Jump to content

Photo

600/800XL Keyboard variants


129 replies to this topic

#101 fernan OFFLINE  

fernan

    Space Invader

  • 15 posts

Posted Tue Jan 2, 2018 9:34 PM

hi all 

 

1 quick question that is slightly on topic.

 

Can anybody confirm that the keyboard is mounted to the top case with 4 screws and 3washers?

my keyboard is mounted to the case with 4 screws, in between them are 3 washers. Am i missing a washer or maybe the washer was added later by the original owner of my atari 600xl

 

this video of the 800xl keyboard seems to have 2 washers.     



#102 tjlazer OFFLINE  

tjlazer

    Stargunner

  • 1,979 posts
  • Retro Atari Addict
  • Location:Historic South Tacoma, WA USA

Posted Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:53 AM

hi all 

 

1 quick question that is slightly on topic.

 

Can anybody confirm that the keyboard is mounted to the top case with 4 screws and 3washers?

my keyboard is mounted to the case with 4 screws, in between them are 3 washers. Am i missing a washer or maybe the washer was added later by the original owner of my atari 600xl

 

this video of the 800xl keyboard seems to have 2 washers.     

 

Mine only had 2 washers on the left side!  No washers on the right.  Seems it varies to address any wobble of the keyboards?



#103 tjlazer OFFLINE  

tjlazer

    Stargunner

  • 1,979 posts
  • Retro Atari Addict
  • Location:Historic South Tacoma, WA USA

Posted Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:56 AM

Bump!  I just wanted to say that I just installed a new 2018 version of Best's mylar for the 800XL and it works great!  I had one with a badly damaged mylar that I could not even begin to mess with to repair.  $32 for the new Mylar.

 

http://www.best-elec...board Mylar.htm



#104 tjlazer OFFLINE  

tjlazer

    Stargunner

  • 1,979 posts
  • Retro Atari Addict
  • Location:Historic South Tacoma, WA USA

Posted Sat Mar 17, 2018 5:40 PM

Close up of switch.

I have another 800XL with the type 2 keyboard with one key (RETURN) that does not work.  It seems it's the switch as the traces are fine.  Tested them.  What can I do to try to fix it?  Would I need a new switch?

Attached Thumbnails

  • bad key.jpg

Edited by tjlazer, Sat Mar 17, 2018 5:42 PM.


#105 Sugarland OFFLINE  

Sugarland

    Chopper Commander

  • 141 posts

Posted Sat Mar 17, 2018 8:24 PM

Can it be opened up? It looks here like you are not seeing the switch. Might need contact cleaner or a bending of the metal contacts to make better contact.  I'm not familiar with the type 2's.



#106 tjlazer OFFLINE  

tjlazer

    Stargunner

  • 1,979 posts
  • Retro Atari Addict
  • Location:Historic South Tacoma, WA USA

Posted Sun Mar 18, 2018 7:29 PM

Tried contact cleaner a few times and it did not help.  So do these key switches just unsolder off?  Thinking of removing it to check it out, but might as well try to order a replacement at this point before I dive into it...  Where can I get one?



#107 Sugarland OFFLINE  

Sugarland

    Chopper Commander

  • 141 posts

Posted Sun Mar 18, 2018 7:54 PM

Tried contact cleaner a few times and it did not help.  So do these key switches just unsolder off?  Thinking of removing it to check it out, but might as well try to order a replacement at this point before I dive into it...  Where can I get one?

 

Yes the switch assembly should come out once the solder points on the under side of the PCB are desoldered.  Note: I've not done that myself.   Do you mean replacement switch or keyboard?

 

XL keyboards aren't cheap best to try to fix or replace the switch. That keyboard is worth trying to fix.



#108 tjlazer OFFLINE  

tjlazer

    Stargunner

  • 1,979 posts
  • Retro Atari Addict
  • Location:Historic South Tacoma, WA USA

Posted Sun Mar 18, 2018 11:39 PM

I fixed it, was easier than I thought.  I unsoldered the key.  Then I opened it up and straightened the metal leaf part inside, and it tested good.  Reinstalled it and it's fixed.  At the same time I noticed some cold solder joints on the back and 4 more keys didn't work.  Had to do some more soldering and repairing a broken pad, all is good now!  100% working.

 

https://deskthority....I_pushbuttons-2


Edited by tjlazer, Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:32 AM.


#109 Sugarland OFFLINE  

Sugarland

    Chopper Commander

  • 141 posts

Posted Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:17 AM

I fixed it, was easier than I though.  I unsoldered the key.  Then I opened it up and straightened the metal leaf part inside, and it tested good.  Reinstalled it and it's fixed.  At the same time I noticed some cold solder joints on the back and 4 more keys didn't work.  Had to do some more soldering and repairing a broken pad, all is good now!  100% working.

 

https://deskthority....I_pushbuttons-2

 

Great!! Four more keys stopped working as you did this?  It's a great keyboard. Good to hear you got it working.

 

Thank you for that link that is great. I'm wondering if replacement switches can be ordered from here.  I think very often the switch can be fixed by bending the leaf as you did.


Edited by Sugarland, Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:22 AM.


#110 tjlazer OFFLINE  

tjlazer

    Stargunner

  • 1,979 posts
  • Retro Atari Addict
  • Location:Historic South Tacoma, WA USA

Posted Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:34 AM

Yeah it must of worked loose as I was messing with the keyboard, and when I had put it back together after the one key repair, 4 more were not working.  Took it apart and noticed the cracked solder joints.  One pad lifted as I was trying to reheat it, and I had to do a repair.



#111 Sugarland OFFLINE  

Sugarland

    Chopper Commander

  • 141 posts

Posted Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:58 AM

If I had to choose between a failing mylar (type 4) or failing solder joints and bent switch leafs (types 1 & 2), I choose the latter. The new type 4 mylars are $33 from Best.


Edited by Sugarland, Mon Mar 19, 2018 1:00 AM.


#112 Sugarland OFFLINE  

Sugarland

    Chopper Commander

  • 141 posts

Posted Fri May 4, 2018 3:05 AM

I got some 'super lube' synthetic grease. Recommended for use on plastics. I'm wondering if it will take a very sticky type 4 stackpole from terrible to a usable and smooth experience. I'll let you know soon!



#113 Sugarland OFFLINE  

Sugarland

    Chopper Commander

  • 141 posts

Posted Fri May 4, 2018 3:37 AM

I got some 'super lube' synthetic grease. Recommended for use on plastics. I'm wondering if it will take a very sticky type 4 stackpole from terrible to a usable and smooth experience. I'll let you know soon!

 

 

I put some on the sides of the white plastic plunger mechanism under the key caps and it helps. Especially it removes the 'dry' feeling. However the grease doesn't fix the bigger keys like the lower left shift key from sticking when pressed near a corner. 


Edited by Sugarland, Fri May 4, 2018 3:38 AM.


#114 Sugarland OFFLINE  

Sugarland

    Chopper Commander

  • 141 posts

Posted Mon Jul 2, 2018 7:46 PM

I do like this thread!

 

A good thing to know about the Type 1 and Type 2 models - some of the keycaps can start to look bleached on the top. See photos below. It seems to be caused by age and NOT by use. Perhaps the bromide reacting with the brown dye? I had thought it was from natural acids in the oils of our skin from typing use but no... See attached photos this is from an unwrapped XL which has never been typed on (or at least since manufacture).

 

I've attached photos of the same keyboard. Some keycaps are starting to bleach while others are not. Presumably because some have more bromide than others or another variation in manufacture.

 

Chime in if you have input on this.

Attached Thumbnails

  • _DSC0029.jpg
  • _DSC0028.jpg
  • DSC0015-Atari-600XL-keyboard-control.jpg


#115 Faicuai OFFLINE  

Faicuai

    Dragonstomper

  • 794 posts
  • Location:Florida, U.S.A.

Posted Mon Jul 2, 2018 8:07 PM

After many moons and trials...

 

BEST and most durable keyboard, ever made, for the 800XL... Even more durable than my favorite 8-Bit (800 / Incognito)....

 

_1D38185-web.jpg

 

_1D38202-web.jpg

 

 

No mylar crap, cheap tricks, etc. Just a solid chunk of PCB and metal-bracket, with a nice and simple keyboard on top, with proportionally spaced and sized keys (the don't look cartoonish / toyish, like some of the XLs I had with mylar-based keyboards...)

 

This keyboard only comes in a member-limited horde of 800XLs, most of them loaded (as well) with Rev.C MoBos, FULLY socketed, by-the-way...



#116 Sugarland OFFLINE  

Sugarland

    Chopper Commander

  • 141 posts

Posted Mon Jul 2, 2018 8:26 PM

After many moons and trials...

 

BEST and most durable keyboard, ever made, for the 800XL... Even more durable than my favorite 8-Bit (800 / Incognito)....

 


No mylar crap, cheap tricks, etc. Just a solid chunk of PCB and metal-bracket, with a nice and simple keyboard on top, with proportionally spaced and sized keys (the don't look cartoonish / toyish, like some of the XLs I had with mylar-based keyboards...)

 

This keyboard only comes in a member-limited horde of 800XLs, most of them loaded (as well) with Rev.C MoBos, FULLY socketed, by-the-way...

 

Yes that's the Type 1 "Alps" keyboard. They are superb. We were lucky enough to have this one in our 800XL back in the 80's. These key switches were also used in the 6 million Tandy TRS-80 Model 100 computers.  Notice the same keycaps font on those! I do sometimes wish they had a little more typing resistance.


Edited by Sugarland, Mon Jul 2, 2018 9:03 PM.


#117 _The Doctor__ OFFLINE  

_The Doctor__

    River Patroller

  • 4,246 posts
  • Location:10-0-11-00:02

Posted Mon Jul 2, 2018 8:49 PM

ah we found another use for all those TRS-80 model 100's!   they have always been parts boxes for so many things...



#118 Tezz OFFLINE  

Tezz

    River Patroller

  • 2,373 posts
  • Location:Manchester, England

Posted Tue Jul 3, 2018 3:16 AM

I'm part way through repairing an Alps keyboard that had been punched and broken in half by previous owners in the past.

 

1_keyboard as it arrived.png

2_keyboard as it arrived 2.png

Here's the keyboard in the state it arrived in once removed from the case. The brackets were bent and the PCB was cracked. For some reason the keycaps were also covered in coloured stickers.

 

3_cracked pcb 1.png

You can see the extent of the crack from the underside of the PCB

 

4_cracked pcb 2.png

I removed a couple of switches and wire links so I'd be able to epoxy and clamp the board at it's worst point of damage

 

5_epoxy and clamped 2.png

I couldn't find my clamps so I dug out a small bench vice from the shed after applying the epoxy

 

6_traces exposed.png

Once the glue had cured I scratched away the soldermask on either side of the breaks and exposed the traces. There was a chip in the laminate roughly in the centre but otherwise the PCB came together pretty cleanly.

 

7_final tinned links.png

The next job was to tin the exposed traces and carefully add some strands of copper wire across the breaks. There's still flux on the board in the photo and a few traces left to be done.

 

Everything then checked out on the multimeter. The keycaps cleaned up well and look perfect although I only noticed later that the plastic mount for the spacebar spring was missing... I found this photo online showing the mount on the bottom left. I don't suppose there's much chance of me finding one. It would be another good reason to buy a 3D printer :)

photo of an Alps keyboard.jpg

 

Talking of 3D printing, the console key caps were not present on the keyboard, has anyone tried printing an Alps keycap before? I noticed online that some Alps caps have been modelled already. It would be great if someone was interested in modelling the console keys. I could fabricate the aluminium trim for the keys and anodize them but I don't have access to a 3D printer to finish the job.



#119 flashjazzcat ONLINE  

flashjazzcat

    Quadrunner

  • 13,556 posts
  • Location:United Kingdom

Posted Tue Jul 3, 2018 4:14 AM

Nice work. You can have the spacebar mount off my donor Alps keyboard Tezz. Remind me of your address via PM and I'll post it later in the week.



#120 Tezz OFFLINE  

Tezz

    River Patroller

  • 2,373 posts
  • Location:Manchester, England

Posted Tue Jul 3, 2018 5:20 AM

Great, thanks Jon :thumbsup:



#121 SS OFFLINE  

SS

    Quadrunner

  • 5,961 posts
  • Location:Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania

Posted Tue Jul 3, 2018 6:18 AM

My 800XL has a Type 4 keyboard.  I've always thought that it was a very high quality and comfortable keyboard; it's never given me one lick of trouble in the 33 years that I've owned it.  However, I Have a 600XL on its way to me this week that has a Type 2 keyboard.  I have never had the opportunity to use a Type 2 before so I am very interested in comparing the two types side by side in order to see the differences.  

 

Am I correct in assuming that Type 1 keyboards are most likely to found on Hong Kong produced XLs?  I had been looking at some HK 800XLs on eBay for their socketed motherboards.  With the 600XL coming, it's not a purchase that I will really be needing to make soon but if I can get the two features in one machine then maybe it's something that I want to think about at some point.



#122 SS OFFLINE  

SS

    Quadrunner

  • 5,961 posts
  • Location:Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania

Posted Tue Jul 3, 2018 6:36 AM

As an aside, in 1985 my best friend was the ONLY other person that I knew who owned an Atari computer.  He also had an 800XL but I never like working on his machine as much as I did my own although I never knew quite why.  Somehow his just felt "cheaper" than mine did.  Now, because of this thread, I can theorize that it was because he must have had a Type 5 keyboard vs my Type 4.  It's cool to be able to finally answer a question 33 years later.   



#123 flashjazzcat ONLINE  

flashjazzcat

    Quadrunner

  • 13,556 posts
  • Location:United Kingdom

Posted Tue Jul 3, 2018 7:06 AM

So were those Alps keyboards actually supplied in 800XLs out of the factory? My Alps (like those pictured here, although Tezz's photo is hard to read) has "600XLKB" written on the bottom, and since I can't recall whether it was originally in a 600XL (I've swapped keyboards around somewhat), I wondered if they were 600XL only.

#124 Faicuai OFFLINE  

Faicuai

    Dragonstomper

  • 794 posts
  • Location:Florida, U.S.A.

Posted Tue Jul 3, 2018 7:17 AM

So were those Alps keyboards actually supplied in 800XLs out of the factory? My Alps (like those pictured here, although Tezz's photo is hard to read) has "600XLKB" written on the bottom, and since I can't recall whether it was originally in a 600XL (I've swapped keyboards around somewhat), I wondered if they were 600XL only.

 

Yes, sir... they read 600XL... but they came loaded on the 800XL...

 

One way to spot them is the U.S. batch that had the "Olympics" logo on the front of the box. WITHIN that entire lot, a sub-group of them come from Hong-Kiong Rev.C, and they are guaranteed to have this (special) keyboard.

 

My XL collection boils down to only two (2) 800-XL units, and they are exactly the same, with serial numbers 8,000 units apart. The motherboard is also fully-socketed, and the resistors near the MoBo's keyboard connector are RED, row-shaped, single block (not the stupid-looking, vertically installed, partially-bent resistors you will find in other MoBo variants.). Also, the PCB color is a light, matte green (instead of the bright, glossy version).

 

Those are the signals / cues to know if you are heading home.


  • SS likes this

#125 Faicuai OFFLINE  

Faicuai

    Dragonstomper

  • 794 posts
  • Location:Florida, U.S.A.

Posted Tue Jul 3, 2018 7:19 AM

I'm part way through repairing an Alps keyboard that had been punched and broken in half by previous owners in the past.

 

attachicon.gif1_keyboard as it arrived.png

attachicon.gif2_keyboard as it arrived 2.png

Here's the keyboard in the state it arrived in once removed from the case. The brackets were bent and the PCB was cracked. For some reason the keycaps were also covered in coloured stickers.

 

attachicon.gif3_cracked pcb 1.png

You can see the extent of the crack from the underside of the PCB

 

attachicon.gif4_cracked pcb 2.png

I removed a couple of switches and wire links so I'd be able to epoxy and clamp the board at it's worst point of damage

 

attachicon.gif5_epoxy and clamped 2.png

I couldn't find my clamps so I dug out a small bench vice from the shed after applying the epoxy

 

attachicon.gif6_traces exposed.png

Once the glue had cured I scratched away the soldermask on either side of the breaks and exposed the traces. There was a chip in the laminate roughly in the centre but otherwise the PCB came together pretty cleanly.

 

attachicon.gif7_final tinned links.png

The next job was to tin the exposed traces and carefully add some strands of copper wire across the breaks. There's still flux on the board in the photo and a few traces left to be done.

 

Everything then checked out on the multimeter. The keycaps cleaned up well and look perfect although I only noticed later that the plastic mount for the spacebar spring was missing... I found this photo online showing the mount on the bottom left. I don't suppose there's much chance of me finding one. It would be another good reason to buy a 3D printer :)

attachicon.gifphoto of an Alps keyboard.jpg

 

Talking of 3D printing, the console key caps were not present on the keyboard, has anyone tried printing an Alps keycap before? I noticed online that some Alps caps have been modelled already. It would be great if someone was interested in modelling the console keys. I could fabricate the aluminium trim for the keys and anodize them but I don't have access to a 3D printer to finish the job.

 

You are a really.... brave man.

 

I looked at the circuit-trace soldering... my immediate reaction.... BEAUTIFUL job, there... that's laborious, without mentioning the skill and patience required.

 

:-o  :-o  :thumbsup:  :thumbsup:






0 user(s) are browsing this forum

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users