Apple II power supply restoration?

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Apple II power supply restoration?

Hi All,

 

I have an Apple II power supply with an early serial number (#2178) that i'm looking to refurbish.. I know ReactiveMicro sells repair services ($90)..

 

1) Is it worth it?

2) Is this something I could generally do myself with a soldering iron and multimeter?

 

 

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carefully

Diagnosing switching power supply issues can be challenging, because of two reasons. Firstly, if the PSU runs off line voltage, it has areas that are dangerous if touched, even after power is removed. Second, a switching supply relies on analog behavior of many parts that feed back into one another so that it can be hard to isolate which component is the cause of the problem.

 

A digital multimeter (DMM) would be usable for non-operating tests with capacitors discharged. In particular, the diode mode is very useful for finding failed transistors or diodes. But the tool is pretty limited for these types of problems, for instance, if you probe two points of the circuit while it is operating, a DMM can only give you a numeric measurement of voltage, it cannot show the waveshape which is often important. As for your soldering iron, there are components on PSUs that require a lot of heat to rework, which can be a special task in itself.

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If you can use a soldering

If you can use a soldering iron at all, your skills are good enough to install the ReActive replacement yourself. And personally, I say it's worth it. The kit fits into the original metal enclosusre in your system so I see little reason not to just replace the whole PCB. On some machines where it's hard to fit a modern replacement I'm more keen to recap and spend time servicing the stock PSU, but, the original Apple II power supplies aren't rated for a ton of current on the expansion slots anyway. Factor that in with hours spent, and IMHO, the reactive kit is a better use of your time and money and also more likely to reliably power your machine for a long time.

 

I have installed the ReActive kit myself into an IIgs and IIe and it's been working great. The IIe has a card in literally every slot, and the IIgs is close. 

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I believe ReActive Micro's

I believe ReActive Micro's "service" involves swapping out the circuit board inside the power supply with their new one.  While this is a great repair for a non-collectible unit, I wouldn't recommend it for an early low serial # Apple II.  You want to keep that as original as possible.  That means replacing only the components that are actually bad.  That's a lot more difficult and probaly more expensive due to labor costs even though it requires less parts.  But it will preserve the value.

 

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skate323k137 wrote:If you can
skate323k137 wrote:

If you can use a soldering iron at all, your skills are good enough to install the ReActive replacement yourself. And personally, I say it's worth it. The kit fits into the original metal enclosusre in your system so I see little reason not to just replace the whole PCB. On some machines where it's hard to fit a modern replacement I'm more keen to recap and spend time servicing the stock PSU, b

 

For machines that are cheap and plentiful like //e and IIgs I'd agree...  But few people are going to load up an early ][ with cards and use it hard.  As I said in my previous post...  the ReActive Micro replacement is great for what it is...  but unless you want to drop the value of a collectible machine down a lot...  not good for that.

 

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Fair enough. I suppose for

Fair enough.

 

I suppose for something early/rare I can agree, but soley from a financial standpoint, which isn't really how I view the hobby. I'm not out here to devalue anything, when I do work I do it well. But I do not dictate my decision to install a proper power supply from a recent decade on someone else's view of the machines resale value. 

 

I tend to use my machines, and many expansion cards are irreplaceable or valuable too, so a reliable power supply within the original enclosure raises the value of pretty much any machine I would buy. But that does fall mostly under the "common" ones mentioned (IIgs / IIe).

 

I must have skimmed the serial initially, I mainly made my post just saying that the ReActive replacement is easy if you want to do it. But for something like this I can certainly see preserving the PCB too and not gutting the PSU enclosure. 

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skate323k137 wrote:Fair
skate323k137 wrote:

Fair enough.

 

I suppose for something early/rare I can agree, but soley from a financial standpoint, which isn't really how I view the hobby. I'm not out here to devalue anything, when I do work I do it well. But I do not dictate my decision to install a proper power supply from a recent decade on someone else's view of the machines resale value. 

 

I ten

A good compromise would be to buy a totally other power supply and use that one and keep the original one unmolested or just restored to working oerder.

 

 

More expensive option -- but it preserves the value of the machine while letting it be used more fully.

 

 

 

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I'd buy the ReActive Micro

I'd buy the ReActive Micro universal power supply kit and be happy that it is new, quiet and noise-free, and reliable.

Once you install that in place of your original power supply's circuit board you will never know that a modern power supply is inside the case.

 

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