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12" PowerBook restoration help.

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by Obsidian6, Jun 21, 2009.

  1. macrumors 6502a


    So I've acquired an old PowerBook G4 867mhz recently, and it's in need of some love. I've cleaned it as best I could (it was very dirty when it arrived) I've ordered the highest upgrades I could find (1gb ram and a 320gb hdd) I'm going to also need to replace the battery and most likely the power adapter. That being said, the bottom case is in pretty poor condition. The top case and LCD back is also sort of scratched up.

    I'm wondering where the best source would be to acquire the replacement parts. I'd rather not use eBay because I'm unable to use my paypal account.

    Any ideas?
  2. macrumors 604


    You may want to check out ifixit, as they have a store and should have the parts that you need :)
  3. macrumors 68000


    PBs are nice. I guess they would be good note machines for school. But im not thinking id put a 320 hdd in it. Since it will be unsupported in about 3 months. And many many programs already dont work on it. It would be a nice lil mac for say...netbook duty.
  4. macrumors 6502a


    I'm turning it into a little media center for itunes, and a "coffee table" computer, that way when I have guests over, they can surf the net or check email / facebook / myspace, etc. etc. I found a super cheap deal on the ram and the hard drive, so I had already ordered them. I downgraded the OS from leopard to tiger because it runs a lot quicker on that hardware.

    It's not going to see very heavy usage, this is mostly for fun. I just wanted a project to work on.

    I had checked out ifixit.com, and I did find the top case, but I was rather surprised at the cost of the bottom case. It's way more than I expected hehe.

    I'm going to see if I can find a externally clean donor computer for replacement parts.

    About the hard drive though. What did you mean by saying the hard drive wouldn't be supported in a few months? I was under the impression that ANY ATA hard drive would be compatible?
  5. macrumors 6502a


    Well my RAM arrived today and after the install i can already tell the powerbook is running faster for sure!

    I mean. Within reason ;).

    It's come to my attention that the battery is totally shot. It'll hold a charge for about 30 mins and then POOF. dead.

    I'm well aware that OWC and ifixit have replacement batteries available. But I'd rather not spend the $120 right now.

    Can anyone recommend any third party companies that produce replacement batteries that are reliable? I'd like to stay at or under $65

  6. macrumors 68030


    This guy has very good prices. Don't know if he has PB A1079 battery but the one I bought for my (now sold) MBP SR 2.2 was flawless and shipped straight from China (took forever). If he doesn't have it, he may be able to get it.


  7. macrumors 6502a



    Which guy? I don't see a link hehe.
  8. macrumors 68030


  9. macrumors 6502a


    Ok so today my replacement hard drive arrived (the 320GB 5400rpm) Which obviously is WAY bigger than I needed, but I couldn't say no for the price I got.

    Anyways. I did the install myself, and it was pretty intense! Lot's of stuff to take apart. I did have one casualty though. I broke the clip that holds the F2 key in place when trying to put it back on. I'm going to pick up another one from a friend. But everything else worked fine!

    Also, for some unknown reason. My battery is suddenly working again. It lasts for at least a couple hours. I found a replacement yo-yo charger too that was in excellent condition (the one that came with the computer was in pretty poor shape. exposed wires and what-not)

    Overall. It's running a 1000% better than when I got it. Plus it looks better too, I cleaned up as much as I possibly could. (Some areas just wouldn't come clean)

    I'm going to hold off on the casing replacements until I really need to. But I do want to find another battery probably. And there is 1 missing screw in the front display bezel.

    If anything NEEDs to be replaced it's probably the LCD. it has very very uneven lighting, and there is some kind of diagonal black mark across the lower left corner. I may try to snag a used one from a parts computer and swap it out.

    I'm happy overall though. this will make a nice little media notebook. I loaded up 80+gigs of music into iTunes and it's perfectly happy. It's definitely a lot peppier than when I got it.

    I went from:

    PPC G4 867mhz
    640mb RAM
    40GB 4200RPM HDD
    OS X 10.5.7


    PPC G4 867mhz
    1.12GB RAM
    320GB 5400RPM HDD
    OS X 10.4.11

    Ironically the OS downgrade was probably one of the biggest performance boosts.

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