Repairing this ribbon

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by drewhall, Dec 19, 2010.

  1. drewhall

    Thread Starter New Member

    Dec 19, 2010
    2
    0
    Hi everyone, I am new to the group.
    I would like to repair this ribbon cable that is from a kitchenaid appliance.
    The ribbon cable is connected to a switch-membrane control pad. The ribbon has been pinched and a crack has developed (see picture) and now the membrane can no longer communicate with the controller.
    Can this type of ribbon be repaired as it appears you cannot detach it from the membrane?

    The replacement cost of the switch-membrane pad is >$400, would like to avoid this.
     
  2. debe

    Well-Known Member

    Sep 21, 2010
    946
    184
    Yes I have repaired a simmilar ribon cable. Used short pieces of thin fuse wire & VERY carefully bridged the breaks with a small tiped soldering iron. Need steady hands & not too mutch heat (you need to be fairly competent @ soldering)
     
  3. thatoneguy

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
    6,357
    718
    Solder if you can, strip/glue if you find you can't solder it, then use the glue. Last resort is a "Circuit Writer" pen, but the resistance of the tracks made by those is pretty high unless you pile up several layers. The tip may also be a bit too broad for the apparent width of the wires shown.

    What you might want to do is get some small gauge wire (26-30 gauge), and conductive glue.

    For the Glue, do not use the graphite based, use the silver based epoxy. Silver is a bit/lot more expensive, but the resistance is orders of magnitude better, 1/2Ω vs 20Ω or more.
     
  4. Kermit2

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 5, 2010
    3,780
    934
    that can be repaired with some crafty soldering work. Surely you can find a friend who knows someone that can wield an iron?

    Definitely not a beginners type job though
     
  5. drewhall

    Thread Starter New Member

    Dec 19, 2010
    2
    0
    So far I have not had any luck.
    I decided to use a Silver Circuit Pen to "draw connections" between the cracked lines.
    I am having difficulty scrapping the plastic surface away to get to the conductor. The conductor seems to be very sensitive to being scrapped off as well.
    Any advice on how to remove the coating without going too deep and removing the conductor?
    Thanks, D
     
  6. debe

    Well-Known Member

    Sep 21, 2010
    946
    184
    Since theres only 15 conections I would try running thin wire jumpers to each conector after removing the ribbon. They only use the ribbon conector for easy & quick manufacture.
     
  7. windoze killa

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 23, 2006
    605
    24
    This is actually a quite simple task. You just have to be careful. You can try using acetone on a cottn bud to remover the coating. Also a coarse eraser. With both of these methods be VERY careful, the acetone may disolve the plastic as well and the eraser may damage the track if you are too rough.

    As I have said in many previous posts the main thing to do is use flux. Lots of it. The soldering part almost does itself if it has been prepared properly. Caution--- Try to use a soldering iron below 30W. Anything bigger will probably melt the plastic.
     
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