Where great old Macs live again!

My dog ate my Mac. A meteor landed on my house. I was dead at the time... Or maybe I am just a huge procrastinator. Yes, my Retro Challenge project still lay in a state of unfinishedatudeness. Legless and not yellow, my little plastic pal looks at me with sad mac eyes. I have all the pieces needed to complete the cosmetic transformation from Mac Plus to Banana Jr. Some how the time slipped away (get it, banana - banana peel - slipped! Ha, it is to laugh)
I did get as far as taking apart the two keyboards to make my Mac Plus Extended keyboard/iMac keyboard hybrid only to be stopped by a little membrane ribbon connector.

I'm still not sure if there is anything I can do about it. I plan to do the rest of the case modifications then come back to the keyboard last. At least I'll be able to use the computer then.

Views: 159

Comment by sunder on August 10, 2008 at 12:26pm
Hey John,

Sorry to hear about the road block. Hope this helps.

So those clear ribbon flex cables are very very very annoying to work on, but not impossible.
I'd suggest using very small scissors or better yet an Xacto-Knife(tm) to separate the leads - where you can. (This will work for single layer ribbons, while I've never seen multi layer ribbons, it's not impossible that they'll exist in the future.)

Once the individual leads are separated, you'll need to scrape some of the clear plastic off to allow access to the metal conductor, and then you can solder wires onto these. You might be able to use a soldering iron to melt off the plastic, but I preferred using the Xacto knife to carefully scrape off enough plastic to expose the metal wires, then soldered new wires onto them.

Be very careful in your cutting, as it's very easy to damage these.

I've worked with these before while trying to fix a Tadpole SPARCBook. see: specifically and

So looking at your specific ribbon connector, I count 18 pins. So what you could do is to use 3 runs of CAT 5 ethernet cable. I would made a cut about 2 or 3 inches away on both ends of the plug, separate the individual wires, solder them onto the CAT 5 cables (make sure that you use a Voltmeter to check for short-circuits, broken wires, and check all the pins one one end go to the right pins at the other end.)

Once done with all the soldering, I'd use a hot melt glue gun to seal all the solder joints as they're very fragile and you'd want them to stay put.

If you feel this is too much work, email me off-list with some more details of what you'd need and I'll try to build it for you. :-)

Hope this helps.
-- Ray.
Comment by John on August 12, 2008 at 11:17am
Sounds like a great start. I particularly like the idea of using the hot glue gun. I would never have thought of that! Thanks for the tip!
Comment by sunder on August 12, 2008 at 2:26pm
Good luck and let us know how it goes. :-)
Comment by Kathryn on December 13, 2008 at 11:23pm
Then, you will want to slowly separate the axon from the neuron without damaging the myelin sheath.

Wow! Is that like building you own ribbon cable? I would go for the - do it for me - part.


You need to be a member of RetroMacCast to add comments!

Join RetroMacCast



© 2021   Created by James.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service