Atari Tempest Restoration 1

I picked this Tempest Cabaret up some time ago from a chap in Oxford over here in the UK.

Tempests are pretty rare on this side of the pond, and the cabaret version like this one especially so, so I was delighted to have found this one for sale on ebay.

I bought it almost blind – just a few pictures to go by. It was in the guy’s garage. Turns out it had a really easy life. only 3000 credits on the counter, and it had been owned by a programmer who played it in his office and more recently in his home. He said the monitor had only recently gone but it did play blind supposedly. My biggest concern was that it had been stored in a garage with no heating.

After getting it home and looking at what I had, it turns out it was in really nice shape – matching serial numbers across all parts. There was no water damage, everything solid. The wood laminate sides had minimal damage too – just a few scuffs here and there.




The only real “damage” was the top vinyl had been torn and the grill was missing from the top. A relatively simple repair – but given that Tempests tend to generate a lot of heat, I’m thinking that just a repair of the laminate would be the best way to go. Ventilation is key.


As for the insides, well this is typical of what you can expect from a 30 year old machine that’s never been cleaned. No suprises here. For the most part, this will all just require a good deep clean. More on that later.


Some signs of rust too. But we can sort that out.


So an early start with a bucket of hot soapy water produced this!



But it got the sides looking much better:


So a good start, but lots more to do. The monitor wasn’t working, and we still need to strip the cab down and deep clean everything. Do check out part 2 for more on this cab.


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