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130XE Repair: Bad RAM, motherboard variations

32 replies to this topic

#26 deffroe OFFLINE  


    Combat Commando

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Posted Mon Feb 27, 2017 8:02 AM

Sugarland You are the man!


Never in a million years would I have thought, "No power light, it must be the keyboard!".


I connected it to the TV and low and behold up pops the READY prompt  :)


Still the same, No response to any key press including RESET.


If there is anyone on here from the UK can you recommend anywhere where I can get a replacement keyboard mylar?


Thanks again to everyone who has responded,  I'm feeling happier just knowing my 130XE is not dead.


I'm off to scour Ebay for a while in search of keyboards.



#27 tf_hh OFFLINE  



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Posted Tue Feb 28, 2017 1:49 AM

- Failed post - Deleted -

Edited by tf_hh, Tue Feb 28, 2017 1:50 AM.

#28 deffroe OFFLINE  


    Combat Commando

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Posted Sat Mar 18, 2017 10:21 AM



Slowly but Shirley!! 


Made enquiries to Best Electronics about a 130XE Mylar but to get one shipped over to

the UK is a bit pricey so decided to try the cheaper option first.


I bought some conducting silver and have been inspecting the mylar and touching up where 

it looks like there is a break.


I've gone from ZERO keys working to a working RESET and LED!!!  :)

Got a few keys working too but oddly some keys display other characters.

2 & 3 work but the 3 displays a 2, 0(zero) display <. (full stop ...) displays /


Guessing that some of the silver is jumping over another track of the maylar.


Another couple of tries and touch ups and hopefully I'll have a fully working keyboard again.



#29 tjlazer OFFLINE  


    River Patroller

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Posted Sun Mar 19, 2017 7:57 AM

also the ribbon cable connector can get flaky where it inserts into the motherboard.  You can usually pull it out a little to get a better connection.

#30 1050 OFFLINE  



  • 1,028 posts

Posted Sun Mar 19, 2017 1:19 PM

Can't possibly find it these days, but I once saved to a text
file a diatribe from an old school BBS style forum where the
email replies were stacked one over the other with headers
in between. At any rate, the subject was the 'new' fix for
bad mylars in the recent XE line and the fix was to let it
oxidize as much as it was going to and then use a resistor
bridge to determine the value of a parallel resistor for that
mylar trace that would make it work on all keys for that trace.
Then solder that value resistor onto the stock one, paralleling
it to an oxidized value.

In essence it was to make the resistor pack of such a value
as to now work with the mylar that you have. I've never
tried this simplistic approach but the replies he got to that
post indicated that he was a life saver and this was the
greatest post of all time and he would certainly be rich
and famous.

Despite the misplace accolades, it could still work?
I do have the bridge for this, but I'm still not set up to
find a bad mylar and give it decent test myself. eBay was
selling a modern day bridge using 1% precision chip resistors
as a school project went viral as they say. $40 IIRC.
Bridge isn't the proper term, it's a resistor substitution
box where you dial in the resistance you want by operating
several rotary switches.

#31 _The Doctor__ ONLINE  

_The Doctor__


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Posted Thu Apr 13, 2017 5:42 PM

Ah one of my old posts and fixes...the original box was a decade resistance box....and in fact I give the technical tidbits in another post somewhere on here....




ah such ramblings, the post could use a clean up and some more detail I guess... I wouldn't mind at all if someone follows the procedure across the key range just select the lowest value of your findings and put that across the lot and look at simius fix as well. Pictures and process posted as you go.

I've posted a number of other places and times depending on my memory and thoughts as well as last time I did this the values usually settled within a range as time marched on... I am sure a couple people will clue us in.... I like to keep some resistance in the mix no dead shorting....


_T D__ proud member or the former ABE's ACE's and LVAUG

Contributer to the Atari Computer Users Technical Exchange BBS / Sysop of Starship a support BBS, and Co-sys of same as well as Parallel Dimension a both fun & technical Atari BBS.


p.s. I searched out a decade project kit for you.... however these can be had even more cheaply, it will get the job done....I couldn't imagine being without one back in the day....


Edited by _The Doctor__, Thu Apr 13, 2017 6:17 PM.

#32 _The Doctor__ ONLINE  

_The Doctor__


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Posted Thu Apr 13, 2017 7:25 PM

memory lane,




some other stuff just searching about


and John's post about rtime8 battery... he forgot to give the item number for the holder..

A worn-out battery in the R-time can cause some problems with certain programs. Several months ago, we tracked down a problem to a weak battery, even though the R-time still kept perfect time. We found that replacement solder type batteries were impossible to find. The solution?? Replace your worn out battery with a socket and buy replacement batteries at the local Radio Shack. I have tried several different battery holders and the best one found was from Bogen Communications, Inc. It is a 24mm diameter Coin Cell Holder and is available from Digi- Key Corporation. A good replacement battery is available at Radio Shack. It is a Lithium Battery, part number CR2430 at a cost of $1.99, the total cost of replacement is less than $3.50. The replacement socket adds just a little too much height to close the cart fully. The solution to this is easy with the Bogen socket, just file a little plastic from each of the three stand-offs on the socket and it fits perfectly!! I have installed three of them so far with no problems. P.S. Some sockets which will fit the replacement cells, will not fit the R-Times properly. They could require much more modifications than the one listed.

Edited by _The Doctor__, Thu Apr 13, 2017 7:30 PM.

#33 deffroe OFFLINE  


    Combat Commando

  • 9 posts

Posted Sat Jun 10, 2017 9:35 AM

Been a few weeks since I've really been able to spend any more time with my 130XE, 

but just wanted to say thanks for comments of help and to just make a note of my progress really.


Did another sweep of the maylar, cleaning up where I'd been previously and adding more silver

where I thought there was a break.


So when it came to powering up, some of the repeating keys, 2 worked and 3 gave a 2 etc...same on a few other.

This time some of those repeaters had gone as had some previously working keys BUT more importantly I got

a full set of option keys working..woohooo!  Which means I was able to do a Self Test.


Looks like it is and only is a dodgy mylar.  RAM Test passed with flying colours, sound test worked as expected.


So looks like when I've run out of silver and keyboards still not working i'm gonna have to buy a new mylar.



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