MBP unibody screws, and a somewhat partially crappy Apple experience

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by polaris20, Nov 4, 2008.

  1. polaris20 macrumors 68020

    Jul 13, 2008
    So I got my MBP, quite pleased with it actually. Yes, it does have the limp screen, but I never use the laptop at more than a 60 degree angle anyway, so that doesn't effect me. Otherwise, great machine!

    So I ordered the base model with 2GB, and had the bigger capacity on order. My vendor only deals with Edge and Kingston, so I got Kingston because it was $100 cheaper. Yes, $100. Edge wants $250 for a 4GB kit.

    Anyway, when I went to unscrew the bottom plate, it was ungodly tight, to the point that I actually damaged the screws a bit getting them out. The kicker here is that once I got everything back together, the Kingston RAM was bad, so I had to do this again. And now when I get more RAM from someone else (this time OWC) I have to remove it again.

    So I figured I'd call AppleCare, and get some new screws. I made it very, very clear I didn't expect a free-bee, and offered my credit card number for the set of 8 screws.

    The first guy, Dave, was very pleasant, and immediately set up a "Genius" appointment for that day. Cool! The Apple tax is worth it for this kind of service, I thought to myself.

    Went to the closest Apple Store, which is 15 miles, but takes 45-50 minutes to get there due to construction and traffic.

    The "Genius" said they have no screws to give or sell, cannot replace them, and haven't in 4 years. I asked where I could get them then, and he said he didn't know. Then he says "You know, your laptop is going to get scratched up a bit. You'll just have to learn to deal with it".

    Huh? WTF?

    I don't give a rat's ass if it gets scratched up. But I do care if the screws get so jacked that I can't get into the bottom. Hence me wanting to spend the $5-$10.

    Sadly even the second guy I talked to at AppleCare couldn't help, even after again making it very clear I was willing to pay for the screws. He did, however, tell me what screws are required, so I could try and find a source for them on my own. Oddly enough, the dimensions are different than what iFixit lists in their MBP disassembly. So I'm not sure even what to look for. Googling either size turned up nothing. iFixit themselves do not have any, though they appear to get screw sets in eventually, once they get used notebooks in stock.

    Ideally this wouldn't be an issue if the screws were not so incredibly tight; I've worked on probably hundreds of laptops by now over the years, and never have any of them been this tight, especially to access a "user-replaceable" part such as RAM.

    Now, AppleCare was very nice, even if they didn't really solve the problem. But the "Genius" was an absolute snotty moron, who not only wasn't helpful, but added "insult to injury".

    Luckily one tool isn't representative of the whole company, but I certainly won't be going back to that particular store again.

    So let me get this straight, Apple fans: thousands of MBP's and MB's all over the world are sold.

    A guy goes to change his RAM, and either A. strips the screws getting them out, or B. drops it on the floor, only to have the screw get lost (come on, it happens).

    You mean to tell me there are ZERO replacement screws available, and you're left with a floppy case bottom? What if a so-called "Genius" does it when fixing a notebook? They have no screws?

    Somehow, I doubt it. ;)
  2. P Mentior macrumors regular

    Sep 20, 2008
    I had a smiler problem. When I went to upgrade my HDD on my early 2008 MBP I lost one of the side case crews. After a lot of searching I found a site that let me buy them and I just check them again and they seem to have some screws for the new model.
    I hope that this helps you out a bit. Just make sure to look at the pictures and find the right screw.

    P Mentior
  3. polaris20 thread starter macrumors 68020

    Jul 13, 2008
    Oh dude....Can I give you a totally platonic man-hug? THIS IS FANTASTIC!!

    I'm pissed at myself because obviously my Google kung-fu pales in comparison to yours! lol

    I'm a happy camper now!!
  4. 840quadra Moderator


    Staff Member

    Feb 1, 2005
    Twin Cities Minnesota
    First off,

    I hope it wasn't you that added tone to the post, but if it is being told truthfully, I have to say, that genius was an Asshat!

    Don't ever accept customer service like that. Ask for a manager, and put that employee on the spot, remind them that poor customer service does not win back loyal customers.

    I had to do something similar when I went in to purchase my MBP on the 15th of October, the day after they were announced. I literally caught an employee in a lie, and I made a point of drawing attention to that, and him.

    With that said, I have had absolutely awesome customer service at Apple Stores , it is sad that one bad apple (employee) can ruin the experience for the company.

  5. sukanas macrumors 6502a


    Nov 15, 2007
    are those screws the same one as the one that screw /mount the HD?
    im talking about the philips one not the torx
  6. polaris20 thread starter macrumors 68020

    Jul 13, 2008
    I know it was just one guy, and I'm certainly not downing Apple as a whole based on the one clown. And unfortunately no, I didn't exaggerate how bad this guy was; that's word for word what was said.

    I am going to call the manager today. I should have asked for one at the time, but I was so absolutely fuming mad, I thought it best to just walk away.

    Don't know dude, but I'll tell you a little later when I've got it opened up for my OWC RAM :D
  7. kolax macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    Out of interest - what size are the screws required?

    That Genius was out of order...smart ass comments like, "it'll get scratched anyway", are just unhelpful and very often cause a simple situation to escalate into an argument. I personally would write to the store complaining. Although, that is a British response as we love complaining - heck we even complain about complaining.
  8. polaris20 thread starter macrumors 68020

    Jul 13, 2008
    They're all in this link, if you want to see all 8 sizes:

    Yeah, you know that feeling where your gut tells you to sucker punch someone in the nose, but your brain says "don't do it, you're an adult, act like one"?

    That's how I felt.
  9. SoybeanStasher macrumors regular

    Oct 27, 2008
    I was going to replace my screws as well since after removing and replacing the RAM 8 or so times (4GB issues) they were getting a little worn. But $60 for the set?! I guess I'll hold out and just be extra careful.

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