Connector wiring

As I built Bottie-bot, the Makerbot Thing-o-Matic, I was anxious to get it building and didn’t consider making modifications as I built. As a result, modifications I make to the machine is a bit more difficult than it needs to be. Every time I needed to remove the X or Y stage, I had to pop the bottom and disconnect the stepper motor wires. The electronics bay on the T-o-M is a bit tight and a pain to work in and get it all back together.

So, I bought a bunch of D-sub 9 pin connectors (DE9) and with a bit of trepidation, snipped the wires to the steppers on Bottie-bot. But, I made sure I wired it up properly, checking and double-checking to make sure I had the wires properly oriented. The colored wires made that easier, but when soldering the wires to the connectors, you’re looking at the back of the connector, so it can be easy to mess up.

I use this housing for the D-sub connectors. Thing 10456

This time, I didn’t forget that I had some braided sleeve. I put that on the cut wires and taped it up out of the way. If you are intending to use heat-shrink tubing, don’t forget to put it on prior to soldering.


I usually put the stepper wires on the outside of the D-sub, and this one has the wires for the cooling fan. It makes for an easy removal of the Makerbot extruder stepper. I match up the connectors to verify that I’ve got it right.


Heat shrink the ends. Then dump a bit of hot glue into the housing (Thing 10456). This will connect the halves of the housing as well as act as an additional strain relief.



Use bolts in the holes to hold the pieces together until it dries. Push the sleeve into the housing and squirt some more hot glue into the housing to finish the strain relief. Tape or zip-tie the sleeve.

In this case, I used the bolt to mount it to the z-axis.


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