Hitachi 1TB where the reading head is stuck out on the disc!
Cleanroom environment in plastic box
Rescue-it is from now our official partner. All cases where the cause of error indicates advanced troubleshooting and repair as well as complex tools we will move our case to Rescue-it for our recovery jobs!
In case of a suspected hard disk crash, it is important to find out what has happened. If the hard disk sounds bad or abnormal, it is absolutely safest to let it be turned off. This is not to risk exacerbating any mechanical damage to the hard disk's storage media, which reduces the chances of a successful disk rescue.
Fixing a hard drive with broken read heads is not easy, it requires extremely great dexterity. One has to replace the entire reading apparatus including the reading arm in one piece by hand. It is about ultra-small details and extremely high precision.
You also need to have a perfectly matching extra hard drive to take spare parts from. We usually call it "donor". It really needs to be a perfect match with the right production series (batch) and the same firmware (control codes).
If you do everything right and the operation goes well, the hard drive can work properly for a couple of hours. Enough to extract raw data from it and save data. One must have access to a particle-free clean room or a clean room box. One cannot open and repair hard disk in a regular room and then restart it. Then the hard disk can be destroyed very quickly due to small particles that are released through the room air.
These particles cause micro-collisions between the reading heads and the magnetic discs. Large damage can occur, which means that it is no longer possible to repair the hard drive - data cannot be restored at all.
If everything goes well, you can clone the contents of the crashed hard drive to another hard drive and secure the content after the read head change. If you have done a good job, it can usually become an almost perfect data recovery, ie you can save all the data intact.
However, the broken hard drive will never function normally again, but you will remove the reading heads again and can use these as spare parts again at some other time.