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RE: [N8VEM-S100:6802] Re: Reorder of S-100 8-slot Backplane PCB


Here's our first hurdle....   the ALTAIR back plane is 11" wide.  It is like this because the card slot guides are screwed in from the bottom of the board.    The IMSAI back plane is only 8.5" wide. 
The 8 slot board v2 is 7.25" wide.

It's not a problem to expand to 8.5", but 11" makes it interfere with the IMSAI chassis by about .25"

Option 1.  Make it 11", ready for the ALTAIR... IMSAI use will require cutting the board.
Option 2.  Make it 8.5", with IMSAI and ALTAIR holes, ALTAIR use will just have to sacrifice the card slot guides.
Option 3.  Make it 10.75" with a 8.5" irregular width for the first slot, this will allow it to fit both systems, but only allows a single screw to hold the 5/8" wide card slot guide (otherwise needs 2 screws).

In Option 2, ALTAIR users can always create their own cross beams using 1/2" aluminum angle to support the card slot guides.  Here's a picture of the first slot as pictured from the back.
Look closely, you see 2 holes for card slot guides.  Now look at the rail that supports this board, it starts near the S-100 connector, this board is supported by the holes of the S-100 connector to two of these rails.  New rails can easily be added, see the multiple holes available on the end of the chassis? 

The NEXT hurdle involves the fact that the first slot on the IMSAI is spaced just over 1" to slot 2.  This is because the first slot is meant to reach the front panel.  All the other slots are the regular 0.75" spacing...  This shouldn't be too much trouble, but it becomes trouble when wanting to cascade these boards to make larger back planes.  There will need to be a sacrifice of one or two slots to maintain correct spacing.