Friday, 16 November 2007
Repair a Thinkpad's missing key
Yesterday evening, the letter 'D' just flew off of my Thinkpad keyboard.
"Oh, bother!" I thought, "What an inconvenience!" (or words to that effect).
It was actually rather late and I thought for a few minutes if it were possible to finish what I was typing without using that letter any more in any sentences. It seems to go quite a long way through a paragraph without using that letter very much. Almost unnecessary especially if one uses 'autocorrect' if it is missing (=see - whole paragraph without a single use).
So I then initially set about fixing it. Quite difficult. Other people had spent two hours and then ordered replacement keyboards. Including the key, there's four tiny pieces of fiddly plastic that need to fit together in sort of trapezoid / pantograph shape. I tried for about ten minutes and then rummaged around to find a spare keyboard to plug into the side of the laptop until the next day.
And so today:
How to replace a key on a Thinkpad
1) Don't panic
2) Have plenty of light
3) Ensure all of the pieces have been retrieved. There's four. The key, a black strip, a Small oblong piece and a slightly larger U shaped piece.
4)Assemble the pieces of the trapezoid first, on a sheet of white paper so things don't get lost too easily.
5) The black strip fits onto the large U shaped piece at one end. The two pieces should stay attached.
6) Then the oblong clips into the middle of the U shaped piece.
7) If the assembly is laid in the piece of paper it will look flat with no bumps, if assembled in the correct order.
8) If you lift either end, it will open out something like a miniature deck-chair (pantograph).
9) There are two little pins sticking out from this structure. They engage with the top metal hooks on the keybaord (at the top of where the missing key fits).
10) Clip them in carefully, and the little structure will open over the key's 'piston' and the black oblong piece willl remain flat.
11) Now is the time to push the key top back on. Nerves of steel required.
12) Align the key top with the others in the row, so that it lays on the black oblong.
13) Press down very firmly. There will be a tiny click when the key top engages with the other part.
14) Then normal typing can resume.
I wrote the above because I searched for articles about this on google unsuccessfully, although there were lots of people making the same enquiry.
...And my novel includes a computer fixing hint amongst the storyline. It could make an ideal gift and it's here.
rashbre repair thinkpad broken key keyboard