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WTT: two homemade 10 sector hard-sector floppy disks for VCF review

NobodyIsHere

Veteran Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2006
Messages
2,394
Hi
I am looking for someone to test and post a brief review of some homemade 10 sector hard-sector floppy disks. These are the kind used in NorthStar Horizon, NorthStar Advantage, Heath H89, etc. You can keep the floppy disks as all I would like to know is if they work and how well. Since this would have some general interest please post your brief review here good or bad. Obviously you must have a working hard sector FDC machine and be able to format, read, write data, etc.

Thanks and have a nice day!

Andrew Lynch
 

Dwight Elvey

Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2003
Messages
4,781
Location
Santa Cruz
Hi
I punch them and they work fine. If I have any errors, I throw
the disk away.
It is about the same amount of bad disk as when I use them for
soft sectored so I don't think my punching is an issue. They are
used disk I bought in bulk from ebay.
I use the punch I designed with the 10 holes laid out.
I have used my modified drive with the single hole punch
and marked flywheel with no special issues.
The only problem I've had with either is the occasional
hanging chad. It is not too hard to fix.
I use them on my H89, H8 and Polymorphic System88.
Dwight
 

glitch

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2010
Messages
5,008
Location
Central VA
Received the disks today and tested them. They both work as SSSD 10-sector disks with my North Star MDC-A4 controller. Test system:

IMSAI chass/PS/front panel
Byt-8 8080 MPU @ 2 MHz
32K Static RAM, no wait states
Dajen SCI for console
CompuPro Active Terminator
North Star MDC-A4 SSSD controller
North Star DOS 5.1S

I copied my N* DOS working diskette and booted from both homemade disks. I then imaged them with Dave Dunfield's NST and verified that the md5 checksums were the same as compared to a pre-existing image of my working disk. I then restored the images using NST and verified boot/LI/GO BASIC. Seems they work fine!

The only "difference" I noticed was a very soft rubbing sound when the disks were spinning. I don't know if this is just a quality of the particular disks used, or a result of the punching process. At $3.50 each from Athana, I'd recommend the hand-punched ones as an alternative!
 

kyeakel

Experienced Member
Joined
Jul 27, 2009
Messages
491
Location
Curwensville, PA
Does this mean you will be selling hard sector diskettes? Perhaps hard sector disk punches? If you want more tested, I have the Advantage you sold me fully working and I can test them.

Kipp
 

NobodyIsHere

Veteran Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2006
Messages
2,394
Thanks! That is great news! I think the disks will get better as I get more experience making them. Athana has basically cornered the market place for HS floppy disks for years and I am thinking this might be an opportunity. There should be more than one source of the disks in case something were to happen to Athana there would be no others left for anyone without a punch.

Have a nice day! Andrew Lynch
 

Dwight Elvey

Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2003
Messages
4,781
Location
Santa Cruz
Thanks! That is great news! I think the disks will get better as I get more experience making them. Athana has basically cornered the market place for HS floppy disks for years and I am thinking this might be an opportunity. There should be more than one source of the disks in case something were to happen to Athana there would be no others left for anyone without a punch.

Have a nice day! Andrew Lynch

I've found that when it leaves a hanging chad or doesn't cut a clean hole, I take my pocket knife
and put the punch pin in the hole. I run my knife ( already a little dull ) right up to the disk
with a curving motion to trim any excess off.
This improves the friction problem of rubbing on the inside of the disk envelope quite a bit.
After cleaning any holes with excess, I squeeze the envelope over where the holes
are. This seems to help as well for tiny edges.
I just made a set of disk for Philip in Japan so I have some first hand, resent, experience.
Dwight
 
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