if you read it, you’ll know that there isn’t a high-power red laser diode in this particular drive! So, you can save 10+ minutes and use that time to find a drive that actually has one 🙂 Still, there is some other interesting stuff in there, so check out the pictures and more comments. And post your if you have them, too.Most of me teardowns so far are laptop drives. One of the reasons I disassemble so many laptop drives is because they are very cheap and plentiful on eBay in the broken, for parts, section. I guess they do get more abuse and break more often. That’s just my guess. in any case, they are not only cheap themselves but they are also not that expensive to ship, so it looks like a win/win.
Laptop parts are rather tiny though, and it makes it rather difficult to deal with them for DIY projects purposes but if you are not deterred, you’ll find all the same parts you’ll usually find in a desktop drive, sans the small DC motor that drives the CD tray – laptops usually don’t have one. Well, they do sometimes have slot loading DC motor, even tinier ones.
So, here is a list of parts that could be found in this particular drive:
- A small bipolar stepper motor directly coupled to a worm screw. The worm screw has a 2mm lead as opposed to 3mm lead common in desktop drives. So, if this drive is also wound for 20 steps per revolution (note to self to check on that), it may provide 1.5 times better resolution than a worm drive harvested from a desktop DVD drive
- All the corresponding linear rail hardware with springed teeth engaged into the worm drive. The rails provide the usual 1.5″ range of movement, pretty much as in any drive based on 120mm CD form factor
- No high power red laser diode but a relatively high powered (100mW optical output or just about) near-infrared 760nm laser diode. It may not be very useful for a CNC cutter project due to lower power but can easily burn and scar someone’s retina, so it’s not to be messed with, at least not until all the safety precautions are taken.
- There is the usual three-phase brushless DC spindle motor but it’s rather difficult to remove properly – its bracket also holds one of the linear rails in place. A design flaw from our DIY parts treasure hunt perspective. I guess something can be done about it – a small metal bracket of sorts installed in place.
- A solenoid with less than 1mm movement that used to unlock the CD tray so it can spring out of the laptop’s case. it’s usually on the same flexible ribbon cable with a tiny-tiny green LED and a membrane pushbutton. I don’t know why I list these. Well, if you’re into designing very small stuff, you may be able to use those
- There are 3.3V and 1.8V voltage regulators on the PCB, usually of the 1117 family
- There is a handful of other components, mostly ribbon cable connectors and tiny limit switches that can be desoldered with extreme care.
- Should I also mention that a laptop drive also has a good amount of sheet aluminum and some mild steel in it, useful for custom brackets, cases and such?
So, anyways, that’s it for this drive. There was nothing special about it, I just had photos handy. But if you were looking at Toshiba TS-L462 as a donor drive for a CNC cutter project, I would give it a 3 out of 5.