Repair notes for various computer equipment
AlphaServer 1000A Storage Bay Door ButtonThe button of the storage bay door is broken and now the storage bay door is constantly open.
The "hinges" of the bay door button are two small plastic pins and are not very strong. After some time pushing the bay door button the pins broke and the button can no longer hold the storage bay door in its place (i.e. swings open every time). So, I made holes in the face plate where these plastic pins used to be and inserted an iron pin which would hold the bay door button in place and thereby the storage bay door.
- For the upper hole I used the blade of a small hacksaw to create a hole of 2 mm. For the bottom hole I drilled a hole of 3 mm. This was a bit tricky because the location of the bottom hole is difficult to reach with a drill, so I carefully drilled from different angles until the hole was deep enough (I actually drilled all the way to the horizontal air gap of the face plate). See picture of holes.
- Next, I took an iron pin of about 3.5 cm long and 2 mm thick. Bend half a centimeter at a right angle to make a handle of this pin. Insert the handle in the drilled holes to see if it fits. Also check whether the handle has a clear path from the upper hole down through the bottom hole of the bay door button; remove any plastic material from the button that's in the way of the handle.
- Finally, put the bay door button into the face plate along with the spring. Push down the spring and insert the handle in the holes (i.e. the drilled holes, the holes of the button, and the holes of the spring). This may be a bit of tinkering, but when succeeded the bay door button will be rock-solid.
DECpc Trackball Eject Mechanism (1)The DECpc laptops have a funny mouse pointer assembly (it's actually called the Trackball). The trackball assembly is mounted on a metal sheet which is curved upwards at the end of the trackball assembly. When the trackball is unused it is retracted in a small cavity of the system casing. In order to use the trackball, the user pushes the eject button near the trackball assembly causing the assembly to pop out of the cavity. The trackball is then positioned along the side of the laptop casing.
Unfortunately, handling the eject button to hard may break a plastic pole of the eject mechanism. Attached to this plastic pole is a spring which (indirectly) holds the trackball assembly in the aforementioned cavity. If the pole breaks, there's no tension to the spring and the trackball assembly contineously pops out. If you still have the broken piece of the plastic pole, you can try glue to fix it. If the pole is gone, you can try to make a small cut in the stub of the pole. Next, you can hook the spring to the stub and ensure the spring aligns with the cut you made. There's enough room for the spring to hook to the stub. The eject mechanism should now be working again.
DECpc Trackball Eject Mechanism (2)Someone has been rocking the trackball assembly too hard, so now the metal strip attached to the trackball no longer ejects properly. The metal strip is held in position by a plastic cover. This plastic cover is attached to the base chassis by a number of tiny nails sticking through small holes in the base chassis. The nails are made of plastic and they seem to be molten to the plastic cover. Strong enough for normal use, but not always.
So, I drilled some holes in the plastic cover, matching the aforementioned small holes in the base chassis, and used tiny screws, washers, and nuts to tighten the plastic cover to the base chassis. The screws and nuts need not be too tight else the metal strip of the trackball assembly won't move smoothly.