iMac a1224 wont boot and smells like a cap gun?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by GelleCC, Apr 5, 2012.

  1. GelleCC, Apr 5, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2012

    GelleCC macrumors regular

    GelleCC

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #1
    EDIT: This has been solved. The only problem was the ram!
    Hi all,

    I tried looking for this issue on the forums and google and I got slightly different suggestions.

    I just bought an iMac that i knew did not boot (mine was stolen a while back so I finally got a new, well, new to me, replacement on the cheap from a friend).

    My friend thought it was a dead motherboard but when I searched the issue, it looked like it could be the motherboard or the power supply (or both?). I think the power supply is definitely involved because when I plugged it in and tried to turn it on (who knows, my friend is a pc, this was his parent's iMac, maybe he just couldn't figure out how to turn it on!), I smelled a cap gun type smell. Those old cap guns which I haven't played with in years, had a very distinct smell - you never forget it. But so does an electrical fire smell, I don't think they smell the same and it definitely didn't smell like an electrical fire smell.

    A note, I bought it to fix myself, because 1) I love fixing things. And 2) because parts are relatively inexpensive.

    Any suggestions? Are there diagnostic LED's like there are on the iMac G5? What do you guys think?

    Thanks in advance!

    -GelleCC
     
  2. GelleCC thread starter macrumors regular

    GelleCC

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #2
    Kind of late, but here are some updates in case anyone has similar problems.

    I never figured out the "cap gun" smell, but my guess would be it had accumulated dust from not being turned on and when I plugged it back in, it, idk, caught on fire lol?

    But I unplugged it immediately upon turning on and smelling that. Started to take it apart to get to the power supply (to which I thought was the culprit) and found lots of dust. Cleaned out the dust and realized that the "RAM gate" was not screwed in all the way. So I unscrewed it and realized the ram wasn't installed all the way (only one 1gb RAM chip was in it). So I threw in a second 1gb ram chip (and reinstalled the first one). put it back together and turned it back on. Everything worked flawlessly (and has been to this day). Some latency when launching some apps but hey, it's an older generation so no complaints here!
     
  3. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #3
    "Cap-gun type smell ... full of dust ... not used recently ... owned by parents ... "

    Any chance that the parents were smokers? That could be the odor when you first turned it on.

    Seating the ram, cleaning it out, etc. may have been all it needed. :)
     
  4. GelleCC thread starter macrumors regular

    GelleCC

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #4
    Nope, my friend and his parents are non-smokers. It wasn't a cigarette type smell, though, it was almost identical to a cap gun (more "electrical" fire smell, almost).

    Honestly, I think it was just the ram. I think had I not sprayed it with compressed air/cleaned the dust, it would have worked as soon as I pushed the ram back in!
     

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