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Loose screw in monitor

 
 
Dave Hardenbrook
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      09-25-2007
I was working with very tiny screws in a external hard drive enclosure,
and without going into the embarassment of HOW, I lost one of the screws
through the vents in the back of a CRT monitor. After much screaming
and swearing, I have accepted that the screw is lost unless I take to a
monitor tech, but should I not use the monitor, knowing there's a
foreign screw in there that could potentially short something out?

Dave

 
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Mister
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      09-26-2007
On Tue, 25 Sep 2007 14:14:19 -0700, Dave Hardenbrook
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>I was working with very tiny screws in a external hard drive enclosure,
>and without going into the embarassment of HOW, I lost one of the screws
>through the vents in the back of a CRT monitor. After much screaming
>and swearing, I have accepted that the screw is lost unless I take to a
>monitor tech, but should I not use the monitor, knowing there's a
>foreign screw in there that could potentially short something out?
>
>Dave



I wouldn't use it, but then again, that is only my opinion.

I've seen people turn on and continue to use TVs that have fallen off
of wall mounts. These TVs have smashed corners and the color is
something from a scifi movie, but they use them.

I have a degree in electronics and while getting that degree, some of
the other students and I did a lot of dumb things with high voltages.
I know what happens when things get shorted and don't want to be
around when the sparks start flying.

The funniest was hooking 50 VAC to the braces of a fellow student. He
did volunteer for the experiment. His head vibrated!


 
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Shadow36
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      09-26-2007


"Dave Hardenbrook" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) k.net...
>I was working with very tiny screws in a external hard drive enclosure,
> and without going into the embarassment of HOW, I lost one of the screws
> through the vents in the back of a CRT monitor. After much screaming
> and swearing, I have accepted that the screw is lost unless I take to a
> monitor tech, but should I not use the monitor, knowing there's a
> foreign screw in there that could potentially short something out?
>
> Dave
>


It shouldn't be too difficult to take the cover off and shake It out i would
think.


 
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smackedass
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      09-26-2007

Dave,

If it's obviously easy to lift the cover off of the monitor, you may be able
to shake the screw out. Disclaimer: you know the dangers of opening CRTs,
if you somehow electrocute yourself, you may not sue me. Please do exercise
proper judgement, and care.

And, if that's to no avail, depending upon the dynamics of the situation,
like, is the customer worthy? understanding? etc., I'd consider offering the
customer an LCD, that you may have on your shelf, or you may consider
purchasing. Sometimes things like this are the cost of doing business...the
harder part will be being able to acquiece to confess what went wrong (which
I don't think is very egregious), and that you may be out of your power to
do anything about it. Most folks wouldn't give a ****; others may never
call you back.

My opinion, your call.

smackedass

 
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Bill Eitner
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      09-26-2007
Dave Hardenbrook wrote:
> I was working with very tiny screws in a external hard drive enclosure,
> and without going into the embarassment of HOW, I lost one of the screws
> through the vents in the back of a CRT monitor. After much screaming
> and swearing, I have accepted that the screw is lost unless I take to a
> monitor tech, but should I not use the monitor, knowing there's a
> foreign screw in there that could potentially short something out?
>
> Dave
>


Get the screw out.

Set the monitor face (screen) down on a folded bath towel
or pillow, remove the cover screws and carefully remove the
cover. At that point you should be able to pick it up and
carefully turn it face up and shake the screw out onto a
spread out sheet laid out on an open floor. You should be
able to do all of this without touching anything other than
the external plastic.

If you want to take a chance, without removing the cover
you can probably shake the screw into the bottom where it
will harmlessly lay on the plastic cover. At that point
you could use the monitor. However, in my opinion, if
you're going to that much effort why not go all the way
and get the screw out. There are a few sources of high
voltage in the monitor electronics, but in general they
are insulated. In other words, it won't jump out and
bite you. With reasonable care you can get the screw
out without harming yourself or damaging the monitor.

If you want to do a little homework first, there are
probably some web pages that have pictures of the high
voltage areas in CRT monitors. The general layouts are
all basically the same. Stay away from the CRT connectors
(the one at the back of the neck has the focus voltage
which is fairly high, and the one closer to the front
has the anode voltage which is the highest voltage in
the unit), heavy wires and physically large parts like
the flyback transformer (has the heavy wire coming out
that leads to the CRT anode connection) and filter capacitors
(fairly large and cylindrical).

I have a background in component level repair going back
a number of decades. I've had my hands in lots of tube
equipment and been shocked a number of times. Unless you
have a heart condition I wouldn't let this scare you--it's
really not that big a deal. The main thing to consider is
the potential electrical path through your body. The idea
is to avoid a path that is through the heart like from one
hand to the other. That's why electricians will work on
hot panels one handed. In this particular situation, as
long as one or both of your hands are touching only external
plastic you should be fine. Just keep any exposed skin
off of anything metallic. Pulling this off is an experience
you probably won't soon forget, and it will help cement the
idea in your mind that one should be aware of their environment
when working on stuff. Instinctively one should always have
an idea where gravity and momentum might try to deposit a
part. If possible, always try to work in a clear area with
some momentum deadening, part catching, visibly contrasting
material underneath. In a pinch, terry cloth towels work well.
At the very least, have one underneath whatever you're working
on and others covering nearby potential problem areas (like
a vented CRT monitor cover). It only takes a minute to lay
them out, and it'll be more than made up for the first time
they save having to hunt down a lost part or dealing with a
customer after having scratched a piece of equipment. It's
like ESD precautions; some guys blow them off, but the better
guys take the time. It's part of working smarter, which in
the long run is actually faster/more productive.
--
 
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middle_class_warrior
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      09-27-2007
Dave Hardenbrook wrote:
> I was working with very tiny screws in a external hard drive enclosure,
> and without going into the embarassment of HOW, I lost one of the screws
> through the vents in the back of a CRT monitor. After much screaming
> and swearing, I have accepted that the screw is lost unless I take to a
> monitor tech, but should I not use the monitor, knowing there's a
> foreign screw in there that could potentially short something out?
>
> Dave
>

I can't see how the lost would be a serous problem. It might make some
noise if the monitor is moved, but it should settle to the bottom of the
case.

You are smart that you did not try to recover it. Monitors must be
discharged before you work on them.
 
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Dave Hardenbrook
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      10-03-2007
In article <FckKi.2267$WT2.1408@trndny05>,
http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed) says...
>
> And, if that's to no avail, depending upon the dynamics of the situation,
> like, is the customer worthy? understanding? etc., I'd consider offering the
> customer an LCD, that you may have on your shelf, or you may consider
> purchasing.


Fortunately, the monitor was a discard that I used only to test systems
with, so replacement is not really an issue. Still, I recognize working
on that enclosure in proximity to the monitor was a pretty dumb thing
for me to do.

I'm just chalking it up to the kind of "field experience" you don't get
from taking the exams...

Thanks for your feedback.

Dave
 
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