i found that i needed to "rock" the upper case left to right, not up and down, in order to remove it. and although i was trying to be careful, the keyboard ribbon cable was so tight that the connection popped off when i released the upper lid. took a minute to find the connection on the logic board.
when i was removing the hard drive, for whatever reason, there was no bluetooth board on top of the retaining bracket.
other than that, the directions were fantastic. i'll recommend you to all my friend!
the only sad part is that it turned out the hard drive was not the source of the "rice crispies" noise, which is what sent me on this journey in the first place. i now think it's the right-hand fan. whoo hoo! more maintennance!