IBM 5100 Restoration in progress

Santo Nucifora santo.nucifora at
Tue Mar 17 07:45:49 CDT 2015

Update:  Unfortunately, I think I'm at a dead end.  After cleaning
everything up, I am still at the "A" in the "Bring Up" program that isn't
very far but it's better than garbage.  I removed both memory cards and get
garbage so the memory cards might be working (I have two and tried both
individually).  I think my problem is in the "Basic I/O" card as indicated
in the Maintenance manual.  I am also not able to get into the Diagnostics
screen because it must be failing too early.  Either that or my keyboard
isn't working.  It's hard to tell.

I'd be happy to try to replace some of the logic chips but IBM uses their
own numbering scheme.  Does anyone know of a way to read them?  I assume
they are normal logic chips but with IBM numbering in most cases?

Ali, thanks for the link.  I did look over that document a while ago but
the Maintenance manual is also very thorough in regards to the 5106 tape
drive both internally and as an external unit.  The rollers look great and
hard in both the internal and external unit but I obviously can't test out
either at this point.

Anyway,  I did clean it up and took some more pictures to document where
the cards go.  Thanks to Dave Dunfield's IBM 5100 site, I was able to
figure it out.  Much appreciated Dave!  I have also taken pictures of my
cards and where they go.

You can find new pictures here:

On Sun, Mar 15, 2015 at 3:12 PM, Ali <cctalk at> wrote:

> > Yes, it is an external tape drive that is very similar to the internal
> > drive.  I'm guessing it was touted as doubling the "mass storage" for
> > the
> > 5100 but it was probably used for backups. Unfortunately, I don't have
> > any tapes or documentation and thee is supposed to be a supplemental
> > tape that had the utility to make backup tapes.
> That is very cool. As far as tapes are concerned any std. DC300 or DC600
> tape should work. However, make sure to check for gooified insides on both
> tape drive mechanisms. I did some googlefu and found the following which
> may help you:
> Not much but a starting point.
> >
> > I'll take some more pics when I clean it up.  I've only ever seen a
> > picture of the front online.
> That would be great. Even if you can't get it up and running at least we
> would have some records for posterity.
> Congrats on your find! Those machines are rare and when they come up they
> always sell for way more than I am ready to spend!
> -Ali

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