The most important tool you MUST have if data is irreplaceable
Swapping the read write heads from a functioning hard drive to a failed hard drive in the hopes of beeing able to retireve your lost data can be risky with some pitfalls that you might not be aware of... here are some of them
Remember if data is important please consider the experts!
This is a term used for transplanting a good functioning set of read/write heads from a matching donor hard drive to repair a bad set in a drive that might not be reading correctly.
First step in do it yourself hard drive repair
It is never a good idea to handle these components without proper static electricity precautions.. they are very fragile and sensitive to voltage.
If you are attempting a head replacement or head swap on a failed hard drive there are several things you should consider and be aware of:
Matching replacement parts can be a nightmare depending on model
It is common to have the exact matching model numbers and country of a hard drive
yet the parts have 2 platters 3 heads and read from the the top platter down & your hard drive has 2 platters 3 heads but read from the bottom up... there’s an instant waste of money on parts & who knows how many you will buy to get it right.
Finding the head screw under the drives lid sticker.
Many people have trouble finding this screw and end up bending the lid and putting unnecessary pressure on the heads with the risk of loosing original head alignment... remember most lids to hard drives especially 2.5 inch laptop hard drives are very thin and you can easily scratch a platters surface buy slipping a screw driver onto the platter while trying to pry the lid open.
Removing the Actuators (Magnets surrounding the voice coil of the read write heads)
There are several complications when it comes to removing the magnets, first of all they can be very powerful & also glued to each other. After removing the screws and lifting removing the the top magnet to remove the heads is half the battle... it is common that if you do manage to remove the heads that the final step to putting the magnet back on the drive turns out to be your downfall as either the drive jumps off the table to meet your magnet or it pulls the magnet to the drive hitting the platters on the way down.
Removing the heads
There are two types of head positioning when it comes to park areas off or on the platter of the hard drive.. there could be a plastic ramp that keeps the heads parked off the platter too the side which enables less risk to the damage the platters surface when removing or the heads are parked on the platters surface normally close to the spindle which means you have to slide the heads across the platters surface to remove causing a high probability of surface damage