OK, so I modified a PC power supply to power my yard display. Plan was to use it with the parallel port relay controller I'm building (and yes, I really am building it.) So anyway, I modified it & it worked. Then, I decided to use it to show my wife how the LED spotlights would look lighting up a tombstone. Like a dummy, I just twisted the wires together & left them uninsulated. Of course, I was careless and shorted the 12V lead to the case of the power supply & let the magic smoke out of it. I was kinda bummed, but lesson learned.
Anyway, I was perusing the interwebs the other day & came across a pretty neat idea. Why cut up a perfectly good power supply when all the wires you need terminate in the main connector? Why not build a breakout box with a switch and taps for the all the voltages? Tell me, why not? I've lost the link to the page I found the idea on, so I'll show how I built mine.
here's what I started with. A small project box from Radio Shack, 3 red binding posts, 1 black binding post, 4 ring terminals, the switch from my dearly departed hacked power supply, and an ATX power supply extension cable.
I started by drilling 4 holes evenly spaced on the bottom of the project box
Then I cut the male end off the extension cable and drilled a hole in the end of the project box just big enough for the wires to pass through.
Next I put the binding posts in.
I drilled a hole for the switch in the side of the box, making sure to position it so the terminals would clear the binding posts.
Things got a little less simple here. The wire colors on the ATX extension weren't the same as the standard colors on the power supply (couldn't find one online that was), so I plugged it into a power supply so I could match up the colors.
Then, it was just a matter of connecting the switch lead & a ground to the switch, and the ground, 3.3V, 5v, and 12V leads to the binding posts. I ran the extra leads into the box just to keep things neat.
This should be handy. I'll use it for bench power as well as power for my yard display.