04-17-2017 05:26 AM - edited 04-17-2017 09:02 AM
The keyboard on my Gen 1 X1 Carbon (Model 3444-CT0) has failed (´"9", "O", "L" and "." no longer work ) so I'd like to change it for a new one. The complete assembly with bezel, including touchpad and fingerprint reader is easy to buy and swap, but expensive as I only need the keyboard in the midde. I've found a source for a new keyboard alone (FRU 04Y0798) but can't figure out how to seperate it from the bezel to swap over. There are no obvious screws or retainers and the old keyboard seems solidly fixed to the bezel, even when I deform it.
Does anyone have any tips to remove and replace the keyboard module only (or better still get my missing letters back on the old one)?
Solved! Go to Solution.
04-17-2017 02:33 PM
I looked at one and other than 2 screws by the trackpoint buttons, there is nothing obvious holding the keyboard in. I didn't try to take it apart, because I thought I would likely break it. My guess is that the thing is assembled at the factory and the bezel comes with some sort of adhesive that holds it together. (The keyboard itself is not sold separately by Lenovo.) If it were mine, and the keyboard was unusable, I would remove the cables and everything else that screws in. I would use some sort of flat, sharp tool, like a rigid putty knife and try to pry the keyboard up to break the adhesive seal. I would try cleaning off the old adhesive. I would start with pure alcohol. I would expect that it is very likely that I would ruin the whole thing, but if I were replacing it anyway, I wouldn't care. I don't mind breaking something before I throw it away. I would NOT buy the keyboard before trying this.
04-18-2017 05:37 AM - edited 04-18-2017 05:38 AM
I'm also rapidly forming the opinion that it's glued, but I've nothing to lose. There are so many keyboard-only offers around I'm surprised it's not documented anywhere, as the keyboard alone costs 20% of the cost of a complete bezel assembly. If I Iook closely at picture I found on the net there appear to be holes adjcent to keys (C,V,B,M for example) and along the edges and corners. I suspect these are for some sort of spigots to glue/attach to.
05-15-2017 08:02 AM - edited 05-15-2017 08:57 AM
So, I'm now able to report back on my success in changing the keyboard..
I bought an original Lenovo keyboard brand new via Ebay. I spoke to the dealer before I made the purchase and he pretty much said that the old keyboard had to be broken out and the new one glued in place as suspected in earlier posts. However, that wasn't the case. The keyboard was delivered in four pieces - the mechanical keyboard itself and 3 plastic underlays - a black keyboard mask, a clear plastic sheet with little dots on and a white plastic backing (which included the pointing stick module). Each of these had a removable protection sheet which made it self-adhesive. so it was clear the intention was to build up the the layers into a complete keyboard by sticking them together.
Having disconnected all interface cables I proceeded to remove the same same layers from the old keyboard starting with the white outer cover (having first removed the red rubber cap on the trackpoint pointing stick, as this was integrated into the back of the white cover), simply lifting them from one corner and peeling them off. In doing so the layers were damaged but this was of less concern as they were being replaced, When I removed the third plastic layer, only the old keyboard mechanics were left and it was clear this was held in place by a large number of really small screws distributed throughout the keyboard - about 40 in total. I removed all these screws and lo and behold the keyboard could simply be lifted from the bezel assembly. I dropped in the new one and laboriously replaced all 40 screws (a magnetic screwdriver came in handy here to pick up each screw and locate it). Removing the backing paper so they became self-adhesive I aligned and added the new inner plastic layers in the correct order, finishing with the white cover. The trackpoint pointing stick module was already attached to the white cover but needed another 2 screws to attach it firmly to the assembly. Having re-attached the different interface cables I could now re-secure the bezel assembly to the main case with the 7 screws on the back and replace the rubber cap on the pointing stick.
I fired up the laptop and everything works perfectly, including keyboard lighting.
All I need to do now is replace the battery and it will be as good as new. A replacement battery is on it's way from China - I didn't want to order this until I was sure I could get the keyboard back and working.
Thanks for the help.
05-15-2017 09:55 PM