Apple 5.25 Drive making an occassionally horrid noise

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Joined: Feb 22 2011
Posts: 3

Hi All, I'm new here and thought I would finally ask this question.

I have an Apple 5.25 floppy drive that makes an occasional click, and simultaneous higher pitched noise, compared to normal drive operation, that results in a floppy read failure.. it happens with multiple floppies that I know are tested good floppies.. and it doesn't happen with every floppy I boot off of.. it's currently daisy chained off a 3.5 Apple floppy drive, and then to my IIGS..

I have opened the 5.25 drive and did noticed some rust along side the top of the metal chassis, but the controller card looks very clean, and other parts of the drive as well..

At first I thought it was dirt on the head, but I'm not sure.. should I use isopropyl alcohol ? I don't want to purposely damage it due to lack of research.. or does this sound like an alignment problem?

I did make a video recording the issue, and posted it to my Youtube account.. but I think pasting in that link on this posting would be taboo?

Thx!

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Joined: Apr 11 2006
Posts: 1013
Re: Apple 5.25 Drive making an occassionally horrid noise

Apple II drives make different sounds on different occasions. Sometimes it's because of head movement, sometimes it's because the head is banging into a stop to reorient itself after a read failure, sometimes it's because of lack of lubrication. It could be any/all of these. There's not much in the way of alignment to go out; it's highly unlikely that's the problem.

A video would be very appropriate to help diagnose the problem. You could at least offer some clues as to what your YouTube account name is. Wink

Here's a video of drive head cleaning...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CMF3PL17kqg

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Joined: Feb 22 2011
Posts: 3
Re: Apple 5.25 Drive making an occassionally horrid noise

Alrighty I'll attach the video I made

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-2OX8wcnVTU

I didn't want to edit the video, so every time it doesn't error out. But the last reboot it did, in that last few seconds of the video.

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Joined: Apr 11 2006
Posts: 1013
Re: Apple 5.25 Drive making an occassionally horrid noise

That's not a normal noise at all. On the other hand - what's the disk that you're booting? Have you tried with a bog-standard DOS 3.3 disk? I get that you've tried more than one "known good" ones, but what are they, exactly? Some DOS variants and speedup schemes do make the stepper motor do weird dances. A known-standard DOS would be a helpful test in this case.

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Joined: Feb 22 2011
Posts: 3
Re: Apple 5.25 Drive making an occassionally horrid noise

Maybe it is a collection of bad floppies.. -shrug- I'm going to format this disk again, and see if there are any errors.

The game i'm trying to boot is Ms Pacman.. now what you say does make sense.. because I have other problems with this game.. I can't move Ms Pacman around.. and it's a strong possibility that the other floppies I had problems with, was the same exact image of Ms Pacman.. it's been a while and I didn't document it so I could be wrong..

I don't have a standard DOS 3.3 disk.. I'll have to go searching for one..

I know the problem is consistent, among the same disks.. the second part of my experiment is to expand Ms Pacman onto another floppy.. also expand a different game onto the floppy Ms Pacman is currently loaded, and see what the results are..

Are you the same David Schmidt that wrote ADTPro? GREAT tool btw Smile

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Joined: Apr 11 2006
Posts: 1013
Re: Apple 5.25 Drive making an occassionally horrid noise

mburkemsp wrote:

I don't have a standard DOS 3.3 disk.. I'll have to go searching for one..

ftp://ftp.apple.asimov.net/pub/apple_II/images/masters/dos_3.3.dsk

mburkemsp wrote:

Are you the same David Schmidt that wrote ADTPro? GREAT tool btw Smile

Yep, that's me. Glad you like it. I did some creation, but a lot of assimilation too... the credits page is long.
http://adtpro.sourceforge.net/credits.html