Round-up of classic HP stuff

From: Frank McConnell <>
Date: Sun Jan 18 15:59:29 1998

Sam Ismail <> wrote:
> (2) 21MX E computers (one having 1MW of memory, the other with 256MW)

For Joe: MW == megawords. These being 2100-family machines a word is
16 bits.

> (1) HP1000A

Um, no, I think that is an HP1000 F-series. (I have trouble keeping
1000 M/E/F-series straight though, really should copy those pages out
of the test equipment catalog and paste them to my monitor or

> (1) HP1000 model 600A (hard drive, 3.5" floppy)

Cute little thing, in a deskside tower chassis.

And a 2621P terminal that I am guessing was last used as its console:
it's got the fiber-optic console interface attached.

> (1) Tape Reader Reroller (the 8th of only a few ever made)

Well, that's what the seller told us. Definitely 1960s stuff though.
The idea was that the reader would re-roll your tape into its canister
as it read. I gathered that that part didn't work too well. There were
also some drafting erasers, um I mean hand-held re-rollers in a box

> (2) 2647F terminals (these are actually computers running Basic with
> built-in tape and external 5.25" disk drives but are used as
> terminals to the 21MX)

Take a close look at the label on the front. They say "HP3000".
That's because these 2647Fs were originally meant to be used as
consoles for HP3000 series 64/68/70 systems. (Though, in April 1984
when the shop I was at got a brand new 3000/64, the 2647F console with
it had a 2647F badge on the front.)

It's been a while since I had one of these to play with, but I'm
thinking that the BASIC was loaded from diskette. There is a sort
of command/script interpreter in the terminal though.

> (2) Mag-tape drives (Frank will provide the specs and model #s)

I think one of them has a 7970B tag and the other doesn't have a model
tag but behaves like a 7970E, meaning nine-track 1600 BPI read/write.
It's been modified, though, and I gather it started life as a
read-only drive that could read 7-track tapes, and that we may have
the parts to convert it back. Some of the parts are definitely there,
but I can't judge their condition or completeness 'til we do a
decent inventory of the lot and I try to wrap my head around the
service manual for that drive.

> (1) Big-assed line printer and stand

HP 2608A. Needs work, doesn't feed paper right.

As line printers go it's kinda dinky. E.g. you can take it off its
stand and then two people can carry it without too much trouble, so
long as there aren't stairs or doorways or RVs in the way. So if you
have Sam's attention and are near a proper line printer please
show it to him so he can get properly calibrated.

> (2) HP racks

No, two 19" HP racks on a pedestal. Apparently from an engine test
system of some sort. HP used to embed 2100-family CPUs in all sorts
of specialized test equipment and that's what these look like they
were, once upon a time.

> The guy was more interested in getting rid of it and having it go to a
> good home than getting money for it. We paid him $200. Of course Frank
> now has an invaluable contact for discussing his HP passion (the guy we
> bought the stuff from is a 26 year HP veteran).

Yeah, y'all really should have hung around a bit longer before zipping off
to unload.

> I think when it was all done Frank basically had an accident in his pants
> as he could not contain his excitement over his good fortune.

No, I was just dazed'n'confused because I really hadn't expected we'd
be moving it that day, just looking and dealing to come get it in a
couple weeks' time. So today I am playing catch-up, then maybe going
off to rearrange /dev/closet02 in the hope of making a hole that some
of this stuff can fit in.

Catch-up? Um, yeah, I have a bunch of IBM manuals and stuff to sort
through and inventory. They go with an IBM RT PC (6150). Got that too.

Up to my butt in alligators, I remain,

-Frank McConnell
Received on Sun Jan 18 1998 - 15:59:29 GMT

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