oh boy, another project :-)

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Glenn Roberts

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Nov 25, 2021, 7:13:46 PM11/25/21
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Alex Bodnar recently pointed out an eBay action for an H11+H27 combo, with starting bid at $600 (it had also shown up in my morning search). I quickly pooh-poohed that the price will surely go up.  Silly me.  I had it on my watch list and got a message in my hotel room at like 10:00 at night that time was almost up. And there were no bids!  So what the heck, I’ll bid $600 for something like that.  and won!

 

So now I’m the proud new owner.  Just what I needed, another winter project!

 

The H27 arrived yesterday.  Pretty bad shape (which explains why there was only one picture showing it, and only from the front).  Here’s what I’m seeing:

 

https://photos.app.goo.gl/eWHKyKR8ND8KH4uZA

 

lost of damage to the plastic pieces on the Memorex drives.  I’m a total noob to 8” drives – these things are built like a tank compared to mini floppy drives.  My main concern in restoration would be repairing/replacing the plastic drive doors, the rest looks pretty much intact and complete.

 

the H11 should arrive tomorrow but I’ll be away again so won’t be able to post anything about that ‘til next week sometime.  From the eBay pictures it looks to be in decent shape. Let’s hope the seller packs it well! I think this link will take you to the original listing: here

 

I know there are experts here who have lots of experience with these (Dave McGuire?).  could use some pointers on where to learn more and if the appropriate manuals and software are archived somewhere.

 

  • Glenn

 

Les Bird

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Nov 25, 2021, 8:16:11 PM11/25/21
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Ha! I was wondering who won that. Congrats!

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Steven Feinsmith

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Nov 25, 2021, 9:06:32 PM11/25/21
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It was not a surprise incident from an eBay seller in poor condition. You need to focus on restoring your device to work again. My strong advice is to avoid power on because it looks like the device was on a shelf in the basement or even in the attic and collect humidity conditions.
First of all, remove both drives carefully. Then, you need to check the power supply system and look at the electrolytic capacitors' date stamped. If it is over 30 years old, regardless of whether it has a good physical condition. I suggest you use an autotransformer to start low voltage for the first half-hour then increase by 10 volts every hour. You need a thermal image device to watch out if any components heat up. If so, shut down then, test the part(s). It will be an enormous challenge for the restoration procedure.
For example, I bought a Heathkit amateur radio power supply for my Heathkit transceiver. The filter capacitors were toasted and checked further, and found resistors were out of tolerance. I had rebuilt everything, and it works successfully with a pair of brand new filter capacitors and resistors. The output voltage showed minimum ripple current and correct voltage.
It will give you an idea. Let me warn you about a pair of 8" drives. It is not for anyone who knows nothing to repair it. If you damage the head, then it is ready for burial. 

By the way, if the eBay seller posted, it was not the same as what you received for the device. You can challenge the seller about the condition that does not match the eBay included description. You can make a deal for a 50% refund. If the seller refuses or is nasty to you through email ONLY. NO PHONE CONVERSATION. You can file with eBay about the situation.

Good luck,
Steven

Dave McGuire

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Nov 26, 2021, 10:46:20 AM11/26/21
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On 11/25/21 7:13 PM, Glenn Roberts wrote:
> Alex Bodnar recently pointed out an eBay action for an H11+H27 combo,
> with starting bid at $600 (it had also shown up in my morning search). I
> quickly pooh-poohed that the price will surely go up.  Silly me.  I had
> it on my watch list and got a message in my hotel room at like 10:00 at
> night that time was almost up. And there were no bids!  So what the
> heck, I’ll bid $600 for something like that.  and won!

I looked long and hard at that, as H27s are so damn hard to find.
I'm glad it's "in the family", so to speak.

I assume H-11 discussion is welcome here, even though it's not an
8-bit system.

> I know there are experts here who have lots of experience with these
> (Dave McGuire?).  could use some pointers on where to learn more and if
> the appropriate manuals and software are archived somewhere.

I don't know much about the H-11 ecosystem, but I live and breathe
PDP-11s, and I recently had the opportunity to learn a lot about the
H-11 power supply.

Start with the power supply; I'd recommend bringing it up on a
Variac. If it comes up cleanly, ensure that the voltages and ripple are
within spec, and check the LTC signal (BEVENT) with an oscilloscope.

If you have issues with the power supply, be aware that Heath
exercised questionable judgment in some aspects of that design, and some
of the components are difficult to find. Last year I tracked most of
them down and bought a few, in preparation to work on one of Alex's
H-11s (which he surprisingly gifted to me). So, don't go nuts trying to
find the weird parts until you talk to me, as I may be able to supply
them if needed.

After that, it's a fairly standard low-end Qbus PDP-11 in most
respects. Do you have any PDP-11 experience, and do you have any Qbus
boards other than what came with this new H-11?

-Dave

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New Kensington, PA

Glenn Roberts

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Nov 26, 2021, 6:53:02 PM11/26/21
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Thanks dave. My only experience with PDP-11s was in front of a DECWriter __. In grad school I had access to a few for some FORTRAN work I was doing and then early in my career I worked on software in a lab that had a whole back room full of VAXen and PDP's. never had the chance to really work "under the hood", and our software work was mostly on the VAX/VMS - the PDPs were for real time aviation weather parsing/storage for a voice-response system.

I have also always been intrigued by the Terak, which I worked on for a bit many years ago

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terak_8510/a

one of those came up on eBay not too long ago. Another bit of non-bidder's remorse on that one ... it was an LSI-11-based machine with cool bit graphics capability. It was used extensively in the development of the UCSD P System.

As for the H27. Without the plastic components it may be a lost cause. Assuming I can get the H-11 working I would want to use a software emulation for the drive, perhaps DREM? https://www.drem.info/home

It may be quite a while (if ever) before I have anything that can be demo'ed (I suppose I should really start looking for that DECwriter !) but that's the nature of this hobby. Took me a few years to pull together the pieces I needed to have a working H9.

Btw: I note this same seller ('dogas') has other Heath computer equipment for sale so may be worth watching to see what else pops up. His starting prices are reasonable. He did a so-so job of packaging the H27 so I wonder how he'd pack that H9, for example.
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Steven Hirsch

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Nov 26, 2021, 10:00:37 PM11/26/21
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On 11/25/21 7:13 PM, Glenn Roberts wrote:
> Alex Bodnar recently pointed out an eBay action for an H11+H27 combo, with
> starting bid at $600 (it had also shown up in my morning search). I quickly
> pooh-poohed that the price will surely go up. Silly me. I had it on my
> watch list and got a message in my hotel room at like 10:00 at night that
> time was almost up. And there were no bids! So what the heck, I'll bid $600
> for something like that. and won!
>
>
>
> So now I'm the proud new owner. Just what I needed, another winter project!

I have a bunch of healing scars from my introduction to the H11. Please feel
free to ping me if you have any questions?

Adrian Stoness

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Nov 26, 2021, 10:29:56 PM11/26/21
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lots of blood eh

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Mike Enkelis

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Nov 26, 2021, 10:59:52 PM11/26/21
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I saw that listing, the H11 is the first revision as it’s lacking the LTC control switch.
I also had a first revision H11, and for it to operate correctly you need to disable LTC on the power supply. This is easy as usually this is a pair of socket pins that accepts a small wire, and is on the back (facing up) side of the power supply.
Revision two had a third switch on the front panel for LTC control.


From: se...@googlegroups.com <se...@googlegroups.com> on behalf of Adrian Stoness <tdk.k...@gmail.com>
Sent: Friday, November 26, 2021 7:29:43 PM
To: se...@googlegroups.com <se...@googlegroups.com>
Subject: Re: [sebhc] oh boy, another project :-)
 

Adrian Stoness

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Nov 26, 2021, 11:47:33 PM11/26/21
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what you mean by lacking ltc control switch?

Mike Enkelis

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Nov 27, 2021, 12:51:04 AM11/27/21
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First revision had two toggle switch on front panel.
Power and Run/Halt.
Later revision had third switch Line Time Clock 
which enabled  power line frequency interrupt signal on the backplane.
Issue is that without a interrupt handler installed and LTC enabled caused entry to ODT each tick.
So you needed to disable LTC in order to boot up.


Sent: Friday, November 26, 2021 8:47:19 PM

Glenn Roberts

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Nov 27, 2021, 3:33:48 PM11/27/21
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Sounds a bit scary already based on some of the comments posted here. Not sure I'll ever come to love this like the H8 but we'll see how things go...

Thanks all..

Dave McGuire

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Nov 27, 2021, 3:36:53 PM11/27/21
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On 11/27/21 10:41 AM, Glenn Roberts wrote:
> Sounds a bit scary already based on some of the comments posted here. Not sure I'll ever come to love this like the H8 but we'll see how things go...

Oh, it's not that bad. Just don't think of it as a microcomputer,
because it's not, and PDP-11s were never targeted at hobbyists. It's a
very different world. Worse in some ways, but better in many others.

It's also helpful to not really think of it as a "Heathkit machine",
philosophically, but a small and inexpensive (at the time) way to get a
PDP-11 in a home environment.

Glenn Roberts

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Nov 27, 2021, 3:39:38 PM11/27/21
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Watched a few videos and am now re-enthused __ I'll be anxious to see the unit and its condition "in the flesh". It has arrived at my home but I'm away for a few days. Will report back!

- glenn
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Adrian Stoness

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Nov 27, 2021, 3:44:17 PM11/27/21
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Dave McGuire

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Nov 27, 2021, 4:47:38 PM11/27/21
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These are not H-11 related. (sorry)

-Dave

On 11/27/21 3:44 PM, Adrian Stoness wrote:
> this might come in handy
> https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/730x1009q90/r/851/page1s.jpg
> <https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/730x1009q90/r/851/page1s.jpg>
> https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/579x800q90/r/221/page11ye.jpg
> <https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/579x800q90/r/221/page11ye.jpg>
>
> On Sat, Nov 27, 2021 at 2:39 PM Glenn Roberts <glenn.f...@gmail.com
> <mailto:glenn.f...@gmail.com>> wrote:
>
> Watched a few videos and am now re-enthused __  I'll be anxious to
> see the unit and its condition "in the flesh".  It has arrived at my
> home but I'm away for a few days.  Will report back!
>
> - glenn
>
>
>
> On 11/27/21, 3:36 PM, "Dave McGuire" <se...@googlegroups.com
> <mailto:se...@googlegroups.com> on behalf of mcg...@neurotica.com
> <mailto:sebhc%2Bunsu...@googlegroups.com>.
> <https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/sebhc/648aed8b-10c2-41f2-c7fb-b702e86e5b8b%40neurotica.com>.
>
>
>
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Adrian Stoness

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Nov 27, 2021, 4:52:48 PM11/27/21
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buried in my h11 stuff shrugs

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Dave McGuire

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Nov 27, 2021, 4:53:23 PM11/27/21
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Hey, it happens.

-Dave

On 11/27/21 4:52 PM, Adrian Stoness wrote:
> buried in my h11 stuff shrugs
>
> On Sat, Nov 27, 2021 at 3:47 PM Dave McGuire <mcg...@neurotica.com
> <mailto:mcg...@neurotica.com>> wrote:
>
>
>    These are not H-11 related. (sorry)
>
>            -Dave
>
> On 11/27/21 3:44 PM, Adrian Stoness wrote:
> > this might come in handy
> > https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/730x1009q90/r/851/page1s.jpg
> <https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/730x1009q90/r/851/page1s.jpg>
> > <https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/730x1009q90/r/851/page1s.jpg
> <https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/730x1009q90/r/851/page1s.jpg>>
> > https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/579x800q90/r/221/page11ye.jpg
> <https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/579x800q90/r/221/page11ye.jpg>
> > <https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/579x800q90/r/221/page11ye.jpg
> <https://imagizer.imageshack.com/v2/579x800q90/r/221/page11ye.jpg>>
> >
> > On Sat, Nov 27, 2021 at 2:39 PM Glenn Roberts
> <glenn.f...@gmail.com <mailto:glenn.f...@gmail.com>
> > <mailto:glenn.f...@gmail.com
> <mailto:glenn.f...@gmail.com>>> wrote:
> >
> >     Watched a few videos and am now re-enthused __  I'll be
> anxious to
> >     see the unit and its condition "in the flesh".  It has
> arrived at my
> >     home but I'm away for a few days.  Will report back!
> >
> >     - glenn
> >
> >
> >
> >     On 11/27/21, 3:36 PM, "Dave McGuire" <se...@googlegroups.com
> <mailto:se...@googlegroups.com>
> >     <mailto:se...@googlegroups.com
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> <mailto:sebhc%252Buns...@googlegroups.com>>.
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> >
> https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/sebhc/648aed8b-10c2-41f2-c7fb-b702e86e5b8b%40neurotica.com
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> >
>  <https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/sebhc/648aed8b-10c2-41f2-c7fb-b702e86e5b8b%40neurotica.com <https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/sebhc/648aed8b-10c2-41f2-c7fb-b702e86e5b8b%40neurotica.com>>.
> >
> >
> >
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Steven Hirsch

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Nov 27, 2021, 4:58:18 PM11/27/21
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On 11/27/21 3:39 PM, Glenn Roberts wrote:
> Watched a few videos and am now re-enthused __ I'll be anxious to see the
> unit and its condition "in the flesh". It has arrived at my home but I'm
> away for a few days. Will report back!
>

I predict you will enjoy working with it. The initial learning curve can be a
bit steep since, as Dave mentions, it's NOT a micro-computer at its core.
Terminology is different and sometimes DEC specific.

Since the Heathkit IP czar has forced all the archive sites to pull down
scans, you may find it difficult to locate manuals (and there are a number of
them for both hardware, system configuration and software). Give a yell
privately if you need to fill in any missing tomes.

Again, feel free to ping me with questions. Very fresh in my head since I
just went down the same path.

Steve

Dave McGuire

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Nov 27, 2021, 5:27:58 PM11/27/21
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On 11/27/21 4:58 PM, Steven Hirsch wrote:
> Since the Heathkit IP czar has forced all the archive sites to pull down
> scans, you may find it difficult to locate manuals (and there are a
> number of them for both hardware, system configuration and software).
>
Yeah, so what's up with that, does anyone know? Is this some scumbag
suit trying to wring the last few dollars out of it, or is something
else afoot?

Steven Hirsch

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Nov 27, 2021, 6:14:33 PM11/27/21
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On 11/27/21 5:27 PM, Dave McGuire wrote:
> On 11/27/21 4:58 PM, Steven Hirsch wrote:
>> Since the Heathkit IP czar has forced all the archive sites to pull down
>> scans, you may find it difficult to locate manuals (and there are a number
>> of them for both hardware, system configuration and software).
>   Yeah, so what's up with that, does anyone know?  Is this some scumbag suit
> trying to wring the last few dollars out of it, or is something else afoot?

It's the guy who owns IP rights to Heath. He sent a cease-and-desist letter
to Bitsavers and they've pulled down everything. A number of the H11 manuals
were not to be found anywhere when I went looking.

So "scumbag suit" is the applicable term.


s shumaker

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Nov 27, 2021, 6:39:19 PM11/27/21
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Has that resurfaced again?  Is this recent activity or rehashing what
happened several years ago?  The guy involved is Don Peterson who
owns/runs  "Data Professionals" in Dublin CA.  He has a really poorly
worded "bill of sale" for some of the early Heath manual IP that he
apparently bought off EBAY back years ago.   It's ALWAYS been questioned.

I recently bought some docs and personality modules for the 4801
programmer on EBAY and the seller turned out to be him under a different
name.  The product was implied as Heath original although it doesn't
specifically say that.  What I received was a modern "resurrected"
version of the IDA-4801-1 Personality Module Kit.

The interesting part was the company info at the bottom of the
instruction sheet which states that "Data Professionals is a Heath
Company Business" and displayed the copyrighted Heath Company logo.

Mark Garlanger

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Nov 27, 2021, 10:32:55 PM11/27/21
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Back in 2011, I contacted Heath, and got a response from the CEO at the time. I'm not sure what has happened with everything since then, but she confirmed that the agreement with Data Professionals did not include the copyright.

Mr. Garlanger,

 

We retain the copyright to all Heath/Heathkit product material.

 

I would need more specifics to your request : “would like to make the computer related content freely available for historical purposes (i.e. researching old systems, restoring old computers, making emulators, etc)”.

 

I would need specific information on what products/information you are asking to make available, as “computer related content” could apply to many, many of Heathkit’s products, both past and present.

 

Sincerely,

Lori Marciniak

Heathkit Company, Inc.


I never got any responses after that, so wasn't able to actually get permission to post any of the Heath stuff. But I also wasn't able to get confirmation that it was her company that still had rights to the old heathkit docs. When Heath separated from ZDS, all the computer assets were sold to Groupe Bull. Heath was left mainly with just the educational training items. It's not clear whether the legacy computer products or just the current computer items were covered with the sale to Groupe Bull. After that Groupe Bull sold it off to Packard Bell, and then got sold to NEC, I think. It's very likely the rights went with the sale of the computers, but who knows.

Mark



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geneb

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Nov 28, 2021, 12:52:32 PM11/28/21
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If you've got them, send them to me. I'd be happy to host them. There is
going to be a point where a Sci-Hub for computer documentation has to
happen.

g.


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Glenn Roberts

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Dec 1, 2021, 10:04:26 PM12/1/21
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So I got to examine the H-11 and it is in much better shape than the H27 was. Looks to be a pretty stock system. Quad slot CPU board, dual serial cards, 16K words of RAM and the floppy I/O board. also a bus terminator card (is that necessary? I watched a video that suggested this wasn't needed). Pix here
https://photos.app.goo.gl/eWHKyKR8ND8KH4uZA

Silly me I didn't realize the H11 has exactly the same side panels as the H8. Not surprisingly a few of the brass fittings broke loose from the plastic. This is a common problem. Hard to know if it was in shipping or just years of lugging the system around. Really a poor design choice on Heath's part
https://photos.app.goo.gl/7h5mpzajnZVQNvqJ9
https://photos.app.goo.gl/ui75QaVj5M8aR9u18

I've had some luck in fixing these in the past.

The whole box smells musty. The cards look to me like they've never been removed from the chassis. I'm hopeful that I can get this working.

For now I'm doing some teardown and cleaning, and will fix the broken chassis parts, then on to the power supply before trying anything more.

I have not been able to find any of the hardware manuals for either the H11 or the H27, so any pointers would be appreciated!

- glenn



-----Original Message-----
From: Glenn Roberts <glenn.f...@gmail.com>
Sent: Saturday, November 27, 2021 3:40 PM
To: se...@googlegroups.com
Subject: Re: [sebhc] oh boy, another project :-)

Douglas Miller

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Dec 1, 2021, 10:11:54 PM12/1/21
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I don't know the H-11 at all, but my only experience with a PDP-11 was
spending several days debugging a DMA board (DR11-B) on one. There was a
glitch causing the bus to lock up during a transfer, which finally was
tracked down to one pin on the bus. The documentation claimed you
could/should leave the pin unconnected, but it would glitch unless you
pulled-up that pin. So, I'd be wary of changing (removing) bus
termination, I suspect it can be quite sensitive. Of course, the H-11
bus may be nothing like the PDP-11, electrically.

s shumaker

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Dec 1, 2021, 11:13:36 PM12/1/21
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I think I have most of the hardware manuals.  I'll have to look for
them.  What I have is from online deep searches..  (Had a complete set
of paper docs before the fire that were on the stack for scanning.)

I acquired an H11 system earlier this year as a replacement for my lost
system.  It too has a busted brass fitting.  I know those have been
discussed here but haven't had a chance to go searching.  What is the
usual process for repairing them?

Steve

Dave McGuire

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Dec 1, 2021, 11:29:08 PM12/1/21
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The H-11's bus is exactly Qbus, one of the standard PDP-11 buses.
The processor in the H-11 is a preassembled, off-the-shelf Qbus LSI-11
or LSI-11/2 processor board, which makes the H-11 a PDP-11/03.

-Dave

Dave McGuire

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Dec 2, 2021, 12:34:45 AM12/2/21
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On 12/1/21 11:13 PM, s shumaker wrote:
> I acquired an H11 system earlier this year as a replacement for my lost
> system.  It too has a busted brass fitting.  I know those have been
> discussed here but haven't had a chance to go searching.  What is the
> usual process for repairing them?

On an H-8 earlier this year, I got good results by setting the brass
inserts into their (damaged) pockets and building up several layers of
epoxy around them. I used four or five applications of epoxy, leaving
about a day of curing time in between each layer. This creates a large
volume of material around the inserts to support them and effectively
transfer any stresses from the screw through the insert and into the
side panel, rather than just breaking the insert loose. The key here is
to deposit multiple layers, allowing each to cure.

The epoxy I used on this was JB Weld Plastic Binder. I recommend it
in general; it's very good.

Note that, in general where epoxies are concerned, the shorter the
curing time, the more brittle the result. So, this is one of those few
times in which patience actually does pay off. ;)

The results are excellent; the H-8 enclosure is rock solid, it has
been carried around a bit flipped over on its side a few times during
troubleshooting, etc etc.

Dave McGuire

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Dec 2, 2021, 12:58:56 AM12/2/21
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I should add, in case it wasn't obvious, that it's necessary to
completely disassemble the chassis to do this. Have the two end pieces
sitting flat on the table, and don't have the screws in the brass
inserts. Don't get any epoxy into the threads in the inserts.

Dave McGuire

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Dec 2, 2021, 1:12:40 AM12/2/21
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On 12/1/21 10:04 PM, Glenn Roberts wrote:
> So I got to examine the H-11 and it is in much better shape than the H27 was. Looks to be a pretty stock system. Quad slot CPU board, dual serial cards, 16K words of RAM and the floppy I/O board. also a bus terminator card (is that necessary? I watched a video that suggested this wasn't needed). Pix here
> https://photos.app.goo.gl/eWHKyKR8ND8KH4uZA

A terminator isn't necessary in a Qbus that's this short.

You have the first-generation CPU, the LSI-11, as distinguished from
the LSI-11/2. Same chipset, same basic capabilities, slightly different
board-level feature set. Still a PDP-11/03. This was the first Q-bus
PDP-11 implementation.

The CPU board you have can optionally have 4Kwords of RAM on it; look
for rows of DRAM chips at the top right of the LSI-11 (M7264) board. In
your photo I think those chips might be present. That onboard RAM can
be disabled with jumpers.

Before removing those boards, make a note of what was where. There's
no reason to expect that it was an operational configuration, but it
could be good information to have.

> For now I'm doing some teardown and cleaning, and will fix the broken chassis parts, then on to the power supply before trying anything more.

Good plan. The post-assembly testing steps for the power supply in
the Heathkit manual are very good; start with those and see how far you
get. There's a 20A cylindrical glass fuse in the power supply, on the
DC side, F101. Removing that fuse isolates most (not all!) of the
regulator circuitry from the power inpu; it is helpful to pull that
first, and check the transformer, rectifiers, and main filter capacitor.

BTW, my control panel lamps were blown, so I purchased a bag of the
proper lamps to replace them. I could've replaced them with LEDs, but I
plan to exhibit my H-11 at LSSM so I wanted it to be all-original. Let
me know if you need any of those bulbs, I'd be happy to send you some.

As with anything this old, remember, any troubleshooting information
in the documentation wasn't written for hardware that's nearly half a
century old. There are new failure modes now that weren't common back
then. This is true for everything, of course, not just H-11s.

Glenn Roberts

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Dec 2, 2021, 7:45:31 AM12/2/21
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Yes theCPU board has 16 4K-bit (4096) DRAM chips. Tx for pointing that out.

Agree, best to follow Heathkit checkout procedures and take things one step at a time. Will report progress ...

-----Original Message-----
From: se...@googlegroups.com <se...@googlegroups.com> On Behalf Of Dave McGuire
Sent: Thursday, December 02, 2021 1:13 AM
To: se...@googlegroups.com
Subject: Re: [sebhc] oh boy, another project :-)

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Glenn Roberts

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Dec 2, 2021, 7:59:46 AM12/2/21
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Dave: do you know if you use the black or gold version? Not sure what the difference is?...

https://www.homedepot.com/p/J-B-Weld-0-85-oz-Plastic-Bonder-50133H/303710788
https://www.homedepot.com/p/J-B-Weld-0-85-oz-PlasticBonder-Black-Adhesive-50139/308472914



-----Original Message-----
From: se...@googlegroups.com <se...@googlegroups.com> On Behalf Of Dave McGuire
Sent: Thursday, December 02, 2021 12:35 AM
To: se...@googlegroups.com
Subject: Re: [sebhc] oh boy, another project :-)

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Dave McGuire

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Dec 2, 2021, 10:57:30 AM12/2/21
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I'm using the first one, the tan one. I think the only difference is
the color, but I don't know for sure.

-Dave

William Sudbrink

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Dec 2, 2021, 11:14:31 AM12/2/21
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This is good to know. I have an Exidy Sorcerer that will be coming to the bench soon and a number of its threaded brass inserts have pulled loose.

Bill

-----Original Message-----
From: se...@googlegroups.com [mailto:se...@googlegroups.com] On Behalf Of Dave McGuire
Sent: Thursday, December 02, 2021 12:59 AM
To: se...@googlegroups.com
Subject: Re: [sebhc] oh boy, another project :-)

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Glenn Roberts

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Dec 13, 2021, 6:54:54 AM12/13/21
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An update on that eBay H11.

 

The side panels were damaged either in shipping or more likely in moving the machine around over the years. Some of the 6-32 brass fittings had pulled out of the side panels and both ones in the front had broken out entirely:

 

https://photos.app.goo.gl/fCZ2twNH641UPuE18

https://photos.app.goo.gl/uiSUVvHv5eVZLAgG7

 

I was able to find the broken piece (lodged under the metal shield that protects the high voltage connections) and used epoxy to re-secure the fittings:

 

https://photos.app.goo.gl/ZfnE43uyCTM1kkKH8

 

obviously, the trick here is to not get epoxy into the threads!  I think I succeeded.  I was able to re-seat the other loose fittings by applying heat with a soldering iron and slowly pushing then back down. the heat helps melt some of the plastic, securing the fitting.

 

Since I have the panels out I’ll probably give them a shot of satin black paint since they show the typical wear and tear of 40+ years…

 

As for the H11 itself: it’s still dead.  thanks to all the help this group has provided (especially Dave McGuire).  I’m hopeful that I can get this machine back to life in some form. Goal one is to just get a response from the console ODT (On-line Debugging Tool).

 

I’m less certain about the fate of the H27, which has multiple broken plastic pieces. 

 

It seems the most likely path to getting a bootable H11 would be with something like the qbone (see also  https://decromancer.ooo/qbone/)

 

We’ll see how far down the rabbit hole I end up going…

 

  • Glenn

 

 

From: Glenn Roberts <glenn.f...@gmail.com>
Sent: Thursday, November 25, 2021 7:14 PM
To: se...@googlegroups.com
Subject: oh boy, another project :-)

 

Alex Bodnar recently pointed out an eBay action for an H11+H27 combo, with starting bid at $600 (it had also shown up in my morning search). I quickly pooh-poohed that the price will surely go up.  Silly me.  I had it on my watch list and got a message in my hotel room at like 10:00 at night that time was almost up. And there were no bids!  So what the heck, I’ll bid $600 for something like that.  and won!

 

So now I’m the proud new owner.  Just what I needed, another winter project!

 

The H27 arrived yesterday.  Pretty bad shape (which explains why there was only one picture showing it, and only from the front).  Here’s what I’m seeing:

 

https://photos.app.goo.gl/eWHKyKR8ND8KH4uZA

 

lost of damage to the plastic pieces on the Memorex drives.  I’m a total noob to 8” drives – these things are built like a tank compared to mini floppy drives.  My main concern in restoration would be repairing/replacing the plastic drive doors, the rest looks pretty much intact and complete.

 

the H11 should arrive tomorrow but I’ll be away again so won’t be able to post anything about that ‘til next week sometime.  From the eBay pictures it looks to be in decent shape. Let’s hope the seller packs it well! I think this link will take you to the original listing: here

 

I know there are experts here who have lots of experience with these (Dave McGuire?).  could use some pointers on where to learn more and if the appropriate manuals and software are archived somewhere.

 

  • Glenn

 

Steven Hirsch

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Dec 13, 2021, 9:45:08 AM12/13/21
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On 12/13/21 6:54 AM, Glenn Roberts wrote:
> An update on that eBay H11.

> It seems the most likely path to getting a bootable H11 would be with
> something like the qbone
> <http://retrocmp.com/projects/qbone/313-qbone-introduction> (see also
> https://decromancer.ooo/qbone/)

The QBone is a great gadget, but unfortunately it does not do processor
emulation. You'll still need a functional CPU board.

Dave McGuire

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Dec 13, 2021, 11:07:07 AM12/13/21
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I'm working on Glenn's processor problem; we hope to have it sorted
this week.

Steven Hirsch

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Dec 13, 2021, 12:01:43 PM12/13/21
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+1

Adrian Stoness

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Dec 13, 2021, 12:38:16 PM12/13/21
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theres a 20amp fuse on the psu check see it it blew? its a glass cartridge type

try 11500 baud parity on? if i remember correctly

also the h11  was heavy on parrell ports vs dec's use of serial ports 



Glenn Roberts

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Dec 13, 2021, 5:36:03 PM12/13/21
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Well I now have the physical box in pretty good shape.
https://photos.app.goo.gl/tFU2yjuSRwzc1rxJ6

the lid has a few dings but what do you want for 43 years old?! 😊

the chassis has some foam padding that I'm guessing wasn't original (?). sound deadening? (the boxer fan is rather noisy).

The power supply seems to be putting out solid +5 and +12V. I followed the serial card assembly instructions for H9 EIA terminal which means the board is set for 600 BAUD, 8 bits, no parity, 1 stop bit. That's how I've got my TeraTerm configured.

Working with Dave to get it to be more than a pretty boat anchor 😊

You can follow my progress in this Google album
https://photos.app.goo.gl/eWHKyKR8ND8KH4uZA




-----Original Message-----
From: se...@googlegroups.com <se...@googlegroups.com> On Behalf Of Dave McGuire
Sent: Monday, December 13, 2021 11:07 AM
To: se...@googlegroups.com
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Norby

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Dec 13, 2021, 7:04:58 PM12/13/21
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You are doing a great job in restoring such system. WOW! Keep the pictures coming.

Sent from my iPhone

> On Dec 13, 2021, at 2:36 PM, Glenn Roberts <glenn.f...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Well I now have the physical box in pretty good shape.

pbi...@gmail.com

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Dec 14, 2021, 3:15:34 AM12/14/21
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I also have an H-11 that "came along for the ride" stuck inside a much larger piece of equipment. No peripherals, but did include an H-11-5 serial module and an H-27 FFD controller. Actually, it came with a separated pile of modules so it's not clear what was the last operational configuration but the base module was a dual-height M7270 KD11-HA; also included was a quad-height M8012-YA with the standard 23-045/046 PROM-pair, some M8044 32Kw RAM modules, and a M8027 LPV11 printer control.

Other than disassembling, general cleaning, and reassembling I haven't yet started work on it. Overall it's in pretty respectable shape. Unfortunately it's missing the lid ... which I had thought was louvered, identical to the H-8. I see from Glenn's' photos that it's actually solid one-piece construction, so that'll make it easier to construct a replacement. However ...

If anyone has an extra H-11 or H-8 top that I could acquire, well, please contact me!

Note that the H-11 is several inches wider than the H-8, so while the H-8 top exactly fits (now that I have one to use for a test-fit :-}) it would leave ~2.5" uncovered over the power supply (which as per Glenn's photos in along the right-hand side of the chassis).
To view this discussion on the web visit https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/sebhc/09cf01d7f071%24ce2a2c40%246a7e84c0%24%40gmail.com.

Glenn Roberts

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Dec 14, 2021, 6:57:18 AM12/14/21
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Since it's a single sheet of metal with just two bends and three holes the H11 lid would be one of the easier pieces of Heath sheet metal to reproduce. I will take some measurements.

I would also not hesitate to use a solid lid on one of our modern H8s. With switched (ATX) power supplies with built in fans and step up/down regulators there simply isn't a heat problem

glenn.f...@gmail.com

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Dec 17, 2021, 8:13:06 PM12/17/21
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Huge shout out to Dave McGuire who gave to me "spare" time he really didn't have.

I now have the H11 running RT-11 off a small prototype board Dave developed that emulates a DEC TU-58 tape drive. Very cool to see this baby come alive!

https://photos.app.goo.gl/uxcTqvMC7cF6GZqs9
https://photos.app.goo.gl/nzGifCi1mv4uQU4v8
https://photos.app.goo.gl/M5qAzNiCKvaNXEnD9

thanks a million Dave!

- Glenn



-----Original Message-----
From: Glenn Roberts <glenn.f...@gmail.com>
Sent: Monday, December 13, 2021 5:36 PM
To: se...@googlegroups.com

norberto.collado koyado.com

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Dec 17, 2021, 8:25:38 PM12/17/21
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WOW! I'm impressed and congratulations in getting such system running again. 🙂

Joseph Travis

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Dec 17, 2021, 9:06:48 PM12/17/21
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That is AWESOME!

Steven Hirsch

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Dec 18, 2021, 12:13:42 AM12/18/21
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On 12/17/21 8:13 PM, glenn.f...@gmail.com wrote:
> Huge shout out to Dave McGuire who gave to me "spare" time he really didn't
> have.
>
> I now have the H11 running RT-11 off a small prototype board Dave developed
> that emulates a DEC TU-58 tape drive. Very cool to see this baby come
> alive!
>
> https://photos.app.goo.gl/uxcTqvMC7cF6GZqs9
> https://photos.app.goo.gl/nzGifCi1mv4uQU4v8
> https://photos.app.goo.gl/M5qAzNiCKvaNXEnD9

Welcome to the H-11 world! Very interesting machines.

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