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Can this 5170 motherboard be saved?

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    Can this 5170 motherboard be saved?


    Found this 5170 AT system in sort of rough shape and things got worse when I looked inside. The original lithium battery split open and leaked (hey, thanks Tadiran!) over a small portion of the motherboard around the keyboard connector. The system powers on, but won't POST or boot.

    It seems possible that a baking soda paste might help clean it up. Has anyone had experience cleaning up one one of these before?

    While I'd love to get it working, if it's hopeless I'd like to know that too.


    DBL POST - please delete -
    '. \ / .'
    '. .'``'. .'
    Currently seeking a Compaq Deskpro 386


      If you are good with a dremel and soldering, it can be saved. I have repaired boards before. If you are not its pretty close to junk, value wise. Some 5170 owner might love to have it for spare parts.

      In that condition I use it for parts. Looking at the all the ics and diodes in the picture, the rust/corrosion most likely crept into the plastic/silicon. Just to get her running would require new components. But it is repairable if you want a challenge...
      '. \ / .'
      '. .'``'. .'
      Currently seeking a Compaq Deskpro 386


        Use vinegar with lithium cell or NiCd leakage, not baking soda. The leaked electrolyte is basic, not acidic.

        I've seen worse damage, so yeah, it probably can be saved by someone with a little patience and skill.
        Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.


          Originally posted by Chuck(G) View Post
          Use vinegar with lithium cell or NiCd leakage, not baking soda. The leaked electrolyte is basic, not acidic.
          Ah, thanks for that bit of knowledge - I would have been making the problem worse! Guess it's time to see what Q-Tips and vinegar can do.

          <*> Jim


            After you clean and neutralize the board, any traces that are oxidized, corroded or rusted, try sanding lightly with a file/dremel/fingerboard till you get bare copper. Afterward , use some flux and tin the traces with a good quality solder ( I use silver solder for trace repair). Afterward cover the traces with a thin coat of clearcoat or clear nail polish. I use high temp bbq clearcoat. I spray a small amount into the cap, and use a flux brush to paint it over the traces. This will help with future oxidation on the tinned traces. Any broken traces will need to be bridged with wire or pins. For pins, you will need a small drill bit. I suggest if using pins to use brass or gold plated.

            Looks like you will have to desolder a few things (the 74xxx ics) , and most likely need a new keyboard header. The 74xxx ic's might need replacement also. If you have trouble finding them, I am pretty sure others here on the board have suitable replacements, if not even myself! So don't fret too much, if your up for the challenge I say go for it! What do you have to loose? If not someone here may pay a couple bux + shipping for it, just for the pride of repairing it, or for the proms alone.

            As for the best repair, it would be just too much effort. If it was rarer I could see desoldering everything and electrolysis the board. Seems like too much work for an AT motherboard though. I have done this with great results using atari/colecovision/nes games. But these pcb's have very few ics.
            Last edited by twolazy; June 30, 2011, 01:19 PM.
            '. \ / .'
            '. .'``'. .'
            Currently seeking a Compaq Deskpro 386


              I'd call it a parts unit. With a little patience you can find 5170 boards, if you're married to it. I recently snagged one for $10 plus shipping off of ebay - on a 10 day auction, no less. If you're not married to the 5170, snag a clone 286 board and pop it in there.
              Currently seeking:
              * Roland MPU-401/AT (with daughter card header)
              * Magitronic K-156 Keyboard (5pin DIN w/ XT-AT switch)
              I also collect PC and C64 Sierra On-Line software!


                It is repairable. Just takes time and patience.

                I'd spend the time trying; if you fail you can always uses it as a parts board. Give it a go!


         Flat trace repair
         Eyelet repair

                  Good videos on repair
                  '. \ / .'
                  '. .'``'. .'
                  Currently seeking a Compaq Deskpro 386


                    Yes, it's repairable, there is hardly any damage there. I have a 5170 board where the battery exploded out through the lead hole and sprayed it's insides all down the back edge of the board and the back edges of the cards.

                    A little stop bath mixed down to 20%, a brass bristle brush, a couple of trips through the dishwasher and it worked fine. It would take a damn good amount of time to eat through the traces. Might thin them down a bit, but, not to the point of high resistance.

                    Re-spray the solder mask and it's as good as new.
                    Legacy Computers and Parts

                    Sales of, parts for, and repairs to, Vintage and Legacy computers.


                      Just throwing in my 2 cents. If it won't POST or boot could also be a memory problem! But more than likely it's the board damage. Alao what type of AT board is it? Type 1,2 or 3?


                        Thanks for everyone's thoughts and contributions on this. Once I clear enough 'slop space' the cleanup will begin.

                        Originally posted by Chromedome45 View Post
                        Just throwing in my 2 cents. If it won't POST or boot could also be a memory problem! But more than likely it's the board damage. Alao what type of AT board is it? Type 1,2 or 3?
                        Yes, other things could also be wrong (it pretty much just sits there not making a peep), but the leak damage is so obvious, that seems to be the place to start. I don't know enough about these to tell you which type it is - how does one tell? It does have the weird piggy-backed memory chips. (How the heck does THAT work??)


                          Originally posted by jharre View Post
                          I don't know enough about these to tell you which type it is - how does one tell?
                          Your "piggy-backed memory chips" indicates that it is a type 1 board. I can't see how motherboard type information is relevant yet, because the motherboard may start to POST once the mess has been cleaned up.

                          Originally posted by jharre View Post
                          It does have the weird piggy-backed memory chips. (How the heck does THAT work??)
                          The two chips are slighly different.
                          As an example of one way that it could be done:


                            Mouse and/or cat urine is far worse in my experience than battery electrolyte. In the case of mouse, there's using a inch or so of feces and hair to remove from the board as well.
                            Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.