Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Includes but not limited to: SNES, Genesis, Sega CD, PlayStation 1, Nintendo 64, Dreamcast, Game Gear and I guess the Virtual Boy.

Moderator: Moderators

User avatar
Metallica Man X
Portablizer Extraordinaire
Posts: 1437
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2005 1:14 pm
Location: A very anti-metal place...WI...
Contact:

Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by Metallica Man X » Sat Oct 20, 2012 2:22 am

Ok, so I'm finally getting this darn build thread up.....This should be lengthy........

Oh, and for those who don't know, the DC's original development name (also the name written on its mobo) is Katana (a samurai sword). I figured it'd be appropriate if I were to name this smaller portable version "Kodachi", which is the Japanese name for a short sword. Though, the final projekt name on the portable will probably just be Dreamcast Portable haha.

SO here we go!

A perfectly good Dreamcast.....that I aquired for free from a friend of mine who got it for free in a junk bag...

Image

Which some quick measurements, I found that with only a few small trimmings, I could fit the DC into the mold I used for my NESp commission!
SO began the chopping.....

Image
POOF! Goodbye useless expansion port thingy!
Image

Of course, we can't build a portable without some serious cutting action!!!
Image

The failed case parts that were for the NESp commission made a decent screen case for a while....but now...work much better for sizing up the Dreamcast's innards to the casing.
Image
Shaved the DC board and heatsink down, and it all fit quite nicely!
Image

I also did some meddling around with the controller using the junk front plate for the controller stuff. FOr this attempt, I decided to try using the original controller parts. This was mostly to make things easier for the analog stick part, and also to make some decent mounting points for the controller boards.
Image

The stuff fit all right, but it was doomed to fail (more on that in a few).


Next on the list was getting the totally awesome screen hardwired to the DC board...
Image

If you look closely, you'll see the switch I attached to allow for switchable VGA mode. This is important for the portable since not all DC games support VGA mode for some silly reason. Using the switch requires the system to be off before you change it up though, you can't change modes on the fly unfortunately.
Image



Next item up for bids was the power supply. Picked me up one of those little Pico PSUs for the job. Now, we all know the DC will happily run on less than 12 volts, however the fancy screen absolutely refuses to run on anything less than that. I tried a few things, but it' s just not happening. Not a big deal though, as the Pico PSU was quite cheap (all of 20 bucks ;) ) and is a great compact power supply for the whole shabang.
Image

And now for the test firing...stuck in a game I don't care about to make sure it was all alive, which it was...darn my camera has a fast shutter speed--that disk was spinning pretty fast when I snapped the photo haha.
Image


SO the next item on the list was getting a functional controller.
Image
The plan was to save myself a few bucks and make use of my dead controllers that I had just sitting around plus one fully working controller. This proved to be made of fail and aids as none of the buttons other than start and the d-pad actually worked. I thought for sure the ABXY buttons would work, but those failed too for whatever reason :?

So that went out the window, and I picked up a pair of these guys:
Image

I find it very interesting how the 3rd party Madcatz controller is actually, in my opinion, way superior to the official Sega controller :lol:

Then commenced the shredding. Removed the L and R triggers, which was so many kinds of easy when compared to the official controller. They will also be significantly easier to install in the portable over the official parts too.
Image
Image

Then, phase 3: Shredding the original controller for attaching.
Image
Image
Image

As can be seen above, the new controller parts fit quite happily within the limits of the original holes, which are both well within limit of the case itself. As a nice bonus, I can keep the C and Z buttons too! Yeah, they're just L and R, but they're sooooooo much nicer to use than the triggers when rocking games like Street Fighter III and Marvel Vs Capcom...

Since there were no usable screw posts on the D-pad/analog stick side to mount the controller board to, I cut up some of the other screw posts and attached them with some plastic weld. The connection is rock solid, and holds the controller board nicely :)
Image

So then began the extension process to a still intact working controller. Yeah, I could've cut it down, but I'm feeling a bit paranoid bout these controllers right now, and according to my measurements, there's more than enough room for a complete controller in the case anyway.
Image

After a successful test of the above board extensions, the next step was extending the DC's controller board, and hardwiring the cut up controller to it. Yes, I intend to incorporate the players 2 thru 4 ports ;)
Image
Image

...and of course, extending the VMU port. I was considering going with a fully internal VMU, but found the idea to be silly since I have different VMUs for different things. This will work fine, and save me some room anyway.
Image


All right, that should bring us all up do date on this guy....Getting ready to make the case right now. Need to hit up the local hardware store tomorrow to pick up some more window sealer foam stuff for my vac table. The stuff I have on it is so worn out at this point that it just doesn't work anymore..which I found out the hard way when I tried to form some plastic and wound up with it not pulling down at all :wtf:

I'm hoping to get the case built up and ready for paint by Monday...but as with all plans of this sort, that's probably not gonna happen :roll:

It'll be done soon enough though...soon enough to start and finish my next, much smaller, projekt before MGC ;)
Image
The answer to 1984 is 1776!
"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." - Plato

User avatar
Ashen
Posts: 191
Joined: Fri May 09, 2008 8:53 am
Location: PA

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by Ashen » Sat Oct 20, 2012 6:29 am

This looks sweet so far man, those screens are awesome. Some (close to)HD DC in the palm of your hands! :D
ImageImageImageImageImageImage

User avatar
public-pervert
Posts: 14
Joined: Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:01 pm

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by public-pervert » Mon Oct 22, 2012 7:23 am

It's been a while that I don't see a exciting worklog like that!

Keep up the good work! :D

User avatar
Metallica Man X
Portablizer Extraordinaire
Posts: 1437
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2005 1:14 pm
Location: A very anti-metal place...WI...
Contact:

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by Metallica Man X » Mon Oct 22, 2012 11:16 am

Update time!

Well, I got my much needed equipment for the vac table...and the work commenced that night for once :)

Got my case halves pulled out and cut down to um...near perfection. The case isn't all that great since it wasn't really designed to be used like this, but it works good enough :lol:
Image
Image

Just to be safe, I set up an extra sheet of plastic for some test cuts...got myself a nice set of templates to just trace onto the case to make solid holes that don't fail too much...
Image

Then..onto actually making some holes.

First up, was the front of the case. Since the speaker hole spot looked so good on the Neutron projekt, I decided to go ahead and make the speaker holes on this guy the same way. Did those first, then made the screen hole and lastly the controller holes.
Image
Image

Aaaaah....it all fits perfectly 8)
Image


The case rear was next on the chopping block...all those test cuts paid off. The Disk drive fits nice and snug, and looks very nice in there :)
Image

Last holes made were the L&R Trigger holes. Was a bit iffy with the left trigger since the disk drive was squeezed so close to it, but although tight, it will fit just fine...
Image


...And that's it for now. As I had figured, nowhere near finished by today haha. But that's the golden rule of portablizing....take whatever amount of time you think you can do it in, then triple it. But, if all goes well, this should be totally finished within the week :)
Image
The answer to 1984 is 1776!
"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." - Plato

wallydawg
Senior Member
Posts: 2233
Joined: Mon Apr 05, 2004 11:28 am
Location: Sorry Illinois
Contact:

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by wallydawg » Mon Oct 22, 2012 12:28 pm

Lorne you are a portablizing machine!
Image

User avatar
evilteddy
Portablizer
Posts: 423
Joined: Tue Mar 25, 2008 2:11 am
360 GamerTag: Kirren of Smeg
Steam ID: kizzinator
Location: Newcastle, Australia

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by evilteddy » Mon Oct 22, 2012 6:48 pm

Damn this is pretty.

User avatar
Metallica Man X
Portablizer Extraordinaire
Posts: 1437
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2005 1:14 pm
Location: A very anti-metal place...WI...
Contact:

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by Metallica Man X » Wed Oct 24, 2012 1:53 pm

Update!

Plastic-welded the ABC/XYZ buttons into the case....not sure how this will turn out though. It's nice and solid, and sands down well enough. But I can't shake the feeling that this is going to look terrible once it's painted--even after I sand it down to the limit.
Image

To eat up some time, I started working on the VMU port. I nabbed one of the old DC controller VMU holders and cut it down. This should hold the VMU steady enough.
Image

As for making a hole that's the right shape in the case for the VMU tray...A little sharpie and some pressing down on paper seemed to work out pretty well 8)
Image

Then I cut out the hole...which worked perfectly until...
Image

...I suddenly realised that I made a massive boneheaded mistake...I cut the VMU hole in the wrong half of the case :facepalm:

So I cut another part and plastic welded that into the hole.
With some good sanding and a few licks of paint, this mistake should hopefully vanish enough to not be noticeable.
Image

That's all for now. Time to get ready for work....
Image
The answer to 1984 is 1776!
"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." - Plato

User avatar
Metallica Man X
Portablizer Extraordinaire
Posts: 1437
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2005 1:14 pm
Location: A very anti-metal place...WI...
Contact:

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by Metallica Man X » Fri Oct 26, 2012 6:21 pm

And back to business!

Once the screwed up hole was fully filled in, I decided to work on something else for a bit...so I got the Analog stick/Dpad part plastic welded in..
Image

...and once that was fully hardened, I applied much in the way of some putty type action (JB quick) to level out the front side.
Image

Sanded it down quite a bit...looks like I may need to apply a little more sauce to make it super even.
Image

With some actual progress made, it was time to tackle the VMU spot once again..this time putting it in the right spot :)
Image

Next hurdle.....I had no buttons for my volume and LCD screen input. After digging around in a box of junk, I found some old crappy genesis controller buttons that were collecting dust. I just sanded them down to eliminate the original letters, and then put in my own symbols.
Image

Came out pretty good methinks 8)

Lastly...drilled out the holes for said buttons...
Image

Getting there. Still have a few more holes to make. Might get to those tonight yet. We shall see.....................
Image
The answer to 1984 is 1776!
"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." - Plato

User avatar
Metallica Man X
Portablizer Extraordinaire
Posts: 1437
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2005 1:14 pm
Location: A very anti-metal place...WI...
Contact:

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by Metallica Man X » Sun Oct 28, 2012 3:24 am

Progress! Woot! Though not nearly as fast as I had hoped, I'm still making good time on this XD

Finished up all 3 of the A/V buttons...not too shabby!
Image

Got the hole for the power switch and the VGA/Composite mode switch cut out...
Image

Nextly, the 8 holes for the 8 nuts and 8 bolts cooked up and ready to hold the case together. Not seen are the 4 bars inside the case that connect the bolts and case halves.
Image

Well, I could not find a button in my box of junk buttons that did it for me when it came to choosing a start button, so I decided to make one myself!

Opted to go with a Dreamcast-esque triangular button style...
Image

Image

Surprised myself with how quickly I got that triangular hole made :lol:
Image

Also got the hole made for the cooling fan!
Image
Now with the fan!
Image

Then onto the players 2-4 controller holes...These were pretty easy to lay out since I could just use the faceplate from the Dreamcast as a stencil 8)
Image


Originally, I was planning on putting these on the bottom, but after some thought, I figured it'd be better to have them on top so they won't get in the way when this monster is resting on my lap.




Last thing....
Image
Wait..what is that? A toilet seat?



NOPE!
Image


Yeah, my disk/finger protector! It's actually a remade dreamcast disk cover! I just cut the original lid off the console and reshaped it for my needs. I was thinking about using the original lid, but the dang this was painfully thick and quite heavy for its size. Also, it was just every so slightly too small in diameter to cover up all the important stuff :wtf:

So, I just whipped out the old vac table and pulled some plastic over it and made that little guy. It's a bazillion times lighter, more spacious, and way easier to work with!


I do have a sneaky plan for a hinge system for it...more to come on that later! 8)

That's all for now. Will hopefully get the hinges set up tomorrow evening! Once that's finished, I'll be down to all of 2 holes to drill, one for the headphone jack and one for the power plug...and probably a few extra air holes too...then it'll be off to the paint booth!
Image
The answer to 1984 is 1776!
"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." - Plato

User avatar
Metallica Man X
Portablizer Extraordinaire
Posts: 1437
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2005 1:14 pm
Location: A very anti-metal place...WI...
Contact:

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by Metallica Man X » Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:58 am

And here we go again!

Ok, so first things first....did a little thinking and I decided to file those controller holes out some more. Doing it so the controller plugs actually stick into the case will help keep things from falling apart, and also will keep the controller itself plugged in better.

Image

Next order of business...hmm...what could these possibly be?
Image




Ah! They're for the screen..Up until this point, I've only glued the screens in. This time around, I'm going to clamp the screen to make maintenance easier.
Image

Finally decided on the spots for the power plug and the headphone jack....
Image

After taking a bit of a break from the electronical part, it was high time to finish up the more complicated inside parts.
This mess is what will become the audio amp!
Image

Rather than the usual LM386, this time around I went with a TI chip...stereo with headphone support! A very nice chip overall, as it pretty much only needs a handful of identical capacitors haha.
Image

Lastly, the digital pot...darn thing was a bit of a pain to put together simply because the one I got (the only one in stock at digi-key) was an SMD version.
Image


So now the big stuff for the internals is totally done. I picked up some paint earlier in the day, got some test pieces drying right now to make sure the stuff will work with both the styrene and the controller plastic.

Coming soon (hopefully): A test fire of a semi-built unit 8)
Image
The answer to 1984 is 1776!
"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." - Plato

User avatar
Metallica Man X
Portablizer Extraordinaire
Posts: 1437
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2005 1:14 pm
Location: A very anti-metal place...WI...
Contact:

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by Metallica Man X » Mon Nov 05, 2012 3:09 am

And more progreeeeesss!!!

Finished work on the controller....got the VMU attached and what not now...
Image


Then comes the massive attachment fest. Getting it all hooked up and ready for installation to the case. Gawd it's a wire nightmare :evil:
Image

With the guts fully ready to go for installation, it was time to get some paint on that case.

WIth a test controller part, I found that the paint made the D-pad not work very smoothly when the inner ball thing got paint on it..so I had to tape it here.
Image

Behold! Painted!
Image

I'm really really really hoping that tape won't pull much paint up when I remove it...
Image

I'm up to 4 coats of paint right now but I can still see some dark bits through it. Lame. I'll have to apply some spot coats in those areas to make them disappear better.

Completion is so very near......................................Just need to get the decals printed and applied..................................then stick the guts in.........................and then......................rock some serious DC on the go 8)
Image
The answer to 1984 is 1776!
"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." - Plato

User avatar
evilteddy
Portablizer
Posts: 423
Joined: Tue Mar 25, 2008 2:11 am
360 GamerTag: Kirren of Smeg
Steam ID: kizzinator
Location: Newcastle, Australia

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by evilteddy » Wed Nov 07, 2012 7:06 am

Words cannot describe how much I'm looking forward to seeing this all come together.

User avatar
ModderMan
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Jul 28, 2012 7:03 pm
Location: Australia

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by ModderMan » Thu Nov 08, 2012 5:31 am

Agreed, great build so far!
- ModderMan

lexxion83
Posts: 39
Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2011 8:26 pm

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by lexxion83 » Fri Nov 09, 2012 11:27 am

Dreamcast is a great system. Your build is great too :). What you get when you combine both?

Awesomeness of Dreamcast on the GO.

Great work. Love the work log.

User avatar
Metallica Man X
Portablizer Extraordinaire
Posts: 1437
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2005 1:14 pm
Location: A very anti-metal place...WI...
Contact:

Re: Projekt Kodachi!!! (DC portable)

Post by Metallica Man X » Sat Nov 10, 2012 7:08 am

OK update..no pics tho...

Started assembling the whole shabang finally...and ran into some very annoying issues..case is too thin by about 1/16"...even though I made it 1/4" thicker than what I figured I'd need :wtf: , controller quit working for no apparent reason, yet the VMU still works. Audio amp also decided that it wanted to fail for no good reason too.

Blargh. The bugger is making me mad...As much as I want this thing finished as soon as possible...I think it's about time to shelve it for a little while and start on something else to clear my head lol.
Image
The answer to 1984 is 1776!
"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." - Plato

Post Reply