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Hard Disk Dive 1 - Watford Electronics Revisited You may have seen Watford Electronics advertising new 30Meg Winchester drives for the BBC/Master series machines for 159 plus the dreaded VAT. As I was on the look out for a larger drive, this seemed too good to miss, and so on 14th July I placed an order with them. On the 18th of July, a large parcel was delivered by AMT, and on returning home from work that evening, I eagerly opened it. Imagine my shock upon opening the parcel and finding a Watford Electronics 30Meg Winchester that was obviously second hand and had been somewhat ill treated. They had even left the last fault note inside the parcel! Somewhat unhappy, I never the less decided to give it a try. Upon connecting the Winchester to my Master 128, I powered both up. The Winchester made several attempts to get its disk up to speed and failed miserably. Upon powering the Winchester down and then back up, the disk eventually managed to get up to its operating speed. I then tried to *MOUNT the Winchester and it failed to respond. As a last resort, I powered everything down and back up again. This time the Winchester managed to get its disk up to speed first time!, but alas, it still would not talk to my Master 128. The following day I rang Watford Electronics and explained the problems that I was having with the Winchester and pointed out that it was not a new drive. I further decided that I would try the drive on my BBC Model B that night. This I did do, but it would not talk to the Model B either. On Wednesday I telephoned Watford Electronics once again and explained the situation. I was given a returns number and instructed to re-pack the Winchester for collection on Monday the 25th. This I duly did, and then proceeded to telephone Watford Electronics every other day for a progress report! On Monday the 1st August a large parcel was once again delivered to my home. Once again I eagerly opened it on my return home from work that evening. This time the parcel was considerably larger than before, but still contained a Watford 30Meg Winchester. However, this time the drive was in immaculate condition. Whilst extracting the drive from its protective wrapping, I noticed that it had been left switched on! Alarm bells began to ring in my head. Had they parked the heads on the Winchester before packing it? Switching the drive off and connecting it up to my Master 128, I powered everything up once again. The Winchester got its disk up to speed in no time, so I tried a *MOUNT. This time I got a response, but it was telling me my worst fears. The heads on the Winchester had not been parked prior to transit, and had damaged the disk. The next day a further telephone call to Watford Electronics and yet another returns number and the Winchester was sent back on the 3rd. On the 12th of August, once again a large parcel arrived at home, and once again I eagerly opened it on my return from work. This time the contents had been changed, and I had now been sent an Acorn 30Meg Winchester. This was somewhat lager than the Watford drive, and the Watford drive was already larger than I had been expecting! So, that evening I decided to connect it up and give it a try. But wait! Where is the power lead for the Winchester? I double and triple checked all packaging and came to the unfortunate conclusion that Watford Electronics omitted to send it! Fortunately, the lead on my printer was of the same type, so I used that to test it. Finally, this drive actually works and is now part of my ever growing hardware collection. A final telephone call to Watford Electronics had them once again apologising, and on the 17th of August I received a power lead for the Winchester. Despite all the problems, Watford Electronics did eventually supply me with what I ordered, but wouldn't it have been better if they got it right first time! S Richardson K2O.