Help me repair a bent pin in a CF slot?
February 20, 2007 7:29 AM   Subscribe

Please help me save my digital camera. Inside the compact flash card slot, I have a bent pin. I can see it, but I can't think of anything small enough, yet rigid enough, that I could get in there that could straighten it out.

I know the trick of using a mechanical pencil sans the lead, but that's far too big to get in there. Is there possibly anything similar that will fit in a CF card slot? The depth of the slot = the length of the card (i.e., it fits in the slot flush to the opening).
posted by stupidsexyFlanders to Computers & Internet (18 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
these pins aren't that stiff....would a chemistry pipette or coffee straw possibly work?
posted by cosmicbandito at 7:35 AM on February 20, 2007

Tip of a small screwdriver.
posted by cillit bang at 7:40 AM on February 20, 2007

tweezers? paperclip?
posted by PowerCat at 7:41 AM on February 20, 2007

cillit bang's got it. You can find said small screwdriver in an eyeglass repair kit.
posted by ourobouros at 7:54 AM on February 20, 2007

Response by poster: OK, I'll try the teensy screwdriver. I was hoping for something hollow yet stiff that I could place over the pin to help align it more precisely, but I'll try the screwdriver for the gross alignment and then maybe a coffee stirrer for the fine stuff? I'll report back tomorrow, as I'm all about leaving an archive for future generations.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 8:07 AM on February 20, 2007

another suggestion - metal nail file
posted by amtho at 8:12 AM on February 20, 2007

Small but hollow? You can buy a big syringe for injecting wallpaper paste behind already-installed wallpaper. The metal needle is a bit large, and very sharp, but might work for your purposes. I think I got mine at the local Sherwin Williams store, or a hardware store. Believe me, you would not want to use this on a human body.

Picture toward the bottom of this page
posted by amtho at 8:17 AM on February 20, 2007

How about using the straw from a WD-40 can?
posted by kc0dxh at 8:20 AM on February 20, 2007

getting the pin into a functional position with a tiny screwdriver will work, then it will align even more once the card is (very gently) reinserted

just go slow until you're sure you've got it lined up properly
posted by Salvatorparadise at 8:29 AM on February 20, 2007

I had precisely this problem, and was able to push the pin back into position using one of the smallest from a set of watchmakers' screwdrivers.
posted by StephenF at 9:00 AM on February 20, 2007

One drunken wedding reception a couple years ago I managed to bend *several* of my pins, apparently trying to put the card in the wrong way.

Anyway ... from experience, I can second the recommendation of the tiny screwdrivers. I just used a flashlight and patiently conducted the pin surgery. The camera has been healthy since.

(I may have also tried a nail file and/or tweezers, but I think it was the tiny screwdriver that fit and worked best.)
posted by iguanapolitico at 9:02 AM on February 20, 2007

Try a mechanical pencil - that will have a hollow tube at the end.
posted by azlondon at 9:14 AM on February 20, 2007

Art supply and hobby stores also carry thin tubes. If you can wait you can also order them from Tower Hobbies.
posted by JulianDay at 9:28 AM on February 20, 2007

How about the metal core (refill) of a pen? It's the skinniest tube I can think of in common occurence. Might still be too thick, I fear.
posted by Goofyy at 10:41 AM on February 20, 2007

How about a hair pin?
posted by raf at 11:03 AM on February 20, 2007

I was going to say mechanical pencil also, but azlondon beat me to it. :)

That's the thinnest hollow thing I could think of. The I.D. would be 0.5 or 0.7mm depending on the type of pencil.
posted by Kadin2048 at 1:05 AM on February 21, 2007

Second the "bend" side of a hair pin as well as the jeweller's screwdrivers. Both work like a charm.
posted by nevercalm at 10:24 AM on February 21, 2007

Take a jumper that fits over two pins (for example to make a hard drive the master or the slave). Hold it with thin-nosed pliers, slip one side of it over the bent pin, and straighten it out.
posted by KRS at 1:34 PM on February 21, 2007

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