Method and apparatus for installing a support member to support a flexible element, such a shipping comb used to support a flexible suspension assembly of a head-stack assembly (HSA). A robotic end effector is configured to insert the support member to bias the flexible element. Prior to said insertion, an inspection assembly verifies at least one physical parameter of the member while the member is supported by the end effector. One or more computerized video images along at least one axis are preferably obtained by the inspection assembly, and machine readable code on the member is preferably decoded from said image(s). The end effector preferably includes a pair of opposing gripper fingers which engage the support member with variable compressive force during insertion. A cleaning assembly preferably cleans the support member prior to insertion, and a subsequent video image is preferably obtained after insertion to verify installation of the member.


> Object-based data storage device

~ 00368