I repair my camera flash

I was heartbroken when my flash unit failed a few weeks ago. Especially because the repair center wanted nearly as much money to fix it as it originally cost. Repair or replace? It’s a tough call.

I repair my SB 600 flash unit

I spent 10 years or so of my career as an electronics tech, so I decided to try to fix it myself. The trouble is that everything electronic is so tiny now that it probably does make more sense to dispose of it than to attempt a repair.
I repair my SB 600 flash unit

Getting it apart was like a Chinese puzzle. Which makes sense, since most of this gadgetry is made in China. All this stuff is designed on computers, and mostly built by robots. They manage to design it with very few screws or fasteners, which makes the assembly very integrated. Everything has to go in precise order. It’s very meticulous.
I repair my SB 600 flash unit

So, an inductor has failed. You can’t really replace the semiconductor, unless you were a nano-robot soldering machine. I ordered whole new logic board for $64, and crossed my fingers. And eyes.
I repair my SB 600 flash unit
Then the trick is getting it back together in the right order. No small feat.
I repair my SB 600 flash unit
Success! That was a good feeling. I was really hoping not to just throw it away and buy another. Waste not, want not.
I repair my SB 600 flash unit
I guess it’s because I’m 55 years old and have accumulated a few skills over the years; that plus I’m stubborn and frugal. My gamble paid off for this item, but I’m probably a relic from bygone days of Heathkit television “sets” and computer kits. I can’t imagine younger people looking at a broken cell phone, or failed flat panel TV, and saying to themselves. “hey, maybe I can fix that myself.” Which is kind of a shame, since it likely means more disposal of e-waste. End of an era really. DIY, it’s Really Redding.

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