Panasonic 3.5" Floppy Failures

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Bob Scott
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Panasonic 3.5" Floppy Failures

Post by Bob Scott » Mon Jan 05, 2009 4:08 pm

Has anyone else noticed the 3.5" floppy drives' failure with age? This is my third drive failure. These failures seem to be due to the age of the drive, they do not wear out. I only use them occasionally to transport short files to another computer. The heads are clean.

Syptoms are: One only: They can't read data. Everything else appears to be normal physically.

I think maybe there is some kind of ROM inside that forgets its data.

SETEC_Astronomy
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Post by SETEC_Astronomy » Mon Jan 05, 2009 5:39 pm

I have noticed exactly what you describe. I'm not sure of the cause of it but I have several computers that the floppy drive just suddenly went flaky on one day without provocation. One drive stopped all together, one reads but won't write and another writes but no other drive can read the disk. The last drive can't even read the disc I just made if I eject it and re-insert it, almost like it mimed it. My drives definitely did not die of usage or contamination. All my drives have nice dust covers and I keep my discs sealed in a dry, room temperature location. I've used each of the drives less than 20 times each. Thankfully I was given a few free USB flash drives and all my computers have at least one USB port.

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Sambuchi
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Post by Sambuchi » Mon Jan 05, 2009 5:50 pm

They have been known to take off a head now and then.

Be careful!

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Janitor Tzap
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Re: Panasonic 3.5" Floppy Failures

Post by Janitor Tzap » Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:56 am

Bob Scott wrote:Has anyone else noticed the 3.5" floppy drives' failure with age? This is my third drive failure. These failures seem to be due to the age of the drive, they do not wear out. I only use them occasionally to transport short files to another computer. The heads are clean.

Syptoms are: One only: They can't read data. Everything else appears to be normal physically.

I think maybe there is some kind of ROM inside that forgets its data.
Hmm....
Years ago, when the drives were built some what better.
When the drive stopped reading the disk, or wouldn't read a disk from another drive.
I first tried giving the heads a cleaning with isopropyl alcohol and a Q-tip to get the junk off the heads.

If that didn't solve it.
I broke out the Head Alignment Disk, and checked it's Alignment.
Then do adjustment to the head position.
{These new drives don't have adjustments on them.}:x

One thing on the TEAC drives is the disk in, and size switches can get clogged.
Thus, it will give you the "NO Disk Error", or "Wrong Disk Size Error".
Check them, and the solder joints to the switches.


Signed: Janitor Tzap

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reloadron
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Re: Panasonic 3.5" Floppy Failures

Post by reloadron » Tue Jan 06, 2009 1:52 pm

Bob Scott wrote:Has anyone else noticed the 3.5" floppy drives' failure with age? This is my third drive failure. These failures seem to be due to the age of the drive, they do not wear out. I only use them occasionally to transport short files to another computer. The heads are clean.

Syptoms are: One only: They can't read data. Everything else appears to be normal physically.

I think maybe there is some kind of ROM inside that forgets its data.
Never really gave it much thought but now that you mention it I have floppys that have run for years and still run fine and others that have simply failed with an inability to read a disk.

Till recently every system I built I shoved in a floppy. My last build I actually bought the floppy only to later discover the Intel motherboard I chose didn't even have a port for it. Even when I bought my now year and a half old laptop I picked up a USB floppy drive for it.

Seems the use of USB pen drives has pretty much replaced the ol' floppy drive after all the years. Probably one of the longest surviving pices of hardware that went pretty much unchanged other than capacity over all those years.

Ron

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MrAl
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Post by MrAl » Sat Jan 10, 2009 12:54 am

Hi there,

I had a floppy fail on me one time only, and the only part that failed
was that it could no longer 'boot' for some reason. If i wanted to
boot to floppy i had to change the drive (like for some floppy
hard disk routines back when they came on floppy).
I dont remember the model or make though, sorry.
It was the only floppy i ever saw fail though.
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

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