[NTLK] Off Topic: Macintosh SE/30 - to buy or not to buy?

Chris Browder kcfoxie at gmail.com
Mon Sep 10 13:15:12 EDT 2012

The Torx screwdriver is $8 at Sears. For the long next model that fits into
the handle. T15 I believe.

On Mon, Sep 10, 2012 at 1:08 PM, James Fraser <
wheresthatistanbul-newtontalk at yahoo.com> wrote:

> Hello,
> --- On Mon, 9/10/12, William Maloney <william.maloney.09 at cnu.edu> wrote:
> > Wow, had no idea buying a vintage Macintosh had so many other
> > dimensions to it.
> Honestly, apart from failing capacitors in the compact Macs, owning a
> vintage Macintosh is not (typically) that big of a deal.  I'm sorry if I
> frightened you with my previous post, but anyone buying a compact Mac (i.e.
> a particular type of vintage computer with certain widely-known problems)
> should know just what it is that they're getting into.
> The thing to bear in mind with vintage computers of -any- kind is that
> manufacturers typically expected (and still typically expect) end users to
> keep the machine for 2-3 years, then the machine would be supplanted by a
> newer, faster model (and/or the manufacturer would go bankrupt). That's how
> computer manufacturers have ended up doing things like, say, using
> relatively fragile foam pads in their keyboards so that if you bought their
> machine (or rather, the kit for their machine):
> http://weblog.ceicher.com/archives/2002/03/vintage_sol20_restoration.html
> ...and kept it around for 20 years, you would then have a machine with an
> inoperable keyboard. :(  Unless, of course, someone were to take pity on
> you and mail you the necessary (and scarcely to be had) replacement foam
> pads:
> http://weblog.ceicher.com/archives/2007/08/sol-keyboard-pads.html
> So compared to relatively obscure machines like the Sol-20, compact Mac
> owners have it made.  Until someone stumbled across his blog, Charles
> Eicher apparently spent more than a -decade- trying to locate replacement
> parts for his Sol.  If you want to replace the capacitors in a compact Mac,
> on the other hand, you can expect to have the parts in your hands before
> the week is out.
> Granted, the replacement process requires a steady hand and soldering
> skills, but if you don't feel up to it, there always seem to be a few folks
> around who are willing to take care of the cap replacement for you.  It's
> just that owning a vintage computer isn't necessarily the "plug it in and
> turn it on"-type experience that we're all used to with newer computers.
> >The Macintosh in question was an SE FDHD but not the faster, more capable
> >SE/30.
> I'm sure this is going to sound pretty sad, but: you've made my week. :)
> By that I mean I'm glad my guess that the machine you were looking at
> might be an SE FDHD (as opposed to an SE/30) turned out to be correct.
>  Even if it wasn't the machine you wanted, at least you were able to
> determine just what is was the owner had to offer.
> That said, the SE/30 is a nice machine to have and it's unfortunate that
> the machine in question didn't turn out to be that particular model. Still,
> the '30 isn't a particularly rare machine and it does show up at places
> like flea markets and thrift shops sometimes.  Not to mention LEM Swap:
> http://lowendmac.com/lists/swap.html
> ...although it's more desirable to pick up a compact Mac in person, not
> only to see exactly what it is you're getting, but also because the cost of
> postage and packing is frequently worth close to (if not in excess of) what
> the machine itself is worth.
> >Pity what happens when we read the fine print.
> At least you didn't make an unnecessary trip...and your money stayed in
> your pocket. ;)
> >If it is still in Richmond, VA when I drive up next week, I will probably
> >stop by and take a look.
> The SE isn't a bad machine.  And $25 for a conversation piece that will
> turn heads when visitors see it your living room isn't too bad a deal (with
> the aforementioned caveat, of course).
> >but I do not have a torx to check it out.
> If you have not much money, you might want to consider a WTB post on LEM
> Swap.  There are people getting into (and out of) the vintage Mac hobby all
> the time and folks are always selling Macs and Mac-related items there.  If
> you can't find a long-shaft T-15 Torx (the tip must be at least 6" from the
> handle so you can reach the screws) locally in, say, a dollar store
> (they've been spotted there on occasion), you can always try asking there.
> But, yeah, unfortunately, purchasing a vintage compact Mac without opening
> up the case and examining the logic board is pretty much tantamount to
> buying a used car without opening up the hood and taking at least a cursory
> glance at the engine.  It's well worth taking a look and checking things
> out firsthand so you don't end up with a high-tech paperweight, though some
> do people have vintage computers on hand in strictly static displays (the
> Computer History Museum, for one).
> Best,
> James Fraser
> ====================================================================
> The NewtonTalk Mailing List - http://newtontalk.net/
> The Official Newton FAQ     - http://splorp.com/newton/faq/
> The Newton Glossary         - http://splorp.com/newton/glossary/
> WikiWikiNewt                - http://tools.unna.org/wikiwikinewt/
> ====================================================================

More information about the NewtonTalk mailing list