Author Topic: Game Boy Repair  (Read 392 times)

Scav

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Game Boy Repair
« on: September 10, 2016, 06:23:10 AM »
I picked up a broken Game Boy pretty cheap. Vertical lines of dead pixels are pretty common with these.



I saw some videos online showing how easy this was to fix. By rubbing a soldering iron over the lower ribbon cable where it meets the LCD, you could reflow the solder and eliminate the vertical lines.

Using my trusty Weller soldering station I found by the curb a few years ago



Success! All the lines are gone.


Jayfosters

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Re: Game Boy Repair
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2016, 02:17:31 PM »
Awesome. I picked up a gameboy DS that will not turn on at the GW outlet last week. I am going to buy a battery and see if it works. It had a game - Dragonball z in it. There is a lot of money to be made in vintage game stuff.

plongeur66

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Re: Game Boy Repair
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2016, 02:41:07 PM »
I've had some luck using my hot air solder reflow station to fix misbehaving electronics:

Don't forget the flux (for electronics, NOT the stuff from a plumbing supply):

Kester and places like Grainger only offer it in multiple gallon quantities. But feebay sellers will put it in small bottles (at a good markup for themselves). A couple ounces goes a long way.
Biggest pain in my azz right now is cheap OTA converter/DVR boxes.... Homeworx, Iview, etc. I'm not ready to give in and drop ~$400 on a TIVO or Chinamaster. Tuners on the boxes are flaky. Sometimes all stations just disappear. Even more insidious is when the tuner sensitivity is merely reduced. Picture will break up, will have you thinking it's weather or cabling issues. I have a fan sitting under the box, which does something to stabilize it, but not enough. One box would reboot if I very lightly touched it. That problem was fixed 100% when I reflowed the solder near the voltage regulator. Reflowing areas in the tuner would help for maybe a month. Counting 3 boxes that I returned as soon as I saw they were defective, I've been through a dozen of the $30 POSs in two years.
Decided to try an RCA unit instead, should be here next week. Then I read an online review that says it uses the same tuner as the boxes I have already.  >:(
« Last Edit: September 10, 2016, 02:43:42 PM by plongeur66 »

Scav

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Re: Game Boy Repair
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2016, 10:04:36 AM »
I saw a comment on one video recommending a hot air station as ideal. The soldering gun method takes some care. Still relatively easy.

What do you think is the issue with those boxes? Excessive heat melting solder joints?

plongeur66

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Re: Game Boy Repair
« Reply #4 on: September 12, 2016, 11:15:52 AM »
The boxes do get hot, but the solder looks fairly clean. Probably inadequate temperature control when flowing the solder.
Found this post about the RCA unit I ordered several hours after ordering it:
http://www.avsforum.com/forum/42-hdtv-recorders/2348985-rca-dta880-decent.html.
Hoping that I get 6 months out of it rather than 3 days or DOA right out of the package.
Using the soldering iron can be tricky in tight spaces. You could bridge a couple of traces and never see it - which will shut down the device and/or let the smoke out.
Hot air is "no contact", but keep the air flow low so you don't blow components off the board like you're using a leaf blower. Best to blow straight down rather than across the board.