3.5" floppy disks are dying in droves

By dhau

Paragon (1542)

dhau's picture

04-07-2015, 16:42

Hi guys,

I have several boxes of 3.5" dd and hd disks that I bought in 2003-2004 new and unused. I tried to use some recently and 2/3 of them are "bad track 0" and basically unusable.

Do you have similar issues?

Is there some place to buy fresh stock? I.e. disks that were made recently?

Is there a way to store disks over long periods of time without degradation? Perhaps in sealed containers with some chemicals that help preserve elasticity?

I know we have great alternatives like Sunrise CF and a multitude of Sharksym SD clones, but I still want to be able to use floppies if I choose to...

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By sd_snatcher

Prophet (2916)

sd_snatcher's picture

04-07-2015, 17:47

The first rule is to keep them dry. Humidity kills them like rust on an old car.

I always keep mine on separate part of the closed with a humidity absorber like Damp Rid.

But are you sure that the disks are the problem and not the drive? The drive heads could be dirty, you know.

By Grauw

Enlighted (7842)

Grauw's picture

04-07-2015, 20:22

I backed up some disk games recently (Xak (translated ver.), Xak II, Fray, Kyokugen, etc.), out of 20-orso disks only one gave me a read error, and I was able to recover it by re-reading it a little while later.

Also my own (and father’s) disk archive seem to generally have remained in working order. I should make some effort to back it all up sometime.

They were always kept in dry cool conditions. The games are on a shelf which does not get direct sunlight, and the disk archives are in cardboard disk boxes in my indoor storage space, before I got my own house they were on my parent’s attic.

By Jipe

Paragon (1345)

Jipe's picture

04-07-2015, 20:47

with drives contain a belt little relaxed some floppy disks are more difficult than others, or even block

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