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About this blog

Mostly blogs showing off my hardware hacks, mostly Atari 8-bit related, a couple of 7800 and Jaguar blogs will be done and I now have my first retro computer in 15 years besides Atari 8-bits: the TRS-80 Coco 2. I am already upgrading the Coco. I will also be redoing a blog that was lost on a defunct forum about restoring a Bally Arcade and many other blogging adventures in retro refurbishing, restoring, customizing, upgrading and hacking the hardware.

Entries in this blog

Sears Video Arcade II (Atari 2800-Japan) Restoration

I found a console only buy-it-now listing on eBay for $35 as an "untested for parts or repair only" and thought I'd get it for just the case shell to install a 7800 into it for what I think is a much classier and ageless aesthetic style case to the NTSC or PAL 7800 case styles. I thought this was the perfect candidate with a case in good, if grungy, condition. And when I opened her up, it was far worse looking on the inside with Mud Wasp nests and a good amount of rust all over the shielding and

Gunstar

Gunstar

Adding a keyboard (and other upgrades) to the Bally Professional Arcade

Prelude   Now that the Bally Arcade is restored, it's time for some upgrades. The Bally Arcade and Astrocade systems were designed to be upgraded into full computers that keyboards, printers and even a light pen could be added too. Officially none of these items or a memory upgrade were ever released by Bally or the later company called Astrocade that purchased the Bally Arcade from Bally. Both promised solutions but all turned out to be vaporware and I don't think prototypes were even

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Gunstar

Bally Professional Arcade, Montgomery Ward model: complete restoration

I put a blog about it up on Atari Owners Club forum site but had intended to bring it here too for a while and I am finally doing it. Other "coming soon" blogs are all blogs I had written before on the now defunct Atari Sector forums and I believe them to be lost forever, or at least I've no idea how to retrieve them an in the end decide it easier to redo them all from scratch. I still have most of the photos, so it's just collecting them into one folder and then re-writing the processes. But th

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Gunstar

My new TRS-80 Coco 2: First look and immediate upgrade and modding

I have been keeping an eye out on about half a dozen different brands of 8-bit micros over the past couple of years, looking to finally branch out from my Atari 8-bit roots. I have had C64's, VIC-20's, Apple IIc's & Laser 128's pass through my hands in the last 20 years, especially back in the early 2000's when all could be had for dirt cheap still at thrift stores and flea markets. I use to buy them up, repair and restore them and then eventually resell for a profit after I played with them

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Gunstar

My custom Atari 800CX : The upgrade and mod evolution from a stock 800

REWRITTEN AS OF 12/07/21. NOT QUITE COMPLETE  AS OF 12/11/21; just more pictures to add in.           This is my blog on all the upgrades, modifications and hacks that have turned a standard 800 into a machine that is still the original vision of Jay Miner's 'Colleen' 800 at heart, and still fully compatible, but includes advancements and upgrades that Atari and Jay never envisioned over 40 years ago. Not just internal upgrades, but port and case modifications too. And finally, a

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AtariLab Interface: Investigating and modifying

AtariLab Interface modding and hacking   The AtariLab Interface is a peripheral that plugs into the controller port(s) of the 400/800/XL/XE machines and as many can be used as you have controller ports for. Originally the Interface came in the 'AtariLab starter set' which was to be the main kit in a series of educational experiment software and hardware modules. The 'starter set' came with one Interface and tools and software cartridge for the first module, the temperature module. Do t

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Converting an analog TRS-80 Color Computer mouse to the Atari 8-bit

Soon to be a blog on converting an analog mouse ( that uses potentiometers instead of digital grey code). A perfect controller to convert to Atari to use in place of paddle controlled games and graphic art and desktop environments that are compatible with or use drivers for the Atari Touch Tablet, Koala Pad and Super Graphics pad. There will be micro switches added to adjust potentiometers for instant compatibility with them all!  

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Atari and I: my blog of growing up with the 1st generation of Personal Computers

My first experience with Atari, was the Atari VCS like many of my generation. Before that I had a Coleco Telstar Pong clone and I didn't even get the Atari VCS until just as the video game crash was starting in '83, when it was on sale and tons of games could be had out of the $.99 bargain bin. Also that same year I got a Timex/Sinclair 1000 with 16K ram-pack, also out of a bargain bin, and spent two years scraping for software for a discontinued line in the U.S. I was ready to upgrade to a Time

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AirCars for the Jaguar, the long road home.

Well, this is the first time I have ever done a "blog" in my life, my topic is just based on a game I've been playing lately for my Atari Jaguar, and decided to "blog' about it on the spur of the moment because if nothing else, the game has an interesting history.   AirCars is the game. Developed by a company called Midnite Entertainment, it was one of the earliest anounced Jaguar games and one of the first Jaguar games seen in advertisements in console magazines. It was to be one of t

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