|I have a soldering iron. Ph34r.
||[Sunday 21st June 2009 at 9:48 pm]
It's really disappointing that so many people now will just bin broken devices, without even considering trying to repair them. So it was rather satisfying to discover that my electronics-fu hadn't degraded too much over the years, and to successfully repair two devices.
victim casualty was a Charg-E (a mini r/c car), mainly as a test that my soldering skills hadn't evaporated. The antenna wire had broken where it was soldered to a small tag, giving it an effective radio range of 2 metres. So, heat it up and suck all the old solder away. Strip the wire, resolder with new lead-free stuff (no-one seems to stock real solder anymore). The joint doesn't look spectacularly good, but does it work? Put the whole thing back together and the signal range is now at least the length of my flat. Result! Now to get a replacement ni-cad for it...
victim patient was my right computer speaker. After prodding it for a bit and unsuccessfully trying to presuade a bead of solder to jump across the gap, I chopped off a 2cm length of solder and tacked it down either side of the break. The joints look nice and shiny, the resistance across it is low (and I've previously measured the current draw on the track as being a few dozen mA, so it's unlikey to heat up), and most importantly I'm listening to James May on the Moon right now with them. Yay!