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I cannot get my imagewritter II to print from my macintosh se

1593 Views 23 Replies Latest reply: Oct 20, 2012 11:50 AM by Appaloosa mac man RSS
  • John Galt Level 7 Level 7 (33,055 points)

    Wolfemanjack wrote:


    ... Also, I happen to have an Apple IIe platinum. Would by chance I be able to test the printers capacity to print by getting a cable to go from the Super serial card inside the Apple IIe with out having to find a driver for the Apple IIe?


    You're in luck - I omitted this reference because it requires a IIe and I assumed you did not have one.


    Archived - ImageWriter Hardware Communication Problems

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  • Matt Broughton Level 5 Level 5 (4,905 points)

    That article shows the DIP switch settings for the ImageWriter not the ImageWriter II but otherwise would be great for testing on the Apple IIe.  I found the ImageWriter II DIP switch settings in a the ImageWriter II Quick Reference Card publication.


    While we are talking DIP switch settings, do you have a recommendation for the baud rate?  The Mac package for the ImageWriter uses 9600 baud except for the ImageWriter LQ.

  • John Galt Level 7 Level 7 (33,055 points)

    That's a nice find!!


    Screen Shot 2012-10-19 at 4.03.31 PM.png


    "open" = off - up - away from you - toward the platen


    The default baud rate setting was 9600 so they should both be "down" unless someone messed with them.


    The PDF of its manual has the columns misaligned so here it is in the event ASC decides to erase pictures one day:



    baud rate



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  • Matt Broughton Level 5 Level 5 (4,905 points)

    John Galt wrote:


    The PDF of its manual has the columns misaligned so here it is in the event ASC decides to erase pictures one day:



    That is the text only manual.  You may prefer this manual.


    You may want to "back walk" from that link.  Better yet, start here and go forward to explore. It looks like there are quite a few resources on that site that might not available elsewhere.  Remember when we could browse Apple's ftp sites to find what we needed?

  • Matt Broughton Level 5 Level 5 (4,905 points)

    I'll let the experts give the final word, but I think some of those switch settings may need changing.



    I looked in my Imagewriter II and  the dip switch settings were all open on sw-1 except for sw-1-6.


    This looks/sounds right.


    On SW-2 all the switches were open except for 3,5,6.


    I believe the default settings should be

    1 Closed

    2 Closed

    3 Open

    4 Open

    5 and 6 Closed and not for use by the user.


    See pages 69 and 70 in this manual.


    From what I can tell, you have the baud rate set at 300 rather than the default 9600.  I think the more likely culprit is SW2-3.  I thinbk that should be closed.  Having it open corresponds to using the XON/XOFF Protocol rather than the Hardware Handshake Protocol.

  • John Galt Level 7 Level 7 (33,055 points)

    Matt is right about the baud rate and XON/XOFF settings. Set them as he wrote, which are also the IW's default settings:




    Screen Shot 2012-10-19 at 11.38.10 PM.png


    (copied from Matt's link) 


    Now that they are set correctly, forget about them and concentrate on getting the software to work. I am wondering if there is something missing related to printing or the Chooser, but if you have the Chooser at all that should be OK.


    One more quick thing to check - in your System Folder, you must have a file named ImageWriter. That's pretty much all there was to it in those days.


    Remember on these early floppy disk based systems print jobs were not "spooled" - not written to a file at all - you watched and waited as the document was printing since you could do nothing else.


    Wolfemanjack wrote:


    .. I'm thinking that when I click on the phone icon under "Imagewriter" that it should do something instead of just staying lit up, shouldn't it give the name of the hooked up printers?


    Nope, it does nothing else. Only with AppleTalk active would it subsequently ask you to choose an AppleTalk printer on the network. Without an AppleTalk card the ImageWriter is a dumb device, not capable of communicating to the Mac (except for very rudimentary responses).


    What you are seeing is normal... except you should click the printer icon, not the "phone" or modem icon.


    Like this:




    The Mac does not care which is which and can print to either one, but if your printer is connected to the modem port (for some reason) then you would want to choose the modem icon. The ports are completely identical. You are simply selecting which port you would like to use for printing.


    Let me know if you still can't print and at what point you think you are getting stuck.

    MacBooks  iMacs  iPods  AirPorts, OS X Mountain Lion,  27 years Apple!
  • Appaloosa mac man Level 5 Level 5 (4,300 points)

    Absolutely.  Our first Apple computer was a IIc,  Our second printer was a white Imagewriter II with a sheet feeder.  They will talk to each other.


    When selecting cables, be sure to use a printer cable instead of a modem cable.  The modem cable has a pin position swap for send and receieve.  Because the printer does not talk back, it only receives data.  Given more time, I could probably dig up the pinout for the two cables and you can make your own or adapt one.

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