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%% GREAT STORIES OF AMIGA ABUSE                          by Hans Guijt %%
%%                                %%

                        GREAT STORIES OF AMIGA ABUSE

                          -- amazing recovery! --

A few weeks ago I asked for stories about amiga's that battled on despite
terrible abuse. My thanks to all the people that answered, even the ones
with the somewhat unlikely stories! I hope I got the right names over the
right stories, my apologies if I got it wrong. A short summary of abuse
that *didn't* lead to machine fatality:

LIQUIDS poured over computer:      *     OBJECTS dropped on computer:
Black Cherry yoghurt               *     Computer owner
Beer (twice)                       *     HUGE speaker (twice)
Red wine                           *     Monitor
Rain (twice)                       *
Cat piss                           *
Milk                               *
Tea (twice)                        *     OTHER stuff done to computer:
Hot chocolate                      *
Shampoo                            *     Lightning strike (twice)
Mello Yello                        *     Dropped
Lighter fluid (burning)            *
Coke                               *

Right, now let's have the full stories. Over to you guys:

David James Brockley writes:

>Black Cherry yoghurt over the keyboard of an A500 whilst powered up. 
>Didn`t do any damage, didn`t even make the keyboard go sticky after I 
>cleaned it out.
>Pint of beer over an A1200. Politely crashed the program that was running
>with an 'Overflow error'. Now look me in the eye and say the Ami doesn`t
>have a sense of humor!

David Higginsons story is about a C64:

>Managed to get a glass of red wine through the innards of my 64. Never 
>even flinched :).

From Kimmo Veijalainen comes another C64 story:

>A friend of mine accidentally poured half a bottle of beer on the C64's
>keyboard while the machine was running. No problem, he tilted the machine
>and the beer came out from one corner. No reboot, no nothing, it worked
>OK and is still functional :-)

mentat@localhost doesn't care about computer casings, it seems:

>You want tragic but heart warming tales of Amiga abuse?  My 500 has been
>drowned, set alight, dropped down stairs, and used as a workbench whilst
>soldering, and the only thing wrong with it is the case is ruined.  (I
>dropped a brazing torch on it, and the case went up in flames.)
>(Sadly, the mouse died after only 4 months, but that's a minor 

A few stories that happened in my own neighbourhood:

>A friend of mine left his Amiga under an open window. While he was gone, 
>it started to rain... After returning, he switched on the computer, but it
>didn't work. He turned it off again, and lifted it off the shelf, causing
>all the water inside to flow out.
>Of course, a wet computer is a bad idea. My friend therefore put it on the
>heater to dry... It works to this day, flawless.
>Another friend used to take his a500 with him in his backpack. One day he
>fell, and landed on his back (on the amiga!). It, too, is still in
>excellent working order.

From David Pryce comes an unlikely story of abuse and recovery:

>Well, I was throwing my A500 around a field like a frizbee when it landed
>on a land mine.  It got blown up into the jet engine of a Boeing 747 and
>the fragmented pieces that came out the back just happened to land back
>into place, fixing themselves into an A500, which now runs three times
>faster than it ever did before.

Are you sure it happened this way, David?

>No, it didn't.  I'm lying again.  Quick, doc, get my pills...

Here you go...   ;-)

David Hoppers machine survived an earthquake (as did David, apparently!):

>The Quake of '89, I was in Palo Alto.  I had a 40 pound stereo speaker
>fall off the wall and directly onto my A500, a four-foot fall.  It was
>powered on, and just kept going.
>I've got a divot out of my Return key to show for it.

Phill Coxon had a problem with his cat:

>A friend of mine came over to check out my new kitten. He happily chased
>the kitten around the house for half an hour. What he didn't realise was
>that at some point the cat had stopped playing and started getting very
>Ended up with the cat cowering on a shelf in the study with complete loss
>of bladder control... right above the computer. :)
>Nothing that a good motherboard rinse, scrub with the toothbrush and a
>decent dry-out didn't fix.

Joel Edward Swans *computer* is fine...

>I had a 1084 monitor fall two feet off the shelf and on to a USRobotics
>dual standard Courier HST.  The top grating was bashed in and broken.
>I turned it on and it still runs fine.
>Unfortunately the monitor tumbled farther to the floor and broke the tube

Kimmo Veijalainen is back with an unlikely story:

>Once my A500 absorbed a lightning bolt :-) and the disk currently in df0:
>got an unrecoverable read/write error. Nothing else happened.

One would expect the machine to be a smoking mess... How did the lightning
bolt get close enough to your a500 anyway?

Another lightning strike comes from William Silvey:

>Well, Ok... lemme think... Right, my A500 took a lightning hit and all it
>did was kill the 3rd party modem connected... then one day last spring I
>saw that my A1200 was thirsty, so I gave it a drink of milk.  The 500 
>ticks on at a friend's house, the 1200 sits before me now, unscathed 
>[well, I did clean it out]

Clemens Zauner has another flood story:

>My friend and me we are developing a 24Bit Image proc. and while doing 
>this we're drinking lots of tea. I'm using an A500 & an A4000. Yes, one 
>evening I went to fill my cup with hot tea, the full can slipped off my 
>hands - nearly 1 liter of _very_ hot tea flooded my A500 (powered on, 
>as usual).

>It survived ! - need some drying, but it' still working _now_.

Pascal Eeftinck tells about a machine that DIDN'T survive:

>I and a couple of friends went to a copy-party somewhere here in Holland.
>At a certain time the police invaded in search of some titus-game. One guy
>grabbed his 500, ran away and tripped over a chair. One of these friends
>still has his escape-key ...
>(Oh, and I poored some coke over one of my previous Amiga's too, cleaned 
>it out, never had problems with it.)

Alex Amsel says:

>My Amiga 500 was rained on (dried it with a hair drier), dropped several
>times, had some strange tea poured over it while on ( I turned it off
>quick!), and it all still works ok. It was one of the 1st A500`s and the
>only thing wrong is the disc drive, but it has been crap from the start
>but i never bothered changing it.

prall968@Armstrong.EDU keeps strange company:

>I have a 3 1/2 foot iguana named Chewbacca (chewie for short..)
>Chewie was crawling across my warm monitor when the tip of his tail got
>into the cooling fan on my external drive bay.. He thrashed for a few
>minutes emptying a 2 litre bottle of Mello Yello on my 1000's keyboard
>and into my 500....
>Both work fine.. I just opened up the 500, and paper toweled it dry...

Arno Eigenwillig beats his guitar... ?

>My favourite one: Acoustic guitar beaten up with an old (rev. 3) A500.
>Guitar severely damaged, on the Amiga side only a misadjusted
>battery-backed clock. (Newer A500s have been noticed to be less reliable,
>erm, stable.)

David Carson has a strange friend:

>A friend of mine used to call chat BBSes with his C64. When the chat got
>boring, he'd sometimes squirt lighter fluid on the computer and set it
>alight. So the casing above the keys was all burnt and melted. Never any
>problems. So he took the casing off and squirted the lighter fluid in on
>the circuit board and lit it. Still worked perfectly. So he switched it
>off, randomly wired bits of the circuit board up to other bits, and then
>switched on.
>This time it died. :-)

Are you surprised? Why didn't he just turn the machine off when he got

Gilles Bourdin tells:

>I poured some hot chocolate on my keyboard while the computer was on.
>Nothing actually happened. I switched off the Amiga, unplugged the
>keyboard, took it apart and went to the bathroom where I washed the board
>and the keypad with a little bit of shampoo. Then I dried everything with
>a hairdryer and put it back the way it was.
>Worked fine !

Bruce Baltzer writes:

>A friend was having a party in his room in res and one of his HUGE speakers
>vibrated off the shelf above his A500... CRASH!  Turned a key or two to
>mush, but they still worked!  Another friend's A2000 keyboard swung down
>and smashed his knee, causing a couple of keys to pop off (it was quite a
>swing... :) ). Even after mangling the holes with crazy glue, we still
>managed to get all but one working again.  or was it two, 'cause he got
>crazy glue in the mechanism?  Oh, well, kept tickin'!

Gregg Giles then gets the final word, included here for reasons of humor...

>Summary: we're just kidding - we really like nukes
>>Well, I was just wondering if it's really smart to let the Amiga fall
>>into the hands of a company that might be turned into a missile factory
>>over-night... :) On the other hand, it might be cool to receive nukes
>>equipped with high-powered custom co-processors supporting a
>>multi-tasking guidance system. They would surely be a lot smarter and
>>efficient than the common single-CPU missiles produced elsewhere, huh? :)
>   Then it really could be called the "Omega"; what better name for a
>MIRV nuclear missile than that?
>   Damn the legations! Proliferation must be resumed if the Omega is to
>survive. Imagine the marketing phrases Samsung could use:
>   "Only weenies use megahertz - we've got megatons!"
>   "The engineers of Samsung have an innovative new way to make the
>    phosphors in your computer monitors glow..."
>   "You'll never have to worry about compatibility issues again. Just
>    threaten your neighbors with this baby, and you can write your
>    own damn standards."
>   "Intel may have sold 70,000,000 CPUs in the last ten years, but we
>    can resolve that annoying problem with just one of ours."
>Gee, imagine that. The machine wouldn't have the be tested by the FCC
>anymore - it'd have to be controlled by the DOE. :)