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View Full Version : Finally own an 8" hard drive! Memorex Model 101... NIB!!



aaron7
September 23rd, 2009, 05:22 PM
Just picked it up today. Brand new in the original box!

It even came with a printed manual. 11mb woooo!

My plan was to display it in the store next to a 5.25", 3.5", 2.5", and a microdrive.

Also wondering if it's worth anything? I just moved out so if it's worth some coin I suppose I can let it go.

It also came with a free gift; a Siemens FDD 100-8E... looks new too!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v245/aaron7/parts4sale/DSC03487.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v245/aaron7/parts4sale/DSC03488.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v245/aaron7/parts4sale/DSC03489.jpg

aaron7
October 12th, 2009, 08:23 AM
Aww no one else thinks this is cool??

nige the hippy
October 12th, 2009, 08:47 AM
somehow missed it,
Yes it's cool, and the floppy is a pretty good freebie too.

barythrin
October 12th, 2009, 10:32 AM
lmao Aaron.. I can read the disappointment you had. Same with me, I missed the original post somehow (like a lot of bad Americans I do a lot more forum monitoring at work waiting for things to complete than home).. just a justification if someone gets an intro missed during a weekend post, etc.

Anyway yeah that's cool. If it works it's worth a bit. I haven't really come to figure out when/what drives go for a lot but for example TRS-80 external hard drives seem to always sell and last time I checked they were $100-200 range (US) for a 10-20MB drive (this was 2 years ago last time I was looking). I suppose as most it's worth but bigger bucks if you say it works and show some indication of such.

Seems like drives for old Apple systems did similar (Lisa drives). I think most of the ones I saw were external, but again.. the rare part is WORKING. Anything WORKING is worth something usually :-)

Never-the-less neat find!
- John

aaron7
October 12th, 2009, 10:36 AM
I seriously have no idea how to check to see if it even accepts power; let alone functions.

It IS new though. Don't see why it wouldn't.

mbbrutman
October 12th, 2009, 11:03 AM
That's the problem. It is not new. It is 25 to 30 years old. Never used != new.

There are a lot of potential problems. The lubricant on the platters might have devolved into something else by now. Rubber parts age even when not in use. Plastic coatings on wires can age. Electrolytic fluid in capacitors can age.

aaron7
October 12th, 2009, 11:11 AM
So where can I plumb some power into this thing to see if it spins up?

mbbrutman
October 12th, 2009, 11:24 AM
Don't!

You have no idea what you might be damaging by even trying it. I always ask, what are the risks and what is the reward? If the only reward you are going to get is to hear it spin and the risk is to damage it beyond recognition, then that says to leave it alone.

aaron7
October 12th, 2009, 11:25 AM
True, but the drive will do nothing more than rot in the basement so I might as well see if it does something!

mbbrutman
October 12th, 2009, 11:33 AM
Aaron,

It's not my business, but you posted here publicly.

If you destroy it, that will just be one more piece of hardware you have mishandled over the years. So feel free to hook up a car battery to it and completely destroy it, because that sounds like what you are going to do anyway.

I don't know what your interest in vintage equipment really is. You don't know what it is, you don't know how to handle it, yet you are ready to sacrifice it just to see if it spins. Makes no sense to me.

aaron7
October 12th, 2009, 11:43 AM
If it isn't worth anything, who cares? That's my mentality.

If it was a $1000 Apple Lisa drive then yah, of course I'd never take it apart.

But this is something I've bought for $10, no one has expressed any interest in, and I'd like to play with it and take it apart to see what makes it tick.

I think playing with it makes more sense than letting it rot in a basement, but that's just me.

mbbrutman
October 12th, 2009, 11:55 AM
I think it is worth something. So I suggest finding out more about it, like how to interface it with a controller card, how to safely power it up the first time around, etc. There is a lot of expertise out there, and not all on this web forum either. (The ClassicCmp mailing list comes to mind.)

But you have to have some patience. Just powering it up to see if it spins seems to make little sense if you don't know anything about it and you might damage it.

Some research might show that these are durable drives, and letting it sit for 25 years did it no harm. That is unlikely though. But without the research you are rolling the dice, and the odds are badly in your favor. And it's probably worth more than you know, especially to somebody who needs one for an obscure machine.

krebizfan
October 12th, 2009, 11:56 AM
If it isn't worth anything, who cares? That's my mentality.

If it was a $1000 Apple Lisa drive then yah, of course I'd never take it apart.

But this is something I've bought for $10, no one has expressed any interest in, and I'd like to play with it and take it apart to see what makes it tick.

I think playing with it makes more sense than letting it rot in a basement, but that's just me.

It's old and used to be very expensive. Check the manual since you have it and see if you can get the right power and connections for it. If you have the right connectors, hook it up and see what works. Please don't just open it up; very few of the early hard disks were made and fewer remain.

I am surprised that such a drive was never used before. I thought it cost around multiple thousands when made, way too much to just leave on a shelf.

Securix
October 12th, 2009, 11:58 AM
While it's true from a practical perspective that having something and not using it for the fear it might break is sort of the same thing as not having it at all, for something so delicate, it might be safer to leave it alone.

That said, if you really plan to power this up, you should have at least some idea of the voltage and current requirements as well as the power connector layout.

Since it's so old, I don't think (not sure) that it uses a standard 4-pin +12v, +5v Molex drive power connector but from the pic, likely uses something else with 3 pins, or proprietary.

Do you have an interface card or planning to connect it to a computer that might actually use it as storage?

nige the hippy
October 12th, 2009, 12:15 PM
Somebody somewhere is probably looking for one of these, if you look after it, when you've finshed looking at it, that somebody somewhere will have a chance to get their something-or-other up and running, which will give them immense pleasure, and repay them for the 100s of hours getting to a point when they realised that their extremely difficult to find 8" hard drive was up the spout.

You've confused cost with value.

It's quite scary, but pick something up like that, and you pick up quite a chunk of responsibility.

Anonymous Freak
October 12th, 2009, 05:36 PM
Aww no one else thinks this is cool??

I always thought the 8" accessories were fun antiques. I like how a Microdrive fits through the hole in an 8" floppy disk.

davidB
October 19th, 2009, 02:56 PM
I'm in a similar boat. A few months ago I picked up a 8" IBM 53FD drive and a couple of 8" floppy disks for $7, just because it was so cheap and it looked so cool. But my drive came with zero documentation and I've gotten nowhere trying to find any.

Herb Johnson at http://www.retrotechnology.com tried to help but found no manuals, and further, said that documentation, circuit diagrams, etc. for equipment of this age often doesn't exist at all.

But like aaron7, I want to run the thing!

My drive was missing the drive belt. Yesterday I made a rubber drive belt from a strip of bicycle wheel rim liner glued together with a tire patch. The drive motor is labeled 220 VAC, but it ran with 120, and with that belt, drove the floppy. I'd like to get a proper belt but this at least operates the drive.

There is a solenoid labeled 24 volts that engages the floppy heads. I had an 18 volt DC model train transformer that worked enough to operate the solenoid.

So now the motor will start, will spin up the floppy and the heads can be engaged.

mbbrutman, I can understand your concern about damaging antique equipment, but I'm leaning toward aaron7's point of view. I don't want to damage the thing, but I also don't want to just set it on a shelf to collect dust and be a museum piece. I'd love to see it operate as a disk drive.

The original electronics control board is an absolute mystery. It is populated with with about a dozen little silver square IBM parts that look like custom ICs and a few dozen more resistors, caps and some other chips that don't look like any logic that I've heard of. The board interface is nothing at all like any modern floppy interface socket.

With no documentation, no input, output or power diagram or logical documentation, I don't see any hope for operating the original board.

If anyone can help with understanding the existing logic board I'd be happy to
work on getting it running. Otherwise I think I'm going to start trying to see
what can be done about making a new control board to run the thing.

Securix
October 19th, 2009, 03:10 PM
Just recently saw an ad for that Memorex 101 8" hard drive (or Winchesters, as they were once known) in an old issue of BYTE. One reseller had had it listed for $2000.

oe3pha
October 26th, 2009, 10:03 AM
Hi ... the Memorex model 101 winchester and the Siemens fdd200 8" floppy is part of the winchester drive of Zenith Data Model Z67. The controller was a specific memorex for this drives ... the operating system was CP/M/HDOS/UCSD Pascal ... the netto space was 10MB and a certain partitioning utility was used ... you check sebhc user group for specifics ... the drive was operated by AC 110V/DC 12V/DC 5v/DC -12V ... the interface of the controller to the computer system was SASI ... so be informed after a quie long time ... I came occassionaly to this forum ... at first I looked around and had to get an account to post this thread ... peter

millerrl143
February 12th, 2012, 02:30 PM
I still own an operating Z-67 enclosure with a worn spindle on the Memorex 101 drive. I can occasionally get it to get up to speed and boot up. I have a replacement drive (different vendor) but I do not know what the drive dip switches mean. I have no data on what there are for. I am looking for any information on the Memorex 101 drive. I have all manuals and software (lots) disks for these machines. I know it's a relic just like me but I'd like to get this running again, just for fun. Any help would be appreciated. I know these posts were in the past but I can always hope the original manual is still around somewhere!

Bungo Pony
February 28th, 2012, 04:30 AM
I seem to recall seeing documentation online that can enable you to connect an 8" drive to a 5 1/4" drive connector, but these drives require 24v to operate, so you'd have to use a separate power supply.

And if you're going to risk blowing it up, please trade me for my 8" drive which is in dire need of refurbishment.

billdeg
February 28th, 2012, 05:11 PM
Unpark the heads before you power it on, and don't leave the room while it's running, as it may pop a cap if left running for too long. There should be a screw with a plastic or metal arm bolted to the side with an arrow that shows what direction to park/unpark the head. It's probably good for it to run for 30 minutes every six months or so. That is if it does not catch fire first.

I hope you can take good quality pictures should someone need them. You may someday regret damaging it before you know everything there is to know about it. But that's the historical preservationist in me speaking. It's your property, do what makes you happy.

I would sell the drive for $300+

Bill

Chuck(G)
February 28th, 2012, 05:33 PM
????

The OP was in 2009--I surely hope that Aaron's done something with it in 3 years. :huh:

billdeg
February 28th, 2012, 05:35 PM
I did not see that...lol

Bungo Pony
March 1st, 2012, 08:55 PM
The OP was in 2009--I surely hope that Aaron's done something with it in 3 years. :huh:

Hah, didn't see that either. I wonder how much smoke that 8" drive gave off after he plugged it into his wall outlet :boom:

lucasdaytona
March 2nd, 2012, 06:53 AM
I'm afraid of damaging hardware, and VERY afraid of damaging old hardware, those things will never be manufactured again, very nice piece of history, and even a rather common Pentium 100 cpu is something that deserves be well treated. I think I will never forgive myself for letting that 407MB Seagate Hard Drive fall into my feet, 12 years ago...

what sad moment.

mnbvcxz
March 2nd, 2012, 10:13 AM
I think I will never forget myself for letting that 407MB Seagate Hard Drive fall into my feet, 12 years ago...

what sad moment.

I have a bare 8" hard drive that weighs at least 10kg, If that fell on my foot, It would probably take my foot off:D
And I think the drive capacity is only 5-10 MB.

Chuck(G)
March 2nd, 2012, 10:17 AM
Better than a 14" hard drive taking off your leg...

mnbvcxz
March 2nd, 2012, 01:32 PM
Better than a 14" hard drive taking off your leg...

You are right, if I had to lose part of my body I'd use the 8" drive. :D

lucasdaytona
March 2nd, 2012, 01:55 PM
Better than a 14" hard drive taking off your leg...

What thing on Earth used a 14" Hard Drive???

Please do not tell that was a personal computer hard drive...

Chuck(G)
March 2nd, 2012, 02:34 PM
Yessir. Pre-PC, but present on a number of systems, including the Perq, my own Durango F85 and probably a fair number of S100 systems. (Shugart SA4000 series)

lucasdaytona
March 2nd, 2012, 04:06 PM
Yessir. Pre-PC, but present on a number of systems, including the Perq, my own Durango F85 and probably a fair number of S100 systems. (Shugart SA4000 series)



That's it! I do not know nothing in this world. LOL

Tor
March 3rd, 2012, 07:37 AM
The way I remember them the replaceable-type Hawk disks must have been around 14" as well? IIRC they were 10MB harddisk 'packs', and you swapped one for another by inserting a handle at the top and removed the one in use, then replacing it with the other one. Made kind of sense when the disk sizes were only 10MB and there was lots of satellite data to store.. whenever you forgot to warn everybody that you were about to switch the disks you had to buy a cake (and take some vocal abuse from the guys who lost their work.. :))

I never measured them but I imagine them as slightly bigger than an LP, thus maybe 14"..

-Tor