Using a v2.1 SSD adapter to fit a 2280 SSD (without trackpad interferance)
#1
Photo 
The v2.1 SSD adapter that is shipped with the initial (first three?) Pinebook Pro batches has a couple of problems. In particular the back of the adapter board interferes with the operation of the trackpad once the case is reassembled and the ribbon cable doesn't quite match the layout of the mother- and adapter- boards.

I'm told there is a plan to offer replacement adapter boards that overcome these issues... but if you have a Pinebook Pro and a new SSD in your paws right now then there are hacks that allow you to install the SSD. Note that this is an unofficial guide and, whilst I have put warnings on the tricky bits, the decision to proceed is yours and yours alone! Please do not undertake these changes if you cannot afford to fix any damage that results.

The instructions do not include a guide for correct removal and replacement of the bottom panel (look on the wiki) and these instructions also assume you will take appropriate precautions to prevent damage from static electricity.

1. Firstly we must remove the section of the adapter board that interferes with the track pad. Score a line between the Pine logo and the text. The line should be a right angles to the adapter board itself. Cut the board along this line. I used a Dremel with a cutting disc but a hacksaw would probably also work. If using a hacksaw cut with the saw blade at a shallow angle from the flat side of the board (e.g. don't try to cut the edge side directly) and expect to replace the blade because circuit boards are made of pretty tough material. In all cases make sure you cut the board a long way from anything electronic, the filings will include plenty of copper. Clean up the end with sandpaper as needed.

2. Remove the sticky tape that holds down the cabling the is routed in the bottom corner of the machine (middle of the diagram below).

3. Re-route the trackpad ribbon cable to ensure it is fully clear of the SSD adapter. This means adding three new folds to replace the single fold using for the factory routing. The new folds can be fairly light since the fold only needs to be enough to allow the cable to hold its shape. Any more than that risks breaking the wires in the cable.

4. Replace the sticky tape and use it to hold the newly routed trackpad cable in place.

5. Add the SSD to the adapter board and secure in place. I used a small cable tie to avoid leaving a residue on the SSD but I suspect tape would be more secure! If using tape ensure the screw hole are still accesible.

6. Screw the adapter in place (3 black screws from the SSD kit).

7. Attach the ribbon cable to the motherboard. The connector has a tiny plastic locking bar: gently lift the bar, push fit the cable and lower the bar again.

8. Attach the cable to the SSD adapter. The fit is very tight and will require a couple of small folds to get it to reach. Ensure the cable is squarely fitted into the socket before lowering the locking bar.

For reference, below is a picture of the installation in my machine.

[Image: 49063689791_9d7948cf7c_h.jpg]
PineTime: wasp-os and MicroPython, Pinebook Pro:  Debian Bullseye
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#2
* Excellent Daniel ! *
I was thinking along the same lines on shortening the adapter board.
Also the 'cable tie' is probably better suited to the warm interior than tape.
..> (and there will not be any glue residue if you need to service it later)
I had been thinking of a metal band (like an aluminum soda can) about 1cm (3/8") wide
with the folds at the edge of the adapter board, squarely bent so it would not touch the edges of the SSD.
>( Perhaps a tape or paper insulator between the band and the SSD ) ?

* The re-routing of the track pad ribbon cable shows nice attention to detail.
*** Great Picture
Thank you for sharing ! !

I am very curious what the clearances are from there to the case  ..?
perhaps a very small ball of clay, set on a piece of paper (so it does not stick to anything)
One to check the clearance form the SSD to the case and one to check clearance from the adapter to the case..?
install the bottom case,  then remove it and measure the clay...  ?
After measuring, possibly use a thermal pad to send heat to the case..?

(I heard there are measurments but I have not found them)
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#3
To be honest I'd guess that the clearance on the bottom panel is zero although I'm afraid I won't be able to measure it any time soon due to travel.
PineTime: wasp-os and MicroPython, Pinebook Pro:  Debian Bullseye
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#4
(11-15-2019, 04:37 AM)danielt Wrote: To be honest I'd guess that the clearance on the bottom panel is zero although I'm afraid I won't be able to measure it any time soon due to travel.

Thank you.
I can confirm that your tutorial worked fine for me with a samsung nvme EVO 960
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#5
Hello. I was wondering when an update/replacement SDD adapter is going to be available? Just wondering. In the meantime, I might try the above mentioned modification.

Thanks,

/MickTheGeek
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#6
Just tried the adapter with a WD PC SN520 256 GiB SSD.

Had to fold the ribbon cable a bit.

Pinebook Pro doesn't power up after installing it. Power LED blinks but Display never wakes up. Might be a power hungry SSD.

I have to admit that I didn't yet try the SSD on another PC.

UPDATE: Put the SSD in an USB enclosure where it works fine.
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#7
(11-14-2019, 04:22 AM)danielt Wrote: < SNIP >

For reference, below is a picture of the installation in my machine.

[Image: 49063689791_9d7948cf7c_h.jpg]

I'm hitting mine tomorrow. I think that I will be using adhesive fabric, hi-temp wiring tape to secure things.
I just sliced my adapter with a hacksaw and hit the edge with a swiss file for burrs. :-)
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#8
Does anyone know for sure if this clearance issue still applies to the ANSI Pinebook Pro models?

The reason I ask is I bought the adapter and received a version 2.1 adapter. I installed it with just the 3 provided screws and from what I can tell it does not interfere with the trackpad at all. It even appears to easily clear the cable for the trackpad. I can click on the trackpad and don't notice any issues.

I guess I am wondering if maybe the height of the standoffs was increased enough to allow proper clearance?

Just hoping for confirmation from someone before I open the box for the SSD and install it. Wink

(01-27-2020, 06:30 PM)appdev46 Wrote: Does anyone know for sure if this clearance issue still applies to the ANSI Pinebook Pro models?  

The reason I ask is I bought the adapter and received a version 2.1 adapter.  I installed it with just the 3 provided screws and from what I can tell it does not interfere with the trackpad at all.  It even appears to easily clear the cable for the trackpad.  I can click on the trackpad and don't notice any issues.

I guess I am wondering if maybe the height of the standoffs was increased enough to allow proper clearance?    

Just hoping for confirmation from someone before I open the box for the SSD and install it.  Wink

Nevermind!  I put it all back together and noticed the interference with trackpad.  

Has anyone tried putting some washers between the adapter board and the standoffs?  I will give that a try if I can find the right washers.
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#9
After reading these excellent instructions I wanted to try the same.  However, I don't have a dremel tool.  I wanted to use my miter saw but was stumped for a while about how to hold the adapter in place during the cut.  I ended up masking off the part of the board with the connector and using some #4 machine screws in existing holes in the board to hold it onto a piece of 2x6.  This kept my guide hand a safe distance away from the cutting blade, but I had to take care that I wasn't cutting next to one of the machine screws.  I also swapped my normal 60 tooth finishing blade for a 200 tooth plywood/osb blade.  It worked quite well, but as has already been noted PCB is surprisingly tough stuff.  I'm glad I went with a fine toothed blade and took my time during the cut.

Here is what it looked like after I made the cut:

[Image: attachment.php?aid=1680]

Here is what it looked like after I installed the adapter with a drive in my PBP, but before I added a 1.5 mm thick strip of thermal pad between the drive and the bottom of the case:

[Image: attachment.php?aid=1625]


Attached Files
.jpg   after_trim.jpg (Size: 67.91 KB / Downloads: 571)
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#10
The v2 adapter that shipped with my ANSI PBP in January had a similar issue; with some pressure on the back plate while using it, the right-click of the touchpad would get stuck. I cut the adapter PCB in an appropriate place and it works fine now. I honestly just used a pair of hobby scissors - the PCB is thin enough to just cut it like it. No issues whatshoever, the board got a little bent front the pressure but it's thin enough to bend back into proper shape.

Works like a charm!
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