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Straightening CPU pins made easier

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Xaltar View Drop Down
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    Posted: 08 Mar 2016 at 4:35pm
I recently saw a post from Tweak Town showing a CPU with practically every pin bent with a caption "how would you fix this". One brilliant comment was simply a picture of a mechanical pencil. As soon as I saw it I remembered using the exact same tool to straiten pins on numerous old 486 and Pentium class CPUs in my youth. It is funny how easily we forget useful information when we don't use it anymore (I have not had to straiten pins for years now).

The trick is surprisingly simple and effective.

You will need:

1. Large gauge mechanical pencil (ideally one close to the gauge of the pins themselves)
2. A small, flat head jewelers screwdriver 
3. A magnifying glass
4. A soldering iron (if a pin breaks off)
5. Solder
6. A lot of patience

Step 1:

Identify the bent pins and if necessary use the small jewelers screwdriver and magnifying glass to carefully bend the flattened pin up enough that you can get the mechanical pencil nib (without lead in it) over the pin.

Step 2:

Carefully insert the pin into the tip of the mechanical pencil and align the bend point to the bottom of the pencil nib so you straiten the pin at it's bend rather than create a kink.

Step 3: 

Very carefully use the pencil to bend the pin back to it's correct position. If this step is a success then move on to other pins, if not and the pin breaks off then proceed to step 4.

Step 4:

Ordinarily a broken pin is a death sentence to a CPU as it is all but impossible to solder in such a tiny space. However, a steady hand and your trusty mechanical pencil may allow you to actually do it. 

4a: Make very sure that the pin does not get lost and remains in the tip of the pencil.

4b: Using the soldering iron carefully apply a tiny amount of solder to the pin at the break point (easiest if it broke at the base).

4c: Once the solder has "tinned" the broken end of the pin add a tiny bit more solder to it, about the size of a small metal pin head.

4d: Now with the CPU sitting on a flat surface, carefully align the pin in it's correct position using the mechanical pencil to hold it there.

4e: Use the soldering iron to heat the pencil tip until the solder reflows (melts). It is best to use a metal mechanical pencil for this as a plastic one may melt and make a mess of things. Be very careful not to allow the solder to touch the pencil tip, there should be about a millimeter of bare pin exposed or you will not be able to pull the pencil off the pin later. 

4f: Hold the pencil dead still as the solder hardens and refixes the pin in place for about 2 - 3 mins to be absolutely sure it took then pull the pencil off the pin.

Step 5:

Test the repaired CPU!


The soldering part can be very tricky (but not impossible) and may require multiple tries to achieve success but if you are desperate enough to attempt it to begin with then in all likelihood the effort will be worth it Thumbs Up 

I have used these tricks myself in the past and they are surprisingly effective so I felt I should share them here for all those in despair over bent pins on their AMD CPUs.



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote captainsodas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Oct 2016 at 3:30am
Good tip!

I spent close to two hours a few weeks ago on an X2 4800 with a dozen or so bent pins.  Luckily none of them were broken.  I used the screwdriver from a lens repair kit, a thin kitchen knife (to adjust several pins at a time) an LED flashlight, and the last vestiges of faith I had left in humanity. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Galane Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jan 2017 at 1:49pm
I use a syringe needle with the tip clipped off, but not mashed. Find one the right size to just slide between the rows of pins then lift it up and out.
You'll be able to feel which rows have slightly bent pins because they'll resist lifting the needle out. Sometimes just this 'combing' process will straighten a pin enough to get it into the socket.
Look sideways through the field of pins and you should be able to spot one leaning out of line.
The needle can also be used to gently straighten pins. Use one that just slips over the pin. With the wide range of needle gauges you can find one that works better than a mechanical pencil - which are commonly only as small as 0.5mm. That's larger than pins on any CPU newer than a Socket 7.

I hit on the idea of a syringe needle after breaking a pin off a CPU years ago, trying to straighten one with a jeweler's screwdriver. It wouldn't move, wouldn't move - SNAP! Been needling CPU pins for more than a decade now. :) Wouldn't think of trying anything else on the nearly hair thin pins newer CPUs have.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Xaltar Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jan 2017 at 3:05pm
Great idea, hypodermic needles do come in a much wider array of sizes Thumbs Up 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mgrandy@hotmail.co.u Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Mar 2017 at 11:54am
i personally picked up my fx 9370 for £40 off a friend who had bent the pins just my luck ;P

never tried the soldering pins on yet although could work

my method is:- if they are bent over so far there touching. ill use tweezers then credit card to fine adjust the line of pins but god dont push too hard. if there only slightly out of line come instal time just the credit card to neaten them up.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 404CN Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 May 2017 at 12:50am
???接买新??img src="smileys/smiley2.gif" border="0" alt="?眼" align="absmiddle">
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote yue0707 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jul 2017 at 3:02am

I usually just use a blade from a Exacto knife or Box Cutter and use it with another blade and apply pressure on a lane of pins from both sides until they are straight. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cyatic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Nov 2017 at 11:40am
I found using a mechanical pencil is the easiest way. Empty the pencil lead, stick the bent pin into the pencil tip, straighten it out.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote zlobster Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Dec 2017 at 6:16am
Here is another guide: http://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/hardware-canucks-reviews/76032-fixing-bent-pins-amds-ryzen-pga-cpus.html

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AtomicNixon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 Mar 2018 at 2:48pm
It's possible to mount a chip with broken pins.  Just get the right gauge of copper wire that will fit snugly into the holes in the socket.  Make sure you sand off the coating on the wire.  clip the tip off, then insert all the way in and clip off just above the top.  Fingernail clippers are perfect.  Now just mount firmly and get some pressure on it with your heat-sink.  If it doesn't work, try try again because you've got nothing to lose.  I've done a few this way and my friends' machine which had five missing pins is running fine, two years later.

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