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Cracked laptop hinges

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    Cracked laptop hinges

    I'm sure everyone here is familiar with old laptops that have the hinges cracked apart on the inside, resulting in a floppy screen. I was wondering if it is worth trying to fix such a problem, and if it has any other consequences other than making the screen a bit limp?

    You run the risk of shredding the LCD ribbon cable. I normally would only fix it with epoxy only if I didn't have a replacement nearby because the process of epoxying it back together is annoying.
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      Well I certainly don't have a replacement, and unfortunately the bits where the screws go into are completely cracked to bits, so the actual hinge bits would have to be glued to the inside of the casing (no longer unscrewable)

      I'll leave it as it is as long as having the hinges loose in the case won't make the laptop more fragile or pose a threat to the monitor (the monitor uses individual wires not a ribbon cable)


        I have had very good luck with the putty type of epoxy in fixing things like this. While I haven't yet fixed a laptop hinge, I have fixed the ears on my 78 Corvette radio that were broken off. This has been in the car and holding the radio in the right position for 3 years now. Since the radio doesn't have any type of rear support, the stress on the screws and epoxy that they thread into must be greater than a laptop hinge. Especially when bumps occur.
        Looking for: Altair 8800, Ithaca Intersystems boards, software, manuals.


          Thanks, that's encouraging. I'll see if I can get some putty epoxy I noticed the body of the laptop bows upward when opening the monitor so I'm going to have to glue the hinges somehow to prevent this. Only problem is the monitor is practically hardwired in (T3100) so getting the back section far enough off the casing to get at the hinges is going to be very tricky!


            You might also want to see if a solvent-type cement such as Ambroid "Pro Weld" or Tenax 7R, both available at hobby stores. These work differently from glues like epoxy in that they add no material to the joint--they merely soften the existing material so that a joint can be formed after the solvent evaporates.

            I've had great luck with them--the joint is often invisible and is as strong as the original material.

            There are also plastic-specific epoxies, but I don't know much about them.

            Regardless, be aware that old plastics suffer from having their plasticizers out-gas over time, leading to brittleness--and there's not a lot you can do about that.
            Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.


              Very common problem for the IBM N51SX/N51SLC also. I use JB's Cold Weld (make sure it bonds to the plastic; you can also roughen the surfaces where it goes). Build up a body around the plastic standoffs to beef them up.
              Disclaimer: The username IBMMuseum and domain are not affiliated with IBM in any manner


                The 'standoffs' are not just cracked, they have gone to pieces - nothing left of most of them except little shards of plastic that were rattling in the case. I don't think therefore a solvent-type cement would be much use.


                  If you don't mind a little defacing, you might replace the standoffs with traditional brass or aluminum threaded standoffs if the case geometry permits it. The screw through the outside of the case can be a flathead type, so that it at least looks correct.
                  Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.


                    Maybe more relevent suggestions could be made if you included some pictures.
                    Looking for: Altair 8800, Ithaca Intersystems boards, software, manuals.


                      Originally posted by kyeakel View Post
                      Maybe more relevent suggestions could be made if you included some pictures.


                      I think I'll try with epoxy putty to start with, I have managed to get the machine into bits and now have the hinges in clear access. Managed to make a mess of the plastic on the screen housing trying to pry it apart though :'(... (
                      Last edited by Neosodium; February 18, 2011, 01:12 PM.


                        I'd rough up the damaged area before applying the putty. A small file might work or exacto knife. I use a wide blade putty knife when opening these type cases, it lessens the damage. Good luck, I think it'll work just fine.
                        Looking for: Altair 8800, Ithaca Intersystems boards, software, manuals.


                          If the epoxy putty doesn't hold, use some metal standoffs. Bore and countersink a hole through the case for a flathead screw. They'll hold.
                          Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.


                            Okay, it's all back together now and seems to be holding fine (touch wood) so I just need to get the cmos battery sorted now and put a great big sticker over where I damaged the top of the screen cause I keep obsessing over it.


                              Do thinks like bondo and fiberglass filler (the stuff used to fill in dents in cars) work for this kind of thing? There has to be some plastic stuff modelers use also.
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