More modding floppy drives

OK, so I still seem to be acquiring more old floppy drives to mod for use in Amigas. I seem to have a acquired a few more panasonic drives, as these seem to work as close as possible to a real Amiga drive. I thought I’d just note some of them down.

Panasonic JU-257A605P – I referred to this post. It mentions the A606P, but I assumed the A605P would be similar. That post refers to a type that has the stepper motor (the motor at the back) with a ribbon cable that has a ‘connector’ (as opposed to having the ribbon soldered to the board) . This is what I had. DS0/DS1 switching was really easy with this one as it actually had a real slider switch. So that was easily changed to set DS0. Then the other part was the RY/DC stuff (which is marked on the circuit board). That meant cutting a trace, connecting a small jumper, then running a longer wire to pin 2 of the 34 pin connector. I also traced where pin 2 was going and cut it at an appropriate point. To force the drive to HD mode, I just superglue a small metal tab over the part of the frame that goes over the HD sensor switch when a disk is inserted.

Panasonic JU-257A606P – So per that post , this drive was the type that had the ribbon cable from the stepper motor going to the left and soldered to the main circuit board. This drive was very annoying to mod. First you have to desolder where the stepper motor ribbon attaches to the board, then carefully edge it off as it has some tacky glue holding it down. Then disconnect some more connectors. At which point you can sort of rotate the board out to work on it … but its still attached at one end to a cable that leads to the front of the drive that makes it very awkward to work with. Not impossible though. The board is as per the main large picture in that post. You need to cut a trace and solder a jumper for the DS0/DS1 selection. And again with the RY/DC you need to cut a trace, solder a jumper than run the longer wire to pin 2 of the the 34 pin connector. Re the HD sensor, I did the same superglue mod as before.

Panasonic JU-256A108PC – I haven’t actually modded this one yet. It looks very similar to the JU-256A738P drive I have already modded.

Panasonic JU-256A738P – Used this eab thread for reference . There is a pic of a very similar drive here . Easy to mod. I did the same superglue mod to force the HD sensor.

So the panasonic drives fit very well in an Amiga 600 or 1200 case as the floppy button mostly lines up … and the entry/exit plane is mostly OK. They don’t fit well in an Amiga 500 though. However, I’ve never found a PC drive that does. For me (who does not want to butcher the A500 case), that just means removing the eject button, and using a screw driver appropriately inserted to eject a disk.

Sony MPF 920 -I have two of these. A nice quiet drive. They work very well, but there are a tiny number of trackloader demos that won’t work with the Sony’s. If you saw the eject button down the middle you can make it fit in an A600 or A1200 without wrecking the case.

Mitsumi D359M3 – I have two of these. One died after a couple of months of use. These generally work OK though. They are very noisy. If you want to use a floppy drive to make music, then this is probably the drive to get 😉