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Thread: Help with my Grid Case 1520

  1. #1

    Default Help with my Grid Case 1520

    Hello guys! I just got this Grid Case 1520 from a junk sale from Facebook, and Im trying to get it to work. It turns on, and the cursor blinks (A gorgeous Orange!!!), but it doesn't get past that. I can hear the hard drive spinning up and slowing down. Im sure the hard drive is bad, but I've got no idea what kind or where to find them. Any information will help me and be greatly appreciated. Excited to learn about this sweet machine!

  2. #2

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    Welcome! Just the cursor blinking? Does it have a floppy? Even if the drive is bad it will display the bios message . First thing to do is open it up an make sure the battery is not leaking, then try re seating the ram but be careful as the sockets and pins on the ram are very fragile.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    This should help with your 1520's HD.

    Where you can find a replacement is another matter...

  4. #4

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    Thanks. Where is the RAM located inside of the case??? Yeah, I dont have a floppy in it, should i be trying to find some software for it? Im not even sure where to find blank floppys or how to get data onto it lolol.

  5. #5

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    Where is the ram located if u don't mind me asking

  6. #6

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    Any old version of dos will boot it from the floppy, if you have no floppy drive you need a external one(hard to find) if you have the rom sockets you can make a boot rom .the ram is inside the case .
    go to the yahoo grid group and download as many files as you can before its all wiped.

    With the screen closed Remove the 2 screws under the black covers on the back, slide the cover forward a couple of mm and then lift it off.
    pivot the screen up and to the left and then pop off the keyboard cover and you are in.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Salisbury Maryland
    Posts
    785

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    Getting in and out of the old fifteen hundred series systems is a challenge if you don’t know the secrets! Like it says above, pop the two black feet covers in the back of the system and there will be a screw under each. I have found that if you back them out about a quarter inch and the tap the screwdriver it will pop the back housing top out so you can then remove the screws and then the cover.
    The display will then flop over out of its hinges but watch out being some displays have a ground wire on the opposite side of all the screen wires.
    With the display you can then lift the plastic panel around the keyboard, the back side is louse but the front is held by two snap in clips on the bottom chassis.
    Once the plastic panel over the keyboard is removed you will then see the 256 Kb SIPPS, just like SIMS but with wire legs into the mother board.
    Once you pop the back cover you can see the power supply, screen power supply and drive system. You will have a floppy drive (720K) or an internal Hard Drive depending on the model.
    If you have the floppy I can send you a formatted GRiD DOS disk although you can also use any old DOS disk you have, I have run 3.3 and 5.0 with no issues but the GRiD DOS has several files unlike to the species that allow you to do things like use the internal modem if it’s installed.
    What color is the display? There are three different displays with a poor LCD where the florescent tubes are always blown. A red gas plasma display that’s monochrome only and the Yellow plasma display that was only on the military secure tempested systems.
    I still have several around the shop and reading your stuff inspires me to go back and maybe play with them.
    Maybe even do a video on how to disassemble and put one back together! If you want to see what they look like with a yellow plasma display I have one being used as a terminal with an older computer on YouTube at:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kJdTduulvAQ
    That’s a gridcase 3 that was the model before your 1520 but that’s what the yellow tempested display looks like.
    Good Luck!

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Qbus View Post
    Getting in and out of the old fifteen hundred series systems is a challenge if you donít know the secrets! Like it says above, pop the two black feet covers in the back of the system and there will be a screw under each. I have found that if you back them out about a quarter inch and the tap the screwdriver it will pop the back housing top out so you can then remove the screws and then the cover.
    The display will then flop over out of its hinges but watch out being some displays have a ground wire on the opposite side of all the screen wires.
    With the display you can then lift the plastic panel around the keyboard, the back side is louse but the front is held by two snap in clips on the bottom chassis.
    Once the plastic panel over the keyboard is removed you will then see the 256 Kb SIPPS, just like SIMS but with wire legs into the mother board.
    Once you pop the back cover you can see the power supply, screen power supply and drive system. You will have a floppy drive (720K) or an internal Hard Drive depending on the model.
    If you have the floppy I can send you a formatted GRiD DOS disk although you can also use any old DOS disk you have, I have run 3.3 and 5.0 with no issues but the GRiD DOS has several files unlike to the species that allow you to do things like use the internal modem if itís installed.
    What color is the display? There are three different displays with a poor LCD where the florescent tubes are always blown. A red gas plasma display thatís monochrome only and the Yellow plasma display that was only on the military secure tempested systems.
    I still have several around the shop and reading your stuff inspires me to go back and maybe play with them.
    Maybe even do a video on how to disassemble and put one back together! If you want to see what they look like with a yellow plasma display I have one being used as a terminal with an older computer on YouTube at:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kJdTduulvAQ
    Thatís a gridcase 3 that was the model before your 1520 but thatís what the yellow tempested display looks like.
    Good Luck!
    Thanks for the info!! I think ive got the red screen version and its beautiful. I think the Hard drive is broken, because unplugging it got me to the BIOS screen, would just having a floppy drive of DOS work then? How would i save information?.

    I would love it if we could get in contact so i can get some DOS floppys. Would be very much appreciated!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Salisbury Maryland
    Posts
    785

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    The red plasma display is a thing of beauty! I think you will have the 15 pin connector on the back that is a Old School VGA output and thru the keyboard you can turn that on or off using the blue or yellow keys.
    The 1520/286 and 1530/386 did run in basic 480 X 640 VGA but I may be confused with the 1550 that was the later 386 with the internal pointing device.
    One of my 1550 had the LCD display that died and I swapped a Red plasma in and everyone who sees it is always impressed.
    Will have to check but from what I remember the floppy drive was nothing special and any drive that fits and mates with the same connector will work, you just need the ribbon cable from the mother board to the drive. You can use the same power connector that was on the hard drive for power. Think at one time back in the day had a long cable that came outside the case and extended the power cable so I was able to test drives outside the system and used an old 1550 or 1530 just for testing floppy drives. The bios for the system allow you to use an 360K 5 ľ drive along with the 720K but think you need at least the 1550 for a 1.4M drive but may be wrong. Will have to pop open a 1530 and see what’s going on being don’t think I have had a 1530 open in about ten years. I know the GRiD case three used a big 720K drive but by the time you get to the 1550 they had half height drives.
    I have a couple parts systems stored out in the garage and if I get time will try to go out there this weekend and look to see if I can come up with a cable and maybe a floppy but it would not be a GRiD floppy. It won’t be a hard drive but you would be surprised what you can do with just a DOS disk. You can run small applications, format disks and do things like terminal emulation or maybe a Telenet connect if you have the internal modem.

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