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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > A DIY iBook Dual USB Logic Board Repair

A DIY iBook Dual USB Logic Board Repair (Page 3)
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Jun 1, 2007, 01:35 PM
 
i had my logic board replaced 2.5 years ago while it was still under warranty. then, last december i started having the same problems. since i was fairly certain it was the logic board again, i went about researching the various ways to repair it. finally, i decided the diy repair was the best option. i borrowed a heat gun and set up shop on my dining room table:
- four layers of aluminum foil with the bga space cut out
- put cardboard shims between the plastic frame and the components to try to help prevent curling
- placed three small pieces of solder on top of the chip
- scattered several pieces of solder in top of foil
- placed a digital probe thermometer to hover near the edge of the bga

i followed guy's suggestions on gradual temperature change. once the solder pieces melted, the fan from the heat gun was strong enough to blow the ball toward the edge of the chip. so i backed off the heat after only about 10 seconds. after cool down, the hardware tests passed, but later that night the video froze a couple of times. i didn't bother me at first because all reboots were successful, but only until the next time i bumped my computer. i figured another attempt at repair was in order. this time i was able to hold the heat at melting temp for about a minute. yada yada...i powered her up, pushed on the chip, shook the computer--no problems with video freeze.
there is some noticeable warping on the edge of the plastic frame, mostly around the headphone port.

i've been thinking...if this repairs sticks, then i could celebrate with a tiger upgrade. six months is a long time to go without my beloved ibook. it was a long time to go without updating my ipod as well.

thanks to guy kuo for his courage and generosity!
~amanda
     
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Jun 1, 2007, 01:36 PM
 
i don't care what the thing looks like, i just want it to work!
     
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Jun 1, 2007, 02:35 PM
 
My G4 has been shutting down lately, same symptoms as before. Looks like it's time for either a bigger shim or find someone to solder pins 1 and 28 for me.
     
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Jun 3, 2007, 07:38 PM
 
i've already posted what i did to my computer...the repair only worked temporarily. my computer runs fine for about ten minutes and then freezes. i even decided to put it on a desktop, but the same problem.
my question is: should i attempt the repair again?
is there some other visual aid/sign i can use to judge if the heat has been applied long enough?
any suggestions would be much appreciated.
thanks
     
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Jun 11, 2007, 10:01 PM
 
Originally Posted by Gankdawg View Post
My G4 has been shutting down lately, same symptoms as before. Looks like it's time for either a bigger shim or find someone to solder pins 1 and 28 for me.
I thought about that too since I never considered the shim a good permanent fix.

But the problem is that I don't know if a plain old surface solder would be enough. The cracks in the solder that happen seem to be both behind and on top of the pin where it comes in contact with the motherboard.
It would require a much smaller solder tip than I own and I have never done any thing like this before. I would like to hear from more people who did G4 iBook fixes before I would consider it.



Anyone heard anything else about Apple and the G4 iBook issues?
     
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Jun 22, 2007, 05:55 PM
 
Hi guys, I registered just to tell you about my experience with this repair.
I have an iBook G3 900MHz that underwent the logic board repair, but after a few months the video card started with the usual problems again, until one day it just died.
So I read a few threads and decided for the surgery. Here you can see a picture of my rig:



Here my step by step guide:

1) Open up the iBook as described in the guide of ifixit.com
2) Place the iBook on a heat resistant surface. I work in a chemistry lab, so the counter was the best surface possible.
3) Put some heat conductive paste on the VGA chip.
4) Place a thermocouple on the chip (I placed it between the ATi one and the two small Samsung ones) and on top a metal bar. Make sure it is leveled just flat and that it presses on the chip uniformly. The idea is that the bar will heat up ONLY the chip, leaving the rest of the board and other sensitive parts untouched.
5) Place the heat gun on the other side of the bar and cover the end with some foil, to ensure maximum efficiency.
6) The bar will heat up very quickly and to very high temperature. Don't even think about touching it bare handed!
7) I had the thermometer go up to 190°C and then turn the heat gun off. I removed the steel bar (that's a difficult step: the paste will cause it to stick and it's going to be piping hot... you need some real professional grade gloves!) and let it cool down to room temperature.
8) Remount the iBook, turn it on and... behold!



Yes, that's my iBook G3 with 10.4.10 running!
     
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Jun 30, 2007, 01:12 PM
 
I just had my board reflowed by First Phase Techonlogies in Tempe, Arizona. The cost was $50.00 total cost, which I think is more than reasonable. They have a technician who has been doing this process for over 9 years. Give them a call 1-480-967-1100. Ask for Bobby or Tom.

TB
     
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Jun 30, 2007, 04:54 PM
 
Hi. It seems to me that reflowing the joints on the BGA does not offer a permanent solution. I was looking on the internet and found that BGA's were preceeded by Pin Grid Arrays or PGA's and that they are more flexible in application than a BGA. I recently bought an ibook for the expressed purpose of removing the GPU placing it on a BGA to PGA adapter socket then placing it back on the board. I spoke to my proffessor (i'm an electrical engineering student), and I think this would provide a longer term fix since the metal pins can flex avoiding cracking. If it does not work it will at least allow the common person to adjust the board themselves. The only problem is that I have never seen the BGA of the GPU in an G3 ibook. In the previous reply someone said they got their GPU reflowed. The companies generally take X-rays of the BGA's and give them to their costumers. If anyone has gotten these services and has X-ray images or actually took of the GPU and has an image of the BGA it would help me alot if you could post the images. I posted a few threads where I go into more detail at either (Macworld: Possible Permanent Solution to G3 ibook logic Boar) or (Possible Permanent Solution to G3 ibook Nightmare | Applefritter) so have a look if you are interested.
Also, in terms of these services they will either offer to get you reflowing or reballing of your GPU. If you are looking for a temporary fix that will give you a year or two more then reflowing is a cheaper alternative to reballing the BGA. My professor said that generally when BGA's fail it is because of the uneven size of the balls on the BGA. Although reballing is generally more expensive than reflowing it is a better long term solution. If you go to (http://www.superiorreball.com) they reball ibooks for $60 which is cheaper than First Repair by $15. It is still possible in either case for the balls to crack but better safe than sorry.
     
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Jul 1, 2007, 08:53 PM
 
Hey all!

I finally found the time this weekend to attempt this reflow repair. I borrowed a heatgun from my former boss.
My iBook story started back about 2 or so years ago. I had just replaced the hard drive, as I was rapidly running out of room on the little stock 10gig drive. While on the way to Montana, the dreaded screen flicker started. As I had bought the iBook used from eBay, there wasn't any chance of a warranty repair for me. At the time, I knew it was a logic board problem, but was unaware of the exact problem. I did some looking on eBay and found a used replacement logic board. I installed it, and had the same problem. It sat for a while until I found an almost complete iBook for cheap (again, on eBay). I did some swapping, but still the same problem.
During some down time last winter, I happened upon this forum and thread
I had three logic boards available (to the left of the iBooks). One of them setting by its lonesome on a shelf, so it was the first test subject. I was a little concerned, as I had read of the 1500 watt guns here in this thread. Mine is a measley 450 watt. I stuck some solder in front of it, and it melted it pretty fast, so I guessed I was good to go.
I dressed the board with aluminum foil and preheated. Long story short, I fried the first test subject No boot sound or anything.
I get the second test subject out, and I am a lot more careful, paying attention to my preheat, ramp up time and total time I had the gun on the chip. Load her up, and I get a boot sound! IT WORKS!!! I have been through several reboots, and everything works great.
I moved on to the second one around 5 AM this morning. This is my original iBook. I follow the same procedure, and I get the boot sound! And video! But it was short lived. With all of the trouble I have had with this one, I am quite sure my drive was in need of some serious work. I try reloading the O/S, but can never get it to load from the CD. It always goes to OS 9.1 partition and hangs. That happened three times, and then I lost video again. Crap!
I pull it back apart and fire up the heat gun again. I use the shift while booting to try and enter safe mode. It completely loaded to 9.1. I toss in the OSX CD,and......
Here is the end result!



Now I'm going to have to get back on eBay and find a battery, a yoyo PS, Airport card, and a 512meg stick of RAM for the second iBook. My girlfriends daughter recently graduated highschool, and had to turn in the iBook issued by the school. She was absolutely sick about losing it. I think I'll give her my second one.


Anyway, sorry to talk so long, but I am way excited to have not one, but TWO iBooks up and running!

Thanks to the original poster for taking that first step.
I'm the f'king Mack Daddy in the simulator , but in the real world I look like Stephen Hawking trying to play ice hockey
     
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Jul 3, 2007, 02:44 AM
 
To anyone reading this. Do not, I mean do not try this!!! I have been speaking to an SMT rework expert (they work with these types of chip especially BGA's) and he told me that when you heat the chip you actually cause the heat required to melt the solder balls under the BGA to increase. Eventually, the heat required to melt the solder would certainly destroy the chip itself. Because this "reflowing" of the solder does not solve the problem it will inevitably happen again. This fact applies to hot air guns, coins, and alcohol based burning. In fact these methods probably and most certainly do cause the logic board to warp "technically" reconnecting it to the chip. Obviously, you do not want to go running around warping your logic board. This SMT expert posted his analysis of these home grown fixes at (Console Realm - Xbox 360 - 3 Red Light Error by SMTRework)
for anyone who is interested. Do not be alarmed by the specific address to X-Box's problem because this GPU BGA array failure goes for them, Thinkpads, and any other idiotic company who decided to go crazy with garbage BGA chips that are not ment for high use electronics. Don't get me wrong I love a apple and will always prefer an apple computer over any other but they just let the ball drop with this one... hard.

Yes your best bet is to get an expert to do this. You can get a reflow of your chip or you can get a reballing of your chip. Reflows are cheaper (usually $50 for everything including shipping) than reballing but these will probably give you a year or two before it breaks again unless you leave your ibook on a desk for the rest of its life. Reballing is more expensive >$60 but would probably offer a more a comprehensive fix. You will probably want to get the strongest solder possible and find some way of keeping your ibooks logic board cool so as to be less likely to warp. The only way I see to permanently fix this problem is to replace the GPU's BGA with something more flexible which is what I am working on right now.

A good reflow/reballing service is at (www.superiorreball.com) they reball for $60 and reflow for $50. This is probably as cheap as it is going to get because it is just triple digits after that. Also I think there are two services on ebay that will either reflow so just search ibook repair and you'll find them.

Sincerely Raulito15
     
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Jul 3, 2007, 03:58 PM
 
This is twice that you have tried to talk people out of performing this repair. Why?
If someone is so totally dependent upon their laptop, they have surely by now either replaced it with a newer model or have had it reworked by a professional.
As was the case with the original poster, I had nothing to lose if I fried the chip. After a couple of attempted repairs with used components, I had two complete but non working iBooks sitting on a shelf collecting dust. I understand that I could have them reworked by a "professional", but I was not willing to sink any more money into this computer. Hell, I have more computers around the house than I know what to do with. I had the time this past weekend to play around with this, and THEY WORK. They may only last a week, or a month, or five more years. It doesn't matter. My life is not going to be over if they quit tomorrow, as I do not have any vital bits if information on them, but I do have two laptops that I can play around with when I have the time.
Lighten up a bit.....
I'm the f'king Mack Daddy in the simulator , but in the real world I look like Stephen Hawking trying to play ice hockey
     
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Jul 3, 2007, 05:03 PM
 
Of course their are people who have had this problem for a while although I doubt they have had their logic board reworked as you yourself have attested. However, there are also people who's ibooks have JUST broken who do not understand the full ramifications of these heat methods. On every post that have these solutions, I have not seen anyone talk about the downside of this do it yourself methods which is important. Maybe you do not want to throw a few more dollars to give your laptop a few more years but that does not mean other people do not especially once they have weighed the cost and benefits of DIY repairs. Not only that, but many people are doing these bad repairs and then putting the laptops on ebay and not telling what they did which is unfair to customers. Plus, I guarantee you that both your ibooks will eventually fail again within a matter of months once they accumulate considerable wear. You asked me why I try to talk people out of this. I ask your why make the problem worse when you can make it better? But, on a lighter note congratulations on your working ibooks.
     
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Jul 3, 2007, 05:05 PM
 
Also, aside from the bad GPU's these ibooks are still pretty good computers. And for much less than a macbook you can keep it that way.
     
Guy Kuo  (op)
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Jul 3, 2007, 07:41 PM
 
There are certainly some warnings about this. Note the first posting in this thread. You CAN destroy your machine trying this.

Then again, after this surprisingly worked, that iBook of mine continues running 24/7 as a light web server taking an average of 2,000 hits/day.
     
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Jul 4, 2007, 01:19 AM
 
One thing we will never know is the true nature of the defect. I doubt Apple will EVER admit to the real problem. It could be bad solder with a weird tin/lead mix, or merely cold solder joints.
If it is the first one, I'm gonna guess that the repairs will not last if used as a portable unit. Crap solder is crap solder. Not much you can do about it except clean it off and replace it. A difficult job indeed, and best left to professionals with the proper equipment to perform such a task. If it is the second one, the reflow fix should be adequate for a permanent solution. At least permanent enough to get the proper amount of life one should be getting out of these laptops. Being an audio engineer, I have had to reflow more than my fair share of cold solder joints. This is the first time I have done it with a glorified hair dryer
Either way, these chips were built with tolerances to withstand the heat to flow the solder to the pads on the circuit boards. Taking the precautions of slowly preheating the circuit board to lessen the thermal shock, slowly ramping the temperature up to get a good solder flow, and slowly ramping DOWN the heat, there shouldn't be any problems. Looking at the data sheet information given by MacInEnterprise, I think the BGAs can take the heat we are putting to them, and there shouldn't be any warpage of the circuit board.
( Last edited by nitronick; Jul 4, 2007 at 11:13 AM. )
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Jul 4, 2007, 07:26 PM
 
You say you have a data sheet. Is for the ibook or for the GPU itself. If it is for the GPU I would like to have a copy. Could you post a link to the datasheet so that I may look at it.
     
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Jul 4, 2007, 07:59 PM
 
Look for MacInEnterprise post. I think it was on page one. I do not believe it was a data sheet for this particular chip, but general data for BGAs.
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Jul 5, 2007, 12:17 AM
 
From page 1

Here's is a more specific and accurate curve:

1. A gradual increase in temperature, of about 1 to 3 deg. up to a temperature of 150 deg C (302 F). Pre-heating is extremely important so boards don't warp. It may take a minute or even longer to pre-heat...No need to rush it. Flux activation begins at 150 deg. C (302 F)
2. Through the flux activation phase, a slow ramp up of temp. to a peak of about 180 degs. C (356 F) over about 90 seconds. Reflow begins at about 180 degs. C (356 F)
3. A gradual increase during the reflow phase to about 210 degs. C (410 F) for 60 sec.
6. Cooling phase should then begin gradually, not abruptly.

I found a really good graph of the temperature curve here:

www.altera.com/literature/an/an081.pdf

So, as long as the heating is gradual and controlled you should be able to reflow the solder without frying the rest of the board. Yes...the whole board will get quite hot despite masking everything around the video chip. As long as it's gradual and controlled, you should be OK.

You may also smell the flux as it heats up, which is normal.
I'm the f'king Mack Daddy in the simulator , but in the real world I look like Stephen Hawking trying to play ice hockey
     
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Jul 5, 2007, 03:28 AM
 
The problem is not the abrupt heating it is the successive iterations that when the chip is again and again. Generally chip manufactures will publish data sheets that detail the optimum heating curve and the number of times heating can and should be done. The thing about solder in general is that it gains a tolerance for heat and will require more heat to reach its melting point. So eventually you won't be able to melt the solder anymore at reasonable temperatures with conventional methods and thus the entire computer is ruined because the removing the chip will destroy the entire board. Although I think that if you just do not want to spend more money on these chips then I guess it would not be so bad because your just biding your time till you get a new one. However, it is worth noting that technically all ATI Mobility Radeon GPU chips are interchangeable with one another and so for around the same price as a reflow one could just pay upgrade the chip. If I am correct the G4's GPU do not have a problem with the BGA coming off the board but with a small IC pin coming loose as pictured above. I also intend to try to do that to fix one of my ibooks to see if it is truly compatible (hard to trust ATI after all this) . I got an ATI 9000 off of ebay for $28 so its worth a try.

But ultimately, I guess we can agree that if you only want to get a few more months or years out of your ibook (depending on use) than this method would be fine but, if you want to give your ibook some more years regardless of use than the best alternative is to get it reballed by a pro or to find some way to fix the BGA problem in general. I just wish there was a better way to fix this. Where mac people after all, let Ugg the stone age PC user set his computer on fire not us. (no offense to any PC users out there)
     
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Jul 5, 2007, 04:38 AM
 
Where do you get that we have applied an abrupt heating to these? If you will READ the posts, they go into detail about preheat, the timing of the temperature ramp up, the amount of time to keep the maximum applied, and ramping down the temps.
While I do agree that solder will build up a tolerance to repeated heat/cool cycles, I really think we're safe here. The BGAs on my iBooks have gone through that process, what, two times now? I don't think I'm going to have to worry about putting it through another cycle again. I'm quite sure that if and/or when they fail, they will have outlived their usefulness. Hell, I don't even know if I can load the latest OSX on them without going to extreme pains.
And I'm am not biding my time until I get another computer. As stated before, I have more computers than I know what to do with. I came across this forum and this post earlier in the year. These were sitting on a shelf collecting dust. It was just this past weekend that I had the time to devote to the repair.
Hey, if you want to spend $50-$75 on reflowing or reballing your BGA, knock yourself out.
I got to spend several hours troubleshooting and repairing a couple of computers. And by God, they are working again. I am pleased, and no matter how much you try to convince me otherwise, they are going to last longer than I need them to. YMMV
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Jul 5, 2007, 06:13 PM
 
First off. When I mentioned abrupt it was in reference to the fact that someone said all one needs to do is heat the board gradually and you will be fine. Because ultimately the problem is not so much how you heat as how many times you heat the chip. Short or fast, the soldering balls will gain a tolerance. Second, my initial post was to warn people, not just you, about the possible dangers of this DIY. Yes, many people with reference to how they "fixed" their ibook will say you can burn your chip, ruin the board, light your house on fire, and so on and so fourth. But what I am explaining, is that even if it does work it won't be permanent unless it sits on a desk FOREVER like Guy Kuo's ibook/iserver. Some people however are looking for a longer term solution to preserve there ibook. I for example was looking for a cheap laptop computer because I already have a good desktop computer but just wanted a little mobility. Yes it worked for you and it can work in general but I just want people to understand that this may not be the best long term solution for the problem if they intend to use the ibook as it was intended; an on the go laptop computer. My post is ultimately just meant to help people pick what is best for them and to give them a few options.
     
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Jul 5, 2007, 09:07 PM
 
Originally Posted by Raulito15 View Post
First off. When I mentioned abrupt it was in reference to the fact that someone said all one needs to do is heat the board gradually and you will be fine. Because ultimately the problem is not so much how you heat as how many times you heat the chip. Short or fast, the soldering balls will gain a tolerance.
Heating (and cooling) the board gradually is to keep board warpage to a minimum. Heating and cooling the chip requires an altogether different method.
I don't know about you or anyone else in this forum, but I do not intend to keep repeating this repair. I MAY try it one more time if it quits. To build up a tolerance, the solder would have to be heated and cooled many times. As I said before, mine have been through this process twice. Once at the factory during circuit board component assembly, and once during my repair. The solder balls on the BGAs will be fine.

Second, my initial post was to warn people, not just you, about the possible dangers of this DIY. Yes, many people with reference to how they "fixed" their ibook will say you can burn your chip, ruin the board, light your house on fire, and so on and so fourth.
Well, the demeanor of your initial post says something entirely different to me. I will quote you...
To anyone reading this. Do not, I mean do not try this!!
Guy wrote his disclaimer. You don't need to add your two cents, as I do not believe you have attempted this repair. Have you?

But what I am explaining, is that even if it does work it won't be permanent unless it sits on a desk FOREVER like Guy Kuo's ibook/iserver.
But you really don't know that, do you? And neither do I.
As I said before, the defect may have just been cold solder joints. No one really knows for sure but Apple, and I'm quite sure they plan on taking that information to the grave. It wouldn't be the first time thousands of units have left a factory with this defect. So, if that is the case, this crude reflow repair should be sufficient and the laptop should work fine for quite a while. I am going to try using this laptop as it is supposed to be used, and I will report my findings here.

Some people however are looking for a longer term solution to preserve there ibook. I for example was looking for a cheap laptop computer because I already have a good desktop computer but just wanted a little mobility. Yes it worked for you and it can work in general but I just want people to understand that this may not be the best long term solution for the problem if they intend to use the ibook as it was intended; an on the go laptop computer. My post is ultimately just meant to help people pick what is best for them and to give them a few options.
If people are wanting a long term solution for a laptop, I'm quite sure they aren't looking at a used, out of date iBook. The majority of people with the nerve to attempt this repair are going to be just like me. Playing around with something sitting on the shelf collecting dust.
From reading your few posts, I know this attitude. I have met you hundreds of times.
I would bet that you are a late teens/early twenties student, probably in some first year electrical engineering class, listening to your prof and worshipping the ground he walks on because he knows soooo much.
Contrary to what you might think, most people do not get electrical engineering and other related degrees so that they can teach. My guess is that your prof couldn't hack it in the real world, so he went to where he could easily eke out a living. Teaching.
And contrary to what you also might think, you will not graduate and get a job earning 75K to 100K per year to start out. People that pull down that kind of money and more have real world experience. Getting a degree gives you the tools to LEARN how things work in the real world. It doesn't teach you everything you need to know...
I'm the f'king Mack Daddy in the simulator , but in the real world I look like Stephen Hawking trying to play ice hockey
     
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Jul 6, 2007, 02:11 AM
 
How to respond?

1. Great you can you can blow your hot air gun all over the board. Thats great. Solder still builds up tolerance. The thing about solder is that it only needs a few iterations to do that.

2. You do not have to try this DIY in order to know the parills of a bad solution. Great, you tried it, it worked. You, you, you. But ultimately it is not about you. If you read this entire post you will find people who bought the broken ibook just so they could do one of these repairs and have. TAH DAH. A cheap ibook!!! In fact go on the internet and look at other post about G3 ibook failures and you will see the saaaaaaame thing. "I bought an ibook cheap of ebay and now I going to try this "

3. I am free to express my opinion however I please. Saying I don't have that right just because I haven't tried this is stupid. You may as well be telling ALL SMT experts who actually know what they are doing (unlike you) to not add their 2 cents either.

4. Hmm how do we know if the problem is caused by the BGA coming of the board. Well one thing about solder, and you would know this if you had any engineering experience, is that when solder is cold it looses its ability to bond with metal; ie. when you did your DIY "reflow" it would have failed every time if it was a cold joint. The joint would have not be able to adhere to either the the chip nor the PCB and would thus loose its spherical shape. But it did not did it? Please do not use terms you do not understand.

5. Again look at all the "my ibook just broke" on the web. Stop trying to make it about you. Sorry the world does not revolve around you. We do not all think like you. Some do but so many do not.

6 Finally, I am an engineering GRADUATE, and not only that, I have just completed my internship at Raytheon. But I cannot stay there since I am going on to continue my education and obtain a masters. I believe my professors most undoubtedly have a bit more experience when it comes to engineering so why don't you leave them out of this. But you know who else takes a job as engineering professors. RETIRED engineers. But wait thats true for other professions too isn't it. Because when you have actual experience in a profession you would technically be better qualified to teach someone who does not; Naaahh. I don't know who is teaching you, or even how much college education you have, but perhaps you should LEARN to hold your comments before you shove your foot any further into your mouth. Of course I won't earn 75k or 100k a year. I'll probably earn the average 53k a year starting that out (check the statistics if you don't believe me). Please, tell me your starting salary or because only a philosophy major would wine about "tools to LEARN how things work in the real world". If you were in any engineering program you would know that an internship is MANDATORY to gain basic experience. That said, of course I am going to need to learn more about the ins and outs of my profession and life in general but not from you obviously.

This will be my last post for I grow tired of bickering with you. Say what you want because I will not even care to look at this site again. Just keep telling people its okay to possibly mess up their ibook.
     
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Jul 7, 2007, 08:48 PM
 
Originally Posted by Raulito15 View Post
. Say what you want because I will not even care to look at this site again. Just keep telling people its okay to possibly mess up their ibook.
THANK GOD
What a bunch of worthless tripe.

People wouldn't be screwing with this stuff if their iBooks weren't already messed up. We know the risks and we know the fallibility of the process.
There's more than enough posted before you got here for us to judge for ourselves if its worth trying.

Saying, DON'T DO IT adds nothing but wasted bandwidth.
If you have nothing to add about how to better attempt the repair then just go elsewhere.
     
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Jul 8, 2007, 04:23 PM
 
My ibook 900 Mhz screen had stopped working about a week ago. I had already had it replace before last year and so I knew it was the logic board problem. Well you can imagine how shocked when apple wanted $350 for a new logic board when it seems they never really fixed the problem. So I went on my boyfriends PC and looked for other people who were experiencing this problem if any. I eventually wandered onto this site and found this solution. Thank you. If this solution was not hear I would have had to buy a new computer which at this time I could not really afford right now. I got my boyfriend to do this and yeah it worked!!! I think all of you guys here need to stop taking this so personally. So what if the guy said don't do this. He makes some good points that I did not find anywhere else in this thread. I say the more information the better.

But I do have one question? Has anyone had this fix work for a long time? I think the guy who started this post said it had worked for a while. Do you use it all the time or do you use it only sparingly. If this only last a few months I may pay to get it fixed.
     
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Jul 8, 2007, 11:07 PM
 
Double bubble
( Last edited by nitronick; Jul 8, 2007 at 11:14 PM. )
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Jul 8, 2007, 11:13 PM
 
Originally Posted by Amy12 View Post
My ibook 900 Mhz screen had stopped working about a week ago. I had already had it replace before last year and so I knew it was the logic board problem. Well you can imagine how shocked when apple wanted $350 for a new logic board when it seems they never really fixed the problem. So I went on my boyfriends PC and looked for other people who were experiencing this problem if any. I eventually wandered onto this site and found this solution. Thank you. If this solution was not hear I would have had to buy a new computer which at this time I could not really afford right now. I got my boyfriend to do this and yeah it worked!!! I think all of you guys here need to stop taking this so personally. So what if the guy said don't do this. He makes some good points that I did not find anywhere else in this thread. I say the more information the better.

But I do have one question? Has anyone had this fix work for a long time? I think the guy who started this post said it had worked for a while. Do you use it all the time or do you use it only sparingly. If this only last a few months I may pay to get it fixed.
I believe Guy uses his iBook as a light web server. I think it sits on a desk, and is not moved. He said it has been reliably working for over 2 years, and is still working fine.
I, on the other hand, am going to use mine the way it was meant to be used. As a mobile laptop. I do not utilize Apple products for business purposes, but I will try and drag it along on the road with me just to see how durable the repair is. I really have nothing to lose if it fails in short order.
I will report the results here when I get a chance.
The above naysayer has no real world experience in this matter. He is just spouting gloom and doom for all that attempt this repair, because one of his professors, or some surface mount "expert" that make a living repairing these types of chips told him it was not a good idea to try. Hell, if I made my money reballing BGA chips, I would tell people the same thing.
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Jul 13, 2007, 11:14 PM
 
Honestly, I do not know why you guys are fighting. Nitronick, you yourself wrote that you fried your first iBook logic board. However, you were fortunate enough to have two more logic boards. I only have one logic board. So, if I fail the first time, it is the last time.

I appreciate Raulito15 telling people there are other options because I actually do care about my iBook working, and would like it to be my primary portable computer. I do not want to buy a new MacBook just yet. For $60 bucks I would rather have somebody who has done this a few times do it for me.

Yes, Guy was nice enough to repeatedly warn people about this hack. However, there are a lot of people reporting the hack works. It is good to see somebody provide another option, and remind people this might not work and might make the problem worse. I do not think you have to own an iBook or to have tried the hack yourself to provide this information any more then you have to get burned by fire to tell people that fire burns.

For what it is worth, I tried the shim fix on my G3 iBook. It worked for a couple of months. I then tried the flaming tea candle method. This didn't ruin my graphic chip, but it did change the problem. Before the computer would boot, and I could see the screen. Of course, it would eventually crash because of the chip problem. After the repair attempt, it now boots, but I cannot see the screen.

I will also say the problem is a fairly common one in some portable electronics. The iBook case was designed so it is too flexible. As such, it flexes and allows the graphic chip to flex. This eventually breaks the solder connection. The idea behind the shim fix is to press the break back together. However, if you continue to use the laptop as a portable, the continued flexing will eventually make the break worse, and the fix will no longer work. The same is true for the reflow. If you continue to use the iBook as a portable, you increase the chance of the flexing to cause the problem to reoccur. However, if you use the laptop as a desktop and never move it, the problem is less likely to reoccur.

Originally Posted by nitronick View Post
Heating (and cooling) the board gradually is to keep board warpage to a minimum. Heating and cooling the chip requires an altogether different method.
I don't know about you or anyone else in this forum, but I do not intend to keep repeating this repair. I MAY try it one more time if it quits. To build up a tolerance, the solder would have to be heated and cooled many times. As I said before, mine have been through this process twice. Once at the factory during circuit board component assembly, and once during my repair. The solder balls on the BGAs will be fine.



Well, the demeanor of your initial post says something entirely different to me. I will quote you... Guy wrote his disclaimer. You don't need to add your two cents, as I do not believe you have attempted this repair. Have you?



But you really don't know that, do you? And neither do I.
As I said before, the defect may have just been cold solder joints. No one really knows for sure but Apple, and I'm quite sure they plan on taking that information to the grave. It wouldn't be the first time thousands of units have left a factory with this defect. So, if that is the case, this crude reflow repair should be sufficient and the laptop should work fine for quite a while. I am going to try using this laptop as it is supposed to be used, and I will report my findings here.



If people are wanting a long term solution for a laptop, I'm quite sure they aren't looking at a used, out of date iBook. The majority of people with the nerve to attempt this repair are going to be just like me. Playing around with something sitting on the shelf collecting dust.
From reading your few posts, I know this attitude. I have met you hundreds of times.
I would bet that you are a late teens/early twenties student, probably in some first year electrical engineering class, listening to your prof and worshipping the ground he walks on because he knows soooo much.
Contrary to what you might think, most people do not get electrical engineering and other related degrees so that they can teach. My guess is that your prof couldn't hack it in the real world, so he went to where he could easily eke out a living. Teaching.
And contrary to what you also might think, you will not graduate and get a job earning 75K to 100K per year to start out. People that pull down that kind of money and more have real world experience. Getting a degree gives you the tools to LEARN how things work in the real world. It doesn't teach you everything you need to know...
( Last edited by Terrin; Jul 13, 2007 at 11:28 PM. Reason: spelling)
     
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Jul 13, 2007, 11:40 PM
 
PS

Let me add that most people who get engineering degrees, or most degrees for that matter, only wish they could get a Professor's job. Problem is everybody wants that job, so landing one is like winning the lottery. So, being a professor has nothing to do with being able to hack it in the real world any more then if you were given the choice to win a million dollars or have to work for a million dollars. In such a situation, I suspect you'd choose to be given the million dollars. Moreover, in some fields the cutting edge research is being done at Universities. So if you want to be exposed to the cutting edge stuff, you have to 1) either be a graduate student working with a professor, or 2) be a professor.
     
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Jul 14, 2007, 01:06 AM
 
I fried my first board because I wasn't very familiar with my heat gun, and didn't pay close enough attention to the time and distance I had it from the chip. I knew that I had three boards to play with, but my butt still puckered when I heated the second one

If you will take a look at Raulito15's original post, he spoke of research so he could try to sell his own "fix" by adding a pin grid array to the BGA chip. I have to be suspicious of his ultimate motive. Look at the links in his post....

Anyway, I recently purchased two ibooks (800 and 900Mhz) and I would like to explore this solution in greater detail. I will continue to post my progress as I continue. It will be interesting to see if this actually works as I am a electrical engineering student and have some experience with these types of soldering techniques. If this works I would be willing to sell for the right price. It would be after all the only one of its kind.
If you read his posts on those other boards, he openly admits that he has no experience with these chips. He even says that he has never actually seen one.
Also, he states that he is a student in one post, and then claims to have graduated in another

This is a DIY thread.
There are plenty of disclaimers in others posts, as well as links to companies that do reflowing and reballing. He has no actual experience with this repair, so he doesn't have any authority to add to the discussion.

BTW, any prof that is working on "cutting edge technologies" aren't teaching first or second year electrical engineering classes......And obviously, I am not addressing my comments at all professors. But, I have met my fair share of hacks that do not need to be teaching for the mentioned reasons.
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Jul 17, 2007, 12:47 AM
 
I'm with Terrin on this one. I am glad that someone provided an alternative opinion about this. And I am also glad that in a long line of post that say this works that there is someone who questions for how long? You don't have to do this to know a thing or two about this. It is just like doing this once does not make anyone an expert. From Raulito15's and Terrin's post it sounds possible to actually fix this problem for good. If Raulito15 can find a good alternative that works better than this one I would be glad to buy it. I for one am kind of tired of worrying if my ibook will eventually fail again. I have had mine work well for a while (few problems sprung up) but I don't see why it won't break again if the problem truly is flexing which I believe it is.

Furthermore he does say he has two ibooks so it makes sense he would want to get rid of one. Again selling this fix is not bad either. From his post it does not sound like it is cheap on him. He did after all buy two broken ibooks even though he was initially not certain his idea would work. From his recent post he will have to pay more money to get an X-ray just to continue working on it. I think when he says he has never seen the BGA, he is referring to the one specific to the G3 ibook. I don't think that they are all the same. Then there is the cost of parts and assembly.

Finally, technically he is still a student. He said that he could not stay at his internship because he is continuing onto a higher engineering degree. So the professor he asked probably teaches seniors not freshmen. Yes this is a thread about DIY, but we should not attack people for providing information even it we don't agree or someone else has said something to that effect. I would hate to discourage anyone from coming up with something that may work. I think you guys should not be fighting each other when both of you are just trying to help solve the problem.
     
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Jul 17, 2007, 11:51 AM
 
You apparently didn't read my post.

This is a DIY thread.
There are plenty of disclaimers in others posts, as well as links to companies that do reflowing and reballing. He has no actual experience with this repair, so he doesn't have any authority to add to the discussion.
I am not going to bother verifying it, but I believe they were the same companies Raulito15 recommended.

We already know, from the original poster, that your iBook should work for quite some time. I believe the OP has had is working as a light web server. It sits on a desk and doesn't move. I, on the other hand, are going to tote this thing around with me whenever I can remember to take it with me. I travel quite extensively through the year, so it should get a good workout. And as I said before, I will report my findings here. So far I have taken it on three 1K+ mile road trips, and it is still working fine.
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Jul 19, 2007, 06:53 PM
 
UPDATE: My G4 had been consistently failing again, after shimming the first time. I put more shims in last night and I used the 'book for about an hour with no problems. If it fails again, I may try shipping it off for reflowing. Somebody above had some good advice, though, saying the iBook is not made to flex so don't carry it with one hand. I will be doing making sure I carry it with two hands now, or at least not flexing it if at all possible.
     
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Jul 20, 2007, 03:42 AM
 
Originally Posted by nitronick View Post
I fried my first board because I wasn't very familiar with my heat gun, and didn't pay close enough attention to the time and distance I had it from the chip. I knew that I had three boards to play with, but my butt still puckered when I heated the second one

If you will take a look at Raulito15's original post, he spoke of research so he could try to sell his own "fix" by adding a pin grid array to the BGA chip. I have to be suspicious of his ultimate motive. Look at the links in his post....



If you read his posts on those other boards, he openly admits that he has no experience with these chips. He even says that he has never actually seen one.
Also, he states that he is a student in one post, and then claims to have graduated in another

This is a DIY thread.
There are plenty of disclaimers in others posts, as well as links to companies that do reflowing and reballing. He has no actual experience with this repair, so he doesn't have any authority to add to the discussion.

BTW, any prof that is working on "cutting edge technologies" aren't teaching first or second year electrical engineering classes......And obviously, I am not addressing my comments at all professors. But, I have met my fair share of hacks that do not need to be teaching for the mentioned reasons.
Hey, don't get me wrong. I wasn't knocking you for frying your first board. All I am saying is everybody has different circumstances. You didn't seem to care that much if you ultimately got the iBook working because it is not your primary computer. Other people might care more about getting this thing working because it is their primary computer. Moreover, many people might be in the same boat as you: namely possessing little experience with a heat gun. As such, I suspect many people reading this Board are weighing their options such as whether or not to attempt the hack themselves, toss the iBook, or have somebody else fix it. If you care more about making the iBook work and you have little experience with a heat gun, you may decide paying somebody with experience may be a valid route to take. I do not mind if somebody here with experience doing this repair tells me he has experience and will do the repair. I never considered this option until I saw somebody post it.

For what it is worth, there are experts who can either reflow or re-ball the logic board. However, the services I have seen advertised require you to remove the logic board yourself. if you look at the instructions posted at: iFixit: iPod, iBook, & PowerBook Parts and Accessories, this is no easy feat. You are literally dissembling the whole iBook. I suspect some people will never get it back together again.

On a final note, if people are 1) the original owners of the iBook, and 2) have had the board replaced at least once, preferably twice, you may actually get Apple to still make the repair for you at no cost to you. I recently talked Apple into repairing my 5 year old iBook. A hint is that sugar is better then fire.
     
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Jul 20, 2007, 03:53 AM
 
One final note. I respect what I believe is Raulito15's scientific curiosity coupled with perhaps a bit of capitalist drive. However, I do not see the value of his proposed repair over that of re-balling. I'd imagine the pins that he proposes to use would still be susceptible to the logic board flexing. Even if it was a superior fix, realistically how many more years are people really going to use what in some cases are five year old iBooks? Re-balling is going to give you probably another two years, which is probably more then enough time for most people.
( Last edited by Terrin; Jul 20, 2007 at 03:55 AM. Reason: spelling)
     
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Jul 21, 2007, 03:40 AM
 
Originally Posted by Terrin View Post
Hey, don't get me wrong. I wasn't knocking you for frying your first board. All I am saying is everybody has different circumstances. You didn't seem to care that much if you ultimately got the iBook working because it is not your primary computer. Other people might care more about getting this thing working because it is their primary computer. Moreover, many people might be in the same boat as you: namely possessing little experience with a heat gun. As such, I suspect many people reading this Board are weighing their options such as whether or not to attempt the hack themselves, toss the iBook, or have somebody else fix it. If you care more about making the iBook work and you have little experience with a heat gun, you may decide paying somebody with experience may be a valid route to take. I do not mind if somebody here with experience doing this repair tells me he has experience and will do the repair. I never considered this option until I saw somebody post it.

For what it is worth, there are experts who can either reflow or re-ball the logic board. However, the services I have seen advertised require you to remove the logic board yourself. if you look at the instructions posted at: iFixit: iPod, iBook, & PowerBook Parts and Accessories, this is no easy feat. You are literally dissembling the whole iBook. I suspect some people will never get it back together again.

On a final note, if people are 1) the original owners of the iBook, and 2) have had the board replaced at least once, preferably twice, you may actually get Apple to still make the repair for you at no cost to you. I recently talked Apple into repairing my 5 year old iBook. A hint is that sugar is better then fire.
I did care whether I were going to get my iBook back up and running. It's just kind of a thing with me. I have a DIY/troubleshooter side of me that just was not satisfied with them sitting on the shelf collecting dust. And, by God, I was either going to get them fixed or completely destroy everything. No, it is not my main computer, but I do wind up using it more than I thought I would.

Disassembly of the iBook is a major pain in the behind. I have become so versed in it because I have had the things apart so many times, but I still need that guide sometimes. What kills me about the iBooks are the many different types of screws. When you have to tear into one of them, you had better have a very large table available to lay everything out in order of assembly. One that you KNOW will not be disturbed until you get the thing back together.
I recently replaced the motherboard in an old Sony laptop that had quit working (found a MB on eBay for cheap, so I thought I would give it a shot.). There were only two different types of screws in the entire computer. One type for the outer casings and the second type for everything internal. The easiest laptop repair I have ever completed.
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Jul 21, 2007, 03:51 AM
 
Originally Posted by Terrin View Post
However, I do not see the value of his proposed repair over that of re-balling. I'd imagine the pins that he proposes to use would still be susceptible to the logic board flexing. Even if it was a superior fix, realistically how many more years are people really going to use what in some cases are five year old iBooks? Re-balling is going to give you probably another two years, which is probably more then enough time for most people.
I concur.
The only way it might work is if you drilled through the logic board and soldered the pins to both sides of it. I pulled the graphics chip off of the board that I fried. The circuit board solder pads are way too small to be drilling and pinning. Then you have to worry about how you would attach them to the chip.
The above highlight was my point. He is getting bent out of shape over something that, at best, is going to be a second computer for the people that have the bags to attempt the repair.
If their iBook was such a critical piece of their life, they have found a way to get the data from it and moved on to another computer.
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Jul 22, 2007, 03:48 AM
 
An hour ago, I successfully stripped my iBook (800MHz model), masked off everything but the GPU with tin foil, and toasted it with a heat gun. My innovation was to use a candy thermometer, placed adjacent to the chip. I spent about 3 minutes wafting heat down, raising the temperature 25 degrees Celsius at a time, and holding for 20-30 seconds at each new temperature. At 175 degrees C on the candy thermometer (about 350F), I took a rag and pressed gently/firmly on the GPU. I don't know if that helped or not. I then kept wafting heat for another 3-4 minutes as it cooled back to about 100C, then let it cool the rest of the way by itself. I popped the battery back in, turned the machine over and presto - a working IBook It will be interesting to see how long the fix lasts.
     
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Jul 22, 2007, 02:39 PM
 
I'm still a bit concerned by pushing down on the chip with the solder balls molten. It would be very easy to slip the chip sideways or push down too far and short circuit one pad to another.
     
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Jul 23, 2007, 01:04 AM
 
I have to agree with Guy. I wouldn't put any pressure on the chip at all.
There is a visible drop in the chip just putting the heat gun on it. Not much, but you should be able to see a difference if it reached the proper temperature.
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Jul 27, 2007, 08:22 PM
 
Hi Guys,

First of all, thanks for contributing your information.

I just recently bought an 800MHz iMac G3 for cheap, with the same symptoms as described in this thread. Actually, it not only was having intermittent flickering/freezing/blank screen issues, but also was going to sleep for no reason. I thought I might just be able to replace the reed switch and fix all of the problems. I replaced the reed switch myself, but it appears to have just fixed the sleeping problem (and hey, no complaints, at least I didn't wreck the whole freakin thing).

Soon, I will attempt a reflow as described in this thread. Please wish me luck. I'll let you guys know how it goes.
     
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Jul 28, 2007, 09:06 PM
 
Okay, first of all, that little flame war up there was annoying. Glad that's over with! There's no clearance to put anything in unless you dremel out a hole in the bottom of your shielding and case. Converting to pins just ain't going to work.

Second of all, mine went in for 3 repairs. Then, crapped out the 4th time after being 30 days out of the 3 year run (I bought one of the last 900 MHz offered on the Apple promise that they'd "fixed" the problem. *sigh*) Ironically, I extended my last failure by buying one of those USB powered laptop fans. I held it to the bottom of the iBook with velcro, and it did a dual purpose of stopping the dreaded "grab corner of laptop with one hand to carry around" flex and the "overheat the laptop by setting it on the couch or a pillow" bakeoff.

If I can get a 6 month reprieve until 10.5, I'll be happy.

Finally - REAL QUESTION SETUP- since mine was in for 3 repairs, it was roached inside. Heads threaded on screws to where I couldn't undo it about 2/3rd of the way into the tear down. (The guys on my 2nd repair hosed it, it came back with a cracked middle case line, a different battery, and a wiped harddrive. Apple gave me a new battery for my whining... wish I was smart enough to had taken it apart to see the piss poor job. The 3rd repair guys put one of the screws for the monitor lid area into the foil, and not the actual screw hole!) I flexed back the foil as far as I could like the previous dudes did, but it wasn't far enough to get my modem out.

So, anyone have tips for masking off the computer, case, etc. and doing this with the motherboard in place? Think I should take out the harddrive?
     
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Jul 30, 2007, 02:01 AM
 
I'm happy to report, from my formerly broken 800Mhz iBook, that sure enough the reflow worked.

It took me two tries. I'll post more details later.
     
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Jul 30, 2007, 06:57 PM
 
Hi, I just registered.
I have an iBook G3 900MHz with this typical Logic Board problem and fixed with my heatgun, seems to be ok ... i hope it will last ...

But I have also a problem with the speakers, almost no sound, but with my headset everything is ok ... So is it possible to put some new and better speakers in my laptop ???????
     
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Jul 31, 2007, 02:03 AM
 
Originally Posted by jonceramic View Post
So, anyone have tips for masking off the computer, case, etc. and doing this with the motherboard in place? Think I should take out the harddrive?
You can take just the bottom cover off, mask everything off with 3 or 4 layers of aluminum foil and heat it up. I performed the reflow on my second iBook with the logic board in the computer. Open up the screen to a 90 degree angle and hang it off the edge of your work area.
Trim the foil about 1/2" from the edges of the graphics chip, so you can keep a watch on the surrounding components. As Guy said in his post, watch the solder on those components as one way to measure the heat being applied.
( Last edited by nitronick; Jul 31, 2007 at 02:33 AM. )
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Aug 1, 2007, 09:13 AM
 
My poor old ibook has been sitting in the cupboard for the last 18 months. Shims only temporarily fixed the problem but as I had got myself a nice new iMac the ibook sat gathering dust.

But last week I decided to do something about it. I followed the various posts on this thread: I took off the bottom cover (got quite good at this ;-) ) removed the shield, turned the machine upside down and opened the LCD over the side of a table. Turned on the machine to warm it up, disconnected it, ran the heat gun across the board from about 18 inches away to generally warm it up, then I masked the board with two layers of foil, a layer of waffled cardboard and two more layers of foil.

Over the space of around 5/6 minutes I ran the gun all over the (protected) board and in particular the (exposed) chip. When I was around six inches away I gave the chip two minutes full blast until I could smell warm solder, then I gently backed away over the course of the next 3/4 minutes. I planned to follow Guy's timings to the letter but got a bit carried away despite watching a clock very carefully.

I left the ibook in a safe place disassembled for a week, I was too nervous that it hadn't worked - but by golly it does!

One extremely happy resurrected ibook and owner are off on their hols next week, luckily in-laws have just had wireless broadband installed.

Thanks Guy and everyone else for your knowledge and experience. Totally outside my comfort zone and without any optimism my machine is cured (for the moment - but I'll take much more care of it from now on rather than chucking it around).
     
Guy Kuo  (op)
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Aug 1, 2007, 05:24 PM
 
Congrats. Each time I begin reading of someone else doing this, I'm not sure whether it's going to be another success story or someone frying their logic board. Thankfully, it's usually the former. Hope your fix keeps.
     
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Aug 9, 2007, 05:52 AM
 
I came across this thread when the first of our two iBooks failed back in January. At the time, we bought a used replacement (bringing our iBook tally to three), but I was keen to try this fix on the otherwise completely dead machine. A couple of months later, our second iBook died a similar death. This time a client of mine in Japan was kind enough to send me a replacement that was surplus to requirements. Tally now four!

So finally I've borrowed a heat gun and gone at the two dead machines. I pretty much followed Guy's method, but put a coin (10 yen!) on the chip to spread the heat. 2kw heat gun on a medium setting. A few solder scraps on the chip as a temperature gauge.

The first iBook came up working straight away; where previously it had the dreaded screen flicker and this got worse over a period of minutes until it crashed, now it seems just fine. As you all know, 24 hours is much too soon to tell whether this is a permanent or short-term fix, but as of now the machine is fine.

The second iBook would not even boot prior to repair. I was much less confident that the problem was the video chip. Also, it had been apart so many times that there are some problems with the case. (In fact, this one was dead on arrival way back in 2002 and had a logic board replaced at that time...) Anyway, I followed the same process, though in this case I left the gun on for somewhat longer after the solder scraps melted; with the first one I was not really sure the heat was on for long enough to begin melting the solder balls under the chip.

So, in this case I started up with the machine still disassembled. Crackle, pop and some sparks from a point on the circuit board. Close inspection showed that a surface mount resistor near what I assume are memory chips (the four in a row near the optical drive) had some burn marks. Bummer, I thought. I've killed it. But I noticed some light behind the screen -- which we haven't seen on this computer for more than six months. Pulled the power, plugged it in again, and surprise -- up it came! I find it hard to believe that a logic board with a burned resistor (from which I've seen sparks fly) could possibly work. But working it is. Again, of course, there's no telling for how long.

I understand concerns some people have about attempting this somewhat-proven repair method. But in some cases it is surely worth the risk? These computers have essentially been replaced for our everyday work. Getting them back alive is a bonus -- we now have a music server for the home network! We live in the backwoods of Portugal. I don't believe we are going to find a reflow business around here, so to all intents and purposes the machines were doorstops. For anyone in this type of situation, I'd recommend giving this a try. If nothing else, it is immensely satisfying to see a brick come back to life!!

Cheers and thanks a million for the thread. I'm off now to take a photograph of four-in-a-row iBooks!

Steve
     
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Aug 15, 2007, 07:55 AM
 
OK, so my previous post was about a pair of iBooks on which I tried the heat gun method.

The first is still running fine, but I've lost the sound. The speakers crackle. Quite likely some carelessness in putting the thing back together.

The second is more interesting. It ran for a day after the repair. I put it to sleep and shut it down a few times. No problem. Then, after being shut down overnight, it wouldn't start up. Exactly the same symptoms.

I went through the process again. Started up just fine -- without the crackling resistors this time! But again, after being shut down for a while it wouldn't start up again.

Today I took it apart and just warmed up the circuit board with the heat gun -- probably to around 80°C. Sure enough, it came back and started up immediately. It seems that when it gets cold I have the problem.

My supposition is that EITHER the problem is with the solder balls and I haven't managed to reflow them OR there is another joint on the circuit board that is somehow heat-sensitive. I suppose it is possible also that a component has failed (but works when it is hot).

Anyone got any ideas? I can't locate a problem by, for example, tapping the circuit board while the machine is running. But so far I've only taken off the bottom case and the problem may be on the other side of the board.

Steve
     
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Aug 15, 2007, 01:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by Gankdawg View Post
UPDATE: My G4 had been consistently failing again, after shimming the first time. I put more shims in last night and I used the 'book for about an hour with no problems. If it fails again, I may try shipping it off for reflowing. Somebody above had some good advice, though, saying the iBook is not made to flex so don't carry it with one hand. I will be doing making sure I carry it with two hands now, or at least not flexing it if at all possible.
UPDATE 2: Seems that shim attempt #2 is failing. iBook shuts off pretty quick now. Haven't decided if I will ship it off for relow or not.
     
 
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