View Full Version : SOL-20 Fair Price

September 1st, 2014, 03:35 PM
Thinking about selling my backup SOL-20 , i have rebuild the keyboard with new pads .
Overall in Good shape .
What is the current going rate on these .

September 2nd, 2014, 02:27 AM
Sol-20 can range a lot. A rusted basket case can be found for $500-1000. A perfect working one that looks like it just came out of the factory has not been sold publicly for a while, but the last one I recall was about $2500, so I would assume they have gone up since then as the Sol-20 has started to become popular as people discover what an awesome machine they are. Then again two decent, not perfect ones have been coming up on ebay as buy it now for 2500+ and have not sold. Sometimes it's a matter of timing as well, does someone want one who has the money right now...

Now none of that include if you have a working disk setup or anything like that. Plus working does mean being able to load off cassette and not just doing a memory dump and also confirming that the serial IO is functional.

September 2nd, 2014, 05:53 AM
I agree that a Sol-20 is a fine machine, particularly for a S-100 test-bed. You've done a fine job restoring that machine by appearance of the photos.

I noticed the decal or graphic overlay absence, and thought I'd point out that those can be remade professionally. If there are enough Sol-20 owners in need, it might be worth doing a batch particularly for a machine that still draws a market.

And yes, a graphic overlay would cost more than the Sol-20 today... so its a matter of market and really dedicated owners willing to buy a slice of that cost. Just a matter of calculating how much the missing graphic knocks down the price, times the number of people that would be better off adding one. But as the Sol-20 was one of the most eye-catching computers of its day, its important.

Design capture and color matching is very modern. To get authentic colors, you'd probably want multiple sources both from aged Sol-20s and from color photos in advertisements back in the day. As their rate of color aging differs, you could derive the originals.

September 2nd, 2014, 07:04 AM
After a long dry spell with no Sol-20's on eBay, there was a rush of Sol-20 sales earlier this year. Probably because of the short-term "glut," most sold for around $1200-$1500 from what I recall - including one in working condition with floppy drive and TV as a monitor. On the other hand, some sellers put on a very high price tag and just keep re-listing until the right buyer shows up.


September 2nd, 2014, 08:04 AM
I don't recall one with a floppy drive. Was it a Helios II or just a normal drive?

September 2nd, 2014, 10:30 AM
Single 5.25" floppy with a little TV set modified to use as a monitor, from what I recall.

September 2nd, 2014, 11:06 AM
The front logo art has been already recreated by Nama. I updated his size a bit to match my examples so it's now dead on. They cost about $10 to have made on a professional magazine printer. You cannot tell the difference other than they are not "faded". The original one was printed on magazine material and cut out. That material does fade easily.

September 2nd, 2014, 11:56 AM
That's a lot better price for the logo artwork.

We use a graphic overlay laminate behind Lexan in instrumentation and that would have cost more than the Sol-20 today just in one-time engineering costs. After that they're cheap per unit but you'd never find buyers for all the units in a minimal production run.

Of course the mylar laminate would last longer, hold its colors longer and have been impact resistant. :)

September 3rd, 2014, 05:15 AM
The key is to be original. The original is a magazine print cut out and usually taped at the edge to the plexi with scotch tape.