From: Steve Leach <stevenaleach_at_mac.com>
Date: Sun May 25 21:07:00 2003

Well, I must say I'm rather amazed at how quickly I got a response.
Within an hour of my post, two individuals (Steve Thatcher and Scott
LaBombard) both provided the information on the tantalum cap, and I
found the parts at DigiKey. Thanks guys!

I'm so glad to see some hope at getting the Altair back up and running.
  When it sizzled popped and smoked, it was like an old friend had died.

If you could humor my electronic ignorance, what exactly IS a tantalum
cap and how does it differ from a normal capacitor? I was never before
aware that there could be more to a capacitor than plates (or foil) and
an electrolyte. How can a capacitor have a polarity?

Another question, does anyone know where I can find a replacement for
the two position front panel switches on the Altair which are marked
"AMERICAN U.S.A ST1-1" These are 2 pos 3 contact switches, and I've not
been able to find anything exactly the same dimensions. I am hoping
that this is some standard switch and I'm just not aware of it :-)

Also, I've come across rumers of Altair manuals online in PDF format.
Does anyone know where I could find such a thing?

I'm sure I'll have more questions once I get the poor machine put back
together and start trying to figure out the disk drives and controllers
:-) The machine was stored for over seven years in a barn wrapped in
plastic bags (not my decision! Don't burn me at the stake!) I wonder
how many more surprises I'm in for?
Received on Sun May 25 2003 - 21:07:00 BST

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