Email discussion of Incredible Hulk #500 on November, 30, 2008 by b8F2c9


									Email discussion of Incredible Hulk #500 on November, 30, 2008

Participants:    Chris Hibler, Jim Palson, Mark Clayton, Steve Charland

Emails read from bottom to top


Ahem...Jay...I've got that one.
I'll pester the living @#$% out of Steve until he does it. You have enough to do...this one's on
me...and I'm going to enjoy it. :-)



That should be interesting, I look forward to looking it up in the database. Thanks for all that you
do for everyone Jay. Now if I can just get around to documenting that SS/EM test version (before
System 1) of Solar City I have. You'll have to keep bugging me (Jay) or I will forget. -S


I am NOT the photographer of the three pictures that I emailed earlier.
They were taken by the people that I bought the game from some years
ago. I will be taking more pictures of the inside, so the first two
pictures will be superceded by new pics from me that I'll submit to
the IPDB. After I get a chance to look at my boards more carefully,
I'll be able to make a more definitive statement about what's in there.



Hi All,

Thank you for the interesting discussion.

Chris, I think I know what I need to say now, in the listing.

Mark, are you the photographer of your three pictures? If yes, can I show them on the ipdb? You
will have to tell me if you want photo credit as that is not automatic, for privacy's sake. :)

The best way for me to reproduce the information presented here is to, well, reproduce this
discussion ver batim as a file attachment in the listing. I will remove email addresses where they



You're right Chris, now that there are serial numbers involved, there may be more than originally
thought to exist. COOL! I'll see what I can do about getting what I have scanned, does anyone
need a copy of the test piece letter?



You're right...this is fun.
Or, we might be drivning poor Jay crazy... :-)

Thanks for the pictures Steve.
I think we need a really good scan of that test piece letter for the IPDB. That's pretty cool.

Interesting that your original MPU has the serial number K1442S on it. Since my boards have the
serial number K1447S on them, and assuming that serial numbers ran sequentially with no gaps,
that means that there were at least 6 prototype System 80 Hulks built. The search is on!

Take care all,
Chris Hibler


Hi all,
  This is fun. I'll add some more pictures to the pile, if someone wants to post them to the
database, I'm okay with that.
Picture A; shows the original CPU board with sticker and custom burned U2/3.
Picture B; shows how bad the alkaline damage is to the original CPU board, I decided not to
repair that mess and keep the board as it was.
Picture C; shows the original Z36 trace error that was corrected with a jumper during board
production (which everyone has seen ... I'm sure). Also a screen error for Q1 was corrected on
the back side of the board. The component side was correct at the start. I'm guessing that the
Z36 error was caught after the first large board run was completed and it was cheaper for
Rockwell to correct it with the jumper than to make another screen and run the boards again and
eat the cost of the first boards. Someones head probably rolled when that was caught given the
importance of getting away from System 1's bad reputation.
  The driver, power supply & sound boards have all been replaced on my game so there's
nothing I have to document. Only the ROM's in my game are correct. Chris, I noticed that the
A2J3 connector is the same in my Hulk. Also included is a picture of the manual cover. If anyone
needs a copy, please let me know. same with the test piece doc pic.




I will look at the connectors and the other matters discussed here
and let you know where my game stands. If there's still a need to
archive the ROMs, let me know and I can do that as well. My game was
fully working the last time it was set up so all the ROMs should be OK.
George has never mentioned to me that he has a Sys 80 Hulk. His email
address is if anyone wants to ask him.

Your driver board may be a true prototype run, since it's missing
the green solder mask. This may have been done during prototyping
to save money or time. I'll check the serial number tags on mine
to see if they match the game.



Thanks for the pics Mark.

It's difficult to tell from the backbox photo, but it appears that all of the connectors on your game
are regular crimp pin connectors as used on System 1 games vice the IDC style used on System
80 games. The Hulk I have here is the same way; no IDC connectors.

Jim is right about the sticker on the sound board. Good catch Jim. That must have been put there
later by a repair agent. I did just compare my board with two other sound boards I have. It is
trace-for-trace identical to my other two sound boards. However, the small cap above the 2 DIP
switches toward the outside of the board is missing on this board. There are solder pads, but no
cap. And, the 6530 is socketed, but that was a repair job.

While discussing the pictures with Steve Charland this morning, he noted that the driver board
traces are different from production driver boards. That is, the traces are laid out differently. Since
the board also doesn't have the green "trace insulation" layer on it, one of the transistors is
"insulated" from the traces with a piece of cardstock.

If you get a chance Mark, I'd really like to see closeups of the circuit cards in your game to
compare the differences. Same to you Steve. Dig that game out. :-)

I do have a full set of the documentation for the game, including the "blue prints" that Jim filed
with Jay and a "game manual" too, which contains additional schematics.'s suspected that George Riley might own the 4th prototype. Can anyone confirm/refute

Take care guys.
Chris Hibler


Hey guys:

Yes, I have an original System 80 Hulk. I've attached a couple pictures
of the backbox that were taken by the guys that sold it to me. The game
was working then, so this is a functional configuration shown in the
photos. I can take better pics if anyone here is interested. It sure
looks like a System 1 head, and definitely nothing like a Spider Man head.


Hi Jay,

I'll just add my two cents, FWIW.

1. From the limited pics I have seen of this game, I cannot confirm this is a System 1 backbox.
However, from the pics attached to the e-mail CC'ed to me, it appears similar if not the same,
less the harness and boardset.

2. The System 80 platform was referred to as System 2 / System II by the folks at Gottlieb who
directly worked on it. Please see my interview with John Buras, who repeatedly calls System 80,
System 2 - I agree with Chris on all counts
regarding the construction and color used on the driver board in the pic supplied. It is noteworthy
that the board is marked "K", which was the letter representing Hulk during the Sys1 era, followed
by the serial number, and the letter "S". The "S" denotes sample.

3. The CPU and sound board appear to run-of-the-mill Sys80 production boards. However, I
have to disagree with Chris on the sound board. This board was no longer used in games in
1984. I believe that dated sticker on the board in the pic is from a PCB repair house.

Some other things to note. The design and layout of the power supply is different from any Sys80
/ 80A power supply I have ever seen. In addition to the two test points being mislabeled as Chris
pointed out, the bottom right resistor along with the diode to the left of it and the associated solder
"turrets" were not used on production boards. The "turrets" were used on production boards, but
not at that position of the board, as production boards have nothing in that particular location. I
also notice that the 12v and 5v red LEDs on the board are no labeled with their voltage
representations like production boards were.


Jim Palson

"Gotta be a Gott1ieb!"

Chris Hibler wrote:

          Hi Jay,

          All good questions.

          Let's see if I can answer them, interspersed below...

          BTW, I'm an EM guy too. I just love working on EMs. But, I love the SS stuff too..

          I'm cc'ing Mark Clayton, Steve Charland and Jim Palson on this note. Perhaps
          they can also review for accuracy and/or add more information.

          Mark is said to own one of these prototype Hulks.

          Steve definitely owns one.
Jim Palson supplied the images of the prototype schematics to the IPDB.

Note that I also changed the original notes that read " Reportedly,   there are two
known examples held by collectors."

Steve Charland and I have discussed this (along with Dan Beck, another System
80 guy on RGP) and our conjecture is that there are 4 of them in existence and
they are owned by...

1. Steve Charland (definite)

2. Chad Keller (definite)

3. Mark Claytone (not sure)

4. unknown owner

I applaud your initiative in making the IPDB as accurate as possible. Not a day
goes by that I don't consult the IPDB so I'm trying to give a little back here by
making a contribution.

PS - I named the picture of the bridge rectifiers "Green Bridges" because I
thought having green colored bridge rectifiers in Hulk, which is generally a green
themed game, was appropriate. :-)

Take care Jay,

Chris Hibler

From: Jay St@fford
Sent: Sunday, November 30, 2008 3:29 AM
To: chibler@~~~~~~~~
Subject: Regarding Your Submission: Gottlieb "The Incredible Hulk" Model

Nov 30, 2008

Hi Chris,

I have some questions on your recent info about the System 80 Incredible Hulk.
You wrote:

The inside of the backbox appears to be a standard System 1 backbox. The
power supply is mounted on "standoffs" that connect it electrically to the
backbox grounding.The prototype Driver Board pictured has a sticker in
the upper right corner with "System II" hand written on it.Diagnostics via
the coin door test switch are identical to later System 80 diagnostics.

1) In what respects does the inside of the backbox appear to be a standard
Sytem 1 backbox? The construction of the wood? The placement of the
components? Or was your next statement about the power supply mountings
meant to be that explanation? If yes, then how would you have expected the
mountings to have been for a System 80 such that what you saw here could
mislead? You see, I need to show contrast so even EM guys like me can get it.

All of the System 1 backboxes (Cleopatra to Torch) featured a metal ground
plane that covered the entire back of the backbox. The circuit cards were
mounted to the metal ground plane, but only the power supply was physically
connected to the ground plane via it's heat sink. The other circuit cards were
placed on plastic standoffs for both System 1 and System 80 implementations.

This prototype Hulk used what would become the System 80 power supply. It
was physically connected to the ground plane via metal standoffs. System 80
backboxes did not feature this ground plane. It was not a part of the design.
System 80 circuit cards were generally mounted on the back of the "swing out"
lamp board insert panel.

It's interesting to note that the silkscreen for this prototype power supply is
mislabeld in two places. Test point 1 should be labeled 60V vice 5.4V. Test point
2 should be labeled 42V vice 37V.

You can also see in the pictures that some of the large resistors (R1 for instance)
are mounted in such a way as to not accomodate thermal expansion, which
would eventually lead to cold solder joints or component failure. The design was
corrected in production system 80 power supplies. Side note...this power supply
still actually worked and provided the correct System 80 voltages.

2) You captioned a picture as Driver Board System 80 Prototype yet you state
above that they driver board itself is marked "System II". How can both
identifications be true? Is the driver board mis-labeled, or shall I change your
picture caption so it does not inadvertently suggest the driver board is System

The driver board is a System 80 prototype driver board. The only difference I
could see in it is that Gottlieb used different form factor capacitors (radial instead
of axial) and the PCB is light beige instead of the traditional green. At the time,
Gottlieb must have been debating what to name the new system. System II was
at least a candidate as documentation pops up from time to time with references
to System II. Off topic here but there have also been references to system 2.5.

My suspicion is that the sticker with "System II" was placed on the board at the
factory while the official name of the successor to System 1 was still in flux.

You also submitted two images with the captions of MPU (Not Original) and
Sound Card (Not Original).

3 ) Why are these two cards not original? Where are the originals? Why did the
originals not work or have to be replaced? Where did you get them? Are they
System 80 cards taken from later games?

I captioned these "not original" because they are obviously later production
PCBs. The sound card has a factory sticker on it dated August 1984, which is
about 5 years after this game was built. The MPU is also a later production MPU
with the part number of those later production MPUs. So yes, the sound and
MPU cards must have been taken from later System 80 games.

I wish I knew where the original sound and MPU cards were. The game was
purchased as it is today (with the "not original" cards in it) and the prior owner
had no knowledge of what happened to the original sound and MPU cards. By
stating "Not Original" my intention was to point out that those two cards are not
prototype cards.

I can only assume that the original sound and MPU cards failed in some way and
had to be replaced. There is a hint of alkaline damage in the backbox. Perhaps
the original MPU's battery died and began to leak alkaline as happens with so
many MPUs of that era.

Thank you!


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