Ebay For-parts Ironwolf drives

I am sure there are tons of reasons why this is not worth repairing but I do not care about that

I saw these (pictured below) on Ebay and I was wondering if anyone has tried to repair a drive with this connector ripped out. It seems simple, 3 wires connecting to the controller/bios board, I already ordered 2 for $20 each just to try.

I am looking for any info on this.
What’s the connector for?
Why are they being removed?
How could I possibly repair it?

I will just try to solder some wires to the the board and see what happens, but there seem to be some deep holes on the drive that are hard to see from the picture as to if I could get a connection on anything in there.

Edit: tldr conclusion. The wires that were removed are for the spindle motor. The motor worked after repair but the drive had other issues. Pictures a few posts down.


Looks like the wire going to the motor inside.

IDK… an attempt to make the drive unusable to save the data? Stupid way to go about it if they want to make sure it’s inaccessible, but I can’t think of anything else.

Take out the PCB on top, get some wires that fit and try soldering it back on? Not sure…


The “connector” shown is actually the bottom of the spindle motor. Power from the board spins-up the drive.

Possibly shipping damage. One I’m looking at is flush with the bottom of the drive. Likely that’s the first piece to break if you drop a stack of them just in bags.

You can try jamming some pins (stiff wires) in the holes and hope you can get a good contact. If so, big blob of glue/epoxy to hold the mess all together and hope for the best.


So update and conclusion.

First picture is an example of what I had to work with and the following are some awesome close-ups of my good enough solder job.

The drives spin up normally but the heads were messed up I believe because they make a not great noise

I believe this repair was successful as far as it could have been, the drives were just bad in other ways anyway.

I ordered a few more for less than $20 each
But only because I want to try and get one working and see if the simple solder job really is good enough. After these I’ll move on as I could have gotten a few working drives for the money at this point and there is little else to learn unless I want to get into platter transplant or drive head replacement

Some cool macro shots I took after fully taking apart the drive.


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