64Copy Central


Building the C64 to Disk Drive Parallel Cable

Parts needed:

1 C64 user port connector
1 DB15 male connector with hood
6' 10 conductor unshielded cable

The completed parallel cable Figure 1
(click to enlarge)

This cable requires a 1541 with parallel port, or a 1571 with a parallel port.

Figure 1 shows the completed cable. The hardest part to obtain for this cable is the user port connector but my parts supplier page has two sources for them.

The user port connector has interesting pinouts. One side is marked with numbers from 1 to 12, the other with letters from A to N. The letter side is missing a few letters, namely G and I. Because of the missing letters, it is easy to make mistakes when soldering wires. Be sure to verify the pin numbers or letters before soldering each wire. See figure 2 below for the rear side of the connector.

The completed parallel cable Figure 2
(click to enlarge)


This cable contains no ground. This is a companion cable for the standard serial cable and the serial cable already has a ground line. Having another one in the parallel cable could result in a ground loop, a condition to be avoided! Differing voltage potentials between two different ground points would cause current to flow causing signal problems and possibly damaging the equipment.

Strip the wires to about .25", twist and tin them, then use the following pin chart to wire up the connectors:

Cable pinouts:

DB15 Male
User Port
C (PB0)
D (PB1)
E (PB2)
F (PB3)
H (PB4)
J (PB5)
K (PB6)
L (PB7)
8 (PC2)

Email the author: Peter Schepers | Last updated: Mar 18, 2009