What has been happening?

With the majority of the load of Commodore stuff sold now, my cupboards have returned to storing clothes, instead of harbouring a collection of cassette tapes.  Only a small pile remain.

However, I have been picking up C64 and Disk Drives and repairing them to sell on.  So have a few to repair, mostly the PLA’s are away.

Managed to acquire a couple of nice things for myself as well.  A neat MPS1000 Serial and parallel printer.  Takes A4 paper as well as Continuous paper.  I picked up a couple of boxed,mint 1520 Plotters.  I got new pens for them as well.  Don’t know what i will use it for yet,  but I am sure something will spring to mind.  Finally got the last 6 issues of commodore Disk User to complete the set.  I now have every issue.  I got a fully socketed Breadbin, which is ideal for testing faulty chips and I got a Solder Station from Maplins to accompany it.  Need a bigger shack now.

I still have a lot to do, repair the C64’s and sell them, Scan and preserve the Fanzines,  build the 80 column monitor cable (be easier with my new solder station) and try and get past the planning stage of Radio Log Program.  Got to try and get it all done before new baby arrives in May!!

Speak soon

BLOG QUIET – COMMODORE BUSY

I haven’t blogged for a while, but have been very busy on the Commodore front.

My Pakratt  64 arrived, still haven’t tested it yet. Re-arranged the Commodore Shack to accommodate the Pakratt and a new VHF Scanner,bought from a member of the local Ham Radio Club.  A couple of new desks have been put in as well as new chairs.  I will get picks up soon.

I recently bought a LOAD of Commodore Gear from down south.  Amiga 500, 500+,600, 600HD,1200, Vic 20’s, C64C’s,C64 Original, Plus 4, hundreds of games for the C64 and Amiga, Joysticks, Tape Decks, Books, Replacement Chips, Cartridges, disk drives.  Plus some other bits and bobs.

I have been listing these on Ebay, an that has been taking a lot of my time.  There was a load of disks and magazines.  Zine 64, Commodore Scene and GeosNews to name some of the more complete volumes, all from the late 90’s.  I will be scanning these when I get time and sharing them with you all here.  The disks were also there for the magazines as well as tons of other Geos and PD stuff on disk.  I will be preserving those as well and hosting them here.

My Commodore Shack is a bit of  storing ground just now but things are selling.

I have a bit more time now, so until later.

Back from Holiday and projects to do.

Been away for a few days and still have the 80 column cable to make up and the shack audio to finish.  It is not turning out the way I want it to, so I might need to redo the video entirely.

I have tried some of my databases for my shortwave logs, but none of them are going to do what I want, so I will write my own program.  I have planned the project and played with some graphics for the main menu, they will fit in the upper case graphics.  I will re-use the same font as Scanner Log Printer program to keep the two programs similar.  The numbers I will leave as std cbm for clarity on screen, and the std cbm graphics keys on the shift and cbm keys I will use for characters for the main menu like search, sort, save,edit, enter data etc.  The main program flow is written out, just need to enter the program now.  Thinking it will take a good few weeks to write and test.

 

I am waiting to receive a Pakratt 64 HFM64 Packet Radio, CW, AMTOR and RTTY receiver for the C64. Means I can receive and decode these modes using the 64 and save data to disk and printer. Looking forward to using this.  Will keep you updated.

 

Check back soon.

 

Kevin 

IN THE POST TODAY

Today I received 22 issues of YC.  A couple were the old Your Commodore.  I need only 5 issues to complete the set.  Think I am the same for Commodore Format.

 

It was a shame to see the magazine go from programming friendly to down and out pure sh@te.  It was made for 10 year olds.  Even the cover tapes were crap.  At least CDU kept the programming side going (3 or 4 issues needed for that set).

 

I have not started on the cable yet, too much going on the past couple of days.I need to add audio to the shack video as well. Plenty to keep me going.

 

See you all soon.

80 Column Cable

I went to Maplins this morning to buy bits for the cable.  I bought some heat shrink for the cable, some wire and a couple of Metalised D-Type Hoods for the 9 pin din connectors.  I will solder a cable up tonight to try on the 128.

 

I have managed to source the parts cheaper and in bulk, so if it works I will begin making the cables up.  

 

I have started the Shack Tour video, so I am going to crack on with that just now while I have got some free time.

 

Keep you updated.

New Projects – 1084s C128 Cable and Shack Tour Video

I received 10 male 9 pin Din Connectors today.  I will pop to Maplins and have a look at some of the options on wire and sealing the cable in.

I intend to make 5 C128 to 1084s Monitor cables for 80 column mode.  I cant seem to find any on ebay etc.

It is a straight forward pin 1 to pin 1 connection, so once they are done I will sell 4 of them. If they sell well, I will see about making some more.

 

I will start on a new video which will be a tour of my Commodore Shack.  Thankfully I have peace and quiet tommorrow to do it while the missus and wee one are out at the zoo.

Come back soon for another update.

 

Tata all, it’s lunch time for me now.

 

 

Shortwave Log Printer – Completed!!

I have managed to finish the Shortwave Log Printer.  I have called it Scanner Log Printer as I can use it with my VHF stuff.

I would have finished it last night, but 1541U2 decided to not save anything to D64, despite saying it was saved and verified.  Don’t know what the issue was.  

I tried to put in a sprite of an antenna, but it corrupted the char set, so I deleted it and made an antenna graphic from 9 characters instead.  I didn’t add a logo or split screen the way the programming was going, but it gives me time to play about and experiment at my leisure with them.

I dont know if it will print out via Vice, as I cant get it to print to file.  Let me know if you get it to work.

It works fine on a real C64 and MPS803 printer.  It is formatted for continuous paper.

I have set up a database on Mini Office 2 to record my logs, unfortunatly it only holds 150 odd records which is about 5 days of scanning.  Will look at the other databases I have.

 

Here is the link:Scannerlog.d64

 

Enjoy.

 

 

UPDATE AFTER ILLNESS

While the other half and myself have had tonsilitise and conjunctivitis and been bed bound for a week (The plus side was She couldn’t talk and I couldn’t see her!) I am now back and feeling much better.

Been spending the past few evenings scanning the Shortwaves, picked up a strange code on RTTY.

I have been logging the stations on the Shortwave Logs  that I am able to print out to the MPS803.

Tonight I have set up the program to read in a new char set,and I have designed one on CBM Prg Studio.  I will hand code them tommorow and get the main screen going.

I want to put in a split colour screen at the top and put a logo or heading in.

Then the prog is just about done and ready for release.

Moved the Shack about a bit to accomodate another monitor for the C128D.

I am waiting for some connectors to arrive to make a cable for the C128D to 1084S 80 colomn screen.  I can make 5 cables and sell the other 4 if I get it to work.  I have the schematics so it should be straight froward. (famous last words!!)

Night all, until next time.

SHORTWAVE LOG UPDATE

Managed to get the Shortwave Log to print out ok onto paper now.  Had to use strings to print out to the 80 chars per line, as the c64 only holds 40 chars per program line.

ie  160 a$=”* TIME * FREQUENCY * USB/LSB * SIG STR *”

     170 B$=” SIG INT * NOTES                                          *”
     180 PRINT#4,a$+b$
This prints both strings on one line so I can get one heading.
Pressing CTRL and N Before a word or sentence activates double print.CTRL and O turns it off.
CTRL and RVS ON before a word or sentence turns on reverse,and CTRL RVS OFF, turns it off.
I am now going to redesign the char set for the Start and Main page.  It’s going to be along day.

BACKING UP DISKS!!

I decided to sell a box of 62 disks with Crackto’s and demo’s on them from the Eastender’s Cracking Crew.  I have had to preserve the disks as they have some demos etc not on CSDB.  I have been using Warpcopy with the 64NIC+, which copies over wifi.  It takes 22 seconds to copy a disk image.

 

Warpcopy is a brilliant program and worth doing a video on as it took a wee bit to get used too.

 

I have copied 41 disk just now, they are all double sided, so 21 disks (42 more times) and I will be done.

Received a 1085s monitor yesterday to go with my C128D which in the next few months I hope to get up and running as a BBS.  I have had a couple of books to add to my collection.  The latest one Pan/PCW The Companion to the Commodore 64 looks a great read.  Has a full chapter on Raster Interupts.

 

Time to get back to these disks.  At least one thing, the 1541-II has had a great run.

 

Thats them all backed up.  Heres the link;

http://cloud.cbm8bit.com/jocktrucker/EEDISK00.zip