Nexus 5 power switch replacement

Another older repair I am getting around to post. This time it’s a Nexus 5 phone that acquired an interesting habit of getting stuck in a random reboot loop. One moment it’s working fine, next it’s stuck in a boot screen with Google logo, then buzzes and reboots to the same thing. After a bit of Googling around, I realized that the likely culprit is a power button getting stuck. To confirm, I’d smack it a bit and watch the phone exit reboot loop and work for a while. That smacking was satisfying but not sustainable if I wanted the thing to survive. So back to ebay we go. I suppose Mouser/Digikey were also an option if I felt like desoldering the original, measuring it and then combing through all similar parts to find the fit. Instead I let other people do that.  Most sellers had an exact replacement switch, but one claimed a new and improved one. It also looked a bit better so for $2 shipped I grabbed one. The typical title for these is “4mm Power On /Off Volume Switch Button For LG Nexus 5 D820 D821 Optimus L4 E440”.

Tiny thing

Tiny thing

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FrankenPad part deux

Hot on the heels of a touchpad swap in my “new” Thinkpad T440P, come the next two upgrades: backlit keyboard and an IPS display. I shall call this machine Frankenpad as it’s rapidly deviating from the original configuration (20AWS series).


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A tale of buttons

It all started innocently enough.

I finally decided to replace my 6 years old Thinkpad X200 with a bit more modern used T440P. More power, better battery life and all the other modern goodies were all things I was looking forward to. Unfortunately I also knew that for the 44x series Lenovo changed the design of the trackpad to a single piece clickable square. No more beloved buttons, so easy to use with the trackpoint. Not a big deal- plenty of people reported using the newer design of the trackpad off a T45x series to get those buttons back, so I figured i’ll just swap it in. The laptop came in, and I tried really hard to like the trackpad as is. No go: total lack of feel, constantly pressing RMB instead of LMB and a very annoying clicking sound  heard in the whole house. It had to go!

Look ma, no buttons!

Don’t mess with success, Lenovo!

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BioBrite SunRise Clock backlight brightness hack

Here is another silly hack I’ve finally got around to do and document. We have a  BioBrite SunRise  alarm clock at home that nicely simulates sunset and sunrise.The clock is almost perfect with one notable exception- backlight is exceptionally bright even when it dims it for the night mode. This post describes how I fixed that.  Continue reading

Vintage multimeter – Weston 6000

Another addition to my growing collection of vintage multimeters is this Weston Schlumberger Model 6000 meter from the mid 1970s

Old vs new

Old vs new(ish)- notice how square it is

The meter was listed as in almost like new condition except for a spot on the front panel. It came with (very rubbery) test leads and an actual printed user manual- a rare thing these days.The Ebay posting was worded very carefully to never mention whether the thing actually works, so I figured it did not really matter. If it does not- teardown turns into repair attempt and either way we learn something new. Continue reading