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olePigeon

5th Generations Jukebox Five Floppy Disk Mechanized Hopper

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Good news!  I finally got it working reliably.  I have to replace the gear on my floppy drive, but those arrived as well.  So I just need to replace the gear so it ejects properly.  My bitty floppy drive only halfheartedly ejects, and sometimes it doesn't eject at all.  So I got some replacement gears.

 

I was banging my head why it didn't have enough power.  So I read through the manual in the troubleshooting sections ... you have to have 4 AA batteries installed even when using the AC adapter.  I'm not sure why, but you do.  Maybe it provides some supplemental power.  Who knows.  But once I put in 4 batteries and connected the AC adapter, it works fine.  Loaded up a stack of floppies and it cycled through them. :D  Just need to fix my floppy drive and I'll make a video.

 

I'm also keen to see if any of the adapters are the rights size to attach to an external Apple drive.  Make a completely detached system that doesn't hang off my IIci's front.

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Anyone know where an STL file can be found for the gear?  I'd be happy to print a bunch.  @gnolivos I think you did a design that was available on Shapeways for a while.  Would you be willing to share it?

 

@olePigeon I'm guessing the replacement came in PLA?  I can print in ABS which should be more resilient. 

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3 hours ago, olePigeon said:

Aaaand replacement floppy gear broke. [:(!]  $7 down the drain.  The top gear part cracked when I slid it onto the shaft.

I have an extra drive, the sale of which has fallen through. Would you be interested?

 

As far as I know, the eject mechanism works fine, but no guarantees....

 

If you can, PM me if you're interested.

 

c

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Looks to be either resin or powder printed, it's not a filament.  Just appears to be brittle.  Maybe it wasn't UV cured enough? I don't know.  I have another floppy drive, I just wanted to fix it.:/

 

I'm going to do a tear down and deep clean a different one.

Edited by olePigeon

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SUCCESS!  I'll make a video as soon as practical.  Probably tomorrow.

 

I refurbished a floppy drive, so that's working well now.  I then used some 3-in-1 oil on the axels of the Floppy Hopper.  It sounded rough before, and now it's getting smooth.  Smoother every time I use it, so I think the oil is working.

 

I might just take the axels out completely and thoroughly clean off any old grease, then put on a fresh coat, but not before I make a video.

 

 

I got it to go through a stack of 5 or 6 floppies, inserting them, then ejecting them, dropping them into the tray and load the next one. :D

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10 hours ago, olePigeon said:

Aaaand replacement floppy gear broke. [:(!]  $7 down the drain.  The top gear part cracked when I slid it onto the shaft.

I had a couple fail that I got through Shapeways last year. They were good enough to replace them at no charge.

I notice now they're no longer selling them.

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I saw someone in Michigan had one of these, and it looked pretty cool and interesting, but I couldn’t find a useful reason to buy it, other than “just to play with”.

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No, no.  I was just testing it.  It was loading a disk onto the desktop, then I ejected it.  I've discovered that you don't need any special software to use it, but the software they bundle with it allows for some easy backup or bulk erasing.

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That is really cool!  If PC floppy drives had had automatic inject and eject this would have made installing the floppy disk version of Windows '95 or Office '97 (44 disks!!) an absolute breeze.

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I'm going to fiddle with the adapters and see if any of them fit on the external Apple floppy drive.  If not, I might try to 3D print one.  Would be cool to make a stand so it can sit off to the side as a completely self-contained unit instead of hanging off the front of my Mac.

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@olePigeon I tried it yesterday.  I have a slipping wheel as well.  The unit will spin until the two sides of the center piece are far away from each other, and then it will stop.  I can roll it back and get the two side of the inject mechanism lined up, but I'll need to secure my wheel to the shaft too.  What did you end up using. 

 

For me, it was just the one on the left (when looking at the unit as it would attach to a computer), the one with the single wheel that does not have the other pulley wheel on it.  The other shaft with the two pulley wheels seems to be fine.  Perhaps the two pulley wheels are one unit and the two of them hold on better than the one. 

 

I tried my SE | SE/30 adapter on an external drive and the prongs are too wide for the opening.  I also see a problem in that if the jukebox is flat against the front of the external drive, it will press against the eject button, which seems like a problem. 

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Also, how close to the wall did you end up gluing the wheel?  It seems that if I spin it manually, if it is just a bit off the wall like the other one, it doesn't seem to want to come off.  I'd call it like 1/16th of an inch or so. 

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@pcamen  I ended up not gluing it, but I can take pictures of the positions.

 

I found that the old grease on the screw bars was the biggest problem in preventing everything from running smoothly.  The arm didn't move smoothly or without some force, and it most often would get stuck either at the tension bar for holding the floppies up, or towards the end where it's supposed to just barely poke out the grabber parts.  It was also really loud and you could hear it sort of grinding.

 

I used some old fashioned 3-in-1 oil and liberally lubricated the shaft (it's a silicon lubricant as well as anti-corrosion.)  After I ran it a few times, it feed up the old grease and it wasn't nearly as loud.  Eventually it appeared to do a full run without issue.

 

Also, the metal switch bar where the floppy enters also needs to be oiled so the bar will slide down the hole.  Mine was getting stuck, and the floppy wouldn't push past the activation switch upon being ejected.

 

I'm off work in a few minutes.  I'll try to take some pictures and show the areas I'm referring to for lubrication.

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Thanks, much appreciated. 

 

I wonder if just applying some rubber cement to the shaft at the pulley location might help it stick.  That would be easily reversible. 

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Oil the screw bars, and then put a dab of oil for the hole of that switch.

 

The two gears are pretty close to the edge.  Just enough to keep the belt from coming off.

Edited by olePigeon

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So, good news.  I did oil the bars and the little spring, and put a little crazy glue on the shaft to hold the wheel in place.  It now seems to operate well. 

 

I tried it with my SE/30 I had up on my bench, but, wouldn't you know it, the auto-inject wasn't functioning.  I swapped out the drive and just haven't had time yet to try it as I am struggling with other issues related to getting a SCSI2SD working on that SE/30. 

 

I wish it was easier to hook onto the front of the SE/30.  It feels like I am going to break something one of these days, most likely the little hooks. 

 

I ordered an 800k drive to see if the SE SE/30 mount plate will fit into that drive bezel.  The Superdrive bezel is a not go as I mentioned above. 

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I've bent my hooks already, had to bend them back.  I'm worried about metal fatigue.  They get a little bit bent every time I hook it onto the front.  I think I'm going to investigate making a stand for mine so it doesn't just hang off the floppy drive.  Not to mention you have to get the upper doors just right so the disks don't land at a weird angle and jam the device.  Maybe 3D print a bracket so the doors are always at the correct angles.

 

The other problem I'm now encountering is that the axels pop out of their holders.  I guess the plastic has softened or something and they pop in and out of the holders rather easily.  So as the carriage goes in and out, the axels will pop in and out making a popping noise.  I'm trying to think of a good way to strengthen the plastic without breaking it.

 

Oh, I found that putting some lithium grease on the two tabs on the hooks that grab the disks helps it slide much easier when they hit the plastic pillars to spread the hooks.

Edited by olePigeon

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