Recycled Computing

Taking Apart a Tray-Loading iMac

- 2008.09.29

You've always wanted to look inside the first iMac, right? I mean,this was the first computer to come out that was designed after the allglorious, all powerful Steve Jobs returned to Apple.

the original Bondi blue iMacThe Bondi blue iMac launched the small "i" revolution, and weall know what that led to.

At any rate, we're tossing out our Revision A iMacs at school -about 10 of them - because of they don't have FireWire. That means thatrestoring a hard drive is not as easy as it in on a Mac withFireWire.

They also lack the power that we need to run Tiger. Face it, they'reold and tired.

But waste not, want not - so I'm strippin' and rippin' the Rev. AiMacs to mine them for useful stuff. (The Rev. B through D iMacs areput together the same way.)

The first thing you do after you pulled the power cord and any othercables (remember, safety first!) is to turn the Rev. A upside down.Then you unscrew this single screw on the back under the smallhandle.

removing the first screw

Now, take that handle and pull the plastic shroud off. It's not thateasy. You may have to run a small straight blade screw driver aroundthe seam.

It will come off; it just requires some time.

shaking it loose

Now you're going to have to remove the two screws that lurk underthe handle of the (for lack of a better word) sled that has all theelectronic goodies on it.

more screws to remove

Don't get crazy. There are a whole bunch of cables that you aregoing to need to remove before you can remove the sled.

cables to disconnect

All four of these cables need to be detached to remove the "guts "of the Rev. A.

cables disconnected

Now you can grab the handle and pull out the sled with all theguts.

pulling out the guts

Now you have the good stuff to look over. It's all here: the harddrive, the CD-ROM drive, the system, and the RAM chips- all in oneweird looking package.

the insides of the iMac

The memory is easy to snap out. You are going to have to remove ametal cage to get at one of the memory cards.

removing the RAM

There are two screws on either side of the housing that hold theCD-ROM drive. These screws also hold the hard drive in. Remove thescrews.

removing the CD-ROM

Now push the CD drive back about a half an inch and then pull it upand out. You need to push the hard drive back as well, to free up thedrive. Make sure the that the two tabs on the hard drive sled willclear the housing.

there are two of these

The hard drive and sled can now come out.

hard drive removal

You need to take out the hard drive and pile it with the otherspoils.

the spoils

I'm not saying that the iMac - the computer that started up thesecond Mac revolution - needs to be stripped and thrown out. The Rev. Acan be networked, and you can upgrade the hard drive and memory. Ithink that OS 9.2 might be the operating system to go with, but thereare folks who do run OS X on the old girl. It might be a goodemail machine for those who need a minimum computer platform.

Either way, it's an easy computer to take apart.[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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