Worklog My First N64p

Discussion in 'Nintendo 64' started by Matthew, Jul 18, 2016.

  1. Matthew Formally known as Chaos Staff Member . .

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2016
    Messages:
    523
    Likes Received:
    975
    Location:
    USA
    Portables:
    1
    Hey everyone,

    I'm pretty new to Portablizing and console modding, but I thought I would post my worklog for you all to see. If you have any advice or tips, please let me know!

    I was first introduced to portablizing quite a few years ago when I was 18. I didn't know much about electronics, I'd only successfully jailbroke my iPod touch, (yes, iPod touch. It was that long ago.) softmodded my Wii, and flashed my Xbox 360 Disk Drive. I made an attempt at an N64 Portable, but it was a complete failure. I was just trying to follow some tutorials on the subject without really learning the steps and process behind it. As such I recently decided that I want to do it again, but do it right. I do cyber security work, and I have really wanted to try my hand at electronics, so I figured that this would be a great way to get into the field.

    I decided to do an N64 portable for a few reasons:

    1. It probably won't be as hard as a GC or a Wii.
    2. There is a decent amount of documentation on the subject available.
    3. It has some of my favorite games that I played as a child.


    The part that intimidated me the most was building a case. I looked at some of the cases at Polycase, but I wanted something a bit sleeker. I saw some 3D printed cases and I was really interested but the 3D printer I got for Christmas last year was having some serious issues, so I thought that I would try getting one of those GBA plastic carrying cases I've seen a few modders use. After losing 6 bid wars on Ebay( who knew that they were so popular?), I decided to see if I could fix my 3D Printer.


    I have a Solidoodle 2 with a 6'" x 6" by 6" print bed. I spent 2 weeks researching the crap out of Google, I finally was able to get it to print!

    [​IMG]


    Now, the biggest problem with my printer is that it has a pretty small print bed. So I took the files that Chris Downing released ( Huge shout out and thanks to him!) and split them in Tinkercad so that they would fit.

    While my n64 console, screen, batteries, etc were shipping, I decided to start printing off the case. I was using black ABS plastic and I was having a major headache trying to get the bracket pieces to not warp. I finally decided that ABS wasn't doing it for me and ordered some PLA.

    Here it is:

    [​IMG]



    And to my delight, the brackets printed off extremely well!

    [​IMG]


    Here is the case as it stands now:
    [​IMG]


    I'm planning on doing some finishing work to the case (sanding, etc) and sticking it together with ABS glue (which I'm not sure how it will work because PLA parts) or using some Goop that I've seen other modders use, then applying Bondo, spray painting, and clear coating. I'm kinda digging on the black and red color scheme and I think I'll be keeping that.

    If you have any tips for these steps, I would greatly appreciate them, or if you just have any comments and suggestions, I could use them.

    I'm super pumped for this new BitBuilt forum and I plan on being an active member.

    I'll give you more updates as they happen. I plan on creating a super sweet, detailed guide on building one of these things sometime soon to contribute to the forums.
     
  2. Noah The Manager Staff Member . . .

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2016
    Messages:
    1,814
    Likes Received:
    2,033
    Location:
    The World Wide Web
    Portables:
    4
    Wow, that case looks incredible! Looking forward to seeing more!
     
  3. cheese the tallest memer in town Staff Member . . .

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2016
    Messages:
    2,494
    Likes Received:
    2,215
    Location:
    Florida
    I agree with Noah, this is gonna be one great looking portable when it's done!
     
  4. Shank Certified Wiitard Staff Member . .

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2016
    Messages:
    1,067
    Likes Received:
    1,993
    Location:
    Texas
    Portables:
    3
    Loving the 2-tone body and all its curvy glory. Looking forward to this one.
     
  5. Matthew Formally known as Chaos Staff Member . .

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2016
    Messages:
    523
    Likes Received:
    975
    Location:
    USA
    Portables:
    1
    Thanks, guys!

    I was wondering if anyone here has a sweet guide on modding 3rd party controllers with a GC thumbstick?

    ModRetro doesn't have any of the photos or sources, and benheck is just as bad.
     
  6. ShockSlayer Ivan - the tyranny of evil men . .

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2016
    Messages:
    1,491
    Likes Received:
    3,741
    Location:
    Ragnarok, re-entry
    Portables:
    All
    Essentially you have to match the pin configuration. Assuming it's a standard 4 wire voltage divider(most newer 3rd party controllers are) then you can just solder it up.

    Posting some pics of the board and joystick would help us identify what you've got.
     
  7. sl33pydog .

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2016
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    5
    That is the stockiest stocky solidoodle ;). Surprised you haven't upgraded parts on it. Like everyone else this should look awesome once it's done.
     
  8. Downing .

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2016
    Messages:
    104
    Likes Received:
    262
    Portables:
    20ish...
    Very nice. With the first version of this design I actually did have to split the brackets like you show because the ABS would warp so much. But switching to PLA has solved that problem, though you have to make the split with only a 6x6 bed which is unfortunate. Glad to see you're making it work! I am surprised you got the power switch cut out to print without supports...general physics say that you should have had a much bigger sag or an all out fail on that portion, but it seems to have printed in a workable enough state so good job on that!
     
  9. Matthew Formally known as Chaos Staff Member . .

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2016
    Messages:
    523
    Likes Received:
    975
    Location:
    USA
    Portables:
    1
    Thanks!

    I tried printing them with supports at first and my printer kept adding supports on the brackets that made it a huge pain to get off. (It's on the inside of the brackets where the holes are) and so I thought what the heck, I'll try it without supports and it surprisingly worked!

    How did you put the whole case together? I'm thinking about using Goop for attaching the brackets to the face plate and back plate but but for the plates themselves I just barely tried using ABS glue. So far it doesn't seem to promising, I'm letting it cure right now and I'll check back in a few hours.
     
  10. Matthew Formally known as Chaos Staff Member . .

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2016
    Messages:
    523
    Likes Received:
    975
    Location:
    USA
    Portables:
    1
    Question:

    I just pulled out my n64 from it's shell and I plugged it in to test to make sure if it was working. (I had previously tested it before removing it and it worked fine). I put in a game, made sure I had the jumper pak in there, but nothing came up on the screen. The led also wasn't on, so I tried testing the power adapter on another known good n64, but that one wouldn't turn on either. So I plugged the removed n64 back in and used my multi-meter to see if power was coming down, I got 3.3v on the middle line, but I'm pretty sure I accidentally shorted it because a small spark appeared and now I'm not getting anything from it on my multi-meter.

    Did I just screw myself? or is there a small possibility that I could save this mobo?
     
  11. Crazzyleprechaun Formerly known as GarageFactory .

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2016
    Messages:
    155
    Likes Received:
    92
    Are you sure you put the expansion pack in the right way
     
  12. Luke .

    Joined:
    May 23, 2016
    Messages:
    197
    Likes Received:
    200
    Location:
    Texas
    Portables:
    2
    I don't think there's any way to save a fried mobo, if that's what you're asking. And yeah, shorting voltages will do it.

    Lesson learned - if you're reading voltages at that spot on the board, be super careful, because those 3.3v/7.4v/ground pins are very close together. I learned that one the hard way as well.

    Don't give up! ;)
     
  13. Matthew Formally known as Chaos Staff Member . .

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2016
    Messages:
    523
    Likes Received:
    975
    Location:
    USA
    Portables:
    1
    @GarageFactory - Yes I'm sure I put the jumper pak the right way. I thought that same thing at first.

    @Luke -- I guess that's what I get for being a newb. :P

    I have another n64 just for this reason, but I may order another n64 as another backup.

    Thanks!
     
  14. Luke .

    Joined:
    May 23, 2016
    Messages:
    197
    Likes Received:
    200
    Location:
    Texas
    Portables:
    2
    Indeed it is... but we've all been there :P
     
  15. ShockSlayer Ivan - the tyranny of evil men . .

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2016
    Messages:
    1,491
    Likes Received:
    3,741
    Location:
    Ragnarok, re-entry
    Portables:
    All
    Verify voltage is coming out of your power adapter before pronouncing it fried; those things will trip sometimes before any significant damage occurs.
     
  16. Downing .

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2016
    Messages:
    104
    Likes Received:
    262
    Portables:
    20ish...
    What he said, but you don't need to be a newb to fry a board. I recently did myself on my latest project...however, it's a PAL board that I toasted, so that was kind of a double FU. But, my good modding buddy ElectroModder lives in the UK and he's sourcing a couple PAL boards for me, stripping them down to save on shipping to the US so I'm lucking out there a bit, getting two for what one would normally run through ebay and international shipping.
     
  17. Matthew Formally known as Chaos Staff Member . .

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2016
    Messages:
    523
    Likes Received:
    975
    Location:
    USA
    Portables:
    1
    Thanks guys for everything!

    I didn't have much time to work on it today but after following @ShockSlayer and @Downing 's advice I was able to get it to boot!

    I'll give more updates when I can. Thanks again!
     
  18. Matthew Formally known as Chaos Staff Member . .

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2016
    Messages:
    523
    Likes Received:
    975
    Location:
    USA
    Portables:
    1
    I'm trying to trim a 1st party n64 controller. After trimming, I can't seem to get it to work.

    I was following this tutorial from modretro, but I think my controller revision is different.

    Ignore the wire in the middle attached to the Z button, that was for testing purposes.

    Here is a picture.

    IMG_0483.JPG

    I soldered the wire on the right because the guide talked about needing to connect those traces.

    What am I doing wrong here?
     
  19. ShockSlayer Ivan - the tyranny of evil men . .

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2016
    Messages:
    1,491
    Likes Received:
    3,741
    Location:
    Ragnarok, re-entry
    Portables:
    All
  20. Matthew Formally known as Chaos Staff Member . .

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2016
    Messages:
    523
    Likes Received:
    975
    Location:
    USA
    Portables:
    1
    Latest update:

    I finished relocating the cart slot a little while back!
    IMG_0478.JPG

    Plus I have a been working on the controller:

    IMG_0488.JPG

    After trimming it, I had some issues getting it to boot, but thanks to @ShockSlayer and some information from a different website, I realized that I had to jump a connection (which is what that wire right above the IC is.) and it ended up booting fine! I haven't decided if I want to add on a memory pak yet, which is why I left the area for it. If not, then I'll trim it some more.

    Wiring to the IC was a huge pain, mainly due that I'm new to all this soldering, but while my soldering job isn't the finest, it works.
    The next thing to do on my list is: trim and wire up the screen ( I choose to go with a psone screen), I'm considering LED modding the screen. Then I need to finish up the case by bondo-ing it and spray painting it. Then wire everything up with batteries!
     

Share This Page

Loading...