Tomy Tutor Toy Computer As Raspi Case




How to turn a 1980s mechanical computer-like toy into a real deal Raspbian desktop (that's still damn portable).

Bonus points: figure out a way to mount a mini keyboard on it. I didn't but maybe you'll want to.

Step 1: Get a Broken Tomy Tutor Tiny Computer Toy From Ebay

Mine was $12. The less used the clearer the screen will be (mine has superficial scratches from the button-controlled mechanisms.. the toy was well used. Since this is literally a Computer Museum artifact, maybe it's ok if you get one that is broken or not in the best of shape.) I paid $12 plus shipping.

Step 2: Get a Raspi B+ With a Cute Screen

Step 3: Get 6 Kinda Expensive Extension Cables

You'll need one of each of these, I got all of mine on Amazon:

1) Ethernet
2) USB
4) stereo-mini
5) micro-USB (power) extender
6) MIcroSD-extension cable

Step 4: Remove the Guts of Your Tomy (it Has 14 Screws! Egads)

Mine was wound so tight that the "scrollwork" part behind the screen spun super fast and almost gave me a horrendous paper cut. There are some metal parts in there, and small pieces, so make sure to put them all in a jar or plastic bag for safekeeping.

Step 5: Clean the Chassis

Somebody's kid threw up inside mine

Step 6: Cut Holes and Drill Screw Mounts for Your Mountable Extension Cables

Step 7: Slap It Back Together and Voila, Raspi-in-a-box!



    • Organization Contest

      Organization Contest
    • Trash to Treasure

      Trash to Treasure
    • Paper Contest

      Paper Contest

    5 Discussions


    Reply 3 years ago on Step 7

    Feel free to post a link, but the reason the screen appears white is because I did not have an SD card loaded into it


    3 years ago

    absolutly amazing, i would love to see you using the current keys and an arduino for the keyboard

    1 reply

    Reply 3 years ago

    the "keys" are actually two levers (left orange, right orange) and a third smaller lever/button (red), so it has limited utility. Yes, you could put a switch but I use a wireless mini keyboard or a usb setup when running with the hdmi

    yes, you could cut each key out and then build a small mechanism and use a teensy or equivalent, time on this project has waned