Cleaning and recapping the Micropower 2000 part 1

Over a year ago I bought a strange Dual floppy drive.
The drive is called Micropower 2000 and was build by “Analog Digital”.
On the internet I couldn’t find a lot info, I only found some info on the website of Richard Lagendijk <Here> .

He also had a hard time getting more info on the drive.
The difference between our drives are the markings on the front of the drive.
First I thought it could be a prototype of the MSD SD2 As the drives have a lot in common.
To test I programmed 2 eprom’s with the firmware of the MSD and placed them in the drive, and it still functioned.

To get some more info about the drive I created a thread on forum64 <Here> to see if someone else had more info about the drive, but till today there is no reply.
One thing I know now is that the drive can’t be a prototype as the MSD SD2 was introduced in 1983 and my Micropower 2000 is produced in 1984.
So I think it’s a clone.

On use the drive is responding and loading most floppies, but has some issues while formatting and loading of long files.
As the Micropower 2000 uses the same drive units I searched the web and ended on the page of Ray Carlsen <Here> and found that the drive units have capacitors that will leak over time.
After disassembling the drive I could clearly see some corrosion on both drive units. 

I ordered a new set of capacitors to replace them, and will start replacing them soon.
Other things that needs to be done is:

  • a good clean 
  • replacing the feet (only one of four left on the unit)
  • Add missing screw
  • Optional replace power supply
  • Dump original eprom’s for investigation



For sale

I’m saving to buy a new digital oscilloscoop, so I decided to sell so stuff that I don’t use anymore.
So last weekend I put my Blizzard 1220/4 and 2 old (to big for my desk) oscilloscopes for sale.

The Blizzard was one of two cards that came with my A1200, and I never use it as the other card is a GVP 68030 at 40 MHz and contains 16 Mb fast memory.

So if you are interested in a 68020 running at 28MHz and 4Mb fast memory expansion card for the A1200 go to Amibay SOLD


XCPLA drop in replacement for the C64 PLA

Last meeting of the Dutch Commodore Club (near Utrecht) we run out of PLA chips.
Searching the web I came across the website called hackup that used an existing opensource design to create a drop in replacement.

So I decided that I should build some, check them and use them to fix some C64 at the club (I normally can be found next to the repair corner, helping repairing).

This version of XCPLA is for the C64, but with other HDL code it should also work in other systems.

This weekend it will be Sinclair take over, so I will bring my zx81 to try to fix them.


A little update

Last couple of months I’m very busy with all kinds of little projects.

Some of the JoySwap boards that are ready
ZX81 with broken ULA

I’m looking through my stuff, collected over the last 20 years, My son is getting older and needs more space so I need to move my computers and other equipment to another room.

I also received a broken ZX81 (dead ULA and broken keyboard membrane), I already got another main board to check if it has a working ULA.

Another thing I received is a broken 1551, I think the TIA (6525) in the drive is broken, as this chip is rare, I need to find another way to replace it (CPLD ?).

I created about 15 pieces of the JoySwap to be sold, but currently I’m still writing a little installation manual.

I ordered some PI1541 boards and currently I’m waiting for the parts, the PI1541 looks very promising.

Joyswap release version

Joyswap rev 2.0

Last night I finished building the release version of joyswap.
This version will also swap the mouse and paddles.

Last week I received 10 pieces of my revision 2 Joyswap PCB’s.
I started to build them all, but soon found out I only had 2 40 pin sockets, so I currently only finished 2 of them.
This revision also swaps the control lines of the 4066 chip that controls the mouse and paddles.
So now it will not only swap the (digital) joysticks but also the paddles and mouse from port.
When build in, pressing the restore key for about 3 seconds will swap the ports.

Joyswap rev 2.0

These ports will be reset to their normal position when a reset of the C64 is detected.
holding the restore key for 5 seconds will swap the kernal (if kernal option is used) and resets the C64.
holding it for more than 10 seconds, the kernal state is stored in the eeprom of the attiny for next power up.

more info here .

Prototype “JoySwap” working

last night I finished the prototype of “JoySwap”.

JoySwap prototype

JoySwap is a internal joystick switch that swaps the joystick ports at a (3 sec.) press on the restore button.
Next to the swapping of the joystick ports it can also switch between two kernal roms and store the selected rom for next power up.

you can read the complete story here