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Anyone know how to disassemble a Colorado?


djcache
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Hi all,

 

Anyone got any tips for disassembly of a Garmin Colorado 300 to the point that I'll be able to resolder the shell of the mini USB back onto the board?

 

I'm not uncomfortable working on electronic gear (tech by trade until career change many years back) but there are often tips/tricks/order to do things that make these things easier. That's what I'm asking.

 

I did pop the back off for a quick look but I've left it for now as it's working, just the cage around the connector on the board is loose. Too many corrugated roads while plugged into a power lead I guess.

 

Any help appreciated.

 

DJ

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Did you call Garmin? maybe they will fix it for free.

 

Garmin Australia fix something for free? LOL

 

They'll quote a standard repair charge - from memory about $200 for which they'll bin it and send me another one.

 

I'll have go at repairing it. If that fails I'll buy a new one from the US.

 

Can't believe no-one on here's pulled one apart!

 

DJ

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There's nothing to repair, unless you have the components. Nobody has them, so nobody opens a Colorado.

If the connector came lose of the circuit-board, I doubt soldering alone helps.

 

I just peeked in my Oregon, don't you see screws? So a philips would do the opening job for a start.

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I think back in the old days Garmin was much more willing to do the occasional free-bee... but that seems to have changed. I had the exact problem described by the original poster, called Garmin, and for $99 they sent me a "new/refurbished" unit. That $99 (US) fee is their standard practice for any repair now.

 

Did you call Garmin? maybe they will fix it for free.

 

I realize in Quantum Mechanics all things that can happen do but I am not sure how many of those universe's have free repair.

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There's nothing to repair, unless you have the components. Nobody has them, so nobody opens a Colorado.

If the connector came lose of the circuit-board, I doubt soldering alone helps.

 

I just peeked in my Oregon, don't you see screws? So a philips would do the opening job for a start.

 

You'd be surprised. I have the drivers & popped the back off a while ago. I dare say to go further there is a particular order things must be done in to avoid unnecessary damage.

 

Most mechanical faults on electronic gear can be easily repaired. I'm a paramedic these days but for 10 years I was a technician. The reason no one repairs products now is the cost of labour. If your minimum labour charge out is $60-80 an hour (fairly standard for a technician in Australia - at least that's what the company charges, not what they pay their staff) then no one is going to pay for an hour of labour to repair a GPS that's realistically worth about $100 second hand.

 

That's why you can't get stuff repaired, not because you can't get parts. Most of the parts like the USB socket are fairly generic, and if you know what you are doing there are ways to fix them back onto the board even if the pads have lifted, but I'm hoping it's a simple failure of the solder joint.

 

Either way, if I can get it apart, I can fix it purely because my time is my own, I'm not paying for it.

 

Dave

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Hi all,

 

Anyone got any tips for disassembly of a Garmin Colorado 300...

 

hammer1.jpg

 

RAOFLMAO!!

 

At least it's an estwing - top quality hammer. I have one just like that hanging above the work bench so if I get desperate you never know....

 

DJ

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Hi djcache,

 

Did you get any success on this? I am having the same problem and am just getting down to business. Colorado is around three years old now - so no warranty and very little resale value. Will post any success if and when I get there.

 

Looks to have an interesting set of intestines...

 

hugh

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Hi Hugh,

 

I got it fixed.

 

Once you remove the back you will see the main board.

 

The ribbon connectors are all easily released by lifting the clamp gently, it's the brown collar around the base of the ribbon. They only lift about half a millimetre.

 

There are two black parts that look to be part of the case sides half way down either side of the board. They take the middle torx screw holding the back on on either side. They are actually separate to the board & the case. If you flex the sides of the case firmly they separate from the side. They have a tooth that clips into the inner side of the case.

 

Spread the case side firmly but carefully and lift the corner of the board so that one side clips clear then the other.

 

There's a white plug going onto the base of the antenna socket on top that just clips off.

 

The antenna is a real PITA. The antenna cable on mine was soldered straight to the board. It's actually a very fine coax, and the copper on the board is a massive heatsink for a fine soldering iron tip so it's a bit tricky. Being coax you don't want to create a short by heating the shield and melting the inner insulator. It's alot more heat resistant than I thought it would be but I would take great care here. Maybe mine was because it was a refurbed unit, but I reckon they would have plugged this when new. It doesn't figure in a production environment that it would be like this.

 

The screen is in a rubber surround like an iPhone 4 case. It's a press fit into the case. You just carefully extract it. A small lever helps. Don't pull on the ribbon.

 

Once you have the board & screen out you can undo the screws holding the black top surround on. This exposes the connector.

 

It's glued in. Rather than heat it and try and remove it I opted to solve the problem a different way.

 

The cage that forms the mini USB outer was actually fatigue fractured, not the solder joint, so I couldn't have repaired it that way anyway.

 

I made up a mix of 15 min epoxy & microballoons (but you could leave them out) and sharpened an icecream stick to a point. Using the point I dripped epoxy into the gap between the cage & the case being ultra carefull not to get it in the socket. I went all the way round using the side of the external antenna socket for support also. I never plug an antenna onto mine anyway so it doesn't matter that the glue is there but it does impact on the top going back on. See below.

 

Then to get the case back on once the epoxy cured I reversed the process. The only difference was that I trimmed away the top where it had to sleeve over the antenna socket to clear the epoxy that was now there.

 

Just be careful again soldering the antenna cable back on the main board when you get to that bit, and the antenna has a keyway on it so it only goes into the top in one direction. Might be to do with the compass, but I'm not sure.

 

Hope this helps,

 

Dave

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Did you call Garmin? maybe they will fix it for free.

 

I realize in Quantum Mechanics all things that can happen do but I am not sure how many of those universe's have free repair.

I thought that Quantum Mechanics say that until you open the Garmin, it will be simultaneously in both a fixed and broken state.

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TomToad makes a good point, that is another principle of quantum mechanics which brings to mind alternate way to repair it. Place it in a box and then keep reopening the box and it is possible that its state may change to fixed.

 

Kind of reminds me of the saying "If a man speaks in the forest and there is no woman present, is he still wrong."

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Just an addendum to the next guy that finds this thread. I just successfully repaired mine as well. If you remove the sealer on the circuit card that the plug is attached to by carefully cutting the sealer that it is glued in with you can push it from the back and pop it out. This makes it much easier to repair. Once I got it out and cleaned up it was a simple matter of resoldering it back on to the board and putting a small solder bridge across the breaks.

 

When you put it back together put a few small drops of super glue on the bottom of the circuit board and reseat into the housing. It will not be sealed as good as the factory but I try not to drop mine in lakes (anymore).

 

Note that if you attempt this with a radio shack soldering iron it will be difficult. I was using two very expensive micro irons used for surface mount work and I did it under a microscope.

 

Jim "Butterdish"

 

Hi Hugh,

 

I got it fixed.

 

Once you remove the back you will see the main board.

 

The ribbon connectors are all easily released by lifting the clamp gently, it's the brown collar around the base of the ribbon. They only lift about half a millimetre.

 

There are two black parts that look to be part of the case sides half way down either side of the board. They take the middle torx screw holding the back on on either side. They are actually separate to the board & the case. If you flex the sides of the case firmly they separate from the side. They have a tooth that clips into the inner side of the case.

 

Spread the case side firmly but carefully and lift the corner of the board so that one side clips clear then the other.

 

There's a white plug going onto the base of the antenna socket on top that just clips off.

 

The antenna is a real PITA. The antenna cable on mine was soldered straight to the board. It's actually a very fine coax, and the copper on the board is a massive heatsink for a fine soldering iron tip so it's a bit tricky. Being coax you don't want to create a short by heating the shield and melting the inner insulator. It's alot more heat resistant than I thought it would be but I would take great care here. Maybe mine was because it was a refurbed unit, but I reckon they would have plugged this when new. It doesn't figure in a production environment that it would be like this.

 

The screen is in a rubber surround like an iPhone 4 case. It's a press fit into the case. You just carefully extract it. A small lever helps. Don't pull on the ribbon.

 

Once you have the board & screen out you can undo the screws holding the black top surround on. This exposes the connector.

 

It's glued in. Rather than heat it and try and remove it I opted to solve the problem a different way.

 

The cage that forms the mini USB outer was actually fatigue fractured, not the solder joint, so I couldn't have repaired it that way anyway.

 

I made up a mix of 15 min epoxy & microballoons (but you could leave them out) and sharpened an icecream stick to a point. Using the point I dripped epoxy into the gap between the cage & the case being ultra carefull not to get it in the socket. I went all the way round using the side of the external antenna socket for support also. I never plug an antenna onto mine anyway so it doesn't matter that the glue is there but it does impact on the top going back on. See below.

 

Then to get the case back on once the epoxy cured I reversed the process. The only difference was that I trimmed away the top where it had to sleeve over the antenna socket to clear the epoxy that was now there.

 

Just be careful again soldering the antenna cable back on the main board when you get to that bit, and the antenna has a keyway on it so it only goes into the top in one direction. Might be to do with the compass, but I'm not sure.

 

Hope this helps,

 

Dave

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