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Idea:External Atari ST drive transformed to 8-bit (XF551 internals)

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Okay, I believe I have completed a working board.

Just to be clear:

XF551 circuitry on a SF314/SF354 case compatible pcb.
Supports PC industry standard 3.5" 720KB floppy drives (Some drives may need additional modification)
Supports all SF314 drives and most SF354 drives (those with single data cable connection)
Uses original SF314/SF354 case
Uses original SF314/SF354 Dual Voltage Power Supply Brick with female DIN5 connector
Uses custom made SIO cables to connect to Atari 8bit computers
Additional features include support for XF551 Control Board Bundle for front panel control of 2in1 OS, drive id selection, reset, and track display. (Major front case mod needed for these features)
One minor case mod necessary for manual drive id selection without taking off lid to make a change.

You will need the original SF314/SF354 pcb as some parts will need to be salvaged. You will also need some chips normally found in an XF551 pcb, although they can usually be purchased on Ebay. I am not using most other XF551 original non-chip parts though. Please refer to the BOM for specific part information. Board has all through hole parts soldering. No SMD. Some de-soldering of original SF314/354 parts are necessary. Possible some XF551 chip de-soldering will be necessary as well.

I will be providing a bare board only, with BOM and instructions on how to assemble the board and the custom SIO cables. I believe tf_hh will also be willing to offer the same for European orders.

At this time I will be doing an pre-order for the first production run. I need ten paid board orders to do the run.

Time line is a little fuzzy. Right now is the Chinese Holiday and some pcb houses are shut down for two weeks. Those that aren't are under heavy work load, so I can't definitively say exactly how long it will take. Hopefully not more than two to three weeks to ship out the boards.

Cost will be $15.00 per board plus flat rate shipping of $8.00 in the US. Please order on my website. Contact tf_hh for European orders. BOM is attached

 

First a parts diagram of the board:

 

SF551102.jpg

 

Here is as fully populated a 3d representation of the board:

 

SF55100.jpg

SF55101.jpg

SF551.xls

Edited by Dropcheck
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Great news!

 

Does that mean that SF354s with two I/O connectors cannot be used or is that some internal data cable?

 

 

 

Gesendet von iPhone mit Tapatalk

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Full Disclosure:

 

I want to be sure that you are aware that because I am not using the original Atari ST DIN14 connectors for the SIO input, the CUI connectors I will be using are not going to be a perfect fit for the round data openings on the top case rear. There will be some 'daylight' at the top of the connectors. Here's a picture of the fit. Understand this is a earlier version of the board and the location is not as exact as the production board will be.

 

DSC_3127.jpg

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Hello Lenore

 

I'm assuming you're not using SIO-connectors because there was/is no way they will fit? ( The holes in the case could probably be enlarged, but ... )

 

Sincerely

 

Mathy (just curious, as always) (and a pain in the neck, I know)

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Hello Lenore

 

I'm assuming you're not using SIO-connectors because there was/is no way they will fit? ( The holes in the case could probably be enlarged, but ... )

 

Sincerely

 

Mathy (just curious, as always) (and a pain in the neck, I know)

 

Between having to do heavy mod to the case and no room on the board and being so hard to find in numbers........ :( ;-)

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Maybe you can show us a video...? Sorry I am so excited that I cannot wait to see it in action.

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Hello Lenore

 

 

Between having to do heavy mod to the case and no room on the board and being so hard to find in numbers........ :( ;-)

 

I guess that means we have to find a way to reproduce the SIO-connectors...

 

Sincerely

 

Mathy

 

PS to all reading this, please do not suggest 3d-printing solutions! And don't ask why not!!!

Edited by Mathy

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Hello Lenore

 

 

I guess that means we have to find a way to reproduce the SIO-connectors...

 

Sincerely

 

Mathy

 

PS to all reading this, please do not suggest 3d-printing solutions! And don't ask why not!!!

 

A dead 410 cassette deck would be an ideal candidate to donate its SIO cable to the cause.

Solder up a DIN-14 on the other end, and you're done.

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The din 13p I guess it is... Ok that cable male connector is very difficult to find... So that explain the change.

You can choose not to put the connector and just solder half SIO cable to the PCB, similar to xf351, or 410 cassette recorder.

But anyway, you can still put this 3.5 drive in the middle of the SIO chain., Since there are two I/O connectors

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Maybe you can show us a video...? Sorry I am so excited that I cannot wait to see it in action.

 

I should have made photos of the last testing phase, but a couple of severe problems with the board left me so pissed off about it that documentation was the last thing on my mind. The cobbled together fixes were almost dangerous to be around. :-o

 

I've already robbed parts from the board for another XF551 project I'm working on because parts money is so tight. Between two beta board orders, international shipping costs and parts cost, I've spent about $100. I have two USA contributors who will receive a partially completed board for their assistance. That also has to get added to the cost of the project and to date no paid orders. I'm not complaining, just stating the unfortunate reality of hobby electronics. :(

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Hello Lenore

 

 

I guess that means we have to find a way to reproduce the SIO-connectors...

 

Sincerely

 

Mathy

 

PS to all reading this, please do not suggest 3d-printing solutions! And don't ask why not!!!

 

 

Mathy,

 

SIO connection will be from two customized SIO to CUI SD-130 plug cables. Take one long SIO cable and cut it in the middle. Take two CUI SD-130 plugs and wire one to each of the cut ends per the assembly instructions and you have all you need to put this where ever in the SIO daisy chain ;-)

 

Like Best Electronics CA015900-01 6ft SIO F-F I/O Cable

Edited by Dropcheck
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Mathy,

 

Here's what it would look like with normal SIO connectors:

 

wSIOConnectors.jpg

 

Even if you replace one SIO connector for a pigtail soldered in connection, now you have to make a major cut on the back of the case to fit the SIO connector and you have a huge hole for the pigtail entry. The original ST data connectors would have been perfect, except that they are not easily found and you still would have had to make a custom cable using the ST data cable and 8bit SIO cables. I went with the design that caused the least case mod possible.

 

Atari was famous for reusing parts in multiple devices, that is just good manufacturing design, but they didn't necessarily design for interoperability between two very different computer systems. :(

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Hello Lenore

 

Thanks for that last picture. Even if we'd have some kind of double SIO-connector (two SIO-connectors moulded together as one piece, eliminating two of the four screw holes), it wouldn't fit.

 

Hmm, I seemed to remember that Atari's XF351 had two SIO connectors, but Google remembers otherwise (one SIO connector, one SIO cable).

 

Sincerely

 

Mathy

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Okay, I knew I wouldn't sell a ton of these boards, but the interest seemed to be there to sell some. Not one sold yet. I guess I was wrong. :(

 

That's okay. I'll live. On to other projects..... :)

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Sorry to hear that. It is a great idea and I would love one, but I passed because it is a bare board. I would rather buy fully populated and complete projects, just my opinion.

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I would immediately buy 2, except I simply don't have the skills to finish the board off. Maybe pass it to Lotharek. He has been great about taking designs and producing them on demand.

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The only problem with having Lotharek manufacture these would be the nearly $20 to ship for US locations,and I doubt he would be willing to pay royalties or a licensing fee for the design to Dropcheck.

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I am also too bad with the soldering iron, but the excitement of getting something very, very close to the mythical xf351 was just enough to even try to fit the 1088XEL floppy board to the ST floppy case (that's how this topic started). But this is my opinion, I really struggle with the iron, and I get frustrated, but I think, at least for me, is part of hobby...

I was thinking in try to reproduce the XE styled badge (just by laser printing or something else simple like covering the blue "Atari" with a red "Atari") to make it even more similar to the xf351, maybe call it XF354 or XF314.

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Okay, I knew I wouldn't sell a ton of these boards, but the interest seemed to be there to sell some. Not one sold yet. I guess I was wrong. :(

I am highly interested, great work!

but since I am from Europe I am trying to get it via Jürgen (tfhh)

Not sure if he is already offering the board, but I have asked...

 

Cheers

Michael

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I’ll buy a pair shortly. I don’t have any SFs to sacrifice. I Never could find those things cheap enough when collecting years ago.

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Okay, I knew I wouldn't sell a ton of these boards, but the interest seemed to be there to sell some. Not one sold yet. I guess I was wrong. :(

 

That's okay. I'll live. On to other projects..... :)

I had no idea they were available yet. I just added one to my cart, and logged in to my account, proceeded to checkout, but the checkout has added the last item I already purchased from you to my order. I don't know why and I don't know how to get rid of it! So...you need to fix something before I can purchase... :?

 

Never mind, I figured out I had to go into my account and get rid of the extra part, that I couldn't do it from checkout...which most places allow you to add to or subtract from at checkout...maybe something it would be worth while to add? But why was a previous purchase still in my cart?

 

Anywho, it's all good. Though I too would have preferred a populated board...now I have to go searching for an ST SF drive and the components needed from an XF551, neither of which I own or care to buy since I'm making my own custom case to match my XL peripherals. I know it would be a lot more expense for you, which is why you don't offer it populated. But I'm not sure if I'll be able to source it all myself either, without buying two complete drives I don't want or need (except for the needed components of course). But I went ahead and purchased it, just to support your continued efforts, even if I end up not using it for a while, if ever due to these above reasons. :|

 

The 1090XLR kit excites me too, but I'll wait and think about it, for the same reasons as above; not knowing if I'll ever be able to source all the parts needed to build it...

Edited by Gunstar

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I had no idea they were available yet. I just added one to my cart, and logged in to my account, proceeded to checkout, but the checkout has added the last item I already purchased from you to my order. I don't know why and I don't know how to get rid of it! So...you need to fix something before I can purchase... :?

 

Never mind, I figured out I had to go into my account and get rid of the extra part, that I couldn't do it from checkout...which most places allow you to add to or subtract from at checkout...maybe something it would be worth while to add? But why was a previous purchase still in my cart?

 

I'm sorry you had some problems with the checkout. Usually something like that happens due to an abandoned cart situation. I'll check to see if an option to back up to the cart review page can be added.

 

FYI: Not exactly a backup option. Instead I have added a plugin that should allow you to edit the cart on the checkout page. Should help.

Edited by Dropcheck
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I would immediately buy 2, except I simply don't have the skills to finish the board off. Maybe pass it to Lotharek. He has been great about taking designs and producing them on demand.

 

I understand you are a user, not someone who takes a bare pcb board and builds a completed assembly. But, I doubt Lotharek has the ability to do so either. :(

 

I wish twenty year old parts that are no longer manufactured are cheap and easy to find. I wish cases designed for one computer system were easy to modify and use for another. Unfortunately that isn't the case. It's all relative. It's relatively easy to design for a specific case if you accept this or that limitation. It's relatively cheap and easy to find parts that are required, if you are willing to pay enough or look long enough.

 

I simply cannot offer a fully populated pcb. Perhaps there are some here who can assemble one for you, if you provide the parts. :)

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