Well, no you didn't ask, but it's about that time again - time for a GameCube Portable update. Actually, quite a bit has happened since the last installment, all to get us back to where we used to be.
When last we last looked in on our plucky GameCube modders...
All indications were that the latest problem with The Goddamn Right Trigger (TGRT) was that we had repaired it using an electronic gizmo - a potentiometer or 'pots' - from a third-party, non-Nintendo controller. With nothing to lose but a few more dollars, I started making the rounds on eBay and Kijiji looking for a genuine Nintendo GameCube controller that we could harvest (rip apart) for parts.
eBay had tons of controllers, still new in their packaging, but nothing under $50. Kijiji, however, is the flea market of the Internet and we found a few complete GameCube systems for $40 or less. It was a no-brainer when we encountered one young lady selling a GameCube with 4(!!!) controllers for $40. Just to add a bit of icing, the GameCube just happened to be the same DOL-101 engineering version that we used for our project - a handy bonus in the unlikely(?) situation where we needed a new motherboard or somesuch.
Kijiji Lady and I exchanged about a dozen emails before JediBoy and I made the trek to her place on the other side of town - our $40 in hand. When we got to her front door, she greeted us with a smile and an apology. Apparently she had sent one last email that we had not seen. It turned out that her GameCube - after sitting in a box for almost a year - would not play games.
She had tested it for us and it refused to read a game disk. She also found that one of the controllers was not functional. Although annoyed that she didn't think to test it before she placed a Kijij ad, it didn't matter that much to us. We had money and she had product. We told her everything was alright and drove off into the rainy night with our parts.
As if this story has not gone on long enough, the new part - the genuine Nintendo part - did the trick. TGRT was made functional once more as we silently prayed. I'd be a liar if I said I wasn't surprised. Logically, it was supposed to work. Emotionally, well, I'm surprised when anything works.
Gently, we re-installed the TGRT back into the case, this time using epoxy putty for a cleaner, safer job versus using hot glue or liquid epoxy. At every stage of the process we tested and tested again. The results are below:
Now we are ready (again and again) to finish the rest of the assembly. JediBoy was hoping to have it wrapped up by Boxing Day, but I'm pretty sure we're going to find some way to screw this up by then.