iPhone SE Nearly destroyed iPhone SE project

ThunderMasterMind

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 29, 2016
543
520
This is a topic for the challenge of making this nearly destroyed iPhone SE a fully functional phone again, for a small cost too.
This was my neighbor's phone which was severely damaged after a hit when the phone was in his pocket. The phone was extremely bent, but after bending it back, it seemed to be ok. The guy showed me the phone in class and said he was selling it for $2 since it was supposedly broken beyond repair. I figured that it worked perfectly fine, so I offered to take it after he showed me. I didn't have $2, but I did have a standard wall charger adaptor he wanted so I just traded with him since I have plenty of chargers. I plugged it into my computer to see if it functioned and it did, the computer recognized it easily. I got home, grabbed some tools, a broken yet functional display and replaced the demolished display with a functional one and booted it up. Now I have a poor condition functional iPhone SE for next to nothing and any issues it has, will be easy to fix and fun to fix since I love repairing small devices.

iPhone SE
Space grey
16GB
AT&T


When I got it:

IMG_3467.JPG
IMG_3468.JPG
IMG_3469.JPG
IMG_3470.JPG


When I put a functional display on it:

IMG_3472.JPG
IMG_3473.JPG
IMG_3476.JPG
 
Last edited:

QueenTyrone

macrumors 6502a
Sep 21, 2016
701
627
You can buy a new logic board + matching touch Id sensor and a new screen for about 250. Seems like it's just blown from whatever damage it had taken, my guess is that you will need to do a gut job on the se, try to straighten out the chasis and then go in and replace parts to sync with iTunes. Please tell me you got this thing for free
 

ThunderMasterMind

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 29, 2016
543
520
You can buy a new logic board + matching touch Id sensor and a new screen for about 250. Seems like it's just blown from whatever damage it had taken, my guess is that you will need to do a gut job on the se, try to straighten out the chasis and then go in and replace parts to sync with iTunes. Please tell me you got this thing for free
Basically I did kinda it for free. I traded a cube wall charger adaptor for it. Which you can get just about anywhere these days.

The original TouchID sensor looks fine and should work perfectly, but I think there is some bad connections somewhere, probably ripped ribbon cables that aren't working anymore. It's almost fully functional. Cameras, microphones, speakers, vibration motor, buttons, wifi, Bluetooth, all that works. I don't know so much about the cellular radio/antenna.
 

ThunderMasterMind

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 29, 2016
543
520
Why would you bother?
You will waste more money and time buying replacement parts than a brand new SE.
There was some deals for $100-180 for 16GB SE phones recently.
I just wanted somthing to tinker with. If I gut it and check everything seeing if everything is functional, then All I really need is a $30 broken SE from eBay and I can make this phone nearly perfect using the frame and display from the broken eBay buy.

Also I just got setup to start, this may be disregarded.
 

ThunderMasterMind

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 29, 2016
543
520
$30 broken SE with all the functional parts you need?
I dont know, sounds like you will be tinkering with it for a while :D
No, that's not what I meant. The model I have is nearly fully functional, so all I need is a frame and a display for it. When I get home today, I'm going to strip it down a little further to see what the deal is with the home button, and see what else may be fragile or faulty. If anything, this just becomes a parts unit if I need the parts for future things. Being since I got this thing for nearly nothing, if it falls through, who cares. I'm not dumb, if there's more damage to the phone I didn't see initially, then I won't buy a frame and just forget about it.
 
Last edited:

QueenTyrone

macrumors 6502a
Sep 21, 2016
701
627
Basically I did kinda it for free. I traded a cube wall charger adaptor for it. Which you can get just about anywhere these days.

The original TouchID sensor looks fine and should work perfectly, but I think there is some bad connections somewhere, probably ripped ribbon cables that aren't working anymore. It's almost fully functional. Cameras, microphones, speakers, vibration motor, buttons, wifi, Bluetooth, all that works. I don't know so much about the cellular radio/antenna.
Have you taken it apart yet and inspected everything? Sounds like a fun project Imo. You could try to have apple take a look at it and tell you what all needs to be replaced.
 

Indian Devil

macrumors regular
Mar 3, 2014
121
37
Why would you bother?
You will waste more money and time buying replacement parts than a brand new SE.
There was some deals for $100-180 for 16GB SE phones recently.
Those must be locked with some carrier?


If not I am interested, I will jump on iPhone SE at around $200.
 
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maxjohnson2

macrumors 6502
Mar 24, 2017
335
211
Those must be locked with some carrier?


If not I am interested, I will jump on iPhone SE at around $200.
Boost Mobile (and Virgin Mobile) been selling new iPhone SE for very good prices lately, you can buy one then pay for it to be unlocked. Although I heard some people have issues with their credit card being rejected and getting to work on Sprint, since Sprint will put an unpaid bill status on it if you don't use it on Boost first. I have one and it work fine with AT&T and T-Mo after unlock.
 
Last edited:

ThunderMasterMind

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 29, 2016
543
520
I finally gutted the SE and took a look at what is broken or not. What I found is that the cellular radio/antenna is broken, the TouchID connector is broken along with the half working charging port, and to add to the list, the battery which tore when I pulled the adhesive tabs out from behind it. It started leaking something I could smell, so I disposed of it. Everything else on this phone is operational, so I don't need much of anything for it. I can pick up a faulty/locked unit off of eBay for a quick buck and get pretty much all I need to make this a nice functional phone.
It may seem ridiculous, but it's a fun project that really won't cost much of anything. I have plenty of time to tinker with it too.

Here is an easy to read list of parts:

• Cellular radio and/or antenna
• headphone/lightning ports/Touch ID connector(This is all one piece)
• Battery
• Frame and display
 

G.McGilli

macrumors 6502
Oct 19, 2015
452
272
What did it get hit with in the guys pocket? Someone swing a sledgehammer at him?!?!?

Anyways - I would have bought it too. I love gadgets, broken or not. Fixing's fun!
 
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ThunderMasterMind

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 29, 2016
543
520
What did it get hit with in the guys pocket? Someone swing a sledgehammer at him?!?!?

Anyways - I would have bought it too. I love gadgets, broken or not. Fixing's fun!
I still don't have a full explanation of what happened. He told me that even he doesn't exactly know what happened.
 
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