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Quadra 950: Case Issues and Modifications

The Quadra 950 case is huge. The size seems to be due to the requires of its variant, the Apple Workgroup Server required a tower capable of expansion cards and disks. Internally, unfortunately, it's more about Nubus cards then about extra disks.

The infamous Quadra 950 case 'latches'

Known not to survive the test of time, owners of Quadra 950s will probably all have broken latches on their cases, resulting in the side cover hanging half off. My case cover only had one, of two, latches left... and sourcing one was impossible. This is what the latches look like; I needed another one.

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Fortunately for us nowadays, we can model small objects up in free software and send them off to print houses. I've therefore duplicated the case latch in Tinkercad and have sent it off to Shapeways.

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Shown below is the latch in place, the latch removed and then the other location where the second latch should be. The second latch was missing on my case and you can see why. There is meant to be a second vertical plastic bar that prevents the latch from sliding too far forward. The latch has therefore slid out of the casing and disappeared. I'll need to do something about this once the new latches arrive... Sure I have bought a few, so I'll have a stash to rely on; but I want to fix it once-and-for-all, so I'll need to araldyte a vertical bar fashioned out of plastic to replace the missing piece.

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The result

It printed.. it worked 'ok'... but you need to make sure you choose a STRONG plastic! The 'Strong & Flexible Plastic' from Shapeways wasn't strong enough... i.e. the base flexed. So either grab the design here (STL) and make it chunkier along the base, or use the 'Acrylic Plastic (Detail Plastic)', as this might be tougher. Good luck!

CD Bezel: Attempt 1

I've also chosen to design a CDROM Bezel for the front case... the Quadra requires a custom Drive and/or bezel that I've been unable to acquire; but I also want to use my own drives. Hence the following design. I've included a picture of the original drive-bay cover. It actually has metal shielding behind it. In fact, the entire Quadra 950 case has shielding inside it. This adds to the weight but, most importantly, limits the electronic interference the machine can produce and also consume. It really does add to the vintage charm; not many products nowadays care about shielding themselves or others from their beastly interference.

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So... hehehehe... it arrived. I think anyone could tell from the images above that using a tape measure or wooden ruler would be a bad idea. Overall, the outer dimensions are fine. It seems that I was a few millimetres off on the internal drive slot though. I measured the distances for the tabs that lock into the case from the actual outside of the plate. It turns out that I, by a millimetre or two, made the drive slot too narrow; although the height is spot on. Unfortunately, the tabs are butted right up against the inside edges of the drive slot, so I can't do any filing work to make everything fit.

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Balls... Back to the designer to widen that slot. Meanwhile, the vertical dimensions are perfect! The warping is due to the 2mm error. I hadn't noticed and tried to fit it into the case... the pressure easily warped the material. Note that the left side (when looking at the front of the case) is shallower than the right side. The 5th image above explains this. I must've had one-too-many beers when designing to not even realise this!

CD Bezel: Attempt 2

I've re-jigged and re-ordered (Here's the design)... embarrassing... but it's on it's way. A note here with Tinkercad and Shapeways, don't just hit Design->Upload for Printing each time. After your first upload to Shapeways, if you make changes in Tinkercad, download it as an STL and then upload it over your existing Shapeways design. It'll just keep everything neat and tidy for all of your accounts!

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About stevenh

Trains... trains... trains... + Electronics + Japan.
Comments (4) Trackbacks (0)
  1. I’m interested in printing that Quadra 950 latch. Would you be willing to share the STL?

    • Chris,

      I’d nearly forgotten about this post. The case clips came from Shapeways and worked, but were tedious. You’ll need to modify the shape and add up to 2mm along the base, otherwise it bends too easily. Otherwise choose a harder material than the default ‘strong and flexible’ as you don’t want ‘flexible’!

      The STL is now linked in above under the ‘result’ heading.

      Good luck.

  2. Good evening! Thanks for the stl for 950 clips! Any chance you would be willing to share the final stl for the bezel? I have 4 950 machines that could use spruced up and get good case plastics installed for those bezels.

    Thanks again!


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