Picture of DIY USB "Hard Drive"
Using a dead Hard Drive, a 4-port USB hub, and a few Flash Drives, we will kill some time and get a few laughs from anyone seeing you use this.

You guys can see MAKE magazine's rip-off article of my project at:

Thanks for the credit MAKE, I really appreciate it....
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Step 1: Find a candidate.

Picture of Find a candidate.
Any Hard Drive should do..

Step 2: Dismantle..

Picture of Dismantle..
Take the Hard Drive apart...

Step 3: Compare

Picture of Compare
Make sure your USB hub will fit, either with the plastic case on, or not...

Step 4: Hub

Picture of Hub
For this purpose, I removed the plastic case.

Step 5: Install

Picture of Install
I placed the "nekkid" USB hub into the area where the platter used to be.

Note: I was only placing this temporarily, if I was going to keep this mod permanent, I would glue the hub in either using epoxy or hot glue.

Edit: I forgot to mention, if this was going to be used permanently, I would coat the circuit board with epoxy, just like I do with Flash Drives.

Step 6: Flash Me!

Picture of Flash Me!
Now add your Flash Drives, you may have to remove the casing for some to fit well.

Step 7: Button it up.

Picture of Button it up.
Replace the cover to the Hard Drive, and plug in!

Now you will have a "new" Flash Drive that will be sure to get some comments.

Also, there is a way, I haven't done it, but with a certain flavor of Linux, you can install Linux onto all 4 of the Flash drives in a RAID configuration, assuming you have all the same capacities.

Have fun!
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Quazaka5 years ago
I must say that this comes out very cool, here is mine :P
frenzy Quazaka4 years ago

have great news!

This posting has won today's "I Made It" Challenge. For winning you will receive a 3 month pro membership!

Thanks for using instructables!
amclaussen16 days ago

You still don't say how to manage this storage ion the PC, to make it appear as a single large device instead of several smaller removable drives...

Sperdog18 days ago

I want to boost the speed of my laptop while I am at home for gaming, would this be compatible with ready-boost and with different size flash drives? Also, when the drive is plugged into a computer, does it show up in multiple folders or are all of the drives storages combined into one massive drive?

bštrkalj2 years ago
if you open hard drive air will destroy him ,inside is vacum :)
HDD's are sealed at atmospheric pressure to keep dust out, as that pressure varies, there is a small plastic sticker over a hole that seals the case, but flexes to allow for the pressure change. :)
Did he say "dead harddisk"
you dont need a vacum to run 4 usb drives
gmgfarrand (author)  bštrkalj2 years ago
Negative, that information is INCORRECT.
DUST will kill your drive.
We do data recovery on the platters, and we do it on earth, not in a vacuum. ;)
Change Title, it says usb hard drive, must say someting like usb hub case
gmgfarrand (author)  kuronoKeitaro1 year ago
Over 640,000 views and you are the only one with an issue with the title?

It's not misleading, hence the use of "
quá độc đáo!
riekard5 years ago
so...does anyone know where to get dirt cheap flash drives???
ya i know u can get em at staples,future shop,best buy,u can even make ur own.
cool, but i wanna try and make my own, how would i go about it?? what do i need?
Nxtfari riekard5 years ago
um, thats what the instructions are for
riekard Nxtfari5 years ago
...this build doesnt mention anthing about makin your own flash drives
Xixfas riekard1 year ago
you cant make a flash drive
Nxtfari riekard5 years ago
Oh, sorry, I thought you said you wanted to make the USB Hard Drive. To make your own flash drive would be pretty hard. I mean, Its got over 100 pieces that have to be soldered together perfectly on a circuit board. You'd be better off buying one. They're like $10 for a pack of three.
Go to and you can get some incredibly cheap 512MB ones.
512 is as much as my old desktops ram size and it is pretty slow dont go with 512 man.
That's how much RAM my current laptop has... I need an upgrade sometime...
512 wont get you very far with any thing i got a 4gb microsd and other accesories came withit at target
Wal Mart
TSC irishjim684 years ago
Walmart does not sell flash drives cheap! Microcenter  is way cheaper!
shenzer riekard4 years ago
nowdays flash drives are 4gb for 10 so its pretty cheap
Ebay or dealextreme :)
most of time i get good deal from
check out here
Staples is offering 4 gig drives this week for $6.95 each
in china :)
R4MP4G3RXD1 year ago
Only 1 problem with this my friend. And that is that your making an ssd because there are no actual moving parts.
shinji2465 years ago
This is disappointing as I was expecting to see the actual hard drive being used and converted, however it still makes for a cool looking flash drive :D

thanks for the tut!
If you want to see that, take a look here:
PieterDC2 years ago
I'd think it would be unwise to ruine a hard drive IF it was still functioning espacially when you can buy a litle housing for them that makes them usb connectable for only 10 or 20 bucks, it's not flash but you probably have more capacity that way
mguima PieterDC2 years ago
If you do not run a museum, I think that is really wise dismantle an OBSOLETE electronic equipment if you can use it for something cool or useful. I´ve already dismantled an operational cable modem (the cable company provides one for free), DSL router, hand scanner... The only case I would be wrong would be after global nuclear war, when suddenly an old 386 with 40GB HD could become rare and useful again.
Except that after global nuclear war, the EMP would probably render your 386 useless.
mguima mguima2 years ago
I meant to say 40 MB
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