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NathanAllan
August 13th, 2003, 03:02 AM
Has anyone ever made a pc floppy drive work on a C64/128? I have been looking around but so far have found nothing but serial slave, making a pc into a virtual disk drive for a commodore. That's close, but what about taking a pc drive and hooking it up somehow to the paralell port or anything like that??

http://www.cling.gu.se/~cl3polof/serslave/

I might set up an old 386 specifically to run as a serial slave to the Commodore! 8)

Nathan

carlsson
August 14th, 2003, 06:32 AM
As you might know, the Commodore peripherals are "intelligent", which means they include a CPU of their own (typically a 6502) and controller software. You can send a job to the drive and continue working with the main computer if no output from the drive is expected.

Now, a typical PC floppy is a "dumb" animal, which needs a controller device just like the ones integrated on your PC motherboard or in the old days was delivered on an ISA expansion card (together with serial ports etc). Of course, you could try to drive a PC floppy controller from the C64 (or emulate the floppy controller in software), but I'm not sure how easy and efficient it would be.

I'm not quite sure what you would like to accomplish, but maybe you want to buy something like the FD-2000 which is a high-density 3.5" drive for the Commodore computers which can read IBM PC disks. I believe there are DIY projects on the web where you could put together your own drive by using a PC floppy, a controller device and some glue logic. Maybe this is exactly what you are looking for? Technically you are building your own interface between the floppy and the computer.

By the way, there are a couple of projects similar to Serial Slave, e.g. IDE64, HDD64 and so on. The only difficulity is to know where to look...

NathanAllan
August 14th, 2003, 01:45 PM
YOu're pointing me in the right direction, thanks! I think I might get a FD2000, though I will have to wrestle with that price of $189.00. I may be able to find schematics somewhere. Thanks for the information!!!

Nathan

geneb
August 18th, 2003, 05:19 PM
I'm planning on using 64HDD and an XE1541 cable. This will allow me to use a PC as a drive for the C-64 (and eventually, 128). 64HDD has a lot of really cool features, but most of them are only available in the for-pay version.

g.

carlsson
August 19th, 2003, 07:26 AM
The 3.5" DIY project is on

http://www.students.tut.fi/~leinone3/dcn.html

if anyone is interested in building one.

NathanAllan
August 20th, 2003, 02:09 AM
I think I will definitely do that DIY project. As well as use serial slave, heh heh. SO many projects, so little time!

Speaking of floppies, does anyone know where I can get a head cleaner for a 5.25 disk, and some three-inch floppies(not 3.5)?

Nathan

Erik
August 20th, 2003, 05:48 AM
Speaking of floppies, does anyone know where I can get a head cleaner for a 5.25 disk, and some three-inch floppies(not 3.5)?

The only place I've ever seen head cleaning disks and 3" floppies is on eBay. I've never had a need for the latter, but I've purchased a few head cleaning kits for reasonable prices (5.25" and 8") on eBay.

Now that the Vintage Computer Marketplace is starting up, it should become a better source.

Erik

NathanAllan
August 20th, 2003, 06:28 AM
I spoke too soon, I found the disks. My friend Jim out of Scotland has an Amstrad CPC664 that uses them and he is going to send me some. I jus thope they work. Tandy and Amstrad is a world apart, the architecture might be, too. I will check eBay for the cleaner. I never thought I would nee done, but someone from the obsolete computer helpline was using his disks a lot one day, and his drives stopped working after a time, and it came down to the heads getting gunked up. Want to take preventative maintenance.

Nathan

CaptainCommodore
August 30th, 2003, 09:15 PM
About a month ago, I saw a cable that could connect your 1541 floppy drive to your PC. I guess it could be used with a C64 emulation. Hmmm, interest anyone at all? Next time I see it I'm getting it, but first I must find a GOOD C64 emulation. Anyone, suggestions? Sites?
:::The Recycler:::

NathanAllan
August 31st, 2003, 03:54 PM
Heya Captain,
I have been researching, and the cable is one to let you use a program called StarCommander (can't remember if it has a space in there) to copy 1541 disks to image files for use with an emulator. CCS64 is the emulator that I use, but so far haven't been able to get progs that were from other sources than the ccs64 page to work with it. Always goes back to the "ready" screen.

Picked up a datasette for $7 at a second hand store the other day. Unknown and untested, but couldn't beat the price. Can always use it for parts or rig something to make it an audio device. Maybe. They had an original C64 there too but it looked like it had been beaten up. Had all the keys but the case looked like it had been beaten against the wall or something, decided to skip it.

CCS64 website: http://www.computerbrains.com/ccs64/

CaptainCommodore
August 31st, 2003, 10:58 PM
Well, actually if they weren't asking to much for the Commodore, you can always bring it home, take out the boards and make a nice wall mount in your work shop. I've been looking for a "dummy" to do that, but hey. Thats just me.

ask the dude who owns the store if you can open it up and see how the board looks.

carlsson
September 1st, 2003, 07:24 AM
About a month ago, I saw a cable that could connect your 1541 floppy drive to your PC. I guess it could be used with a C64 emulation.

I'm 99% certain this was one of the X*1541 series cables:

http://sta.c64.org/xcables.html

These can be used with MS-DOS based StarCommander, or possibly with Windows applications (under development) or various Linux solutions.

For some odd reason, previously when I mentioned ways to connect a floppy, I forgot the Catweasel series. There once was an ISA (or Amiga) card called Catweasel, and now there is a Catweasel Mk III which is PCI based and has connections both for 1541 and Amiga drive, plus a SID slot if you have any spare sound chips.

I'm not sure you can use a datasette as an audio device, as I seem to recall something about its interior A/D circuit cutting off odd frequencies. But you're welcome to try, and maybe you'll find a new meaning of the word "lo-fi". :-)

Classicsat
September 3rd, 2003, 05:56 PM
StarCommander works the other way to Image to 1541 floppy. You can also copy files from 1541 floppies, and d64 and t64 images to PC and the other way.

Unknown_K
September 11th, 2003, 11:54 AM
Star Commander works fairly well and the cable used isnt too expensive.

Kaptain Skitzo
November 29th, 2003, 04:42 AM
I think I will definitely do that DIY project. As well as use serial slave, heh heh. SO many projects, so little time!

Speaking of floppies, does anyone know where I can get a head cleaner for a 5.25 disk, and some three-inch floppies(not 3.5)?

Nathan

I never use those things....when my heads need cleaning, I remove the case and PCBoard(above the drive mech in a 1541) lift the little bar that presses the disk to the heads, and clean then with rubbing alcohol (70%) and a q-tip. It's a lot cheaper, and doesn't scrape your heads. Have you ever FELT those cleaning disks? They seem pretty abrasive to me, at least for something delicate like your drive heads.
Actually, I use that cleaning method for the "spring cleaning" of all my motherboards, etc....
If you've read my list(which doesn't consist of ANY of my MAC/PC stuff), you can only imagion how long it takes to clean all the units.

NathanAllan
December 7th, 2003, 11:37 PM
I can't believe that from the time I first started this thread I STILL haven't had a chance to do anything with my C= stuff. I have managed to pick up a veritable truckload of stuff though. Instead of using StarCommander or SerialSlave or the FD2000, I am gonna go with Contiki and the package that is now available. It's for just over $100 USD, so it is cheaper than any of the other alternatives and easier. Plus it'll let me network everything with a regular ethernet hub. I have a dead 64, never thought about a wall mount! I have also lots of odd hardware from medical equipment being installed at the hospital I am currently working at, including a wall mount bracket that just happens to fit perfectly a c64. It seems like every day they are tossing excess hardware that was either spare, or over-ordered or slightly damaged in shipping. I'll put it in my collections later, after I get a new inventory up.

Nathan