Upgrade and Modernize Your Legacy Universal Testing System

3400 and 6800 Series system retrofits allow legacy Instron universal testing machines to be upgraded with modern control electronics and software, extending the life of your testing system and mitigating the risk of unexpected downtime. Retrofitted systems also gain access to the latest testing features designed to improve efficiency, ergonomics, and operator safety, as well as expanded capabilities for leveraging the latest accessories.

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To prevent unplanned downtime and ensure your machine's continued longevity, Instron’s system retrofits provide a comprehensive overhaul of your machine and replace many at-risk components. This update rejuvenates your system and can extend its life for years.

Motor Installation on 6800 Series Retrofit
Installing 6800 Series Handset


Many legacy components in the existing machine are replaced with current and modern hardware, ensuring that replacement components are immediately available should the need for service arise. The items that are replaced will be restored to Life Cycle Phase 1, ensuring minimal downtime should one of these more critical parts of the machine fail, as these items are fully serviceable and in current production from Instron.


Enjoy the the latest in testing technology, features, and Bluehill® Universal software designed to streamline your operation and improve operator safety. In addition to future-proofing your lab, the upgrade is fully backwards compatible with most legacy strain and load devices, allowing you to continue using your existing accessories.

Operator Using Retrofitted Universal Testing System

Enjoy the Latest Safety Architecture Without Sacrificing Throughput

Operator Protect

With the 3400 and 6800 Series Retrofits you gain access to Instron's patent-pending Operator Protect architecture, an intelligent workflow that keeps equipment and operators safer by controlling system status from setup to test completion.

Safety Coaching in Bluehill Universal Software

Built-In Safety Coaching

Bluehill Universal provides operators with clear visual cues indicating their system's status at all times. This makes it easy for users to know when the system is in a safe set up mode, and it provides clear reminders to exit the test space once safety limits are removed.

Smart-Close Air Kit

When loading specimens into pneumatic grips, the Smart-Close Air Kit uses a lower grip pressure and restricted closing speed, reducing finger pinch hazards. It then increases to the higher pressure setting before testing commences.

Collision Mitigation

During the test setup phase, Collision Mitigation reduces the risk of damage to load cells, grips, fixtures, delicate specimens, and other equipment by stopping the crosshead if force is detected up return or during a jog.

Auto Positioning

Auto Positioning saves the correct fixture separation or starting location for each test method, ensuring that all operators run each test exactly the same way across all shifts every day. This feature is only available on 6800 Series System Retrofits.


All system controls and interfaces are upgraded to the latest platform, establishing greater uniformity within your lab. This enables one operator to utilize all up-to-date Instron testing equipment without the need for additional training.

Retrofitted Universal Testing Systems

Instron Retrofit with AVE 2 Advanced Video Extensometer


Retrofitting your legacy testing system allows for seamless integration with modern accessories, opening the door to new testing capabilities. Your modernized system will be compatible with all of Instron’s latest testing accessories, including advanced extensometry and load cell technology for even greater precision and accuracy.

Explore Accessories

Updated Hardware and New Features
Universal Testing System Retrofits
  3400 Series Retrofits 6800 Series Retrofits
Eligible Legacy Systems 3360, 3380 Series Models:
3365, 3366, 3367, 3369
3382, 3382A, 3384, 3385H
4460, 4480, 5560, 5560A, 5580,
5860, 5880, 5960, 5980 Series Models:
4464, 4465, 4466, 4467, 4469
4481, 4482, 4484, 4485
5564, 5565, 5566, 5567, 5569
5565A, 5566A, 5567A, 5569A
5581, 5582, 5584, 5585, 5585H
5864*, 5865*, 5866*, 5867*, 5869*
5881*, 5882*, 5884*, 5885, 5885H*
5965, 5966, 5967, 5969
5982, 5984, 5985

* Retrofitted 586X and 588X frames are converted to static testers
Integrated 3400 Series Operator Panel  
Removeable 6800 Series Ergonomic Handset  
New Control Electronics
Robust Sheet Metal Electronics Enclosure
Maintenance-Free Brushless AC Motor
Speed Sensor
Power Amplifier
Drive Belt
E-Stop Button
Indicator Panel
System Front Cover Only applicable to table model retrofits.
Absolute Encoder  
Absolute Position Battery  
Operator Protect
Safety Coaching
Collision Mitigation
Smart-Close Air Kit (Optional Add-On)
Auto Positioning  
Optional Drop-Through Load Cell Adapters The drop-through load cell adapter allows for 2580 Series load cells to be used on a retrofitted frame, enabling you to take advantage of the advanced performance features in Bluehill Universal software. This includes the ability to measure forces down to 1/1000th of the rated load cell capacity and it gives the retrofitted frame full access to Instron's Collision Mitigation feature.  

Additional Notes:
1. Unlisted models can be upgraded upon request. Please contact us for support.
2. System speed, compliance, and general operating specifications are limited by the system being upgraded and the strain and load equipment utilized.

Service Engineer Performing a Universal Testing System Retrofit

Don't see a system upgrade that fits your needs?

Our Engineered Solutions Group and Applications Team is here to understand your unique challenges and work with you to create a solution that is tailored to your testing system. Our solutions range from system upgrades for machines in harsh testing environments to upgrades to competitor systems.