View Full Version : Macintosh LC III - backup required...

September 13th, 2007, 08:40 AM
I hope that someone will be able to help me out.

My parish priest uses a Macintosh LC III that he was given a number of years ago. He uses this on a daily basis to write letters and meeting minutes etc etc. He also wrote a 300 page thesis on it... The floppy drive recently stopped working... It is not connected to the internet, so he cannot email from it. He would like his data backed up so that it can be accessed by Mac or PC.

He asked me for some help as I sometimes fiddle with computers... however I've never used an apple and feel a bit out of my depth.

I imagine the solution lies in either connecting it up to the net, connecting some external storage or ripping the hard drive out of it and putting it into something more modern... however I really would like a pointer in the right direction.

Thanks in advance for any help that you can give.

September 13th, 2007, 08:59 AM
Ok, well, you could hunt up a PDS slot ethernet card and use that to get on-line (with the appropriate software).

You could add external storage via a Syquest external removable hard drive system then connect it to a modern PC using a 25 pin SCSI card from a SCSI scanner (it should work and I'll be trying that particular experiment soon). Software should be available for both. However, you'd need something like TransMac to get them into PC format.

Serial transfer is probably out unless you have a RS-422 to RS-232 converter.

Pulling the drive out and putting it in a more modern system is doable if you have a SCSI controller and, again, TransMac.

So, it can be done, give the right equipment OR you could just let us know the make and model number of the floppy drive which one of us might have laying around and just replace that.

September 13th, 2007, 09:24 AM
Thanks for your quick response.

I guess the simplest option would be to get hold of a more up to date Apple with a spare drive bay then.... Would a new Mac take and read the old drive?

Is a working Macintosh LC III with printer at all collectable?

I like your tagline btw - one of Father Miller's favorite sayings :)

September 13th, 2007, 10:58 AM
I'm not a Mac user, however I think you could probably hook up any external SCSI device and copy the data off. You can likely find a SCSI zip drive and a disk or two at a local goodwill/salvation army, etc store for cheap that might work. You could also likely find a small used SCSI external drive enclosure and put any SCSI hard drive you want in there and hook it up and copy the data off.

I'm not sure if there were external floppies for that type of unit or how much that would cost but the previous two (SCSI zip or SCSI hard drive) might be cheaper than a network card depending on your shopping and area.

- John

*I'll go ahead and warn you that some zip drives and zip disks do have a defect that can cause each other to break the drive head on the zip drive and/or chip the next zip disk (which causes it to break any other zip drive you put it in). I haven't come across this myself but people would probably warn you if I didn't. On the other hand as long as you find one from someone that knows it works you're probably ok.

September 13th, 2007, 11:02 AM
I dunno much about the LC line, but I do have an External 3.5 floppy drive for Mac's if it would work on that particular machine. Little help anyone?

September 13th, 2007, 12:56 PM
I'm not sure that I'll be able to hook anything up to the old machine - eg modem or external disc as it will probably need drivers loading... and the floppy is not working.

I'm not about to hand code a driver on this thing :) and I don't know what drivers are already in there... perhaps the external SCSI thing would work. Although I don't have SCSI on anything else that I've got... although I could probably find someone...

Thanks again.

September 13th, 2007, 01:23 PM
It wouldn't need drivers, but I looked it up and it wouldn't work anyway :\

I do have internal 3.5 floppies from other Macs if that is of help to you.

September 13th, 2007, 02:00 PM
I know about older Macs, and I do have a couple LCIIIs.

You can do one of the following:

1. Swap the floppy with any 1.4MB drives used in a Mac from the SE all the way up to the last Beige G3 to move data via floppy. The only issue would be that is you had an auto inject drive and you use a manual inject one (has the black plastic door cover) the case will not light up with the slot so you would have to leave the cover off while moving the data.

2. Connect any Mac with a built in printer port to the LC3 using the standard Mac printer cable (round with 8 pins I think) and use chooser to network to the other machine and copy the data over. You will have to make sure one of the machines has file sharing up and running.

3. Use the built in SCSI port and connect an external HD (with a Mac rom ) to copy the files off. The HD can also be a non Mac variety but you would need it pre formatted (HFS not HFS+) with a utility on another Mac.

4. Remove the HD and connect it to another mac and copy the files over.

September 13th, 2007, 02:34 PM
I'm not sure that I'll be able to hook anything up to the old machine - eg modem or external disc as it will probably need drivers loading... and the floppy is not working.

No, actually macs have good built-in support for SCSI. If you connect something up, chances are high that it will "just work". Try it.

September 13th, 2007, 05:29 PM
No, actually macs have good built-in support for SCSI. If you connect something up, chances are high that it will "just work". Try it.

That depends on the operating system, OS 7.1 for example (which is probably common on an LC 3 with low RAM) does not have a built in CDROM driver for example. A HD formatted in HFS+ or using an install of OS 8 or later will not boot on 030 machines (without major hacks).

September 14th, 2007, 07:26 AM
I know, but even my OS 6.x recognizes pretty much every hard drive I've connected, and all he wants to do is back up the data. So it should work.

September 14th, 2007, 08:06 AM
Right, simple, so, why not just replace the floppy drive?

I know Apple has to do everything the hard way, but, it doesn't mean the people using them do.

If the OP can let us know the make and model of the floppy drive in the LCIII, I have a dead Pizza Box Mac that (for what I'd get for it) isn't worth fixing since it's missing little things like the HD sled.

I'll pull the floppy, test it in something that has the same drive and ship the thing to him if it's the same unit.

September 14th, 2007, 08:16 AM
OP - that's me I guess.

Next opportunity I get I'll open up the box and discover all its secrets

It may not be for a few days, as it is not in my possession (still being used... )

September 14th, 2007, 08:27 AM
O P - original poster - guy that started the thread - I had to figure that one out too.

September 14th, 2007, 08:27 AM
Yes, fortunately, getting into the Pizza Box Macs doesn't require a 10cm (that's about 4" for our US friends :)) thick "Easy Repair Techniques for the Mac" manual.

Umm, just as a stray thought, did anyone think of running a wet cleaning disk through the floppy 10 or 20 times?

September 14th, 2007, 12:14 PM
Ah well, now that you mention it... I'll go and purchase a cleaning disk...
Thanks for the heads up. I was also wondering about whether a SCSI to USB cable might help grab the data to my laptop - or am I in dreamworld at this point ...

September 14th, 2007, 03:33 PM
I've found that for 15-20 years of crud build-up on a set of drive heads, the best technique is this;

Put a LOT of isopropyl alcohol on the cleaning disk. I mean SOAK it, then stick it in the drive. It won't spin, of course, because the alcohol is sticking the cleaning wafer to the case.

Let it sit there for, oh, 20 minutes, half an hour and then access the drive for about 10 minutes.

If it doesn't work after that, dirty heads aren't your problem.

As for the USB to SCSI cable (if they even exist), I have NO idea if or how that would work. I just fix 'em :)

Terry Yager
September 14th, 2007, 04:15 PM
I have somewhere (I've seen it recently), what appears to be an external 3.5" floppy drive with a SCSI interface. The case is styled to match early Mac peripherals. Does this sound useful? (If so, I'll dig it up again).


September 14th, 2007, 04:24 PM
Thanks, but I'm going to try and give it a good clean first...

I'll let you know how I get on.

September 14th, 2007, 08:20 PM
I have somewhere (I've seen it recently), what appears to be an external 3.5" floppy drive with a SCSI interface. --T

T, if you told me "I have somewhere (I've seen it recently), what appears to be Jimmy Hoffa" I wouldn't be surprised in the least.

BTW, package arrived today, thanks for all the neat toys. I'll catch up with you this weekend.

Terry Yager
September 15th, 2007, 06:47 AM
Yeah, well 'somewhere' is getting smaller these days. The MysteryMound has shrunk to just a couple-three cubic yards of stuff to go through. Mr. Hoffa may be in there somewhere, but I'm pretty sure Elvis isn't...the pile ain't that large!


November 6th, 2007, 04:31 AM
I've tried cleaning the drive to death - but unfortunately no joy.

The internal 3.5" floppy drive has the following identification...

Sony Model MP-F75W-02G

and a sticker with

and a BarCode...

any help in locating a working replacement would be appreciated.

November 6th, 2007, 05:03 AM
Why not just buy a replacement floppy drive :confused:


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