One for the computer folks

Greetings All, I have built two CNC controllers that are built around a PC. This has worked well but now I'd like something smaller. I have a small lathe that right now is portable. Adding a CNC control would make it more versatile. But even a laptop computer is bigger than the lathe and would make the thing way less portable. The space available is a cube about 6 inches a side. I already have a 5 inch monitor that accepts NTSC video signals. The mouse and keyboard are wireless units made by Gyration. The mouse has a motion sensor inside which allows it to be just waved in the air to move the cursor. So it seems to me that a small motherboard, small hard drive, video card, and power supply are what I need to build this. Any suggestions? Thanks, Eric R Snow, E T Precision Machine

Reply to
Eric R Snow
Loading thread data ...

Reply to
John Fields

Mac Mini. Form factor: A cube about 6-ish inches on a side.

Don Bruder - - New Email policy in effect as of Feb. 21, 2004.
Short form: I\'m trashing EVERY E-mail that doesn\'t contain a password in the
 Click to see the full signature
Reply to
Don Bruder

Look up ITX. They are very small and if you use one HD, maybe a slot loading CD-ROM or DVD-ROM that are thin and you could use a small power supply, they will end up close to laptop sized if not smaller.

Failing that there are industrial boards that would work. When I used to work at my former company, their machines had 486 that were only about 4" by

6" with VGA, 1 IDE, floppy, 2 serial, 1 parallel, and 1 72 pin SIMM slot. While it was designed to be plugged into industrial backplate, it can run independently by wiring up 5v and 12v to appropierate pins. They were expensive at that time, around $300-$400 each while you could get used 133MHz Pentium desktop for about that price.

I'm sure those industrial CPU cards are still around and available in higher CPU speed. I'd suggest looking for one that uses Pentium-M as it uses about

1/4 the power of Pentium 4 with same speed and can use passive heatsink, no fan.
Reply to

The new Apple Mini Mac may fit your space - and it is a very nice machine


Eric R Snow wrote:

Reply to

David and Don beat me to it, but my answer is the same. See it here:

formatting link

I had a different idea for the mini. I was thinking of taking the case from a non-functional TRS-80 model 4 and mounting the mini in one of the drive bays, keeping the original face panel from the 5-1/4" drive. Since the CD loads from the front of the mini, this arrangement would allow me to insert the CD into the mini through the 5-1/4" slot, thereby keeping an authentic look. Replace the mono CRT with a 12" VGA tube and add the video board. Swap the keyboard (biggest challenge cosmetically), add a wireless mouse, and run the other ports to the back with cables. End result would be an up to date computer with that 1984 look. ;-)


quietguy wrote:

Reply to
Nelson Johnsrud

ElectronDepot website is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.