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TU60 TA8E / M8331 maindec and caps-8 questions

Roland Huisman

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Does anyone have of know a bootable RX01/RX02 disk image where the
TU60 is already installed and has the tape tools like MCPIP on it?

And a bit off topic, but is there a tool to read RX01 images under windows
to get some files and make your own disk image?

Regards, Roland
 

anders_bzn

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Jan 27, 2016
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Don't know if PUTR runs in a windows console since it's an DOS program. But you can run it in DOSBox under Linux. It can put files from the filesystem onto a RX01/02 image (an others as well). http://www.dbit.com/putr/
 

MauriceH

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Dordrecht , Netherlands
Roland,
With a real 8" FFD drive I can read and write RX01 files to a floppy disk with indeed PUTR. (Dos-Box)
With PUTR and Mount function I can actually see the files on the disk.

Let me know and I'll can make a fysical RX01 8" FFD disk for you.
RX02 is not possible due to the fact MF MFM issue in 1 track, DOS can not switch in between.

With IMD117 I can read and write Images to the real RX01 disk.

20190526_RX01-Flop-Lezen-PUTR.jpg
 

Roland Huisman

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Hi Anders and Maurice,

Thanks for the info about Putr. I didn't know this worked for PDP8 disks as well...
I was already using IMD to make and write disk images. So I think PUTR will work as well on my 8" drive.

But I was wondering if there are more modern programs which can handle these disk images directly.
Simh works with these images as well, so I expected some modern tools.

I use the RX01 / RX02 emulator on my newly designed RX8E / M8357R RX01/02 controller clone.
In this emulator you can use the disk images from internet directly with an SD card. And it is lightning fast :D

With some help from Doug Ingraham I solved some problems to actually build a RX01 OS/8 disk which supports the TU60.
This weekend I can test the ideas. When that is succeeds I will put the disk image here as well...

Regards, Roland
 

MauriceH

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Dordrecht , Netherlands
Roland,

Well that is Putr can read-Write RX01 / RT11 disks, if it can read PDP8-RX01 ?
Think so it does, If I choose /FOREIGN as a OS in PUTR.
Some thing to try but I don't have PDP8-FFD's.
 

Roland Huisman

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Good news! Jos Dreesen printed a second run of new rubbers for my TU60 drive
and these works like a charm! I will do some extensive data testing later but this looks
very promising. This is very good to reproduce. Good hope for the TU60 drives in the field!

I have two of these drives here but not all PCB's seem to be okay. But with a bit
of board swapping I got al least a working set. Now I can repair the defective boards.

And I'm very happy that my clone controller works well ! :D:D:D

TU60 rubber 1.jpg TU60 rubber 2.jpg TU60 rubber 3.jpg

Here is a little video of running the maindec.


Regards, Roland
 

jdreesen

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Switzerland
Good news! Jos Dreesen printed a second run of new rubbers for my TU60 drive
and these works like a charm! I will do some extensive data testing later but this looks
very promising. This is very good to reproduce. Good hope for the TU60 drives in the field!

I do hope they last , to be honest I have no idea if these are a long-term solution or not.
Then again, it's an easy job to print more..

Jos
 

anders_bzn

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If I remember right, I sent Mattis a rubber seal from some pluming that worked out just fine.
 

Roland Huisman

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Great to see another tape spinning, though it's a bit more modest than the DECtape on RICM's PDP-9 :>)

Yes it is a bit different, I'm quite happy that the computer and tape drive just fit on my desk ;)
There was still an error in one board generating CRC errors. This was caused by a defective 7400 in the TU60. Now fixed.

Here is a close up of the clone controller:
TA8E M8331R Front.jpg

It passes the Static test, Control test and Data test with my first restored drive.

And for anyone interested, here are the schematics of my clone board:
https://github.com/Roland-Huisman/Digital_TA8E_M8331R_74xx_clone

My plan is to reorder the updated controller board and make a new one for myself
to test the modified board. Then I will release the gerbers on GitHub.
I do only need one board, so that makes four boards available for other people here.

And if anyone is interested: I have also 4 bare proto boards left. If you don't mind
placing two wires on the back, then you can have one just for shipping costs.

Regards, Roland
 
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Roland Huisman

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YESSS!! I've got CAPS-8 booting from the TU60! That was quite a bumpy road.

I had some contact with Doug Ingraham about inserting the TU60 driver (CSA.BN)
Inserting the driver wasn't the biggest problem, but saving the new bootstrap was...
Some disks have a message which they show when they boot.
You have to disable that before you can add system devices.

When you want to change your devices first run " SET SYS NO INIT " to disable any activity when booting.
Then " RUN SYS BUILD " to start the system builder.
Type " PRINT " to see what drivers are already in the system. You can load a maximum of 15 drivers.
Make sure that CSA.BN is on your disk and type " LOAD CSA.BN " to load the driver.
Then " INSERT TA8A:CSA0 " making cassette 0 visible in OS8.
Then " INSERT TA8A:CSA1 " making cassette 1 visible in OS8.
Use " UNLOAD devicename " to remove other drivers which you don't need. So you don't exceed the maximum of 15 devices.
Then enter " BOOTSTRAP " This writes the new bootstrap into memory, exits the program and load OS8.
Now it is important that you do not run anything. Just " SAVE SYS BUILD " to save the bootstrap contents from core into BUILD.
At last you can run " SET SYS INIT " if you had any startup programs.

Since I have done this on an RX01 disk image this disk image is on my TA8E M8331 GutHub. So that is already done.
On this disk are also the files to make a CAPS8 cassette.

When booted from this disk run MCPIP to copy the files to tape.


.R MCPIP
*CSA0:</Z
*CSA0:C2BOOT<C2BOOT/B=10000
*CSA0:MONTOR<MONTOR/B=20000
*CSA0:SYSCOP<SYSCOP/B=20000
*CSA0:EDIT<EDIT/B=10000
*CSA0:BASIC<BASIC/B=10000
*CSA0:pALC<PALC/B=20000

To check the contents of the cassette within MCPIP:
*TTY:<CSA0:/L

TU60 caps 8 files copieren 6.jpg

Regards, Roland

And for those who are interested, I have some boards left, see my previous message...
 
Last edited:

DougIngraham

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Rapid City, SD USA
With some help from Doug Ingraham I solved some problems to actually build a RX01 OS/8 disk which supports the TU60.
This weekend I can test the ideas. When that is succeeds I will put the disk image here as well...

Regards, Roland

Glad I could help out. I just found my way here and signed up. Looking forward to seeing how this project turns out.

Doug
 

Roland Huisman

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Glad I could help out. I just found my way here and signed up. Looking forward to seeing how this project turns out.

Hi Doug,

Welcome here :) And again thanks for your help.

I think my TU60 project is done now. I've tried to share all information
to restore these drives and make your own PDP8 controller for it...
I want to do a little YouTube demo on CAPS-8 later when I'm a bit more familiar with CAPS-8.

And I think your book is worth a new topic here in the DEC section as well :D

Regards, Roland
 

DougIngraham

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And I think your book is worth a new topic here in the DEC section as well :D

I plan to do exactly that as soon as I get the sections on the Serial disk handler included. Kyle gave me permission earlier this week to include/use his sources. The book we are talking about is the one I really needed in 1975 when I wrote a handler for PS/8 to use a storage scope as a line printer. I am writing such a book with all the information in one place. From talking to people since I started the project it appears that there is still a need for this. The section Roland used is the chapter I wrote about installing handlers.

Enough off topic-ness. If I want to talk about it I can go start a new thread. See you there!

Doug
 

pbirkel@gmail.com

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If I remember right, I sent Mattis a rubber seal from some pluming that worked out just fine.
Do you recall any more specifics about that? My TU60 rubber has turned into a strange fragile whiteish mass cracked into multiple segments and fallen into the chassis. None is left adherent to the metal wheel. No idea how firm it was originally.

I'm guessing that your plumbing diameters are metric-based and are different than ours here in the USA :-<.
 

pbirkel@gmail.com

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I do hope they last , to be honest I have no idea if these are a long-term solution or not.
Then again, it's an easy job to print more..

Jos
Assuming that they lasted this far (three years now) perhaps I could acquire a set from you? My TU60 rubber has turned into a strange fragile whiteish mass cracked into multiple segments and fallen into the chassis. None is left adherent to the metal wheel. No idea how firm it was originally.

What material did you use to print these replacements? Is the STL available?
 

jdreesen

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326
Location
Switzerland
I do not have a TU60 : other than "it works" i have not received feedback on how well they keep up.
I'll append the .scad file for this and some others rollers I have made.

Material I used is Ninjaflex TPU 3DNF0517505
Print @220 Celsius with 90% infill, using half-speed (30mm/s) and check feed cartridge.

It does not make economical sense to ship these from Europe to the US.

BR Jos
 

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