Purchase a Rana Systems 1000 Floppy Disk Drive for your Atari 8-Bit Computer (10-15 mins)

Task: Purchase a Rana Systems 1000 Floppy Disk Drive for your Atari 8-Bit Computer

Needed: Web browser 

Time: 10-15 minutes

Introduction

There were several different brands of 5.25″ floppy drives available for the Atari 8-bit computers. Each had their own unique advantages and disadvantages. For example, I have previously posted about the Indus GT that many consider to be the best of the best. Here I cover the Rana Systems 1000 double-density floppy drive.

I have two Rana drives. The first I have had since the 1980s and comes in the original box. Unfortunately, this one does not work, and I have been unable to get it going despite all the usual tricks. Fortunately, it does power up and try to go through the boot sequence resulting in a boot error. I picked up my second Rana at VCF SoCal in 2024 and this one works great.

Rana Systems 1000 Floppy Drives
Rana Systems 1000 Floppy Drives

The Rana is nice because it shows you what track the drive is reading on an LED. It also has a number of built-in functions that are accessible through the touch controls on the front. For example, you can write protect a disk and can launch a number or error-checking routines. These are covered in the guide mentioned below.

Instructions

At the time of this post there were no Ranas for sale on eBay. These are a bit hard to find and you might need to pay more than $100 for one.

Here is the Rana installation guide from 1983.

Back of the Rana Systems 1000 Box
Back of the Rana Systems 1000 Box

Comments

I prefer the Indus GT drives to the Rana but am happy to have these.

Note that the Rana works fine with an Atari 1050 9v power supply.

These sold for around $350 in 1983.

If you have any tips for fixing up my malfunctioning Rana beyond cleaning the head and cleaning and greasing the rails, please let me know. Unlike the 1050, there does not seem to be a track 0 sensor or drive speed control.

Rana Ad in ANTIC Magazine v2 #9
Rana Ad in Antic Magazine v2 #9