Ebay horror ...

From: Richard Erlacher <edick_at_idcomm.com>
Date: Mon Jun 11 14:22:05 2001

As I wrote before, there aren't so many, but I make a distinction between those
likely to repair them and those likely to let them sit an rust while they
fantasize about what it might have been like to have one back when they were
relevant. Repair is the proces, among other things, of turning total rubbish
into something of potential use. There's lots of good that comes from that.

Unfortunately, it's often necessary to sacrifice one potentially repairable
machine in order to repair another. I have no patience for those who poo-poo
that notion. Where do they think those replacement boards, no longer
manufactured since sometime a couple of decades back, come from?

Whatever repair plans one may have, if one has the intention, or, at least,
hope, of restoring a machine to a useable state I think that's fine, but just to
have a bunch of big iron sittin on the back lot or in the barn (I once did this,
so I have a good idea of how useless it is.) with no idea of how to run it,
particularly when power or other resources unlikely to become available, are
required, makes no sense to me.

Would you, Tony, store an old IBM box that required 440-Volt 3-phase power, and
was missing a 48" disk drive without which it had little hope of working, and
without any notion of where to get software?


----- Original Message -----
From: "Tony Duell" <ard_at_p850ug1.demon.co.uk>
To: <classiccmp_at_classiccmp.org>
Sent: Monday, June 11, 2001 12:22 PM
Subject: Re: Ebay horror ...

> > There are some folks who think dead computers are of value for something
> > than parts, but I don't know very many. Give the sensible ones a break,
> Well, you're talking to one right now. The main use I have for dead
> computers is to repair them and turn them into _working_ computers.
> The only time I ever consider stripping a unit for parts is if the part
> is genuinely unavailable any other way [1]. In the case of the PC-jr that
> applies to the gate array in the video system only. All the other parts
> are easily available at the local electronics shop. And schematics of the
> machine are not hard to find.
> Therefore faulty PCjrs, unless it's the video gate array chip that's
> failed, should be repaired, not stripped.
> Anyway, is there any evidence that this machine was broken before it was
> stripped?
> [1] I've been repairing a number of HP calculators recently. Those things
> are mostly custom chips, so the only way to get parts is to strip other
> broken units and make one good machine from 2 broken ones. But having
> been given a few part-stripped machines recently, my first thought was to
> try and make at least one working machine from tha parts (I actually
> managed 2, and one that's nearly complete). The resulting machines are
> worthless to an HP collector (they look beat-up, labels are missing or
> damaged, wrong screws, etc) but they work. And to be honest, that's what
> I care about.
> As I said to the person who gave me enough parts to make an HP45 : I am
> happier with that machine than if you'd given me a perfect, working HP45.
> Oh, sure I can't sell the machine I've assembled for much money, but by
> repairing it, I've learnt a lot about how the HP45 works, how to test it
> and how to repair it. And that, guys, is what I am really interested in.
> -tony
Received on Mon Jun 11 2001 - 14:22:05 BST

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Oct 10 2014 - 23:33:57 BST