I put in a proposal to our hackerspace to procure and modify 2 Creality Ender 5 printers.
I wanted to upgrade them with 32bit controller boards and what should be a more reliable power supply compared to what they come with. The idea was to get 2 printers at less than the cost of a new Ultimaker, since our Ultimaker 2 is on it's last legs. I wanted to run 2 identical printers with identical mods, and have a stock of replacement parts for them too. The idea behind that was I wanted to be able to cobble one functional printer out of the two, should they go down for any reason. Two completely modified Ender 5's are still way less money than a Ultimaker 2+ would be, so I figured it was worth a go based on the ownership I have had of my personal Ender 5 unit.
I like the fact that these things have a really large community behind them, that the power supply is enclosed in a metal box below the unit, and servicing the Ender 5 is quite a bit easier than the 3 is. All motors, wiring, hotend, etc are easily accessible without removing the bed from the unit. Also in my thought process was the fact that we don't have to worry so much about clearances or things people might put on the table behind or in front of the printers, as the bed only moves on the Z axis. One stepper motor per axis removes some complication from troubleshooting issues too.
Details of the proposal were archived on our Google Group, link below.
The 3D printers were ordered as were most of the spare parts and non-3d printed mods that are going onto this printer. We're still waiting to see if the TH3D EZBoard Lite V1.2 boards ever go back into stock, and if they don't, we'll be ditching them to use BIGTREETECH SKR MINI E3 V1.2 or V2 boards instead.
I am currently using my own 3D printers at home to print some mods for the printers, and to get the parts ready for assembly. Some mods are easier to install prior to the printer being put together.
The current list so far
Heatbed cable strain relief
Snap-in cable protector
X-axis belt/pulley covers
Y-axis belt/pulley covers