Help/Advice needed on damaged components

By blarghness
Mar 11, 2006
  1. Hi all,

    I have an Intel D915PGN motherboard on a CPU that was recently shipped to me via a friend (I moved away and couldn't take everything all at once). I asked this friend to put extra insurance on the package, as well as request a Fragile sticker, but...even though he's an IT guy, he did not. I've already filed a claim but am not expecting much of anything.

    The packaging was fine but the inside of the CPU would make anyone think it had fallen out of the FedEx truck a few times. :eek:

    I'll list the damages I've noticed below. My question: would you guys risk reattaching everything and trying to fire her up? Most of the damages are superficial, but I don't have any experience with physically damaged components, so I would like a second/third/trillionth opinion before I try it. I'm terrified of frying the rest of my components...

    So, the damages:
    1. The most major is the motherboard. Well, its heatsink to be exact. 6-10 pins in the bottom left corner look like a bunch of palm trees after Katrina. They're touching, which is why I'm so worried. However, the heatsink does not appear to have detached from the motherboard in any way. There are some visible scratches on the base of the motherboard, probably from my PCI cards falling out, but it's near the bottom, in an area where I see no copper microwiring or whatever you call it.
    2. Second on the list is the power supply. Well, in itself it seems to be fine, but it looks as if someone made an unsuccessful attempt to rip it from the case. It had four screws securing it to the case when I packaged it; now it has two. One screw has disappeared, one has ripped out of the little hole where it secures to the case, one seems to be unharmed and one is at an angle, slightly warping the screw-hole. The entire power supply is at an angle actually.
    3. The video card. It doesn't seem to have suffered any visible damage but it did completely fall out of its PCIe slot, as well as all my other PCI cards...I am fairly sure that it was the culprit behind the bent heatsink pins.
    4. The case. It's fine, other than the warping where the power supply is mounted...but still.

    Yes, the PCI cards and the power supply were all screwed in nicely. Yes, I've already filed a claim with fedex. Yes, I am completely baffled as to my poor baby's injuries. :p

    Any opinions on the safety behind straightening the pins and trying to turn it on would be appreciated very much. I'd rather not go through the whole process of replacing a mobo...but I'm not about to risk all my other components unless I get some more opinions.

    Thanks so much in advance...!
  2. dmill89

    dmill89 TS Guru Posts: 475

    I'm asumeing by the bent pins you are refering to the cpu pins. Since I have never seen a leat sink with pins and the processer and slot below it have pins.

    Well if there is a short your powersupply's protection should kick in and protect the components by cutting the power. Given that your board is an LGA775 and the pins are in the motherboard and not the processer.Since the replacement of the motherboard is fairly inexpensive (especially compared to the cost of the other components)it may be better to replace it.
    Either way the thermal compound at the base of your heat sink has probably been seperated and new thermal compound needs to be applied before running.I once streghtened bent pins on a socket 754 athalon64 and it worked fine so if you can get the pin's so that they only make contact were there susposed to you should be fine.However the LGA775 ZIF system has no gides for the pins just contacts that the pins touch so you have to get the pins perfectly steright or they can contact multiple contacts on the processer and short it out. If you can better describe the damage or get some pics I may be able to help you more.

    IF the aluminum fins on the heatsink are bent there is no signifigent electrical damage unless something under it is damaged and there ia no need to worry about shorting anything.
    as I said earlier pics would help alot
  3. blarghness

    blarghness TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Hi, thanks so much for your help! I have linked to pics; I didn't want to totally spam you guys with huge digicam photos, so I just linked to photobucket. The links are the ones that are single-underlined.

    But here some of them are...



    Sorry about the poor digicam is not present at the moment so I'm surviving with my cell phone camera :(
  4. dmill89

    dmill89 TS Guru Posts: 475

    Those are just the alumium fins on the heatsink and serve no electronic purpose. Your system should run fine with them like that.streightening them may help cooling but it is not vital to operation and since that heatsink has several fins it doesn't affect cooling that much. Since the heatsink is still attached there is no need to apply new thermal compound.
  5. blarghness

    blarghness TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks a lot for your help, saved me a motherboard! :D

    I carefully straightened out the heatsinks fins (not pins...ahem...sorry) and made everything was reconnected and secure. I tell you I hadn't had to use as much courage in a long time as I did turning that machine on for the first time...LOL.

    Everything seems to be in fine working order but the hard drives. One is dead to the world (luckily, my storage drive...I was smart enough to do meticulous backups so the loss here is merely the physical drive itself, not the data on it) boot drive gives me an error when I try to boot from it but I believe this is because I still have a jumper on it identifying it as Master. Other than that and being a bit slow, it seems to be fine. My next paycheck will go towards a SATA hard drive. Mmm...SATA...;)

    Your help was very, very much appreciated! :)
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