So as the story goes, I picked up an Apple PowerMac G5 Quad Core A1117 and as luck would have it, it didn't come with a power cord. Looking around on ebay, I discovered that it could cost me upward of $50.00 including delivery to get one of these funky cords delivered. Hmmm, kind of unacceptable (to me).
Looking at the plug on the back of the machine, I figured this would be a good candidate for a 3D printed solution. Pondering how I'd do this for a while, I came up with a really good solution that I thought I'd share with you good folks.
What you'll need for this build is the following:
3D printer (or have a friend print it for you... Thingiverse STL link will be provided)
Sidecutter or tinsnips
1.5mm hex wrench
Soldering iron (and solder)
Flat head screwdriver
Hot Glue Gun
3D printed parts
2 - M2/1.5mm brass heatsets
2 - M2/10mm black oxide cap screws
1 - Old power cord
1 - Old 115v residential outlet
Thingiverse 3D Model Link:
If you don't have a 3D printer, and you'd like to pick up the plug and two plates, they can be found here : Plug parts order link
Step 1: Getting Your Conductors
Take the residential 115v outlet, wrap it in a bag (to contain all the debris), and gently tap on it till it shatters. Don't hit it too hard as you could damage the metal parts inside. Those metal parts are what we're after.
Step 2: Trimming Your Conductor Portions You Need.
This is what the metal parts look like that you should have salvaged from the previous step. Clip off the connector portions that clamp onto the blades in the plug. These will eventually be inserted into the 3D printed plug, and are the conductors that will pass the current into your machine.
Step 3: Preparing the Power Cord.
Now, cut off the end of your power cord. Discard the cut off end, as this is the part of the plug we'll be replacing with our 3D printed plug end.
Step 4: Soldering on the Connectors
Now, don't forget, you need to thread your power cord through the 3D printed backing plate BEFORE you solder on the connectors, otherwise you'll never get it through.
There are two types of backing plates available. One is for round power cords, and the other is for flat power cords. Use the one suitable for your application.
Scratch up the connection point, and put a bit of solder on it. Then, strip a bit of insulator off the wire and tin the end. Now solder on the wire, and fold over the excess bit of metal on the connector, so it covers the soldered on wire.
Step 5: Installing the Heatsets
Install your M2 heatsets into the plug. Use a soldering iron to gently heat the brass heatsets. While still hot, use a Popsicle stick to hold the heatset in place, so it remains flush with the surface of the plug.
Step 6: Setting Up the Plug So It Works Every Time.
Do NOT plug the power cord in yet.
Plug the connector into the back of your mac. You can use a flathead to push each connector onto each blade of the plug. Then, fill the voids in behind each conductor with hot glue. This will keep the conductors in the right position for future insertion and removal of the plug. Fill in the rest of the triangular void in the back of the plug with hot glue, encasing the wires in that area.
You will do this all with the plug installed in your mac.
Once you're done that, screw the backing plate onto the inserted plug with the two M2/10mm screws.
Step 7: Wrapping Up the Project
Put a bundle tie around the end of the cable as shown in the photos.
You're now done. Enjoy your inexpensive solution for this weird Apple plugs.