Lenovo ThinkPad T400 R400 42X4861 Scharniere Left and why eBay is a POS (WHL #66)

Two weeks of repairs and tidying up the place – not much time for new content. Let’s use something canned instead – from a repair, of course.

My Thinkpad T400, which is still on the to-be-replaced list but no T25 Anniversary Edition or similar Frankenpad has showed up so far, recently experienced the second broken hinge. It was replaced like four to five years ago with a used part from the TP forum, when I thought it would be replaced entirely by the time this part would fail again. Well, it’s still in use as my main machine. […]


Quick Release Plate Camera Tripod 1.5×2″ Mount For Manfrotto 200PL-14 484RC2 (and modification for the Sony RX100M2) (WHL #65)

A ripoff product and some modifications to it this time.

In January I bought a used tripod set consisting of a Manfrotto 190 XPROB, a massively oversized 327 RC2 Joystick and a 200PL quick release plate (100 bucks plus delivery). While all of these are well made to a degree that I would totally buy them again, I wasn’t 100% satisfied with the quick release plate in combination with my Sony RX100M2 camera. Not sure if there are standards for camera mounts alignment and envelopes (so: “who to blame”), but the Sony does not align the UNC 20 1/4″ mounting thread with the optical axis, it touches the mounting plane with the focusing ring and even undercuts it with when swivelling the display. […]


Sensirion SGP30 and Bosch BME280 air sensors (WHL #64)

Small air sensor modules for today!

The Bosch BME280 has been in use on my ESP modules across the apartment since I discarded the unreliable DHT sensors, DHT22 in my case. It’s a combined temperature-pressure-humidity sensor, contrary to the much cheaper BMP280 or the predecessor BMP180, which lack the humidity part (pretty much vital indoors, while pressure is just a gimmick). They are sold in many similar versions, I’ve always picked the GY-BME280 module in 3.3V flavour (“GYBMEP”), as the sensor can be operated from 1.71V to 3.6V which is handy for different MCUs. […]


Convenient IBM x3650 server PSU power distribution board (#P35)

On the occasion of selling the second PSU from the long dismantled IBM x3650M1 machine (part of the stack shown in #P23), a direct result of eBay getting greedy and increasing their commission from 10% of the item price to 11% including postage (WTF?) plus 35 cents per item, I need to publish this real quick. I still do have access to powerful 12V supplies that can operate my lightbox setup to take photos of the things are usually operating the lightbox, but it would be pretty inconvenient to do so ;)

So here’s another piece of Open Hardware – a custom PSU board for said IBM power supply. […]


Random thoughts on Supermicro Risers, LSI LBAs, power supplies, ZFS and other fun server things (#P34)

With the failed 450W SFX power supply separated into a regular post last week, now’s the time to waffle on about what happened besides that.

Well, Solaris 11.4 (evil developer/home use licensing, so no current service packs) still uses minimal ashift as default instead of a fixed value of 12. ashift is the exponent of the power of 2 that is used as smallest assignable portion of data, so basically sector size. “Old” default is 9, as 2^9 is the well known 512 byte sector size that most old hard disks had as both logical and physical size, and which they reported as such. […]


Fractal Design Integra series 450W SFX power supply oopsie (WHL #63)

Someone missed posting two weeks ago and didn’t make up for it yet. That guy was me and here’s a two-part random collection on why that happened, what fun things I spent time with instead, and why hacking hardware sometimes sucks (a little). I’ll classify this one as regular post due to the power supply teardown, and the other one as a project, should be up by next Sunday.

Well, when I started gathering photos a fortnight ago to make a new post, my ZFS upgrade project (more on that in a minute) was finally going smoothly after a rocky start when creating the new zpool. […]


Supermicro X9SRW-F Ivy Bridge EP compatibility comparison (#P33)

Some canned content for today – back when making the Supermicro 2011 board fit my needs (#P23,#P24), I stumbled upon the Ivy Bridge thing. Technically, the two rack servers that I got should both be compatible with the E5-2600 series (Sandy Bridge EP), as well as E5-2600v2 series (Ivy Bridge EP). The product website states that “BIOS version 3.0 or above is required” for this to work, and both boards run the most recent version (not that there’s so many versions to choose from). Both had a E5-2630L installed, so SB-EP. […]


3 Speeds Electric Rotating Display Stand Mirror 360 Degree Turntable Jewelry Holder Battery for Photography Video Shooting Props (WHL #62)

We haven’t had a stock product presentation for a while, so why not start 2021 with something new from China… [bitter 2020 stares from the crowd]

Well, for the PCB Tree I figured a 360° view would be nice. I know it does have some ugly holes, but every naturally grown tree has these. Why not get something that not only offers a spinning platter for stop-motion tricks, but instead rotates something on display on its own?

Bought on AliExpress on 12th of December, 8.73€ including shipping, delivered on January 8th – that was a quick one! […]


The PCB (Christmas) Tree (#P32)

Epiphany has already passed and St. Knut’s day is next Wednesday, it’s about time to stop being lazy and get the Christmas tree out of the living room.
Well, yes, but not the usual way. As shown previously, it’s not an ordinary tree. It’s green and it has fancy little lights all around, but it’s also containing significant amounts of lead and it needs a PoE port to operate.

Meet the PCB Tree.

Made from scrap circuit boards, random bits of wire, leaded solder and a couple of Chinese ingredients, it’s a wonderful Christmas abomination that sat the entire last year in my office and received a significant addition in early December 2020. […]


3D printed switch repair parts (#P31F1)

Some more details on the Bosch oven repair. These are the replacement parts that I ordered from Sculpteo, which, according to its own website, is the market leader in online ordered printed parts. Sculpteo also happened to be bought by BASF this spring, and they’re mainly printing in France but offer support in German (with offices in Germany, I think). They offer laser cutting as well but charge additional shipping cost for those, which made me skip parts of my order…

The part in question was already featured in WHL #61 (crappy automated model generation) after which I recreated it by hand. […]