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IBM P70 Luggable - Anyone ever see this type of switch?


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I have a IBM P70 386 luggable PC as show here:

 

http://www.computinghistory.org.uk/det/30497/IBM-Model-8573-121/

 

That I am in the process of restoring. It needs a cleaning obviously, but first I want to try to find a left shift key for it. This is the only key that is missing. It was actually broken off when I got this decades ago (it has been in storage for just as long, but boots up and works fine!), but I was able to get the broken piece of keyboard post out of the switch without damage. Does anyone know what other IBM keyboard used this type of switch or have any idea where I can obtain a left shift key that would match this?

 

And yes, again, it need to be thoroughly cleaned...I know it and it will happen soon. Looks like someone trapped an animal underneath these keys!

post-21417-0-16997100-1517983536_thumb.jpg

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Gross. I never want to see an up-close picture of a keyboard ever again. TRAPPED an animal under there, no no, they trapped, killed, and gutted that animal under there. Though, to be fair, I have customers who eat at their desks so I have seen far worse -- just never up-close like that. (At one particular office I have considered wearing gloves when I visit.)

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Gross. I never want to see an up-close picture of a keyboard ever again. TRAPPED an animal under there, no no, they trapped, killed, and gutted that animal under there. Though, to be fair, I have customers who eat at their desks so I have seen far worse -- just never up-close like that. (At one particular office I have considered wearing gloves when I visit.)

 

 

I agree. NONE of my own personal stuff is like this. This was a yard sale find for $3 that basically sat in a garage after I purchased it until such time that I can see if it was viable to work on. It is I think as it boots up, screen is bright and clear, the case is clean...but that keyboard. Yeah..

 

Don't fret however. I am a master of cleaning gross stuff like this and making it indistinguishable from new. But with this one I will be doing that outside ;)

Edited by eightbit
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I have a IBM P70 386 luggable PC as show here:

 

I have two of those systems with special 486 kits installed. Red gas plasma display is insanely cool.

I would think any ps/2 key from that era would work?

 

How's the floppy drive? They typically don't work but are easy to retrofit and make it look stock. Only thing I couldn't do is keep the blue eject button.

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I am not sure which keyboard to look for for this type of key and I don;t have spares :) SO I would have to buy a keyboard...but I want to make sure the shift key will work before I do :)

 

No, the floppy drive tries to seek but is dead. I'll have to do something similar to what you did.

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Took it all apart today and cleaned it. Oddly enough the only part with any hair was the area that I photographed! The rest was pretty spotless...go figure. A tiny bit of dust in the case but nothing major. The battery did not explode which is a plus. Nice how it sits off of the motherboard components and is attached to the casing.

 

Still do not have that key, but the machine is mostly functional. I say mostly as the floppy drive is dead. The motor does not spin. I will have to wire power into that area so that a standard floppy drive can be used, or keep my eye out for a working stock replacement.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, I cleaned the heck out of this beast, replaced the floppy drive with a working one, wiped the hard drive (and the porn from the 80's) and installed DOS 6.22 and Windows 3.11. It works and looks great now. I still need the shift key though!

post-21417-0-54469600-1519014192_thumb.jpg

post-21417-0-54174400-1519014224_thumb.jpg

post-21417-0-51815700-1519014405_thumb.jpg

Edited by eightbit
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Which is why I use the Media Vision Audio Port for the audio ;) Not that it is any easier to find though...but I found one in the wild some time ago for cheap so hey ;)

 

This is lso a good alternative when they are available:

 

http://www.the8bitguy.com/product/opl2lpt-ad-lib-compatible-parallel-sound-card/

Edited by eightbit
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The only drawback with the Media Vision Audio Port is that the driver included only works in Windows 3.11. They never bothered to write a DOS compatible driver. Now I am curious if the device contains the same Yamaha OPL inside and if the driver for the OPL2LPT would work with it. I plan on trying that this weekend. Fingers crossed as it is a really sweet device:

 

https://books.google.com/books?id=jcrsPJb76HAC&pg=PT167&lpg=PT167&dq=Media+Vision+Audio+Port&source=bl&ots=pq2YwTDbGc&sig=GzPrtZ3DgV_u6FdEVjQCDqr5el4&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjfuaT0wLjZAhWxmOAKHfgeBl8Q6AEIZzAJ#v=onepage&q=Media%20Vision%20Audio%20Port&f=false

Edited by eightbit
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OPL3LPT is coming shortly. There are happenings in the parallel sound world ;)

 

The Audio Port is a slammin device. I like it a lot. I tried the DOS drivers from the OPL2LPT with it and...nothing. So I suppose it is not using the same Yamaha chip or some other hardware difference. I will probably get the OPL3LPT when it is available...but then I think it will be DOS sound and no Windows 3.11 sound....ehhh you can't win.

Edited by eightbit
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It's cool seeing someone else with a P70.

 

Here's some photos of mine and what's under the hood.

Kingston AOS 486 upgrade kit, 120mb HD and 64mb of memory...this thing had to be a screaming hot rod back in the day!

I also have a second one that's an identical twin. I'm guessing the Kingston kit in each is extremely rare; I found an old magazine review and it was $2,500.00.

 

About a year ago I got a bunch of vintage stuff for free off a Craigslist ad and these were part of it. I was there mainly for the TRS-80 stuff, and after debating, I decided to grab two of these as they seemed somewhat interesting. Here's the bad part...I left at least 4 more behind as I didn't think much of them at the time.

 

They were very clean and worked perfect except for the floppy drives. I bought some brand new Memorex drives off Amazon for about $6 bucks each and they fit beautifully. Unfortunately I couldn't swap out the blue eject button from the originals.

 

p70a.jpg

 

p70b.jpg

 

p70c.jpg

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That looks a bit nicer than mine ;) I am glad someone else has one of these as well as now I have to ask you for the exact part numbers on your memory and Kingston expansion so I can track these now and upgrade mine a bit. I found the math co-processor (80387dx-20) and have that coming and have time again thanks to this:

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000K2K3M8/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

 

Ohh, and how do you enter the BIOS?

Edited by eightbit
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I think I've been in the BIOS once just to see what it was like and you need a special reference disk, you can't just press a key and boot into it. There is good info here on that...

https://www.cemetech.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=2925

 

This is an old article on what I believe I have...

https://books.google.com/books?id=F6anv43MXVcC&pg=PA171&lpg=PA171&dq=kingston+micromaster+486&source=bl&ots=8_M3S92tAt&sig=GRT7EJhuPMkLkbMs8JnfoYmV_as&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiuxuipsMDZAhWJ3oMKHU0RBXQQ6AEINDAC#v=onepage&q=kingston%20micromaster%20486&f=false

 

I pulled the covers off both and the boards don't have much information on them. I see the processors have been upgraded on both. One is an Intel with a heat sink and I think it's rated at 75 mhz (benchmark gets flaky with it and claims 420 mhz). The other has a small fan and it's running at 133 mhz. Pressing o at boot up goes back to the original 386 and it's running at 20 mhz according to the benchmark. Big difference!

 

Memory is a mix and the system doesn't seem to mind. You can also see the additional memory on the AOX board. I'll post some full res pictures of everything including one AOX board removed and one memory module removed (click for full size).

 

You may want to save these pics if you find them useful. My server space is limited so I'll eventually delete them.

 

mb2.jpg

 

mb.jpg

 

 

mb0.jpg

 

 

mbm1.jpg

 

 

 

mbm2.jpg

Edited by Turbo-Torch
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I added the math co-processor to this today and while it works fine I get a 162 IBM error on POST each time. It can be bypassed by pressing F1. I know it is a configuration changed error...I just need to make the reference disk and update the BIOS settings which I plan to do this weekend. Otherwise I am pretty amazed at the performance increase just adding the co-processor. Everything is significantly faster. Well worth the $20!

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Created the reference disk this morning (thanks for the link, that was VERY helpful!) and updated the configuration so now no error. Really great upgrade. The performance in some windows games (like Microsoft Pool) is really where you can see the difference with the math co-processor installed.

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Created the reference disk this morning (thanks for the link, that was VERY helpful!) and updated the configuration so now no error. Really great upgrade. The performance in some windows games (like Microsoft Pool) is really where you can see the difference with the math co-processor installed.

 

Have you hooked a VGA monitor up to it yet? I need to get an adapter as there was something odd about the connector...I think it was an extra pin that serves no purpose.

 

I had a giant box of old cables I gave away and I'm still kicking myself over that because I didn't realize several of them were drive B: cables for the P70.

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Well, I cleaned the heck out of this beast, replaced the floppy drive with a working one, wiped the hard drive (and the porn from the 80's) and installed DOS 6.22 and Windows 3.11. It works and looks great now. I still need the shift key though!

 

You could have show a least one pic of the 80's porn on that totally rad futuristic red plasma screen, you know - for Posterity. ;)

 

Kids today don't know how good they have it. :roll:

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Seriously, though, have you pulled of another key cap?

That one looks broken.

You might just have a cherry still switch with the cross broken off.

 

 

Nope, they are all like this. Very unique switch. The plastic from the shift key was still in the hole when I got it, and it was not a traditional Cherry cross. It is the shape of that cap. I had someone else that sells keys online look at it and he said he was aware of this unique switch but did not have any keys in stock for it :(

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