Posted on June 16, 2003
Test fitting of all major components. I tried several layouts, but this one was the best option.
The addition of the internal Atari interface. I added a genuine Atari SIO socket, so that connections to actual Atari computers could use standard Atari cables.
Test fitting the case halves back together. Most of the case's original support pillars had to be cut out to make room for the parts, so I was going to have to figure out how to re-seal the case with some level of structural integrity.
I decided to mount a set of hinges on the rear of the case, so that the case could open like a clamshell from the front. The front support pillars were intact. To my satisfaction, this combination made for a good solid closure. To improve airflow, I attached a slim CPU fan to the case, blowing straight down on the mobo, just to keep air moving inside the case. The case itself is riddled with ventilation grilles, so I reckoned that ventilation would be adequate. Done.
I still had to figure out how to get a hard drive into this thing. Notebook style or full-size? Well, I had a spare 15 GB full-size drive laying around, and it looked like there was JUST enough space between the power supply and mobo to fit. ...but how to mount it! I thought I might put it on stilts and fold the ribbon cables beneath, but eventually decided that it would be easier and more practical to hang it upside-down from the top case panel (the part that includes the hinged cartridge cover door. I used nylon standoffs to suspend the drive so that it is about an inch below the top cover, but also an inch above the case floor, where the ribbon cables are folded up.
The test fitting was brilliant--everything nestled together like it was deisgned for it--like a jigsaw puzzle. All the while, maintaining good airflow around everything.
I found that those little brass standoffs that come with PC cases (the kind that motherboards screw on to) are perfect for fastening the top cover to the main case. I ran two screws through the back of the top cover and into the brass standoffs. Done.
The Atari 800 Server is (mechanically) done. Here it is, all assembled, and showing the CDR tray ejected.