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what to do with faulty hard drives?

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    what to do with faulty hard drives?

    i have several dead/bricked (not detected, doesnt show up or making constant clicks of death) and faulty bad sector hard drives. im moving house soon and need to get rid of some dead weight.

    i thought of selling them for parts or not working but they are quite heavy and shipping each drive internationally via local post is US$23 each. im using some of the drives as gym strength training dumbells by putting 4 of them in a box to make a 3kg dumbell. but since im moving i cant carry the deadweight with me. any ideas what to do with them that is cost-effective for ppl like me who are budget conscious? if there arent any ideas im afraid the most cost effective way for me to deal with the drives will be to send them off for scrap at the e-waste recycling box in my neighbourhood....

    Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

    sell the boards - people buy them for data recovery


      Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

      There's some value in the PCBs for data recovery, but they would take time to sell. You could try and sell them as a job lot locally, otherwise I'd say they're scrap.


        Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

        get the magnets out of them and scrap the rest . or maybe make clocks with the discs then scrap the rest
        Last edited by petehall347; 11-25-2021, 04:55 AM.


          Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

          That's what I do too. On internally broken HDD's, I take the board off and scrap the rest.


            Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

            Take the PCB off and save it. Curie the platters and bin it.
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              Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

              I take them to the rifle range for local law enforcement, they use them for target practice.
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                Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

                A number of years ago a guy was buying a bunch of used but stil good HDD 3 1/2 as I remember in the 60 to 100 gig range . At a local used comp. place. When asked he said they were for target pratice . I dont know if he was seoiuus of joking .


                  Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

                  Sledgehammer then to oblivion.
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                    Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

                    just one more question tho, if the hard drive is focked, how do i know its not the pcb that is causing the hard drive to be focked? if i sell the focked hd pcb then what if the buyer complains i sold him a defective pcb?


                      Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

                      afaik most drives store their settings on the platters


                        Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

                        Well, if it's not too late, I strongly recommend trying this out:

                        ... image taken from this thread/post:

                        Believe it or not, I've been using the HDD "bench grinder" above fairly frequently. It's very useful for sharpening things like dull drill bits, chipped flat heat screwdrivers, and sharpening blades. Also used it to smooth out a few acrylic glass shims I was making for a CPU bracket riser. The current sandpaper I have on there is fairly rough and will eat wood and plastic / acrylic, and aluminum pretty quickly. I also have some finer sandpaper and was thinking to glue to another platter so that I can swap between different sandpaper grit when I need "finer" sharpening. But if you have multiple HDDs, you can just make multiple sanders, all with different sandpaper grit. The neat thing about this project is that you only need an ATX PSU and can literally move/use the HDD grinder anywhere.

                        On a side note, if you do build one, make sure you wear safety glasses when using it. I've had mine grab a small aluminum piece one time when I was not careful, and it shot it quite energetically across the room. The spinning mass of several metal platters @ 7200 RPM is not to be underestimated. While it won't have anywhere near the power of a real grinder, it can still be dangerous. Adding a flat "table" surface in front of the grinder should make it safer and is recommended... but I'm too lazy for that.

                        Originally posted by petehall347 View Post
                        get the magnets out of them
                        That's another excellent use of old HDDs that don't have much value (e.g. low capacity HDDs, especially IDE/PATA.) Their magnets are pretty strong - great for extracting screws from deep holes in devices, finding lots screws (or other metal bits) on the floor or if fallen in a hard-to-reach place, and for magnetizing cheap screwdrivers that don't have magnetic bits.

                        Oh, and one more thing: rip the "voicecoil" on the hear arm. These usually have 5-10 Ohms resistance and are handy if you need a power resistor in that range. Just solder some wires to the ends and dump in a cup of water (distilled preferred, though not necessary.) That should make it able to handle at least 5-10 Watts continuously for a very long time... or at least until the water starts to bubble too much around the coils.

                        Or you can use the voicecoil as an electromagnet in a hobby project.

                        The platter motors can be fun too if you have a 3-phase brushless controller for an R/C car.

                        The PCB is a good source of SMD ceramic caps and resistors. Actually, on that note, if you have any old IDE WD drives in your dead stack, let me know. I'm looking for a particular motor driver controller for a dead 40 GB WD HDD.
                        Last edited by momaka; 01-05-2022, 11:11 PM.


                          Re: what to do with faulty hard drives?

                          Many years ago a guy told me he liked to hook 120v on small speakers . They used to make small hand held radios that used them. (1960s) He said they would give a loud buzz 4 a few seconds.