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Your BEST deal...

Thomas Hillebrandt

Experienced Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2003
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95
Location
Copenhagen, Denmark
Yo man, wazzUP?!!!? (What kinda language is that, anyway?? :roll: )

I was just wondering...What deals have you made, acquiring "new" members for your collections, that you would deem really good deals? I don't necesarrily then deal that got you the Apple I, Commodore 65 or ENIAC, it can be any old machine. It could easily be a deal where the starting price was hiiigh, and you managed to get it cheap after all.

To start things off, here are the fabled tales of how I got my Ericsson Portable, and my Epson PX-8 and Olivetti M-10.

I stumbled on a big, ugly, wine-red nylon-bag at a fleamarket a few years back. Upon further investigation, the bag revealed itself to contain a very nice condition Ericsson Portable PC, which an extra, external 5.25" floppy-drive and an extra roll of thermal paper for the build-in printer. I asked the price, and was met by dumb-founded faces. They didn't know! It turned out the guy who owned that particular stand at the fleamarket wasn't there at the moment. So, I proceeded to make them an offer of 100 dkr. (roughly $15). They declined, saying they wanted to find out what "he" wanted for it. So they called him on the cell...They then came back with the price 600 dkr. (roughly $85). Denied!!! I never pay that much for old machinery, unless it's something REALLY special (and I haven't found any of that yet). So I started haggling. They weren't interested in that, of course, since "he" wasn't there, so I asked when he WOULD be there. Turned out he'd be there soon, so I waited. 'Bout half an hour later, he showed up, and I recommenced my haggling-routines. "I'll give ya a hundred for it!" "Weeeell, I want 600!" "Oh, but it's an old piece of junk.." "Oh, but it's very nice, and I'm selling it for a friend!" (they're always selling it for a friend, when they don't want to sell it cheap). This went on for some time. I let him know that I could not possibly pay him more than 112,50 dkr, because that was all I had on me (which it was)...I ended up getting it for the 100,-...500 off...Don't mind if I do :D

Much later, I responded to an ad in the national want-ads paper. The ad had been for "an Olivetti M10: dkr. 100,- and an Esselte: dkr. 500,-". I responded only to the M10, because I figured maybe I could haggle that a little. I figured I could also haggle the other, but didn't think I could get it low enough, so I didn't concern myself about that (didn't even investigate what it was, since I didn't want to be sad I couldn't get it).
They guy sounded like a dimwhit, but he was reasonable. Over the phone, I expressed my interest in the M10, and denied any interest in the Esselte. I suggested that the price of the M10 be halved, and he wasn't refusing. So I went there (after him telling me repeatedly that it was on that-and-that streed, JUST across from City Hall, and he WAS HOME!!!), and knocked at the door. I was shocked at the sight that greeted me: And oldish man, probably somewhere in his sixties, maybe only late fifties. Gray hair, balding on the top, and wildly uncombed and long in the back and sides. Dressed like your stereotypical excentric school-teacher, only worse, and eyes crossed worse than Marty Feldman. Anyway, he welcomed me, and had me follow him to the top floor (it was a 4-story building with only narrow, winding stairs, so it was quite a feat).
Up here was a science lab in spe. He pulled out a very nice looking Olivetti M-10 (which he persisted to call Oviletti), in it's original leather casing. Niiice...I had two 50's in my pocket, preparing to pay him, either full or half price, what-ever we'd agree on.
It didn't take long, before he INSISTED that I also take a look at the Esselte (which he persisted to call Elselte, and which turned out to be an Epson). It too was nice, with the keyboard-cover, but nothing else - no PSU. I glanced at it and said "that's nice, but I can't afford that". This, appareantly, made his brain short-circuit, because he then put both the Epson and the Olivetti in my hands, and said I could have them both, no charge.
So I walked away, with both machines, and all my money... Now, that's the kind of discount I like!!!

Whew...Well, hope I'm not using all your server-space with my long texts here, Erik :p ...

Those were my short little descrete stories...Let's have yours...
 

Terry Yager

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Saginaw, MI, USA 48601
I'd kill for a PX-8! (Not you, of course, but a stranger? Sure..)
Actually, I thought I got a pretty good deal just the other day on a HX-20. $20.00US, buy it now on eBay. That's about half what they usually go for. Naturally, the next day I saw a PX-8, but too late, I've already blew my computer budget for this month. (The PX-8 went for $31.00 + 15.00 shipping).

--T
 

Terry Yager

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Thomas Hillebrandt said:
Terry Yager said:
I'd kill for a PX-8! (Not you, of course, but a stranger? Sure..)

So, would this be a bad time to tell you that I've also got a PX-4, which I got for just dkr. 60,- (roughly $8 )??? :wink:

Kewl. Actually, I'm very happy for you. I'm always happy to see the classics preserved, even if I can't personaly rescue them. Congratulations on your new aquisition.

--T
 

PS1

Member
Joined
Mar 18, 2004
Messages
40
Location
Huddersfield UK
Goupil Golf

Goupil Golf

golf_lcd.jpg



got this for next to nothing its a french machine from what i gather there where not many made.

omly problem is its missing its rom chip.
 

Thomas Hillebrandt

Experienced Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2003
Messages
95
Location
Copenhagen, Denmark
Re: Goupil Golf

Re: Goupil Golf

PS1 said:
only problem is its missing its rom chip.

D'OH!!!

That's pretty much the worst thing to be missing, because that often is the single most unique thing about a machine...

...But what is it?? IBM-clone, or something "fun"?
 

carlsson

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Messages
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Location
Västerås, Sweden
Apart from getting a few common machines for free (Macintosh LC475, random 486/Pentium PCs), I believe buying a second hand Amiga 1200 with hard drive and 1084 monitor for 1000 (US$140) SEK in 1998ish was quite a good deal, although nowhere a bargain.

As I wrote in another forum, I visited my local flea market yesterday, but didn't get anything as most of the stuff was recent PC hardware, some slightly older laptops and a first generation Gameboy. If I had been shopping around for any ATX generation motherboard, I might have made a good deal, but I never asked how much they wanted. Maybe I will be more lucky some other day. It is only 2 km away from where I live, so it is even bicycle distance if not going to buy any computers.
 

agrajag

Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2004
Messages
11
Location
Australia
Your BEST deal...

My best deal was a guy that advertised an Amiga 500 system in the local paper, US$70 it came with CD rom, Hard drive and monitor.

It was a good deal, I called up and this 90 year old man answered and said "The only thing is that you have to take everything"
I thought "I'm sure I would".

Anyway I got there and he had a HUGE load to give me:
C64, C128, 2 Commodore Monitors, 900 c64 disks, 6 different C64 Action replay type carts, Heaps of programming books, this 90 year old was a real hacker. Not to mention the Amiga lot all for $us70.

He even called me back a month later to say he found some more stuff that I could have for free.

Cheers,
Agrajag
 

curtis

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Apr 30, 2003
Messages
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Amarillo, TX
Guess my 2 best deals were the CC-40+ I picked up at a garage sale for $5.00.

My other "best" deal was picking up a 2.5 ProcTech Sol 20's for $50. I say 2.5 because while 2 were complete, the third was essentially a shell with only a motherboard along with the case. Also included a SWTPC PR-40 printer with it. Seller was closing out a photography business and had them stuck in the very back of some stuff. Had to go dumpster diving for the manuals, but managed to find the full set!

And before anyone asks, I've already sold 1.5 of the Sol's.

Curtis
 

curtis

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Terry Yager said:
I'd kill for a PX-8! (Not you, of course, but a stranger? Sure..)
Actually, I thought I got a pretty good deal just the other day on a HX-20. $20.00US, buy it now on eBay. That's about half what they usually go for. Naturally, the next day I saw a PX-8, but too late, I've already blew my computer budget for this month. (The PX-8 went for $31.00 + 15.00 shipping).

--T

I'm the guy that picked up that PX-8! Haven't had a chance to check it out yet. Couple of projects ahead in line! :D

I'll let you know how it checks out.

Curtis
 

Terry Yager

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curtis said:
I'm the guy that picked up that PX-8! Haven't had a chance to check it out yet. Couple of projects ahead in line! :D

I'll let you know how it checks out.

Curtis

Oh, well congratulations! (And sorry if the PX-8 arrives in a slightly water-logged condition, I drooled over it a whole lot). Well, enjoy your new toy. Have you ever used CP/M before? Let us know if ya need any pointers.

--T
 

ahm

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New Jersey
Some years ago, I was on a contract to help move about 30 employees and an entire server room from one building to another. About a week before moving day, I guess people realized the move was going to happen soon and they started cleaning out their offices. That day, as I walked down the hall, I noticed someone had put a Sun Sparcstation 2 out in the hall and I stopped to have a look. It appeared to be in good shape, and I asked the guy across the hall if he was throwing it out. "Yeah" he said. "It doesn't have any memory or a hard drive". "That's okay" I said, as I picked up the pizza box and started to walk away. Before I could get too far, someone yelled "Wait!". Thinking I was busted, I turned around slowly, only to see the guy I'd just talked to, standing there holding two silver static bags. "Don't you want the memory and the hard drive?". (BTW, the machine ran fine. I had Linux on it for a long time until just before I sold it, when I loaded OpenBSD on it).
 

curtis

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Terry Yager said:
Oh, well congratulations! (And sorry if the PX-8 arrives in a slightly water-logged condition, I drooled over it a whole lot). Well, enjoy your new toy. Have you ever used CP/M before? Let us know if ya need any pointers.

--T

Have I ever used CP/M before? Hmm, let me think... I've got an Osborne O01, Exec, Vixen, Kaypro II, 2X, 10, 4X, NEC PC-8300 and 8401, and a Seequa Chameleon.

5-6 versions of Wordstar. SuperCalc, dBase II for CP/M, Turbo Pascal for CP/M.

I might be able to muddle my way through!!! :lol:

Curtis

p.s. Not much water damage. Guess your screen soaked up most of it.
 

ahm

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Not exactly my BEST deal, but close.

Not exactly my BEST deal, but close.

There used to be a good thrift shop nearby that I would visit about once a week, looking for actual toys (slot car sets) as well as games for my old Nintendo NES. It got to be a pretty regular thing, so the guy who worked there eventually got to recognize me, we'd chat and sometimes he'd point out stuff I might have missed. One day, he asks if I've seen "the new video game" that just came in, and pushes what looks like a laptop across the counter. I take a look at it and sure enough, it's an HP OmniBook 4000. I guess he thought it was one of those V-Tech kid's laptop game thingeys. There's no power supply but the battery still had enough juice that I can see it's trying to boot. And hello, what's this? There's still a PCMCIA card in one of the slots. "Well, I dunno... It looks pretty beat up, and I really don't need it. But, how much?" I ask. "Ten bucks". I got it home and managed to rig up some power for it. (And wouldn't you know it? Almost every other HP laptop I've ever seen takes 12VDC. Not this one, no sir. It wants 21VDC, yes, that's twenty-one volts DC).

And I'm sure everyone here already knows this, but I feel I have to say it: Before you give away old hardware, remember to scrub the hard drive! This laptop had a complete system on it, including someone's financial data! Naturally, I wiped the hard drive and installed a new system, but I was amazed that anyone would stuff out the door like that. Anyway, I found the correct power supply on eBay for another ten bucks, and I use the laptop to play the old classic games like Doom and Commander Keen, and yes, even Sceptre.
 

Thomas Hillebrandt

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Copenhagen, Denmark
Re: Not exactly my BEST deal, but close.

Re: Not exactly my BEST deal, but close.

ahm said:
And I'm sure everyone here already knows this, but I feel I have to say it: Before you give away old hardware, remember to scrub the hard drive! This laptop had a complete system on it, including someone's financial data!

THAT reminds me of the first Commodore PC30-III that I got my filthy paws on. Stood in "Ye Olde Junk-Shoppe" (my name for it, not theirs), price-tagged at dkr. 50,- (which is roughly $6-7), which was fair enough. Got it home, hooked it up: The machine apparently used to belong to a dentist, and all his (or her) clients were still in a database on the HD. Social Security numbers, adresses, dental conditions...the works!

Needless to say, it's all wiped now!
 

curtis

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Terry Yager said:
Oh, well congratulations! (And sorry if the PX-8 arrives in a slightly water-logged condition, I drooled over it a whole lot). Well, enjoy your new toy. Have you ever used CP/M before? Let us know if ya need any pointers.

--T

To quote Dr. Leonard "Bones "McCoy, It's dead Terry!

Plugged in the little bugger last night and let it charge. Turned it on and nada, zip, nothing! A little screen flicker and that was it.

Will have to perform surgery the see if it's repairable.

Curtis
 

Terry Yager

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curtis said:
Terry Yager said:
Oh, well congratulations! (And sorry if the PX-8 arrives in a slightly water-logged condition, I drooled over it a whole lot). Well, enjoy your new toy. Have you ever used CP/M before? Let us know if ya need any pointers.

--T

To quote Dr. Leonard "Bones "McCoy, It's dead Terry!

Plugged in the little bugger last night and let it charge. Turned it on and nada, zip, nothing! A little screen flicker and that was it.

Will have to perform surgery the see if it's repairable.

Curtis

If it's like the HX-20, it won't run from the charger alone, the battery has to have at least some charge in it. If the battery is not taking a charge, you may have to "zap" it. When ni-cad batteries get old, the chemicals inside the cells begins to crystalize, and the crystals tend to short out the cell. What I usually do is to check each cell with a voltmeter (after it's been on the charger for sufficient time). Any cells that dont read at least 1.2v. are suspect. Mark the cels that are shorted, and then atach a pair of wires across the terminals of the dead cell (not the whole battery pack--just the individual cell). Now carry the whole works out to your car, and connect the wires to your (12v.) car battery, just for an instant making not of proper polarity. Do the same for each dead cell. Now you should be able to charce it normally. If that trick don't work, scrap the battery pack and head down to RadioShack and grab some new ni-cads, and rebuild your battery pack, it's cheaper than buying the actual pack, which is BTW, still available on the net (I saved $11.00 + shipping on mine by rebuilding it myself). I zapped the battery in my HX-10, and it took a full charge after that, (4.8v.) but I didn't think it lasted as long as it should. Epson claims 50 hours/charge, but I was only getting a few hours, so I bought new cells. Well, guess what? The brand new ni-cads last the same ammount of time as the old ones did. Anyways, how it works is that when you zap a 1.2v. cell with a 12v. hi-amperage charge (for just a sec.) it causes a miniture explosion inside the cell, which "blows away" the crystals that are shorting the cell out, just like blowing a fuse, then the short becomes an open again, and the bat will usually take a charge after that. If ya decide to try this trick, be very careful, you could hurt yourself. YMMV...
Of course, if you insist on keeping it "as new", you can find batteries for it here: http://shop.store.yahoo.com/nationalcomputer/c10.html (it takes the same battery that my HX-20 does, AFAIK).

--T
 

Terry Yager

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curtis,

I was just going thru my HX-20 TechRef and I see that it has a "voltage detect" circuit that shuts down the power to (most of) the machine when battery voltage drops to 4.5 volts (I have to believe that the PX-8 has similar protection). Since a fully-charged battery pack only outputs 4.8 volts, that doesn't leave a whole lot of wiggle-room. Of course, it is the nature of ni-cad batteries to hold nearly a full charge for a long time, then lose thier charge rapidly, almost at once, unlike other types of batteries which lose thier charge gradually over the length of the discharge cycle. For that reason, the voltage detection probably makes sense because when the voltage starts to drop, it isn't long before the battery is stone-cold dead, and they wanted to retain some power to the memory so it's contents are not lost every time the battery runs down. (It requires +3 volts to keep the memory alive).

--T
 

curtis

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Nope, it's dead. I have a good PX-8 and checked the adapter with it. Ditto battery.

Then in the finest troubleshooting tradition, I swapped out each and every socketed chip one at a time. No change.

Something on the board that isn't obvious is toast.

So... if anyone is interested in a DOA PX-8 with 3 binders of documentation and Portable Wordstar and Calc, BASIC, and Utility ROM's, and A/C adapter, drop me a line with an offer!

That or if someone has a nasty looking, but functional, PX-8 they'd be willing to sell for a reasonable price, contact me.

Curtis
 
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