Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Replacing a Zune 80 glass screen

My Zune has a history of breaking itself while I'm fixing it. Last time I took it apart, I got it to WORK again, but cracked the screen. This weekend when I was in a portable-electronics-screen-buying-and-replacing mood, I decided I'd grab a Zune glass as well.

So, let's get started. For the sake of completeness, I'll go through the entire process, even though it's partially documented here.

  • Zune 80/ 120 (I guess the HDD size doesn't matter. Second generation or above, non-flash, non-HD (where HD stands for High Def, not Hard Drive))
  • New screen
  • T4 screwdriver
  • Tiny electronics flat head screwdriver (I prefer size 2.5 - 4.5) or a case opener tool

  1. Remove the plastic clip from the top of the Zune with the flat screwdriver or case opener tool
  2. Unscrew the two T4 screws at the top of the Zune

  3. Carefully, take the flat head screwdriver and gently pry, starting at the top where you just removed the T4 screws, and work your way all the way around. What you're doing here is undoing the clips all around the casing. **This is the part where I cracked my screen last time**
  4. At this point, you should be able to remove the entire aluminum back, and see the Zune's nasty internals.

  5. Remove all that #$%@ tape!
  6. Take out the 6 screws holding down the motherboard. There are three pairs, each pair is a different size. Keep them in order! *Note - when you take out the screws on the side, a metal clip will also come loose.

  7. For safety's sake, I removed the hard drive at this point. Lift the black flap on the ribbon cable connector. Use the flat head screwdriver to gently pry this up. Start from one end, and work your way to the other. This is a long tab, and will likely take more than one (probably two) pry-points to lift. (I know the picture shows the screwdriver in the middle. . . . disregard that :-|. . . . it was only for illustration's sake)

  8. Now, gently pry the board up with the flat screwdriver. Go evenly and CAREFULLY all the way around until you can lift the motherboard out of the case.

Whew. . . . now for the hard part.
Removing the Glass Screen from the casing
I won't post the failed attempts and pictures of me trying to get this glass out; I don't wanna upset those who get queasy at the sight of blood. . . .

Nah, just kidding. Bud it did take me some time to figure this out. The glass is held in with a strong adhesive. I tried pushing it out, scoring around the edges, and prying. Some of these worked better than other, then I realized that I could just heat it up with my heat gun! Then I realized that I don't have a heat gun. Then I realized that my wife does!

HA! lookit the guy on the box

Apply heat to both sides, pressing the glass out every so often. After the adhesive melts enough, you're in business!

Remove the white tape from the new glass, replace the old one with it, and heat to activate the new adhesive. Put everything back together, and you're in there like swimwear!. . .

. . . . unless you put the hard drive ribbon cable on backwards. In which case, you'll get this screen. Fix it, and you'll get this one!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Replacing an iPhone 3G glass screen

So lemme tell you about my crappy weekend. It all started Thursday night. I had just come back from a lovely night out with the Missus. I took my iPhone out of my pocket and threw it down on the bed. Unfortunately, I missed the welcoming, soft mattress, and hit the cold, hard, unforgiving wooden corner of the bed. The result: a shattered glass screen AND LCD.

To make a long, sad story short, I just opted to buy a new iPhone from the Apple store for $199 the next day instead of paying $150 for new glass and LCD. I traded them the broken one and they gave me the discounted price. I was in a rush when I left the store, so I couldn't stop by Micro Center and buy myself any screen protectors. And I wasn't going to pay the ridiculous prices for any accessories in the Apple store. I didn't want my screen to get smudged, so I didn't put it in the old case I had. So I just went home, happy with my new, unprotected iPhone.

Saturday, I was with my 2-year old nephew. I leaned over to pick him up, and out of my shirt pocket slides my brand new iPhone 3G (no S), kissing the cement floor face first. The result:

So, in a matter of 2 days, I had managed to destroy two iPhone screens. This time, since it was just the glass, I just bought it and decided to install it myself. Here's how:

  • Broken iPhone 3G or 3GS (The glass and LCD are separate on the 3G models. On the OG, they're glued together, making replacement difficult)
  • Replacement glass screen
  • Flat head screwdriver, size 1.5 (or a case opener tool if you're so fortunate to have one)
  • Phillips screwdriver, size 000

  1. Turn off the phone. This is to prevent shorting of any circuitry once we start digging in the iPhone's guts.
  2. Using the Phillips 000, remove the two screws from the bottom of the iPhone
  3. Use the 1.5 flat head screwdriver or the case opener tool to pry the screen up. Place the blade in between the chrome and the glass and separate the screen and LCD assembly from the back of the case.
  4. Carefully tilt the screen/ LCD assembly up so you can see the numbered connections on the board. They are numbered 1, 2, 3. Remove these from the board in order. 1 and 2 are relatively straightforward, just use the flat screwdriver to pry them loose. The connector for 3 has a tab you must lift before it slides out. Proceed carefully.
  5. Once the cables are disconnected, we can separate the LCD from the glass. Using the 000PH, remove the 5 screws indicated in the picture below. Some are covered with black tape, so you'll have to remove that.

  6. Slide, then lift the LCD out of the glass. If you lift it without sliding, you may bend or break parts of the assembly.

  7. Replace the broken glass with the new one, replacing all the screws in their proper places.
  8. Reconnect the ribbon cables.
  9. Slide the glass/ LCD assembly back onto the phone's back.
  10. Replace the two screws.
  11. Use protection! Don't wanna get burned again. . .