Reverse Engineering 15 yr old electronics

Douglas Taylor dj.taylor at
Fri Nov 11 13:43:14 CST 2005

While I, like a lot in this group, tinker with old computers, I have 
started another project that involves more than old computers.  Hope this 
is close to being on topic, some of you may find it interesting.

I purchased parts of a Nicolet Fourier Transform Spectrometer with the goal 
of putting together a working Michaelson Interferometer.  What I have is 
the beamsplitter/moving mirror portion (essentially the optical/mechanical 
portion of a Michaelson Interferometer) and the electronics which 
controlled the moving mirror, counted laser fringes and triggered the A/D.

What I don't have is circuit schematics that tell me how to connect power 
to these parts and what voltages, and how to cable the electronics to the 
interferometer portion.

Any tips on how to efficiently reconstruct circuit diagrams from inspection 
of the electronics?  There are two cards, with standard TTL and analog 
parts.  The printed circuit has a design date of 1985, while the IC's have 
88-89 dates.


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