[SOLVED] DVD drive stuck shut in old Dell Dimension 4100

silversmithy

Distinguished
Nov 13, 2012
326
6
18,785
0
Recently got an old Dell Dimension 4100 that I am going to hopefully use to run Windows 98 for retro gaming. I got it in unknown condition with no HDD. It powers on, but DVD drive is stuck shut. It wants to open, but can't quite do it. Using the paper clip method will push the gear back, but nothing else happens. Need to see if any other thoughts before I basically have to take both sides off and the front panel, (top latch not budging and hate to break it), to completely remove drive and take it apart. Also on a side note the tan plastic HDD caddy, metal HDD retaining bar, and tan colored back panel screw are missing and likely thrown out somewhere along the line , (what a shame☹☹☹). Anyone know where I can find any parts? Looked on eBay and only systems for sale...☹. Thanks for any help.
 

silversmithy

Distinguished
Nov 13, 2012
326
6
18,785
0
Got it. Thank you all. Yes I did put the clip in quite a ways and tried to gently work it back and forth. I have done this before with success in other drives, but no go so far. I figure I will need to replace drive, but was trying to avoid if at all possible due to avoiding breaking any brittle case pieces that will need removing. Thanks again.
 

silversmithy

Distinguished
Nov 13, 2012
326
6
18,785
0
Oh man!!!!:ROFLMAO:. Anyway. Have tried the paper clip method again and it's a no go. Not sure why it won't work.... Will have to remove drive and replace.. I have a sudden urge for PB and J.....
 
Reactions: punkncat

BFG-9000

Distinguished
If the tray tries to open but acts like it's jammed, you're supposed to insert the paperclip right when it's trying to open to assist it. Do it when in the BIOS to make sure it's not software locking the tray (yes, that was a thing 20 years ago).

It is a very common problem for the solenoid to lose enough strength over time that it becomes unable to eject the tray when no disc is in it. If there is some kind of cover over the spindle (often it's a round metal disc glued to the top of the drive, or a clear plastic one snapped into it. Either can be under a label sticker) then you are in luck and drive disassembly will not be required.

Simply remove the magnetic top of the spindle and cut out some paper rings to act as shims in it. Usually it only takes one or two to space it farther enough away that the weakened solenoid can open the tray easily, and still be thin enough to still allow the magnet to clamp onto a disc normally. The problem arises when there is no disc inserted and this magnet snaps onto the lower part of the spindle when the tray closes, which would require a lot of force to undo--the spacer just reduces the force required.

Of course the temporary workaround until you can get around to fixing it is to just leave a disc in the drive.
 

silversmithy

Distinguished
Nov 13, 2012
326
6
18,785
0
Unfortunately the paper clip is not working at all. I have tried numerous times. The drive is a Cyberdrive if I remember correctly and unfortunately it has what appears to be 4 bolts with a simple round hole in each keeping the cover on. No idea what tool I need for this....
There is a small metal warranty sticker front and center to the drive tray on the top cover. It appears to just be hiding another one of those bolts....I know I will just need to replace the drive but would like to make sure that nothing is still in the drive.
May be a stupid question, but if I have a thin piece of plastic can I force the drive open by getting behind the bezel and gently prying open. Not sure what else to do besides getting a hacksaw 🙄.
 

geofelt

Titan
Unfortunately the paper clip is not working at all. I have tried numerous times. The drive is a Cyberdrive if I remember correctly and unfortunately it has what appears to be 4 bolts with a simple round hole in each keeping the cover on. No idea what tool I need for this....
There is a small metal warranty sticker front and center to the drive tray on the top cover. It appears to just be hiding another one of those bolts....I know I will just need to replace the drive but would like to make sure that nothing is still in the drive.
May be a stupid question, but if I have a thin piece of plastic can I force the drive open by getting behind the bezel and gently prying open. Not sure what else to do besides getting a hacksaw 🙄.
That is what I was suggesting using a small screwdriver that is stronger than plastic.
You may succeed, but I think I would plan on replacing the drive regardless if you damage it or not.
 

silversmithy

Distinguished
Nov 13, 2012
326
6
18,785
0
The drive is a Cyberdrive 120D and there is a small round foil warranty sticker on the top center cover of the drive towards the very front near the plastic bezel. I am hesitant to remove said sticker though as then I shall have voided the warranty. Nooooo!!!!. Sorry, just kidding. This thing was manufactured in 97'. I tried prying open with rigid plastic pieces. Then tried paper clip with machine on to assist. Looks like it's time for forced dismantling.😐
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS

Latest posts