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Thread: Pink Laptop

  1. #1

    Pink Laptop

    I like to share with people that I modify and build computers as it often opens doors for me. A door was recently opened to a girl with a laptop that wanted said laptop pink. I figured that it would be good experience and a good thing to have in my portfolio to show sponsors or employers or whoever was interested. I probably should have told her that any and all warranties would be voided by my doing this, but I didn't, so there it is. On to the worklog!


    The tools and the paint.

    The laptop. It's a pentium 3 with a 5 gig drive and ??? ram (didn't check), so while I'm being careful, 50 bucks can replace it. I'm debating whether to do the top and bottom sections two different colors. I'll use my purple metalcast purple on the metal.

    The battery and floppy come out.

    I can take the floppy out of that plastic, so that's what I'm doing.

    The bottom:

    When I first accepted the job I wasn't planning on taking the thing apart. Instead I would just mask off. Then I saw this:

    I was like, holy crap that's impossible! Especially since I didn't currently have any blue tape, just some 5-year-old tan stuff that had lost its adhesiveness. Yes, I could have gone to the store or taken some from my dad, but that didn't happen.

    I especially didn't want to have to mask this off, so I removed it.


    Naturally I didn't want to spray the keyboard, so I figured that it would be easier to remove that than to mask it. You can also see that I removed the trim on the monitor for easier painting, as well as the wrist pads.

    Here is the monitor, inside top, and bottom portion in separate pieces.

    I continued to see things that would be easier to paint if they were not attached to the computer until I was left with a pile of parts. Let's skip the disassemblage and go straight to the pile-o-parts stage.

    The motherboard:

    More piles:

    After I had it mostly disassembled I took the monitor out of its casing:

    Interestingly enough, behind the monitor there is what appears to be tinfoil.

    The bracket further removed

    The latch coming out

    I took out the touch-screen after I tried to mask it. I nicked it a little in the corner, I hope that it's okay. :x

    And thus the laptop is in a pile of parts and I barely have to mask off anything.


    This isn't a very long phase, and it mostly consists of getting rid of stickers. Here's the back panel before solvent:

    I took an after pic, but photobucket is being dumb and won't let me upload it. I'll let it suffice to say that it looks like there were never stickers

    Originally I was going to paint the wrist pads, but my father pointed out the tremendous amount of wear that they sustain could lead to chipping, which equals death in the eyes of its future user.I'm not sanding this as I'm using a satin-finish paint and I figured that it would be pointless and difficult. After removing blemishes and stickers I washed everything to get rid of fingerprints/oils. Tomorrow I tack and paint!

  2. #2
    Master Modder
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Pink Laptop

    I agree with your father on the wrist pads, I wouldn't paint them either. Good luck and keep us posted. Happy Modding to ya.

  3. #3

    Pink Laptop

    I painted today. Not too much explanation to do.

    Masked off and tacked.

    I forgot to take a shot of it primed, but it happened (3 coats and sanded with 600 grit)

    Here's after 2 coats of pink:

    I put on clear tomorrow. Darkness and youth group closed in on me so I didn't have time to test out the clears that I have. Tomorrow I'll paint with the metalcast and clear, and then the day after that I'll polish it and reassemble, and by Wednesday the lucky lady will have it in hand!

  4. #4

    Pink Laptop

    Hah, that's right on man. I've never worked with laptops. How difficult is the disassembly and reassembly compared to a regular ATX?

  5. #5

    Pink Laptop

    The difficulty totally depends on the laptop model, but it also hinges a bit on your experience level. This is only my second laptop teardown and it went pretty smoothely, at least compared to my last one. the last one that I took apart was a toshiba, and it was very difficult. It was full of screws hidden behind crap, as well as the motherboard being in two sections. I actually was unable to take it apart all of the way because of the way that it was assembled. I'm sure that my inexperience played a role in this difficulty as well. With this Dell I was pretty pleasantly surprised. The way that I showed it is the way that it happened. Remove all screws that you come across and keep them in a plastic baggie, and gently remove any clipped-in plastic parts, making sure to find out how they come apart. Brute force results in broken laptops . I think that an interesting cooling hack would be to remove the keyboard and put mesh and fans in its place, keeping an extra keyboard with you. Anyway. The two biggest problems are remembering to plug everything in and making sure to not lose a screw down in there, which shorts out the motherboard :x.

  6. #6

    Pink Laptop

    Today was clear-coat day.
    Everything again. Looks about the same.

    BUT, I knew that this project would not be without mishap. While I was doing the clear-coat on the top, an idiot moth flew onto it and got imbedded! 0-0 In removing it I accidentally scraped down to the original plastic :evil:. I sprayed more pink onto the hole to fix it, and I got a run :x.

    I waited until the clear had dried, then I took another go at the whole panel with pink. Tomorrow I'll sand down the lump, do the silver parts in metalcast, and reapply clear. The rest of the parts are done being painted; I can start waxing them.

  7. #7

    Pink Laptop

    %&$#@ bugs!!!!! You should see me out in the yard when I'm painting. I don't care if it's a leaf, some dust particle or those blasted bugs, I'm swatting like my life depends on it, lol.

  8. #8

    Pink Laptop

    I really need to stop painting in grass and find a parking lot somewhere.

  9. #9

    Pink Laptop

    Yesterday I put the final clear on the top panel. I made the mistake of reading the bottle after I sprayed, and to my horror I saw that I needed to spray in 70 degrees farenheight! At 7 at night in Seattle in October, that never happens. I ran to the basement, grabbed a space heater, and rigged it up above the panel.

    After the second coat I realized that I have a large chanber that is perpetually heated to 70 degrees - my house.

    While that was drying, I applied wax to the other finished pieces. Not much to see, it didn't even glaze too noticably when I was done.


    I got it all together without too much trouble. I had to backtrack twice, once because I didn't have enough of the right screws, and the second time because I didn't get the mouse buttons on right and it wouldn't click. Always check your work before giving it to the customer!

    When I first saw this, even without the screen, I was like DAMN!!! That is HOTT!!!! I mean seriously! I might actually date this computer. Wow. This is why I do this. It's all about the rush of seeing something beautiful and, more importantly, knowing that I made it. I can't wait to give this computer to her tomorrow. I don't care that I'm only getting $25 for this job, I just want to see the look on her face. She's also one of the most popular girls on campus, So I know that I'm going to see business because of this, even if it is pro-bono.

  10. #10
    Master Modder
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Pink Laptop

    It sure does look good. You did a good job, so give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done. Happy Modding to ya.

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