LEGO PF to NXT Adapter Cable
I really despise the NXT Motor design. The shape of the motor was basically just designed to allow construction of the LEGO Mindstorms NXT Kit's, 'AlphaOne' Robot easy. As a result, it makes it hard to use the NXT Motors in a lot of situations without extra bulk being added to your design. Often I just ditch the NXT Motor in preference for a LEGO Power Functions Motor. The downside to this approach is you have no feedback from the Power Functions Motors, unlike the NXT Motors with their Quadrature Rotary Encoders. You can use a LEGO Mindstorms RCX Rotation Sensor for a lot of applications.
To use the Power Function Motors with the NXT you need an adapter cable as you need to build your own cable as there is no commercial equivalent. You could use a 8528 Converter Cables for Mindstorms NXT and a 8886 Power Functions Extension Wire, but this can be a little on the long side for many situations. The alternative is to build your own by following the guide to creating your own Lego Mindstorms NXT to LEGO Power Functions cable, to control any PF motor or light.
What you’ll need:
- A regular Part #55805 Connector Cable
- A Part #8886 Power Functions Extension Cable
- Soldering Equipment
- Heatshrink Insulation Tubing
- A Hot Glue Gun or similar
You will also need some very basic electronic/soldering knowledge. An alternative way is to take you cable sets to you local Television Repairman who would join the cables for you, for a few dollars.
When it comes to the LEGO PF-to-NXT Adapter Cable, the only wires that concern us are the White and Black wires on the Mindstorms NXT Cable, which are to be joined to the centre two wires on the Power Functions Cable.
Cut the Mindstorms NXT Cable in half. Strip back the insulation by 10mm. Trim back all wires accepting the Black & White to the Insulation. Strip and Tin the Black & White Wires. Slide on a Piece of 6-8mm HeatShrink Tubing well away from the Soldering points.
Next repeat, and make the second cable from the left over two cable halves.
The 'Light Grey' LEGO Power Function Plug will also fit the older Technics motors, including the Race Buggy Motor.