View Full Version : Are 5.25" floppies rare?

February 19th, 2007, 07:35 AM
My dad (70+) has for a number of years followed various computing classes for senior citizens. The teachers have varied in skill and ability to teach. Since last fall, they have what sounds like a self-proclaimed besserwisser, telling the "students" all kinds of own solutions how to do common things in Windows, often claiming it is The Way to do it. He also adds a bit of historic computer wisdom to his speeches, relayed through my dad in a way that I feel is completely insane. More than once I have expressed my desire in go talking to that lecturer about what he knows and what he "knows".

Lately, my dad asked me if I have any of these big floppy disks? Not those small ones with a metal shield, but the big, soft ones. He means 5.25". The teacher has told his students that those disks are VERY RARE these days and worth a lot of money. Well yes, you can not buy them in a store and there are no new computers built today that features a 5.25" drive if it is not a vintage computing geek who builds himself a new PC. But still.

I told my dad that I have at least 50-70 disks (I don't have a big collection) and that I happen to know someone who has shelves full of still shrink-wrapped floppies, both SSDD and DSHD (unfortunately not so many DSDD, neither 48 nor 96 tpi). I suppose one could sell one or two boxes of 100 each for a good sum of money, but not to the extent that collectors will flock like wasps to sweet lemonade.

I saw that Athana sells newly manufactured 5.25" floppies starting at $8 for a pack of ten. If I can offer the teacher true, RARE (over 20 year old!) vintage floppies for $20 per box, maybe that is a good price?

February 19th, 2007, 09:39 AM
That's crazy. Maybe you should exploit his stupidity :p

February 19th, 2007, 10:31 AM
Maybe they were talking about 8" disks, and those are probably worth $20 a box.

February 19th, 2007, 08:14 PM
Athana makes 8" floppies also, not so rare really.

February 19th, 2007, 10:53 PM
I'd be willing to bet that this computer teacher never has heard of 8" floppy disks. I have barely seen them in real life.

February 21st, 2007, 08:20 AM
If I where you, I would rip off the teacher, selling the floppies at $25 a box. after selling 10 or so boxes, I would move out of town...:grin:

CP/M User
February 24th, 2007, 02:36 AM
I saw some 8" disks many years ago (early 90s). A box of 10 was nearly $100! I didn't really have any use for them so I didn't get them, though the size of the box was large! :-D

What I do have is 3" Discs (yes they call them Discs instead of Disks) for my Amstrad, though I've got 5.25" for it as well (perhaps more since my first IBM used DSDD 5.25" disks). Depending on where you from though a box of 10 (new) 3" Discs in Oz was around the $100 mark as opposed to the UK (where they fall out of trees - figure of speech) at about a Quarter of the price for as many discs - they were ex-Software though, still they were in quite good nick and if you were lucky - there was some software on some of them! :-D

February 24th, 2007, 06:24 AM
Damn, I feel old.

When I started fixing computers, 8" floppies were the only game in town. I still have several boxes of them and the amazing thing is that things like my Tandy II/12/16/16B/6K diagnostics, the Pickles and Trout CP/M and most of all the other disks I have still boot right up.

CP/M User
February 24th, 2007, 09:04 PM
I must just add that I was pickin' up 5.25" disks sometime after 2000 which were still in shrink wrap. What gets me is there seems to be more 1.2Mb Disk Drives floating around than 360k Disk Drives - I've never seen a DSHD 5.25" disk - I simply have none in my collection and the bulk I would say are DSDD 5.25" Disks - I might have the odd SSSD(?) in there too.
Based on what type of 5.25" disk there are out there would it be feasible that certain types of 5.25" disks have more value to them than other disks (based on rarity)?

February 24th, 2007, 10:39 PM
I never touched a 8" floppy or seen one in use. When I got my first x86 PC in 1989 or 90 it used 1.2" HD disks along with 3.5" HD (286/12 Packard Bell). I still have a few ancient 5.25 HD but most of my 5.25" is DD.

February 25th, 2007, 11:59 PM
Many years ago in the harbour (c:a 1989-90), there was an electronics dump. Of course it was prohibited for unauthorized people to go there, but it didn't stop people from sneaking by at night, in particular as long as they didn't put up a fence. I never scored anything, but a computer teacher (!) at school went there one night and found a Xerox computer of some sort. He found enough parts to assemble a working system, including a bunch of 8" floppy disks. It was put on display in the computer room, but I don't think it ever got used or what happened to it later. I must admit it is the only occasion I've seen, much less used a 8" disk.

February 26th, 2007, 07:21 AM
Currently, sitting on one of my work benches, I have a Tandy Model 12 (2 - 8" thin-line Tandon floppy drives), a Tandy Model 16 (2 - 8" thin-line Tandon floppy drives) and a Tandy 16B (1 - 8" thin-line Tandon floppy drive and 1 - 15MB 5" Tandon HD).

Scattered between them are several boxes of 8" Dysan diskettes with various and sundry diagnostic on then to be able to determine and help correct what is, at the moment, keeping them from working flawlessly.

Now, you have to keep in mind that two of these 1.25MB thin-line drives take up the space (and equal the weight) of one of the old Shugart SA800 (1/2 MB) drives. On the Tandy Model II, the 3 drive expansion bay ( 3 X SA800) was about the same size as the Model II computer, and, all decked out, you had a whopping grand total of 2MB of on-line storage).

In ADDITION, at MAJOR expense (like say, 8 grand for the primary and 5 grand for each for the 3 slaves) you could have an unbelievable 32 MBs of hard drive space, each in its own 12" x 12" x 6" box (8 inch platters).

I'm sure glad that, although we service people were the ones that would connect it all up and test it out, it was the sales people that had to pack it up, lug it all out to the customer's site, unbox it all and then wait for us LMAO.