XF551 drive question

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XF551 drive question

Postby Geister » Thu Dec 21, 2017 4:04 pm

Hi, I recently decided to get back into Atari computers and bought some units at a local surplus store I bought an 800XL with a 1050 drive (unmodded), and a 130XE with an XF551.

Everything is as Atari sold them with the exception of the XF551. It has a 3-way toggle switch installed in the front panel of the drive. The drive seems to only work normally with the switch in the central position. Does anyone know of a common mod for this drive that uses a 3 way switch?

I also bought some used floppy disks from the same place that appear to have Atari software on them, but the 1050 cannot read them. I don't have access to the XF551 at the moment, but I suspect that the disks were formatted double sided/ double density. Maybe they just died over time. I never had an XF551 before so I'm not very familiar with them.

I'm working on building an SIO2PC (USB) cable using a DTFI board. Any tips on getting it to work?

Also, any old Abe's Aces members on here?
Geister
 
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Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2017 4:04 pm

Re: XF551 drive question

Postby Geister » Tue Dec 26, 2017 9:32 pm

No guesses on the toggle switch? Well, I guess I'll be taking it apart to see what it's soldered to.

Here's another issue I could use some guidance on.

I bought several used game cartridges from a place called 2nd and Charles. All worked except for Asteroids. I know I can download most of these carts as ROM images, but I'd like to have the thing working, if possible.

The metal part of the cart had a ding in it, but the internals appear to have been undamaged and show no signs of corrosion. Is there anything that I should be looking for in the way of damage? Do the cart ROMs ever just die of old age?

I'm ringing out the traces from the sockets back to the edge connector, and so far, everything checks out. Both ROMS are socketed, I suppose that the chips could have been swapped by a curious previous owner, but how could I tell? Do the numbers on the chips tell where they should be? There are two similar numbers on the chips, C45036 and C45037. The one ending in 036 is in the left socket and the one ending in 037 is in the right. Is there a cross reference between Atari part numbers and cartridge games?

I'm still wondering if there are any old ABES ACES members out there (with the emphasis on old)?
Geister
 
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Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2017 4:04 pm

Re: XF551 drive question

Postby Geister » Thu Dec 28, 2017 1:59 pm

Well, the Asteroids cart seems to be fixing itself. :D

It's not 100% yet, but I'm thinking the problem is contacts in the cart slot. I've got to get some of that DeOxit spray.

I hope everybody had a great Christmas and will have a great New year!
Geister
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2017 4:04 pm

Re: XF551 drive question

Postby Geister » Sat Jan 06, 2018 10:57 pm

Anybody still alive on here?
Well, I had the XF551 apart to fix a cracked solder joint at the power plug. While I had apart, I traced the wired from the switch on the front. It basically takes two wires to ground.

The two wires on one side of the switch going to jumper wires on the top side of the single sided board. The one jumper is marked D0 & and the other I think is D1. The third wire goes under the board and is soldered directly to the ground plane. I suspect that the switch overrides the drive select switch although I can't think why it would be useful to do that.

The drive seems to work fine except I cannot get it to format a floppy. The floppies I'm trying to format don't seem to be readable, so they may just be crap disks. I'm not going to try to format the disks that I can read until I can back up the files on them to another location.

I've hooked the SIO2PC cable I'm building to the PC and installed the drivers and respeQT recognizes it on COM4. With a loop-back between RXD and TXD I can type into a terminal program and watch the activity lights blink on the FTDI board, and the letters I typed appear in the terminal. So far, so good. I have to get the pins for the SIO connector I 3D printed so I can wire up the Atari side to go any further.

That Asteroids cartridge is still flaky, but working most of the time. I still need to get DeoxIT to see if it helps.

Later!
Geister
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2017 4:04 pm


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