Author Topic: Help, I changed the drive-belt and now my disk drive is suddenly read-only?  (Read 30203 times)

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Offline Bryce

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This is probably one of the most frequently asked questions here in the forum, so I thought I'd make a short guide to address it...

Chances are, you've lost the write-pin while you were changing the belt. It's a small metal pin that senses the position of the write-protection tab on the inserted disk and if it's missing all disks will seem to be write-protected to the computer. But before you go crawling around aimlessly on that patterned carpet, here's what you are actually looking for:

Pin.JPG
* Pin.JPG
(Filesize: 126.39 KB, Dimensions: 1024x768, Views: 735)


Yes, it's small. If you do find it, this is where it needs to go. It simply drops into the hole. If no disc is inserted at the time, it should go all the way in until the head is lying against the aluminium frame:

PinPos.JPG
* PinPos.JPG
(Filesize: 222.06 KB, Dimensions: 1024x768, Views: 869)


However, this might not be your problem. There are several versions of the Amstrad 3in drive and not all of them used a physical pin, some used optical sensors. So how do you tell if your drive had a pin in the first place?
If your drives PCB has a black sensor like this one:

Optical1.JPG
* Optical1.JPG
(Filesize: 188.02 KB, Dimensions: 1024x768, Views: 903)


Or a plexiglass sensor like this one:

Optical2.JPG
* Optical2.JPG
(Filesize: 149.32 KB, Dimensions: 1024x768, Views: 889)


Then stop crawling around on your hands and knees like an idiot, your drive never had a pin, so you haven't lost it.

If however, your PCB has switch contacts that look like this:

PinSwitch.JPG
* PinSwitch.JPG
(Filesize: 154.34 KB, Dimensions: 1024x768, Views: 872)


Then keep looking, you really have lost it. If you still can't find it, then your only option is to make a new one. This is what you'll need to make:

Writepin.png
* Writepin.png
(Filesize: 10.17 KB, Dimensions: 960x720, Views: 847)
[/attach][/attach]
« Last Edit: 09:36, 14 January 20 by Bryce »
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Offline Gryzor

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Great guide!  Love the detail you went into, right down to the diagram. But why not in the wiki?
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Offline Bryce

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I was a bit worried about uploading anything to the Wiki at the moment, due to the issues with the updates. If the Wiki is deemed stable again, I'll copy the whole thing over tonight.

Bryce.
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Offline Gryzor

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The wiki is never unstable. When it's down, it's down for good. That's what the updates were there for anyhow :D

But yes, I understand. It's release-level again.
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Offline Bryce

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Transferred to the wiki. It can be found here (the article, not that pin that you've lost!): Writepin - CPCWiki

Bryce.
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Offline MaV

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Transferred to the wiki. It can be found here (the article, not that pin that you've lost!): Writepin - CPCWiki
Perfect!

I think the article has answered the pin problematic for good (even for the drives that don't have one)! :)
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"Work safe, work smart. Your future depends on it."

Offline Bryce

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Luckily, I own all types of the drive, so other than having to disassemble them all, it was just a matter of taking pictures. But at least from now on, when the next "Why is my drive read-only" question comes, we can just point them there instead of going through the whole thing again :)

Bryce.
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Offline Gryzor

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Awwww that's awesome, you deserve a gold star!


[attachimg=1]

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Offline Bryce

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Oooo, I'll print it out and stick it on my forehead :)

Bryce.
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Offline Gryzor

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No, you silly, that's for you to stick on your NC200!
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Offline Bryce

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I don't own an NC200, can I put it on my Tandy 102 instead?

Bryce.
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Offline Gryzor

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Ah, you're one of those kids, using their older and equally poor big brother's books, aren't you? :D

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Offline spookspring

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Hmm shouldn't you mention precision cleaning the roller heads, looking for loose wires, bad fuses and loose connectors?
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Offline TFM

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Thanks' for that GREAT guide Bryce!!!  :) :) :)
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TFM of FutureSoft
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Offline Bryce

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Hmm shouldn't you mention precision cleaning the roller heads, looking for loose wires, bad fuses and loose connectors?

Well it's not really meant to be a complete guide to fixing the drive, more of a guide for people who lost the write-pin, which seems to be a common occurance. What are roller heads??

Bryce.
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Offline beaker

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What are roller heads??


Hopefully nothing like what popped into my head....  :o

 [ Invalid Attachment ]

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Offline Bryce

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That's you isn't it? :D

Bryce.
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Offline TFM

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No, that Spookspring, because he knows them. I may be wrong though ;-)
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Offline zeropolis79

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Has anyone got one of these pins they would sell me please? I've checked my drive and it is missing the pin..

Many thanks!
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Offline AMSDOS

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Would it be easier to find the Pin with a Magnet instead of getting down on hands and knees?
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Offline AxelStone

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You are a wise man: just changed my ribbon and I've a read only drive because I didn't know was that small pin  ;D . I need to open it again and place it. Thanks!
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Offline Bryce

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I knew this thread would help someone eventually. :)

Bryce.
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Offline ||C|-|E||

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I akso had the problem looong ago, before internet. It was a bloody nightmare to realize what was happening! I was almost ready to give up when I found the pin  :picard: