anyone here know how to fix/replace a SFF-8643 female connector?

Discussion in 'RAID Controllers and Host Bus Adapters' started by BLinux, Dec 5, 2018 at 11:52 PM.

  1. BLinux

    BLinux Well-Known Member

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    I got some motherboards that came with damaged onboard SFF-8643:

    IMG_20181204_094606.jpg

    They seem to be "press fit" and held on to the PCB with tiny screws (3 of them) from the back. I think they are like these:



    So, I'm wondering if I might be able to buy a new connector, unscrew them, and replace them? Anyone have experience with this? From the backside, there doesn't appear to be any through hole pins that are soldered.
     
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  2. BLinux

    BLinux Well-Known Member

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    I couldn't sleep, and then i remembered i had a M1215 HBA card that wasn't working (firmware crashes when drives are detected, re-flash didn't help). I dug it out of my box of dead/broken PCI-E cards and it had the same type of pressfit 8643 connector that was secured by 3 screws. Cool, something I can play with to figure this out for myself.

    Removed the 3 screws, but the connector was still very securely attached to the board. Started slowly prying with a flat screwdriver and it eventually pulled out. So, indeed, these are not soldered at all and only "pressed" into the 36x2=72 holes in the PCB board, which means they are actually pretty easy to replace. The pins look like the eye of a sewing needle, just a lot smaller. I guess the "eye" part gets compressed as they are pressed into the holes on the PCB and secured mostly by the resulting friction of the "eye" applying pressure against the insides of the holes.

    IMG_20181206_010807.jpg

    So, now i have a dual 1x2 SFF-8643 female right angle connector. Looking at the hole pattern, the board above can accommodate this right angle version, which actually might work great for me as I actually prefer the cable going out horizontally rather than vertically. I will have to see what this means for fitment in chassis though, as it does stick out beyond the dimensions of the board by maybe a 1cm.
     
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  3. BLinux

    BLinux Well-Known Member

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  4. Terry Kennedy

    Terry Kennedy Well-Known Member

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    The square pin / round hold relies on the pins digging into the thru plating on the hole to form an air-tight connection. You may not get a reliable connection when re-using the connectors, as both the pins on the connectors and the plating on the holes has deformed somewhat from previous usage. Just keep this in mind if you run into problems later on. You might need to solder the pins in that case, but bear in mind that the connector was not designed for soldering.
     
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