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Redesigning an Acrylic Case

The acrylic case for BMOW’s Floppy Emu disk emulator is back in stock, along with the deluxe bundle of Floppy Emu with the case and SD card. Get them now at the BMOW store. This is a new version of the laser-cut acrylic case that I’m excited to introduce today.

Eagle-eyed readers may notice that this case looks subtly different from the previous version. I call it a “sandwich style” design because the top and bottom panels overhang the sides, holding the side pieces between them like cheese held between slices of bread. This differs from the previous case, whose six panels with interlocking notches were joined at flush edges with no overhang. The sandwich style ensures that all the side pieces are locked securely in place, and can’t wiggle loose after assembly.

The changes continue inside the case, with the addition of a button guide for the button plungers. The button guide serves several important purposes. During assembly, it makes it possible to stand up the button plungers on the Floppy Emu’s buttons without the plungers falling over, so the top panel can be lowered down over them to finish the case assembly. This is much easier than the old method of suspending the plungers from the top panel with tape. After assembly, the button guide provides a second point of support for each plunger, ensuring that it moves straight up and down without unwanted angles or slippage. This also means the plungers’ functioning is independent of the case screw tightness, without any need to fine-tune the screws.

The last big change for the case is the introduction of top-panel engraved symbols for the power and status LEDs, instead of light pipes. The light pipes were fun, but they made case assembly substantially more difficult, and they’re not necessary when the top panel already functions nicely as an LED diffuser. The engraved symbols with diffuse LEDs give the new case a more minimalist look.

You may be surprised to learn this is something like the 15th version of the Floppy Emu case since I started making them! Most of those earlier revisions were small adjustments to fit or style, so this sandwich style redesign is the first really significant change. I’ve seeded some experienced Floppy Emu beta testers with the new case, and they report it takes about half the time for assembly and is better all-around. I hope you enjoy it!

Read 4 comments and join the conversation 

4 Comments so far

  1. David Ziegler September 20th, 2020 8:57 pm

    Very Excited!! Just placed an order for the Model C bundle!! Wasn’t sure how to indicate the latest version but very excited to get this piece of kit!

  2. Detlef Kahner September 21st, 2020 7:55 am

    This is a great change, thanks for the ground-up re-design.

  3. Bill T. September 22nd, 2020 8:40 am

    Ordered up the new case for Model C. Would you be able to create maybe a limited run of this design for the Model B ? (I hope, I hope, I hope) 🙂

  4. David Morris September 23rd, 2020 4:05 pm

    Finally pulled the trigger on this! Been eyeing this device for a while now. Gives me a fun pandemic project to try out with my Apple //c+ and Mac Classic.

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