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  • I want to cut my pc hard disk in half

    Hi

    The title says it all.

    I am sooooo fed up with Windows I am going to cut my pc disk in half...

    ...only kidding (sort of?)

    Anyway, I have this...



    inside of which is this...



    of whcih the "awkward" part when cutting in half are going to be the platters here...



    I want to cut the drive to produce to halves like this...



    The problem is that when I cut though the platters at the point I want to make the cut, (half of) the platters will have no support.

    I am hoping that someone can suggest a good idea/method to "regain" the support of these pices of disk platter.

    So far I have considered the following ...

    small pieces of acrylic cut/machined to "just" the correct thickness and glued into place

    expanding builders/insulation foam - not sure how "sticky" this would be, or how firmly it would how the platters in place

    silicon adhesive

    What ever method is selected, I would like it to be as "invisible" as possible.

    If the chosen method works well I would like to to this to several drives, each of which may be slightly different in consctruction. The "hardest" part will be to adhere the lowest platter, the platter next to the drive "base", to the base itself. There is no room for insertion of a piece of acrylic.

    I would prefer not to disassemble and then reassemble the platters as this would be an additional time consuming method that may cause potential damage to the drive "heads" and cause many marks on the platters themselves.

    Any suggestions anyone?

    Thank you...
    Kind regards

    Peter

  • #2
    Fill it up with beeswax, cut, when done melt out.....

    Comment


    • #3
      For the bottom disc it might be possible to inject some clear epoxy between the disc and the base. Use a syringe with s stainless steel tip. You may have to use some very small diameter tubing to go over that to extend the length to reach the area where you would want the epoxy. You might use some insulation from solid core telephone wire- that's pretty small diameter. You can get syringes with pretty small diameter needles on them from a farm supply place, or even a drugstore.

      For the spaces between the other discs, use the same syringe, but make up some clear plastic spacers like you mentioned already. Drill a hole through the center of them, then another hole through the side, intercepting the first hole. Size the holes for a light press fit of the insulation tubing, then place the spacers and inject the epoxy. This way the spacer is placed before any adhesive is applied. Should be very neat. Leave the piece of insulation attached to each spacer until the epoxy has cured, then pull it out.

      You might want to use slower curing epoxy so you'll have time to place all the spacers and inject all the epoxy that you need. The first step might be to test the syringe with a short length of the tubing attached to see how long it takes to force some epoxy through the length of the tip plus the attached tubing- and to find out how much epoxy comes out per second or whatever. You might need to know how much is going to come out, since you may not be able to see it when doing the actual injecting, especially between the bottom disc and the base. Here you'll just be leaving blobs, since they will adhere to both surfaces and stay there by surface tension.

      When it comes to doing the cutting, I assume you'll be using a laser cutter, water jet cutter, or similar

      Filling the syringe would best be done by popping the plunger out and pouring some epoxy into the tube. I would give it some time to let air bubbles rise out of it, so you're not injecting air pockets- another good reason to use slow set.
      Last edited by darryl; 12-23-2007, 04:25 AM.
      I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi

        Thanks Darryl.

        I like the idea of the intersecting holes on the plastic inserts.

        The only concern I have is with the "flow" of epoxy through a small needle. The epoxy I am used to working with is Araldite (two part mix) that is quite thick and I expect it would not easily flow though a "needle".

        Perhaps the same approach could be used with CA (CyanoAcrylate) adhesive.

        Originally posted by darryl
        When it comes to doing the cutting, I assume you'll be using a laser cutter, water jet cutter, or similar
        I wish...

        No, I am going to attempt this with.... waaaait for it ... my horizontal bandsaw.

        It does do a good job at metal cutting and I hope (with a good blade) it will produce a good result. After all there is not going to be very much "exposed edge".

        The saw only has to cut through aluminium, a (fibreglass ?) circuit board and some die cast material, nothing too difficult for an HBS. At this time I am not going to cut though the stepper motor and steel shaft on which the disk platters are mounted, how ever I would LIKE to try that, depending on how successful I am in this first attempt
        Kind regards

        Peter

        Comment


        • #5
          You won't be able to cut the platters cleanly with a bandsaw unless they are very well supported AND prevented from turning. Filling it with wax and melting it out is actually a pretty good idea except the platters will never look the same after anything has touched them.

          This is a job for a diamond edge bandsaw blade. You have a couple of tough materials there, the fiberglass circuit board and the die cast alloy are both high in silicates and will take the edge off a regular metal blade pretty quickly. A diamond edge blade will cut a very thin and good looking kerf and won't try to snag the edges of the platters and other parts the same.
          Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

          Comment


          • #6
            This may or may not be workable, but bear with me.

            Back in the day.... The areospace folks came up with some sort of extruded aluminum honeycomb material. It was very thin, light and could support a good weight in the axial direction. (that would be on the ends of the honeycomb and not the sides) I think that it went into wing spars or something, and for that reason they had to be able to machine it with a 3 axis mill to give it all sorts of countours.

            So, how did they do this? It could be tough to hold without deforming the part and when milling then ends, the cutter would create sideload that would deform the stuff.

            What they did was place a piece of the stuff into a pan of the same height and fill it with water. Next, it went into a freezer and became solid. As I remember, they froze it to zero F.

            Afterward, they cut it on the machine. The ice mass could be cut by the endmill without the thin aluminum being distorted. When it was all finished, thaw the thing out and move on to the next step.

            So, the only thing that I left out was that the milling machine was in a large freezer with the parts and ran that way. Everything (less the operator) was zero F. But, if you are cutting this on the bandsaw, you might get away with pulling an ice block containing your hard drive out of your deepfreezer and start cutting.

            Some things to think about, ice is a little on the slippery side. A small wood box with a plastic liner to hold the water and hard drive would give you something on the outside to hold on to.

            Another thing, I dont know how old the drive is but, some of the old drives had galss platters in them for the "disks". And if the platters are metal, they could be hard. I'm sure that someone here has messed with them. Evan has a collection of hard drives from all the work he has done with computers. I'm betting that he has cut into one or two.

            So thats my 2 cents worth. Let us know how it turns out.

            rock-
            Civil engineers build targets, Mechanical engineers build weapons.

            Comment


            • #7
              I've opened quite a few drives. As far as I know the only 3.5" drives with glass platters are the IBM Deskstar series in 60, 75 and 80 gb sizes.

              The ice idea might work too. To hang on to the block I would just cast in a wooden handle or two.
              Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Evan
                I've opened quite a few drives. As far as I know the only 3.5" drives with glass platters are the IBM Deskstar series in 60, 75 and 80 gb sizes.

                The ice idea might work too. To hang on to the block I would just cast in a wooden handle or two.

                Gigs?!?!? I was thinking a bit further back. You know, when you got your first 100 meg drive and thought, "I'll never fill this thing!" -8088-

                rock-
                Civil engineers build targets, Mechanical engineers build weapons.

                Comment


                • #9
                  That's a pretty old drive, conner's was bought by Seagate many years ago.

                  Could be glass disks. I made a torque out tool back in the days when conner was across the street. Disk's were glass in the maxtor desktop then... At least some where.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Big ole plasma cutter would go through it with minimum hassle. From all the fuss, I assume you want to make it into some sort of art though.

                    Show us the pix when yer done. My vote is to use the ice.

                    Best,

                    BW
                    ---------------------------------------------------

                    http://www.cnccookbook.com/index.htm
                    Try G-Wizard Machinist's Calculator for free:
                    http://www.cnccookbook.com/CCGWizard.html

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I have no Idea if this would work, but its a route i would try to go as the ice deal is going to imediatly melt due to the heat from cutting, those disks will transfer heat imediatly and then slip, so unless you got a refrigerated cutting room I dont think it good, I would make some UHMW spacers of perfect thickness, then cut in halfs and install - then clamp the entire unit with pads on top so you dont scuff it, if UHMW is to soft and your worried about deforming the discs then go with delrin, Again, -- dont know for sure, but a route I might try to take, and also one you wont be rushed on and be racing against time...

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Shotgun at 10' with bird shot.
                        It's only ink and paper

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by rockrat
                          Gigs?!?!? I was thinking a bit further back. You know, when you got your first 100 meg drive and thought, "I'll never fill this thing!" -8088-

                          rock-
                          I remember my first hard drive, 20 whole megs of space, it was amazing!

                          If you intend to keep the platters in position as a display or whatever, use a hotmelt gluegun to shoot some glue in place.

                          It's not too hard to remove the platters without scratching them, a strip of paper slipped under the head will allow easy removal and replacement.

                          I'v always found it's MUCH easier to use partition magic to reduce hard drive capacity.

                          ken.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Pack it tight with brown sugar.

                            Machine.

                            Melt it out with warm water.

                            Apparently the military does this to install temporary sensor packages inside ballistic test projectiles. 20,000 G's.
                            Dave

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Somewhere I saw where a guy did a demo for waterjet cutters. He knew someone from Microsoft, and was able to get a couple of scrap prototype X-boxes. He used the waterjet to cut them up into the shape of the X-box logo. He then used the photos to show off the capabilities of the waterjet. There were also photos of other interesting cut-up jobs.


                              I also like the ice idea. You might want to get even colder - maybe apply some dry ice to the problem? Water won't get hotter than 100C without pressurizing, but it'll get colder than freezing, right? Might give you more working time...

                              -Mark
                              The curse of having precise measuring tools is being able to actually see how imperfect everything is.

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