CMC/S3 mod, by Matt Fielder
The Hard Drive mod
I knew that I wanted to attempt one of the most difficult mods in the book - the hard drive window mod.
This mod has claimed the lives of many a hard drive over the years through dust and scratches. This involves removing the old tops of the hard drives and replacing them with a new custom cover.
This is incredibly difficult to do whilst keeping the drives dust free, which is essential for operation. I decided to set up a 'clean room' tub, which ended up taking about 8 hours to buy and build from scratch, although the concept of the clean room itself is actually pretty simple.
The clean room was made for a mere $13, and is simply an 18 gallon tub from WalMart, some latex dish gloves, some plexi and gaffer tape. I followed this tutorial
After having built the box, I gave it a super thorough cleaning with Windex to remove all traces of dust - this cleaning process took about an hour, but is key to keeping the drives healthy.
After building the box make sure to include the following in the box before sealing it: a torque driver for the hard drive screws, as well as a ziplock bag for each of the drives you intend to be working with (oh, and the drives themselves, obviously!). You can use baby oil to help slip your hands into the gloves.
With the torque screwdriver in hand, it was time to get to work on the drives. A word of advice: never pull on a hard drive cover if it won't come undone. There is a reason that it won't detach easily, and that is that there are usually screws hidden behind a label.
Once I had the cover off it was a case of sliding the hard drives into their new, temporary (zip-locked) homes.