Cleaning HDD Heads & Platters

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If i understood good, to clean platters from fingerprints is needed to find 3M Novec contact cleaner that doesn't leave a thin protective silicone coating, but i still not understood which one is good from 3M.
What about acetone?
Is all acetone good for cleaning platters?
Is needed to dry surface after using this products with special cotton (or similar) ?
 

LarrySabo

Member
Acetone has worked really well for me. Just dampen part of a folded cleanroom wipe that has been folded to make a wedge shape and wipe from hub towards edge of the platter. It evaporates quickly so no need to wipe the platter afterwards, at least in my experience.
 

pclab

Moderator
I must tell you my experience.
Once I needed to clean a fingerprint from a platter.
I tried several solutions: Acetone, IPA, etc. always with a cleanroom wipe.
The best result was when I cleaned the platter only with the cleanroom without any fluid.
Try it on a test drive first.
 

Jared

Administrator
Staff member
pclab":gwh7e1vp said:
I must tell you my experience.
Once I needed to clean a fingerprint from a platter.
I tried several solutions: Acetone, IPA, etc. always with a cleanroom wipe.
The best result was when I cleaned the platter only with the cleanroom without any fluid.
Try it on a test drive first.

I've actually had the same experience for cleaning platters. Just using these swabs and a bit of elbow grease: http://www.texwipe.com/store/p-838-tx761d.aspx
 

Blizzard

Member
Sorry for the delay, I haven't had much extra time lately. I decided I would at least check for residue today. I opened an old Seagate 160GB (in clean bench) and sprayed some 3M™ Novec™ Contact Cleaner on the platter. It evaporates faster but left almost as much residue as 91% Isopropyl alcohol. It seemed more difficult to wipe off the Novec residue than the Alcohol residue. I don't see any reason to use it. If I do any more tests I'll let you know.
 

300ddr

New member
Just to chime in, we have these and they haven't been too helpful in cleaning heads. http://www.soscleanroom.com/product/swa ... -and-tool/ (very similar looking to these that Larry was curious about: https://www.berkshire.eu.com/shop-our-p ... -tip-swab/). It could be that the heads are bad and therefore cleaning can't be helpful.

For cleaning fingerprints off platters, we use these: http://www.soscleanroom.com/product/swa ... room-swab/. They work well. First we try with just these pads and it's usually successful. If still dirty, we use Acetone (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007V ... UTF8&psc=1). First, we clean the dirty area with platters not moving, then finish it off by cleaning again while spinning the platters (gently press down swap, spin platters, keep swap depressed around damaged area). The "spin" clean is crucial.
 

LarrySabo

Member
Thanks, Brian. Just curious, does anyone use a small battery-operated screwdriver with appropriate Torx bit to rotate the platters when fixing stiction (or "spin cleaning" platters)? I hate when I have to do it in steps because I can only rotate the driver manually so far before I have to let the heads come to rest on the platter again, and assume it just creates more problematic sectors or wear and tear on the heads.

Edit: Something like this: https://www.amazon.com/General-Tools-In ... nk22237-20
 

300ddr

New member
Nope, just manual spinning using screwdriver (for stiction or cleaning) or a finger on a platter screw (with glove on) and turning gently (for cleaning). For some reason, power tools scare me in clean room. I think just the added weight makes things a bit more dangerous.
 
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