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Davong Hard Drive

KC9UDX

Space Commander
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Jan 27, 2014
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Lutenblag
I recently acquired a Davong Systems DSI A506 5Mb hard drive, complete with Apple ][ interface card.

I have no documentation for it, and don't know anything else about it. The last time I used a hard drive with an Apple was 1991, and I don't remember much of anything about that.

I plugged the controller card into Slot 4 (the only open slot in my ][+) and power everything up. Upon executing PR#4, the controller for some reason activates my 80 column card, and prints "DRIVE 1 NOT READY" to the screen, continuously, every second or so. The drive itself sounds very sickly, it cannot seem to achieve a constant speed. So, I assume the drive needs to be replaced. But, unless I can learn more about the whole system, I can't see replacing the drive only to not know what to do with it.

Does anyone know anything about these?
 

circuit breaker

New Member
Joined
Jul 30, 2014
Messages
2
The drive itself inside is probably a Tandon TM501 or -502 series drive. I found some docs (right here on this 'site!) but they're for the macintosh version (http://bitsavers.trailing-edge.com/pdf/davong/); I guess Davong lived long enough to make periphs for the Mac, as well. A quick scan of infoWorld turns up nothing but ads which don't tell us anything. So let's turn then back to what we can discern, the drive itself...

This is a pretty standard .pdf of the Tandon operational manual but I think you'll find it useful; at least I hope you will: http://chiclassiccomp.org/docs/content/computing/Tandon/Tandon_T5002_A_1-83.pdf

As you can see that's no standard AT ("IDE") interface, nor is it SCSI. It's probably kin to ST501 standard such as that might help you.
 

Call-151

Experienced Member
Joined
Mar 16, 2011
Messages
75
Location
Canada
can you post a picture of the card and the drive, as well as how its all connected together and to the apple. For my harddrive, i have it connected to slot 7 which is the preferred slot for hard drives as i have been told. Also you may have to change the hard drive ID to 5 or 6 if it has that option.
 

KC9UDX

Space Commander
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Jan 27, 2014
Messages
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Lutenblag
Unfortunately, I can't. The way it's all put together now prohibits me from readily taking it back apart. So, I won't even get to work on it for a while.

I can tell you that it is connected properly, as far as I can tell. There are several connectors on the hard drive, but only one connector on the card, and one cable. The cable is connected correctly as good as the pin numbers are labeled. The controller does seem to be talking to the drive, because every time "DRIVE 1 NOT READY" prints to the screen, the drive activity light flickers.

The only change if I put it in Slot 7 is that I get "DRIVE 1 NOT READY" messages immediately at startup.

I did find that if I remove the 80 column card, polling the hard drive card does not cause the display to go to 80 columns. But, other than that the hard drive does exactly the same thing. In fact, I removed all cards except the hard drive controller, and there is no change.
 

KC9UDX

Space Commander
Joined
Jan 27, 2014
Messages
7,468
Location
Lutenblag
The drive itself inside is probably a Tandon TM501 or -502 series drive. I found some docs (right here on this 'site!) but they're for the macintosh version (http://bitsavers.trailing-edge.com/pdf/davong/); I guess Davong lived long enough to make periphs for the Mac, as well. A quick scan of infoWorld turns up nothing but ads which don't tell us anything. So let's turn then back to what we can discern, the drive itself...

This is a pretty standard .pdf of the Tandon operational manual but I think you'll find it useful; at least I hope you will: http://chiclassiccomp.org/docs/content/computing/Tandon/Tandon_T5002_A_1-83.pdf

As you can see that's no standard AT ("IDE") interface, nor is it SCSI. It's probably kin to ST501 standard such as that might help you.

Thank you. It's nothing like any of those standards, as far as my memory goes. But, with that much information I could probably build my own controller just for diagnostics!
 

KC9UDX

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Jan 27, 2014
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I guess I won't have to worry about it anymore, at least until I run out of other things to fix. It just went up in smoke.
 

lee4hmz

Experienced Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2013
Messages
90
Location
Woodbridge, VA
Yeah, that drive is definitely a standard ST506/412-compatible (actually the latter because it has buffered seek). You could probably take a 412 or a MiniScribe 10MB out of a PC/XT and drop it in, though I don't know if the controller would be able to use the extra space.

As for the smoke...I'm wondering if the spindle motor driver cooked itself, seeing as it has trouble keeping speed.
 

george

Experienced Member
Joined
Apr 1, 2011
Messages
407
You don't have to worry about the extra space, you have to worry about the low-level formatting for/with this particular controller...
 

KC9UDX

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As for the smoke...I'm wondering if the spindle motor driver cooked itself, seeing as it has trouble keeping speed.

Someday I hope to find out. But, I doubt that's all it is, because the Apple hangs whenever it is connected now, turned on or not.
 

lee4hmz

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Sep 28, 2013
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You don't have to worry about the extra space, you have to worry about the low-level formatting for/with this particular controller...

If it follows SASI or early SCSI protocols, it should have a FORMAT UNIT command in there someplace. If it's a hack like the ProFile was, then things get a bit stickier. :/
 

george

Experienced Member
Joined
Apr 1, 2011
Messages
407
If it follows SASI or early SCSI protocols, it should have a FORMAT UNIT command in there someplace. If it's a hack like the ProFile was, then things get a bit stickier. :/
We've been informed that
Yeah, that drive is definitely a standard ST506/412-compatible
so it is a good old mere drive without any protocol features. Nothing SCSI-like in it.
 

lee4hmz

Experienced Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2013
Messages
90
Location
Woodbridge, VA
We've been informed that

so it is a good old mere drive without any protocol features. Nothing SCSI-like in it.

The drive itself is dumb, yes, but the external unit it lives in almost certainly has some sort of bridge board with an ST506/412 controller on it. The Davong for Mac manual says the interface to the Mac is RS-422 (!)
 
Last edited:

drneutrino

New Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2013
Messages
3
DAVONG for PC

DAVONG for PC

Found set of floppies DAVONG 1.2 Boot Disk and Utilities along with Davong Drive, Cable and Board. It does not power on.
The cable looks in sad shape. Will try and find 3amp fuse this week and maybe troubleshoot the cable for broken connections.
Any ideas of what to try? Anyone know where there is a specification for the cable or do you think its a standard one?
Its a 37 pin job one side MALE-3M3485-4000 and the other 3M 3485-2500 D type.
Cable has E.S.P.63-300046-001 X3

thumb_IMG_2270_1024.jpg

thumb_IMG_2271_1024.jpg

thumb_IMG_2272_1024.jpg
 

GiGaBiTe

Veteran Member
Joined
Apr 30, 2015
Messages
2,735
Location
Austin, Texas
Eek, that card edge connector looks in really bad shape. You should try some of that krud kutter rust remover on it:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000F6UHDY

I use it on old PCI/ISA cards, RAM and heatsinks. Just a tiny bit on a paper towel gets rid of tarnish and that green copper oxide to make the connector look near new again. On pins that are heavily corroded, I'll use this and then rub a thin layer of solder over it so the slot has a good surface to connect with.
 
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