How to Build a Computer 28: Video Edition!

 

Coming to you taped from the Wastes of Wisconsin Winter we present a special video edition of how to build a computer. In this post I take apart a hard drive and look at the bits piece by piece. Thrills, chills, blood and laughter, folks this film has it all! And at a price so low I’m practically giving it away.

Folks, I’m going to let you in on a showbiz secret. I’m just the on-screen talent. The man who really made this happen is @SamRhody ! I’m deeply grateful for his work editing and clipping out as many “um”s and “ahs” as he did. And I’m not just saying so because he looks so happy holding a sledgehammer!

This is part twenty-eight of my ongoing series on building a computer, the “I ain’t no sissy man” way. You may find previous parts under the tag How to Build a Computer. This week’s post has been brought to you by Supper Club Beer, from the Capital Brewery. It’s not bad — says so right on the can! Supper Club Beer!

[First – Silicon] [Previous – Data Recovery] [Next — Electron Microscopy]

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  1. Jimmy Carter Member
    Jimmy Carter
    @JimmyCarter

    Empty BEER bottles… duct tape…

    Great video.

    • #1
  2. OldDanRhody Member
    OldDanRhody
    @OldDanRhody

    Small scars on the hands: the badge of a true field engineer.

    • #2
  3. Sam Rhody The Insane Member
    Sam Rhody The Insane
    @SamRhody

    Hopefully, if we do another video, we’ll have some of the technical problems worked out. 

    • #3
  4. Sam Rhody The Insane Member
    Sam Rhody The Insane
    @SamRhody

    And now that Hank has posted it, I moved the video to public and updated the title.

    • #4
  5. Hank Rhody, Meddling Cowpoke Contributor
    Hank Rhody, Meddling Cowpoke
    @HankRhody

    Sam Rhody The Insane (View Comment):

    And now that Hank has posted it, I moved the video to public and updated the title.

    Thanks Sam, once again, for your handling the technical bits so I don’t have to.

    • #5
  6. Judge Mental Member
    Judge Mental
    @JudgeMental

    No duct tape for the second injury?

    • #6
  7. Hank Rhody, Meddling Cowpoke Contributor
    Hank Rhody, Meddling Cowpoke
    @HankRhody

    Judge Mental (View Comment):

    No duct tape for the second injury?

    Oh it’s there, it’s just hard to see. If you’ll look at the shot where I’m holding the drive up to see the stator you’ll note that the fingers on either side of the drive are bandaged.

    • #7
  8. Judge Mental Member
    Judge Mental
    @JudgeMental

    Hank Rhody, Meddling Cowpoke (View Comment):

    Judge Mental (View Comment):

    No duct tape for the second injury?

    Oh it’s there, it’s just hard to see. If you’ll look at the shot where I’m holding the drive up to see the stator you’ll note that the fingers on either side of the drive are bandaged.

    Hank Rhody, the Les Nessman of hard drive destruction.

    • #8
  9. Matt Balzer, Imperialist Claw Member
    Matt Balzer, Imperialist Claw
    @MattBalzer

    Sam Rhody The Insane (View Comment):

    Hopefully, if we do another video, we’ll have some of the technical problems worked out.

    Like the editor?

    • #9
  10. Sam Rhody The Insane Member
    Sam Rhody The Insane
    @SamRhody

    Matt Balzer, Imperialist Claw (View Comment):

    Sam Rhody The Insane (View Comment):

    Hopefully, if we do another video, we’ll have some of the technical problems worked out.

    Like the editor?

    Well, better editors cost money, so if you want to chip I’ll do a better job. 

    • #10
  11. Nanda "Chaps" Panjandrum Member
    Nanda "Chaps" Panjandrum
    @nandapanjandrum

    Rhodys: Men, Myths, Legends…Gary McVey has it exactly right; if you guys were truly at the helm of American industrial capacity, there’d be no stopping us!  Love this!

    • #11
  12. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey
    @GaryMcVey

    Nanda "Chaps" Panjan… (View Comment):

    Rhodys: Men, Myths, Legends…Gary McVey has it exactly right; if you guys were truly at the helm of American industrial capacity, there’d be no stopping us! Love this!

    As always, Nanda says it eloquently!

    • #12
  13. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey
    @GaryMcVey

    A great show, and a fine host! It took me almost two years to get from writing radio scripts to recording a Tales From the PIT show. But the Rhodys leapfrogged past radio all the way to video! 

    • #13
  14. Hank Rhody, Meddling Cowpoke Contributor
    Hank Rhody, Meddling Cowpoke
    @HankRhody

    Gary McVey (View Comment):

    A great show, and a fine host! It took me almost two years to get from writing radio scripts to recording a Tales From the PIT show. But the Rhodys leapfrogged past radio all the way to video!

    That may have been a tactical error. I mean just look at that dork!

    • #14
  15. Qoumidan Coolidge
    Qoumidan
    @Qoumidan

    That was interesting!  I enjoyed the credits, especially the security part.

    • #15
  16. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey
    @GaryMcVey

    Nanda "Chaps" Panjan… (View Comment):

    Rhodys: Men, Myths, Legends…Gary McVey has it exactly right; if you guys were truly at the helm of American industrial capacity, there’d be no stopping us! Love this!

    Nanda’s referring to our James Michener-scaled five part epic of real estate, Playboy bunnies and capitalism, Northern Command!

    • #16
  17. Insipid Thatcher
    Insipid
    @Chuckles

    How many Rhodys does it take to build a computer?

    (And how many do we have around here!)

    • #17
  18. GLDIII Temporarily Essential Reagan
    GLDIII Temporarily Essential
    @GLDIII

    Reminder to self:

    Do not send computers for servicing to Rhody’s electronics repairs…. –NYTimes Review

    • #18
  19. Matt Balzer, Imperialist Claw Member
    Matt Balzer, Imperialist Claw
    @MattBalzer

    Slow on the uptake (View Comment):

    How many Rhodys does it take to build a computer?

    (And how many do we have around here!)

    • #19
  20. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Loved it, especially the credits. Not every film has a credit for dwarf wrangler.

    • #20
  21. Matt Balzer, Imperialist Claw Member
    Matt Balzer, Imperialist Claw
    @MattBalzer

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Loved it, especially the credits. Not every film has a credit for dwarf wrangler.

    You’d think they would. It’s not easy.

    • #21
  22. thelonious Member
    thelonious
    @thelonious

    I have no interest in this subject. I only watched because Hank is incredibly photogenic.

    • #22
  23. OldDanRhody Member
    OldDanRhody
    @OldDanRhody

    GLDIII Temporarily Essential (View Comment):

    Reminder to self:

    Do not send computers for servicing to Rhody’s electronics repairs…. –NYTimes Review

    “Some breakage occurred, there was a hard drive involved… That’s about all I got to say.”

    • #23
  24. GLDIII Temporarily Essential Reagan
    GLDIII Temporarily Essential
    @GLDIII

    OldDanRhody (View Comment):

    GLDIII Temporarily Essential (View Comment):

    Reminder to self:

    Do not send computers for servicing to Rhody’s electronics repairs…. –NYTimes Review

    “Some breakage occurred, there was a hard drive involved… That’s about all I got to say.”

    On those occasions when I have dived into the realm of the electron mad mouse house to fix those bits of mechanical expression of analog functionality that we bags of mostly water tend to relate to, and typical is the purpose of electronics in need of repair, I shudder at the guy who comes at the item with anything like a bench vice, hammer, or linesman’s pliers. 

    My extent of electronics repair is when I can identify the module who function has met it’s maker and swap it out. On occasion I have replaced discrete components when the word is out that it’s a known part failure.

    I recall when some outfit cooked a component recipe. Some might remember all of those bad capacitors that were sold by a firm that was stealing intellectual property from another firm and they, the folks getting ripped off, deliberately changed the composition of the capacitor’s insulator materials in the computer files the bandits stole to make the knock of parts.

    Unfortunately a lot of those parts found their way into appliances, and even a few spacecraft electronics modules.  I recall fixing an oven control board (saving $250 vs 3 bucks) and one of the modules on my son’s old Mini from hell. Seemed that heat made the capacitor’s “bogus recipe” dielectric expand, split the case, and spill their guts making them non electron storage receptacles. 

    • #24
  25. Hank Rhody, Meddling Cowpoke Contributor
    Hank Rhody, Meddling Cowpoke
    @HankRhody

    GLDIII Temporarily Essential (View Comment):
    I shudder at the guy who comes at the item with anything like a bench vice, hammer, or linesman’s pliers. 

    I tend to be slightly more gentle with these things if I’m expecting to put it back together.

    For what it’s worth I’ve never soldered new capacitors onto a component neither.

    • #25

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