A black screen with single beep every five seconds when attempting to turn on the computer was the starting point of this endeavour. The backup hadn't been working for about a month (of course) and some rather valuable information was needed from the hard drive (my wife's academic work).
I toyed with the idea of pulling out the hard drive and recovering the data but decided to go for the repair because firstly, the computer was still adequate for our needs and secondly, this was by far the more interesting option.
I was unaware of what this beeping sound meant but after some online investigation I learnt that this signals failed RAM and also that the RAM is soldered onto the logic board in this particular model. A link to ifixit was a great find and provided precise information regarding a repair.
I ordered the suggested tools and the logic board through ifixit and they came via Fedex within a week (to Australia). The repair was straight forward following the repair guide and the computer works like nothing ever happened to it - super!
If you don't like throwing things out as soon as they break and enjoy a mild challenge, then this is the way to go.