TiBook Batttery Fallout

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Date: Monday, June 2nd, 2003, 10:31
Category: PowerBook 15-Inch, User Group

I have a Ti 400 and I managed to convince my wife and a friend to each buy one of the early model TiBooks. I never had the intermittent disconnect battery problem, but recently found the battery fell out while in my TiBag. I picked up my wife’s the other day and the battery fell out. My friend says hers falls out on occasion. Read more . . .


I have a Ti 400 and I managed to convince my wife and a friend to each buy one of the early model TiBooks. I never had the intermittent disconnect battery problem, but recently found the battery fell out while in my TiBag. I picked up my wife’s the other day and the battery fell out. My friend says hers falls out on occasion. I recall that people were adding shrink wrap tubing to the posts, so I tried this and there was very little improvement.
I stopped at an Apple store because I heard they had an in-store fix, but was told that the minimum cost would be $300 to send the machine to Apple. $900 worth for fixing all three PowerBooks.
The battery does have a fair amount of play, but I don’t think it can fall out without sliding the latch and I have never had the power interrupted to the computer do to the looseness. I tried adding a foam shim along the side of the battery, opposite the latch, to push the battery against the latch and eliminate the play. This helped, but I eventually found that adding the foam to the bottom of the battery compartment close to the latch had the best effect. This has made the latch a bit more difficult to move and the battery has not fallen out since.
I have seen reports of the latch being too tight on the next generation of TiBooks – gigabit ethernet, so I assume they either changed the battery size slightly or the battery compartment clearances. Anyone know what changed? I suppose that if the battery size has changed, it would be better to attach the foam shim to the original batteries, so that newer batteries would not be too tight.
Ed: Bob, I think the greatest likelihood is that the latch, which portrudes slightly from the bottom of the case, is catching and accidentally releasing the battery. I believe the clearance on the latch itself may have been slightly improved in later generation TiBooks.
As for the intermittent disconnect problem, that was fixed by subtle changes to the battery contacts in later models. I can vouch for having shims installed (without asking, actually) by Apple repair technicians when I sent my early-shipping Ti/400 in for a different problem. Those of you who don’t know what we’re talking about, incidentally, early TiBooks have a tendency to power down if they’re moved or touched in the wrong way. I still occasionally see this problem, though less often, with my TiBook; it seems to be partly a function of the early-shipping cases which seem to be a bit more flexible than later models. That’s purely anecdotal, of course — the one thing I can say with confidence is the new Aluminum alloy cases are more rigid and overall a better choice than Titanium alloy.
Got reliability experience with the TiBook? Since our comments interface is down, just submit a story to the Newswire; that’s working! -PK

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