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About pollyisagoodbird

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  1. By 'the other side', do you mean behind? My current setup has everything side-by-side, the monitor on the left, then the Commodore, then the disk drive, with several inches between each. I don't think spacing or position is an issue, since all the other disks I have work fine. I wonder if it could just be bad disks, but I'm not sure how to test that out.
  2. Interesting! I didn't know that. I did read somewhere about CRTs and how they mess with disks, so I do make an effort to keep a good distance between the monitor and drive - about the width and a half of the Commodore itself.
  3. So I cracked the drive open and...well, it's pretty filthy on the back end. But the read/write head, however, is perfectly fine. I cleaned it off anyway, but I still have the same issues with Wolfenstein and Back to the Future 2. I'm wondering if there's anything else I can do to see if it's a bad disk issue besides sending the disks out to someone with a drive. I should note that I did not clean off the board, I'm going to have someone else do that and test the traces and whatnot, so I won't be using the drive again until I get that taken care of. I also forgot to mention that when I purchased this Commodore and everything else, it did NOT have a head protector card in it, and went along with me for an hour drive. At the time I had no idea that they needed it, so I'm wondering if maybe the head got knocked around too much.
  4. That's reassuring; every time I hear that noise I wonder if the drive is going bad. It probably shouldn't be doing that with Wolfenstein, which is why I keep getting errors. I'll be dismantling by 1541 today, but there's a surprising lack of tutorials on youtube for the specific model I have. Mine had that knob you turn downwards to keep the disk in place. It seems like everyone else has the other model with the spring-loaded door.
  5. I hope it's as simple as that, I'll update once I get to it.
  6. I've been in possession of a C64 with a 1541 drive for a while now, with very little complaints. However recent games I have purchased for it are making me question if I have bad disks or a stubborn drive. When I began using the drive for the first time - probably the first time the drive has been used in years - it would take 3-4 tries per disk in order to get it working. I even had a mint in the box copy of Space Harrier that I had to try loading a handful of times before it would work. But this would happen with a small handful of disks until they started loading on the first try, and they have been ever since. Most of the disks I've acquired loaded perfectly the first time I took a look at them. However, I'm somewhat concerned about certain disks I have, and I'm not sure if the drive is being stubborn, or if the disks are going bad. Here's what I've documented so far: Ghostbusters - Game works perfectly fine, but on the "Activision" load screen, the drive makes loud grinding / clicking noises, the kind it makes if you try to load a disk and you get a disk read error on the DOS screen. It makes this noise twice, then it goes silent for a while, then it makes it one last time a few moment before the title screen appears. I assumed it was normal, but now not so much. The game loads and plays perfectly fine, so I wasn't sure if it was part of the loading process or not. It's not a pleasant sound, regardless. Back to the Future Part 2 - I am able to get the title screen to load, with the intro animation and music, but when I hit the fire button, the screen goes into that color-changing loading state before it goes white. I can hear the disk spinning, but the head stops moving. It spins for a good few minutes before stopping altogether, leaving me locked on the white screen. A couple of times the screen went from white to black, but other than the color change, zero difference was made in how the drive behaved. Today I decided to try it again, and while it got stuck on the white screen, the drive kept on spinning. Another try brought me back to the DOS screen, which remained completely blank. Castle Wolfenstein: game appears to run fine, but I think I get a clue as to what's up with the disk drive. When I start a new game, on the second text intro screen, the drive makes that clicking noise, but only for a moment. The drive stops completely and at the bottom I get: Disk Error #20 read error, 30,16 Press any key to RETRY Luckily I got my hands on the 1541 manual...it says #20 means "Block header not found", so I assume memory blocks 30 and 16 are unreadable for one reason or another After pressing a key, then the game loads / plays normally. I played through the first few screens and tried to save the game, which did not work. The drive does the same thing as it did when loading a new game, making that momentary clicking noise, and then stopping. I get the following: Disk Error # ...which I find odd, since this gives me no reference number. Loading a previous save is like a dark joke, it appears to load normally, but what I get is a blank room. No doors, keys, or anything. Just you all by yourself, with ten bullets and a grenade. Kinda creepy. So yeah, I'm not sure what's going on, but I want to at least have an idea before I decide to dismantle the whole thing.
  7. So I'll be buying an upright, full-size Super Pac-Man machine locally (within minutes of where I live, thank goodness), and need some tips on transporting it. I plan on using a minivan (specifically a late-model Kia Sedona with stow-and-go seats), but am incredibly skeptical about the machine's safety, particularly with the load / unload process. I've seen posts of folks saying it's okay to transport the machine on its back, but no posts explaining a how-to porcess to get the machine in and out of the van without dropping one end. So I have a small list of questions I've compiled: *Should I wrap it up before transporting it? And if so, with what? The van's floor is carpeted. *Will it be easy to get in and out of the van? It's a standard minivan, but my concern is loading it in at an angle, since the top end will have to go in first, so I wonder how easy it will be to put it in and out of the trunk. I'm assuming the heaviest part is the monitor. *Will a standard dolly work, or do I have to get something specific? I live on the ground floor, so I'll just roll it through my sliding glass door. *The carpet of my apartment is pretty plush. Out it be worth getting plastic sliders to stick on the bottom of the cabinet, in case I want to swap out boards and need to move it away fro the wall? Will this depreciate its value? Any and all suggestions I'd love to hear. Thank you!
  8. I'll shoot him a message and say you sent me. Thank you!
  9. I have a laundry list of Atari, Nintendo, and Sega stuff lol. What I'd love to see in the forums is an entire section dedicated to not only repairs, but a comprehensive list of users that are willing and able to fix things, also listing what they're experience is and where they're located.
  10. I wasn't sure if this would be the right place to post, but I was wondering if there was a way to get in contact with folks that did game repairs. I have quite a few things I want to have fixed, and just don't have the time or resources to do it myself.
  11. So recently I purchased an Atari XE game and cleaned it the best I could with 100% rubbing alcohol and a white artist's eraser. I could not get the game to boot, so after looking around, I noticed some folks saying they soak the game contacts in vinegar to help remove corrosion. I'm currently soaking my cart's contacts in vinegar as I type this up, and will wait about 15 minutes overall before I remove it and dry it. So, when using vinegar, should I use regular distilled vinegar, or get industrial strength, non-diluted vinegar? The regular stuff from the store contains water, so I assume that would negate the helpful effects of the vinegar? I' not what you call a chemist, so I wouldn't have the faintest idea if this even will work in the long run lol
  12. Back in 2015, I was granted permission to access the property of an old mini-golf fun center that had been sitting abandoned for nearly three years at that point in time. The fun center had operated from 1992 - 2012, when the owners defaulted on taxes and the place shut down for good. For my photography class final I decided to do an urban exploration piece, and I was EXTREMELY lucky to walk into the vacant relic of one of my favorite childhood places. Upon walking in, I was shocked to see that there were three games left, pushed into a corner of the game room. One of which was a Ms. Pac-Man machine, which I played time and again whenever I visited. However, I always wondered why it looked so...different. The cabinet, for one, is MASSIVE. The screen, from what I can recall, was far bigger than the arcade original, though it was still a vertical upright monitor. This game also possessed the speed chip, which if my memory is correct, was not added until sometime between my childhood and teenage years. I recall the game running at normal speed when I was a kid, though I could be wrong. But the cabinet itself has always intrigued me. Despite having "MIDWAY" plastered across the top above the screen, I wondered if this cabinet was actually a super-rare bootleg of sorts. I do know the control panel art is original Pac-Man art from a company called Willis (see below) So I have several theories on what this actual machine might be: 1. A official re-release by Midway in the 1990s, using leftover cabinets from other games they produced in an effort to liquidate unsold boards. 2. The cabinet itself is one where the owners can easily switch out arcade boards to classic games they have lying around, just to swap out a game from time to time and keeps their inventory fresh-ish, possibly made by Midway in the 90s. 3. The entire thing, board included, IS a bootleg game, though this wouldn't make much sense as the company that made it would have certainly been sued by Midway for using their logo in stickers. Does anyone else have any ideas? I'd love to hear them, and if anyone else has seen something like this out in the wild before. Before I left, I stuck a note with my contact information to whoever purchased the property in order to buy the game from them if they choose to sell it.
  13. That's probably not a bad hypothesis. Oddly enough this one works like it's brand new.
  14. I recently bought a boxed 5200 controller, and upon inspection of the box, I noticed it had a very late copyright date of 1987. That got my wondering...was Atari still trying to sell 5200s long after they were discontinued? Or was this just a matter of having so much excess inventory after the crash of 1983 that they still packaged and sold their obsolete merchandise in hopes folks would buy it? I just think it's kind of weird to see this being sold during the days of Nintendo Entertainment Systems dominating the market, all while Atari puts all hope into the flailing 7800.
  15. Today I recieved Atariage's Super Pacman homebrew, and while playing it I discovered a glitch on the left side of the maze. Running over a certain spot triggers the key collecting sound effect and adds points, despite there being no key there. Is that a glitch in the original game's code, or just my copy? 20200320_215435.mp4
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