There are so many things we could do if we only knew how. This area aims to catalog most specialized skills necessary to perform certain kinds of repairs.

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What would be a good way to start learning?

Hello fellow tinkerers and fiddlers. I've finally taken the plunge and decided to learn by myself how to fix small personal electronics! As exciting as this may seem, I unfortunately have no real idea to start. I do have a background and knowledge in basic soldering, wiring, and general repair-ology. But I lack the real time and skill in fixing common stuff (broken screens, replacing dead batteries, etc.) Any tips to where i can get some old electronics that i can fix and get some real, first hand knowledge? My ultimate goal would to be making a small business, fixing peoples broken iPods, phones, and general electronics here in the barracks. Nothing too crazy.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

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So, It's been over a year, and I am proud to say thanks to iFixit I have a small electronics repair business going on the side! Unfortunately I haven't been as active in the community as I would like, I have been using the guides and tools nonstop! Thanks to the awesome guys running it, and the even more awesome people that come and give their spare time to post some sorely needed guides, I have racked in around 50 iPhone repairs, 8 android phone repairs, around 30 laptop repairs/ maintenance, 5 consoles, and numerous other random devices!

iFixed it.- Ash

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ashtoast, one of the first things to get into would be to read schematics and how to approach proper trouble shooting. Collect as much information as you can about the devices you are interested in. get as many guides and service manuals as possible, you'll be surprised how handy they will become. Try to find most common errors and their fixes. Seriously, that is have the battle. Just check on here (ifixit) the amount of gray screen issues, overheating issues of Xbox's and PS3's. That way you will not just have to go and keep replacing parts. Of course a knowledge in basic electronics will help as well, it's nice to know the difference between a capacitor and resistor. Another really important thing, in my opinion of course, is to learn how to properly use a multimeter. Soldering will become another issue. Most devices are easier fixed with a hot air station due to the fact that they are using a lot of SMD components. You may also consider investing in a small reflow, or rework, station. Not very expensive but a great tool to have. Of you need broken stuff, you can always try ebay. I've gotten tons of broken iPods, cameras and other small electronics for decent prices. The other places are pawnshops, garage sales, and Craigslist etc. There are of course many many more things, but I do hope that this will help.

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This helps out a lot. Thank you very much oldturkey03! I'll be sure to brush up on my multimeter skills a little more, and stalk around some of the local pawn shops.

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If you need a few items, I got a couple of cameras that need some repair, most of those require lenses. I am more than willing to donate to your cause ;-). Send me an email and I may have some literature that might come in handy i.e. great SMD soldering manual etc. BTW. thanks for accepting my answer and welcome to ifixit :-)

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ashtoast will be eternally grateful.
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