Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

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Marakatti
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Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby Marakatti » Sat Mar 05, 2016 5:38 pm

Finally booted my two Falcons after a couple of years and only to find out that my old birds are suffering :(

Falcon 1 is a stock machine with 14Mb FalconWings board. It bombed on boot with 8 bombs. FalconWings shows some slight corrosion which is probably enough to send it to RAM heaven. Machine worked with original 4MB ram board but wasn't very stable.

Falcon 2 is a CT2b machine and while it runs as good as they usually have done the PSU doesn't look too good. The yellow big thing (whatever it is) with a text High Voltage shows bad leaking as does the PSU of Falcon 1.

Is there any plug and play replacement of 14Mb RAM boards and modern PSU's available for Falcon or am i a one step closer to the world of emulation... ?

Thanks,
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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby bugs » Sat Mar 05, 2016 6:02 pm

There is a falcon magnum memory board on ebay.de

http://www.ebay.de/itm/Atari-Magnum-Fas ... Swh-1W2azl

exxos sells new psu's

http://www.exxoshost.co.uk/atari/last/store.htm
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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby frank.lukas » Sat Mar 05, 2016 6:06 pm

Ask Lynxman for the Ram Boards ...
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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby SoundDoctor » Sat Mar 05, 2016 7:58 pm

frank.lukas wrote:Ask Lynxman for the Ram Boards ...


I second this suggestion. Lynxman is a great option. Very nice boards indeed and a great standard of work. I have one of his board in one of my Falcons and he upgraded my TT 2mb ST board to 8mb recently. He did a perfect job.
TT030 4mb/16mb/1Gb, Coco. Falcon 030 Stock 14mb (Lynxman), 1Gb CF. Falcon 030 Stock 14mb (Atari) 170mb IDE. Mega 1 (mash up labelled Mega 4) 4mb (Frontier XtraRam w/ SIPPs) ICD ADSpeed ST OverScan. Mega 4 (currently dead), Mega 2, 520 STe (SIPPs), 520 STFM.

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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby Marakatti » Sun Mar 06, 2016 10:06 am

Thanks :) I sent pm to Lynxman.

I don't see any Falcon PSU available on Exxos' site. Just some repair kit which doesn't include the piece which seems bad on my both PSU's. I guess the STe ones doesn't work on Falcon? I have absolutely zero knowledge to electronics.
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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby exxos » Sun Mar 06, 2016 10:42 am

Marakatti wrote:I don't see any Falcon PSU available on Exxos' site. Just some repair kit which doesn't include the piece which seems bad on my both PSU's. I guess the STe ones doesn't work on Falcon? I have absolutely zero knowledge to electronics.


My PSU can fit in the falcon, just you need a longer cable to the motherboard as the connector on the PSU is set for the ST (at the front) not the side of the PCB like on the Falcon.

What part failed ? The main switcher ? The kits I sell are kits to update the capacitors as the PSU gets spiky and could kill a falcon if left with the original caps. Possible if the PSU is running badly it could self-destruct. Also the stock falcon PSU isn't to great if running any more hardware internally. I did some heat tests on the main switcher in another threat, that sucker gets HOT aka prone to fail.
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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby Marakatti » Sun Mar 06, 2016 2:06 pm

Basically my PSU looks like this. It works but looks like better not to use it anymore.
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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby dml » Sun Mar 06, 2016 2:14 pm

Hi,

That's a transformer with resin on it. It's not actually leaking - there's nothing inside to leak (just copper windings + resin).

The bits which age are the black and brown cylinders - the electrolytic caps. These can leak if damaged, but will more likely dry out and the values drift off.

The yellow stuff on the other component leads is more resin or flux - not leakage.

So visually it looks ok to me. Looks like mine. Can't tell about actual performance without putting a scope on it...

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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby Marakatti » Sun Mar 06, 2016 2:24 pm

Really? Scared hell out of me when I saw it. I thought it looks like it's going to explode to the nearest star :D But then again i know nothing about electric stuff.
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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby frank.lukas » Sun Mar 06, 2016 2:37 pm

The Transformer is soaked in synthetic resin, it is OK. I think there is nothing wrong with the PowerSupply ...
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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby SoundDoctor » Sun Mar 06, 2016 3:14 pm

Marakatti wrote:Really? Scared hell out of me when I saw it. I thought it looks like it's going to explode to the nearest star :D But then again i know nothing about electric stuff.


If you really know nothing about electric stuff please don't poke about in a PSU - there are voltages in there that can kill you, or worse, kill your Falcon! ;-)

Where were they stored for the 'couple of years'? Inside a heated environment or in unheated storage?

As a general thing to do with any really old electronics that have been off and stored for years - take a soft paint brush and a vacuum cleaner hose and get all of the dust out if it, gently brush it out and suck it away with the vacuum as you go.

Having said that, your PSU doesn't look too bad at all. Is there a lot of crap on the motherboard?

Get some Isopropyl alcohol and soft non lint cloth and gently clean any areas where it looks like there is corrosion (more likely flux residue). If there are areas around ICs and component pins where it looks really crusty use a tooth brush and IsoP to clean away the corrosion or flux residue. After a few days try to power on again a see if things are a bit more stable.

Dry dust is mainly composed of human skin and tiny particles of plant based fabric and other common materials. Now, general dust when dry is not really a big problem. If the previous owner was a smoker you have carbon and tar and all sorts of more problematic contaminants, maybe even ash, in there. If you live near the coast where it can be humid you may also have salt in there. Dust can hold moisture especially if there is a bit of sodium chloride floating about.
If it is even slightly damp in there due to temperature fluctuations or dew then you have issues. Damp dust can short more or less everything.

If I pick up an old old machine I often do a few things before powering up. 1. Brush / suck / blow the dust out. 2. Clean contacts and exposed IC pins with IsoP. 3. Reseat all cables. 4. Use a hairdryer to warm it up / dry it out, just in case. And in the case of old analogue audio power amps with big caps, use a variac to tickle the caps with a very low voltage for a while (couple of days) before gradually bringing them up to operating voltage.

You'd be surprised how well rusty old crap responds to this velvet glove treatment, not that I'm saying your falcons are rusty old crap ;-)

I didn't do any of this recently with one of my falcons that had been sitting powered off in my study (heated and dry) for 2 years and had a black screen and ticking PSU. After a lot of head scratching and posts on the forum I discovered a tiny flake of metal plating stuck between a couple of IC pins. It must have come off one of the crappy plated screws that had been taken out and put back in one too many times.
TT030 4mb/16mb/1Gb, Coco. Falcon 030 Stock 14mb (Lynxman), 1Gb CF. Falcon 030 Stock 14mb (Atari) 170mb IDE. Mega 1 (mash up labelled Mega 4) 4mb (Frontier XtraRam w/ SIPPs) ICD ADSpeed ST OverScan. Mega 4 (currently dead), Mega 2, 520 STe (SIPPs), 520 STFM.

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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby exxos » Sun Mar 06, 2016 4:19 pm

Marakatti wrote:Basically my PSU looks like this. It works but looks like better not to use it anymore.


As others have pointed out, most transformers look that way, its just how they are thrown together at manufacture.

I am in the UK, you could always send me your PSU for a shape-down if needs be.
4MB STFM 1.44 FD- VELOCE+ 020 STE - Falcon 030 CT60 - Atari 2600 - Atari 7800 - Gigafile - SD Floppy Emulator - PeST - various clutter

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http://www.exxoshost.co.uk/atari/last/storenew/ - All my hardware mods for sale - Please help support by making a purchase.
http://ataristeven.exxoshost.co.uk/Steem.htm Latest Steem Emulator

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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby Marakatti » Sun Mar 06, 2016 4:56 pm

SoundDoctor wrote:
Marakatti wrote:Really? Scared hell out of me when I saw it. I thought it looks like it's going to explode to the nearest star :D But then again i know nothing about electric stuff.


If you really know nothing about electric stuff please don't poke about in a PSU - there are voltages in there that can kill you, or worse, kill your Falcon! ;-)

I know that much ;)

Where were they stored for the 'couple of years'? Inside a heated environment or in unheated storage?

They are in a heated envinroment with my other computer stuff. Would never put them to cold storage

As a general thing to do with any really old electronics that have been off and stored for years - take a soft paint brush and a vacuum cleaner hose and get all of the dust out if it, gently brush it out and suck it away with the vacuum as you go.

Having said that, your PSU doesn't look too bad at all. Is there a lot of crap on the motherboard?

No, not that much crap. And yes I did blow a decent cloud of dust out of them before powering up. But i need to do better cleaning. Thanks for your tips :)

Usually i've taken better care of my collection but kids have taken my time in recent years so only had time to keep couple of ST's in clean shape.

exxos wrote:As others have pointed out, most transformers look that way, its just how they are thrown together at manufacture.

I am in the UK, you could always send me your PSU for a shape-down if needs be.

I'm relieved about that, thanks. Once i can source a new ram-board for my Falcon i would like to send the PSU's for an upgrade. Don't want to lose my precious Falcons.
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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby Marakatti » Mon Mar 21, 2016 11:23 am

Got my Ram board from Lynxman. Very fast delivery and the quality is awesome!
IDE adapter with CF card is formatted, old SCSI drive still working great, PARCP-USB is on it's way and will soon order PSU upgrade kits from Exxos (found someone from work who is fixing old C64's. He promised to do the PSU upgrade for me)

My Falcon is running great again. Many thanks everyone for the help. You really made my day :) :thumbs:
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Re: Falcon replacement PSU's and RAM boards?

Postby Lynxman » Mon Mar 21, 2016 6:34 pm

Marakatti wrote:Got my Ram board from Lynxman. Very fast delivery and the quality is awesome!


Thank you!


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