Fixing a PineTime Charging Cradle

I accidentally pulled the cord out of my #PineTime charging cradle. Thankfully, fixing it is quite easy.

Update, October 26: It's been working fine with this repair for over two months now.

Update, February 22, 2024: A week or so ago, I pulled the cord out again. This time, I used some hot glue to hold the cord in place; I would suggest doing this in the future, and added it to the instructions.



Step 1: Open the case

Opening the charging cradle case is normally difficult, but having the cord pulled out makes it much easier. Hold on to the top part, then insert a somewhat pointy object such as a pen into the hole where the cord goes. Push down with this object, and the bottom should separate from the top. Be sure not to lose the small rectangular piece of plastic with the hole; the cord goes through this.

Step 2: Remove the PCB

There is a small PCB inside the charger, fastened to the case with a small Phillips screw. Remove the screw; do not lose it. The PCB will lift up easily.

Step 3: Put the cord back though the small piece of plastic

Push the cord through the small piece of plastic from step 1. This may be a bit difficult, because the cord barely fits through the hole. Push the piece of plastic a few centimeters/inches back for now; the exact distance doesn't matter.

Step 4: Cut and strip the wires as needed

Cut the wires from the cable to be about the same length, and strip them if needed. You only need a couple millimeters/less than an eighth of an inch of wire exposed; too much could make it difficult to avoid shorts.

Step 5: Solder

Solder the wires to the solder connections on the PCB; do not solder to the large copper pads. Make sure you connect red to + and black to –.

Step 6: Put the PCB back in

Put the PCB back in the case (make sure the large copper pads line up with the pins) and fasten it with the screw.

Step 7: Test it

Connect the cord to a USB power source and check the pins on the outside of the case with a multimeter set to measure DC voltage. When viewing the top of the charger with the pins up, the left pin should be positive and the right pin should be negative. The voltage should be approximately 5 V.

Step 8: Secure the cord

Put the cord back through the hole in the case. Move the small piece of plastic along the cord so it fits in the slot for it.

Step 9: Glue cord in place

This step is optional, but recommended. Use the hot glue gun to attach the cord to the inside of the case to keep it from pulling out again.

Step 9 Step 10: Close the case

Put the bottom part of the case back on; be sure to put the side that holds the cord in the right place. There will not be a firm snap; the case should still stay together.

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