CNC Bridgeport Floppy Drive

edited May 2013 in cnc

The Bridgeport's floppy drive has become almost unusable.  Well, I guess it could also be the floppy drive on the Dell PC could be bad.  Either way, transferring files between the Bridgeport and the Dell is almost impossible. 

I've tried multiple different floppies.  Formatted floppies on the Dell / formatted floppies on the Bridgeport and always have files that fail.  The failure happens on the Dell while reading the files back.  The Bridgeport always seems happy, in that, no errors are reported when coping files onto a floppy.

Maybe a solution is to use Kermit (an old MS-DOS serial xfer program).  There is a nice serial port mounted on the side of the machine.  Problem is, can't copy Kermit onto the Bridgeport without a working floppy!  Kermit is 100+ files that take up 1.4 meg of space.  Note, the Kermit zip file is only 600k but there is no unzip on the Bridgeport.

Catch 22,


  • Is the usb drive not working anymore?
    We can also resetup the network drive so you can just copy files over the network.
  • Not working well, I would say.  Seems to work better if I only copy one file and don't use directories on the floppy. 

    Networking would be GREAT!  Problem is, the machine seems to be running DOS 6.2.  I have zero memory of getting networking going on such an old beast.  On the plus side, looks like there is already a network cable running into the machine.  All we need now is some TI person who remembers way back to DOS 6.2 days.

    Any ideas?

  • When I get some time I'll talk to Justin triplet and see which way would be best.
    We need to learn the machine al little first, it's been almost two years since I touched it.

    Brian W knows how to network it. We had it hooked up to the editing rig when I had it in the space.
  • Sounds good.  Thanks for looking into it.
  • So me n justin looked at it a little, he swapped the floppy and tried copying files. He still had issues trying to copy with the one drive, dunno if he swapped to another as I had to leave. Plan is to figure out dos and get the network running, maybe install windows 3.11 so you can just drag n drop. MAYBE.... Win95 :P Dunno exactly how fast that is, probably would take way tooo long to boot.
  • Might be easier to use Kermit RS232 file transfer.  There is a RS232 port right on the side of the machine.  I've got a version that should run on DOS 6.2.  These are really small files where transferring.

    Or, I guess there is a SD-Card reader/writer that connects to an old PC on the floppy cable.  First version Brian tried didn't work.  I think he said it was a cheap-o from EBay.  Maybe a better one would work?

  • I think that it exactly what Brain had tried.  The unit he tried is setting on the CNC computer table if you want to have a look.
  • When I find some free time i'll give it a shot. its POSSIBLE he plugged the cable in backwards :P Justin did that with one of the drives he tried. you tend to forget that issue with floppies after 30 years of not using them.
  • Great.  Let me know if it doesn't work.  I think Brian said there is a better brand available.  Cheap enough to give a try if the original does not work out.

    Thanks again,
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