The Dumb Terminal lets you put it all together. (Apr, 1978)

The Dumb Terminal lets you put it all together.

With the new, lower-priced Dumb Terminal™ Kit, that is. Pick one up and escape, once and for all, the headaches of scavenged teletypes and jury-rigged TV sets. With just a little time and aptitude, you can have a live and working Dumb Terminal right in your own home, garage, or business One that lets you get it all out of your system — or into it.

Forget the cheap imitations, with their overblown price tags and interminable lists of options. With the Kit, you can build yourself the same, old basic Dumb Terminal that’s been selling over 1500 units a month. With basic, sensible features like a bright 12″ diagonal screen. Fifty-nine data entry keys. 1920 characters displayed in 24 rows of 80 letters. Plus 33 positive action switches that let you activate functions like 1 of 11 different baud rates, an RS232C interface, or a 20mA current-loop. And more Not bad for Dumb All you need, besides the Kit, is some initiative, and a few basic tools — a good soldering iron, wire cutters, needle-nose pliers, and one or two trusty screwdrivers. The Dumb Terminal Kit provides you with everything else. Including an attractive cabinet, CRT screen, keyboard, PC board, and all essential electronic components. Naturally, you also get illustrated, step-by-step assembly instructions, not to mention an easy-to-understand operator’s manual.

So, if you’d like more input on the Dumb Terminal Kit, just fill out the coupon and we’ll send you complete, free information.

Oh, and by the way, just by sending in the coupon, you will be made a charter member of the Dumb Terminal Fan Club. A select organization that will send you your own nifty Dumb Terminal Fan Club Kit, containing: an official certificate of membership; an autographed photo of the Dumb Terminal himself, and a bona fide membership card to prove irrefutably you’re “One of Us” (Sorry, limit one kit per person.) And, if you include a trifling $6.00, you can have your very own Dumb Terminal T-shirt. (No limit at all on these.) Simply mail the coupon and get the whole assortment. And find out why members of the numb Terminal Fan Club are some of the smartest people around.

Dumb Terminal.
Fun Club.

  1. Andrew L. Ayers says: June 13, 20119:38 am

    Hmm – strange. You have to make the checks out to LeAnce & Reiser – not Lear Siegler, Inc (LSI)? Would I be showing my geekiness by saying I would -still- love to own a “Dumb Terminal” (even better, a kit to put together would be awesome). Alas, I’ll have to make-do with my amber VT-100 (then again, if I did ever find an unassembled Dumb Terminal kit from somebody’s attic, I would be -stupid- to assemble it).

  2. Andrew L. Ayers says: June 13, 20119:44 am

    Hmm – just did some looking – I guess the terminal was called the ADM-3A; it was originally sold as a complete terminal, then later as a kit (for $995.00 – in 1978!). Probably rarer than hen’s teeth to find nowadays (but it would sure look nice next to my Altair)…sigh.

  3. Toronto says: June 13, 201110:42 am

    I have one – or at least the shell of one – at home. The CRT went kablooie in it in about 1984, so it was repurposed as part of a Halloween costume at first, then as a cat bed.

    The shell alone is over 10 pounds.

    Alas, I never got the t-shirt.

  4. Casandro says: June 13, 201111:52 am

    Dumb Terminal fan club. What a great name.

  5. Andrew L. Ayers says: June 13, 20113:49 pm

    @Toronto: Does the shell still have the keyboard (or did you keep it) – and would you be willing to sell it? Send me an email via my website if you want…

  6. Toronto says: June 13, 20114:03 pm

    Andrew: The shell has the keyboard, but if I recall it was part of the main board which was sliced in half. But it’s not for sale – it’s in active use by one of the cats.

  7. Andrew L. Ayers says: June 13, 20118:57 pm

    @Toronto: If you ever want to sell it, look me up…

  8. GaryM says: June 14, 20113:57 am

    Andrew L. Ayers: According to Wikipedia (…), the ADM-3A complete terminal came first, and then was available as a kit later. This “fan club” sounds like an attempt to ride on its coattails rather than a legitimate operation.

  9. Charlene says: June 14, 201110:08 am

    Whoever wrote this ad copy belonged to the Edward Gibbon Comma Appreciation Society.

  10. Toronto says: June 14, 201110:37 am

    There seems to be a shortage of commas in today’s writing. I suspect overuse of the comma, dating back to the 1970s, as the root cause.

  11. Stephen Edwards says: May 22, 20123:51 pm

    I ran across a modern “dumb terminal” kit a while ago:


    I can’t vouch for its quality, and it’s definitely BYOCRT, but it’s intriguing.

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