These darned old computers

From: Sellam Ismail <>
Date: Sat Aug 24 15:03:01 2002

On Sat, 24 Aug 2002, Tony Duell wrote:

> Anyway, you can get the disk controller or RS232 board out relatively
> easily. Open up the case. If you have a US model you then have to undo the
> screws holding the shield over the back of the logic boards, if you have
> an 'export' model, then just take off the little bracket at the top (2
> scres). Then unplug all the connectors on the CPU board (IIRC you can't

Relatively easy? Relative to what? :)

> get these back in the wrong places). Don't forget the 2 (delicate)
> tapewires at the top that carry the bus signals from the CPU board to the
> disk controller/RS232.

These weren't too bad but the adhesive on the one for the disk controller
had gone brittle and the leads started to peel off. I had to use a small
jewelers screwdriver to pinch them into the connector.

> Then undo all the screws holding the CPU board in place and take it out
> (you can leave all the metalwork fixed to the bottom case). Finally, undo
> the 4 screws holding the disk controller or RS232 board as appropriate,
> unplug the power cable (and internal drive cable if you're doing the disk
> controller) and take the board out.

Yeah, what I said. Pain in the ass ;)

> I am supriused. I though the power cable was present on all machines. But
> admittedly I can't be sure since my M3 and M4 came with the RS232 board
> fitted.

I can't say having seen only two samples, but what leads me to believe
that the cable was added only with the serial port option is that each
power cable is labeled for its function. The CPU power cable is labeled
"CPU" and the RS232 option cable is labeled "RS232".

> > The Commodore 64 I have is just plum dead. Or at least it seems to be.
> > The video cable I am using has four connectors on it: red, yellow, white
> > and black. The 1702 monitor has three jacks on the back: chroma, luma and
> > audio. I tried all different combinations trying to get video on the
> > display but no die. What's the deal with that? I think I'm using the
> Is the 'power' LED on on the C64? PSUs for these machins are notoriously
> unreliable.

Yes. But I've seen dead C64's that have a lit LED.

> > The Radio Shack Color Computer 2 is confusing. And somewhat lame. I have
> Considering it's the only machine you've mentioned that can run
> multi-user, I think that 'lame' is a bit inappropriate!

The hardware design is limiting. This was not meant to be expanded or
extended easily.

> Correct. The CoCo2 only has an RF output as standard. The CoCo3 has
> composite video (and audio) outputs, an analogue RGB output connector,
> and so on. Not to mention that the CoCo 3 is a much nicer machine in
> other ways!

True, but that doesn't excuse RS for making the CoCo2 so cut-rate.

Thanks for the video tips. I'll try them out later.

Sellam Ismail Vintage Computer Festival
International Man of Intrigue and Danger

 * Old computing resources for business and academia at *
Received on Sat Aug 24 2002 - 15:03:01 BST

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Oct 10 2014 - 23:34:37 BST