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An easy to use device that allows anyone to quickly and simply increase the available memory in their MacBook computer.
9,805 backers pledged $384,319 to help bring this project to life.

Post Mk3, batch 1, part 1 review

Posted by niftydrives (Creator)

Hey guys,  

Really frustrating for us to hear that some of you are having a tightness issue (as well as obviously for you as well!!). With the help of Foxconn we have done a full investigation as to why this has happened and how it managed to slip past our current testing procedures. Here is what our investigations found:  

Due to the very small size of some of the parts involved in the MiniDrive assembly, the plastic can be quite delicate before and during the ultrasonic weld process.

The way an ultrasonic welder works is by bringing two metal plates together, either side of the two components that you want to be fused, and then vibrates at a very high frequency. This causes the plastic to melt at the point in which the two components touch. It is a very reliable way of joining two surfaces, but when a thin part is heated it can cause a small amount of dimensional instability.

Each time a new model is put onto the production line for assembly the ultrasonic weld heads must be swapped and re-calibrated. Unfortunately, this meant that if a new head is a fraction of a mm out of calibration it could cause a small amount of wall collapse at the front of the MiniDrive, leading to the tightness issues some of you are seeing.  

During our pre-production run testing no dimensional instability was detected, and the parts were all fully functional without issue. In addition, it was never a QA point of inspection as it was not something we expected. The problem occurred once we moved across to mass production.  

On the assembly line full testing is conducted at three points:  

- 100% testing of the bare circuit  

- 100% testing of the circuit once assembled (tester pictured below)  

- sample testing using a SD card reader and microSD card  

As you can see, the 100% MiniDrive circuit tester essentially mimics a microSD card (it tests for opens, shorts and faulty connections), with one critical difference - there is a lot more to hang on to than on a normal microSD card, which gets to the root of why the stiffness issue was not picked up on the assembly line despite 100% testing.  

Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your perspective) these issues were picked up early by you guys - as it was (and is) our number 1 priority to make sure you all have a fully functional MiniDrive, we shipped out to you guys first, even before we had started assembling the next part of the first batch. As soon as we heard preliminary reports we investigated, identified the cause of the issue and added supports within the ultrasonic welder to prevent any part of the weld from melting more than it should and causing the tightness issues.  

Further to this, we are bringing in house our remaining stock for a 100% "real life conditions" inspection. We expect to have this concluded in the next week. If you have a problem with your MiniDrive, please email us on and we will send you an in-house verified MiniDrive - we currently have quite a high volume of incoming mail, so response time is about 1+ week long at the moment  

As far as improving our assembly process goes, aside from updating the ultrasonic welding machine, we are adding a maximum removal force QA condition to the microSD card portion of the MiniDrive, as well as supplying a model of MacBook for each model of MiniDrive so that "real life" use case conditions can be tested directly on the assembly line.  

Please keep us up to date with any further issues you encounter as it is massively helpful for us to iterate and update the MiniDrive. You guys are helping us pioneer this, and we can't do it without you.  

As always, we are 100% committed to getting the perfect MiniDrive to you.  

All the best,  

Piers & The Nifty Team

Pranav Anam and Dillon McCallum like this update.


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    1. fmotta on

      WOW - well it appears that nobody complaining about being ripped-off without even an attempt at delivery other than me on this forum...

    2. fmotta on

      Well, Amazon claims that it is too late for them to address this. I think the ploy of Nifty is to delay the reaction of their "marks" long enough that the financial institutions are reticent to take action so that they can keep as much of their ripped-off funds as possible.

    3. fmotta on

      I guess it it time for further action like posting to the web and contacting my credit card agency to get a charge back. This is the first time I have had to do this and never thought anyone would be as unethical/non-communicative in behavior that I'd feel the need to do so. NiftyDrive will be my first and hopefully last KS project to be a true rip-off.

      @Nifty: Welcome to the elite that are below the bottom the barrel (with the crawly things).

    4. fmotta on

      Still waiting for my first delivery of a reward from my flakiest project... Nifty...

      Anything other than taking a holiday at your backers and reputations expense?

    5. Missing avatar

      Richard Coggle on

      Mine never turned up in the first place - what a joke

    6. Richard Espy on

      I am also still waiting for my replacement Minidrive.

    7. Joerg Mosthaf

      Same here - still waiting for my replacement for a Nifty Minidrive that broke getting it out of the packaging :( No communication since the email asking me if I would like to wait for the reinforced mk2. I never even got a mk2 nor a mail about the mk3 :(

    8. Todd A Naber on

      Hey guys- I received the first one.. look good but didn't work- Sent it back. The second one arrived- it worked once, but got stuck inside the MacBook Pro. The Genius at the Apple Store couldn't remove it so off to Apple it went. I found out it had 'separated' inside the SD slot and paid Apple $199 for the extraction (AppleCare wouldn't cover this). The Nifty crew said "don't send it back- send us a video of it being destroyed." I sent it back instead.. I din't have the money to buy a video camera to video it's destruction.
      I still haven't seen a replacement- Mk3. You guys made money worldwide on unsuspecting users. The last time I jump in on someones pipe dream.
      Now the iPad Brydge on KickStarter- that was a great project... but then it was in the US!

    9. Peter Pijpelink on

      Never got my replacement unit. Totally untrusted people!!! Never would fund these guys again.

    10. Missing avatar

      Fred on

      Paid $60 for 2 back in August 2012; fast forward 17 months and I still haven't received them. Are you guys ever going to ship me something?

    11. EmpChildren on

      Got an email. Shipping next week. Waited a week and emailed back asking status. Response, "shipping next week".
      See the pattern?

    12. Kane Harrison on

      Sent my mk2 back a long time ago, said I'd wait for a mk3. Waited, contacted them, filled out a survey form about the mk3, wait a few more months and still nothing.

    13. Missing avatar

      Matt Stultz on

      Still waiting for mine also. What's up guys?

    14. fmotta on

      Replace non-functional!? I have never received more than flim-flam from this project...

      This project is the only one I have that is a complete and total sham

    15. Missing avatar

      John Burruss on

      Similarly -- they told me they would replace my non-functional drive back in October -- but nothing has arrived and no correspondence since.

    16. Mirko Maurice on

      Still wait for my green Nifty MiniDrive Mk3 :(

    17. EmpChildren on

      No official update?
      Just started getting silence from support.

    18. EmpChildren on

      Was told by support, the it will be "a few more weeks" before the MK3s ship.
      Again, never received anything.

      Note the email with the coupon code said OCT ship. There was an email from Nov 5th that said end of Nov/early Dec. So support doesn't know the emails they send nor the order.

      A few more weeks. Never received anything but emails. Great. Never an offer for a non-kickstart colored drive cover while i wait. Just, "please wait, we know it is frustrating". For a product that is a year late.

      Now from support on DEC 2nd:
      As you may remember from the email containing the coupon code, colored MiniDrives require a custom manufacturing run and due to some additional QA procedures that have been added to the production line we are now expecting to ship in few weeks. We hope you can hang on for a few more weeks, and we'll get this out to you as soon as possible.

    19. EmpChildren on

      So Oct came and went. Nov is now in the past. Any updates for the people that have never received anything in the last year.

      Lots of people have gotten 2, 3 or even 4 with replacements. I haven't received anything.

    20. fmotta on

      Will I ever get my Nifty drives or have you guys been sandbagging and on holiday with our backers resources?

      This project and the individuals should probably be on the scam network by now.

    21. Missing avatar

      Oliver on

      Hey, my Nifty drive looks great and works great! Thank you so much for creating this awesome product!! (the packaging was really cool too!)

    22. Peter Pijpelink on

      Worse project ever. total lies and no good working product,. should have never backed them.

    23. Missing avatar

      deleted on

      This user's account has been deleted.

    24. Missing avatar

      deleted on

      This user's account has been deleted.

    25. EmpChildren on

      So, still haven't gotten mine.
      When should the kickstarter green ones go out?
      Again, never received any of the previous ones, filled out forms, and more forms and even more forms.
      Is there a new form I should fill out to keep me busy?

    26. Missing avatar

      John Dean on

      Here in the US I just received the replacement for my first MK III Mini - the original made it nearly impossible to pull the Micro SD card out of it, I nearly broke it the first time trying. They've sent me the replacement already, much quicker than I had anticipated. The second one works great. MIcroSD comes out much easier, reads and writes just fine. If I push it till it stops it sits quite a bit recessed in the side of my Retina MB Pro, but it works fine not pushed in all the way as well, so I have it sitting flush. I funded in July of 2012 so it's been 15 months to get here, but I'm pleased with the final result. Thanks for the persistence guys.

    27. Paige on

      My first minidrive didn't work, so I sent it back, according to instructions -- but I haven't received a replacement yet. When might my replacement arrive?

    28. Anthony on

      I also still haven't seen a single nifty drive ...

    29. EmpChildren on

      Jochem van Leeuwen
      9810 People backed, from my count that means 12917 nifty drives were ordered (not including additional orders after closing).

      Initial posts after the Read/Write issue showed 10%-20% read/write failures on the return/nifty support page.

      Through the posts, there about 80ish unique backers who have commented on not receiving their Nifty Drives. Assume 10% of people post, or follow up, that puts the number of people that haven't recieved their Nifty Drives in the 8%-12% range.

      Bored at work and figured I would calculate my chance of getting a drive, that works (read/writes), doesn't fall apart (glue seperation) or lets me take my SD card out.

    30. Missing avatar

      Sean Scott on

      For what it's worth, my MK3 arrived a few weeks ago and works great. Thanks, guys!

    31. EmpChildren on

      As with many others, I never received anything.
      I had contact with the Nifty when I didn't get my first drive. After the problems they were having I chose to wait for 2nd generation.
      Never got that.
      Opted for Mk3. Still haven't received.
      Now my support cases are closed with case forwarded to Jasmeet. And then silence.
      Glad some people at least got 1, some seem to have gotten one from each generation, and some like me haven't received anything yet.
      This needs to be addressed.

    32. Missing avatar

      Chahlie on

      My mk3 works fine. Even though the SD is stuck and I probably will have a hard time taking it out. I think I'll just leave it since I don't plan on having anything larger than a 64gb.

    33. Andre Brown on

      I've yet to receive my mini drive.. Are we going for year 2?

    34. Missing avatar

      Michael Reinhart on

      Just received 5 replacements. Presumably from this batch. Only 1 of them works.

    35. fmotta on

      Is it so difficult to use a micrometer?
      Is it so challenging to make something that has been shipping from another company for many months (maybe even a year or more)?
      Is it such an issue to communicate with your backers via the site from which the funds were received?
      Is your self esteem so bad that you cannot handle the trauma of communication with your backers about your failure?

    36. Missing avatar

      Paolo on

      I never received my object..... Unbelivable

    37. Rob Kubasko on

      Got five of the original drives... 4 didn't work. Only requested 1 of the MK3 models. Received it. The drive not only didn't work (nothing would mount or be seen when inserted) but I had to destroy it to remove the SD card because it wasn't removable due to the problems outlined in this update. Overall, pretty disappointing but this product seems to have incredibly small tolerances that I'm not surprised have been difficult to replicate correctly in mass quantities.

    38. daniel L on

      Bonjour. Lecture seule…, j'ai renvoyé mon Nifty comme demandé et j'ai reçu un nouveau qui semble très bien fonctionner. Je ne parle pas de délai, c'est normal, surtout pour un nouveau produit. Merci les gars pour votre travail, ça je voulais le dire, car une critique négative n'apporte aucune solution.

    39. Michael on

      I got my MK3 and while the card is (kind of stuck) in the slot, it seems to work just fine. Thanks guys. Sorry there are so many other issues with them.

    40. Missing avatar

      Maikel Lodewijk on

      1+ week!? More 1+ month...

      I don't believe in you guys or your product because of this... So I would lika a refund asap...

    41. fmotta on

      The sole positive thing I can say I have on opinion about Nifty is that they are consistent. Consistently non-communicative and consistently non-performing. I have not receive even one thing that is associated with this project except a notification that my money was taken and a survey. Well , I received the honor of being ignored.

    42. Shy Lev-Ari on

      it is utterly amazing to me how you guys IGNORE all the complaints and continue about as if business is usual. You bother to post updates, but reject any and all "bad comments". more than anything, it's just bloody frustrating. shame on you.

    43. JKB

      For the record, I LOVE MY MINI DRIVE.

    44. Missing avatar

      Van Easton on

      As I read this it at least sounds like you have sent out all pledges. I never received mine. Are some still due to be sent?

      Van Easton

    45. Missing avatar

      Carol Stambaugh on

      I never received mine. :( so bummed. How do I get it?

    46. Pace McCulloch on

      You guys are amazing! I can't believe the amount of time and effort you put in to supporting us. My MK3 is tight but I don't care, it works and I love it and I'm keeping it. I'll buy another one if I want a looser slot. Thanks for the great product and good luck with all the other pledgers.

    47. Missing avatar

      Jochem van Leeuwen on

      I'm curious if there are any stats on how many people are actually using the product as expected (or at least didn't request a reship).

      I for one am using the first version happily and it's working very well. I'm pretty sure there are many others (hopefully the majority), but they don't bother to comment here. This might put some comments, like the one from michael shevloff, into perspective.

    48. Johnny on

      My micro sd card is destroyed from trying to get it out. My nifty card also is cracked because of it after inserting the microSd card