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Looking for Quality Refurbished Commodore 64

Know a source?

13 replies to this topic

#1 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:14 AM

If I want a quality refurbished Atari 8-bit computer, then I'd buy one from Best Electronics. An Atari 800XL costs about $100. That's not cheap, but at least you know what you're getting.

My C64 died and I can't find anyplace that sells refurbished Commodore 64 computers in the Unites States (or anywhere, for that matter). Sure, I can find a used unit on Ebay, but with shipping a base unit still sells for about $50. With the popularity of the C64 computer, it seems like someone, somewhere in the U.S. must sell refurished units or a reasonable price.

Any ideas?

Adam

#2 thegamezmaster ONLINE  

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Posted Sun Mar 18, 2012 10:14 AM

Yeah shipping with a power supply sucks. Like shipping a cement block.

#3 Mirage OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:04 AM

If it's a stock PS, tell them to chuck it in the garbage to save shipping costs and get a good one instead. I have no idea who sells refurbs if anyone. I'd sort of be surprised if anyone would since used ones are still relatively common and cheap. Shocking to me if they're $50 shipped on ebay since they're so common on CL (at least here) and still hard to practically give away. I would recommend redoubling efforts on finding a couple used ones locally (wait for cheap ones or ones in lots where you can make money) and forget refurb. I'm still not buying into any sort of talk about standard C64's being close to rare, valuable, or hard to find yet, and this is coming from someone who has a number of them, so I wish it were true, or that I was into taking advantage of people who think they are.

#4 Seob OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:42 AM

The only valuable c64 stuff is the c64gs and the sx-64.

#5 Mirage OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:45 AM

Exactly. And to a certain extent, the 128D, if you want to lump that in with the 64 (I do, since I don't care about 128 mode). Anyone paying $50 for a regular c64 is loco or lazy.

#6 save2600 OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:49 AM

Yeah, you should be able to pick a C64 up for $20-$30 tops and I bet it would be fine. If it's not in the greatest cosmetic shape, yank the motherboard out of it and swap it with your bad one.

Not much to the refurbishment of these outside of cleaning 'em up, reseating any socketed chips (not all revisions even have socketed chips) and taking some contact cleaner to the keys. Power supply may go bad, but no biggy - they're a dime a dozen. Bridge rectifier on the motherboard is protected by a fuse too... which reminds me... did you check the fuse? It may have blown if the power supply went bad. You may just need a new/different power supply and a good fuse!

#7 20ohm20 OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Mar 18, 2012 8:05 PM

The last "working" C64 I bought from eBay was actually the victim of a botched repair job. It looks like the previous owner socketed/replaced a few IC's and didn't do a very good job. The C64 itself worked...but the slightest movement, including anything but the lightest touch on the keyboard, with the power on would cause the computer to lock up. After much hunting, found the problem to be a poorly soldered socket, which has since been repaired.

I'm also looking for another C64 myself to clean up and give to a friend. Just posted a WTB post in the Marketplace, in fact...

#8 SEgamer OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:20 AM

I think 3 out of the 5 C64s I've had over the last couple of years worked, which is probably around the average of working to non-working (maybe higher). The first one I bought surprisingly worked even coming from a smoker's home. Then I bought 4 from another guy who had stockpiles of computer stuff (he scrapped it all a few weeks later :( ). The best one out of all of them was the early grey version. The keys responded very well and I had no hiccups with that one compared to the tan/brown ones. (good choice of color to go along with reliability :P)

#9 Seob OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 19, 2012 2:00 PM

Only 1 of the 4 c64's i have has trouble with the keyboard. A few keys don't respond. Have to check what is the problem. The others i got work perfect.

#10 Mark Wolfe OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 19, 2012 6:28 PM

my experience is that if you search long enough, ebay will be your best bet unless you find someone local on craigslist. I'd be on the lookout both places until you find one for your price range. meanwhile you can sell the parts out of your old c64, the sid chip alone can sell for as much as $50 sometimes to wacky buyers who don't know better. the power supply, the keyboard, etc.. you may in fact find that once you finish selling all the parts, you have enough in paypal to buy a whole new setup :)

#11 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 20, 2012 7:56 AM

unless you find someone local on craigslist.


I did post again on craigslist. I got two bites this time from two different local people that have C64s. One was VERY vague, but I responded anyway. The other person was selling more of a complete setup and wanted me to buy a Vic-20 with it. I responded to that one too. Strangely, I never heard anything back from either of them.

you can sell the parts out of your old c64


I'll save the parts in my C64 in case I need them for later. I did make a deal to purchase a refurbished PAL board from a member of this forum. I've never owned a PAL machine before, so it means that I'll be hooking it up to my Amiga monitor.

the power supply [can be sold]


I tested the PS with my multimeter: it is dead. I bought a new homebrew PS on Ebay, but the C64 is actually dead too (the red light comes on, but that's it). I didn't test the fuse (as recommended above), but I plan to do that soon. If the fuse does fix the trouble, then I'll be looking for a dead C64 so that I can put the PAL motherboard into it.

Thanks to everyone for responding to this post. I didn't expect to get so much feedback. I'll be sure to follow-up with whatever the resolution turns out to be.

Adam

#12 R.Cade OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 20, 2012 8:02 AM

I did post again on craigslist. I got two bites this time from two different local people that have C64s. One was VERY vague, but I responded anyway. The other person was selling more of a complete setup and wanted me to buy a Vic-20 with it. I responded to that one too. Strangely, I never heard anything back from either of them.


Typical craiglist people. They just disappear. It's really annoying...

Also, the vague ones are just spam. If you get mail like "Do you stil have the item?" it is e-mail harvester. Don't reply. You can usually tell if they actually read your ad or not. :)

Edited by R.Cade, Tue Mar 20, 2012 8:14 AM.


#13 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 20, 2012 10:35 AM

I didn't test the fuse [...], but I plan to do that soon.


I checked the fuse and it looks fine. It also checks good with my multimeter-- which is the real test of course.

I somehow broke off the zero key on the keyboard either when I was putting the C64 back in the box last week or when I was shuffling the box around this past weekend cleaning out the garage. I hoped that the key had just popped off, but no, it did break off. I found the broken key and the spring in the box (and a piece of plastic that broke off the key too, so it's not a clean break).

I can't think of a good way to reattach the key to the keyboard. I've looked around on the net, but I can't figure-out which is the best glue to use to try to reattach the key. Maybe super glue gel would work, but I somehow doubt it. The plastic SEEMS to be made of a PVC-like plastic. Should plumber's glue be used? I priced a few broken C64s on Ebay and, with shipping, it isn't worth it to buy them (they are around $35). Also, each of the broken C64s had at least one broken key (just not the zero key).

Adam

#14 20ohm20 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 20, 2012 11:41 AM

I can't think of a good way to reattach the key to the keyboard.


I've never had good luck at fixing broken C64 keys. The break seems to always be flush with the bottom of the key and I'm unable to pull the broken piece of plunger out without causing further damage. Nine times out of ten, I end up opening the keyboard and replacing the plunger (and the key itself).




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