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Author Topic: button replacement options  (Read 495 times)

bkenobi

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button replacement options
« on: February 12, 2018, 06:19:42 PM »

I have a device that uses a PCB mounted button.  The button has become finicky recently and only works when pressed at certain angles. I don't see any numbers on it, so I'm not sure how to source a replacement.  I've vontacted the manufacturer, but who knows if they will help.  Any suggestions on how to gind a 1 for 1 replacement?
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JeffVolp

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2018, 06:40:43 PM »

By "button" are your referring to an actual pushbutton switch or one of those little PCB dimples?  If an actual pushbutton switch, Mouser should have something similar if not an exact replacement.

I may be able to help more if you provide a photo of the actual switch.

Jeff
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bkenobi

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2018, 06:51:36 PM »

Yes, it's a soldered on pushbutton not a dimple.  I can post a picture, but wasn't sure if certain dimensions would help, too.
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JeffVolp

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #3 on: February 12, 2018, 07:19:40 PM »

A photo may be sufficient.  You could also go to mouser.com, search for pushbutton switches, and try to narrow down from the 20K choices by using the filter chart.

Jeff
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bkenobi

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #4 on: February 12, 2018, 08:12:12 PM »

4 solder points 90 degree push button
« Last Edit: February 12, 2018, 08:19:15 PM by bkenobi »
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JeffVolp

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2018, 04:08:16 AM »

Thanks for the photos.  That is a strange one.

After narrowing down to about 600 pushbutton switches with through-hole mounting, I went through 23 pages and didn't find an exact match.  Mouser has perhaps the best inventory of electronic components in the industry.  They supply almost all the components I use for the XTB products.  If they don't have it, I'm afraid it may be very difficult to find.  I had a similar problem with a Panasonic receiver years ago and bought a non-working one on eBay to cannibalize.

Jeff
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bkenobi

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2018, 04:35:17 AM »

When reviewing the pictures, I noticed a couple number "Y8" and "43" that weren't visible without the flash.  I tried searching for them hoping I'd locate a manufacturer code, but found nothing.

I got an email from the vendor and today they are claiming that the unit has a lifetime warranty on parts but the labor is not covered.  Yesterday they told me that I'd be out up to the cost of the module ($165 plus shipping and labor) for a unit I paid around $250 for.  Under that scenario, finding a push button was a no-brainier.  If they are actually going to cover the parts cost, then it's probably worth it to wait the 2 weeks for them to fix it.  That said, shipping a push button from china or Mouser is probably less expensive than domestic shipping for this thing due to size.   :o
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JeffVolp

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« Last Edit: February 13, 2018, 04:57:23 AM by JeffVolp »
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bkenobi

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2018, 05:00:51 AM »

That looks really close.  I found it on Mouser, too.  When I went up a level on Mouser, I was able to filter and "right angle" was an option.  Adding a couple other filters, there are 79 options of which a handful look physically close.  I'll call the vendor this morning, but I really appreciate your help finding a cost effective alternative!

Come to think of it, I think I ordered a bunch of buttons from either MCM or AllElectronics a few years ago.  Some of the buttons had really long buttons, but I wonder if there isn't one there that would work.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2018, 05:03:01 AM by bkenobi »
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bkenobi

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2018, 06:44:34 AM »

Well, I think I'll be replacing the button.  The vendor wants $79-99 for "inspection and diagnostics fee".  The module costs $165 and the whole thing is $260.  They really know how to make money on a faulty $0.30 button!   B:(
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bkenobi

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #10 on: February 14, 2018, 05:03:13 AM »

I opened the module and tested the button.  It was definitely intermittently working.  I used a jumper and the module worked perfectly.  So, I went to remove it and had all kind of difficulties due to my trusty aging Radioshack desoldering iron https://www.radioshack.com/products/radioshack-45-watt-desoldering-iron.  Lately, the only way I can get it to work is to use my solder iron to melt the existing solder and sometimes even apply more new solder.  Then the desolder iron sometimes will get a good suction and clean things up.  I replaced the tip years ago and it helped for a while, but RS isn't local anymore.  Any recommendations on a new desolder solution?

Due to these issues, I ended up having to cut the button off and work at removing the remaining pins being careful not to overheat the traces or pads.  I eventually had a pin stuck and had to use a precision dremel bit https://www.rockcliffmachine.com/product/micro-drill-bit-10-pc-set/ to open the hole.

Ironically, after all that, the 9v snap lead broke so now I have to fix that (easy fix and I have the part).   B:(
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Noam

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #11 on: February 14, 2018, 05:20:03 AM »

Any recommendations on a new desolder solution?

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00068IJSG
This one looks very similar to the Radio Shack one I have (my second one - the first RS one died, too)

--Noam
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bkenobi

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #12 on: February 14, 2018, 05:27:55 AM »

That looks exactly like the RS model.  Think someone bought them from the same vendor?  I mean, even the triangle shape of the handle looks the same.

I looked at tips for that unit and they are compatible with the RS model according to Amazon reviews.  I may just buy a couple tips for now.  What I would really like to do is get a rework station, but they seem to be in the $$$ entry point.  I found one on Amazon/ebay for around $60 but I'm skeptical what kind of quality one can get for a solder and air rework station.  I don't believe it has desolder, but it did come up under that search so not sure.  This one is available in other brand names for the same price, too.

https://www.amazon.com/F2C-862d-Soldering-Station-Display/dp/B013DQQ4XO
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Noam

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #13 on: February 14, 2018, 05:31:33 AM »

That looks exactly like the RS model.  Think someone bought them from the same vendor?  I mean, even the triangle shape of the handle looks the same.

I looked at tips for that unit and they are compatible with the RS model according to Amazon reviews.  I may just buy a couple tips for now.  What I would really like to do is get a rework station, but they seem to be in the $$$ entry point.  I found one on Amazon/ebay for around $60 but I'm skeptical what kind of quality one can get for a solder and air rework station.  I don't believe it has desolder, but it did come up under that search so not sure.  This one is available in other brand names for the same price, too.

https://www.amazon.com/F2C-862d-Soldering-Station-Display/dp/B013DQQ4XO
Yeah, that's what I thought when I saw it.
I saw a hack online a while back to turn the RS desoldering iron into a reflow iron. It involved stuffing some copper mesh (like from a desoldering braid or pot scrubber) in the tip of the iron to increase surface area, and then connecting an aquarium pump to blow through the tip. The suggestion was to use silicone tubing, at least for the last few inches connecting to the iron, so it won't melt. The copper mesh in the tip helps increase heat transfer and reduce heat loss from the flowing air.
I never tried it myself, but it sounds like a cool idea.
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bkenobi

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Re: button replacement options
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2018, 05:34:51 AM »

For reference, my current setup isn't fancy but it has been functional to date.  I have a Weller WLC100 solder station http://www.weller-toolsus.com/weller-wlc100-solder-station-40w-120v-w-st3-tip.html and a RS desolder iron https://www.radioshack.com/products/radioshack-45-watt-desoldering-iron.  Like I said, I like the soldering iron but I've only ever had this one and the garbage RS iron https://www.radioshack.com/products/5-piece-basic-soldering-set.

I would like to get something that's better than the weller and ideally had temperature control as well as air and desolder.  These don't have to be a single unit, but they need to be functionally better and looking more professional would be nice too.  This is a multi-use space, so I have to move my soldering equipment and DC power supply to do other things hence a single controller would be nice.
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