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PowerBook 3400c Selector

nollimac

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 10, 2013
297
18
My first laptop, the PowerBook 3400c, is in awesome shape and even has an Orinoco wireless except I am missing the back accessory cover and the selector button doesn't work. I use the tap feature of the trackpad; however, I would like to restore the selector to make the machine collectable. How to fix?

 
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bunnspecial

macrumors 604
May 3, 2014
7,377
4,506
Kentucky
By selector, do you mean the trackpad button?

If so, it's actually-from what I understand-it's not super uncommon. I know mine didn't work when I first got it. There is a microswitch attached to the bottom of the button, and it pushes against a piece of plastic to "click." On mine, this piece had broken off-I rebuilt it with superglue and the button now works.

One of the best things you can do is pull off that part of the case and just see what's going on. If you take the keyboard off(take out the three screws on the bottom and you can then lift up the keyboard), you should be able to pop off the trackpad and palmrests as one unit. This is attached to the board by a single ribbon cable, and removing that will allow you to examine it.

As for the accessory door-I have two of these computers(one working, one for parts) along with a Kanga. The Kanga is basically the same computer but with a G3 processor(in fact it's sometimes called the 3500). None of them have the accessory door.
 
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MikeatOSX

macrumors regular
Mar 26, 2007
157
25
Austria
Back covers of PB 5300 or PB 190 can also be used, but I don't believe you can buy NOS covers after 20 years have gone.
 
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nollimac

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 10, 2013
297
18
By selector, do you mean the trackpad button?

If so, it's actually-from what I understand-it's not super uncommon. I know mine didn't work when I first got it. There is a microswitch attached to the bottom of the button, and it pushes against a piece of plastic to "click." On mine, this piece had broken off-I rebuilt it with superglue and the button now works.

One of the best things you can do is pull off that part of the case and just see what's going on. If you take the keyboard off(take out the three screws on the bottom and you can then lift up the keyboard), you should be able to pop off the trackpad and palmrests as one unit. This is attached to the board by a single ribbon cable, and removing that will allow you to examine it.

As for the accessory door-I have two of these computers(one working, one for parts) along with a Kanga. The Kanga is basically the same computer but with a G3 processor(in fact it's sometimes called the 3500). None of them have the accessory door.

Thank you Bunnspecial for responding...yes that correct (trackpad button)...couldn't figured out its proper name while composing post. I was thinking that a solenoid switch was at play and wanted to get feedback before entering the device. I had checked EBay on the cover...nothing; however, I could live with out it.
 
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bunnspecial

macrumors 604
May 3, 2014
7,377
4,506
Kentucky
Before buying the part, look at what's going on with the one you have now. It may be an easy repair. I used superglue and then followed up by "welding" it with a soldering iron.

I've also seen at least one picture on the internet of someone who made a replacement out of aluminum.
 
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nollimac

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 10, 2013
297
18
Back covers of PB 5300 or PB 190 can also be used, but I don't believe you can buy NOS covers after 20 years have gone.

MikeatOSX, I really wasn't expecting to find a new cover and could live without the cover...it's just that the laptop is such a cool design having the cover would enhance its collectibility.
 
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bunnspecial

macrumors 604
May 3, 2014
7,377
4,506
Kentucky
BTW, here's a photo of mine before repair. Notice the broken piece of plastic lying NEXT to the microswitch.

IMG_2753.jpg
 
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