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Making a BULK Floppy Eraser ???

gelpack

Jul 7, 2022
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Hi

I live in the UK and I am looking for a way of creating the title matter. 'A Bulk Floppy Eraser'. I have looked online and there are a number of old products for sale usually tape reel erasers, these will do but getting them from the US to the UK is expensive, also buying new or from china at high costs area non starter.

So. I was thinking how difficult can it be to construct one, as I understand it, the media must be left in a neutral state, so simply wiping a magnet around a disk does not do the trick.

It should be a coil which generate an alternating magnetic field, and start as strong at it needs to be and then reduces its power over say 10 seconds to nothing thus eliminating greatly any magnetic polarisation on said media, in this case a stack of floppy disks I need to wipe as they have been used on different systems to the ones I want to use them on and the goal is to remove any magnetic residue/markers from them so they can be reused as they are simply not manufactured anymore.

So if anyone can come up with a fairly simple design, then I can make it. I just don't have any idea about building things with coils to so something like this although I'm ok with general electronics.

Any help will be appreciated.

Thank you
 

gelpack

Jul 7, 2022
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Hi Bertus,
That's been suggested a few times, but the responses have been it is not strong enough, so I'm not really sure. Also this is in the US, so its a similar problem.
 

bertus

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Nov 8, 2019
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Hello,

Perhaps an old Radio Shack eraser might work:
For a more profesional solution have a look here:

Bertus
 

kellys_eye

Jun 25, 2010
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Curious to know what market there is for used, bulk erased floppy disks!
 

gelpack

Jul 7, 2022
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Hi Bertus,

Thanks for your replies.


The radio shack one has two problems
1.) It costs a fortune to ship it + Import duties.
2.) Actually just as important and probably more, over there you are running 110V we are running 240v. So unless it is a switchable supply that would mean buying a step down to add to the cost.

The Other UK one
Yes that would undoubtedly do it, but the price tag is likely too high. I might give them a call though.

I am just a hobbyist and just want to be able to zap old disks, so I don't need some expensive professional one.

Hence my original post.

I want to be able to make my own, and that's what I am looking for a design. If there is anyone out there who is able to create one, so I can make it myself.

In short, I know you need a core coil of wire around a calendar of some sort, and that effectively gets connected to the mains supply, but I guess I am just going to have to research it and have a go myself.

It was a long shot, and I appreciate your help.

Cheers - Gelpack.
 

bertus

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Hello,

Perhaps these page might give you an idea:

Bertus
 

gelpack

Jul 7, 2022
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Curious to know what market there is for used, bulk erased floppy disks!
The retro computer interested parties like restorers of old 40+ year old computers from back in the day. Amiga games added to magazines for example, there are still thousands of them knocking about, but they are often less useful or useless for other computers of the era.
Floppy disks and drives are no longer manufactured AFAIK, and reclaiming floppy disks from say an Atari or Amiga that you want to use on an Acorn Machine or others can give you issues. That's why.
I wouldn't call it a market as such, its pretty niche and as devices such as Gotek are making Floppy disk drives almost redundant so that requirement is getting even less. However, for archiving purposes and for general historical use and of course "Nerdiness"; Floppy disk drives and the media still have a use, not in the prolific way it used to be, but there is enough of it still going on still today.

Its not that you necessarily need to bulk erase hundreds of floppies, more that you need to erase them from time to time. Either way, you need a device to do it, and a bulk eraser is the accepted easiest way do do it, if of course you have one, or have access to one.
 

gelpack

Jul 7, 2022
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Hello,

Perhaps these page might give you an idea:

Bertus
Thanks Bertus,

I will look through and see if any links that are still active are useful.

Much appreciated.

Gelpack.
 

Martaine2005

May 12, 2015
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I have a USB floppy drive. It was only cheap. But obviously it will only do a disk at a time.


Martin
 

kellys_eye

Jun 25, 2010
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For any disk to be useful it also has to be formatted. As slow as the process might be, since you're not expecting to move 'hundreds of them'(?), perhaps using a program that 'washes' as well as formats them would be more appropriate anyway? This would also necessarily 'guarantee' them as being capable of reuse - mass bulk erasure won't do that.

ISTR that of all the disks I used (too long ago to recall lol) they were all received pre-formatted as delivered and in that sense gave me some assurance they would work - not that they all did of course but if you're planning reselling them it would save yourself a lot of trouble if you 'knew' what you sold was as advertised?
 

Alec_t

Jul 7, 2015
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If you have an unwanted shaded pole motor (often used for powering small fans etc) you could try removing the rotor and using the stator (possibly with a cut through the laminations to create two distinct poles) for erasing.
 

crutschow

May 7, 2021
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A small tool demagnetizer, such as this, should work for your purpose (according to the reviews).
 

roughshawd

Jul 13, 2020
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Do you know how the tape head on a magnetic tape recorder works? My take on this is extreme...
What it does, is swaps ends of the magnetic field to create changes in the magnetic isotope. It impregnates a signal onto a substrate.
The fact is that it's like most of these inventions, you really need the decoder to understand the encoder. did you stumble into a mass of cases of floppys you want a bundle for? Like how many are you planning on blanking and selling? Just learning to use them is a chore, they are kind of a connosuers portable mem for small files.
 
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