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PE1PQX

Memories (and hardware!)

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HI all,

Today I pulled out a box with my old Atari 800XL, not sure if it still works.
After hooking it up to a TV (PAL), I was happy to see it still does work fb.

Next step was to hook up my XF551 drive and try to boot from it... No luck here. :(
Probably dirty disk-read heads, or the disks have lost their data after 25+ of not the best storage.

Oh, well... there is a project for the future.

My name is André, live in the Netherlands and the Atari 800XL was my first 'BIG' hobby, many fond memories.

Browsing this forum and having a look on FB I learnt many new hardware (after market or home-built), such as SIO2SD etc.
Have to look into that as well....

But first, getting my hobby-room in order, just moved into our new home here.

Thanks!


Edited by PE1PQX
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Welcome back to the Atari, there's loads of help and tips in the Topic for newbies re drives, excuse it being called newbies, its for anyone new or returning after time to the Atari, there's been so many changes in the Atari 8 bit scene as you have found so it gets stored in that topic for all to find easily.

 

The SIO2SD are very handy with a wealth if software in digital form to load up but if getting the XF551 going is what you want you will find LOTS of help for thank from the friendly bunch on here..

 

There's also help with the disks themselves, you may think the data is gone but with a bit of care and a good head clean you may be surprised....Techniques for washing the disks are all here..

 

So welcome André, nice to get another person from the Netherlands on here...

 

Paul...

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Thanks Paul,

Cleaning the head is the next step, a guy on Facebook suggested to check for cold-solder joints. Also a point of interest and checking.

But first to get settled in our new home, just moved in a few weeks ago. Need to set up my hobby-room (I'm a licenced HAM-radio operator, call-sign PE1PQX), antenna tower etc. but that does not have first priority.

Fortunately I can pick up the box, dump it on the kitchen-table and fondle with the Atari. Have 4 800XL units, at least 1 works. (might have a go to get a second or I'f I'm lucky a third one to work also).
I do not know the version of main-board, if the chips are socketed etc. Will have a look much later.
Also the yellowing on the working 800XL is not to bad, no retro-briting required. However the XF551 can use some of it. Also a thing on the extremely long 'to do' list.

Again, thanks for the welcome!

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That's quite a to do list there, I think there some HAM's on here as well (pretty sure)..

 

As long as the XF551 fires up and tries to read a disk then I'd leave the solder look for last, re-seating any socketed chips would be more on a to do first as well as the head, the sleeves of the disks can also get coated with mold etc so there plenty of possibilities...

 

But get yourself settled in first, a home is not a home until its the way you want it.. :)

 

Have fun..

 

Paul..

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But get yourself settled in first, a home is not a home until its the way you want it.. :)

Absolutely true!!

 

Thanks (again!)

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Welcome from me also, these guys are great, I recently came back after many years and they been an enourmous help.

 

Like you I didn't know there was such a vibrant group of users and so many upgrades, emulators etc.

 

I built an SDrive-Max with help from this forum and have just purchased a 1M Ultimate Upgrade and Side 2 Cartridge

for my 130XE (please hurry up Mr Postman)

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Thanks TGB1718,

Thinking of getting an 130xe also, but first try to get my XF551 working again.
The SDrive-MAX looks interesting, so does de SIO2SD, however the guy in Poland asks pretty high postage price keeping me from buying (for now)

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Welcome (back) to the Atari world!

TNX skr, I found that list this week, looks good and not to expensive.

Both Lotharek and tf_hh have top-notch products, service and packaging. I am still waiting for the little extra board for my SDrive Max but I think it's easier to set up with the larger screen. Be sure to check out ABBUC, too. The biggest Atari club in the world with a quarterly magazine and a software and hardware competition every year.

A nice way to get back into things is to take part in the BASIC tenliners compo which usually ends around Easter (but wiser people than me seem to program all year round to have many entries ready).

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Hello Andre

 

Maybe you can enter that into your profile?

 

I was asking because of a couple of Atari meetings in Germany that last a couple of days. You missed one in Lübeck (NOMAM), there will be one in Kellenbach (H.A.T.Z.) in two weeks and in the last week of August, we have one in 08485 Lengenfeld. (You'll find more information about these meetings on my Atari meetings page.)

 

Sincerely

 

Mathy (who drives approximately 6, 2.25 and 6 hours to get to those meetings. Not counting any stops, traffic jams, etc. and not counting picking up Luckybuck. And that's one way.)

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Also the yellowing on the working 800XL is not to bad, no retro-briting required. However the XF551 can use some of it. Also a thing on the extremely long 'to do' list.

 

Again, thanks for the welcome!

 

Welcome back André!! Regarding retrobrighting, this video is of great interest. This seems much safer/less risky and is easier on the plastic.

 

 

TLDR - direct sunlight retrobrights very well. Won't work through a window since glass filters UV-B.

 

In a way, A8 is more fun than ever since it using them is optional and we have modern tech if we want that, unlike the 80's or early 90's.

Edited by Sugarland

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@Mathy I am not into meetings (yet), also I do not own a car to drive to one. For now I also to busy with other way more important things.

 

@Sugarland: thanks, found that also. But hat is for future 'to do', might clean the heads first today to see if the disks reads now.

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Hi Andre,

I am also from the Netherlands and since last year I started again with Atari 8 bit. I also found a XF551 diskdrive and it doesn't work well, so I will follow this topic and maybe it also can help me to get it in a working state.

 

I have the SIO2SD and I am very satisfied with it, the device is easy to use.

Edited by Martin72
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I have ordered parts for the SDrive-MAX, will see how it turns out.
Will try to clean the head in the future, of if required resolder the joints on the PCB.
But firstly re-install my hobby-room and find my solder-iron.

 

My A800XL has been stored for over 25 years in boxes, so also some corrosion ('rust') might have developed on the heads also, if possible...

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Okay... I got my hands on an Atari 1050 drive from Germany, but is shows the same issue as the XF551.
have to look into the 800XL instead I guess...
Already saw that all the chips are socketed. Might pull them out one-by-one and reseat them.
(have to find my IC-pulling tools somewhere in the moving-boxes...)

 

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Haha.. if you have the right tools, use it wisely...

(I know a small screwdriver works also, but it also can ruin a chip at its legs)

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It can but the sort of people levering up that badly should not be near the insides of a computer in the first place :)

 

Never had a chip puller even though I sold them, always did the balanced side 2 side lever with a jewellers screwdriver.....

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I agree with you... with (old!) chips, you can never be to carefull lifting them out of any socket. Better safe than sorry is my motto.
Also using small screwdrivers can damage the socket and/or ant traces underneath if you're not careful enough.

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Chip pullers are a thing of beauty, as are pin alignment straighteners. I only wish mine were still with me. When they stole all the ST stuff they got a box of tools as well I have only two pullers left. and only on of those is dip... wonder if they can be replaced inexpensively.

Edited by _The Doctor__
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Any vectors to a good IC puller? I have some tools that I thought to be chip pullers but they don't really fit.

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Chip pullers are a thing of beauty, as are pin alignment straighteners. I only wish mine were still with me. When they stole all the ST stuff they got a box of tools as well I have only two pullers left. and only on of those is dip... wonder if they can be replaced inexpensively.

They are, if you have them. I agree, they're better, but I have never damaged a chip by CAREFULLY using 2 small screwdrivers.

:)

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