Modding / Repair tools

Discuss modifications you have done or plan to do to your Dreamcast or any other hardware, or discuss devices you want to build. If your console does not work or is acting up, ask about fixing it in here.
sixteen-bit
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Modding / Repair tools

Post by sixteen-bit » Sun Dec 01, 2002 5:40 pm

OK, so this is all prettymuch common sense for most of us but hopefully this will help some people get into modding.. y'never know, eh.

So, if you have very few or absolutely no modding tools and want to make your DC or whatever nicer on the eye, these could be what you are looking for.

Soldering:
At some point or another, you're going to have to make electrical joins-- soldering's where it's at.

A basic iron should be all you need to get started with smaller projects. These can be bought cheaply on their own or as part of larger packs. 15W is usually recommended though 25W will also suffice. For larger projects, a nice low voltage temperature-controlled soldering iron would be a bonus though these are usually expensive.

Removing old solder joins, or parts where you just plain mess up (happens to all of us at sometime) is going to be hard unless you have the right tool for the job. Desolder pumps are cheap and are very useful to have around.

For safety reason, everyone should have a solder stand and ideally some form of safety glasses incase any molten solder starts spitting out at your face. Trust me, you do NOT want hot solder in your eyes.

If you buy the parts seperately, you will need to get a roll of solder. I cannot really advise on which type to get as I use the generic cheap stuff personally.

Wire / Cutting tools:

Obvious items such as screwdrivers, wire cutters and strippers and pliers are essentials for most work and a small multi-tool would be a good addition to any modders toolbox.
A rechargeable "powerdriver" is another useful item to have, though entirely optional.

Electrical tools

For most work, a really basic DMM (Digital MultiMeter) will be all you need for testing Voltages and resistances. These can be obtained for about ?5 UKP from places such as Maplin.

Components

If you are starting out, get some really cheap LEDs (the 8 pence ones generic 3mm red), resistors and some stripboard and practice soldering these components. Next, decide what you want to do and go have some fun tricking out whatever you are customising.





(Ugh, sorry for the briefness of this guide. It's been 6 weeks since I had a day off and my brain is shot :/ )
Guys, feel free to add stuff. I'll edit more of my thoughts into this tomorrow
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Post by EverStoned » Sun Dec 01, 2002 5:47 pm

Painting

You will need:
Krylon Paint (None/Semi-Gloss)
Clear finish
Masking tape.

Use a coat or 2 on the plastic with the Krylon. Then add some clear gloss. Use the masking tape so you don't spray over things you don't want sprayed.
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Post by ninja » Sun Dec 01, 2002 6:01 pm

cant forget electrical tape, that really comes in handy.
Delete my posting account.

Thanks.
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Post by EverStoned » Sun Dec 01, 2002 6:03 pm

ninja wrote:cant forget electrical tape, that really comes in handy.
Tru dat!
I had a totally fucked-up LED controller mod where the light went out whenever I sqeezed too hard. Solved with my good friend, electrical tape.
bizzle

Post by bizzle » Sun Dec 01, 2002 6:12 pm

Before painting anything, such as a case, follow the instructions below.

First completly gut the case
Second, Put the case in hot water and soap and clean it completly to make sure to get off all dust, dirt or anything else.
Third, make sure all soap is off and its rinsed completly.
Fourth, wipe the case dry then let it sit in a nice warm spot for a few hours to make sure its completly dry.
Fifth wipe gently with paper towl to remove any new dust, make sure not to leave any of the paper towl on it.
Then do your painting in LIGHT even coats, I recommend atleast 2 coats, then 2 coats of clear coat.
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Post by EverStoned » Sun Dec 01, 2002 6:14 pm

Xylene wrote: Second, Put the case in hot water and soap and clean it completly to make .
Remember to do this AFTER you remove the elecrical bits inside!
bizzle

Post by bizzle » Sun Dec 01, 2002 6:16 pm

Xylene wrote:Before painting anything, such as a case, follow the instructions below.

First completly gut the case
Second, Put the case in hot water and soap and clean it completly to make sure to get off all dust, dirt or anything else.
Third, make sure all soap is off and its rinsed completly.
Fourth, wipe the case dry then let it sit in a nice warm spot for a few hours to make sure its completly dry.
Fifth wipe gently with paper towl to remove any new dust, make sure not to leave any of the paper towl on it.
Then do your painting in LIGHT even coats, I recommend atleast 2 coats, then 2 coats of clear coat.
thats why i put that first on the list, if you didnt see it, lol
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Post by EverStoned » Sun Dec 01, 2002 6:16 pm

Dremel

The Dremel is a brilliant tool. Versions can go from 20$-100+$. The cheap one is good enough for whatever modding you will have to do.

It isn't always needed, especially if there are screws, but if not, this is deffinatly your tool for the job

I love my dremel.
bizzle

Post by bizzle » Sun Dec 01, 2002 6:21 pm

EverStoned wrote:Dremel

The Dremel is a brilliant tool. Versions can go from 20$-100+$. The cheap one is good enough for whatever modding you will have to do.

It isn't always needed, especially if there are screws, but if not, this is deffinatly your tool for the job

I love my dremel.

i gotta get one of those.
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Post by EverStoned » Sun Dec 01, 2002 6:27 pm

They're so sweet. Cuts through plastic like butter.
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Post by ninja » Sun Dec 01, 2002 6:28 pm

I use my dremel to cut off "pop rivets" on misc. things, plus it works great for doing misc mods [drilling small holes, cutting, etc...]. I got mine about a year ago and it cost me about $45.00, but it came with a lot of "bits". The sander on it comes in handy also.
Delete my posting account.

Thanks.
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Post by btm4k » Sun Dec 01, 2002 8:50 pm

EverStoned wrote:Dremel

The Dremel is a brilliant tool. Versions can go from 20$-100+$. The cheap one is good enough for whatever modding you will have to do.

It isn't always needed, especially if there are screws, but if not, this is deffinatly your tool for the job

I love my dremel.
A metal grinder works fine too.
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Post by MidnightObsidian » Wed Dec 04, 2002 12:52 am

As far as solder goes, you want the thinnest kind you can find (.5mm to 1mm or so), and you must get rosin core. Clear or standard rosin doesn't matter. If you get acid core, however, you'll be dealing with some fuXX0red electronics. Also, get the thinnest point you can find for your soldering gun. The tip I have comes out to a flat line... it's kind of hard to explain. You should know what it is when you see it. It's probably the best tip for the work you'll be doing. If the package of the soldering gun gives you its approximate temperature, you'll want somewhere between 300 to 375 degrees celcius.

If you can afford it, get an automatically range-sensing multimeter. You have no idea how much easier that'll make things. Make sure that it has an easy-to-find fuse; the one I have was a complete bitch to replace.

If you're painting, have 220-grit sandpaper for roughing the thing up and 600-grit for smoothing it to a glassy finish. Most people don't use the 600-grit to finish it up, but it makes all of the difference in the world, IMO.

Finally, always keep some high-gauge, rubber-insulated, single-strand (not threaded) wire around. You'll need it. A lot of it.

If I think of anything more, I'll post it. BTW, I'm going to suggest a link in the FAQ thread. Too bad I don't have mod rights anymore, or I'd just add it... >= \
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Post by No Name » Wed Dec 04, 2002 11:25 am

MidnightObsidian wrote:Finally, always keep some high-gauge, rubber-insulated, single-strand (not threaded) wire around. You'll need it. A lot of it.
I just use either: Cat5 Networking Cable, or cable from the intercom system that we used to have. I have bags and bags of it in my closet.
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Post by MidnightObsidian » Wed Dec 04, 2002 7:30 pm

TheGatesofBill wrote:
MidnightObsidian wrote:Finally, always keep some high-gauge, rubber-insulated, single-strand (not threaded) wire around. You'll need it. A lot of it.
I just use either: Cat5 Networking Cable, or cable from the intercom system that we used to have. I have bags and bags of it in my closet.
Yeah, Cat5 and telephone wiring works very well (I believe it's Cat4?)
Last edited by MidnightObsidian on Thu Dec 05, 2002 10:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Synlor » Wed Dec 04, 2002 8:51 pm

MidnightObsidian wrote:If I think of anything more, I'll post it. BTW, I'm going to suggest a link in the FAQ thread. Too bad I don't have mod rights anymore, or I'd just add it... >= \
I think this is worth a sticky.
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Post by ninja » Thu Dec 05, 2002 9:04 am

Cat 4 is telephone wire.
Cat5 is network cable wire.
Delete my posting account.

Thanks.
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Post by MidnightObsidian » Thu Dec 05, 2002 10:24 am

ninja wrote:Cat 4 is telephone wire.
Cat5 is network cable wire.
That's what I thought. Thanks for confirming! >= )
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bizzle

Post by bizzle » Thu Dec 05, 2002 11:04 am

i just slice open a vga or serial cable, and its got tons of thin wire in it, i use it for everything.
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Thin Wire

Post by chaostic_2k1 » Sat Dec 07, 2002 6:10 pm

I use bell wire, you know that wire that the phone comany uses for its apartment building distribution blocks. It's the right gauge and is insulatied.
-B4K4 :death:
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