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Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 7:16 pm
by thefool1983
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Found this old (circa ~1986) BBC Master in my mother's roof space.

A bit of history: my father (sadly no longer with us) was an IT teacher at a local secondary school and he rescued this machine and quite a few periphals when the school were disposing of out dated hardware.

I have been meaning for sometime now to try and get it up and running for the first time since about 1997.

My dad had shown me certain things about these old machines back in the day and I knew the CMOS battery back up can fail on these. So I set about replacing. There was a little corrosion but not too much.

I followed the guide here:http://lionels.orpheusweb.co.uk/CompNyb ... onfig.html
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Then plugged in and managed to get one disc loaded using my limited memory of BBC keyboard functions (ctrl + A + BREAK)
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Oh, I also had to fiddle with the disc drive. Disconnected the internal power connector and reseated. Before the unit would power up.
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My future plans are to get some more of the other kit from the roofspace and get it workin also. Ultimately I would like my kids to experience some of the fun I had on this tech when I was a lad.

Hope this interests a few & brings a bit of nostalgia as it does for me.

Cheers
Kev

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 7:27 pm
by Multiwizard
Hi Kev,

welcome to this great Forum... :D


Greetings from my little Dutch Atom Attic, Wim... :-)

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 7:52 pm
by Lardo Boffin
Nice job. Another beeb brought back to life!

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 8:25 pm
by CMcDougall
welcome Kev :)

looks like you also have a econet board on it too (top right) so that's a bonus!

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 8:30 pm
by flaxcottage
Welcome, Kev. :D

Nice tool bench by the way. One thing, is the monkey wrench essential for computer maintenance? :lol:

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 8:41 pm
by thefool1983
Thanks guys
CMcDougall wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 8:25 pm
[welcome Kev :)

looks like you also have a econet board on it too (top right) so that's a bonus!
I noticed that. But have no idea the capability or function of an econet!
flaxcottage wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 8:30 pm
Welcome, Kev. :D

Nice tool bench by the way. One thing, is the monkey wrench essential for computer maintenance? :lol:
Well spotted. The garage is the designated area for my "various useless projects" as the wife would see them!

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 9:04 pm
by daveejhitchins
Welcome to the Forum, Kev . . . Enjoy . . .

Looking forward to see what else you have in the loft :wink:

Dave H :D

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 10:33 pm
by SimonSideburns
Have you replaced the capacitors in the power supply? If not, you will at some point (unless it has already done so) fill the garage with magic smoke.

Various people on ebay and here sell kits of the three capacitors along with instructions.

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 11:33 pm
by tricky
Welcome,
While you are getting things working, you can take a trip down memory lane at bbcmicro.co.uk and maybe have a look at the new hardware available for your "beeb". You might like to start with a look at GOTEKs as you have a working disc controller.

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:52 pm
by davidb
Welcome! :D

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Sat Jan 12, 2019 1:59 pm
by DutchAcorn
Welcome! And good luck with your Master and the rest of the treasures!

If your floppies are mostly ADFS formatted it may be convenient to configure the filing system to default to ADFS instead of DFS. Use

Code: Select all

*configure file 13
To do that.

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 7:00 am
by flowsnake
Great to see the old machine back in action!

To echo the comments above definitely consider replacing capacitors asap. They have a limited lifespan and tend to fail in unexpected and exciting ways.

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 9:15 am
by thefool1983
flowsnake wrote:
Sun Jan 13, 2019 7:00 am
Great to see the old machine back in action!

To echo the comments above definitely consider replacing capacitors asap. They have a limited lifespan and tend to fail in unexpected and exciting ways.
Thanks to all for the advice.

I will look into the capacitor replacement asap
I think I need to give the disc drive a bit of a clean also. Seem to be getting random errors on discs that were previously working

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 9:18 am
by tricky
The caps shouldn't kill it, but they will "stink it up"!
If one of your discs had mould on it, it is probably on the head causing problems and spreading to the other discs!
There are plenty of threads on here about both and loads on mouldy floppies on the general web.

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 9:25 am
by thefool1983
tricky wrote:
Sun Jan 13, 2019 9:18 am
The caps shouldn't kill it, but they will "stink it up"!
If one of your discs had mould on it, it is probably on the head causing problems and spreading to the other discs!
There are plenty of threads on here about both and loads on mouldy floppies on the general web.
Yeah have been reading about the dreaded mould. The 3 discs I have used so far look ok. But will try and clean the head some how. The drive sort of sounds "sluggish" compared to the 2nd drive. Was thinking of possibly swapping the two around and making the secondary primary if possible. This probably involves changing dip switches or something.

Have read that there are different versions of PSUs so will pull it out and have a look. It's worth noting I checked the output voltage of the PSU using a digital multimeter and it was bang on 4.97V.

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 10:31 am
by tricky
I would consider swapping one of the drives for a gotek with the opensource FlashFloppy firmware (they usually come in 3.5" cases).
You would still have a real floppy, but it would be much easier to backup your old discs and add new ones.

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 12:09 pm
by thefool1983
tricky wrote:
Sun Jan 13, 2019 10:31 am
I would consider swapping one of the drives for a gotek with the opensource FlashFloppy firmware (they usually come in 3.5" cases).
You would still have a real floppy, but it would be much easier to backup your old discs and add new ones.
Ok. Thanks I will look into that!

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 12:27 pm
by JudgeBeeb
flaxcottage wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 8:30 pm
One thing, is the monkey wrench essential for computer maintenance? :lol:
Of course it is:
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Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 12:29 pm
by JudgeBeeb
Greetings.

I don't know what part of the world you hail from, but if you are local and free next weekend, you could always come along to the next ABUG event. Details here.

Re: Hello. New forum user. BBC master

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 7:34 pm
by thefool1983
JudgeBeeb wrote:
Sun Jan 13, 2019 12:29 pm
Greetings.

I don't know what part of the world you hail from, but if you are local and free next weekend, you could always come along to the next ABUG event. Details here.
Thanks. I am in Belfast so a bit far from the event.
Thanks for the invite though