How to Build a Recycled Retro: NES Advantage Desktop Lamp Edition




Introduction: How to Build a Recycled Retro: NES Advantage Desktop Lamp Edition

About: I come from the 1980s. 81 Specifically. I great up with all the greats: Nintendo, Transformers, Thundercats, TMNT, Ghostbusters, Silverhawks, Sega. ...and more. I started Recycled Retro up out of a "What...

The Nintendo Entertainment System had some pretty interesting accessories. From the depths of it's seemingly infinite library of licensed and non-licensed mechanisms, I've dug out this beast. When you lift it, you'll understand that "beast" is widely accurate. It is a beefy piece of equipment that allowed players to feel like they were at the arcade. It had enhanced playability through the use of Turbo, Turbo Control, and even a Slow Motion button.  

Like all Nintendo products, this one pretty much just refuses to die, but if it does, it is usually due to outside sources. If you have a broken one, GREAT! If not, you can pick one up at a local vintage game store, flea market, or even eBay for varying prices. 

This was my second prototype, and I am still using it to this day. It is an amazing little guy and everyone loves it. Everyone that owns one enjoys it and claim that it's lead to conversations that end up in good memories. How can you argue with that?

Seriously. How? We all love our childhood video game memories. Probably with an exception of a few games. Especially those terrible ones that you rented on Friday and were stuck with over the weekend. I'll never forgive LJN for that X-Men game!! NEVER! NEVER!!! I...


Ok. Sorry about that. I've employed Wheeljack, the Autobot Engineer to walk you guys through this so I do research in the game room. 



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Step 1: What You'll Need!!

"Hello! I'm Wheeljack! Let's get right into this, shall we? As you can see, there is quite a few supplies you'll need. I've uplinked with Teletraan to Tag the images accordingly."

The joystick can be picked up off of eBay for a fairly cheap price, just watch out for the shipping. I suggest looking locally first. 
The Lampshade and Bottle Lamp Kit can be located at Lowes. You can also, of course find them online. 
The Krazyglue that is applied with a brush, is a must. There will be untold messes, I've not seen since the battle of Tyger Pax if not!

Step 2: The Four Footed Abomination!

"First, we'll have to slide the X-Acto very carefully under the edge of the rubber feet on the bottom. Work the edge with a left/right rotation with a smidge of forward force. Once you have it just right, and you'll know when that is, slip the whole edge underneath and continue."

"It is slow, but you need to be patient and careful. You need the feet, but you need your fingers more. Ask Michael what happens when he get's in a rush with the X-Acto."

Step 3: A Whole Lot of (un)screwing! Part One.

"There are six screws holding the heavy black bass into place. The four corners, and in the middle of the top and bottom. Pretty straight forward, just need to use your Phillips and do work, son."

"Don't forget to save these screws. If they're particularly rough, there are a few more you can trade out on the inside..."

Step 4: The Easiest Way to Avoid Smashing Your Fingers.

"The way to open this thing up is to grab the wires and pull up against the base. Turning it upside down will work sometimes, but more often than not, it sticks."

Step 5: A Whole Lot of (un)screwing. Part Two

"This is the fun part. My servos ache just thinking about it. Once again, it is straightforward, but to help out, I've got Teletraan to Tag each one."

Step 6: Very Carefully Now...

"Here is a very tricky bit. The button's control board will not come out unless you pop these guys off. Now, it is very tricky, disturbingly difficult."

"Just take a flat head screwdriver and go in under it at this point right here, exactly. Work it back and forth, slowly prying it up. Be careful, the middle has the control pieces for the button that is attached to the shell, and we do not want to damage it."

Step 7: Now, Gut It!

"Once you pull the boards out, flip over the main one. You'll notice two LEDs. You want those to complete your lamp. Just grab hold and work it back and forth until you have broke them lose."

"From there, we shall remove the white supports and then the legs. Get them as close to the base as possible."

Step 8: Button Pusher!

"This part can be harrowing. There are a lot of buttons, and a lot of holes. Don't worry, We're going to take care of you. Teletraan, label the buttons please."

Step 9: Removing the Joystick and Spring!

"Now...just twist the ball off the thing, and pull the spring..."

Step 10: Button Placements

"Now you should have a shell, and buttons. Teletraan, Identify and Correlate Button Placement!"


"You possibly want to wash the parts in hot, soapy water. They ARE from the 1980s."

"Teletraan, access database Advantage02 and reference an image of the buttons and their locations from the backside of the shell and identify."


Step 11: Now You Can Begin to Glue Them Into Place...

"Now, place the Slider Button off to the side. We're going to save it for last."

"The trick is to brush the glue around the top of the edge, and then place it into the button's socket. You can hold it, and flip it over to adjust the placement for a few seconds, any more and it tacks up. Apply pressure to the button as it dries. Be careful you do not glue your fingers to the buttons!"

"Let each button dry fully before moving onto the next."

<These edges right here, human.>

Step 12: The Slider Button & You...

"Now...this button is unique. You can choose whether to have a player selected. First or Second Player."

"The application of glue is unique on this, because we glue around the button socket on the shell, then apply and slide it to our selected player."

"In this case, we're going to go for Player Two."

"When we're finished, it will look like this."

Step 13: The Lamp Kit

"Open the packaging up and remove all the pieces. From there, toss the two smallest rubber grommets." 

<Your inventory should be the following, Wheeljack...>

Step 14: Assembly...

"Follow the provided instructions for the basic assembly. There are certain alterations we need to make, and to assemble it in a particular order."

Step 15: Assembly, Continued.

"Now, back the lock nut all the way to the backside of the nipple. This will provide us with enough of a neck to pass it through the joystick's socket."

Step 16: Adding & Trimming the Rubber Grommet.

"We need to trim the rubber grommet to half the height. To do this, place it on the nipple, and push it all the way against the lock nut. Back the nut out further and push it more. Then, tighten the nut against the grommet."

"After that, use the X-Acto knife to trim it. It doesn't have to be perfect. It will be a rough go. Just apply pressure and work your way down and around. Be patient and be careful. Doing this while it is on the nipple allows a grip and stationary force to cut it against. "

Step 17: Applying the Undercarriage and Pulling the Wire Through..

"Pulling the wire through our little creation makes it easier to hold both in the joystick socket while we perform the next step."

Step 18: Secure It Into Place!

"Place the check ring on the nipple that is poking through the joystick socket."

"While supporting from the other side, start screwing the socket base onto the nipple. You want it snug, but not tight enough to bend the check ring."

Step 19: Tying That Ever Important Underwriter's Knot!

"Now this part is very important. You /can/ skip it; but I don't suggest it. The Underwriter's Knot isn't one that you would've picked up in Boy Scouts. It's sole purpose is to keep your lamp's power interface cable from being ripped out of the lamp itself in case someone trips over the cable. Instead, it will come unplugged from the wall in most cases."

"It is fairly straight forward, and the instructions that are included has a diagram, but it may be a bit rough to follow. Just pull the cable through and split it like so."

"From there, all you need to do is arch them out, and loop them, placing the opposing end through the sibling's hoop. It can be tricky, don't be afraid to practice a bit. It doesn't need to be nice and tight until after you've connected it to the lamp's socket switch. Then you can choke up on it and work it up toward the base of the socket switch and then pull it snug."

Step 20: Finishing Touches?

"Now, pull the wire through the backside of the unit while guiding the socket switch into it's base housing. Once there and situated, position it as you wish. Michael usually has his switches oriented from side to side, although I believe they look just as good front to back. Of course, Michael is just a bit what you humans call obsessive compulsive."

"After it is completely situated, take the cardboard insulated housing and slide it over top and into place. You will have to press with some significant force to lock it. You will be able to tell it is locked when you hear an audible click."

Step 21: Strain Vs Resistance

"To add a bit of strain relief, just guide the wires around the screw posts."

Step 22: All Your Base Are Attached...

"To make sure the base fits properly, you need to 'modify', the joystick support bridge with a hammer. Just place it on the floor and give it about three good bashings. aim for the middle, then work your way toward the outside." 

"Like this!" 


"Once that is complete, it should fit all snug like back into the shell. From there, screw in the six black screws you removed, making sure they are nice and tight."

"Once that is done, it's time for the rubber feet. Most of the time you can just stick them back on with a bit of pressure. If for some reason it will not stay, brush on a little super glue and then place it. Remember, they go in each corner!"

Step 23: Finishing Touches!

"You're in the home stretch now, human! Don't give up! All your patience is about to pay off."

"Just screw in your Appliance Bulb. Make sure it is in the 40watt range!"

"Now, clip the lampshade on. Make sure the lampshade is free of all stickers. This will heat up rather fast, and could be a fire hazard if you missed the tag on the inside of the shade's harness."

Step 24: Now Light Our Darkest Hour!!!

"You've done it! Great job! I knew you could! Now plug it in, hit the switch, and kick've earned a moments respite!"

"If you've ran afoul of any trouble, feel free to message, and we'll help walk you through it best we can!" 

"Also, human, if you've enjoyed our first Instructible, let us know! We always like getting feedback!"

"If you've used this and created your own, take a picture and send it along! We'll host it in our upcoming gallery on!"

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    7 Discussions


    4 years ago on Step 22

    Nice Instructable, I love these retro projects.

    Oh, and by the way,

    Somebody set up us the bomb.


    8 years ago on Introduction

    This is amazing. So glad your Autobot could help with the photoshoot!


    8 years ago on Introduction

    I remember my brother and I always called it the NES Disadvantage


    8 years ago on Introduction

    I was enjoining each picture with our special commentator :*** D
    Autobots attack!


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    I'm glad! I wanted to hit he ground running right out of the gate. :)