Author Topic: Cleaning floppy disks  (Read 3962 times)

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Offline Dr Tiger Ninestein

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Cleaning floppy disks
« on: 15:25, 24 August 15 »
I just found this video on YouTube. I never knew that floppys could be cleaned.


Do you think that a lot of the games on disk that stop working just need a good clean?




[youtube]https://youtube.com/watch?v=ZRT05QwHqPE[/youtube]


Offline Velktron

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #1 on: 16:04, 24 August 15 »
I knew that floppy drives need periodic cleaning and maintenance. I've seen floppy drives having formed such a large cake of dust on the heads (from disuse!) that they actually scratched and damaged any floppy inserted in them  :o


But the disks themselves....kinda risky, unless done very delicately, e.g. blowing tiny specks of dust off the surface. I once had to clean a couple of ZIP disks (they are just like big, thicker flopppies) this way, since their internal "sweep" mechanism didn't do the trick.

Offline radu14m

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #2 on: 18:08, 24 August 15 »
would be interesting if this would work for our CF2 discs :)

Offline Velktron

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #3 on: 18:14, 24 August 15 »
It would, but the CF2 disks are much better protected from external contaminants from pretty much all other kinds of floppy or bernoulli-type disks (ZIP, LS-120 etc.)


It's much more likely that any dirt problems will begin inside the drives themselves (which is also when the floppies are at their most vulnerable), so if something has to be cleaned, it should be the drives.

Offline yoshi.doshi

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #4 on: 18:37, 24 August 15 »

Defo check your drive's head  as contamination there can cause disk missing errors etc.

but with regards to non working disks  it can be very satisfying to bring back a non working disc. they do become contaminated. ive bought lots that sadly have become this way. Thumb prints , scum can be be removed by opening the shutter and examining it on every area. I usually use a very light amount of isopropyl on a few cuetips and just gradually work it through the whole disc removing any excess. jsut have a nice light source and problem areas aren't too difficult to spot. i have had many positive results on non working discs this way

Beware of any grit , solid particles which  are a killer and can produce the white rings of death. Happened to me on a roland in time which worked after purchase but because i didn't check it internally,  sadly after purchasing it,  i ended up killing it. Not so likely  if your not intending to use your orginal often but was a shame.

I think it always pays to keep a check on your original important discs especially new purchases.

A quick light hoovering doesn't do any harm either.


 

Offline Bryce

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #5 on: 22:02, 24 August 15 »
I wouldn't recommend what he shows in the video, especially not with disks as old as the CPCs. If needed, give the disk a blast of canned air, but anything touching the surface of a disk that old is risking further damage. Although if the disk is dead and the canned air doesn't work I suppose you have nothing to loose, but it would be an absolute last resort.

Bryce.

Offline yoshi.doshi

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #6 on: 22:57, 24 August 15 »
defo good advice but canned air won't remove inground thumbprints etc. i recieved  an amsoft disc version of jammin which had thumb prints on its surface. Thankfully i manged to get it working again using this  method  but it took about half an hour.  i think with some stuff sitting in attics etc with damp it can  often  penetrate but i guess it depends on how far you are prepared to risk.

last resort is a fair description. you can't go back.



   

Offline Bryce

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #7 on: 23:28, 24 August 15 »
I wouldn't recommend how he does it. The disk has a felt inlay designed to be "disk friendly" on the inner surface. Just put some pressure on the disk case and turn the disk. The felt should safely clean it without leaving any residue or risk of creasing the surface.

Bryce.

Offline TFM

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #8 on: 00:23, 25 August 15 »
Da hilft nur Diskettenfett:


Torfrock-Beinhart wien Rocker - YouTube
TFM of FutureSoft
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Offline yoshi.doshi

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #9 on: 00:46, 25 August 15 »
Da hilft nur Diskettenfett:


Torfrock-Beinhart wien Rocker - YouTube

Hell sometimes you got to wing it just a lttle bit. ive not lost many!!

Offline dlfrsilver

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #10 on: 11:48, 25 August 15 »
Yes most disks can be ok again after some cleaning, but for this, NO COTON EARS TIP ! They're way too abrasive, you need ultra soft woman eyes cleaner coton, and also open the disk completely, and use some 70% alcohol.

You put enough alcohol, but not too much on the coton, and then you wipe the magnetic surface gently from inner to outer.
Then once the full surface is covered, use a dry coton eyes cleaner on the alcohol, and check how the disk loves it, no more shit !

The thing behind that the alcohol must not stay long on the magnetic surface. Once the mould and dirt is remove, do the other side.
Repeat the same process.

Then glue carefully back  the floppy disk, and image it for preservation or just read it on your CPC :)

This requires some ability and some specific superglue (it must not drool over when you use it).

I have been able to generate IPF for CPC games out of cleaned games, as well as ST and Amiga games.

The mould and dirty are what make the disk failing on loading.

Offline Dr Tiger Ninestein

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #11 on: 18:34, 27 December 15 »
I've just tried cleaning for the first time a floppy that doesn't work. It's a ghostbusters 2 disk that will only go to the loading screen and then I just get a black screen.


I used 70% isopropyl alcohol and a woman's eye cleaner cotton.


Result: When I try to run the disk now, I get sent to the screen when you first turn the computer on :picard:

Offline Gryzor

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #12 on: 19:51, 27 December 15 »
Just asked my significant other, she said that de-make-up cotton pads do leave fibres behind, especially the two-sided ones. Also, if your solution was 70% alcohol, what was the other 30%?

Offline chinnyhill10

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #13 on: 20:01, 27 December 15 »
Long long time since I took a 3 inch disk apart, but 3.5 inch disks have pads inside them. So why not get a new 3.5 inch disk, take it apart and use that material to clean the disk? By definition the material must be safe.
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Offline Dr Tiger Ninestein

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #14 on: 22:42, 27 December 15 »
Just asked my significant other, she said that de-make-up cotton pads do leave fibres behind, especially the two-sided ones. Also, if your solution was 70% alcohol, what was the other 30%?




30% water. I made sure it was fully dry before using again and I gave it a blast with canned air to get rid of any fibres left behind.

Offline Dr Tiger Ninestein

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #15 on: 22:46, 27 December 15 »
Long long time since I took a 3 inch disk apart, but 3.5 inch disks have pads inside them. So why not get a new 3.5 inch disk, take it apart and use that material to clean the disk? By definition the material must be safe.



That probably would have been the sensible thing to do. Just tried it again and it loaded to the activision page again but got no further.


Either the disk is faulty or it's not compatible with a plus?

Offline TFM

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #16 on: 22:40, 05 January 16 »
Just asked my significant other, she said that de-make-up cotton pads do leave fibres behind, especially the two-sided ones. Also, if your solution was 70% alcohol, what was the other 30%?


Dark matter! [nb]To redye the black surface of the disc itself.[/nb]
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Offline dlfrsilver

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #17 on: 00:59, 14 January 16 »



That probably would have been the sensible thing to do. Just tried it again and it loaded to the activision page again but got no further.


Either the disk is faulty or it's not compatible with a plus?


The solution i preconised only work on disk which have not been eaten by the mould.


The other thing is : have opened fully the floppy disk ? If not => FAILED !


I also don't use any water with the alcohol. Only the 70% alcohol.


Next when you apply the alcohol on the disk surface, you do it quick and fast, then you use a SECOND coton (dry!) and you remove the alcohol on the surface + the mould.


I get no fiber on the surface, because i use a no plush version of Women eyes cleaner coton.


I have been able to recover 95% of the disks with this method. When it doesn't work it's because the magnetic surface of the disks is rotten and eaten....


PS2 : the idea of using the internal paper sheath of the floppy disk is worse idea of this year. The reason is quite simple, the magnetic surface is in contact with it, so if it's contaminated, the sheath of paper is ALSO contamined !


The thing to do once the disk is belly opened, is to tap with the coton (a little impregnated with alcohol) the paper sheath inside the floppy.
then use another dry coton and tap with it the remaining alcool inside the sheath.


And then dump the disk with your tool and extract the datas :)

Offline angelcaio

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Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #18 on: 23:12, 31 August 18 »
Hi. A few days ago I managed to recover a 6128.
http://www.cpcwiki.eu/forum/technical-support/memory-problem-whit-a-6128/?PHPSESSID=9fs0q6e2m4n6s6a0h29b4ag2s4
It worked perfectly and read and loaded the discs perfectly. I recently bought a batch of disk on ebay. I read one and tried to clean the discs with a cotton swab and isopropyl alcohol. I formatted this floppy and it reached 17%. Now he does not read any (drive a: read fail), those that I read before either.
Can the disk drive be damaged by using these discs?
Thanks


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Update:
I tried with the rpm utility (http://www.cpc-power.com/index.php?page=detail&num=10029) loading from 3.5" B: drive and i get 297 in track 0 and progressively increases to 302 rpm in track 39 for 3" drive A:
« Last Edit: 01:56, 01 September 18 by angelcaio »

Offline Bryce

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #19 on: 13:32, 02 September 18 »
By putting isopropanol on the surface of the disk you have accelerated the deterioration of the disk surface. It most likely then deposited most of its magnetic coating onto the head of the disk drive. You'll need to clean the disk drive head and avoid cleaning the surface of disks in the future. Throw away the disk that you cleaned, it will damage any drive you put it into.

Bryce.

Offline angelcaio

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #20 on: 18:47, 02 September 18 »
By putting isopropanol on the surface of the disk you have accelerated the deterioration of the disk surface. It most likely then deposited most of its magnetic coating onto the head of the disk drive. You'll need to clean the disk drive head and avoid cleaning the surface of disks in the future. Throw away the disk that you cleaned, it will damage any drive you put it into.

Bryce.
Thanks you for you advice.
 I only cleaned one. I cleaned it and then I tried to format it, it reached 17% and it gave an error. Later the unit no longer read any disc.
To clean the head what should I use?. Would distilled water with a cotton swab go well?


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Offline Bryce

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #21 on: 21:57, 02 September 18 »
You can clean the head with the exact method that you used on the disk (isopropanol etc), but wait for it to ully dry (30 Minutes) before you try a disk in it.

Bryce.

Offline angelcaio

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #22 on: 22:11, 02 September 18 »
Ok. Thaks very much

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Offline angelcaio

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Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #23 on: 16:00, 07 September 18 »
You can clean the head with the exact method that you used on the disk (isopropanol etc), but wait for it to ully dry (30 Minutes) before you try a disk in it.

Bryce.
On the spot!!
 I have cleaned the head with isopropyl alcohol and a cotton swab. I let it dry for 30 minutes and ... voilĂ ! it works again!
The only thing that saddens me is that I ruined my original disk of the system when I tried to start with it the other day after making the disaster. I have a copy of him. I do not know if there is any way to recover it and re-copy the content ... Thank you very much!!






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« Last Edit: 16:26, 07 September 18 by angelcaio »

Offline Bryce

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Re: Cleaning floppy disks
« Reply #24 on: 16:33, 07 September 18 »
It's a delicate operation, but in the past I have replaced the disk inside a diskette from a known good disk and copied the contents back across so that the original worked again.

Bryce.