Restarting Old Amiga's

Zane Healy healyzh at
Mon Jun 8 15:58:18 CDT 2020

> On Jun 8, 2020, at 1:24 PM, Ethan O'Toole <ethan at> wrote:
>> I have the urge to get my Amiga’s back up and running.  I’m still trying to find my main Amiga A3000, but have found my A500 and my A600.  The problem is, I don’t remember the last time I powered these on.  It’s been a long time since I’ve had time.  In the case of the A3000, I think it’s been about 17 years.  My Atari TT030 has been even longer. :-(
> Nice collection!

I was very active in collecting, and on this list at the beginning.  I also have a couple A1200’s that need work, and I used to have a couple A2000’s (those went to Eric Smith probably 15-20 years ago).  There is also a partial A500, unfortunately I think it’s missing the keyboard, IIRC.

> Sooooo now for the bad news.
> On the Amiga A501 trap door memory expansion, there is a battery for the time clock that will leak. It can damage the memory board. Also, the off gassing of it can cause corrosion in the main computer as well.

The memory expansion was purchased new, around ’98.  I just removed it and checked it, and it looks fine.

> the Amiga 600 has surface mount capacitors that will leak and eat the main board. The machine will smell kinda funny, like fish or something. You will want to pull it apart and investigate it. The caps are in the upper left, upper right and middle for the most part. Have one on my bench I've been trying to fix for a while and it's been tough. I advice recapping before powering it on. And the cap job takes some work since it's all surface mount and the solder is funky from the electrolyte corrosion.

Sounds like this belongs in the same category as my two A1200’s, namely needing some serious surface mount work.  I know the one A1200 has an issue with a chip that overheats.  One strange thing about the A600, it’s already half apart, I’m not sure why, as it worked just fine when I got it, and I’ve never gotten around to figuring out how to put it back together.  I’ll give it a smell later today. :-)

> the Amiga 3000 suffers from a battery leak issue as well. Take it apart, clip out the battery on the mainboard. It's under the drives if I recall. Check the damage around the area. Look online for neutralizing it all on this and the A500. There are replacement mainboards that have been produced if you're adventurous and your board is no good anymore from extreme damage. You have to solder everything on and move over parts.
> There are some killer upgrades for the A500 that give it ~40mhz, 8MB of RAM and hard drive via SD or CF cards. These upgrades might run $150-$200, not bad compared to the flash cards that cost $120 for many systems or say, the CF disk only for the Apple II @ $120ish.

I’ve been aware of the A3000 battery issue, I believe that I resolved this on the original in the late 90’s.  Pulling my spare A3000 out of the box, and checking it has been on my todo list for a long time. :-(  My main A3000 has been nicely upgraded, and was even running AmigaOS 3.9, the last time I was using it.  It’s one of two reasons I still have a 10Base-2 network segment (the other is my DECserver).  For a few years, this was one of my main systems.

About 5 years ago, I picked up a Gotek floppy replacement system, with the intention of putting it into the A500.


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