This project was started in 2011 as an NES portable laptop in a 1980's theme, closely resembling the TV we used to have that I played NES on. The cartridge bay I was trying to have pop open like a cassette deck, and there is also a bay for one built-in hard wired controller. I was hoping to have 2, but that would have made the unit either way too long (if I had them on each side of the cart like I originally wanted) or way too thick (if I stacked the controllers on top of each other). The screen is offset on the top, and the grill next to it is made from the ridge design parts of the top of an NES case, which will open up like a door to reveal the power, reset and screen buttons. The mono speaker is also hidden behind the grill.
The case is vaccuum-formed polystyrene, painted in a "pebble" color, which is too tan. While the paint failed in being an off-white aging 80's plastic electronics color I was looking for, it will be a good base for a faux-woodgain finish on the outside of the case to class it up à la Last Week's TaT. The rest of the "pebble" painted parts will be painted either of the NES grey. 3D printed bases will be created for structure and placements.
Here's what I left myself with. Not too messy other than the jumble of wires in the upper right hand corner of the bottom case, and a lot of loose/popped wires to seemingly nowhere. It has a lot of ground wires for some reason. Just the Power and reset switches wires up for the top case; the screen is completely unattached; I probably detached some wires so repaint the top of the case at some point in time.
Here's the rest of the parts. I have a screen cover from another screen, An aftermarket broken Circle button for Power, a reset button from a Super Joy 3, and squishy bits from an old stereo remote that I found at Goodwill. To make those look more like the buttons on a TV, I added another row for Screen Contrast -,+ Volume -,+ and bult in Start/Select buttons, for fun. Really no purpose but should be fun at least a couple times using it on NES Title screens.
Also of note, the paint color looks much better in pictures than it actually does. Here it looks pretty close to the grey-ish I was hoping for, but actually seeing the color it's more a gross tan than grey. Should be a good base for a woodgrain finish at least. Some of the cuts aren't so great either so now that I have a dremel I'll do my best to even them out a bit more as best I can with the small amount of plastic I can afford to remove.
This is a terrible picture (but the best I could do). For the edges of the faces I went benheck oldschool and used bending aluminum, which worked well but I didn't like the breakup in texture going from the polystyrene to the aluminum so I wrapped and glued some "Art Tape" around the corner of the edges as an accent design, which will also serve as a marker on how far down the parts recess into the outer case.
No matter about the psone screen not being hooked up, as we can use the A/V out. I have a switch wired up to +5 on the screen so when you use the A/V out you have the option of using both or turning the built in screen off. Weird angle on this picture as I was balancing alligator clips and wires on my leg.
The afformentioned loose screen. Standard Psone Screen. It's a laptop project and not necessarily a portable so it'll run off of the PSone adapter, so no need to LED mod the screen to save battery life or anything. Mono sound (since it's NES) so one of those speakers will be removed, and the other lengthened along with the screen control buttons to be housed under the NES ridge grill on the Top case.
Next up, I might as well work on the case before I wire the screen back up to only have to remove it again to paint. I have some extra pieces of polystyrene to practice the effect on. Not sure if I can use spray paint for said effect or not, if you can manipulate spraypaint before it dries or if it'll stain too quick and get blotchy. I guess find out soon enough.
Case update. Working on the aluminum inserts that will attach to the plastic parts of the case via the friction hinge in the back and 3D printed accents in the front. Not sure if I'll need any supports on the side but it looks fine for now. We'll see when I start placing in all the components.
I rubber banded the two parts together when placing the drill holes to make sure they lined up correctly for the friction hinge. The aluminum parts you see will be completely recessed into the plastic parts of the case, and the black outlined parts that I did with "art tape" from Hobby Lobby will be visible when the case parts are installed.
Pilot holes drilled. No pictures of my murky garage but I just used a normal drill NBD.
With the aluminum holes drilled and the case recessed into the base, marking out the holes in the plastic case.
Hinge Action. It doesn't meet up quite flush, but not as bad as this picture has it shown in the right corner. Because I went with 1 middle hinge over 2 (they're expensive!) there's a bit of travel causing some alignment issues, but I'm just going to 3d print out some normal hinges for better alignment. Not sure where to put them yet cause they'll need to be equidistant from each other so I don't go crazy. Not a lot of room to do it though.
More info on the back here because why not, the wire going through to connect the cases will also be on the other end, and is from an NES controller for maximum authenticity. The switch is wired up to +5 volts to the screen so you can turn it on/off (can't remember if it's optional or you if have to, to activate) the 3.5mm A/V jack next to it. The square hole is the power jack, and another NES wire on the end as said above. Fun stuff I suppose.
Case open. Goes all the way to 180 degress, not that you would ever want to do that. Was helpful for me though putting in the screws.
Closing the case again is giving me a bit of an issue because it doesn't go back down all the way flush. This was with the torque screw on the hinge all the way tightened, so I loosened it a bit and now it's only about half this bad (just didn't feel like taking a better picture lol. Obviously I can't unscrew the torque screw all the way cause then it'll won't hold the top case up and it'll be all floppy. This was with nothing inside the top case too so I'll have to do some more science to that later once I get the screen and it's components in place. I'll probably just find some circular magnets at Hobby Lobby or something for the front corners to clip together.
About the paint, I bought this woodgraining kit to make the faux woodgrain on the outer case parts. You use the circle-y part first, rocking it back and forth to make the knots and then use the triange tool with the teeth on it to add in more grain. The gross pebble tan color will remain as the base color, but I'm going to scruff it up with an Emory board (and maybe an exacto knife line here or there) to make some grooves. I have some normal brown spraypaint that I'll spray onto a plate to dab on with the woodgrain tool. I think it'll stain too quickly and I'll be unable to manipulate it quick enough if I sprayed it right on the plastic. I have 2 test pieces I will try both methods on before doing so to my case. It just has to stop being gross outside so I can actually do it, but since this is the Midwest hopefully I won't have to wait until March
Was working on my project during chevy's steam and designed some test parts to 3D print. Made 2 extra hinges for stability (the top part of the case wobbles a bit when it's open) and some kickplate latches for the front of the case to add some design to where the screws were used to attach the aluminum bend to the outer case.
Installed on the front of the case, picture makes it look a little wavy for some reason but it's okay. A radius was used on the edges of the parts to have it sort of curve into the case instead of being all blocky.
As you might tell from the above picture, I seemed to have mathed incorrectly and the parts to do match up with the edges like I had planned. An extra 2mm has been added to each so it'll go all the way to the lip as warranted, and I might add a bit more to make it slightly taller.
And for the back, where I have the cable extensions that connect both halves of the case I'm going to put the hinges there and move the cables out to the edges, which I think would be more aesthetically pleasing than to keep the cables where they are and have the hinges on the outside of that. No room to put them anywhere else due to the A/V switch and port on one side of the friction hinge and the power button on the other, but even so the 3D printed hinges would be too close to the main one and then really not have any support anyway. This is what it looks like now...
...and here's a quick photoshop of the layout I'm hoping for when completed. Shouldn't be that much of an issue since I designed the hinges to have the same height as the holes for the cables, so either way I was drilling two extra holes on each side regardless but I think it looks nicer this way than if the hinges and cables were flipped.
All in all test prints went ok. Just need to make the latch plates taller to match up with the lip of the outer cases and I am going to slim down the hinges a couple millimeters as well so I can add in a nut to the end of the screws that are holding the hinges together just in case for extra stability. More casework abounds, as I hope to at least finish that before the contest is up. Other than these 3D printed parts and their placement all I need then (for the outer base parts at least, still have to fix the inner sections) is the model paint at Hobby Lobby for the woodgrain effect.
Try #2 on some prints. The ones from before on the left, and the new ones on the right.
Added 2 mm on the bottom so it would reach the lip of the case and 2mm or so on the top to be a little taller. Couldn't go much more than that as that's where the case starts to curve.
Much better look than before, IMO.
Also made new hinges, which aren't as wide to better fit the middle screw. Doesn't line up so great in this picture on account of the nylon screws I used to test placement (only thing I could find at the time), so once I get the correct size it still won't be perfect but a little better.
Thinking about the cable that connects both sides of the case, I cant recall why I was using two of them, other than to be even lol. I'll make sure before cutting the holes but I think just the one should suffice, so here's another photoshop of where I plan to put it instead of the two at the ends.
For paint, I bought some Model Master Acryl Paint from Hobby Lobby, where I plan to use a mixture of two youtube faux woodgain tutorials for the outside of the case.
Paints! Used Acryl model paint in Burnt Sienna, dry brushed on with a cheap toothbrush to simulate woodgrain. Came out better than I expected!
Top doesn't look that great yet, since all the sides are brush-stroked vertically I tried to kinda angle the sides so it all came together on the top. Going to add in another coat to see if I can blend it a little better.
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Apr 10, 2019 20:26:24 GMT -6