Cable strain issues with modfied controllers

I have run into a bit of a snag. Finished my prototype genesis 6 button controller to PSX converter a month ago, and there were some issues with it (I disliked the look of the box dongle and would have liked to have the right amount of buttons), so decided that I needed to make some changes.

Yesterday I bought a pair of Sega Saturn controllers and some various materials to convert them to work with the PS1 digital protocol. I plan on mounting the converter board inside the controller itself. My problem is that, unlike PS2 and Gamecube controllers that use an internal system of cable strain relief, where the cord is routed through posts, the Saturn controller uses a molded strain relief that is part of the cable itself. I need some way of affixing the cord to the controller in a durable manner that is ascetically pleasing.

Two things I have considered:

  1. Cutting the end of the Saturn controller off and using something like a modified Centronics hood to contain the PSX connector. I think there might be issues trying to plug two controllers in at once due to the added bulk though.

  2. Trying to find a PS1 controller that has the same size of molded strain relief. No luck with this so far.

Has anyone done anything similar before?

The strain relief is glued onto the cable. If you are skillful with a hobby knife you can slice open one side of the strain relief and peel it off. I’ve done this, in case you were wondering :tup:

I found another thread on this board where someone does basically what I am doing, except they use an external project box. They drill holes the PCB and fasten the cable with a zip tie.

That might be a solution for getting a good attachment point in the controller, and your suggestion will definitely make it look nicer and more professional.

I routed my PCB, but I might have to tweak it a bit to get it to fit inside the controller. I picked up 3/128" thick PCB material and managed to make the entire conversion circuit (basically just a single IC with some surface mount caps) about .95" by 1.05".

I bet I could get that down to 1.00" by .70" or so by changing the shape of the pads. The problem I am facing right now is that its hard for me to make traces much smaller than 1/50 of an inch.