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Fire Hose to ribbon cable


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#26 marc.hull ONLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 28, 2014 2:51 PM

I am guessing that the desire for this project is to make it easier to move the keyboard around while typing instead of being chained to the desk ?



#27 Ed in SoDak OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 28, 2014 4:23 PM

For me, the thin cable is less cumbersome and also less prone to losing the connection to the console. It lets me place the console at the far right of my desk. You don't gain much mobility since there's still power, monitor and possibly joysticks and a cassette cable that all hang off the console so I still don't move it around very much. It's the weight of the thick cable as much as the large connector box that's nice to get out of the way. For better mobility, I made an extender for a spare TI keyboard and built a nice, compact wood box for it. That can be moved around freely.

Mostly I was curious, since I've seen few others in the system pics I've seen shared here.

-Ed



#28 atrax27407 OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 28, 2014 4:59 PM

The most difficult of the connectors to find is the male 2X22  connector. I once found a bunch of them at a "HamFest" - if they still have those things. You can often find obsolete and discontinued parts at those things. 



#29 marc.hull ONLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 28, 2014 5:25 PM

<snip>

 

 For better mobility, I made an extender for a spare TI keyboard and built a nice, compact wood box for it. That can be moved around freely.

 

<unsnip>

 

 

 

I suspect this is/was/would be the biggest reason for eliminating the big, clunky connection.  A while back Mike invented a PS/2 keyboard adapter that works fairly well.  Basically turns your console into a desktop.  You can type on your lap etc.  Since it all ready exists maybe this might be a better avenue (not withstanding the simple urge to tinker with stuff ;-).....



#30 hloberg OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 28, 2014 7:55 PM

how about this:

http://translate.goo...archBox&prmd=iv

It's in French with Google English translation. He calls it the TI 99/4F. I think adding a F18a video and a slot in the front for a CF7 would make it really cool.


Edited by hloberg, Mon Apr 28, 2014 7:57 PM.


#31 slinkeey OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 10:58 AM

 

The most difficult of the connectors to find is the male 2X22  connector. I once found a bunch of them at a "HamFest" - if they still have those things. You can often find obsolete and discontinued parts at those things.


I think because it is just a PCB, right? just use a double sided PCB with parrallel traces..

#32 atrax27407 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 12:31 PM

These had a crimp style connector to attach directly to a ribbon cable. That is how the original expansion box splitter was constructed. About 12" of ribbon cable with a 44-pin female connector in the middle and one of thses on each end.



#33 Ed in SoDak OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 2:00 PM

I dragged my extender out as a pic is the only way to describe it. There's no need for a female-to-male genger-changer fingerboard as this one has a male fitting on that end. Plus, the terminals are gold-plated. That eliminates 44 connections from the chain compared to the F-to-F cable + finger board.

 

It's just straight ribbon 43 inches long, not even twisted pair like the other one shown in this thread. The thing just works with nary a glitch and is as out of the way as you can get. The entire firehose lays on the floor hidden from view or bumping.

 

The number on the male connector is PF222852L 8715. My google-fu is weak finding something similar in a web search.

-Ed

 

Attached File  TIflex.jpg   78.17KB   3 downloads

 

Attached File  TIflexends.jpg   33.35KB   3 downloads


Edited by Ed in SoDak, Tue Apr 29, 2014 2:24 PM.


#34 hloberg OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 2:21 PM

No buffering, no shielding and it works. Goes to show how TI over thought everything back then.

The fire hose probably cost 10 bucks to built, your cable, a buck fifty. 



#35 Ed in SoDak OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 2:31 PM

It doesn't eliminate the firehose and big box connector/buffer, but it is as simple a solution as you can get to move the hose out of the way!


Edited by Ed in SoDak, Tue Apr 29, 2014 2:32 PM.


#36 acadiel OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 2:36 PM

 

I think because it is just a PCB, right? just use a double sided PCB with parrallel traces..

 

Yep.  Those could be quite easy to make in ExpressPCB.  Just like a double sided set of cartridge fingers. <grin>

 

Speaking of which... I want to make a cartridge connector on the side port one day.  Just need to know which buffer chips I need.  Also want another female "finger" on this connector to bring forth the signals that aren't normally on a cart port (i.e. address lines) so I could make one off boards that might be able to address DSR memory, etc.



#37 Ed in SoDak OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:05 PM

I still maintain the adapterless male end as on my cable is the way to go. If that connector is now unobtainium, then the little PCB finger board is the only alternative other than direct soldering of the ribbon itself to the TI.

 

You could make your own adapter board from a piece of double-sided plated blank board, cut it to fit and just remove the copper in strips to make the gaps between the fingers.

-Ed



#38 arcadeshopper OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:37 PM

I still maintain the adapterless male end as on my cable is the way to go. If that connector is now unobtainium, then the little PCB finger board is the only alternative other than direct soldering of the ribbon itself to the TI.

 

You could make your own adapter board from a piece of double-sided plated blank board, cut it to fit and just remove the copper in strips to make the gaps between the fingers.

-Ed

 

Agreed, if only we had that connector.. the pcb shoved in a female connector is the weaksauce of the iec cables



#39 hloberg OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 5:04 PM

It doesn't eliminate the firehose and big box connector/buffer, but it is as simple a solution as you can get to move the hose out of the way!

So your wire plugs into the side of the TI99 then the fire hose plugs into that or the other way around?



#40 slinkeey OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 7:23 PM

I still maintain the adapterless male end as on my cable is the way to go. If that connector is now unobtainium, then the little PCB finger board is the only alternative other than direct soldering of the ribbon itself to the TI.

 

You could make your own adapter board from a piece of double-sided plated blank board, cut it to fit and just remove the copper in strips to make the gaps between the fingers.

-Ed

 

The TI-99/4A has the male end.. It's basically just part of the motherboard.


Edited by slinkeey, Tue Apr 29, 2014 7:23 PM.


#41 Ed in SoDak OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 10:06 PM

So your wire plugs into the side of the TI99 then the fire hose plugs into that or the other way around?

Yup, just like an extension cord with 44 wires instead of two. Female end of it to the TI, male end to the fire hose. 43 inches of freedom between them.

 

 

The TI-99/4A has the male end.. It's basically just part of the motherboard.

The advantage to this apparently obsolete connector is there's no need for the additional fingerboard and it's 44 added traces, made of either unplated copper or with a solder coating. Neither of which is good for a long-term reliable friction-fit connection.

 

I'd bet there is some side-play to this fingerboard, increasing the chance of it being misaligned, just like a flaky cartridge port. I have to insert my SXB cart "just right" or my TI doesn't like it. I know that can also be due to the felt cartridge port wiper gathering crud over time, but, having no indexing or key arrangement, a flat card-edge also has a lot of "side-play" as to precisely where it inserts. The connector on my cable looks much more like a positive alignment is assured. Being gold-plated means no oxidation over time. What's not to love?

 

Just the apparent disappearance of this specific style of connector from modern sources stops us in our tracks from replicating it, is all. :_(

Heck, the only current-production 44-conductor stuff I could find were all pin-type socket header connectors for internal IDE drives. I don't even know what you'd call this thing in modern nomenclature to do a better search for it.

 

A maker stamp of "PCD" was molded into the crimp portion, if that helps anyone refine a search. My google-fu is still not turning up anything similar. I never liked gender-changer boards, always a source of suspicion and finger-pointing (pun intended) when something quits working. That impression goes back to my Timex TS-1000 and it's abominable 16k memory pack. I ended up soldering that RAM pack permanently to the board, problem solved!

 

I'm enjoying all the comments and brainstorming to address the issue from a modern perspective, particularly the ethernet idea. My initial impression of it was I thought this $15 cable was the greatest "Why didn't TI do it like this?" thing for the TI, so why don't I see any "in the wild" these days? I guess now we know.

 

Tursi's method of soldering one end of the cable to the Speech box is great. Why not take that a step further and solder the far end of the ribbon directly to the firehose internally or at least to one end of the adapter finger board. That should be at least as reliable as mine has been over 24 or so years of near-continuous connection.


Edited by Ed in SoDak, Tue Apr 29, 2014 10:24 PM.


#42 Ed in SoDak OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 29, 2014 10:43 PM

I'll bet if any older TI systems that had this cable, it was removed when the system was taken down or all the "old computer stuff" was moved out to the yard for the "estate" sale. It ended up in a box of misc cables for $1.00, which either wnt unsold, got mistracked or landfilled as nobody knew its purpose. The company had to sell more than just the two my dad and I owned. Or maybe it was a marketing dud in the maelstrom of TI stuff that was sold back then and that's why they're no longer around?

 

Probably not a huge  number of TI PEB owners at its peak, even if you saturated the market. This example is so well made, it's hard to believe it was ordered up specifically for this low-cost item. TI was pretty good at using relatively common PC-type or "off-the-shelf" connectors. DIN- and DB-type stuff still made today. So why this vacuum for one simple, reliable connector instead of a kludge?

 

-Ed



#43 Ksarul OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 30, 2014 7:41 PM

I could always do a quick layout for a male side-port connector with a box header to snap a cable into. I could even do one with a bend if that would be useful. This is actually easy to do because I already have a 50-pin variant I did for the 99/8 side connector a few years ago.



#44 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 1, 2014 3:29 PM

One guys solution to the edge card connector appears to be the 'MODIFY & MELT' routine....

 

gallery_35324_1027_918179.jpg

 

(Click on image to enlarge)



#45 acadiel OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 1, 2014 5:22 PM

My nanoPEB isn't that way. Strange. I did get the actual part number used by him for the 44 pin female connector.

#46 hloberg OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 1, 2014 5:49 PM

My nanoPEB isn't that way. Strange. I did get the actual part number used by him for the 44 pin female connector.

My CF7+ doesn't look like that either. It's nice a clean.



#47 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 1, 2014 5:59 PM

Well crud, I guess I did not zoom up tight enough.  I was not expecting anyone to figure out what the device was.  My bad.  Sorry.  I've had three of those gadgets and I remember at least two of them being that way.   Now I'm *REALLY* curious to see if anybody elses is like that!



#48 acadiel OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 1, 2014 6:23 PM

Well crud, I guess I did not zoom up tight enough.  I was not expecting anyone to figure out what the device was.  My bad.  Sorry.  I've had three of those gadgets and I remember at least two of them being that way.   Now I'm *REALLY* curious to see if anybody elses is like that!


You think that's bad? Look at the people making Amiga DB23 female plugs by hacking off two pins of a DB25. Now, that is a hack! :)

#49 OLD CS1 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 1, 2014 6:24 PM

You think that's bad? Look at the people making Amiga DB23 female plugs by hacking off two pins of a DB25. Now, that is a hack! :)

 

::grumble::



#50 Lee Stewart OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 1, 2014 7:10 PM

Well crud, I guess I did not zoom up tight enough.  I was not expecting anyone to figure out what the device was.  My bad.  Sorry.  I've had three of those gadgets and I remember at least two of them being that way.   Now I'm *REALLY* curious to see if anybody elses is like that!

 

Mine is exactly like that.  Mine is not melted but, rather, filled with a kind of plastic cement.  Epoxy?  It works just fine, however.

 

...lee






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