[vcf-midatlantic] Jan Workshop Report

Chris Fala chrisjpf33 at gmail.com
Mon Jan 14 13:29:08 EST 2019

Primarily worked with Mike P. and his son Brian (sorry if I got the names wrong. I previously communicated with them via the list and coincidentally ran across them while I was a docent. At that time I discovered that Mike is a huge collector of vintage telephone equipment. While not strictly a VCF thing, it is very cool and somewhat related. We got to talking about a 1950ish rotary telephone that I bought on eBay a few years ago because it was the exact model that my grandparents had. I didn’t think it worked because Comcast doesn’t provide a real phone circuit (sort of). Mike brought a line simulator with him and it turns out my phone works perfectly! I enjoyed the sound of the real bell ringer, hope the other attendees did too! :-)

We also tried to diagnose a C64 that he and his son recently acquired. The Commodore didn’t do anything except produce a video sync signal. Didn’t respond to diagnostics cartridge at all. Thanks to Todd for loaning us his Hakko desoldering gun. I removed the PLA chip which was soldered in and installed a socket (thanks Jeff). We tested the chip in a good C64 and proved it was bad. Installing a good PLA didn’t fix the problem, but it was still good experience and at least we confirmed one bad chip.

Definitely time well spent. Perhaps the most productive workshop I attended so far. One of the most enjoyable for sure.

Chris F.

On Jan 14, 2019, at 12:54 PM, Jeffrey Brace via vcf-midatlantic <vcf-midatlantic at lists.vcfed.org> wrote:

The workshop was great. I estimate that on Saturday there was about 20
people there. Lots of things fixed. I started evaluating my many, many C64,
but didn’t get very far. I will get started earlier on Saturday next time
as many people do one day and leave early.

Who else wants to tell what they worked on and fixed?

Jeff Brace
Vice President
Vintage Computer Federation

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