Hi All

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Hi All

Postby wildstar1063 » Tue May 26, 2009 12:00 am

Hi every one,

I was on the other board, but I just got signed up for this one today.

Back in 1985 I got my first PCjr, and by the time I sold it it had a Racore drive 2 Expansion and
and SPC 20 meg hard drive, a thin font ROM and several mods including the Tandy mod and my own
version of the reset switch mod. and I had the PCjr Speech attachment. I sold all of this in the late 80's
or early 90's to help finance my first Amiga computer.

My current PCjr is one that was given to me by a friend who was a member of our PCjr club at the time,
and about 4 years ago, he was going through his attic and found the jr and was going to trash it if I
would not take it, so I took pitty on it and brought it home, and stuck it in my outside storage barn
thinking I was going to get it going, but never did. This last week, I finally brought it in and started cleaning it up,
It has the reset MOD and the Tandy Mod and a Racore Drive 2 unit with maxed out ram and DMA, but my friend stripped the jr
and the Racore unit of the drives, so I'll have to look on ebay for a 5 1/4 for the jr and a 3.5 for the Racore unit. It also came
with a PCjr speech attachment. what I am going to miss is not having my 20 meg (20 megs used to be big, but I have files
bigger than that now.) hard drive. I guess I'll have to see if I can find a Parallel ZIP drive for mass storage.

The Jr was setting in my friends attic and in my storage barn in the heat for so long, I may have to replace all of the
electrolytic caps in the JR, the racore, and all of the power bricks, as heat will evaporate the electrolyte.

2 years ago I was also given a Quadram drive 2 unit (it looks like the RACORE, but does not have the DMA Option), it also
has maxed out ram, so I guess I have a spare for the drive 2 unit if it does not work.

I have alot of vintage computers, I still have my TRS-80 model I with expansion interface and disk drives, and an Amiga
3000 and an Amiga 3000 tower, and an Amiga 600HD. also several Timex Sinclair 1000's I have picked up over the years,
and an old Mac SE30, oh yeah and a COSMAC ELF that I built from a Popular electronics article when I was in 8th grade.

Any how I look forward to talking to the members here about PCjr stuff. I used to run a BBS just for my friends off my jr
on the weekends, If I can get it up and running, and fugure out how to set it up on a network, I might setup one of those
dos bbs programs that works with telnet.

Have a good one

Chuck E.
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon May 25, 2009 8:49 pm

Re: Hi All

Postby Brutman » Wed May 27, 2009 7:44 am

Hi Chuck,

Welcome back!

I've seen the SPC Disk-It kits in the newsletters but have never bumped into one. Was it smart enough to serve as the boot drive for the machine, or did you still have to boot from a floppy?

My other non-IBM machines are the Timex Sinclair 1000 and a Tandy TRS-80 Model IV. The Timex was my first machine and it is in rough shape, so I need to get it usable again. Besides the keyboard ribbon cables being bad I don't have a proper television to use as a display anymore. The Tandy is being restored - it has keyboard problems. The COSMAC ELF is a great little trainer - saw my first one last year.

If you want to connect to telnet BBSes from the Jr use NCSA Telnet - it works very well. If you want to run a telnet BBS on the Jr for other people to connect into, check back in about six months - I'm getting closer on the one that I'm working on.

Site Admin
Posts: 911
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 5:03 pm

Re: Hi All

Postby wildstar1063 » Wed May 27, 2009 4:39 pm


The SPC unit booted from the floppy, the you did a "Set Comspec= C:\command.com" to switch to the
hard drive, and not have to keep the boot disk in. In SPC AD's they were supposed to come out with a
cartridge that would let you boot from the HD, but they never did.

I'll look in my box of TS-1000 stuff and see if I can find one for you, the Model 1 was my first computer, but I
had great fun with the TS-1000 too. If I remember correctly the video out on the 1000, can be plugged directly
in to any monitor or television with the yellow video in RCA Jack.

The model 4, is a great catch, those were nice machines, if I remember they even had a "Hi Res" monochrome
graphics card as an option. There are two models of that machine one is more desirable than the other, I seem
to remember that you can tell the difference by the keyboard layout, but I cant remember what the difference is.
If you need software or manuals try Ira Goldking's site http://www.trs-80.com/ he has copys of most software
and OS's that you can download.

I still have to figure out how to hook the JR up to a network, the only NIC I remember is a
Sidecar for IBM's Token Ring networking, but I dont think these are compatable with today's
networking standards.

Chuck E.
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon May 25, 2009 8:49 pm

Re: Hi All

Postby Brutman » Wed May 27, 2009 5:55 pm

I think that my TS-1000 works, but I definitely need to do something about the keyboard. I remember way back when there were third party keyboards from Memotech (or something like that) that had the same layout, but featured real keys. It's a project for a cold winter ... I thought that the output was RF only, not composite. Now I'm going to have to do some research to see if I can use a composite monitor, either directly or through a modification

The Model IV is a beauty. I think I have the non PAL chip version. Mine was almost fully loaded from the factory - 128K, serial and parallel ports, and 2 floppy drives. But it does not have a hi-res graphics board in it. The contacts on the bottom of the rubber domes in the keyboard are not conductive enough anymore, but I did some research and found out that there are kits for fixing remote control keypads that will work. That is the good news - the bad news is that there are 70 keys, each with four solder points that you have to desolder before you can get access to the keyswitch mechanism and the rubber dome inside. It's not trivial.

The best solution to put a Jr on Ethernet is to find a Xircom PE3-10BT. That is a parallel-port to Ethernet adapter that was designed for early laptops, but works well on any machine with a parallel port. I use them all of the time for the Jr, PC and XT - it has the advantage of being easy to install and remove. It is not as fast as a real Ethernet card because of the limitations of the parallel port, but it is convenient and for the Jr there really are no other practical choices. Get the Xircom and I can help you with the software setup to get online. (My own DHCP, FTP and IRC clients work very well on the Jr.)

The sidecar you remember is the IBM Cluster Network adapter. Those are interesting critters - they resemble Ethernet, but are much lower speed. Unfortunately, they are not compatible with anything else except the ISA version of the same card. It is effectively a dead end. I know that Brian Heise had an AST sidecar that probably implemented Arcnet or something similar, but I've never seen one of those in person.
Site Admin
Posts: 911
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 5:03 pm

Re: TS-1000 Composite/RF (Was Hi All)

Postby wildstar1063 » Wed May 27, 2009 8:54 pm


The output of the Standard TS-1000, is RF, not video. The output of MY TS-1000 is both Composite and RF.
Years ago I did a mod from a book called "The Explorers guide to the ZX-81 and Timex Sinclair 1000", that
adds composit output, it's been so long, I forgot it was a mod. I have not had the TS-1000's out in about a year.

Any how the mod is real simple it uses a 2N221 transistor 2 1N4148 diodes and a 33 ohm and a 100 ohm resistor.
it ties on to 3 spots on the motherboard. mine is built on a small piece of pref board mounted inside the case, with an
RCA jack for the composite mounted on the back of the TS-1000

Chuck England
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon May 25, 2009 8:49 pm

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