Screw you laptop! Literally!

First rule of engineering: only you repair your electronics!

Posted by Shikher Verma on Tuesday, July 5, 2016 Tags: CodeMonkey   3 minute read

Warning: Stunts performed by crazy roboticist ! Don’t try at home :P

Recently both the hinges of my laptop broke. Although I had already opened up all the screws my laptop before, this time I was going go another level up. Last time I had added RAM to my laptop but since it does not have a RAM access slot at the back, I had to unassemble everything above it to get to the RAM slot, thanks to the guidance of ninjaduck and hackmaestro my laptop survived that operation. Being involved in the building of AUV-IITK, I had also learned to use a lot of big toys in robotics club. This time I was going to combine these too to perform the ultimate laptop fix.

First things first. Getting the right tools. Any task becomes a breeze when you have the right tools to do it. Luckily I had robotics club and magic drawer at my disposal. Wait! Let me tell you about the magic drawer. Hackmaestro has a drawer right above his seat in lab, which has all the gadgets you could ever think of. And I mean it. Really. From laptop repair tools to kindle to nfc tags. Whats the last coding book you searched for ? I bet its there in that drawer. Its like a real life implementation of doremon’s pocket! Anyways I got what I needed. laptop-repair-tools

Both the hinges were jam in there position due to dust. I figured this was the reason why it broke. When I tried to close the screen instead of moving with the hinge it just broke off. And now the structure that holds the hinge with the display was gone. I tried to loosen the hinge nut so that the hinge is movable again but it seemed that had been jammed too! Maybe it requires a little more torque. So I switched to a bigger tool. But still no luck. Now I got frustrated. I came back with the biggest wrench the club had. laptop-repair-tools

This time it shifted a little and stuck again. After 10 minutes of sweating and cursing I figured was rotating it in the wrong direction! poker-face

Well, once I recovered from that disappointment, I gathered up to courage to actually do the deed. I was gonna drill through the plastic behind the hinge, where once the hinge supporting structure used to be. This felt really exciting! I was a little nervous about it, since I could potentially damage my laptop permanently. It felt like I was back in Xth standard, partitioning my hardisk to dual boot with the risk of permanently loosing all the data. Or when I rooted my first android the following year. I guess I like jumping into these situations :D I didn’t mess up this time. drilled-laptop

Finding bolt in robotics club is easy but finding a fitting nut is near impossible! I though I would have to go to the market to get the correct size, but you can always recycle parts from old robots. I hope the old chess playing robot team does read this blog :P because the only fitting nuts I found were bolted in their robot.

After a bit of cleaning and filling off extra screw threads this is what it looks like now laptop-finished-front laptop-finished-back Its not the neatest design. But it looks cool. :)