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Old 02-11-2014, 08:43 AM   #1
AmigaBruno
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Default Broken X key on A1200

I hope this shouldn't be too complicated to repair. I bought an original copy of John Madden American Football, dated 1992. I have only played an online version of this before on AOL years ago. I read some of the manual which seemed quite complicated, then I managed to get both teams to be controlled by Madden, so it was in a kind of demo mode, to get more of an idea of how the game worked. The screen for selecting games controls seemed quite complicated. I selected some teams where I knew which colours they used, such as red for Washington or New England, so I could tell the teams apart more easily. Only the names of cities are listed, not the actual team names, so these can and do change whenever a team abandons their home city and moves somewhere completely different, which has happened in the past and has probably changed since 1992. I then found that it seemed I was unable to control my team using either of two joysticks which I plugged in one after the other with the mouse still occupying its own port, so then I switched to using keyboard controls, which are automatically enabled, then it turned out that my team was the other team instead of the one I thought I was controlling. I had to use the keys Z, X, #, /, and ENTER. I didn't think I was hitting the keys very hard, but after a few minutes the X key broke when it suddenly collapsed and came loose! I picked it up off the keyboard and as I hope some of you know, I found a kind of telescopic post which it seems has collapsed. I tried pulling it up again, as well as twisting it, but this didn't fix the problem. I also found that the A1200 now often thinks I'm holding down the X key, which causes lots of Xs to be printed onto the screen during bootup and also affects gameplay in Civilization, where screens of information disappear or choices can be made whenever a key is pressed. Obviously, I need to know how to repair or replace this component, or what else could be done to fix the problem. I don't think changing keymaps will work in this game, which is designed to boot from two floppy disks.
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Old 02-11-2014, 08:52 AM   #2
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

I'm sure it's fixable. If you posted a picture of the broken part it would probably go much further towards fixing it than a million words. However if you don't feel like hunting down repair parts it looks like AmigaKit has replacement A1200 keyboards in stock for $27:

http://amigakit.leamancomputing.com/...roducts_id=336
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Old 02-11-2014, 09:27 AM   #3
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oldsmobile_Mike View Post
I'm sure it's fixable. If you posted a picture of the broken part it would probably go much further towards fixing it than a million words. However if you don't feel like hunting down repair parts it looks like AmigaKit has replacement A1200 keyboards in stock for $27:

http://amigakit.leamancomputing.com/...roducts_id=336
OK, I'll post a couple of pics from different angles ASAP. In the meantime, I can say that when it broke nothing seemed to fly out from under the key. I've looked on the floor and can't see anything that may have been underneath it.

Interestingly enough, I've just looked on www.amigakit.co.uk and only found an A1200 keyboard with an Italian layout, but your link shows one with a UK layout.

As for the actual team names which aren't used in this version of John Madden American Football, only what cities they're based in, I've just been amazed to find out that various teams were based in Los Angeles, but at this moment there's no NFL team based there at all! In this game, I think that the team from Los Angeles plays in a blue strip, though.
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Old 02-11-2014, 10:40 PM   #4
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

The key should have a hollow post, the bottom of which pushes on a carbon coated membrane to close the connection. The return action is likely by a rubber funnel or in some cases a spring. Using a peg such as a wooden Q-tip dowel glued into the two broken ends has always worked for me, but you may have to remove the keyboard for good pressure.
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Old 02-12-2014, 12:03 AM   #5
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

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Originally Posted by danbeaver View Post
The key should have a hollow post, the bottom of which pushes on a carbon coated membrane to close the connection. The return action is likely by a rubber funnel or in some cases a spring. Using a peg such as a wooden Q-tip dowel glued into the two broken ends has always worked for me, but you may have to remove the keyboard for good pressure.
Suggest you carefully remove another key to see if there is a spring under the cap. There is on a 500. Not sure on a 1200. Doing this will allow you to see if there us a marked difference indicating something may have broken.

Examining a working part is often a way to identifying what's wrong with a non working one. The keys pop off with a constant even upward pressure.

No guarantee doing so wont break another one though. Always a risk with these older machines. If there is a spring watch she doesn't go flying.
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Old 02-12-2014, 12:45 AM   #6
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

Send me a picture of the key hole ( ) and if I've got an 'x' spare of the right type you can have it with the post and spring for the price of postage! Easy to fix, you just need a cross head screwdriver.
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Old 02-12-2014, 02:12 AM   #7
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

I believe this is what you're looking for. It needs some retrobrighting but better than nothing! I'm in the UK so if you're across the pond, postage would be about £3 (about $5), I reckon.
Just let me know if I can help.
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:35 AM   #8
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

Wow, the A1200 used springs instead of those little rubber smooshy things? That's nice. For once C= didn't totally cheap out, LOL.
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:45 AM   #9
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

I think some of the later ones use the little plasticky things. I just checked my 1200 here, though, and those are the correct bits. Hopefully his are the same
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:57 AM   #10
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

Quote:
Originally Posted by spirantho View Post
I believe this is what you're looking for. It needs some retrobrighting but better than nothing! I'm in the UK so if you're across the pond, postage would be about £3 (about $5), I reckon.
Just let me know if I can help.
Actually, that looks nothing like what's underneath where the key was. There's no sign of a spring either. I suppose the membrane underneath may have been damaged. I'm in the UK. I'll post some pics of this key and its base later today.
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Old 02-12-2014, 08:04 AM   #11
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

I assumed you were in the US because you mentioned American Football and AOL. Saves on postage though!

You probably have the type with the squidgy rubber then. Are you able to take a photo of another key? You can remove them just by pulling them off, but be careful to pull it off perpendicular to the keyboard or you can break the post it's on.
If you can get a close-up picture of the keyboard where the key was, and the back of the key, I can see what I have... but best would be the back of a different (non-broken) key, the key post and the spring/rubber underneath it.
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Old 02-12-2014, 03:49 PM   #12
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

Quote:
Originally Posted by spirantho View Post
I assumed you were in the US because you mentioned American Football and AOL. Saves on postage though!

You probably have the type with the squidgy rubber then. Are you able to take a photo of another key? You can remove them just by pulling them off, but be careful to pull it off perpendicular to the keyboard or you can break the post it's on.
If you can get a close-up picture of the keyboard where the key was, and the back of the key, I can see what I have... but best would be the back of a different (non-broken) key, the key post and the spring/rubber underneath it.
This game was widely sold here, it mentions Electronic Arts UK, and in the loading stages features a female voice with an English accent, but in the USA it was probably called just “John Madden Football”. AOL was an ISP in the UK, which I joined because they were first to offer cheap calls for Internet access here, but has since been bought and sold lots of times. In the USA they were called America On Line, though.

Here are some pics of the situation with my X key now. I hope this means more to someone out there than it does to me! Just after it broke, I was able to pull up and even twist that white plastic component up, but now I can't even do that. Of course, there are two keys which aren't marked with any characters at all, but I haven't yet felt like taking the plunge and removing them. They may have some use and I prefer to keep my keyboard intact if I can.



I've checked that this game is compatible with other Amigas, so I should be able to run it on my A500 Plus at least for the time being. I really wish there was a hack that could prevent most of the normal stopping and starting in the game, which is the same as in the real thing!
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File Type: jpg Xkey1.jpg (73.9 KB, 16 views)
File Type: jpg Xkey3.jpg (72.9 KB, 15 views)
File Type: jpg Xkey4.jpg (75.5 KB, 16 views)
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Old 02-12-2014, 04:42 PM   #13
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

Somebody with the replacement key should be able to get you fixed right up. Of course you will need to remove the broken bit of "shaft" from down inside the keyboard. Tweezers or needle nose pliers should work fine for that. Also, you're missing a piece - the mushy rubber "spring" described earlier. I think yours should look something like this pic of one of mine (attached pic). Of course this is an A2000...
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File Type: jpg pic.jpg (90.0 KB, 13 views)
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Old 02-12-2014, 05:36 PM   #14
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oldsmobile_Mike View Post
Somebody with the replacement key should be able to get you fixed right up. Of course you will need to remove the broken bit of "shaft" from down inside the keyboard. Tweezers or needle nose pliers should work fine for that. Also, you're missing a piece - the mushy rubber "spring" described earlier. I think yours should look something like this pic of one of mine (attached pic). Of course this is an A2000...
OK, I see. I don't think I'm missing a part. I think my keyboard is probably made differently from the A2000 keyboard. I think I'll have to carefully remove one of the two blank keys to see what's underneath it. Which one should I remove and how should I do it to avoid losing or breaking any parts?
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Old 02-12-2014, 11:57 PM   #15
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Default Re: Broken X key on A1200

You are definitely missing a part... without a spring or rubbery thing, the key will stay down and won't come back up. You will also need to open the keyboard and remove the remnants of the old post (you can't get it from the front), and put a new post in its place.
Prise off the C key very carefully - remember to pull it off directly away from the 1200, don't bend it's plastic post or it'll break too. It's not attached, just held on to the post by friction. Make sure you don't lose the springy bit, and take a photo of the back of the key and the springy thing.
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