Tom Watson tsw-cc at
Wed Mar 10 21:30:03 CST 2010

Ethan Dicks <ethan.dicks at> wrote:

>On Tue, Mar 9, 2010 at 4:01 PM, Dave McGuire mcguire at> wrote:
>> On Mar 9, 2010, at 3:20 PM, William Donzelli wrote:
>>> Curious...
>>> Who here has a DECwriter I (LA30)? This is the original early 70s
>>> DECwriter made out of Flip Chips. Google for a picture.
>> ?Not me. :-(
>>> Who here would like a DECwriter I?
>>> No, I am not selling, just curious...
>> ?Oh, I'd definitely drool over such a device. ?I've typed on no end of LA34s, LA36s, and LA120s, but never an LA30.

>Agreed - I have run miles of paper through the common models of
teleprinters, but have never seen an LA30 up close.


I bunch of years ago, I got an LA30 decwriter that was about to be "discarded".  I got the prints as well, and I added lower case to it.  I used the ADM-3A method of making the lower case characters up one dot to allow for "decenders" (the LA30 uses a 5x7 matrix).  I took out the 2513 character generator, and re-wired it for a 2716 EPROM.  It is in my "other" garage and works OK.  Plugs into dataphone and all that.  I was lucky that there was an extra pin on the character generator board (or I used the negative supply I don't remember right now).

The real modification I would like to do is add a FIFO chip or some such, as padding each line with a bunch of NUL characters is a pain.

I guess that connecting it to my SBC6120 would be a good retro thing.  Got to get it (the SBC6120) working!!


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