Thanks for the reply but in all honesty, I find that 'tool' junk. Thew few times I've used the MS 'fixit' tool, it's never ever worked.
I figured it was a lazer issue/drive issue but just wanted to know if anyone else had anything to say.
I ordered a manufacturer refurbished replacement drive for it ... that drive had the exact same problem. So, I got a 3rd drive ... workd perfect!! Turns out the original drive was bad alright, but so was the first replacement they sent me.
Resolved. Bad drive.