New project: An ACT Apricot F1 "barn find"

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stephen_usher
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New project: An ACT Apricot F1 "barn find"

Post by stephen_usher » Wed Apr 21, 2021 10:44 am

I've just done something silly and won an eBay auction for a rather damaged ACT Apricot F1. (£20 + shipping)

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It definitely looks as if it's been in a leaky barn for years and has crush damage. Something very heavy has been on top and bent the rather thick steel shielding.

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I'll have to see what it's really like when it arrives (these photos are from the eBay listing). Still, it has an Aztec power supply so the first thing to do will be to replace the RIFA smoke generators.

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I may have to have a look at the floppy... :lol:

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Thankfully there's are (almost) full technical documentation for the machine on-line, including circuit schematics. It's all built out of 74LS logic other than the memory (4164 chips), CPU (8086) and a couple of other chips so it should be salvagable.

The ACT Apricot line of machines are quite an interesting set, being MSDOS but not IBM PC compatible. Stylish designs and the first machines outside of Japan to use 3.5" floppy disks, even if they're a strange 70 track ones running at an odd rotational speed.

Anyway, this could well be a fun little repair project for the Summer which I'll document here.
Intro retro computers since before they were retro...
ZX81->Spectrum->Memotech MTX->Sinclair QL->520STM->BBC Micro->TT030->PCs & Sun Workstations.
Added code to the MiNT kernel (still there the last time I checked) + put together MiNTOS.
Collection now with added Macs, Amigas, Suns and Acorns.

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rubber_jonnie
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Re: New project: An ACT Apricot F1 "barn find"

Post by rubber_jonnie » Wed Apr 21, 2021 10:57 am

You've got your hands full there!!

That's definitely the one I saw on eBay :)
Collector of old Atari things:
800XL + Ultimate 1MB, 2x 1010 cassette, 1050 + Happy mod, 65XE (128k +APE Warp) & XC12, SIO2SD, 2600jr, 7800 and Lynx II
Atari 520ST (1Meg), 1040STF long button floppy, 2x 1040 STFMs + Gotek, 2x 4160STE with 32Mhz booster, ROM switcher, Mega ST1, Mega ST4, not to mention various bare ST boards for testing including a PAK 68/2 :)
Plus the rest..
Amiga stuff, Mac stuff, Sinclair stuff etc...
www.electronicnothingness.co.uk

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Steve
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Re: New project: An ACT Apricot F1 "barn find"

Post by Steve » Wed Apr 21, 2021 11:10 am

I did see that on ebay actually, Apricot are quite an interesting line of British computers. A little too esoteric for me though, good luck renovating it :)

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PhilC
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Re: New project: An ACT Apricot F1 "barn find"

Post by PhilC » Wed Apr 21, 2021 11:21 am

Time to buy shares in rust killers.

Good luck, did see an F10 on ebay as well the other day.
If it ain't broke, test it to Destruction.

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rubber_jonnie
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Re: New project: An ACT Apricot F1 "barn find"

Post by rubber_jonnie » Wed Apr 21, 2021 11:31 am

Yup, there's this on eBay right now: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Apricot-Comp ... SwdQRgfEjK
Collector of old Atari things:
800XL + Ultimate 1MB, 2x 1010 cassette, 1050 + Happy mod, 65XE (128k +APE Warp) & XC12, SIO2SD, 2600jr, 7800 and Lynx II
Atari 520ST (1Meg), 1040STF long button floppy, 2x 1040 STFMs + Gotek, 2x 4160STE with 32Mhz booster, ROM switcher, Mega ST1, Mega ST4, not to mention various bare ST boards for testing including a PAK 68/2 :)
Plus the rest..
Amiga stuff, Mac stuff, Sinclair stuff etc...
www.electronicnothingness.co.uk

stephen_usher
Posts: 2073
Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:19 pm
Location: Oxford, UK.
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Re: New project: An ACT Apricot F1 "barn find"

Post by stephen_usher » Wed Apr 21, 2021 12:15 pm

PhilC wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 11:21 am
Time to buy shares in rust killers.

Good luck, did see an F10 on ebay as well the other day.
Yeah, but £85 for "spares or repair" is a bit much. I thought £20 was pushing it! :-)
Intro retro computers since before they were retro...
ZX81->Spectrum->Memotech MTX->Sinclair QL->520STM->BBC Micro->TT030->PCs & Sun Workstations.
Added code to the MiNT kernel (still there the last time I checked) + put together MiNTOS.
Collection now with added Macs, Amigas, Suns and Acorns.

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rubber_jonnie
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Re: New project: An ACT Apricot F1 "barn find"

Post by rubber_jonnie » Wed Apr 21, 2021 12:45 pm

stephen_usher wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 12:15 pm
PhilC wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 11:21 am
Time to buy shares in rust killers.

Good luck, did see an F10 on ebay as well the other day.
Yeah, but £85 for "spares or repair" is a bit much. I thought £20 was pushing it! :-)
I quite agree!! I did find some more further down the listings, but upwards of £150, which is a bit much.
Collector of old Atari things:
800XL + Ultimate 1MB, 2x 1010 cassette, 1050 + Happy mod, 65XE (128k +APE Warp) & XC12, SIO2SD, 2600jr, 7800 and Lynx II
Atari 520ST (1Meg), 1040STF long button floppy, 2x 1040 STFMs + Gotek, 2x 4160STE with 32Mhz booster, ROM switcher, Mega ST1, Mega ST4, not to mention various bare ST boards for testing including a PAK 68/2 :)
Plus the rest..
Amiga stuff, Mac stuff, Sinclair stuff etc...
www.electronicnothingness.co.uk

stephen_usher
Posts: 2073
Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:19 pm
Location: Oxford, UK.
Contact:

Re: New project: An ACT Apricot F1 "barn find"

Post by stephen_usher » Wed Apr 21, 2021 1:00 pm

rubber_jonnie wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 12:45 pm
stephen_usher wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 12:15 pm


Yeah, but £85 for "spares or repair" is a bit much. I thought £20 was pushing it! :-)
I quite agree!! I did find some more further down the listings, but upwards of £150, which is a bit much.
The £150 one was for just a monitor and keyboard for an Apricot PC or Xi and no computer at all.
Intro retro computers since before they were retro...
ZX81->Spectrum->Memotech MTX->Sinclair QL->520STM->BBC Micro->TT030->PCs & Sun Workstations.
Added code to the MiNT kernel (still there the last time I checked) + put together MiNTOS.
Collection now with added Macs, Amigas, Suns and Acorns.

User avatar
rubber_jonnie
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Re: New project: An ACT Apricot F1 "barn find"

Post by rubber_jonnie » Wed Apr 21, 2021 1:01 pm

stephen_usher wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 1:00 pm
rubber_jonnie wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 12:45 pm


I quite agree!! I did find some more further down the listings, but upwards of £150, which is a bit much.
The £150 one was for just a monitor and keyboard for an Apricot PC or Xi and no computer at all.
Yikes, I didn't read it too deeply and didn't realise. Daylight robbery!!
Collector of old Atari things:
800XL + Ultimate 1MB, 2x 1010 cassette, 1050 + Happy mod, 65XE (128k +APE Warp) & XC12, SIO2SD, 2600jr, 7800 and Lynx II
Atari 520ST (1Meg), 1040STF long button floppy, 2x 1040 STFMs + Gotek, 2x 4160STE with 32Mhz booster, ROM switcher, Mega ST1, Mega ST4, not to mention various bare ST boards for testing including a PAK 68/2 :)
Plus the rest..
Amiga stuff, Mac stuff, Sinclair stuff etc...
www.electronicnothingness.co.uk

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PhilC
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Re: New project: An ACT Apricot F1 "barn find"

Post by PhilC » Wed Apr 21, 2021 1:05 pm

Even £20 is too expensive for me but then 8086 stuff just isn't my thing.
If it ain't broke, test it to Destruction.

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