Need crash course in HP41 HP-IL stuff



#9

I am awaiting delivery on an HP-IL module and HP-IL thermal printer from one of our members. This is an admittedly rather expensive alternative to a straight replacement of the 82143 printer I recently murdered, so I am obviously interested in exploring other peripherals to make the HP-IL module acquistion, which cost quite a bit more than the printer, truly worthwhile.

What should I be trying to acquire? Keep in mind I am not a sophisticate when it comes to these things. In the most basic sense, I guess you could say I am interested in mass storage, like the cassette drive, and in particular means to get HP41 programs to and from a modern day Windows XP PC--i.e. I don't want to have to deal with an old computer running DOS just to manipulate and transfer HP programs. This does not strike me as something for the faint of heart--I looked at the RS232 inteface manual on our DVD and was utterly perplexed. I alse surmised that the serial connector in question is not the same as that on my 48G serial cable or the old serial mouse I know longer use. On of our members has suggested to me the CMT 512K RAM Box with built in RS232 interface, which sounds positively fascinating but I would like to know more about what it could do for me before I break the piggy bank yet again.

Thanks for your wisdom.

Les

Edited: 8 Mar 2007, 6:26 a.m.


#10

I still do quite a bit with HPIL on the HP41 and HP71, but my PC runs (an ancient version of) linux, so some of what I say will not be directly applicable to you.

The first _essential_ is the extended I/O module for the HP41. Without it, you can't do most useful things to HPIL devices. If you only have the 82162 printer and 82161 tape drive, I guess you'll be OK without the extended I/O module, but for any other devices (like the RS232 interface) it's a must!

The HPIL Development ROM (DevIL module) is useful, but suprisingly I use it less than the Extended I/O ROM

Forget the 82161 cassette drive unless you want to read old tapes. It's not really a practical solution for mass storage now, the tapes are hard to find (they're not standard audio tapes, not even mini or micro cassettes), and they tend to be unreliable.

If you can find one, get a 9114 disk drive (IMHO it doesn't matter whether it's a -A or -B, and I do have both). It uses DD floppy disks (aka '720K disks') which are not that hard to find. And you can read them on a PC -- there is software for MS-DOS and linux to do this.

The 82164 RS232 interface is 'interesting' (in the sense of 'may you live in interesting times' :-)). I have got it to talk to my linux PC, but I did have to wire up a special cable (I can give you details of the connections), and sorting it out involved a few long nights with a breakout box and the 82164 user and service manuals. I see no reason why it can't talk to a Windows machine, or to a modern machine via a USB-RS232 interface, but, not having any such hardware I can't talk you through it.

Those are, IMHO the essentials (disk drive and RS232). Other 'fun' devices include the 2225B (Thinkjet printer), 7470 Opt 003 (pen plotter), 82165/82166 (parallel interface modules, I use them a lot to link to homebrew projects), 82169 (HPIB interface).


#11

This is very informative.

I think right now the most useful addition I can think of is the diskette drive. I do have a floppy drive on my PC and tons of 3.5" floppies that are easily formatted as single density.

Does the PC based software for reading these disks work in DOS box under Windows XP, or do I need a proper pre-Windows 95 DOS machine? Is the disk format out of the 9114 drive readable under DOS and Windows XP, or would my computer simply regard such 3.5" single density floppies as unformatted disks?

The member who has been writing to me about the CMT RAM box/RS232 interface mentioned both the Extended I/0 Module and the Extended IL modules, like they were different things, but I must admit I have never heard of the latter and can't find a manual for it on the DVD. Can someone enlighten me?

I do have a small size serial port on my computer so I expect that if I got any RS232 interface I would need a 25-to-9 pin adapter to connect. Is it any more complicated than that? I did get a USB-to-serial adapter cheap once to try to connect the 48G to USB, but it doesn't work. I do know that an expensive Dynex adapter works with the 48G cable and an old serial mouse, but I took it back after I put the cheap one on order. False economy! I guess I could splurge the 50 bucks again and get another if I ever replace the computer for one without a serial port.

I have looked into Clonix and MLDL but there seems to be a bit of a hi-tech DIY requirement here. I just made a mess of my 82143 printer with a soldering iron, so I shouldn't be trying to build delicate electronics.

Also, let's say I just got the disk drive and couldn't find the Extended I/O Module. Would I be able to do basic read/write operations to the disk without it? Does that basic functionality exist in an IL with only the disk and the HP-IL module?

Many thanks for guiding me.

Les


#12

I guess I should ask the most basic question of all:

What is a fair price for these things? I must confess I have positively no clue. One of our members mentioned to me an Extended I/O module and 9114 drive, and I threw out a very tentative first offer based on my experience regarding other tough to find HP41 modules and peripherals, but I fear I may have egregiously insulted him! Also, one of our members recent put a 512K CMT RAM drive up for auction, and the starting bid is much higher than I possibly could've guessed. Suffice to say I am really in the dark when it comes to pricing this stuff, so I am grateful for guidance. I want to pay a fair value to those who wish to sell me their stuff, but I don't want to get soaked either.

Many thanks,

Les

Edited: 9 Mar 2007, 6:11 a.m. after one or more responses were posted


#13

And another question:

If all I am really interested in with the 9114 is basic reading and writing to the disk, could I survive with just the HP-IL modules READP and WRTP functions? Could I get away without the Extended IO module if I don't plan on anything more fancy than this?

It is appearing to me that the Extended IO module could be more expensive than the disk drive itself, and if I don't really need it for basic storage and retrival operations I would be happy to give it a pass.

Les

#14

Quote:
This is very informative.

I think right now the most useful addition I can think of is the diskette drive. I do have a floppy drive on my PC and tons of 3.5" floppies that are easily formatted as single density.


Actually, it's double density. The 1.44M disks are 'high density'.

However, there are 2 problems with using 1.44M disks (PC 'HD' disks) in the 9114. The first is that the coercivity of the media is different. The 2 values are close, but not the same. This may not be reliable.

The second is that the 'HD detect hole' -- the extra hole that tells the PC that it's an HD disk -- lines up with the disk-inserted sensor in the 9114's drive and the latter will not recognise it has a disk inserted. A bit of tape over the hole will fix that.

But personally I'd look for some real DD disks.


Quote:

Does the PC based software for reading these disks work in DOS box under Windows XP, or do I need a proper pre-Windows 95 DOS machine? Is the disk format out of the 9114 drive readable under DOS and Windows XP, or would my computer simply regard such 3.5" single density floppies as unformatted disks?


A PC will not recognise the disks. The low-level format is totally different (the HP disk is 77 cylinders, 2 heads, 16 sectors/track, 256 bytes/sector, the PC (720K) format is 80 cylinders, 2 heads, 9 sectors/track, 512 bytes/sector).

Quote:

The member who has been writing to me about the CMT RAM box/RS232 interface mentioned both the Extended I/0 Module and the Extended IL modules, like they were different things, but I must admit I have never heard of the latter and can't find a manual for it on the DVD. Can someone enlighten me?


The Extended IL module (XIL) was a third-party ROM that allowed the HP41 to easilly use the entire capacity of the floppy disk, to print listings efficiently on an 80 column printer, and so on.

I don't use it. If I need a program listing on 'wide' paper, I transfer the HP41 program to the PC, and run it through a couple of programs there that firstly produce a listing and then reformat it as I want.

Quote:


I do have a small size serial port on my computer so I expect that if I got any RS232 interface I would need a 25-to-9 pin adapter to connect. Is it any more complicated than that? I did get a USB-to-serial adapter cheap once to try to connect the 48G to USB, but it doesn't work. I do know that an expensive Dynex adapter works with the 48G cable and an old serial mouse, but I took it back after I put the cheap one on order. False economy! I guess I could splurge the 50 bucks again and get another if I ever replace the computer for one without a serial port.


The 82164 RS232 interface has a male DB25 plug on it. An internal jumper block lets you configure it either as DTE (terminal) or DCE (modem). You will therefore need the right adapters to link it to your PC DE9 connector

Personally I find the only sane way to use the 82164 is to leave that jumper block in the 'DTE' position and wire up the appropriate cables to get the signals where I want them for the other device. But then I think nothing about taking a soldering iron to a bit of hardware.

The reason it was more complicated for me is that I wanted to be able to transfer HP71 binary files. This meant I couldn't use XON/XOFF handshaking, I had to use hardware handshaking (some form of handshaking/flow control is essential or you will lose characters). And the 82164 uses the handshake lines in a somewhat odd way.

Quote:

Also, let's say I just got the disk drive and couldn't find the Extended I/O Module. Would I be able to do basic read/write operations to the disk without it? Does that basic functionality exist in an IL with only the disk and the HP-IL module?


Yes. You can use the disk drive with the normal commands for the cassette drive (they're in the ROM in the 82160 HPIL module, you don't need any other modules), but you can only use the first 128K of each disk. That's actually quite a lot of storage for an HP41, so you may be satisfied with that.


#15

One thing I forgot to mention is that the Extended I/O (or HPIL Development) ROM is pretty much essential to use the RS232 interface. You can't change any of the communication parameters (baud rate, handshake, etc) without it.

#16

Quote:
Yes. You can use the disk drive with the normal commands for the cassette drive (they're in the ROM in the 82160 HPIL module, you don't need any other modules), but you can only use the first 128K of each disk. That's actually quite a lot of storage for an HP41, so you may be satisfied with that.

Actually I would be ecstatic with that.

128K holds the equivalent of about 570 magnetic cards, if I have my math correct. That is pretty impressive. If I could get a 9114 just to make back-ups of my mag cards, of which I have at most a few dozen, I would be positively tickled.

And I believe I have some real DD disks around here someplace. Not many, but I don't need many.

BTW, if a PC can't read a 9114 formatted floppy, how does LIFUTL work?

Thanks for the excellent information.

Les


#17

Quote:
And I believe I have some real DD disks around here someplace.

and even if I don't, I am finding these things cheaply on eBay with a cursory search. I am seeing around 5 bucks plus shipping for a 10 pack. That's 5700 magnetic cards, or 2850 if I make two back up sets. That would keep me busy for years....

Les

#18

Quote:
BTW, if a PC can't read a 9114 formatted floppy, how does LIFUTL work?

I have found a couple of DD disks around here that format fine as FAT but when I try to initialize them to the appropriate format using LIFUTL I get an "error at track 0" message.

So I am starting to get the point.

I will try to keep an eye peeled for an old x86 machine. If it has DOS and LIFUTL, I am off to the races, since I really only need it to get programs on to the diskettes. I can do all of the editting and compiling to LIF or RAW format on my newer machine, where hp41uc works beautifully.

For this purpose, will any x86 series machine do, or does it have to be a really slow one, like a 286? If a 386, 486, or early Pentium machine will work, that would be great--indeed, I have an old Pentium 120 laptop, about 11 years old. Dead screen but the video output works fine. Needs DOS though, and I think my old MSDOS 6.22 disks have been toasted.... Any thoughts? I could try to turn the old laptop into a Linux box, but frankly that is a little complex for my blood. I am sure MSDOS can be found cheaply or for free.

On of our fellow contributors has offered me a 9114 for a superb price, so I look forward to experimenting with that. If I can use my old laptop as a transfer medium, then this would keep me happy, though I know I will want the convenience of the RS232 interface eventually....

Eager for more opinions,

Les


#19

I had mixed luck with Linux on a Compaq Pentium/70 system. It worked better under DOS, which I had set up dual boot with Linux.

I got my DOS 6.22 from eBay. There's also FreeDOS

Shoehorning a modern Linux distro onto an old PC isn't easy. I ended up going with Slackware, as it was the only one whose installer would run in 32MB of RAM.

Don't forget those ISA slots if you get an old DOS PC. Cristoph's card or the HP 82973A ISA card it clones work really well with JF's EMU41 and EMU71.

Regards,
Howard

#20

I have used a 9114 (either version, A or B) with an HP41 with the 82160 HPIL module and no other ROMs.

The normal PC hardware can be programmed to read (and write) a LIF formatted disk, but standard PC software doesn't do it. That's why you need the LIFUTILS pacakge or equivalent.

#21

Quote:
Yes. You can use the disk drive with the normal commands for the cassette drive (they're in the ROM in the 82160 HPIL module, you don't need any other modules), but you can only use the first 128K of each disk. That's actually quite a lot of storage for an HP41, so you may be satisfied with that.

I have communicated with my prospective seller, and even though he has an Extended IO module, it is more expensive than the drive itself and I have decided if I can live without it he should hang on to it for now. Frankly, looking at the HP-IL manual, it seems I am interested really in only four mass storage commands--NEWM, to format the floppies, WRTP to write programs to the floppies, READP to recall them to the calculator, and DIR to see what's on the disk. If I get into the RS232 interface, I will need the extended functions IO, but right now since I am just interested in basic reading and writing to disk I will spare myself the extravagance of the expensive module but consider myself lucky to find a 9114 drive from a considerate collector at a good price.

Les

#22

Quote:
Forget the 82161 cassette drive unless you want to read old tapes. It's not really a practical solution for mass storage now. The tapes are hard to find (they're not standard audio tapes, not even mini or micro cassettes), and they tend to be unreliable.
What kind of problems did you have? I used my 82161A drive a lot in the 1980's and never had any problem of any kind with it or the tapes. It proved to be 100% reliable. The cost per kilobyte was sure high though! OTOH, a kilobyte went a long way on a 41.

I haven't used the tape drive in years though, even though I use my 41 every day, because the 41cx has enough memory to simultaneously hold all the programs I need and it never loses memory. (One program I often use has been in the 41's memory continuously for almost 20 years.) I don't have the card reader. What I've been doing in recent years is to write programs in a text editor on the PC so I can put more than one instruction on a line and add lots of comments, and when I'm happy with it, key it into the 41, where it stays until I'm done with it. With the 71 nearby and the other computers around however, my HP-41 programs these days are seldom even 100 steps; and in the unlikely event that I accidentally delete one before I'm done, the small amount of time it would take to key it back in would be trivial compared to the time and money and uncertainty involved in buying a tape drive on eBay if I didn't already have one.

E-mail: wilsonmineszdslextremezcom (replace the z's with @ and .


#23

Quote:

What kind of problems did you have? I used my 82161A drive a lot in the 1980's and never had any problem of any kind with it or the tapes. It proved to be 100% reliable. The cost per kilobyte was sure high though! OTOH, a kilobyte went a long way on a 41.


It was probably fine when the tapes were new...

The problems I have had (and in fact I wrote an article in Datafile (HPCC journal) several years ago about this) include :

The pressure pad in the cassette decaying and no longer holding the tape against the read/write head

The tape coming detached from the leader

The tape shedding oxide.

Even NOS tapes can suffer from the above, and the tapes haven't been made for years AFAIK.

#24

I second much of what Tony said. I can confirm that the RS232 interface works with Linux (and Windows XP) and a USB to serial adapter. I was able to make the connection without extensive cable hacking, other than a 25 to 9 pin adapter and a 9 pin gender bender.

The simplest solution for getting software from your 41 to your PC is the 9114 floppy, as Tony points out. I've had less luck going the other way with just the floppy drive. What I use for that is an old PC (Pentium II/400, 256 MB of RAM) that has a single ISA slot. In that I place one of Cristoph Klug's HP-IL ISA cards. I drive it from Debian Linux directly, or via DOSEMU/FreeDOS, which are a Free Software 286 emulator and DOS 6.22 work alike respectively. In this environment I run various tools, but especially JF Garnier's 41 and 71 emulators. These give me complete flexibility in moving bits around between the 20th and 21st centuries.

I also agree that the extended I/O ROM makes the 41 a lot more capable with HP-IL. Unless you are motivated to collect old ROMs, I would suggest you look into acquiring a NovRAM32 or MLDL2000 rather than the ext-io ROM itself. These can be loaded with a variety of old ROMs from images available on the Internet. They are no doubt much cheaper than any classic MLDL you might find on eBay or elsewhere, and they each come with software to talk to a modern Windows PC. In fact, beating around the bush a little, you could configure either device to emulate a HEPAX with some RAM pages, and fill the latter (using the hex/binary representation) with all the user code you could stuff into them. That would solve the bidirectional file transfer issue in a very cool but geeky way. 8)

Good luck!
Howard


#25

For HP41 & HP-IL I recommend :

IL-Module + Clonix or NoVRAM with ROM image of the EXT-I/O Module

EMU41 fom Jean-Francois Garnier in combination with the HP-IL/PC Interface Card (needs ISA slot) or alternatively the RS232 gateway

Best wishes - Christoph Klug

#26

Quote:
The simplest solution for getting software from your 41 to your PC is the 9114 floppy, as Tony points out. I've had less luck going the other way with just the floppy drive. What I use for that is an old PC (Pentium II/400, 256 MB of RAM) that has a single ISA slot. In that I place one of Cristoph Klug's HP-IL ISA cards. I drive it from Debian Linux directly, or via DOSEMU/FreeDOS, which are a Free Software 286 emulator and DOS 6.22 work alike respectively. In this environment I run various tools, but especially JF Garnier's 41 and 71 emulators. These give me complete flexibility in moving bits around between the 20th and 21st centuries.

Is it really that complex? I did just download LIFUTL and it runs nicely on my PC, and appears to read the floppy drive fine. I am also very adept with Leo Duran's utility, and have no trouble creating raw files and barcode, so creating LIF files and moving them onto a disk can't be too terribly difficult.

I guess I will just have to acquire a 9114 drive and experiment. To start, I would be happy just to have the mass storage capability of the floppies, even if I can never use them as a transfer medium with the PC.

Les


#27

I've had trouble writing files with LIFUTIL. I don't recall at the moment what exactly the issue was. I didn't try awfully hard because I went ahead with the ISA card solution, which I would have pursued anyway for the sheer geekly joy of it. 8) But that means I may have given up on LIFUTIL prematurely.

The 9114 is a very nice add on. It's the fastest and most convenient mass storage you can get for the 41C/71B/75C/Portable, in addition to being at least half of a file transfer solution.

Regards,
Howard

#28

My favourite is the HP-IL Video Interface. It will not help you in data transfer, but when connected to the TV card of your PC it save a lot of printer paper

Meindert


#29

Quote:
My favourite is the HP-IL Video Interface. It will not help you in data transfer, but when connected to the TV card of your PC it save a lot of printer paper

Meindert


But try to get the 80 column one (a 3rd party device). The HP82163 32 column one is much less useful IMHO (I have both).

#30

I have hit the motherlode and a fellow contributor to our community is willing to pass on a 9114 drive for what I consider a very excellent price.

But it needs an adapter and I want to make sure I have the right ones.

I have two 82059B adapters for use with my HP97, dead 82143 printer, and HP-IL thermal printer when I get it. I know this adapter is compatible with the 9114B, but is it usable with other versions of the 9114 in the event that the drive I am getting is not the 9114B? In other words, did all versions of the 9114 drive have the same AC jack and thus took the same adapter?

Many thanks,

Les


#31

The power adapters went through many revisions, but all the ones I've tried (I have about a dozen) are interchangeable. HP used that for many, many computers and peripherals. Here are the ones I know about:

  • HP-97 (91, 92, 95C and 97S?)
  • 41C rechargeable battery pack
  • HP 82143A HP-41C Printer
  • HP 82161A Cassette Drive
  • HP 82162A Printer.
  • HP 82163 HP-IL Video interface
  • HP 82164A HP-IL/RS232-C Interface
  • HP 82169A HP-IL/HP-IB Interface
  • HP 9114/9114B Disc Drive
  • HP 75C/D
  • HP 71B
  • HP 110 Portable and Portable Plus
  • HP 2225B Thinkjet Printer

Those are the ones that I know first-hand use the 82059[ABCD] power supply (or their equivalents for the rest of the world.) I'm sure I'm missing several others.

Regards,
Howard

Edited: 9 Mar 2007, 7:00 p.m.


#32

Thanks Howard. I have the right adapters. I will let the seller know.

#33

Les Wright wrote:

> a fellow contributor to our community is willing to pass on a
> 9114 drive for what I consider a very excellent price.

> But it needs an adapter and I want to make sure I have the right ones.

a) this discussion applies to both 9114A and 9114B. The two models have a lot of differences but they take the same battery packs, floppies etc.

b) The 9114 does not connect directly to the HP82059B adapter. The 82059 connects to the battery pack which in turn slots inside the 9114 battery bay.

As such, an unmodified 9114 without a battery pack is dead in the water. Having said that, I recall seeing (I think on eBay) pictures of an 9114 with an external (home made) power supply which bypassed the battery entirely.

BTW the 82059 cannot, on its own, provide enough power to operate the 9114, it needs a working battery inside the battery pack.

9114 battery packs contain a lead-acid battery which is difficult to replace, but I recall an another thread (couple of years ago) in this forum discussing 9114 batteries.

**vp


#34

Well the seller is powering this thing somehow and claims it works, so I need to clarify with him what is actually going on. Les

#35

Quote:
Les Wright wrote:

> a fellow contributor to our community is willing to pass on a
> 9114 drive for what I consider a very excellent price.

> But it needs an adapter and I want to make sure I have the right ones.

a) this discussion applies to both 9114A and 9114B. The two models have a lot of differences but they take the same battery packs, floppies etc.


I thought the -A battery pack should only be used in the 9114A, but the -B pack could be used in either. Why I don't know, the difference is in the charger circuit (inside the battery pack).

Incidentally, the battery packs for the 9114 are probably dead by now and will need rebuilding. It's a 6V lead-acid battery, the pack
originally contained a 'block battery', but 3 2.5Ah Cyclon cells
fit perfectly into the housing and seem to be easier to obtain.

Quote:

b) The 9114 does not connect directly to the HP82059B adapter. The 82059 connects to the battery pack which in turn slots inside the 9114 battery bay.

As such, an unmodified 9114 without a battery pack is dead in the water. Having said that, I recall seeing (I think on eBay) pictures of an 9114 with an external (home made) power supply which bypassed the battery entirely.


The battery pack connects to the rest of the 9114 via a 2-pin 'mini Jones' connector inside the cavity that the pack fits into. Electrically the socket on the battery pack is connected to the terminals of the lead-acid battery (with a fuse in series, actually).

If you feed 6V DC with the correct polarity to the plug in the drive, the unit will work. That 6V can come from a specially-designed mains power supply. I made up a cable to link the 9114 to my workbench adjustable PSU, works fine.

Quote:

BTW the 82059 cannot, on its own, provide enough power to operate the 9114, it needs a working battery inside the battery pack.


Correct

Quote:

9114 battery packs contain a lead-acid battery which is difficult to replace, but I recall an another thread (couple of years ago) in this forum discussing 9114 batteries.


Difficult to replace or difficult to obtain? Actually fitting the replacement battery is not hard, getting the original type, I believe, is.


#36

I found a drop-in replacement lead-acid battery for my 9114B at Rage Batteries on-line, about $14 a couple years ago. Hopefully they are still available.


#37

I got the HP part number, 88014A, off a battery that is currently powering one of my 9114Bs. Looking at the Rage Battery cross-reference, this one is the replacement part.

Thanks for the reference!

Regards,
Howard


#38

Thanks for all of the information.

I have written my prospective seller and advised him that I know nothing of the electrical or electronic nuances of these things and to clarify what, if anything, I need in order to use the drive. My understanding is that I would need my own 82059B power source since he didn't have a spare one. I also was of the impression that said power source was mandatory to power this thing since, to quote him directly, "their accus are all dead, so you need to use a power cable". I have no idea what an "accu" or "accus" is--I assumed he was referring to the lead acid battery cells. I assumed by power cable he meant the standard HP82059B adapter and nothing more fancy. If he uses a customized arrangement to power his 9114 drives that bypasses the need for working batteries, I need to know what it is to see if I can replicate it.

I have written the gent and have been candid with him as to my perplexity. From him, I seem to be hearing "batteries are dead but everything works fine on AC" yet in this thread I am hearing "drive won't work with dead batteries even with AC plugged in". And you all seem very credible to me! The good news is that if all this thing needs is a replacement SLA cell to drop inside the existing battery pack, these things seem readily available.

Money has not yet changed hands and I am confident all questions will get settled before it does.

Thanks for all of your time on this.

Les


#39

I have run a 9114 on a dead cell - or at any rate, a cell that wouldn't power the device on its own - with an attached 82059 transformer. I'm guessing that there are degrees of "dead." That would allow for what Vassilis said being true at the same time as your seller's statement, even though they seem to contradict each other.

Bottom line, if your seller says it works, then he's representing that it will work for you. If this is a fellow collector, then odds are he will make things right one way or the other.

Regards,
Howard

#40

I've never had a 9114, but I suspect it uses the same NiCd battery pack the Thinkjet used. When mine died, I wasn't about to pay what they were asking for a new one (something like $37), and until I made myself a power supply for it, I actually ran it off a 9V alkaline battery a little bit. Then I built the power supply for fifty cents. I had everything I needed except one diode, and the diode was $.50.

The one thing I didn't like about the tape drive was that it was not made to use standard alkaline batteries. Left to log data in a remote location unattended, a full charge was only good for 4 hours, whereas alkalines would have allowed it to go a whole work day.


#41

Quote:
I've never had a 9114, but I suspect it uses the same NiCd battery pack the Thinkjet used. When mine died, I wasn't about to pay what


Alas not. The Thinkjet takes a 7.2V NiCd pack (6 off sub-C cells
in series, with a fuse and a little charger circuit in the case), the 9114 takes a 6V lead acid battery.

They're physically different too, of course -- the Thinkjet has a couple of metal contacts on the pack and spring terminals in the printer, the 9114 has that 2-pin Jones plug I mentioned.

#42

Seesm like your seller is European. The term 'accu' is typically used for a rechargeable battery, probably NiCad. Same for the power cable, I think it is the adapter.

Meindert

#43

I have gotten some clarification from the seller, and it appears that the unit at least powers up on AC power, so maybe the batteries are not completely flat just yet. However, the seller uses other mass storage media for daily work so the 9114 has not had recent routine use. I was of the impression that this was an active-service unit that is functioning fully off of AC power despite dead or near dead batteries. This little bit of wishful thinking stems entirely from my misinterpretation of the information provided--the seller made no such representation. So you can see now the source of my perplexity--it comes entirely from my misapprehension of the information provided. The seller never made any such claims, and the confusion that ensued is due entirely to me.

If the seller hasn't become totally exasperated with me by this point, I hope to take the unit on an as-is basis, since it really is a very very good deal in any case. The best case scenario I envision is that all it really needs is new SLA cells, which seem to be readily and inexpensively available. As for testing the read/write capacity of the unit, this will be sort of jumping off a cliff at first. I have been advised that in some of these old units the drive heads can stick to the surface of the floppy and there is a risk of damaging the heads if one removes a disk too vigourously or quickly. I have had the exact experience in the floppy drive of an old Hitachi laptop, and I am not keen to repeat it!

Thank you so much for all of the information and clarification. I will let everyone know how it all works out.

Les


#44

If you are going to mess with the battery pack, please remember:

1) There are two Torx screws on the top cover (on either side of the latch -- picture 1)

2) Assuming the two screws are on the side away from you, the other three sides of the cover have small protrusions that help secure it to the base. Be sure not to break any of them.

Apart from these warnings (and the Torx screwdriver) changing the battery inside the pack is trivial (its not even soldered).

Also, Tony Duell wrote:

> Difficult to replace or difficult to obtain? 
> Actually fitting the replacement battery is not hard,
> getting the original type, I believe, is.

Yes.

**vp

-----------------


Sorry for the horrible quality of the pictures, I used my idiotic phone.

Picture 1: Shows the battery pack connected to the external charger.
Note the two Torx screws on the top cover, on either side of the latch.

Picture 2: You can see the PowerSonic lead-acid battery pack with the charger circuit next to it. The two leads are connected to the battery via spade connectors so no soldering.


Edited: 13 Mar 2007, 1:48 a.m.


#45

This is very helpful, thank you!

This is a repair that I could probably manage, given the correct tool and the correct replacement cell.

Since the mystery of the battery (actually, mysterious only to me) has been settled, I wonder if there is any wisdom out there regarding the care of the disk mechanism and drive heads themselves. I have been chagrined to learn that the 9114 (more so than the 9114B) is vulnerable to drive heads sticking to disk media and getting torn out with ejection of the disk. Is this a preventable problem? Is there anyway to diagnose an incipient problem before it occurs? I have asked the prospective seller to inspect this if he can, since I would be deeply mortified to separate this beloved unit from a collection only to irreversibly destroy it the first time I insert a disk! The seller has prudently reminded me that sometimes great care and patience is required to coax these old machines back to full function, and I really don't want to go blundering into that disk drive like a bull in china shop. So if you have any other wisdom or experience to share, I would be grateful. For example, is it possible to clean the drive mechanism and/or prepare the floppies so as to minimize the risk of permanent damage to the heads?

Grateful as always for your patience and kind advice.

Les


#46

 Les Wright wrote:
> I have been chagrined to learn that the 9114 (more so than the
> 9114B) is vulnerable to drive heads sticking to disk media and
> getting torn out with ejection of the disk. Is this a preventable
> problem?

I bought 3 9114 units about 5 years ago (two 9114B and one 9114A)
and they all had bad packs and stuck loading mechanisms.

I know nothing about the 9114 then, but I was lucky and the drives were OK. I had to take apart the drives to lubricate the loading mechanisms and also replace the lead-acid cells on their packs.

The 9114 box also uses Torx screws and since the screws are deeply recessed unless you have a long Torx screwdriver you will have a lot of trouble removing them.

Once the box is open you will see the motherboard on one side and the floppy drive mechanism. Although it looks like a PC floppy mechanism, it is not! So be careful not to damage it.

Tony has posted a detailed explanation on how to take the drive apart to lubricate the parts, but I can't find it now (it could have been about the floppy drive for the Integral PC which uses the same device as the 9114B).

BTW please do not use WD40 on the drive though!

**vp


#47

As far as I know, the Torx screws in 9114 drives and battery packs are size T9. So make a note of that before you go to the tool shop. For some reason I have sizes T8, T9, and T10 near my HP stuff. T6 is/was useful for taking apart (and reassembling!) cell phones.

Have fun,

Dan M.


#48

TX6 is also the size you need to take a HP71B apart.

#49

The 9114A _is_ prone to having dried-up grease on the loading mechanism, and if it's not caught in time, the top head will catch in the disk shutter when you eject the disk and will be ruined.

I'd always dismantle an 'unknown' 9114A (or any other machine that uses a similar drive) and clean off the grease. I wrote an article on how to do this (step-by-step with pictures) in the V26 N1 issue of Datafile (HPPC journal). If you ask the editor nicely, he might send you a copy of said article, I certainly have no objections to it being more widely distributed.

I can talk you through taking the casing, etc, apart if you have problems doing that.


#50

Does the 9114B require any similar precautions?


#51

I don't think the 9114B's drive suffers in the same way. It's a totally different design to the full-height drive used in the 9114A, in fact it's mechanically similar to an Apple Mac 800K drive. Even some of the electronic parts are the same.

I've never had any problems with the eject mechanism of the 9114B sticking, but if anyone's seriously interested, I can take my 9114B apart sometime and do a photoshoot and thus write an article. But I doubt very much if it will appear in Datafile.


#52

That would be interesting. I enjoyed your article in Datafile on the 9114A drive. I have not yet decided whether I dare try maintaining my 9114A drives myself, as I am not very mechanically inclined, but without your article I would not even have considered it.


Possibly Related Threads...
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  Another Prime crash Stefan Dröge (Germany) 2 833 11-06-2013, 01:48 PM
Last Post: Stefan Dröge (Germany)
  HP Prime Crash bluesun08 5 1,171 11-04-2013, 05:16 PM
Last Post: Michael de Estrada
  HPprime CRASH and mysterious clepsydra indicator fabrice48 3 1,167 10-30-2013, 03:17 PM
Last Post: cyrille de Brébisson
  HP PRIME - Crash with "REPLACE" cmd ? dg1969 0 574 10-21-2013, 03:25 PM
Last Post: dg1969
  How to move lexfiles from PC to 71 w/o HP-IL? Joe Horn 9 2,102 10-18-2013, 03:50 PM
Last Post: Christoph Giesselink
  Hand Held Products RS232 to HP-IL aj04062 11 2,096 08-31-2013, 07:12 PM
Last Post: Paul Berger (Canada)
  HP IL over wifi ... (ILPer & go71b) Olivier De Smet 12 2,716 08-20-2013, 05:44 AM
Last Post: Olivier De Smet
  More Slide Rule Stuff... . .... Thomas Chrapkiewicz 1 741 09-25-2012, 03:41 PM
Last Post: Kiyoshi Akima
  Virtual HP41 and Virtual HP-IL Mike (Stgt) 5 1,191 09-17-2012, 01:47 PM
Last Post: Mike (Stgt)
  HP-IL beginners question John Abbott (S. Africa) 4 1,135 05-28-2012, 05:45 PM
Last Post: Geoff Quickfall

Forum Jump: