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The Tale of Two PC's


Veteran Member
Jun 3, 2009
Peru, New York
A few years ago times were really rough in my family, it is what is known in my circles as the 9/11 moment. Prior to that, I had an IBM 5150, 5160, and 5170. Each system was a very nice setup. Unfortunately I had to sell all of it to help ends meet.

Last year things started turning around and now that we're back on our feet, I've had an opportunity to start rebuilding the collection but with a much smaller living space can't have all the vintage goodies I want, so settle for one. I'd like an original PC with an expansion unit.

In May picked up a 5150 out of Canada which cosmetically was in good shape; stock Model B, with just the disk controller and mono-print card, 256 on the motherboard. Picked up a NOS CGA card with a bad tantalum cap but did get it going.

The search for the ever elusive 5161 was more of a challenge but more fun. One did stumble on eBay but in real bad cosmetic shape. It did have the IBM connector cable and a receiver card but no extender. I snagged it. Two hard disks, one is "stuck" and the other one is a screecher; sounds like a 747. Of course without an extender it was just another box waiting. Of course another miracle happened an extender card showed up by itself by part number on eBay later, snagged that, and so now have a "complete" but cosmetically beat up 5150 and 5160.

However this past weekend in what I can only the score of a lifetime off of craigslist thanks to PeterLI, a 5150, 5152, 5153, and the 5161. All in pristine cosmetic shape, although the system unit isn't powering up, I will troubleshoot it soon.

I teach an A+ course at work, and will show these young people something from where it began...

And this is The Tale of two PC's...