This 2.5 inch Seagate ST9500325AS 500GB Momentus drive came to me with the symptoms of spinning up, clicking fast, then spinning back down. The search sound between the clicks was reported to sound scratchy. The client was a small business in Wichita that was referred to us by a local computer repair shop.
I opened the drive for an inspection inside my cleanroom environment and found no signs of scratches on the platters. The heads also looked good under my microscope. I re-assembled the drive and attempted some firmware fixes to verify what was causing the clicking and spin down issue. None of the firmware fixes worked, so I went ahead and ordered a donor drive to replace the head stack.
Once the donor parts arrived I opened the drive again and completed a platter swap. When testing after the procedure, the drive was spinning up, then spinning down, but with different sounds than before. I went ahead and imported the donor head adaptives, retested, and boom! Got LBA access and all data was accessible. I started the imaging right away and after a few passes had all the data the customer wanted from the drive.
There are certain times where the 1000+ head swaps I have completed in my career really helped me complete a recovery successfully. I truly believe that technician experience and knowledge, coupled with the right tools, is the most important thing to look for when picking a data recovery company.
If you would like me to help recover the data from your drive, feel free to give me a call to discuss your project. Or you can fill out my quick data recovery quote form to get the ball rolling. I look forward to working with you!