New iie hardware

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Last seen: 1 year 11 months ago
Joined: Oct 18 2020 - 00:53
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New iie hardware

Has anyone created pcb plans that can be sent to a place like pcbway for new apple iie hardware?  I'm interested in things like serial boards, ide boards, or scsi boards.  Some of the prices of these things are getting silly.  And it seems like I should be able to solder my own together without too much trouble.

Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: Mar 31 2020 - 19:55
Posts: 848
A new replacement for the //e

A new replacement for the //e mainboard would >= £2000. 


You would not save money in that route, even if it were to exist. Establish what cards you want and need to accomplsh your goals. 


You need to realise that the cost on repop bards is so high because the production volume is so low. A replacement //e mainboard that incorporates all of these things would reuire many tens o thousands in time for desig, the the parts alsone would cost £2000. That means that a break even cost would exceed that.


I hae designed retro HW and brought it to maket. It is not a cheap prospect, ad the reason that all of this HW costs so much to the consumer, is simply because it costs that much to produce and to manufacture. In an ideal world, one of us woud own a PCB mill, one of us would have a huge stock of alterra parts, and one of us would own a plastic factory. In reality, when you want something as simple as a custom connector the overhead is US£25K+.


I designed custom HW for other systems, and the cost for one connecotr that I needed was 25K tooling, n a minimum order of 5K pieces at US$10/piece. Thus, US$75K ust for one part on a product where that was only one of many parts. When I needed custom springs made to provide stock to service old 80s disk drives, I had a US5k tooling cost an a minimum order of 5000 springs a US$0.20 a piece. Spread the tooling cost across the springs, and I need to sell every one for US$1.20 us to break even.  Considering my projected volume need was < 200 pieces, I would need to charge US$40 per spring  to break even. 


Can you imagine paying that for one extension spring? People would accuse me of price gouging, but that was my legitimate raw cost, and I would not even make a profit in the process, while being accused of trying to fe over clients. t ust is not worth it. 


Paying a few hundred for cards isn't price gouging. Most people who do this barely break even. 

jwg1962's picture
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Joined: Jan 29 2012 - 07:17
Posts: 360
I second what Timelord is

I second what Timelord is saying.  I did the Apple IIe diagnostics card and it took alot more time and money than I thought it would, but I learned alot.

Last seen: 1 year 11 months ago
Joined: Oct 18 2020 - 00:53
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This is surprising.  You can

This is surprising.  You can get a circuit board design for the Amiga 500 and have a small run made by pcbway for not very much money.  I think the minimum run is like 10 boards or something.  A lot f people do this and sell the extra boards on ebay.  So they're generally inexpensive.  Getting the custom chips for the Amiga 500 is another matter.  You usually have to cannibalize a dead board.  The same is true for the commodore 64.


The Apple 2e was supposed to be made from off the shelf parts.  I'm surprised the same situation doesn't exist for that machine.

Lee Adamson's picture
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Joined: Oct 11 2018 - 22:53
Posts: 92
GGLabs makes a clone of the

GGLabs makes a clone of the Apple II SCSI card.  It's available as a kit.  $20 for a bare PCB or $30 for a bare PCB and all the PLAs (if you don't have a GAL programmer).  You supply everything else, including a NLA scsi controller chip (that for now is still readily available on ebay from various shady Chinese electronics scalpers).  It was a common chip in many different scsi cards for many different architectures, so I don't see it getting too rare anytime soon.  Board requires soldering SMD components, but they are all 1206 size iirc and aren't too difficult to deal with.


I'm happy with mine.  Here's my assembly video:


The BMOW Apple2Pi is essentially a super-serial card with no ROM.  If you added the ROM, a MAX232 or two, and a DB connector, you'd have a super serial card I think.  I've built it (without the ROM) on breadboard before.  It's a pretty simple board.  Problem is the new-production 65C51 chips have a critical bug in the hardware implementation, so for full compatibility you have to get an older out of production 6551.  These are still available on ebay from the same shady Chinese electronics scalpers, but they are getting pretty expensive and given how popular they are with all the rest of the 8-bit community (lookin' at you, C= guys. ;P ), I 'spect the price will continue to rise.  It appears that WDC has no plans to fix the bug in the 65c51, and have basically been telling people to "design around it".


GlitchWorks sells a protoboard with an Apple II bus connector on it.  It probably wouldn't be too awful to strap up a serial card on it, but I don't think I'd want to do anything too super complicated on protoboard.  Well, I guess one could wire-wrap for more complicated stuff, but that would get in the way of the neighboring slot or two I 'spect.

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Where can we get the Apple II SCSI card

Where can we get the Apple II SCSI card for $20?  Looks like GGLabs is out of stock.

Anyone else carrying these?

Last seen: 1 year 7 months ago
Joined: Jan 31 2018 - 00:03
Posts: 17
Super Serial Cards

I've purchased a total of 3 super serial cards over the last 2 years. If you keep your eyes open, I've been able to get 2 of them for around $25 including shipping and actually scored 1 of them for about $12 due to a mispelling and bad choice of categories. Takes some time, but it turned out to be worth it. Now both //e's and the IIGS have SSCs.

Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: May 26 2020 - 00:48
Posts: 7
Not Seen IIe But Have Seen II+Plus Plenty of Board Options

IIe has some custom chips on it. II+ was all off the shelf. You can pick up a II+ MB for like 50$ on fleaBay right now. I've bought a few boards from this seller in the past. Nice guy. Solid products so far:


You can get sound card kits and other kits from ReactiveMicro:


You can also find new ROM card boards on fleaBay:


And SD floppy drives: 


There are designs complete with gerbers floating around the web as well.  Like this dual GOIP interface: 


Or you can search HackADay:


Lots of optiojns out there. 


Also lots of old books on fleaBay to get you started on building your own designs. Or just fab what's in the book. :-)





Last seen: 1 month 1 week ago
Joined: Jan 18 2021 - 03:31
Posts: 11
Sprint Layout, Time, KiCAD and a source for Chips and Firmware

Recreating a board is not too hard.

You only "need to have balls" to strip a working card, clean it, scan it, repopulate it to a working card again and use the scan as a template for i.e. SprintLayOut 6.

Then get the schematics for the card or reverse engineer it yourself.

The hardes part is getting the special chips and the firmware for some of those proms, eproms, etc.


I did a Commodore 250407 board replica for myself and went through all those steps. 

All together on and off it took me around 9 month to finish.

3 weeks after I was done and assembled my first own replica PCB a guy named Rob Taylor on tindie sold 250407 replica ...


If you are into gambling: sometimes has special chips for various retro computers on sale but it is a gamble if you get working ones.

Paypal payment is a must to get your money back if the chips are bad.


If you need PCB --- JLCPCB or PCBWay are good and the prices are acceptable.

If your PCB got errors that, are not vissible on the gerbers you sent them ... a foto of the board / the place with the failure is enough and they sent you either a new error free set of boards at no cost or give you a refund / discount.


I would like to do a Apple IIe replica board but: I do "not have balls" to strip my only Apple IIe and I have no idea where to get those Apple specific IC that are on the board.


A very good Apple II Rev. 0 I build myself is on the net at


Last seen: 8 hours 51 min ago
Joined: Jun 18 2010 - 13:54
Posts: 727
And of course, if you can't

And of course, if you can't find ROMs or want burn EPROMs with adapters, there's always ROMXe coming soon.

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