Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Ethernet enabled Arduino as RepRap host

Admittedly this is a little premature, but I'm keen to detach my printer from the host computer as soon as possible. Wired Ethernet is my preferred option - it can be accessed from all of my devices (desktops, laptops, iPad, iPhone, etc), is fast, reliable and fairly cheap compared with wireless options.

Reading this tutorial Arduino Ethernet + SD makes it sound doable and there's a chance I can borrow an Ethernet shield to have a play.

I envisage an Aduino/Ethernet combo acting as the host and talking serial to the printer's Arduino Mega/RAMPS controller. The host would support uploading a G-code file to the SD card, queuing prints, control power to the printer (toggle ATX power) and also act as a watchdog by monitoring printer enclosure temperature/dead comms link. Cost of the Ethernet module would be somewhat offset by avoiding the need for a display/controls on the host/printer as these can be provided via the web interface and accessed from a existing device.

It might also be practical for the host to operate multiple printers - something I'm keen to try.


  1. Did you manage to combine arduino ethernet into the RAMPS package, what firmware did you use and/or updated?


  2. Not yet, still on my todo list... Was planning to start with an ethernet shield and would use marlin firmware as the starting point.