I screwed up my new MacBook Pro!!!

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by IceMacMac, Mar 15, 2011.

  1. IceMacMac, Mar 15, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2011

    IceMacMac macrumors 6502

    Jun 6, 2010

    Got my new MPPro early today...several days ahead of schedule. I wiped the drive, installed a fresh and lighter system and set of apps.

    That completed, I kept the corner of my eye on a firewire based migration from the my old laptop. Success there, and I start to get complacent.

    Here's where things go south. As I went to install the very affordably priced 8 GIG updgrade from OWC...I did two foolish things. I worked in a hurried fashion and I seriously underestimated how much focus was needed to attend to Apple's miniscule screws that secure the back of the unit. (I have 49 year old eyes)

    The RAM installation went fine, but I in the process I lost one of the screws and a couple of the other screws don't seem to have a flush fit. It appears there was more to attend to than I realized.

    So tomorrow I'll have to do some research about what went wrong...and try to find out where I can snag one of those little bugger screws.

    Learn from my mistakes: Don't hurry, be ULTRA careful with those little screws....or you'll be me: A mac owner with a screw loose.:(
  2. YsoSerious macrumors 6502


    Oct 8, 2008
    I think you can order replacement screws from ifixit.com. There are 3 long screws facing the back end of the MBP. The rest are smaller.
  3. AlBDamned macrumors 68030


    Mar 14, 2005
    You have to be super careful when doing this and use magnetic tools because the screws are tiny.

    With regards to your flush fit, try resetting it, don't tighten anything fully until all screws are in place and threading, then tighten up in sequence.
  4. jlc1978 macrumors 68020


    Aug 14, 2009
    In addition, I suggest after getting a nice flush fit you tighten in a cross pattern - lower left, upper right, lower right, upper left, and repeat until all screws are tight. the first time through don't completely tighten them - just enough to set the bottom plate, then go through and tighten them all in the same pattern. This helps keep an even load on the plate as you tighten it and lessen the chance of it coming up on one side.

    You can also get some blue loctite to keep the long screws set. I'd ask a genius if he or she can give you a screw to replace the lost one.
  5. Cyberheart macrumors member


    Mar 14, 2011
    If you dont have the fire then dont play with the devil especially with an expensive laptop.
  6. calderone macrumors 68040


    Aug 28, 2009
    I have found that you have to put the screws in the same position, despite the fact they are the same size. I think the manufacturing process (the screws specially) is very imprecise.
  7. IceMacMac thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 6, 2010
    Prudent advice. I knew better than to be so flippant.

    I do have all the screws flush now. It obviously is not a big deal...one screw missing...but when you have a brand new Mac you want everything perfect. And I won't be able to rest until I find the damn thing on the kitchen floor or replace it. I'll be sick at paying for a package of screws and shipping.

    I agree. By moving them around I finally got them all well-seated
  8. Peter Maurer macrumors member

    Oct 9, 2008
    If you have an Apple Store in your vicinity, drop by there and ask them nicely if they can help. Pretty much the same thing happened to a friend of mine, and the local Apple Store helped him out without charging for it.

    (It's probably a good idea to ask an open question about where/how to acquire spare screws for MacBook Pros, rather than squarely demanding a freebie.)


    PS: I love this thread's double entendre title. :D
  9. Buck987 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 16, 2010

    Wow..how profound.
  10. OneMike macrumors 603


    Oct 19, 2005
    I could tell this was a possible issue when installing my SSD.

    Best advise is use very little force when tightening the screws. Even if not flush you may be able loosen and realign.
  11. Lumpydog macrumors 6502

    Aug 3, 2007
    This is excellent advice - I second. These guys will know how to re-seat the screws too.
  12. NikFinn macrumors 6502a


    Jun 22, 2009
    I wouldn't call screws fire, or the devil a MBP. Just make sure you don't cross thread the screws. If you're missing one it's not a big deal.
  13. IceMacMac thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 6, 2010
    None of this is a huge deal.

    But I want to keep my new machine pristine in every way. I don't quite understand the notion of installing RAM as dancing with devil, LOL. I posted mainly just to share my lapse of vigilance and to warn others: those tiny screws need your attention.
  14. Miss Terri macrumors 6502

    Nov 11, 2010
    US East Coast
    I can totally understand your post. Even though I'm always very careful with my computers, when one is *brand new* it's like handling delicate crystals and the idea of wrecking anything unbearable! (Well, for me anyway.)

    One idea for others reading who may be about to remove the back cover: I find that sometimes on things like these, it's useful to get the exact same screws back in their original holes -- even if some are "the same length." Just seems like there can be tiny variations.

    What I did to solve both that and the disappearing screw issue was to take a piece of paper and make draw ten circles on it in the positions they have on the laptop (marking hinge direction also). Then I used the #00 screwdriver to make a tiny hole in the center of each of the circles. As I removed each screw I "punched" it into its corresponding hole in the paper, where it stuck by friction. I put the paper on a tray for good measure.

    As others mentioned, it also helps to get all the screws started, then tighten them most of the way in a random pattern, then go around once more and tighten them all the way (still not cranking on them).

    I removed the back cover on my 2010 MBP a couple of weeks ago for the first time; there was a bit of blue on each screw -- looked something like Loctite.

  15. nygfan80 macrumors regular

    Apr 13, 2010
    I never lost any screws but when I installed the data doubler and took it out, I believe I put some torx screws where the phillips go and did the same thing where the torx go. Will Apple notice I did this? Is there any type of diagram where I can put them exactly where they are supposed to go? I am worried if I have to send it into service, I might void that warranty.
  16. Miss Terri macrumors 6502

    Nov 11, 2010
    US East Coast
    I know that on the 2010 13", all of the bottom cover screws are phillips #00, and supposedly (I have not checked them) the hard drive screws are Torx. I wouldn't be surprised if it's the same way on your computer.
  17. IceMacMac thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 6, 2010
    I doubt signs of opening the back cover would void any warranty. Apple to my knowledge doesn't frown at DIY RAM upgrades.

    Signs of working deeper into the innards, of course, might be another matter.

    But just my opinion.

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