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ScuzzBlog: Diaries October 2017

Entry 11th October 2017: Post: 1

Ateo Concepts - Part 2 [ Elephant Graveyard ]
OK I know I said wouldn't be having a go at the Ateo Concepts tower
any time soon. Well, as ever I lied and have spent most of the
day stripping the unit down and having a good nose around. I also
recorded a video of the whole thing and plan on uploading this
when I have edited the content.

Remember this little mess. Well it was time
to go in and see what was behind all this

First thing I did was hook the PicassoIV up to
a large Mitsubishi monitor so I could see what
I was doing. Obvious problem was the picture was
doing some crazy ape things. Split images.

The drives were spinning but not booting and as
I suspected the main drive at the very top of the
computer wasn't doing a thing. There are three
drives on the machine.

I used the HDInstall floppy from v3.0 and booted
in to the computer. Second thing I noticed was
there was no additional RAM

Could be a problem with the Catweasel Z-II controller
could be a bigger problem with the processor.

The two lower IDE drives were showing up in the HDToolbox
though neither would boot into the system.

SysInfo picked up three Zorro cards but flipped
out when I did a speed check on the system

SysInfo also only picked up the 2MB Chip RAM

Fortunately I was getting a boot screen now
I discovered a disconnected ribbon to the floppy
I can now get into the system off the WB disk

Another surprise was the 3.0 ROM

The first drive calls itself Workbench and bootable
and yet is called something else on the screen
Quite a massive drive with a small boot partition
I will check the file structure and see if I can
get it to boot into the system.

The second drive is a pretty standard drive
Sadly no third drive which is where I think
the actual Workbench is

It is this top removable drive that is broken

The system does try to boot but halts at this
screen. Not always though. It also states that
RAM is full and unable to connect to the Catweasel

The tower has a cool slide tray that lets you
withdraw the whole of the motherboard

Which gives you access to all the cards

It was going to be a case of simply removing
all the cards from the main motherboard

I stripped down to the main 040 processor board
and noted this strange mod to the top of the
board. I am not at all sure the processor board
is working properly

It is possible it has been adapted and has failed

There is a large residue of paste on the processor

The card otherwise looks fine. I'll clean up

I removed the Catweasel-ZII IDE controller
making a note of the ribbon positions. Again
not sure if this is working properly

I was expecting the 3.1 ROM

Not the original 3.0 ROMS. Means the OS
will be 3.0 on the machine. Just that it
has the newer icons which is strange

And so the left hand side of the daughter
board is now stripped back

With the wires out the way I was able to
fully withdraw the casing holding the mobo
from the main case for the machine

OK to the right side of the daughterboard
and removing the additional port controller

This exposed the PicassoIV with all the add-on
cards for the graphics card

Just needed to record where all the various
cables were connected

Time to extract the PicassoIV being very careful

Card extracted and main motherboard exposed

A very mucky PicassoIV in need of a clean


Yellow light checking for battery damage
picking up some nasty stuff around the base
of the SIMM support and nearby pins and chip legs

Buster 11 which is a good sign

OK with the motherboard clear I have to decide
on tactics. Well in truth the 040 is the first
port of call. I have to reconnect up with just
the processor and check if SysInfo picks up the
card and can carry out a speed test. If that
fails I will swap the card out and try another

I'll give the case a good clean and remove the
spider debris that built up over the years behind
the table. The poor thing was in there when I opened
up but is gone now. Spiders can be very destructive
with droppings. Mostly when they get into my boxes and
treasured books.

The problem is that I have no history on this
computer. I do not know if it was ever working
In truth I sense it was a faulty machine and had
been tinkered with. I am hoping it is the cards
and not the motherboard. A base machine is always
useful. The mouse worked which is often a good sign

And so I will take the motherboard back to a base
Amiga 4000d 040 and work up from there. In truth
I sense anything could be at fault. I need to check
the SIMMs and the PicassoIV.

Exciting stuff... or not. More to follow

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Last updated 11/10/2017

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