[Dshield] Dead hard drive disposal

Kenneth Coney superc at visuallink.com
Fri May 25 13:11:51 GMT 2007

Thermite is hard to find in the supermarket and too durn much trouble to 
make.  While collecting the powdered rust is easy enough (a rusty Brillo 
pad will give you lots), the powdered aluminum and fabricating the 
magnesium case require a machine shop and stocks of the metals.  Then 
you need to keep a PurpleK fire extinguisher around for those inevitable 
accidents.  As a much simpler alternative I have found that an oxy 
acetylene torch (oxy Mapp works quite well too) combined with a medium 
'rosebud' head works very well on hard drives and produces less splatter 
hazard than does thermite.  For multiple reasons you want the slagging 
done outdoors.  Stay upwind of the fumes coming off the HD case as it 
melts.  I usually do two or three at a time.  When it cools the 
resulting puddle can be hammered into a new shape, or simply thrown 
away.  If you don't have the tanks, or don't know what a rosebud is, or 
are restricted by local code from doing welding in your back yard, 
contact a welder via your local phonebook and hire him to do it.  It 
will take him about 15 minutes per HD.  Any human that can determine 
what was on the drive after the operation, is so far ahead of the rest 
of humanity in technology that it can safely be presumed a dimensional 
rift has allowed time travelers from future eons to cross over.

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