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Vintage Computers Any vintage computer systems, calculators, video games etc., but with an emphasis on 1980s and earlier equipment.

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Old 1st Dec 2019, 1:27 am   #1
gridrunner
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Default Issue with an old Star LC-10 dot matrix printer

Hi everyone,

I have an old Star LC-10 printer I'd like to use with my equally old Amiga 500. It was a workhorse printer for me back in the day. This particular unit I haven't powered on before. When I do apply power, the print head moves a few inches to the right and returns and then the printer makes a loud beep. The power light flashes rapidly orange continuously. If I switch the printer off and advance the head all the way to the right, it will return to the start position when powered on but the fault repeats.
I doubt it's been used in a long while but I did fit a new ribbon.

any help would be appreciated!
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Old 1st Dec 2019, 12:18 pm   #2
hysteresis
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Default Re: Issue with an old Star LC-10 dot matrix printer

The "Repair by Replacement of Parts" section of the Technical Manual appears to provide a useful troubleshooting guide. For example, the flowchart on Page -61- covers some standard checks: Power rails (24V and 5V), processor /RESET line, crystal waveform and ROM /OE line.
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Old 1st Dec 2019, 12:21 pm   #3
Refugee
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Default Re: Issue with an old Star LC-10 dot matrix printer

I would re-seat any socketed chips before going far with it.
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Old 1st Dec 2019, 5:46 pm   #4
G6Tanuki
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Default Re: Issue with an old Star LC-10 dot matrix printer

The "print-head-moves to right, moves back to the left" thing is a standard initialisation behaviour for many printers - it's setting a left-hand 'zero' position and checking that whatever mechanism is used to determine print-head-position [probably an optical-chopper wheel for the relative/incremental steps, and a diode/phototransistor for the absolute-left-hand-extreme] is working.

Given that you say you've not had this printer working before, I'd check for accumulated crud [fibres from paper, spiders-webs, general dust] in the printhead position-sensors. A quick blast with a compresed-aor-duster might help.
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Old 1st Dec 2019, 8:46 pm   #5
gridrunner
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Default Re: Issue with an old Star LC-10 dot matrix printer

Thanks for the advice guys and thanks for the link to the service manual. The motors seem to work for the carriage and the paper advance, and the panel select indicators operate and so I think you're right, it could be the head. I'll give it a clean and see what happens.
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Old 1st Dec 2019, 11:13 pm   #6
wave solder
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Default Re: Issue with an old Star LC-10 dot matrix printer

The printer is just telling you it is out of paper.
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Old 2nd Dec 2019, 10:55 pm   #7
gridrunner
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Default Re: Issue with an old Star LC-10 dot matrix printer

wow, that's embarrassing. It works a treat
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