Re: MFM drive gone nuts

From: Clockmeister <>
Date: Tue, 22 Jul 2014 06:29:24 +0800
Message-ID: <>
On 22/07/2014 2:06 AM, wrote:
> On 2014-07-21 at 17:51:30, MikeS ( wrote:
>> IBM's introduction of the twisted cable and splitting the interface into
>> separate A/B and C/D cables made it possible to turn each of the four
>> possible drive motors on and off independently,
> Of course it is not the only possible "solution"
>> largely avoiding the
>> start-up latency by turning on early and delaying turn-off.
>> SD is certainly entitled to prefer fiddling with jumpers and needlessly
>> spinning unselected diskettes,
> "Fiddling" takes less than a minute.
>> but at the time most folks thought individual
>> motor control and jumperless installation were a good idea, not at all
>> "stupid" or "utterly sick"; since few people made their own cables, whether
>> it had a twist or not wasn't usually an issue at all.
>> Maybe cutting his fingers on cheap cases and being unable to find a way to
>> route cables is the reason for SD's passionate disdain, but I don't think
>> that's really the fault of the twist... ;-)
> Yes, I detest the "PC engineering solutions" big time. There is more than this one. And to give credit where credit is due - CBM is not free of such "solutions" either. But my scars (yes, to these days) ARE caused also by that twist. A common situation: this drive has to be "A" and this has to be "B" and can't be swapped. OK - but the cable is too short to reach the upper drive with the middle connector. Hm.. let's go and get longer cable (who will pay for that?) OK - got the longer cable. Nice, now I can plug the "near" connector to the upper drive but.. uh-oh the "lower" drive is close but its connector is directly below the upper one and now covered by the cable! OK let's route this thing around that connector... damn - even if I strain the cable to its limit I still can't twist it so as to safely reach the lower connector so that... f..k another scar! Band-aid in place? OK, now how do I do this? The cable from the board to the upper drive is now long enough and has some buffer - let's move the connector down on the cable. Damn - they are not meant for removal.. Go and get a new one now (who is going to pay for it? me going, forget the connector) OK - got a new one but no proper tool. Luckily I managed to master a method for cramping them w/o proper tool.. OK - now I have three connectors (or two and ugly holes in the cable) and can eventually somehow "fiddle" with the ribbon to connect those things in the order which is enforced on me.
> By that time I'd have "fiddled" with 20 drives and their jumpers. Really. And wouldn't spill any blood around either.

I installed floppy drives and built and repaired PC's for years and of 
all the issues to be had floppy cables wasn't one that would rate a 
mention. Neither was spilling blood come to think of it.

I don't see how cable length was any less an issue whether you had a 
twist or not but hey we are all different.

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Received on 2014-07-21 23:00:03

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