I figured I better ask this here instead of the gaming section because my question actually deals with a hardware concern. If you just want the question with no intro, skip to the dotted line.
Okay, so Xbox 360 is known for many faults. I bought a problematic one cheap from a guy off Craigslist, absolutely certain I could repair it and have an awesome gaming system for $20, but it's day 4 and we're almost at the finish line, but not quite.
I fixed all the overheating problems with some copper heatsinks I made out of pennies for the RAM chip and the scaler chip, cleaned up the heatsinks with new paste, reflowed the solder in the motherboard with applied heat, and now it boots up like a charm. Now, it's just the DVD drive.
I can see that somebody at one point attempted a "Pot tweak" on the DVD-drive, but their handiwork broke off a little piece of the potentiometer that controls the voltage to the laser. It was the little screw on the left (the one associated with reading DVDs) Fortunately, I found the little metal piece in the case. Fits perfectly, but doesn't stick.
Here's the deal: I know a brand new laser for the Hitachi drive is only $6 (I already bought one). But being myself, I'd like to know if anybody around here has know-how to reattach the piece that way I can test the resistance to the drive and see if I could get it working. I've got 3 or 4 days before the new laser gets here, so I'll try pretty much anything. I have a plethora of tools.
Right now, when I test the resistance of the 2 pot screws at 20k ohms, I get 3.13 for the unbroken CD pot screw and 0.L (open loop) for the broken one. The cd drive spins CDs, DVDs, and games just fine and the red laser comes in and out, albeit a little weak looking. When the laser goes out, it makes a faint popping noise and is gone. The laser stays very near to the center of the disc that it's reading. The console spins and stops the disc 4 times and then gives "Unrecognized Disc".
That's about all the relevant information I can think of, but if you need more, I'm more than glad to find out. I hardly ever post my problems because usually there's a forum thread that will answer it for me, but I've been googling all day and haven't had one hit that asked what I'm asking now. I'll add pictures too.
So how about it, Tom's geniuses? Can you help me fix my potentiometer before time runs out? I'm all up for guesses. The new laser is coming, so let's have some fun. What would you do?
As always, I'm eternally grateful for the massive brain that is the internet. And thank you Tom for streamlining the process!