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Old 30 June 2009, 18:13   #1
quantum112
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Unhappy Vesalia A500 Drive

Wow, just when I thought this whole A500 part replacement thing couldn't go wrong in any other place, here we go again. The drive I received from Vesalia today is giving me a headache. Here's what's wrong with it: first of all, this thing costs 20 €. It is labeled as an A500 replacement floppy drive. Being a replacement, you'd expect it to just slip right in and screw it down, right?
Wrong. The first problem here is the floppy ejection button, when I saw it, my first reaction was: you got to be kidding me? The original ejection button is a small plastic bit that obviously comes no where near out of the Amiga so you can't use it. So what they did (or whoever made it) is simply glue another bigger peace on it to stick out of the button hole. This would be a pretty efficient solution if it actually FIT. Basically it's about 3 mm wrong in one direction and you can't place it down or close the case. I took it down and voila, it didn't take much for the whole thing to break. Some tough glue, it must be. Then when I tried to actually install the floppy drive I noticed there were no standoffs for the screws on the bottom of the case to screw into. I simply didn't get any. How I am supposed to mount the drive without them I have no idea, but good thing I still had my old drive. Of course with the usual trend of things, when I used these the drive was about 5 mm too low and it was impossible to insert a disk with the case closed. I found a second pair of standoffs I used on my PC and had to grind them to about 1.3 mm length to get the floppy drive at the appropriate level so I can actually insert a disk. Luckily, the drive works when connected (or at least I can hope, it goes tick-tick and more or less does something when you insert a disk; a blank one, FYI, since my old drive buggered up my Workbench disk, that's another 10€ I'll have to spend). On top of that the drive has no label, just some serial number, and I have no idea which company even made it. Now what the hell am I going to do with that button I have no idea. Normal glue doesn't do much good. Maybe I could try hot melt glue or something? I swear I've never had so many problems with a computer in my life. The worst part is the constant waiting, cause I pretty much can't get any parts around where I live, and for 2 months I've been waiting for parts from UK, Germany, USA...etc., to arrive.
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Old 30 June 2009, 18:24   #2
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Hi quantum112,

Getting replacement floppy drives for Amigas is a real problem.

See this post:
http://eab.abime.net/showpost.php?p=562331&postcount=3

This was a floppy drive from Amigakit, but there's no information about the type of glue used.

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Old 30 June 2009, 18:31   #3
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Hot melt glue should do it...I need to find my old gun for that though.
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Old 30 June 2009, 18:39   #4
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Yes. The best solution would be if you could somehow glue the eject button from your original floppy drive onto the new one.
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Old 30 June 2009, 21:08   #5
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The glue idea is off...there is just too little contact surface between the two bits of plastic to adhere properly..
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Old 30 June 2009, 21:33   #6
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Superglue can be very good sometimes - even on small contact areas. Then, having got it attached, you can build strength using epoxy resin or some such.
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Old 01 July 2009, 15:41   #7
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Nah, nothing works, the contact area is about 1mm square, you can forget it. Anyways, I opened up the floppy and it's just a modified PC drive, with solder wires going all over the ICs. That's what they're selling. Very, very, unproffesional. That is no "replacement drive", I did that by myself for nothing from some online instructions, and it worked on an Alps Electric drive, but just like this the ejection button didn't fit. Paid 19.99 for their worthless glue job. How pathetic. I am seriously not buying from there again. I found someone local who's gonna supply me Workbench disks via post for free, and I'll use the software to align my old drive. I'm going to buy a nice external floppy drive just in case this one starts acting up again and look on auctions for a cheap internal one as backup.
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Old 01 July 2009, 19:15   #8
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A nice model to modify are the actual models made by Mitsumi, they have the eject button on almost the right place.
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Old 01 July 2009, 20:15   #9
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My A500-040 used to have an eject button. I just removed that sucker and jammed a Philips screw right in the metal eject-button-holder. Works much better than the eject button, actually.

"Oh no, now I have to spend ANOTHER 10€!"

20€ is fucking CHEAP for a replacement drive. And you must be very poor if you whine about spending a whopping 30€ when a computer needs repair. You sure you don't want to whine about the original floppy drive too, "only holding up for 20 years, wtf is with that!?"

There. Glad I got it out of my system. Only sometimes I think it's silly how some people whine about NOS/refurbished parts, and then the next day go out and buy some mobile phone or gadget for 300€ that they will use for a year or two until fashion demands something else.
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Old 01 July 2009, 21:02   #10
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oh god!!!! i feel with u m8
I ordered one of those so called replacement drives for my a500 aswell some months back and u are right, they suck!!!! first off it didnt fit well, like yours m8 and secondly it won't boot those notorious disks with custom bootblocks, and thats pretty much ALL a500 stuff out there, wtf!!!! So I ended up getting my hands on some other a500's untill one came along with a working floppy drive and yea the replacement drive isn't replacing anything yet and probly never will
So i feel with u m8, I hope it works out for u in the end though
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Old 01 July 2009, 23:44   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Photon View Post
My A500-040 used to have an eject button. I just removed that sucker and jammed a Philips screw right in the metal eject-button-holder. Works much better than the eject button, actually.

"Oh no, now I have to spend ANOTHER 10€!"

20€ is fucking CHEAP for a replacement drive. And you must be very poor if you whine about spending a whopping 30€ when a computer needs repair. You sure you don't want to whine about the original floppy drive too, "only holding up for 20 years, wtf is with that!?"
Well I'm sorry, not everybody has income like you people up north in Sweden. And no, 30€ isn't much by itself, but I already spent close to 100€ on it, and for that money, I'd expect any system to be working.

20€ would be cheap. For a real A500 drive, and one that works. Not a modified PC drive that I can get for 5€ here and mod it for free myself, like how I already did.

Besides, I'm lucky I managed to find a Workbench disk locally. Paying 10€ for a disk, is damn pointless. Especially when the disk is 1€, and shipping is about 10€. You can send those things in a letter. I don't know the last time I sent a letter for 10€, damn eBay sellers.

Quote:
There. Glad I got it out of my system. Only sometimes I think it's silly how some people whine about NOS/refurbished parts, and then the next day go out and buy some mobile phone or gadget for 300€ that they will use for a year or two until fashion demands something else.
I don't know what you mean by gadgets but if it's iPods or fancy stuff like that I don't have any of it. And I've been using my phone for 3 years, thanks.
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Old 02 July 2009, 17:47   #12
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nobody is forcing you to buy it.
amiga peripherals have always been more expensive than PC even if its the same thing.
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Old 02 July 2009, 18:47   #13
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20 euro for an A500 FDD is EXTORTIONATE...! Particularly if is a hack job.

A500s seem to go for as little as £5 - £10 on EBay...
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Old 02 July 2009, 22:54   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DDNI View Post
20 euro for an A500 FDD is EXTORTIONATE...! Particularly if is a hack job.

A500s seem to go for as little as £5 - £10 on EBay...
I know, in the end it's cheaper to just buy another Amiga and have it for parts than pay for everything separately, but I'd feel bad about the other one then However, Vesalia quite surprised me today when I told them that neither the SCART cable or the Floppy worked properly, I offered to ship the items back to them, they said it would not be neccessary and immediately refunded my purchase I wasn't expecting this to end in my favor either way. Well, tommorow I'm going to get another Workbench disk so I'm hoping this floppy drive can still boot it, then if it can I'll transfer over Ami Alignment Utility to fix it completely. As a backup I'll get an external A500 drive as well. I just hope nothing else breaks meanwhile, maybe after 2.5 months I'll finally see Lotus 2 on my TV screen?

Last edited by quantum112; 02 July 2009 at 23:04.
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Old 02 July 2009, 23:07   #15
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Well, that's good news!

It's great to know that Vesalia look after their customers in this way.

With their range of products for the Amiga and other platforms it's certainly worth their while to do that, you would think.

However, it doesn't seem to work out like that with all suppliers.

It's reassuring to know that Vesalia - one of the major players - are one of the "Good Guys"!

Edit: Hey, that Ami Alignment Utility sounds like a useful addition to the Amiga user's toolkit. Could you upload it please?
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Old 02 July 2009, 23:12   #16
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I agree. I may have been a bit too quick to jump on the "bashing bandwagon" concerning them, I know I'll definitely need their products sometime again in the future, and I'm certain they are a very good store, however one thing that wouldn't hurt is that they label their products a bit more carefully; the drive I bought was listed as a DD internal A500 drive. Since there was also no picture it's impossible to know exactly what you're buying till you have it in your hands.
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Old 02 July 2009, 23:15   #17
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Quote:
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However one thing that wouldn't hurt is that they label their products a bit more carefully; the drive I bought was listed as a DD internal A500 drive. Since there was also no picture it's impossible to know exactly what you're buying till you have it in your hands.
Maybe they'll do that in future. After all, most "retro" customers know exactly what they're looking for.
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Old 03 July 2009, 04:08   #18
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I still say 20€ is cheap for a new drive for equipment that stopped being manufactured 18 years ago! (Hell, it's even a good price for a refurbished and properly tested one!)

Actually, normal floppy drives for PC cost more than 20€ here...

It's the same thing if you try to get a needle for your record player, or a battery for your old laptop or mobile.

Extortionate shipping deserves flaming every day of the week, of course.

Just think it's a bit silly for everyone to want parts for their beloved old Amigas but don't want to part with more cash than for a pizza to the guys that run stores. Not that every item is reasonably priced tho.

And yeah, there are differences between countries when it comes to importing stuff yourself -- buying domestic is often easier since the prices are sometimes adapted to what people can afford.

Here's an even more expensive floppy drive specifically for A500 mobos, if you're interested - but send them a mail and ask first so you get what you want! http://www.ggsdata.se/se.html?http&&...p?search=10120
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Old 03 July 2009, 08:53   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quantum112 View Post
Well, tommorow I'm going to get another Workbench disk
It should arrive before weekend, I posted it on Thursday
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Old 06 July 2009, 21:30   #20
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Hello,
For those interested,
http://www.amiga.org/forums/showthread.php?t=48277
and don't complain about price because if done properly this modification is very time consuming. You can of course use your own glue & wires - if you don't want to pay/buy. Photos show that it can be done.
Vesalia should have done this job.
Anyone wants to email me any disk images they want me to test/try out?

Last edited by nishtek; 06 July 2009 at 21:35.
 
 


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