I’ve mended something again! Also, unexpected uses for a potholder.

As I mentioned about a month ago, my PS3 stopped reading discs.  This was vexing for a couple of reasons, but primarily because it was a launch 60GB PS3 with PS2 backwards compatibility.

Sony wants $150 to fix these, and I’m not actually sure that they’ll even fix a 60GB anymore.

On the other hand, some basic internet searching strongly suggested that the bit that had died was the laser module.  Furthermore, these things aren’t TOO expensive.  I got mine from Dealextreme for about 35 bucks, and found a series of videos on youtube that walked me through the whole disassembly and reassembly process.  I had to buy a T10 security Torx driver, which set me back another six dollars, but I am certain that I will use it again in future even though this is the first time that I have ever needed one.

That may be wishful thinking, but it only brought the total cost up to $41.

This is the part in question.  It’s not actually that hard to get to, it just takes a fair bit of time.  There are about 20 screws and a few cable disconnections and reconnections between you and it when you start.

Apart from an issue getting the disc insertion sensor reattached – it is a tiny fiddly connector that was designed to be manipulated by tiny elves, not humans with human fingers – the whole thing went very smoothly.  Oh, I did accidentally format the PS3’s hard drive, but that was an entirely separate issue and I want it on record that that could have happened to anyone who was impatient and not reading prompts before pushing buttons.

I’m not making a strong case for my competency, there.

Anyway, I’ve tested it and it plays my PS2 and PS3 games with no complaints.  Life is good.

The whole process was helped considerably by a chance discovery at Ikea the other day.

Our nearest Ikea did a remodel of their Marketplace section, where all the kitchen gadgets live, and they had some promotions going on that encouraged us to do a little more browsing than we might normally have done.

I was in the pots and pans sections when I noticed these amazing potholders, and immediately bought four of them even though I very rarely have pots that need holding:

I have three desks.  Two have glass tops and the last has a metal top.  These are very nice to work on when doing paperwork or just using a computer, but they are terribly inappropriate work surfaces for anything involving small tools or small parts.  Anything dropped from a height of more than an inch or two or accidentally brushed has a tendency to roll right off an edge.

These things – and I will give them their name, “Gunstig” – are not much more than silicone rubber squares with a sort of waffle texture to them, but they are fantastic at keeping things in place.  As I was pulling apart the PS3, having a couple of these handy meant that I could organize the screws as I was taking them out, making it much easier to put them back in the correct order.

It was a Sunday morning well spent.  I get to have the heady glow of having mended something, and that honestly more than makes up for the initial vexation I felt with Sony over the thing breaking in the first place.


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