Introduction

Get back your R button functionality with a new right shoulder button.

Image 1/1: The screws are held in place by locking washers, and will not come out of the back cover.
  • Unscrew the four Phillips #00 screws along the top of the back cover.

  • The screws are held in place by locking washers, and will not come out of the back cover.

  • The comments section is full of unlucky souls who will tell you that the screws here through step 4 will strip incredibly easily. Press down fairly hard, and go slow.

#00 screwdriver is too big... probably need a #000

thomascroguennec - Reply

#00 will work - but you must press down firmly and sort of jerk the screw out a few degrees at a time. If you don't press firmly, the screws strip very easily. Using #000 will strip the screws more easily.

Tai -

I used a #0 without any issues and 0 stripped. I used the #0 for all screws internally and externally. The head was sharp and I applied adequate amounts of pressure when loosening the screw.

Ben Kevan -

The correct screwdriver should be a JIS, or you can get a screwdriver specific for the 3DS from other sites for less than $2

Oscar - Reply

do you have to buy it

deeznuts -

I used Phillips #000 and it worked like a charm, i need to order a new SD board or do you guys think i should send it. What happened is that it got water damaged and everything works fine when i opened it everything looked fine no signs of water corrosion everything on the 3DS works exept it always give me a message saying the SD card is locked and i know for a fact it isnt locked i already tried using 3 different SD cards and none of them are lock protected and yes they are formatted as well. I need help

Leo Torres - Reply

there's a switch on the SD card, switch it and it will be unlocked again. it happened to me once too.

Bagel -

david hodson you are incredible. literally all you need to do is heat the screen up and pry it off and you make them take apart the whole thing

melody - Reply

You've done this?

magykmaster -

I have to ask the same question. If just the glass display is broken, and you're heating it up to remove the glass, is it really necessary to remove everything? Doesn't like like it is necessary

Wade -

I just did it your way and it went fine. didnt even have to remove the battery. This is incredible misstep on the authors part.

patrick -

I used a PH0x50, but it wasn't easy.

John - Reply

This may be a dumb question but where do I buy the 3DS upper screen?

John - Reply

eBay... Just do a search for the 3DS Upper screen. $9.49 & it comes with the tools.

Gary Darnell -

The LCD screen I ordered came with all the tools I needed except a pair of tweezers. All in all it was about $14.00 and a little bit of my time.

Gary Darnell - Reply

Does anyone know where I can find the right bumper button for a 3ds? I can't find it on ebay must of damaged it playing smash bros.

Steven Castro Parrilla - Reply

Really wish I had read the comments first... How about instead of the warning saying to press down hardly and go slow, you say to use the correct screwdriver size like others mentioned in the comments. I not only stripped multiple screws, even after putting a glove on for more pressure, I bent my screwdriver from pressing down so hard. Granted it's a cheap jeweler's kit screwdriver, but it still would've been nice to not have that problem and be informed of the right size in the first place.

hockeymorgan35 - Reply

Got my tools one day after ordering, as I live a couple hours away from the supplier, Will post again when i try guide.

nintendokakashi - Reply

Image 1/2: Grab the top edge of the back cover with your opposite hand so that the cover does not fall back into place. Image 2/2: Flip the 3DS over again so that the back cover is facing up.
  • Hold the device in one hand and turn it over.

  • Grab the top edge of the back cover with your opposite hand so that the cover does not fall back into place.

  • Flip the 3DS over again so that the back cover is facing up.

  • Pull the back cover up and away from the rest of the device to remove it.

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Image 1/3: Pry the battery up with the plastic opening tool. Image 2/3: Grab the top edge of the battery and lift it out of the lower case. Image 3/3: Grab the top edge of the battery and lift it out of the lower case.
  • Insert a plastic opening tool into the notch in the lower case above the battery.

  • Pry the battery up with the plastic opening tool.

  • Grab the top edge of the battery and lift it out of the lower case.

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Image 1/1: Remove the 2.4 mm silver Phillips screw above the game cartridge slot.
  • Remove the nine 6.3 mm black Phillips screws from the lower case.

  • Remove the 2.4 mm silver Phillips screw above the game cartridge slot.

Had to give up at this point. Tried using the ifixit #00 phillips screwdriver to take out two screws and ended up stripping them.

Demios - Reply

Stuck at the same spot, those screws are in there really tight.

John Pasula - Reply

Ruined my screws because of incorrect head, thanks!

3dsuser - Reply

I had so much trouble with these screws, I gave up. Unfortunately, I can't accept failure so tried again. I figured out if you turn it right before you loosen it worked. Maybe it was just me, but I turned it right then kept pressure as I turned to loosen. I was surprised I hadn't stripped any screws out.

Nicole Bauer - Reply

Does anyone have any idea of how to remove these screws. I've pretty badly stripped the screws and I've gone to 20+ pages trying to figure this. I'm considering just prying the !@#$ thing.

Vino - Reply

use a dremil and make it a flat head

Ralph Prowant -

ruined my screws here too...what the !@#$ nintendo?

trying to survive a nuclear meltdown inside the !@#$ thing

Hamza Jarkas - Reply

More like trying to subtly enforce planned obsolescence by not allowing you to make repairs to your device.

Ullyssys -

I used a #00 Philips 1/8" bit with no problem; however, the narrow diameter of the counter sunk hole can inhibit making secure contact with the screw head. You can be using the right bit (#00) but if the diameter of the bit shaft is too big you won't get proper contact.

I found this to be an excellent guide. Thanks

Dave W - Reply

If anyone can point me to a link to purchase the 9 screws, let me know. Contacted Nintendo and they said I'd have to send it in. Email me at xavierfflores@gmail.com

Xavier Flores - Reply

Unscrewed the nine 6.3 mm screws using the J000 bit from the iFixit 54 bit driver kit without much effort & without stripping the screw heads. Just gotta really position the bit correctly on the screw to have a proper fitting & not strip the screw heads.

STZ9 - Reply

The screws didn't strip but the philips screw driver did? @__@

These are rough either way.

John Zhou - Reply

I used a "Whia 273 - PH000x40" screwdriver and held it firmly pushing the palm of my hand on the yellow end of the screwdriver and rocked the screw slightly (counter clockwise and clockwise) until it started to move. Then, without letting up on the pressure I carefully backed it out. The screwdriver is excellent because it is hardened (unlike some cheapo's out there) and the very tip is blunt not sharp. If the tip is too sharp, the point will bottom out in the screw and the sides that do all the work, won't be able to fully contact the inside of the screw. This screwdriver fits so well that the screws actually stick to it once they are removed. If the screwdriver moves AT ALL when you initially try it in the screw, STOP and find a better one. Also, start with the screws in the center, somehow they seem a little easier until you get the feel for it.

Paul -

Push down hard and turn counter-clockwise, or push down and rotate 3DS counter-clockwise until screw is loose.

Jonathan - Reply

Had the exact same problem, even tried the #000 screw driver too. Stripped the screws due to how tightly they are screwed in there and how easy they strip. I am now unsure what to do from here or if all I can do is give up.

Sean Baldwin - Reply

I second the one who suggested the Whia 273 PH000x40 screwdriver. I had a terrible time unscrewing these screws, and almost stripped them using a cheaper #000 screwdriver. Also tried a 3/16" flathead and destroyed the screwdriver. I bought the Whia and glad I did. It fit perfectly and did not slip at all. DEFINITELY recommend purchasing this high-quality screwdriver. Cost about $10 but well worth it to avoid the hassle.

pbrazis - Reply

The best way I found that works quite well, if you find a screwdriver or bit that is good enough: hold the screwdriver or bit with tons of pressure, and rotate the 3DS clockwise! It will come out in 5-6 rotations, you can do this step in about 10 minutes this way (put down a cloth first, don't scratch the front!)

Gannon Trueman - Reply

I HAVE A WAY TO GET OUT THE STRIPED SCREW. Like you, I had screwed up and tried everything to get the screw out. Do NOT try the glue in that tiny hole, you will get the screw glued permanently in there. The rubber band doesn't work in that tight space either. As desperate as I was, I was trying anything from nail polish to cramming the screw driver in as hard as I possible could. Until I realized that I had a drill. Yes, with the smallest head, I drilled into the screw a little bit, messed with the part I was trying to get out, drilled a little more, messed around, and then finally on my last attempt, I had successfully drilled off the top of the screw rendering the part free. It doesn't matter which drill you use as long as you can fit the head into the hole. Then drill forward like you are trying to drill a hole through wood. Now the only problem is that the remainder of the screw will be stuck in its place. All you really have to do is get a set of pliers and twist that puppy out. And there you go!

YuuChan - Reply

Most likely though, if you have all the other screws out and only have one striped screw, the part should just pop off and you wouldn't have to drill the entire head off the screw.

YuuChan - Reply

Image 1/3: There are still two ribbon cables connecting the mother board to the case, so be sure not to pull the lower case all the way off. Image 2/3: Use a plastic opening tool to pry the shoulder button ribbon cables off their sockets on the motherboard. Image 3/3: Remove the lower case from the device.
  • Lift the bottom edge of the lower case off the rest of the 3DS.

  • There are still two ribbon cables connecting the mother board to the case, so be sure not to pull the lower case all the way off.

  • Use a plastic opening tool to pry the shoulder button ribbon cables off their sockets on the motherboard.

  • Remove the lower case from the device.

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Image 1/3: Lift the battery shield up and out of the lower case. Image 2/3: Lift the battery shield up and out of the lower case. Image 3/3: Lift the battery shield up and out of the lower case.
  • Remove the three 3.6 mm Phillips screws securing the metal battery shield to the lower case.

  • Lift the battery shield up and out of the lower case.

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Image 1/1:
  • Remove the 3.6 mm Phillips screw from the right shoulder button cover.

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Image 1/3: Pry the black plastic cover up from the lower case. Image 2/3: Grab the cover and lift it off of the lower case. Image 3/3: If the shoulder button contact and ribbon cable come off with the cover, be sure to reinstall them in the correct orientation.
  • Insert a plastic opening tool under the left side of the right shoulder button cover.

  • Pry the black plastic cover up from the lower case.

  • Grab the cover and lift it off of the lower case.

    • If the shoulder button contact and ribbon cable come off with the cover, be sure to reinstall them in the correct orientation.

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Image 1/3: The shoulder button is held in place by a metal pin, and houses a small spring. Take care not to lose track of either of these pieces when removing the shoulder button. Image 2/3: The shoulder button is held in place by a metal pin, and houses a small spring. Take care not to lose track of either of these pieces when removing the shoulder button. Image 3/3: The shoulder button is held in place by a metal pin, and houses a small spring. Take care not to lose track of either of these pieces when removing the shoulder button.
  • Lift the right shoulder button out of the lower case.

  • The shoulder button is held in place by a metal pin, and houses a small spring. Take care not to lose track of either of these pieces when removing the shoulder button.

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Conclusion

To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.

32 other people completed this guide.

David Hodson

Member since: 04/13/2010

114,097 Reputation

130 Guides authored

6 Comments

Well done, thanks for the help, I had small problems with step 9 because of all those small parts but I managed to put everything back as it was. Thanks again :D

BlackZX - Reply

The ribbon came off the socket, now it is stuck and we cannot pull it out. How do you remove the socket without the ribbon. We attempted tweezers, but it did not budge. May have scratched things up a bit too. Help!! Thank you! We just want to pull it out and get another replacement right shoulder ribbon.

misdiva001 - Reply

Amazing guide, thank you!!

Daniel O - Reply

It was great! Phenomenal! I loved it! But... What happens if I accidentally snapped the L button's ribbon cable..? Can I just replace it..? Somehow..?

dalton haglund - Reply

Dalton,

You can order replacement L&R ribbons on Amazon, they're like $5.

Proudly Built -

Excellent guide, worked like a charm for replacing both shoulder buttons.

Proudly Built - Reply

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