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Saves Time
taking the disks apart ONE at a time and cleaning the surfaces in a soapy distilled water solution, then leaving to dry is not my idea of fun. the chances of mixing up the insides are too great and the Mrs. would like her sink and draining board back by dinner time.
Cleaning Solutions & Technique
Some people prefer a mild fluid like vinyl record cleaner, others prefer IPA alcohol 70% - 99.9%
It all depends how bad your disks are and how they have been stored, but the process is the same.
Room temperature would be kinder to the disks and need a milder solution like record cleaner.
mine were in a damp musty garage for several winters and needed stronger fluids as they had surface fungus and were mouldy.
I used "IPA 99.9% pure" on my mouldy screechy disks.
as my disks were musty smelling, i applied a little more pressure on the ipa wet micro fibre cloth and did 5 SLOW rotations of the dial, moving the cloth back and forth and re soaking the cloth to avoid dirt going back onto the floppy.
then with disk still in cradle, 3 slow revolutions without cloth to allow ipa to evaporate.
i also use x copy checkdisk feature to reveal which surfaces need an estra clean, track zero is outer surface and 79 near the middle. it clearly shows read errors, which surface has issues etc.
I was astonished to find the squeaky disks no longer made a high pitched screech noise and were actually being read normally by my drive without any read errors and then had a full set of workbench disks, saving me £15 and find the process quite therapeutic and rewarding now.
I always used to throw the disks away that had read errors, thinking they were defective, but actually I NOW feel they were just dirty and the read heads could not read the information contained on them.
Version 2
The 3.5" floppy cleaner is now V2
The spikey dial became painful to use after a while so was re designed to be more ergonomic.
as a bonus, I now send a free micro fibre cloth to get you started, so all you need to buy locally is a cleaning fluid as mentioned above depending on your scenario
Richard Brayshaw
I can be found on facebook in the Amiga and Atari groups too
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