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Ludiks

Posted Thu Apr 01, 2021 3:36 pm

Hi everyone.

A few years ago I bough a A2000 just like I had when I was kid.
Then because of personal reasons I had to step aside from this but before this I installed a gotek drive as primary drive and collected a lot a floppy disks.

A few weeks ago because now I have a chance to get this working again, I noticed mostly every disks had reading issues.

I dissasembled the drive and cleaned it well with alcool (iso) and added grease etc etc I was hoping the wierd noise some floopy were doing would be gone.
But nop.
And I just noticed that the drive is actually damaging the floppy I put in :(
When I slide open a floppy I can see a ring or 2 on the magnetic disk inside the floppy, so I checked several floppy and when I found one without it, I tested it and it got back out with the ring "engraved" after a reading error and bad noise when reading.

I am not sure what could cause this, is the reader head too low, the floppy not in position? I have the drive open but I can't see what could be wrong.
Anyone already experienced this?

I am so mad because I actually ruined at least 20 or more floppy :(

Thank you.

(Yes I have a gotek but I dont like it much...just like using an emulator...I know floppy got damaged with time, but this is not about time :/ or it is but on the drive)

User avatar
Ludiks

Posted Sat Apr 03, 2021 10:11 am

There is a pic to illustrate what I am talking about

Image

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intric8
Seattle, WA, USA
Website

Posted Sat Apr 03, 2021 11:01 am

It does appear that your drive's head is either out of alignment or pretty screwed up. Unless you have another drive you can plunder from, I'd try to source a replacement drive and just swap it out for now.

The cleaner that Jan Beta recommends over alcohol is this stuff. But if the head is damaged it won't really help your situation. That disk damage looks terrible.

If you are really focused on fixing it, I'd take a look at this video, if you haven't seen it already. Good luck!

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Ludiks

Posted Sat Apr 03, 2021 12:11 pm

Thanks for reply!
Yes the head this is really messed up, what is wierd is that it doesnt do this with every disks.

I just found a cable adapter for PC floppy drive on ebay, Iam giving it a try but I would have liked to figure out what is happening here, I am checking at this video thank you, actually I already watched it for cleaning but not the whole video, until now.

User avatar
Ludiks

Posted Sat Apr 03, 2021 2:22 pm

When looking at it I dont see what could be wrong with this head.
According to Wikipedia, head reader on floppy drive are supposed to be in contact with the disk, but how can they scratch it that way ...and doing this awful sound :/
Image

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Robert_MyAmigaShop
USA
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Posted Wed Apr 07, 2021 1:40 am

Hi Ludiks,

Hopefully will not ramble to much. Sorry if I do. :-)

But in my experience, as long as you know the drive is good. Then the scratching might be from dirt (sometimes not visual to the naked eye) on the disks or deteriorating disk media can cause this, or whatever it is. I've had new unopened disks that visually looked super clean and fine, but when inserted into a drive, experienced what your describing. When it happens if you "IMMEDIATELY" eject the disk, then clean the disk media platter with IP (Isopropyl Alcohol), I use 50% to try and not damage the disk media as much as possible, I'm sure a higher concentrate can probably be used, but so far I've stuck with 50% for peace of mind. :-) I've experienced the disk needing to be cleaned sometimes 3-4 times before it'll work 100%.

If whatever film is on the disk gets on the head to much, then I've had to re-clean the heads with IP to restore the drive. But since I've started doing this, have been able to restore 95% of disks that I've ran into. Which awhile back I did around 500+ and have been using this technique since. As long as you eject the disk as soon as you hear that horrible sound, most disks should be able to be fixed and the drive heads not need to be re-cleaned inside. A disk cleaner can be used most times to clean the drive heads without having to open the drive and no damage to the actual disk can be achieved if the dirty disk is ejected quickly enough.

This is also as long as you know the drive is good. I recently had a drive that I cleaned and started using and it started damaging disks. Have yet to figure out why it is. So it has been shelved until I can. But so far this is one drive out of dozens that I've had this happen to so far.

Hope that helps some and hope the drive you have is ok and might be the disks...

Robert

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Ludiks

Posted Wed Apr 07, 2021 8:53 am

Hi Robert and thank you for reply.

Hmm yes, dust...since I moved twice, even if they remained in closed boxes, some dust might have been generated and ruined this down yes :/

About the disk cleaning, have to open it, right?
They are not really meant to be open, dont they? because the one I opened cracked and I will have to use some glue or tape to keep it closed now.

Also if some invisible to the naked eye dust can cause this, we might have to do this in a pretty dust free room...which is harded than it seems :/

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intric8
Seattle, WA, USA
Website

Posted Wed Apr 07, 2021 10:21 am

I am no expert disk cleaner, but I think he means for you to slide the metal door open and hit the exposed disk area.

Some folks have even designed some ingenious "disk spinners" to help with the process that you can 3D print. Just drop the disk in the bracket thingy and spin it while gently applying the cleaning agents.

If your white soft cloth seems to change color in any way, either the disk is dusty, moldy or is actually deteriorating.

My disks and nearly all been stored in a dry, cool place so virtually none of mine have fallen to this fate yet. Only ones I buy and travel are the most worrisome.

Anyway, there is this innovative idea for helping with the whole endeavor of cleaning disks in 2021.
diskSpinnerThingies.jpg
Photo by markgm on Ebay

525disk.jpg
Photo by markgm on Ebay

s-l1600.jpg
Photo by markgm on Ebay

Markgm, on Ebay:
I created these disk cleaners to make it a bit easier to clean the mold and other debris off of floppy disks. The arrow on the knob lets me know when I've cleaned a full revolution of the disk. Both sizes of disk cleaners allow the disk to be slid into the carrier and be lightly held in place to make it easier to clean the disk surface. A Q-tip or microfiber cloth dipped in isopropyl alcohol makes a great cleaner.

The 3.5" disk cleaner keeps the shutter open, making it easier to clean the disk surface. The knob connects to both holes allowing the disk to be rotated without binding up the disk shell.

The 5.25" disk cleaner uses a two part knob. To attach the two pieces together simply place the larger knob on the underside of the disk and use your thumbs to thread the retaining nut into place. It doesn't have to be cranked down tightly. Once the knob is attached to the disk simply slide the disk under the retaining clips in the frame and clean the disk surface.
Pretty damned cool.

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Robert_MyAmigaShop
USA
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Posted Wed Apr 07, 2021 3:01 pm

Hi intric8,

Wow thats pretty cool, never thought about something like that. Would defiantly come in handy when doing alot of disks. Sometimes my index finger gets sore holding the door open after only a few disks, so this should really help.

Thanks for that. :-)

Ludiks,

I've been using a cotton swab/que tip with IP and holding the door open on the disk and cleaning the platter a small section at a time until the whole disk is cleaned. Just kinda be careful not to put to much IP on the platter, cause most disks have pads on either side of the platter that can get too wet and make the platter hard to turn, and if forced can actually waud up the pad in the disk, which is not good. :-)

As far as I know these are not anything like harddrives as far as needing a clean room or anything like that.

Most of the bad disks I've had were I think stored where the climate changed causing condensation on the platter, in which the drive heads don't like, so a good cleaning is all that is usually needed.

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Ludiks

Posted Thu Apr 08, 2021 1:40 pm

Thank you for your help 🙇‍♂️
I will let you know once I cleaned disks.





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