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Thread: IBM luggable P70 - help with broken screen hinge and a couple other Q's

  1. #1

    Default IBM luggable P70 - help with broken screen hinge and a couple other Q's

    Hey all,

    Longtime lurker, first time poster. I just got what I hoped was a decent deal on a PS/2 P70 that looked to be in really good shape but had a startup error that I thought might just be a dead CMOS battery. Turns out that was right and I was able to bypass the error by hitting F1 and everything else seems to work (haven't fully tested the floppy drive yet, but it's detected and spins, at least).

    But what I discovered in testing, and I don't blame the seller for this if they didn't notice it, is that the left side hinge seems to be broken at the top. It's hard to take pics of but in the one pic under the screen below, it would be the very top of the hinge, where the pin runs through the plastic. I think the top part of that just broke off, so now that hinge isn't really holding the screen on at all - if the same thing happened on the right, I could just lift the screen off. The screen tilt mostly still works, but it's loose, and it doesn't go back in properly - it's a bit crooked, which now I can see in the original photos the seller took too. (I didn't notice at the time.) I found the piece that broke at the bottom of the screen indentation.

    Is there anything I can do about this short of buying a donor system and replacing the whole assembly? How hard is it to actually remove the screen anyway? I suppose I could try to glue it back together if I could just get the screen off.

    Second (and unrelated), is there any way to remove the fan to clean it? I can't even figure out how it's secured in there. Mine is crazy dirty but I have no idea how I'd clean it or the area on the motherboard behind it.

    And third, now that I've replaced the CMOS battery, it does the memory test and just stops; no errors or anything. I'm assuming I need to boot from the reference disk (which I don't yet have; need to make one) but I just want to make sure what to expect so I don't accidentally select to format the hard drive or anything. What do I need to do to just get the computer to boot from the hard drive as it is?

    Thanks for any help...
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Austin, Texas


    That broken piece could be made with a 3D printer. Get some calipers to measure and design the part in some modelling software to be printed. I have a crappy $200 3D printer, but I've been able to fix dozens of unobtanium parts with it.

  3. #3


    I'm thinking to take the machine apart and look at those hinges - I've found a hardware maintenance manual and it doesn't look too difficult.

    Bigger problem right now seems to be that it's stopped booting. It booted once and I got to see everything that's on the hard drive of this thing, which is a lot. Changed the battery, tried moving RAM around and testing different amounts (in case one stick is bad) and it's never booted again. I've made a reference disk with both WinImage and Rawrite and the P70 acts like it wants to boot it (spins up the floppy and makes scratchy noises) but then stops. Initially it wasn't giving me any error message at all, but I've since tried going back to the old battery and reseated the RAM again and now it's not recognizing all the RAM anymore (it gets to 7808KB every time before throwing up 201 and 165 errors) and it's not booting from either the floppy or hard drive.

    I know the floppy drives are often a problem on these computers, but it *seems* like this one should be working... it spins up and attempts to read and there's never been an error that seems related to the floppy. But I don't know if I'm doing something wrong writing the reference disk or what.

    Kinda stumped at this point. Any suggestions from anyone who owns one of these?

  4. #4


    I agree - this looks fixable with a 3d printer. If you make the 3d file, you can get access to 3dhubs (search in google) that gives you a quote for the files you want printed. Since this is small, you might as well go ahead and get a really good print (not FFF, try SLS or SLA - its more expensive by the pound, but given the size of your subject, its not a problem). Start by investing in a precise inch/milimeter measurer, then build it in say, 3dsketchup.



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