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TRS 80 Model 4, worked for a couple of hrs then quit


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#1 John3040

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Posted 11 July 2015 - 01:24 PM

I bought an old RadioShack TRS 80, Model 4. It was stored in their garage for about 30 years. I've got a bunch of old 5 1/4" floppies and an 18 Meg TRS 80 External HD I want to access.
I brought the computer home yesterday, booted it up. Got a TRSDOS Ready prompt and loaded Scripsit, using drive 0, the 1st drive. It wouldn't access drive 1, the 2nd, uppermost drive. Then, after working with it a while, it suddenly wouldn't access anything.
Now, when I try to boot it, drive 0 runs the red light goes on but no sounds as thought it's trying to access the floppy, then it just stops. If I put in a floppy upside down, and try to boot, the word diskette appears on the screen, the red light goes on and the drive turns until I remove the upside down floppy.
Any suggestions on how to troubleshoot the problem?

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#2 brainout

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Posted 13 July 2015 - 04:40 AM

Did you clean the drives?  I don't remember exactly, but I would swear there were special diskettes you would run in the drives to clean them.  Had to do that often with the 286's, but I don't remember having to do it with theTRS-80.

 

That's the problem with those disks, you have to run the cleaning disks in the drive every 100 hours of use or so. Try googling for cleaner 5.25" diskettes.  I don't have any.  It's kinda like having to clean VHS.  There's a special kit with some alcohol-based liquid and a special floppy whose exposed media is white like paper felt. The cleaner goes on the felt, then you insert it in the drive, then it runs for 30 seconds or so.  Then you keep on doing that.

 

Since the machine has been sitting for so long, it's like a car which sat too long.  You might have to do the cleaning over and over again before it will boot.

 

The word 'diskette' appears on the screen because (you guessed it), it's telling you something's amiss with the floppy, i.e., it's put in upside down.


Edited by brainout, 13 July 2015 - 04:46 AM.

(Away, Notifications Off) AUDIT PREMISES, my guidon.  -- brainout or brainouty on vimeo or Youtube, domain brainout.net


#3 ship_kicker

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Posted 30 August 2015 - 10:46 AM

http://retrotechnology.com/herbs_stuff/clean_disks.html

This looks like a good website for help on cleaning floppy drives.  I had to clean the heads on my old 5.25inch drive recently for my 486 and in the process removed a crap load of dust.



#4 dna9

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Posted 04 March 2016 - 10:41 AM

ya sounds like either the drives are dirty like the above posters have said or they are pooped out and are bad or the data on the floppys is corrupt.  have fun, i have an AMIGA 500 that i bought new.  i used to love that thing and it STILL works.



#5 GoofProg

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Posted 12 June 2017 - 11:09 AM

I think radio shack went all the day to the color computer 3.  That one not many people know.  It was like a nintendo quality machine.  I think it ranks up with the Commodore 128D.  Most of the old crap can be repaired by a electronic enthusiast.  The chips and processors can be ordered through catalogs that students in universities have access to.  The electronic components can be soldiered so you know that is the way computer were suppose to be repaired.



#6 dna9

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Posted 12 June 2017 - 11:23 AM

i also have a Timex Sinclair 1000 (TS1000).  works great!






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