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[HOWTO]Change the digitizer screen (ZTE Blade)

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#1
Goots

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Replacement screens are now available on ebay (thanks to MoDaCo user Ashenfall for alerting me :D ) so I thought I'd take some pics as I did the repair...

The phone had been accidentally slammed in a car door by a regretful daughter...

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...so this is what came from ebay, £19.99 with free delivery.

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Before you start, just for information - this is the bit which links the digitizer screen to the motherboard...

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Take the back off and remove the battery, sim card and external SDCard, then remove these 8 screws (posidrive, gauge 00). One screw is covered by a small White sticker, presumably for warranty purposes.

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Now the rear cover will lift off. You might need to carefully prise it off to begin with because it is held in by the shape of the plastic cover. Use a flat bladed precision screwdriver to carefully prise the two parts apart, starting from the bottom. Once it has started to separate, it comes apart quite easily. Be careful not to lose the volume up/down button piece at this point because it is only held in with a bit of thin plastic. If it drops out, you can put it back in at the rebuild stage, but make sure the plastic strip lines up with its guide slots. You'll know what I mean when you see it. Anyhow, it looks like this now...

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This next bit is slightly tricky, but not that bad. There is a tiny connector which keeps the ribbon cable from the digitizer connected to the motherboard, and it has a tiny little flap which you need to lift up before the cable can be pulled out of the connector. I have tried to capture it in this image (the little Brown bit is the flap shown in it's lifted position). You will need a small flat precision screwdriver to prise it open...

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...this next image just shows the motherboard completely detached from the digitizer screen. At this point you should remove the front button piece from the old fascia (Home/Menu/Back button thingy).

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Refitting is the exact reverse of the above steps. It's a bit tricky getting the ribbon cable back into the clip connector but be patient and you will do it. Make sure the flap is snapped back down tight after you have pushed the ribbon cable home. When you put the motherboard into it's new shell, make sure the front button piece is lined up with the hole in the fascia, and make sure the volume button is also lined up. After rebuilding, here is the finished article with a highly embarrassing wallpaper of the original culprit (this is her punishment for breaking it in the first place)...

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I hope those are of use to someone :D

-Goots

Edited by Goots, 15 September 2011 - 08:19 PM.

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#2
Smiff2

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hey can we get those screens without the "San Francisco" branding?! that looks like original ZTE part made for Orange, is it?

Edited by Smiff2, 26 March 2011 - 03:06 PM.

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#3
StevenHarperUK

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I have one of these to do for a Friend - Mines been apart already - good pic's though: thanks

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#4
Azurren

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Thanks for the guide!
Although I hope I will never have to use it..

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#5
Goots

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Yeah this was originally an Orange SanFran which was quickly unlocked and Seb404'd. I'd imagine the proper Blade fascias are available, but you'll have to look on ebay :D

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#6
HomeEnd

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Hey guys,

after my San Francisco fell out of my pocket yesterday while riding my bike really fast (at least 25mph, actually, it's quiet possible that I drove over it O.o), this is what it looks like afterwards:

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Honestly, i'm impressed that the high-glossy battery door I was always worried about for scratches doesn't have a single mark on it. So, if I'm able to change the front glass and cover, I'll be good again :D

Goots, could you send me the link where exactly you purchased the repalcement part? Only thing I could find on Ebay was a used one for £23,99+shipping.

Oh, and one more thing, are the those wannabe-chromium-stripes part of the front cover? Or of the "middle-frame"? I can't really see it on the pictures. Unfortunately, mines got a dint in it since the drop:

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But, of course, this isn't as bad as the cracked glass.

Greets,
HomeEnd

Edited by HomeEnd, 27 March 2011 - 01:27 PM.

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#7
StevenHarperUK

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Goots, could you send me the link where exactly you purchased the repalcement part? Only thing I could find on Ebay was a used one for £23,99+shipping.


The original Ebay Link was

http://cgi.ebay.co.u...5#ht_1613wt_905

My friend has ordered one also - I have the job of fitting it.

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#8
HomeEnd

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Okay, thank you. This is the same item I found, but I was kinda confused about the condition "used". I don't believe he took 50+ phones apart to sell the digitizers on Ebay :D

Another thing, since this seems to be the non-glossy grey/black version and I'm in posession of the shiny flat black layout, are the grey battery doors anywhere on sale? It would look awful otherwise with a grey front and black glossy back.

Greets

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#9
Goots

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Thanks StevenHarperUK for providing the link. It seems they are selling well so he's put the price up - cheeky!

The chrome bits are attached to the internal back piece if I remember correctly, the bit you remove to get to the motherboard.

Edited by Goots, 27 March 2011 - 12:33 PM.

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#10
HomeEnd

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All righty,

so, I'm gonna purchase the main frame (or "internal back piece", however that thing's called) too since it's only like 2 bucks and my phone will be flawless again after the repair :D

Exept for the battery cover being colored different... but that isn't going to look that bad, I hope. Oh well, including shipping to Germany, the whole procedure is gonna cost me about 35 euros... not bad for like 10 miliseconds of inattention :D

Greets

Sent from my San Francisco using the cracked (but amazingly still full-functional) touchscreen :(

Edited by HomeEnd, 27 March 2011 - 01:31 PM.

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#11
Magtavia

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That's strange, is there a curse on these phones? I dropped my debranded San Francisco on the kitchen floor an hour ago resulting in a cracked screen! A quick google and ebay search brought up this forum and the item in question. Thanks Goots for the useful guide. One question - does it make any difference whether you have an OLED or TFT screen? (mine is TFT). Cheers

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#12
Goots

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I would imagine it will be fine but I can't say for definite.

The bit we are replacing here is the digitizer which is just a thin film of glass that sits over the top of the actual display. I'm 99% sure you will be fine, if not, just re-sell the part :D

Note this repair will only work if the glass is damaged. If the actual tft/oled bit is also damaged then this won't fix it.

Edited by Goots, 27 March 2011 - 03:04 PM.

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#13
aequalszero

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Very useful guide - and more importantly, doesn't make the process look as scary as that Youtube video (I think) did!

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#14
That-Guy

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Great job with the guide, thanks for the effort :D

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#15
mickey megabyte

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Great job with the guide, thanks for the effort :D


+1

it's comforting to know that a quick inexpensive fix is easily available :D

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#16
Phoenix Silver

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The best cure is prevention
i have just purchased a silicon case and a screen protector (dealextreme)
I have to buy a usb cable anyway

blade is new new (4 days) must be protected :D

not so expensive 4 pounds the 3 items (free shipping)

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Si le corps est mortel, l’âme elle est éternelle.

#17
milkykung

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@Goots

Thank you for taking your time to take photos.

@StevenHarperUK

Thank you for the link mate :D

I'm starting to be more protective of my OLED Blade with a note on screen replacement item.

Cheers,

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Ex-Symbian user, Android newbie ^^

#18
Rotmann

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Great guide, thanks for the contribution.

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#19
DannyDanny

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This is amazing. great tip

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#20
StevenHarperUK

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My friends Digitizer arrived yesterday and went in fine.

All in all about 8 minutes to do.

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