iBook G3 eBay gamble that turned into something interesting

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by LightBulbFun, Jul 7, 2017.

  1. LightBulbFun, Jul 7, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2017

    LightBulbFun macrumors 6502a

    LightBulbFun

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2013
    Location:
    London UK
    #1
    so as im sure most of you guys know by now I have been doing a few PowerPC CPU swaps on some Macs i own, now after i had done those I wanted to do a clamshell iBook G3 but i did not own such a machine so i set out to find one to modify :)

    after a bit of searching on eBay i came across this listing: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/182614056493

    now at first it was not at the price you see it at, at first it was at about £60 plus the £8.95 shipping, this was out of my budget especially for a to me at the time unknown condition machine, but i still kept an eye on it and slowly slowly it dropped in price while gaining more and more people watching it, at one point it hit £30+8.95 shipping so i decided to jump on it, i know that theres not much to go wrong with these iBooks so i had a good feeling that it worked fine and even if it did not work i would not lose out on that much in the scheme of things plus i would have a base i could always get a new logic board for.

    now after a few days it arrived and i promptly unpacked it, as i kind of expected plugging in the charger and pressing the on button it fired right up and booted up into an install of Mac OS 9.0.4 :D but this is where it gets interesting, i had noticed that the machine was in very nice condition (esp on the inside, palm rest keyboard trackpad etc) and that the Mac OS 9.0.4 install on it was very clean of any user data. and the machines spec was bone stock (just the 64MB of built in ram and 6GB HDD)

    so I began to dig deeper and much to my surprise I discovered the battery only had 9 cycles on it! now the battery looks original to to me (it is an original Apple brand battery) and if the batteries serial number follows the same rules as mac serial numbers the battery was made 1 week before the machine it self was, this was a very interesting find.

    so still digging deeper i noted that the hard drive seemed to be original (6GB Toshiba disk, that was known to ship with these systems) so I decided to look up the Power on hours in its smart data and much to my surprise the hard drive has (at the time of writing this post) Only 45H of use! 45!! overall given the very minimal usage the Battery and HDD has had

    this iBook G3 is practically brand new! o_O:eek:

    overall i am very chuffed with the machine and was deffo a gamble that paid off well, the only issue now is seeing how this thing is practically brand new I dont want to modify it any way (only things iv done atm is add a 512MB ram stick, update to the last boot rom, and install 10.4.11) so im back to square 1 of my original goal of finding an iBook G3 clamshell (non FW) to fit a G4 to... :p

    Just figured id document this particular find as its not every day you come across a practically brand new iBook G3 clamshell :D

    now as they say pictures or it did not happen:
    (the outside is a bit scuffed here and there from nearly 17 years of storage... it looks like this machine was made 11th of July 2000 so its going to be 17 years old in a few days and hardly used...) but the inside of the machine is VERY clean the display keyboard trackpad palm rests etc are all nice and clean as one would expect from an unused product i guess

    [​IMG]

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    [​IMG]

    (Disk utility is not reporting the drive as failing yet. SMART utility can be a bit trigger happy to label the disk as failing) (pics should be working now :) ) edit: just noticed this post is my 733(Mhz) post! :D
     
  2. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #2
    Who knew?!

    If it's too perfect he won't FrankenMac it!

    TIL.

    :)
     
  3. KawaiiAurora macrumors 6502

    KawaiiAurora

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2016
    Location:
    Europa
    #3
    I think that it would be a sin to mess up that nice iBook.. You can find a beaten up one later :)
     
  4. CooperBox, Jul 8, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2017

    CooperBox macrumors 6502a

    CooperBox

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    France - between Ricard & Absinthe
    #4
    I note that it's a PowerBook2.1, and appreciate that you were after a clamshell on a small budget which makes sense.
    For the modding and subsequent testing that you plan, would a PowerBook2.2 (with firewire) make things a little easier - especially for testing?
    One reason I'm asking is, like yourself I don't like to see a near mint example of any Mac significantly altered as it detracts from it's obvious collectability feature.
    --- Post Merged, Jul 8, 2017 ---
    Any reason why you are particularly after an "iBook G3 clamshell (non FW)"
     
  5. Daniël Oosterhuis macrumors 6502a

    Daniël Oosterhuis

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2016
    Location:
    On an MR break
    #5
    The problem with the FireWire models is that they use the IBM 750CX processor, which is drastically different from the regular Motorola and IBM 750 processors found in the non-FW Clamshells. What @LightBulbFun wants to do is replace the 750 processor with a 7410 processor to create a Clamshell G4 (this has been done for the very first time by someone on 68kMLA just a few months ago). The 750CX is not pin compatible with the 7410 unlike the normal 750.
     
  6. LightBulbFun thread starter macrumors 6502a

    LightBulbFun

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2013
    Location:
    London UK
    #6
    indeed :) Do note of course i still went digging deep in Open Firmware on it (both before and after updating the boot rom, Figured out how to update the boot rom without needing an OS) Found some interesting stuff in OpenFirmware (quite a few phantom devices)

    As I said in my original post, on account of how nice/rare this example is i most likely will not be modding it :)

    as @Daniël Oosterhuis stated a PowerBook2,2 is a 750CX based machine and the 750CX has a different pinout then the, 750/755/PPC750L/7400/7410/IBM G4 which are all pin compatible and (relatively) interchangeable (the PowerBook2,1 using the PPC750L)

    so the hunt continues :) in the mean time ill play around with software on this iBook :)
     
  7. CooperBox macrumors 6502a

    CooperBox

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    France - between Ricard & Absinthe
    #7
    @LightBulbFun,
    I have a blueberry I can donate for your project. Pls check your mail.
     
  8. max¥¥ macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    Location:
    Over there....
    #8
    Very nice catch there :)

    Only thing I would do with it is replace that hdd as it will fail compleatly sooner or later (or as I would tell customer at work those 6 sectors are proabley the tip of the iceberg )

    One day I need to get around to doing the G4 mod on my clamshell, even after I have done it a few times for other people I still haven't got around to doing it on my iBook... Even though a have a tray of those 7410's :)

    (Btw, I usually go by the name max1zzz online :) )
     
  9. LightBulbFun thread starter macrumors 6502a

    LightBulbFun

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2013
    Location:
    London UK
    #9
    Awesome to see you on here :) (im sure if you contact the mods they will happily change your user name if you want it so)

    Yeah, I have had plenty of hard drives die on me Ill prolly leave this HDD in for as long as i can, ATM its fine as long as i dont "push" data into the bad sectors (Looking at you iBook G4 with well over 300 bad sectors and counting :) ) if i do that then stuff starts to give errors (OS X gives me a DiskIO error when that happens) and you can hear the Hard drive repeatedly trying to seek a specific spot on the platter(s?) if/when I do replace the Hard disk ill prolly look down the route of an mSATA SSD if any of my macs deserve one its this really nice clamshell or my DLSD :)

    a tray of 7410s eh? so you got 44 7410s now? :D

    I still have the 2 that as we talked about, i have been saving the 533Mhz specify for something like a clamshell (granted prolly not clocked up that high given the heat issues others clamshells have at that speed), and ill prolly use the other 500Mhz one on a Lombard (from my investigations the Lombard uses a PPC750L so should take a 7410 nicely and its a Mac we have not done yet)
     
  10. MysticCow macrumors 6502a

    MysticCow

    Joined:
    May 27, 2013

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