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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings, all.
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A teen that I know was assembling a new computer, but messed up somehow and crunched his new CPU. (An FX-8320 - more than a couple dollars to replace!) It had a bunch of bent pins and two broke off completely. Rather than toss it in the trash, I decided to give some pin replacement therapy a go.
I unbent the remaining pins carefully with some old giftcards, and set to work.
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The two broken ones would pose a challenge. Pins are very small and difficult to work with.
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Since I had none of the required tools or wire, I had to improvise a bit. No wire stripper for me, but I've got a razor and some pliers!

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I started out by figuring out what kind of wire to use. I gutted this floppy cable, but it turns out they use stranded wires, which are too thin. They break off easily when the socket is locked, which is not good.

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Poor cable - it lost its leftmost wire. It'll never communicate with another floppy drive again! Oh well, off to the recycler with you!

CAT5E also appears to be stranded... good for the signal, but bad for Pin Replacement Therapy™.

And then I thought back to my latest hard drive to give me grief:

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It ended up not being the drive, but rather the cable that was at fault - a cheap $0.62 bulk red SATA cable. I still had it lying around, so... time to die, SATA cable! You caused me enough grief! Maybe there's copper inside of YOU!
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Muahahaha!

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Beheaded, just like that! Your remains shall be used to resurrect a true champion!
I've learned from my past projects that it's a good idea to plan ahead. Since there might be some confusion about which holes to stick the replacement pins into after flipping the CPU upside down, I whipped up a precise drawing in AutoCAD:

F0FtPoQ.jpg
By inserting the copper wire into the socket, locking it, then pressing it flat, I had a good idea of how much was required to act as a replacement pin. Initially I tried to double it and bend the wire around, but this proved too thick. In the end I just cut the wire to only slightly more than the pin's length (I was VERY precise), to ensure it made good contact without touching nearby pins when the CPU clamps down on it.

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My first attempt I had left too much copper wire, and could feel there was too much resistance when pushing the CPU down flat. (before even locking the socket) My second attempt went better. It locked into place, and then it was time for the moment of truth...
Eureka! SHE LIVES!

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The kid was very glad to hear he wouldn't need to buy a new ~$200 CPU.
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(well, not quite, but after 12% tax and stuff it gets pretty close)

Because of that, I unfortunately did not get to overclock it or benchmark it, as he wanted it back ASAP. It is stable though, and he emailed me to say he's got Windows up and running and is reinstalling his games.
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Now I leave you with pictures of the graveyard. (Or at least whatever didn't fall on my carpet or end up in the garbage can.)

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If I do say so myself, a job well done.
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2016 Edit: Fixed broken images.
 

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Should have taken pics with the copper in the socket.

Great job.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostrider85 View Post

did you solder it?
Nope. I'm not that capable at soldering. I'd probably muck up the underside of the CPU real good.

I just used pressure. When the socket locks, it holds the "pin" in place - as long as your "pin" is under ~1mm too large, it makes firm contact with the underside of the CPU without bending and touching other pins.

This sounds really hard to do ( < 1mm!?), but it's not that hard because of the procedure.
1) Insert copper wire in socket. Make sure it's all the way in.
2) Lock socket.
3) Bend wire flat.
4) Unlock socket.
5) Cut wire at roughly the bend point.

My first attempt at #5 was too long (I could feel resistance when trying to lock the CPU down), so I stopped and shaved off a tiny bit more from the wire. Then I tried it again and the CPU went down into the socket much smoother.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Laylow View Post

Awesome!

What did you use to attach the copper to the cpu?
Nothing but pressure.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rian View Post

Should have taken pics with the copper in the socket.

Great job.
Agreed! I wasn't thinking. I also missed out on a picture of the final "pins" next to my finger... But at the end I realized I had almost enough pictures for a complete post, so... ehh... why not?
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It might help someone to know that it's possible.
 

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This project is glorious! Didn't even know this would be possible! Complete and utter awesomeness! +Rep for resurrecting the CPU!

Also, this made me lol
Quote:
I whipped up a precise drawing in AutoCAD:
 

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Good job. I had a scare with my 8350 a few months ago. The chip had been in the motherboard for quite a while, and the thermal paste had set so well that it was pretty much stuck to the chip. When I went to pull the heatsink off the chip, it pulled the 8350 straight out of the socket despite it being locked, and bent two full rows of pins. It took me an entire day to very carefully straighten them all out, avoiding breaking any, and get the chip back in the socket. The last time I had to do this, I worked a knife between the HSF base and the top of the CPU to make sure that it wouldn't pull the chip out again.
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by neo0031 View Post

This project is glorious! Didn't even know this would be possible! Complete and utter awesomeness! +Rep for resurrecting the CPU!

Also, this made me lol
Quote:
I whipped up a precise drawing in AutoCAD:
Haha, thanks!
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When I set out, I wasn't sure I'd be successful - but it worked!
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsc1973 View Post

Good job. I had a scare with my 8350 a few months ago. The chip had been in the motherboard for quite a while, and the thermal paste had set so well that it was pretty much stuck to the chip. When I went to pull the heatsink off the chip, it pulled the 8350 straight out of the socket despite it being locked, and bent two full rows of pins. It took me an entire day to very carefully straighten them all out, avoiding breaking any, and get the chip back in the socket. The last time I had to do this, I worked a knife between the HSF base and the top of the CPU to make sure that it wouldn't pull the chip out again.
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They actually suggest running the CPU hard for 10 or 15 mins to heat it up so that the thermal paste's bonds weaken. I usually run OCCT or something like that to warm it up before taking the HSF off. It avoids scary and time-consuming situations.
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostrider85 View Post

Is the chip owner a friend of yours? I mean, it's good that he accepted it at that condition.
What do you mean? He crunched it, I fixed it. Why would he be anything but thrilled?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kramy View Post

What do you mean? He crunched it, I fixed it. Why would he be anything but thrilled?
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OH, i'm sorry, i misread your post, i thought you are the one who screwed up his cpu, lol.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostrider85 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kramy View Post

What do you mean? He crunched it, I fixed it. Why would he be anything but thrilled?
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OH, i'm sorry, i misread your post, i thought you are the one who screwed up his cpu, lol.
No worries.
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I thought that might be the case.
Quote:
Originally Posted by IAmDay View Post

Wow awesome should of done that with my Phenom X6 before I trashed it
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Aww. If only you had known it was possible! I've got an X6 as well - they're champs! It's still holding its ground in new games, and when I got it it only cost 60% of what the cheapest first-gen i5 cost.

Well, spread the word that it's doable. (If you see anyone with a busted CPU) It might save someone a lot of grief and money.
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It also might be useful for extremely tight budgets, if you like to gamble. Often CPUs with broken pins go on eBay for less than $30?
 

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Nice resurrection! I'm sure the kid is glad it wasn't game over.
 

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amazing autocad scale model
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any idea on how long a cpu with last with a fixed pin?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by edalbkrad View Post

amazing autocad scale model
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any idea on how long a cpu with last with a fixed pin?
Thanks.
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Absolutely no idea. But since the warranty was quite voided, any amount of time is a good amount of time.

Assuming he doesn't unmount the chip/heatsink, I see no reason for the pins to slip. The socket is locked, and there's some pressure on the pins - they should stay put and keep functioning.
 
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