SD memory cards…great when they work!!!

Missing fingers on SD card
This weekend I took part in the ARCI  Welcome to QRP contest it's only a 3 hour contest from 11:00 am to 2:00pm (local time). I decided to take this contest to the park as it sure does help with the bonus points that are offered for going portable. I took my camera along to snap some shots. Most of us who blog do have a camera of some kind to add the flavor of pictures to the blog post. My camera is a Nikon D60 and has been giving me some trouble,  now then it would not recognize the SD memory card and failed to take a picture.
Just like a sore tooth that gets better just before the dentist visit....the camera would work just fine at the camera store. Today the camera worked great and when I go home I wanted to email a contacts I had that turned into a very nice QSO.
Seam problem

Seemed the SD card knew I was in a hurry and wanted  pictures to add to an email. The computer told me it could not recognize the memory card. The card was then put back in the Nikon D60 but now it too would not recognize the card either. GREAT here we go again I thought but after close examination I found the card to have some damaged fingers at the far right!!! I went on the internet and downloaded some programs that claimed they could recover pictures from damaged SD cards. I didn't have any luck with these programs other than them taking up space on my hard drive. I still was getting a
The fix until all was downloaded
message to place the SD card into the reader so photos could be recovered. Well the card was in the reader and it was not looking good at all. I then had a closer look at the card there was not only fingers missing but the card was separating at it's seam. I tried  taping the seam as the card may be separating when entering the card reader and not allowing the contacts of the card to come in contact with the reader. After a few attempts it worked and I just copied the photos to my external hard drive. Now the SD card is in the garbage, I also had a very close look at the other SD cards for damage. All the cards were in good shape but lesson learned.....take a close look at the SD cards as I believe this was the problem with the camera from the get go as it is the only card I was using.
Mike Weir, VE9KK, is a regular contributor to and writes from New Brunswick, Canada. Contact him at [email protected].

6 Responses to “SD memory cards…great when they work!!!”

  • Wade KJ4WS:

    I don’t know about the separation of the card but, taking a close look at your photos. It sure looked like the finger contacts were quite dirty. The next time this happens, try a little trick that I have learned. Use an eraser from any #2 pencil and gently Clean/Erase the gunk from the contacts. Look at your pictures again and you will see what I am talking about. Also, note that the contacts look much cleaner in the picture where the card once again started working. Did you clean them?

  • Mike Ve3wdm:

    Good morning Wade, that is a great idea regarding the eraser to clean the contacts. I too saw that the contacts were dirty but when I got the card to work it was without cleaning the contacts. I still have the card at home and will give it an eraser cleaning and see how that works. Thanks for stopping by the blog Wade and taking the time to leave a comment.

  • m3ozp:


    regarding memory cards…the biggest problem I have had is when memory cards seem to mysteriously write protect themselves.

    I have tried every thing to try and sort this problem out but without success, and as far as I know no one knows how or why this happens to memory cards. Various ideas have been put up on the internet, but I have found none of them to work.

    I cannot even get a straight answer from the memory card manufacturers either. And a couple of local computer guys don’t have an answer either.

    Has anyone else come across this problem?

    Surely someone out there Knows how or why this happens, and a proper cure for it?

    When it happens it makes the card absolutely useless, you vcant transfer anything from it or to it.

    It’s so annoying and frustrating at times.

    I have given up buying expensive ones as they do it as well, and so I found it more economical to buy the cheaper ones on ebay rather than spend pounds in local shops, only to find they will not work anymore.

    I have had it happen about 3 times in the past 6 years.

    The last time was last year after spending £20.00 on a 16Gb card from a local store. It was a verbatim brand.

    After that I brought one off ebay and so far touch wood no problems but it cost half the price.


  • Mike VE3WDM:

    Good evening M3OZP, I did not realize it was such a problem I had thought it was just a one off for me. My cards are in the medium price range and this is the first one this has happen too. BUT I was able to get the pictures off the card in the end. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment.

  • Chris m3ozp:

    Hi Mike,

    Yes if you google it you will find that it can be a right problem, but as of yet no one has a definitive answer to the problem.



  • Mike VE3WDM:

    Good evening Chris, yes I too have not been able to find out why… just happens. I might say that it does happen when you have pictures on the card that mean the most to you of your days photos. Thanks for stopping by the blog and taking the time to comment.

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