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Northbridge reflow + side question

Last response: in Motherboards
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a b V Motherboard
July 28, 2012 3:41:44 AM

Okay guys/gals, I got a mother board from an HP a6600f, and the northbridge soldering that connects it to the motherboard has broken, I can tellthis because the PC powers up with no beeps, and I do not get a display, even with a VGA card, plus the board is notorious for it. I plan on reflowing the motherboard and probably selling it (as part of a system). I know the procidure for reflowing (I read up on it for quite some time now.) that includes tinfoiling around the NB and heating it with a heat gun for about 10 minutes on each side of the board.

So far I have removed the NB heatsink and to my suprize the NB thermal paste is like GUM (its pink, its sticky, and it wont come off!).

I tried a credit card (recomended by Overclockers) to scrape it off, and after about 10 minutes of scraping, not much came off at all.

So, first question: What will get this blasted thermal paste off!?

Second question: Any tips for the reflow project?

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a c 168 V Motherboard
a b α HP
July 28, 2012 4:59:08 AM

Honestly HP machines are such junk that by the time you get the paste off, reflow it, see if it works, and sell it, you'll have spent more time, money, and effort than its worth.

To make matters worse, the HP a6600f is based on the NForce 600 series which is notorious for having a super hot north bridge that would burn out. It may not be a soldering issue, it could just be completely dead. The entire northbridge put out as much heat as some CPUs.

If you're doing this for a fun project then it's a great place to start because all you've got to lose is a 6-7 year old piece of crap that may not work anyway. If you're doing it for the money, then don't even bother because it's not worth it in the slightest.

Anyway,

To get the paste off you'll probably need a strong solvent. I recommend electronic contact cleaner. You can get some different types but the ones that are HCFC based are the best; unfortunately they're being phased out soon so you may not be able to get them.

As for the reflow project, you're going to need to keep the board completely flat which means putting it in a pair of vice grips if possible. If you don't, the heat gun will warp the board and only make matters worse.
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a b V Motherboard
July 28, 2012 6:59:47 PM

Thanks for the info, got any links to the contact cleaner?
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a b V Motherboard
July 28, 2012 8:27:30 PM

Best answer selected by austinG.
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a b V Motherboard
July 28, 2012 8:27:38 PM

Thanks, I'm doing it for fun, any money is a bonus. (:
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a c 168 V Motherboard
a b α HP
July 28, 2012 8:34:06 PM

awesome, good luck!
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