. It works great at just loading an .gcode file onto the SD card and print from the LCD controller. This way I am untethered.

I would however like to monitor my prints via a webcam, and if necessary, shut down the printer if there are any problems.

So Can I use OctoPi and the LCD controller at the same time? Or should I instead just use a smart controllable outlet like Belkin Wemo and a webcam (maybe with a raspberry pi).

I’ve never tried to stop a print from the LCD… I do most the control through octoprint. I have adjusted flow rate through the LCD when I got it wrong when slicing. The wemo would be the ultimate to control the power.