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Powerbook 145B on order!

gibbsjoh

Member
Hi everyone!
New to this forum (well, returning to it) but a Mac user since 1996. I went in reverse order and started on PowerPC (Performa 6200) then picked up a PowerBook 150 a year later and entered the 68k world on the Mac (Amiga user since 1991...)

Anyway... I've picked up a relatively good condition PowerBook 145B and it should arrive after Christmas. Super excited! I'm not sure of the specs but it runs, and superficially, despite ghosting on the display (which may just be contrast settings) it looks good.

Question to the forum - should I look to get this recapped ASAP? Is it safe to use for a bit before that, given the fact it does run and has been powered up in the past few weeks?

Thanks!
 

beachycove

Well-known member
I would cheerfully run it for a while myself, though things like bad ghosting are a sign that a recap is necessary.
 

Johnnya101

Well-known member
If it works, I would get it recapped ASAP because getting it redone before things get messy and destroyed will cost less/save a lot of time.

As long as it works as is, of course it is safe to use.
 

desertrout

Well-known member
Agreeing with everyone, including the advice that recapping the display and inverter board should happen soon to minimize damage caused by leaking electrolyte. I would also double check the PSU to ensure it's in spec. The ghosting is partly due to the display being passive matrix (though I may not sure what you may mean by ghosting).

The User's Guide is always good review: https://archive.org/details/macintosh-users-guide-for-macintosh-powerbook-145b
Repair Guide is helpful for teardown and part identification, and some simple troubleshooting: https://www.applerepairmanuals.com/the_manuals_are_in_here/PowerBook_140_145_B_170.pdf
 

androda

Well-known member
It's definitely a better idea to replace capacitors as soon as possible. If there's capacitor fluid present on the board, running an electric current through the traces will cause the fluid to actively eat away the copper.

Due to this literal electrolytic effect (they are called electrolytic capacitors, after all), if you use a computer with leaking capacitors until it stops working and has errors it could be too late. The electrolyte might have wicked up into the legs of ICs and eaten away at the lead frame or legs until they basically just fall off. Capacitor fluid is nasty stuff.
 

3lectr1cPPC

Well-known member
That screen is definitely in need of new caps ASAP. Besides the fact that all of them are needing it as this point, that screen shows really bad artifacting indicative of failing caps. Passive-Matrix displays will always have some of those lines, but it shouldn't be that bad. If they get bad enough (and they will eventually), you'll lose contrast control all together and you won't be able to see anything.
 

Juror22

Well-known member
Recap (everyone is correct) and check (replace) the backup battery on the interconnect board.
 

desertrout

Well-known member
check (replace) the backup battery on the interconnect board.
Replacing it is optional as it's not required for operation, but it's very likely dead and possibly leaking so I agree it should at least be removed. If you do want to replace it, it's likely a soldered-in version, so VL2330-1. Alternatively, you can install a CR3032 holder. But the battery is only really needed for saving date/time and general settings.
 

gibbsjoh

Member
Thanks again, all! I have a lead on someone who can do recaps here in the UK but if anyone can recommend anyone/any company let me know :cool:
 

gibbsjoh

Member
it arrived! Almost pristine condition! Excited doesn’t describe it.

It won’t boot with the battery in. Battery shows full but I’m getting 1.8V on the multimeter. Power supply is good, 7.8V.

Screen is a lot better than the photos but the contrast fluctuates randomly, and the backlight is either on or off. I get a chessboard on initial power on, then muddy contrast until the finder loads. Going to get on the recap ASAP.

It’s got 8MB onboard and a 80MB hd. And! And! The internal modem! Very exciting. I hope I can find a local dialup number and that VoIP will let me use it

Some sticking on the trackball in the up direction, made a bit better with a 2 min clean.

System 7.1. What are thoughts about going to system 7.5? I had that on my 150 back in the day and it seemed fine with 8MB.
7C0AC840-B6CF-4688-866F-DDE1534B64E4.jpeg
 

Johnnya101

Well-known member
Wow, a working HDD too! You might want to back it up if you care about anything on there, those old ones are known to fail.

You should be good with 7.5.5.
 

gibbsjoh

Member
Wow, a working HDD too! You might want to back it up if you care about anything on there, those old ones are known to fail.

You should be good with 7.5.5.
No there’s nothing of any significance on there. Ended up deleting a bunch of apps!

Good to know 7.5.5 is ok - I’ve actually never used 7.1 and I didn’t realise how many of the things I took for granted on system 7 were added in 7.5.

Zapping the PRAM also seemed to fix the contrast issue on boot. Floppy drive works fine too. Maybe time for a RaSCSI soon!

Im also about to orders Wombat adb-usb thing- $20 shipping to here but I can’t find a ADB mouse for less than 20 bucks plus international shipping, and the trackball is driving me nuts!
 
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