DECmate I floppies (was Re: VT100 keyboard (source?))

Ethan Dicks ethan.dicks at
Wed Aug 19 17:10:50 CDT 2015

On Wed, Aug 19, 2015 at 5:48 PM, Brent Hilpert <hilpert at> wrote:
> Thanks, that was a question I had been intending to ask, but to confirm:
> If one obtained (as appropriate) bare RX01/2 floppy drive(s), it would
> just be a matter of power supply for the floppies, and passive cabling
> to interface the drives to the CPU/display?


There's a board that goes under the wooden "top" that has a DB25 on
one side, a Berg 40 on the other, and some wires and ferrite beads in
between.  It should be the identical board that's in the RX01
enclosure for the MINC-11 and/or WT78.  The pinouts should be the same
even if those use a different part number for the board.

> I actually have the DB25-to-DC37 cable that goes between the disk unit and the DC37 connector on the CPU/display unit.

Right.  Well documented and easy enough to make, but good you have
one.  What I need to make (since I've never seen one) is the
DC37-dual-DB25 cable to hang all the drives off of the DECmate I.
100% passive and just a few dozen solder joints.

> If we move this along we may be asking for system software in the future,
> I haven't looked at what may be readily available (i.e. bitsavers) as yet.

I think mine came with WPS-8, but it should run OS-278.  You just need
to find a way to write RX02 floppies.  I need to come up with a
semi-portable PDP-11 rig with RX02s and 256K of RAM so I can cut
floppies with vtserver (and probably some RL01 and RL02s while I'm at


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