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Unread 09-14-2012, 12:54 PM   #1
Cooling Neophyte
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Texas
Posts: 1
Default SATA Adapter IDE cable routing

If any of you have purchased phoenix32x's excellent SATA adapters (or are rolling your own), here's a tip for the IDE cable routing. Normally, there is VERY little clearance for the IDE cables, which will ultimately result in damaged cable unless great care is taken when inserting or removing trays, and sometimes even then it's unavoidable. So here's some instructions on how to modify the cable to greatly reduce the chance of damaging it, and I've attached some photos to use as visual aids as well.

You have to VERY carefully remove the strain relief retainers (the plastic bar that bends the ribbon cable back over the top of the connector) from both ends of the cable. This must be done VERY carefully to avoid damaging the piece that actually holds the cable down onto the pins. You have to pry up one of the tabs on the side of the connector that holds the retainer on until it breaks off. Then you can simply pull that side up and the other tab will break off with very little leverage on the retainer itself. There's no way I've found to remove the retainer without breaking off the tabs, short of cutting part of the plastic that the tabs slide into. Either way, you WILL be breaking plastic off the connector.

Removing that retainer will let you swap the cable ends and bend the cable UNDER the backplane adapter. You have to bend it fairly flat, and tape a piece of cardboard to the top side of the bend so that the bottom side of the IDE pins don't damage the cable. I also put tape on the bottom, just to prevent any incidental rubbing of the plastic tray retainer clip from damaging the cable as well (if you get it in there right there shouldn't actually be any contact).

This also has the added benefit of reducing the strain on the SATA connector. The connector on phoenix's adapter is soldered in at a slight angle, which helps, but having the IDE cable running parallel to the adapter board helps even more.

Another thing that helps with the cable positioning on the IDE connector on the backplane side, is sanding off the alignment tab (I didn't this but realized it after the fact). With the strain relief retainer removed, the cable now bends directly over the top of the tab, which can put pressure on the middle of the cable and possibly damage those wires. You can avoid it by making sure the cable has enough clearance when you bend it around (which is what I did), but sanding off that tab is a better solution. Just make SURE you sand
it off the correct end, or you'll have to do it to both ends :P
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Photo on 9-14-12 at 10.50 AM.jpg (29.6 KB, 22 views)
File Type: jpg Photo on 9-14-12 at 10.53 AM #2.jpg (81.4 KB, 25 views)
File Type: jpg Photo on 9-14-12 at 10.53 AM.jpg (47.4 KB, 23 views)

Last edited by Xardion; 09-14-2012 at 12:57 PM. Reason: Ugly formatting fixed.
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