Bunker Project Log

30 Jul

Stub Hero: Phase I

I’ve always felt guilty that Stub lost his hand whilst cutting trim for the DDR Room. I thought I would start atoning by making it possible for him to play Guitar Hero.

Unfortunately, the Bunker Workshop is full to the brim with crap, I almost broke my neck just getting in there.

Enter the mess

This is the current state of my workbench. If my dad could see this, he would drive out and kick my ass. Usually the week before he comes out will be spent cleaning stuff like this up.

Bunker Workbench

So anyway, back to the job at hand. I’ve never opened a Guitar Hero Guitar before, but I’m betting that it’s a simple matter of two switches for the strum bar, which Stubby can’t hit, and a pot for the Whammy, which stub can’t… well… wham.

Here’s the victim, an Ant Commandos Freedom V. I’ve chosen it because, none of the Bunker Party regulars will touch it with a ten foot pole. I thought it was decent, until the jerks at Red Octane screwed with GHII and made it unusable without an adapter (which never really worked right anyway.)

The Victim

A bunch of screws later, I get to the soft gooey center.

Broke open

I’m happy to see my assumption proven correct. Two big dumb switches, waiting to be jumped.

The Buttons

My plan is to install 2 jacks, one for the replacement strum bar, and one for the whammy mechanism. Unfortunately, the Rat Shack is closed, and if I do have any jacks around, they are lost in the aforementioned workshop. For now I will solder the leads, and test them bare, hanging out of the body.

Solder 1:

Solder Step 1

Solder 2:

Solder Step 2

Now, I had planned on a single switch for the strum bar, then realized that all of the menu navigation requires the up and down strum. So it’s off to add one more wire. Also, that 1/8″ jack will become stereo instead of mono. I also would have loved to use some red wire, but that must have been buried somewhere. Red tape will have to do.

Solder 3:

Solder Step 3

All that remained was a quick continuity test, then it’s off to the console.

Ready for testing

Besides the hour I spent actually finding the receiver units, everything went perfectly! I navigated through the menus using either of the green wires, and played through “Infected” with 5 stars (on easy… whatev.)

Stay tuned for the trip to Radio Shack and the design for the actual actuator… whatever form it may take.

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