View Full Version : DC CD tray thinger
December 11th, 2005, 13:40
Yeah...I was wondering, has anyone seen/done/heard of a Dreamcast being modded so that it has a CD tray instead of a flip lid? (Like the PS2)
I have a spare Dreamcast...so like...i'd like to try out adding a front loading CD tray to it. I have a broken PS2 and 3 crappy CD Drives I can rob parts from, but I realised I would have to clear some space in the case just to make it fit. Possibly even re-design the case.
Anyway, yeah, if someone could point me in the right direction, that would be sexy.
December 12th, 2005, 10:27
it's not an easy mod, you will definately need to redesign the case. You have two options: use a long FFC to connect the laser and extend the other wires, or use an IDE cable to extend the entire GD-ROM assemblies connection to the mobo, the second method allows you to have an external GD-ROM so you could keep the DC case the same.
That's the easy bit, the hardest bit is making a mechanism that works well enough to be reliable, when i did this i hacked a CD-ROM drive apart and fitted the DC laser assembly inside mounted on the old laser housing. This didnt work very well, i would recommend finding a CD-ROM with a laser assemblt that would work with the DC, they are quite common as the DC laser is a standard CD laser, only the circuitry is specific to Dreamcast.
If you do try this post the results.
December 12th, 2005, 18:29
Yeah, I figured the drive mechanism part would be difficult...
I'll look through the CD drives I have and see which one would be the best candidate to use.
I'll be back with progress. (I hope)
March 11th, 2006, 10:32
Eeep >_< I forgot about this for so long.
I found a good old 4x CD Drive which was excellent to use, but I accidentally threw some parts of it away, so that one became un-useable =\
Recently I found a new CD Drive which I think will be pretty good to use. Did you say I can just use the laser already in the drive rather than swapping it with a DC GD ROM laser? (...that'd make it a whole lot easier)
Also, i'm a bit of a n00b when it comes to electronics (I usually ask my dad), but the spindle motor (bit where the cd's are mounted onto) has a ribbon cable coming out of it with 11 (I think) pins. ...I need this to be 2...so I can connect it to the GD ROM mainboard...any idea on how i'd manage that?
Another thing...I need to make some kind of circuit, or rob one from somewhere else so that when you press a button the CD Drive opens and closes.
I think i'm getting in way over my head :( ...but it's still a mod I wanna have a go at :P
March 12th, 2006, 19:53
This is a rather hard mod to attempt, I belive that you would have to use all dreamcast parts as in the spindle motor and the lens in most cases. A much simpler design would be to have the entire unit come out like the dev units.
It would look like this:
March 12th, 2006, 23:31
Why would I need to use the spindle? I can understand the lens...but, like ptr.exe the laser in a GD-ROM unit is a cheap, standard CD-ROM laser. I think all they do is slow the actual drive down to fool the DC into thinking it's reading CD's so in effect, all I would really need to keep is the original GD-ROM board (or so i'm assuming).
The drive I plan on using doesn't allow me to switch the spindle motor to the DC one anyway. The one in this CD drive is some retarded thing with a ribbon cable coming out that has 6 pins...and it's a sealed unit so I can't take it apart.
Gotta find some way to get 6 pins down to 2...(which I hope is easy).
One other thing I gotta figure out...how to make an open and close circuit for the drive. I tried following where the switches go to on the CD-ROM board but they go off one board through some wires connecting two boards together and then disappear to a place that I can't see =\
Once I have that done i'll start trying to mount it onto the DC itself. And I did think of doing it like the Dev Kits, but i'd much rather do it like this ;)
If worst comes to worst, i'll do it like the Dev Kits :p
March 13th, 2006, 00:47
Well like you said you need to get 6 pins down to 2? The only way I can think to do this is you could probally test each wire randomly with a nine volt battery to see what part spins. Then just observing my dreamcast I see the red and black wires control the motor that holds the disc and the two white wires move the lens back and forth (4 wires). I think that all you need you do is find which wires do the same on the cd-rom. The hard part is to get the entire GD unit to "bob" down when the tray opens and then to "bob" back up when the tray closes, this has to be done with enough percision so as the spindle that holds the disc always connects with the hole on the cd. You would need a small fixed object above the cd-rom to hold the cd and allow the spindle to pop into the hole, you should be able to recycle the one off the cd-rom (It looks like a small wheel that spins freely), you need it at the exact spot so it holds the cd while the spindle pops in. I have no clue how you plan to get the GD-ROM to "bob" up and down.
March 13th, 2006, 11:09
Oh, getting it to "bob" up and down is easy. The drive itself sorts this out, it has a mechanism, that when the motor for opening the drive spins up a plate is pushed to the left, this has a channel engraved into it which points diagonally downwards. The part where the laser is housed has this pin type thing sticking out which sits in the groove and so, when the plate moves across this bit also moves down, allowing the disc media to be loaded correctly.
Yeah, i'll try that with the 6 pin thing...and I also need to get this damn open/close circuit sorted =\
The drive is going to be a bit useless if I have to connect a battery one way and then flip it round again to open and close it...
March 13th, 2006, 20:29
As for open/close if you cant find the part of the cd-rom that does it and be able to isolate you may be stuck with a dreamcast that acts like a laptop cdrom (auto-open/manual-close), and you likely would have to hold the button while the drive opens too...
If you plan on fitting the laser into this bob up/down part then you will likely be forced to find another ribbon cable thats longer, If you were to attempt it with a normal size ribbon it would likely break where it rubs against the gd-roms sheet metal casing.
March 13th, 2006, 22:06
Shit...well i'm hoping it doesn't come to that. I plan, at all costs to have an open/close system...and i'll rip apart every cd drive I have to get it working >_<
March 14th, 2006, 02:11
I have been thinking about modding a dreamcast to load a cd like a car CD player, I think it would look sexy... Problem is I dont want to ruin my nice car cd player. I will probally buy a broke one as long as the loading part works.
March 14th, 2006, 17:33
Thats an awesome idea, I personally think it would look damn awesome :p
But for now i'm sticking with a CD Tray.
March 14th, 2006, 19:58
The lasers are unlikely to be compatible, but it's a possibility.
The spindle motor is really unlikely to work, the DC needs to be able to adjust the speed the disc spins at, a differant motor would cause problems. That one had 11 pins because it uses a controller that is not integrated into the motor housing.
Use the original DC laser and motor.
March 14th, 2006, 20:42
I belive he said he was using the DC lens but he couldnt remove the spindle because it was sealed. Id just break the seal at the spot where it was first sealed using a old soldering pen then if the dc motor is the same size and slip it in, then melt the seal back so it holds the motor well.
March 14th, 2006, 23:14
I'm going to have to find a place to obtain some old CD drives that I can use to butcher parts from, I don't think this one will work too great after all =\
Anyone know of a way to make an open/close circuit? It's a bitch to isolate the one on this board, but for now i'll try and get it working with the whole thing.
March 14th, 2006, 23:26
I havent seen any cd-roms with the open/close part anywhere but the mainboard, I think it would be too complicated to make too... You would have to ask someone else who has done this...
April 8th, 2006, 09:20
How's the drive coming along?? I am looking to do this also, and was excited to see this post. I'm pretty much a novice when it comes to electronics, so if you guys have put together any tutorials / instructions.... Well, I'm looking forward to seeing how the project comes out. You will be posting pictures, right? Thanks.
April 10th, 2006, 21:15
I think this mod has been aborted until a drive can be found that has seperate open/close circuits and also seperate circuits that make the lens bob up and down or even a drive with a small enough mainboard.
April 15th, 2006, 15:34
I havn't aborted this at all (yet) :P
It's just recently "real life" syndrome has been catching up with me leaving me not much time to do anything =\
I think I could get it working with the parts I have now, but this CD ROM Drive is a bit...well, I found it easier to work with older drives than this one, so I gotta go rob parts from any old PC's I can get my hands on.
Regardless i'll still make an attempt with this, see what I can get, but I also wanna get a spare DC too, so if I bust this one, it's not all over.
If I get any progress I shall post images.
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