Commodore C64 ITX PC – Part VII ‘Finished’

Today I finally finished my C64 PC project.

Following on from yesterday, the first job on the list was to create the internal header cable to connect to Keyrah interface board to the motherboard.

Using a USB header cable from my spares, I cut away the USB socket and recrimped the four cables using crimps I picked up from Maplins.

Next, I fitted the pins to a floppy disk IDC following the color coding on the Keyrah schematics sheet. Here’s both ends, original and new.

….fitting to the Keyrah board and  hoping I’ve got the wires the right way around!

With that done, time to start cutting into the rear of the C64 case to allow for the motherboard I/O sockets to poke through.

Ideally I need to cut in the area I’ve marked in red  following the path of the blue line.

The cutting tool took some getting used to but after a short time I started to get the hang of it and was able to cut, grind and sand my way through the case. The tea towel was to stop plastic shavings from going everywhere….it didn’t work! 🙂

Just a little more sanding and I think we’re done.

Next, I tested fitted the PC components to checked the motherboard ports were accessible through the slots I’d just cut. It’s here that I decided not to use the motherboard I/O back plate as this would mean more cutting into the case and I preferred the thin slot that I’d created instead.

At first, the C64 case lid wouldn’t shut correctly as the C64 keyboard wiring loom was getting in the way. After a few well placed tie-wraps I had it tucked away but still the case lid wouldn’t shut completely. It’s then when I noticed that the SATA/ATX molex plugs were getting in the way. For the SATA cable, I simply  moved it to the other SATA port on the motherboard but for the ATX plug had nowhere to go.

I found that it was catching on the C64 keyboard mount so it was out with the cutting tool again to shave off a centimeter or two.

In the end, I had to make multiple cuts, refit and cut again but after a while I’d managed to get it just right. The only other adjustment I had to make was to cut a few  millimeters of each motherboard mounts.

As well as tie-wraping the cables out of the way, I affixed adhesive velco pads to each corner of harddrive. These worked out really well and do a good job of holding the drive in place. They also increase the drive slightly to help increase airflow.

The only things left was to plug in the monitor, power etc, hit the on button and pray!

WOOHOO! It’s alive 🙂

After a victory dance around the garden, the first thing to do was to check to make sure the C64 keyboard worked. With Notepad open they all checked out fine.

Next, I launched a program called ‘Core Temp’. This would give me a desktop widget showing current CPU temperature and also based on what I preconfigured would auto shut down the PC if it reached a high tempreture. On first boot the temp was at 43c and after about 3 hours the temp had raised to 51c. Not too bad but I think I’d feel alot better with a small internal fan fitted.

After setting up the USB wireless dongle I copied over the Gamebase64 files from my main PC and setup the frontend and Vice64.

…..and my first game? Chuckie Egg of course!

Commodore XP.

…and the finishing touch 🙂



8 responses to “Commodore C64 ITX PC – Part VII ‘Finished’

  1. Kick ass, now all you need is a monitor modded with an an old wood effect TV case and it’ll be full on 80’s.
    Hmm I wonder if the guts of a netbook will fit in the case of a spectrum rubber key. I may well have to try it when i get a new netbook

  2. Hello
    I would like to star a C64 ITX project myself, but I would like to use a i3 or i5 mobo.
    Space is at a premium inside the C64 case – please can you tell me what is the maximum height available for a mobo+processor+fan ?

  3. Hi Andrew, great to hear that you’re attempting you’re own C64 ITX project. The clearance is very tight and is about 2.5cm.

    Hope this helps


  4. Hey there and thanks very much, was a great little project to work on. Just think what could be done with the ultra small Rasberry PI…if mine ever arrives.

  5. Glad you like it, it was certainly fun to put together. Regarding building another I’m a little short on free time these days but I’ sure you’d have no problem putting one together. Forget about all the funky USB wiring just get yourself a cheap non working c64, a slimline ITX motherboard and a Keyrah device. Strip the c64 of all its innards, add the pc bits inside along with the Keyrah and hey presto, a c64 pc.

    Happy to help with any advice you need.

    Kind regards


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