Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

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Dbug
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Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Dbug » Sun Jul 17, 2016 4:39 pm

Hello everybody,

last month somebody was selling a MCP40 on eBay, and on an impulse decided to buy it (I had one back in the days, always missed it, and I needed more of red and black stuff).

I also managed to source some new pens (and replacement gears for the mechanism), and on Friday since I had not prepared any prod for the party I decided to give a shot at coding a small something for it on the party place.

You can get it here:
YouTube
Pouet

The source code is actually on the Pouet page, just click on the NFO link on the top right.

Hope you like it :)

@Xeron: How difficult would it be to add a secondary window to Oricutron where we could "write" the actual output a printer? I'm willing to try to make a MCP40 renderer for it, I just need the base support. Also means we could have a practical way to output and visual information while it happens - like profile or debugging information!

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Chema » Sun Jul 17, 2016 5:30 pm

Very nice demo Dbug! It's great to see that printer working... Congrats.

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by iss » Sun Jul 17, 2016 8:59 pm

Nice demo. It's really very fun how MCP40 changes ink pens.
Why not to add some printer music like this one.... ;)

Else, about Oricturon - IMHO everything is doable, but here is a quick and dirty hack to
"intercept" LPRINT's output. Normally Oricutron writes all printer output to file named
'printer_out.txt'. Under *nix all is clear: just use '$mkfifo printer_out.txt' in Oricutron's
main directory and you are ready to read out the printers output from your program.

But I assume you are using mainly Windows which doesn't have the handy 'mkfifo' ...
We have to use Windows pipes:
1. Use HEX editor, open oricutron.exe and find first occurrence of the string 'printer_out.txt'
2. Replace the string with exactly this one: '\\.\\pipe\print' and save the modified exe.
3. Use the 'Test.exe' from the attached archive.
4. Start modified oricutron and LPRINT something - it should appear shortly in the Test.exe window.
In the attached archive you can find the source code 'main.cpp' which is actually taken from MS developper resources HERE and you can modify it to create MCP40's graphics language parser/interpreter or just to monitor LPRINTed debug values in 'real-time'. :)

screenshot.jpg
Source, oricutron, output, hex-editor.
Test_Windows_Pipes.zip
Test executable and source.
(15.07 KiB) Downloaded 124 times

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Godzil » Sun Jul 17, 2016 11:38 pm

iss wrote:Nice demo. It's really very fun how MCP40 changes ink pens.
Why not to add some printer music like this one.... ;)
That can't be done this way without replacing the printer electronics

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by ibisum » Tue Jul 19, 2016 10:58 am

Pushes my nostalgia button up to 11, very nice to see the old MCP printing away, and amazing how visceral the sound of the pen-change mechanism is to me, even today ..

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Steve M » Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:30 pm

Where did you find the pens etc Dbug ?

I have a load of spares but I think many will be dried up now.

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Steve M » Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:41 pm

If you use the sideways writing you can have an 80 column printer rather than a 40 column one :)

(One of the first Oric fan user group neswletters was one like that. )

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Dbug » Wed Jul 05, 2017 6:25 pm

I got the small replacement plastic gears and the pens from http://www.best-electronics-ca.com
It's a very manual process (it's basically a one man shop) but they can be trusted :)
Tusen takk for your E-Mail dated 06-12-16 Mickael.

Q. I recently bought an Oric MCP-40 printer, which happens to be more or
less the same at the Atari 1020 (4 colors plotter with a small roll of
paper), but as usual it's pretty much impossible to find the pens and
the paper that works well for the machine, and apparently you happen to
have some :)

A. No problem Mickael the new Atari 1020 Color and Black pen sets are in stock.
But before you place an order for them Michael, you might want to 1st check something
on your Oric printer. The Alps 40 column printer mechs used in the Atari 1020 and Commodore
1520 plotters have almost 100% failure rate.

The very very small pinion gears split on the motor shaft that drives the rubber platen and
the motor that drives printer pen holder back and forth almost 100% fail. You can test for this problem by putting your
thumb on the rubber platen and moving it up and down. If you feed a clicking sound and
feel then the small pinion gear is split. With no power on the printer do the same test
on the 4 pen holder. Move it side to side, if again you hear a clicking sound, then
that pinion gear is also split. You can also verify this problem by also taking apart
the Oric printer and check this small gears. We do have new replacement pinion
gears in stock

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by NightBird » Wed Jul 05, 2017 7:00 pm

Hi,

Please also read:
- To repair MCP-40 small gears: CEO-MAG #308 Dec. 2015, pp. 4-7.
- For pens: CEO-MAG #311 Mar. 2016, pp. 4-6.

Thierry

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Steve M » Thu Jul 06, 2017 2:00 pm

Thanks.

I have a few Atmos MCP40s in need or a bit of repair. Never had time to check out what they need exactly.

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Steve M » Thu Jul 06, 2017 2:37 pm

Interesting articles Thierry.

I've found with some pens you can use surgical spirit to get the ink flowing again. (I can't remember whether I've tried this with MCP40 pens - but I have used it on other types of pen.)

The MCP40 pens are so small you would need a tiny amount. Might be worth a try(?)

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Godzil » Sun Jul 16, 2017 2:06 pm

Dbug wrote:
Wed Jul 05, 2017 6:25 pm
I got the small replacement plastic gears and the pens from http://www.best-electronics-ca.com
Great!

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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Steve M » Mon Aug 07, 2017 12:16 pm


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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Steve M » Tue Aug 08, 2017 12:32 pm


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Re: Line Feed - Oric MCP40 demo at Solskogen

Post by Dbug » Tue Aug 08, 2017 1:36 pm

Steve M wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 12:32 pm
Found another source of pens here.
https://www.thefuturewas8bit.com/shop/a ... -1020.html
There's a 'OUT OF STOCK' gray text under 'PLOTTER PENS COMMODORE 1520 - ORIC PCP40 TANDY CGP-115 ATARI 1020'

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