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Desoldering the PPU on a famicom

clueless

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snobgamergr
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I ordered a nesrgb board for my original famicom from a uk based reseller (I'm EU based).
While I'm waiting for it to arrive, I'm gathering all the information that is needed in order to have a successful installation.
What bothers me the most, is the desoldering part. I don't have a fancy desoldering gun and/or a temperature controlled soldering station. I don't solder regularly and don't want to buy equipment that will collect dust most of the time.
What I have is a regular soldering iron, a manual desolder pump, braid and flux. Will these be enough to desolder the ppu?
 

darcagn

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darcagn
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I've been faced with the task of desoldering an NES PPU without a desoldering gun twice way back when doing a PC10 NES RGB mod and later the NESRGB mod.

I was successful both times but both times it took well over an hour and I damaged vias on the PCB and had trace damage I had to repair. This was when I was much more of an amateur with a soldering iron, but still.

After the second time I bought a Hakko 808 desoldering gun and can do the same task in literally under 5 mins tops with no damage. It mostly collects dust, as you say, but maybe once every 18 months I take it out and use it for something and I'm so glad that I have it regardless.
 

kartng

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My own famicom modding experience was far less invasive: I just did a composite video mod. So take this with a grain of salt, but I personally would not attempt this with equipment you have to hand. I tried to desolder the video transistor from the board with similar kit ( I do have a temperature controlled station, however) and was unsuccessful. Throwing flux at the joints did little to get wick to take up that 35 year old solder - it just didn't want to flow. I personally would not go after the PPU with anything less than a temperature controlled hot air station. That said, if you don't solder regularly, I would also give SERIOUS thought to whether a self install of the nesrgb is a good idea. I don't believe that's a particularly easy install, and I figure you are already in this for $200 or so - without the right equipment, this is one I'd personally send out.
 

waali

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I've completed 2 NES PPU removals for the RGB mod. One removal was with soldering iron and the other with a desoldering station.
The iron removal took forever and I finally had to cut a couple of pins and mend as nothing would remove the solder fully. The desoldering station took no time at all.
 

Ice Man

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Ice Man
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You will certainly want a desoldering pump (gun would be even better) since the PPU has at least 3 pins connected to ground plane. Those absorb alot of heat and will be very tricky without proper tools. I've done the mod myself on various NES and Famicom systems and I'm glad to have a proper desoldering pump + soldering station with temperature setting.
 

FREE_WORLD

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Proper tools are worth their weight in gold...
You either buy the equipment and hold on to it in case you have a future use for it - or buy it do the mod work and then sell it on...?
 

clueless

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snobgamergr
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Well I guess that my only option is to ask for help from someone who has proper desoldering equipment. My soldering iron won't be enough to provide proper heat as you say these boards are absorbing heat.
I managed although to desolder that transistor and do a proper composite mod some time ago without much trouble. Maybe I got lucky or that part of the board isn't that heat resistant
 

SaturnHST

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I watched this video:

Then I bought a Hakko FR-301 and have desoldered several NES CPU/PPU's. It was easy to do but I did get the nozzle clogged and had to buy 2 more nozzles. I would not try to desolder those with a regular soldering iron and pump as it would take too long and is not as effective in removing all of the solder.
 
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