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[ The PC Guide | Systems and Components Reference Guide | Floppy Disk Drives | Floppy Disk Drive Construction and Operation ]

Spindle Motor

The spindle motor on the floppy is what spins the floppy disk when it is in the drive. When the disk is inserted, clamps come down on the middle of the disk to physically grasp it. These clamps are attached to the spindle motor, which turns the disk as it spins. The speed of the spindle motor depends on the type of floppy drive:

 

360 KB 5.25"

1.2 MB 5.25"

720 KB 3.5"

1.44 MB 3.5"

2.88 MB 3.5"

Spindle Speed

300 RPM

360 RPM

300 RPM

300 RPM

300 RPM

The very slow spindle speeds used for driving floppy disks is another major reason their performance is so poor compared to other media, since the spindle speed affects both latency and data transfer rate. It is this slow speed however that allows the heads to ride contacting the surface of the media without causing the floppy disk's magnetic coating to wear right off. The spindle motor on a floppy also uses very little power and generates very little heat due to its simple needs.

Next: Disk Change Sensor


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