Question about SGI Silicon Graphics (P-CDR32-EXT) CD-ROM Drive

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SGI O2 CD-ROM drive tray repeatedly opens

So someone gave me this old silicon graphics machine - the cd-rom drive has this problem; if you close it with your hand instead of pressing thahe button, the drive tray will go in and then come back out. Repeatedly, as in the damn thing won't stay shut. I actually fixed this once by prodding something with a q-tip, but I think my luck has run out. It's some kind of design defect or something, and it's driving me nuts, because it did it on disc 3 of around 8 (I'm installing IRIX).

If you don't have one of these machines you probably won't know what I'm talking about.

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I am having the same problem. I haven't resolved it entirely, but at least I managed to get it working again by the following steps.

First, disassemble the part of the computer chassis around the CD-ROM drive. Follow the instructions for "replacing the CD-ROM drive" in the SGI 02 hardware maintenance manual. It can be done in 10 minutes with a screwdriver.

After you have gained access to the CD-ROM drive itself, take off the top metal cover. Then you will be able to see the tray and the white gears underneath.

In my case, the problem seems to be caused by some misalignment between some wire springs and the white gears. Note when the CD tray closes, the manual eject button (a black plastic rod on the right) should stick out, and the white piece of plastic with a triangular end on the left should push against the front of the CD tray.

Somehow, the gears failed to push the white plastic piece all the way to the edge of the tray, and the CD-ROM drive thinks the tray wasn't fully-closed, and ejects the disc.

To force the drive to read the disc, pull the white plastic piece on the left with the triangular end towards the edge of the tray. (Pull it towards you if you are facing the front of the drive.) You might need to use some force, but I can get the drive to work this way, even though it still "sticks open" half the time.

Good luck, and if you happen to find a better solution, I look forward to hearing it.

Posted on Jan 28, 2009

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