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Computer Power Plug

Discussion in 'Electronic Repair' started by mcp6453, Sep 30, 2006.

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  1. mcp6453

    mcp6453 Guest

    My wife has an IBM ThinkPad T23 notebook computer. She's on her fourth
    power supply because they keep breaking at the power plug. Since the
    plugs are molded they cannot be repaired. I replaced the plug with a
    Radio Shack 2.5mm by 5.5mm plug, but it is not a good connector. It will
    disconnect with the slightest movement.

    Since a new IBM power adapter works fine, I don't believe that there is
    a cold solder joint on the motherboard, although there could be. If I
    knew how to get into the case, I would re-solder the jack, but I could
    end up trashing the computer.

    Does anyone know where I can get a QUALITY solder-on power plug for an
    IBM ThinkPad? The center wire in the cable is about 20AWG diameter,
    which means the flimsy Radio Shack crap is not a good fit.

    It would be great to find a source for pigtails with molded plugs such
    that all I have to do is to put an intermediate connector on the cable.
  2. budgie

    budgie Guest

    There are two distinct sets of dimensional outlines for concentric ("DC power")
    connectors. There is an EIA family and an EIAJ family. The former are more
    common in electronic supply houses incl. RatShack, while most so-called quality
    imported eqiupment seems to use the EIAJ outlines.
  3. Guest

    Maybe you should try putting some reinforcing on the power plug, like
    covering the area most likely to break with a layer of hot glue, or
    maybe wrapping it with duct tape, or educating your wife to be more
    gentle. I have never heard of anyone doing that much damage, certainly
    not repeatedly.

    H. R. Hofmann
  4. mkaras

    mkaras Guest

    I can relate to the problem you are encountering. I have had several
    ThinkPad power supply DC power connectors fail at the strain relief of
    the cable. These things generally use a round cable that has a center
    conductor and a spiral wrapped shield. I have found that it is the
    shield that eventially breaks and fails.

    I have replaced the ends with replacement plugs I purchased from
    Mouser. I am surprised you found the correct sized connector at Radio
    Shack. I have checked at their stores repeatedly over several years in
    several states and have never found them to carry the correct size
    connector (in terms if the barrel inside and outside diameters). Mouser
    seems to have almost all sizes available and for excellent prices. For
    my ThinkPad T43 and 600E model power supplies I bought the Mouser part
    numbers 1710-3225 (for a metal shelled unit) and 1710-2512 (for a
    plastic shelled plug). Both fit the DC jack on the back of the
    computers as good as the originals on the power bricks.

    You may check out Mouser at:

    - mkaras
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