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Modding Project HARD drive

Discussion in 'Modding' started by DLippman, 7 Nov 2003.

  1. DLippman

    DLippman What's a Dremel?

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    I'm sure we've all had the idea before... what if I could see my harddrive work while it was on?
    Lemme just say now before I go on that I don't expect this to be easy by any means. The platters are a very sensitive surface and the accuracy of the arm is extreme. As it stands I may have already claimed my first casualty. So here goes...

    I got a little too excited when I started and forgot about the camera but from here on I'll throw all that in. Basically what I'm trying to do is mod my drive so that you can see inside while its running. I thought it would be even cooler if I put LEDs inside that lit with the HD light on the front of my case.
    Here's so far:
    1) Take lid off old drive for a look around
    2) put lid back on and place in sealed bag to stay clean now that seals are broken
    3) Cut out the new lid
    4) drill holes (outer, spindle and servo arm)
    5) cut depressions in lid for raised servo and spindle bearings
    6) place LEDs in shrinktube
    7) sandwich package together with RTV gasket compound seal

    heres how it looks:
    [​IMG]

    now this looks alright you can see here LEDs sandwiched in:
    [​IMG]

    Here's a picture of the depressions, unfortnatly I was without my router table so I was using the bit in a drillpress and going slow:
    [​IMG] but not slow enough as you can see :worried:

    The red mess around the sides is the RTV compound. For those of you new to this its a gasket compound commonly found in automotive stores for creating easy seals on metal to metal. It comes in several temperature ranges (I used hightemp because I had it lying around). I'm sure there's something cleaner for this but I didn't want to wait.

    Now comes the hour of redemption...
    I plug it in, fire the beast up and... :jawdrop: my depressions appear to no be deep enough the drive attempts to spin up but, caught in a bind, meerly sqeeks and beeps at me. Doing some four letter words I scramble for the power button. I'm gonna take it apart tomarrow and work something new I've got in my head, hopefully its not dead yet.

    there's my first.
    stay tuned for more excitement!

    Devan
     
  2. DLippman

    DLippman What's a Dremel?

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    already found my next victim if this doesn't work out...
    [​IMG]
     
  3. f50

    f50 What's a Dremel?

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    i hope these aren't expensive drives you're experimenting with. it's a great idea, though, best of luck with it. :thumb:
     
  4. bozo

    bozo What's a Dremel?

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    some RTV seems to have gotten onto the platter :nono:
     
  5. DLippman

    DLippman What's a Dremel?

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    I was thinking that at first too I almost threw it on the floor right there. Turns out its just one of the shiniest surfaces ever and its reflecting the RTV above it. :hehe:
     
  6. DLippman

    DLippman What's a Dremel?

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    We've been cleaning out the basement lately and found a large stash of old ones...
    Thanks for the encouragment
     
  7. G-gnome

    G-gnome Peter Dickison

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    Welcome to the forums DLippman.

    Individual component Mods really belong in the Modding section of the forums (I've moved the thread here ).

    You may find your HDD won't work unless it is an older one and you have done your mod carefully. There are a few members who have done this sort of a mod, with mixed success -mashie had 2 drives die, but Linear got one to work still. Depends on the drive but generally if it has a center screw/support for the platters it seems to die when modded. If you want something for show only and will be using other drives it could work for you.

    There might even be a guide or link to one here on Bit (I'm sure I've seen one somewhere...)

    Good luck.

    :)
     
  8. zebra

    zebra What's a Dremel?

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  9. Solarius

    Solarius What's a Dremel?

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    Nice. This is one of the hardest Mod's to do though. Did you find any extra Floppy drives down there?
     
  10. taliban_raider

    taliban_raider Just some guy; you know

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    Why on earth would any one want a flopy drive?

    Seriously but I never use them.

    Nice work on the mod I have done somehting similar myself but it dint work out the thing died and stopped working but it looks good :rock:
     
  11. Yo-DUH_87

    Yo-DUH_87 Who you calling tiny?

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    I have 3 drives from that series, very reliable drives, never had a problem with 'em. One is running in my linux file server, the other 2 (a 9.1 and a 18.2) are running in my experimental/mp3 box. I would imagine that they are prety robust, wouldn't want to risk destroying a hdd myself, though :duh:

    Was that a maxtor/IBM drive you used durring your first attempt? Got one of those laying around as well :p

    /me has many old hdds in use in various places :D
     
  12. RaptorLord

    RaptorLord What's a Dremel?

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    I'm guilty of this too - I have 3 sitting on my end table - people ask me what they're for and I tell em they're coasters :naughty:
     
  13. Yo-DUH_87

    Yo-DUH_87 Who you calling tiny?

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    Lol, I realy should throw out everything <2gb, but I don't have the will power to do it. Who knows when you will need an extra 56mb? That's about what, 13 MP3s? :p
     
  14. DLippman

    DLippman What's a Dremel?

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    Version 2

    I guess I should've read that article befpre I started, thanks for the link. Well despite not gettting to his article in time I've come up with something very similar in shape (mine as a trial piece made out of recycled materials is not nearly as pretty of course).

    So here's the head over shot:
    [​IMG]
    I tried experimenting with the plastic by roughing it up below the seek arm with sand paper. I was hoping this would better distribute the light form the LEDs aross the window. It appears tho that the RTV compund (clear looks much nicer than red) has fouled my idea an filled in the roughing.
    Also I didn't like the way the LEDs sat before so I moved them to the top, I'm thinking maybe I can build something that looks like a flux capacitor to supply the LEDs 9 point 10 giggawatts... I mean 3 volts. :hip:

    [​IMG]

    I noticed in the article linked to above that he was not using screws to hold his spindle/arm in place. I've done this as I don't see the drive lasting long without this. taped over one and left teh other open as a breather hole (i've noticed a lot of drives have these now).

    Plugged it in, defragged twice, copied 300mb on and off and ran a scandisk without errors. looks like I may have a winner. Now if only I can pull it off with a useful drive...
    Anyone have thoughts on what I could do to make this look cooler?? :)

    thanks,
    Devan

    I noticed that the
     
  15. malcs

    malcs oops! i put a hole in the ***** :(

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    IMHO its a bit messy :) you need to do a hard drive mod like mashie's various ones
     
  16. Solarius

    Solarius What's a Dremel?

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    Make you pics smaller! :) It is pretty messy, but if you fire up those LED's and put it in your rig behind another plexi window, you might not even be able to see all the adhesive.
     
  17. Solarius

    Solarius What's a Dremel?

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    Because I'm making a computer for someone and they want one. I really rather not spend money on one if I can get one for free. Unfortunately I threw three or four out the last time I moved.. :(
     
  18. Eaglespirit

    Eaglespirit What's a Dremel?

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    I've a question about the breath hole. Is it possible for dust to come into the harddrive that way? Isn't there any filter on the "breath" holes on real drives?

    Nice mod though. Want some pictures of it up and running :)
     
  19. DLippman

    DLippman What's a Dremel?

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    You can have the floppy, but only if you take all of them ;)


    As for running pictures, the primer is drying right now...
     
  20. Sil3nT

    Sil3nT What's a Dremel?

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    Hey man your take your hd and put it in a glad bag while playing with the cap . Heres my simple hd mod www.sil3nt.com/pc.html
     

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