Intro: Custom NES Case Mod
I’ve been a huge fan of Nintendo (NES) since it first came out in 1985. I’ve always kept a working NES around, and occasionally play. Killing time surfing on the interweb, and I discovered casemodding. I immediately loved the idea of doing a custom paint job, or maybe some changes to an NES console. So this is what I’ve done.
I wanted to have LED lighting inside and saw some online with a window. I took an 8-bit image of the 1-Up mushroom and made a template. I cut out a mushroom shaped hole out of the top and filled the hole with easy cast available at your local craft store. This made a clear rigid window for the top. My friends at Critical Signs in Waterford, CT made the upside mushroom translucent decal. I made an LED array with about 9 LED’s and found a power source onboard that gave me about the 10 volts I needed to make the lights work properly. This was a little tricky because just about everywhere you tap in it screws with the games colors if you try to play it. I also wanted it to be switchable so that if you wanted to you could just leave the lights off, so I threw in a rocker switch on the back.
Next I wanted to be able to use a regular NES controller but have turbo if I wanted it. They already made this possible with a peripheral for the NES called the Four Score. This enabled you to plug in your original controller into it and have selectable turbo and choose up to 4 controllers at once for games like Super Off-Road. I thought it would be cool if this was part of the actual machine and not a plug in. I spent most of the time on this project finding room for this while still maintaining a somewhat stock appearance. You’ll notice on front that I also covered the spot where the controllers originally plugged in, to give it that clean shaved appearance.
Lastly, I wanted to repaint the machine with Mario themed colors. I painted the top red, the bottom blue, and the buttons black. I even masked off the original labels underneath so if you look at the bottom is somewhat stock appearing. I also went with a blue power LED to match the blue bottom. I performed the mod to be able to play unlicensed games and also you eliminate the stupid flashing if the game is a little dirty. The machine is fully functioning and plays like a dream.