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Old July 21st, 2006, 10:56 AM   #16
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I have had noisy CPU fan motors on older machines.

(I don't know what the new ones are like. Likely they will be a similar design but if they are a ball bearing motor, then the following cure is not valid though dry ballbearings might be recovered for a while by the method.)

My CPU motors were cheaper ones. The bearings were not two but one, a single oilite bush (sintered bronze or similar to the more enginerrically minded.)

There is a correct grade of oil to use for these and fairly hard to find as a single drop which is all that is required. So I made do with a drop of automatic tranmission oil dipped out of the power steer on the car.

To get at the bearing is simple. On the rear of the motor, fortunately the side facing you as it sits on the board, is a silver label carrying the printed motor brand or model number.

This means you don't have to pull the motor off the CPU and risk breaching the conductive material which transfers heat from the CPU to the metal heatsink.

Tease and peel that label off and beneath, you find a short shaft end and around it a bearing. There may be likely a small "E" clip as well.

Take a match stick or satay skewer. Chew the end so it begins to look a bit like a paintbrush just enough to grip the oil drop without it rolling back down the stick. (Don't slobber all over it but keep it dry. - corrosive saliva and good steel are not meant for each other.)

Pick up a drop of oil with the stick. Place the oil against the shaft / bearing edge. - done.

The label may not go back on. Best if it is refastened with a bit of stickytape but not essential - just helps to keep the house-dust out. - good for another 12 months???

It will periodically require re-doing as the auto transmission oil does not wick into the sintered bronze bush as the correct grade of oil does and eventually becomes one with the worn material and hardens around the outside of the bearing.

The power supply fans can be similar, but venturing in there inside the power supply box also puts you in harms way due to the high primary voltages which reside in that "not user serviceable" no go area.

So going in there is most definitely NOT recommended.
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Old July 21st, 2006, 12:57 PM   #17
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Thanks for all the added input.

I haven't done anything with the problem so far since I've been so darn busy using the computer (for editing) and can't stop at this time. Right now the whine is at a moderately loud drone. I thought of the hard drive as a possible problem, and I've learned to back up all the critical stuff >every day<. When there's a lull in using the computer I might just have it checked out, since I'm no techno-geek. What hard drive would you recommend? I think I have a Western Digital.

Anyway, we're all learning more about fans here. :D
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Old July 21st, 2006, 01:04 PM   #18
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Search a site like newegg.com for drives. I only buy drives with a 5 year warranty, since it shows the manufacturer has faith in the drive. Any of the big names should be similar, but at the moment I've been buying a lot of Western Digital drives. Seagate would be another good choice.

For the record, they are pretty easy to replace, if you decide to DIY it. Just make sure you get the correct type of interface... SATA is the new thin cable, ATA is the older wide, flat ribbon cable.
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Old July 21st, 2006, 03:52 PM   #19
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I see--match a new hard drive with the original interface. My computer is from 2004--would that likely be SATA?
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Old July 21st, 2006, 04:09 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Rivadue
I see--match a new hard drive with the original interface. My computer is from 2004--would that likely be SATA?
Probably not, SATA has gotten much cheaper over the last year or so... but to be sure, open the case and look at how the drive is connected to the motherboard. A wide, usually gray, flat ribbon like wire is NOT SATA, the cable and connectors are about 2 inches wide. The SATA connector is about 1/2 inch wide on a cable, usually black, about the same thickness as a normal power cable...
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Old July 21st, 2006, 06:10 PM   #21
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I would bet that your computer has the wide gray ribbon connector. When you shop for the hard drive look at the Western Digital Raptor - very fast (10,000 - but costly). The most common speed for desktop pc hard drives is 7200 rpm, I wouldn't get anything slower, and Western Digital, Seagate, Maxtor, Hitachi all have users who swear by them. EIDE hard drives take the flat ribbon cable. Most hard drives come with instructions on how to put them in your computer. You will need the drivers that came with your motherboard, plus any additional drivers for your other devices. WinXPpro with service pack 2 can be bought in a OEM version for around $160 if you need to upgrade your OS. When I first started building computers I found some guys at the local computer store who were willing to help me out - go to the DIY divison and ask if they have built their own rig. Some would even draw me diagrams!

The two most common pieces of the computer that I have had fail are the hard drive and the power supply.

Hope this helps.

Leslie
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Old July 24th, 2006, 06:29 PM   #22
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Thanks; I've been very busy lately but will continue looking into all this.
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