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cybercylon

remaining colecovision issues...

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I recently was able to pick up a colecovision from craigs list. It had the usual issues. I have taken care of some of them, so it works about 95 % of the time, but there are some remaining issues.

 

1. RF noise. More than I am used to seeing with the other consoles from the time. Moving the cord can make it worse or better. I opened up the RF box, and took a picture. Sorry for the quality.

 

I see contacts without solder. Is this normal or should they all be filled in?

 

2. Jiggling the electrical cord, even if just to move the unit, causes it to reset or power off then back on.

 

If I just hook up the board itself with out the shield, plastic, etc, I can jiggle wires to my heart's content and it's fine. This only happens when everything is assembled. Not sure what is happening here.

 

And what works best for replacing the power switch. I assume a DPDT toggle one would work fine.

 

Thanks

Edited by cybercylon

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It's normal. My CV does the same thing with the RF. Just get a better RCA cord and that will fix it. It will make better contact with the jack. The Colecovision is know to be one of the flakiest consoles of all time and the most sensitive to movement. Second being the NES.

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A new RF cable didn't fix it. And the connections in the picture with no solder should have been left that way. Either I'm not strong enough in my soldering skills, or they should be like that. Almost toasted the console. Fortunately, I took that picture of before I started and was able to remove the new solder, restoring my colecovision to it's flakey self instead of a blank screen.

 

I think it is the RF parts inside though. I can make the RF problem worse or better by fiddling with the different contacts, so there might be a bad contact or two. Taking apart the RF unit doesn't look trivial, and is beyond my skills at the moment. And I think the on/off problem is simply losing the picture and not due to the adapter. If I just giggle that alone, nothing happens.

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Look up how to do a conversion to A/V output and you can bypass the fuzzy RF output for clear picture and sound. Maybe you could try hardwiring the PS so it doesn't wiggle. The PS and rf output RCA cable connections become gray with oxidation over the past 25+ years. That can give you a poor connection if you never clean them up. Replace your power switch with a new reliable one if it's a problem. Don't try to fix the old switch or re-grease it.

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cybercylon:

 

I recently too picked up a ColecoVision from Craigslist and mine experienced some video issues on the RF. I took it apart and pulled the cover off othe RF modulator, and noticed the circuit board was no longer soldered to the shielding. I resoldered mine and mine works like a champ now!

 

If that's not your case, it might be worthwhile to go ahead and do an A/V output.... I have not done that yet, but have some plans to do so.

 

Power switch: I had some issues with mine as well. I sprayed some contactor cleaner into the power switched and flipped it on and off rapidly (with power disconnected) and this seemed to remedy the issue.

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cybercylon:

 

I recently too picked up a ColecoVision from Craigslist and mine experienced some video issues on the RF. I took it apart and pulled the cover off othe RF modulator, and noticed the circuit board was no longer soldered to the shielding. I resoldered mine and mine works like a champ now!

 

If that's not your case, it might be worthwhile to go ahead and do an A/V output.... I have not done that yet, but have some plans to do so.

 

Power switch: I had some issues with mine as well. I sprayed some contactor cleaner into the power switched and flipped it on and off rapidly (with power disconnected) and this seemed to remedy the issue.

 

 

My guess is some of the pins that don't have solder on them are to an IC. Hard to tell given that the board that is right underneath the cover is upside down and soldered to the base of the shielding. Looks like they used cheap solder too with a higher Pb (Lead) content as it has a higher melting point than what I am using. That was a good thing actually since I had to "undo" what I did. My guess is that I made things connect that shouldn't be connected.

 

Not skilled enough for the AV mod, and I am not going to try it until I get another console to mess with. Or I'll just send it off to doubledown once certain, ehhmmm, economic things change for the better.

Edited by cybercylon

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I had the same problem with a couple of my CV'S.The problem was in the rf modulator box itself.The solder points inside which make contact with the walls of box from the circuit board were cracked,therefore allowing movement whenever console was even just slightly touched,because of rf cord moving loose rf modulator circuit board.I re-flowed those cracked joints,and no more probs,gamescreen is solid and doesnt break up anymore.

Edited by Rik

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So that solder that is on the outside of the board and makes contact with the lower box actually connects to something? I'm not sure I follow.

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Bleh... now that I have a good picture, the sound is mixed in with TV static. Is it ever possible to win with this bloody console?

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So that solder that is on the outside of the board and makes contact with the lower box actually connects to something? I'm not sure I follow.

I guess,not sure.All i know is i noticed the rf connector on console had play in it while moving the rf cord,thus resulting in the gamescreen breaking up and eventually going blank.I opened up the rf modulator box cover inside the CV and noticed the cracked solder points that hold the curcuit board solidly,and i reflowed the solders,and it fixed the problem.Im not a theory guy just hands on,why this solved the problem,i have no clue.AFAIK,solders are there or done for a reason,and if cracked somethings bound to malfunction.All i know is what i did made the rf connector on console not move anymore,thus fixing the problem.I've done this on 2 of my CV consoles with the same problem solving result.

Edited by Rik

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So that solder that is on the outside of the board and makes contact with the lower box actually connects to something? I'm not sure I follow.

I guess,not sure.All i know is i noticed the rf connector on console had play in it while moving the rf cord,thus resulting in the gamescreen breaking up and eventually going blank.I opened up the rf modulator box cover inside the CV and noticed the cracked solder points that hold the curcuit board solidly,and i reflowed the solders,and it fixed the problem.Im not a theory guy just hands on,why this solved the problem,i have no clue.AFAIK,solders are there or done for a reason,and if cracked somethings bound to malfunction.All i know is what i did made the rf connector on console not move anymore,thus fixing the problem.I've done this on 2 of my CV consoles with the same problem solving result.

 

You are right... those do hold that board into place because the RF board is a daughter card, but that is all they (those solder points on the edges) do. I just toasted the RF board. I thought I had found the area associated with sound output with a bad solder joint, and accidently shorted something. Nice electrical smell from that RF daughter card and no sound. Sigh... learned another way to muck things up.

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