MacBook Pro 15" Core 2 Duo Model A1211 Right Clutch Hinge Replacement

Replace a broken clutch hinge to keep your display opening silky-smooth.

Edit Step 1 Battery  ¶ 

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Edit Step 1 Battery  ¶ 

  • Use your fingers to push both battery release tabs away from the battery, and lift the battery out of the computer.

Edit Step 2 RAM Shield  ¶ 

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Edit Step 2 RAM Shield  ¶ 

  • Remove the three identical Phillips screws from the memory door.

Edit Step 3  ¶ 

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Edit Step 3  ¶ 

  • Lift the memory door up enough to get a grip on it, and slide it toward you, pulling it away from the casing.

Edit Step 4 Upper Case  ¶ 

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Edit Step 4 Upper Case  ¶ 

  • Remove the two 2.8 mm Phillips screws in the battery compartment near the latch.

Edit Step 5  ¶ 

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Edit Step 5  ¶ 

  • Remove the following 6 screws:

    • Two 10 mm T6 Torx screws on either side of the RAM slot.

    • Four 14.5 mm Phillips screws along the hinge.

Edit Step 6  ¶ 

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Edit Step 6  ¶ 

  • Remove the four 3.2 mm Phillips screws on the port side of the computer.

Edit Step 7  ¶ 

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Edit Step 7  ¶ 

  • Rotate the computer 90 degrees and remove the two 3.2 mm Phillips screws from the rear of the computer.

Edit Step 8  ¶ 

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Edit Step 8  ¶ 

  • Rotate the computer 90 degrees again and remove the four 3.2 mm Phillips screws from the side of the computer.

Edit Step 9  ¶ 

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Edit Step 9  ¶ 

  • Do not yank the upper case off quickly. The case is attached to the logic board via a ribbon cable.

  • Lift up at the rear of the case and work your fingers along the sides, freeing the case as you go. Once you have freed the sides, you may need to rock the case up and down to free the front of the upper case (there are some hidden plastic clips that need to be clicked off).

Edit Step 10  ¶ 

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Edit Step 10  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the trackpad and keyboard ribbon cable from the logic board, removing tape as necessary.

  • Remove the upper case.

Edit Step 11 Display Assembly  ¶ 

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Edit Step 11 Display Assembly  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the three antenna cables attached to the Airport Extreme card.

  • Apple was kind enough to include a label showing where each color antenna cable plugs in - just make sure to look at this when reconnecting the antenna cables.

Edit Step 12  ¶ 

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Edit Step 12  ¶ 

  • Deroute the Airport antenna cables from their channel in the left speaker.

Edit Step 13  ¶ 

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Edit Step 13  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the iSight cable from the logic board by sliding the cable to the left and out of its connector.

Edit Step 14  ¶ 

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Edit Step 14  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the inverter cable from the logic board by placing a spudger beneath the cable and lifting up.

Edit Step 15  ¶ 

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Edit Step 15  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the display data cable from the logic board by pulling sideways.

Edit Step 16  ¶ 

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Edit Step 16  ¶ 

  • Remove the silver T6 Torx securing the ground loop in the display data cable to the casing.

Edit Step 17  ¶ 

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Edit Step 17  ¶ 

  • Support the display with one hand while removing the following 3 screws:

    • Two 9.5 mm silver T6 Torx screws with threads on only part of the shaft on the inside of the display hinges.

    • One 9.5 mm silver T6 Torx screw with threads on the entire shaft on the outside of the left hinge.

Edit Step 18  ¶ 

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Edit Step 18  ¶ 

  • Grasp the display assembly on both sides and lift it up and out of the computer.

Edit Step 19 Rear Display Bezel  ¶ 

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Edit Step 19 Rear Display Bezel  ¶ 

  • Remove the two 5 mm Phillips screws from the lower left and right corners of the display (two screws total).

Edit Step 20  ¶ 

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Edit Step 20  ¶ 

  • Insert the flat end of a spudger perpendicular to the face of the display between the plastic strip attached to the rear bezel and the front bezel.

  • Do not insert your spudger between the plastic strip and the rear bezel.

  • With the spudger still inserted, rotate it away from the display to separate the front and rear bezels.

  • Work along the left edge of the display until the rear bezel is evenly separated from the front bezel.

Edit Step 21  ¶ 

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Edit Step 21  ¶ 

  • Insert the flat end of a spudger perpendicular to the face of the display between the plastic strip attached to the rear bezel and the front bezel.

  • With the spudger still inserted, rotate it away from the display to separate the front and rear bezels.

  • Work along the right edge of the display until the rear bezel is evenly separated from the front bezel.

Edit Step 22  ¶ 

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Edit Step 22  ¶ 

  • Insert the flat end of a spudger between the front bezel and the plastic strip attached to the rear bezel near the screw holes at the bottom corners of the display.

  • Rotate your spudger toward the rear bezel to separate it from the front bezel.

  • If necessary, enlarge the gap between the lower edge of the rear bezel and the clutch cover until the two components are completely separated.

Edit Step 23  ¶ 

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Edit Step 23  ¶ 

  • Lift the rear bezel by its bottom edge and rotate it away from the display assembly to separate the top edge.

  • Remove the rear display bezel from the display assembly.

Edit Step 24 Display Inverter  ¶ 

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Edit Step 24 Display Inverter  ¶ 

  • The display inverter is a very thin and delicate circuit board that is easily broken. Use caution when handling.

  • Carefully lift the inverter board out of the clutch cover.

Edit Step 25  ¶ 

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Edit Step 25  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the LCD backlight from the inverter by pulling its connector away from the inverter board.

Edit Step 26  ¶ 

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Edit Step 26  ¶ 

  • Be cautious to not put any strain on the inverter cable ground loop, as it is a very thin and delicate wire.

  • Disconnect the inverter cable by pulling its connector away from the socket on the inverter.

Edit Step 27 Clutch Assembly  ¶ 

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Edit Step 27 Clutch Assembly  ¶ 

  • Remove the pieces of yellow kapton tape from the bottom left corner of the display.

  • Peel the three green antenna ground straps off the copper tape along the bottom edge of the LCD.

    • The adhesive connecting these straps to the display is very strong. An edged tool is helpful to separate the adhesive while you peel the straps off.

  • Remove the piece of tape securing the camera cable to the LCD.

Edit Step 28  ¶ 

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Edit Step 28  ¶ 

  • Remove the pieces of tape covering the display data cable and camera cable connectors.

  • Carefully peel the camera cable off the foam tape along the top edge of the LCD.

Edit Step 29  ¶ 

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Edit Step 29  ¶ 

  • Gently pull the camera cable away from its socket on the camera board.

  • Pull the display data cable connector away from its socket on the LCD.

  • Pull both cables parallel to the face of the logic board.

Edit Step 30  ¶ 

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Edit Step 30  ¶ 

  • If you have a Core Duo machine, refer to picture 1 and remove three Phillips screws connecting the clutch assembly to the lower edge of the front display bezel near the display data cable.

  • If you have a Core 2 Duo Model A1211 machine, refer to picture 2 and remove two Phillips screws connecting the clutch assembly to the lower edge of the front display bezel near the display data cable.

Edit Step 31  ¶ 

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Edit Step 31  ¶ 

  • Remove the small Phillips screw from behind the display data cable.

  • Remove the small rectangular steel bracket by sliding it away from the right clutch hinge.

    • If you have a Core 2 Duo Model A1211, there is no steel bracket. Simply remove the screw and continue to the next step.

Edit Step 32  ¶ 

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Edit Step 32  ¶ 

  • Remove three Phillips screws attaching the clutch assembly to the lower edge of the front display bezel.

  • The inverter cable ground loop is a very thin and delicate wire. Work gently.

Edit Step 33  ¶ 

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Edit Step 33  ¶ 

  • Push the open edge of the clutch cover away from the left clutch hinge to pop it off the clips attaching the two parts.

  • If necessary, repeat this process for the right side of the clutch assembly.

  • Remove the clutch assembly from the front display bezel.

Edit Step 34 Display Data Cable  ¶ 

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Edit Step 34 Display Data Cable  ¶ 

  • De-route the display data cable from around the right clutch hinge and remove it from the front bezel.

Edit Step 35 Right Clutch Hinge  ¶ 

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Edit Step 35 Right Clutch Hinge  ¶ 

  • Remove the four T6 Torx screws securing the right clutch hinge to the front display bezel.

Edit Step 36  ¶ 

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Edit Step 36  ¶ 

  • Remove the right clutch hinge from the front display bezel.

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

For more information, check out the MacBook Pro 15" Core 2 Duo Model A1211 device page.

Required Tools

Spudger

$2.95 · 50+ In stock

T6 Torx Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

T6 Torx Screwdriver

$9.95 · 17 In stock

Phillips #00 Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

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Comments Comments are onturn off

Tip for new players - print this guide, then use Sello tape to tape the screws from each step on the picture. Keeps them all organised and easy to know which screws belong to which step when putting it all back together

MPB Monkey, · Reply

Thanks a lot for this great advice. I followed it, and it turned out to be very useful and practical.

Ralf Bergs,

Quote from MPB Monkey:

"...Tip for new players - print this guide, then use Sello tape..."

It's one word: Sellotape, the biggest brand in Europe. :-)

matthk, · Reply

In regard to the incredible amount of TINY screws, get an Ice Cube Tray or something with AT LEAST 8 compartments, then, when taking out the screws, mark EACH compartment with the step # and how many screws that were taken out, and used for THAT STEP (such as Step # 3 = 4 of 4 screws. Label EACH compartment, and keep them in line of each step. When it comes time to put everything back together, just reverse your Ice Cube Tray, and follow the Steps in Reverse!

As far as marking each compartment, try these POST IT PENS!!!

http://www.staples.com/Post-it-Flag-Ball...

GOOD LUCK! Take your time, it's not as difficult as it seems!

JerseyJeepGurl

JerseyJeepGurl, · Reply

This guide helped me to remove the keyboard on my MBP, but it doesn't take you further to take the keyboard apart. If you REALLY want to look inside the keyboard, you'll need to remove additional phillips screws (10), and carefully remove the inner plastic/clear layers inside the keyboard.

I did this to look for physical damage inside the keyboard and noticed that the black plastic? sheet was torn on my letter 'v', which was one of the keys not working. I did not see any physical sign anywhere else on the keyboard, though.

So, after pulling the defective keyboard away and installing the new one purchased from iFixit, putting everything back together is not too difficult, just reverse.

One thing, though: Check and double-check before you tighten the case screws to make sure your keyboard backlight is working. I noticed I had forgotten to plug it in, luckily for me before I put all the screws on the case.

To avoid losing any screws, print this guide and use clear tape to tape the screws next to the step. Use double-tape to avoid tearing or one of the tiny screws from falling out.

Good luck!

Thanks iFixit for helping me replace my MBP's keyboard!

juanortuno, · Reply

Thank you for some excellent advice form JerseyJeep Gurl

Quote from SubodhJ:

SubodhJ, · Reply

Worked perfect on my 4,1 mbp. Took ~15 min.

I don't see a boost in speed... or is just me?

I used 500 GB 7200 RPM Seagate SATA Hard Drive model ST9500420AS.

(if has a G letter at the end (ASG) is the one with built in shock protection who conflict sometimes with the mac own G protection).

kriss13, · Reply

This guide was awesome. I used JerseyJeepGurl's suggestion and used an egg carton, numbering each cavity as a step in the guide. So for a step that had me remove 3 different kinds of screws, I had a cavity for each, numbered: 1a, 1b, 1c and wrote a,b,c on the guide itself next to each bullet point in the step. It was awesome.

I guess that before starting I overlooked what a T6 torx actually was. I started this process at 8pm and realized right away that I did not have a set that small and of course all stores were closing. Lowes actually had an awesome fine torx driver set for only 7 bucks!

So that you fixit.

tech4eleven, · Reply

Quote from tech4eleven:

This guide was awesome. I used JerseyJeepGurl's suggestion and used an egg carton, numbering each cavity as a step in the guide. So for a step that had me remove 3 different kinds of screws, I had a cavity for each, numbered: 1a, 1b, 1c and wrote a,b,c on the guide itself next to each bullet point in the step. It was awesome.

I guess that before starting I overlooked what a T6 torx actually was. I started this process at 8pm and realized right away that I did not have a set that small and of course all stores were closing. Lowes actually had an awesome fine torx driver set for only 7 bucks!

So that you fixit.

Thank you everybody for "thanking me" on the compartment advice! Also, just about ANY Auto parts store will have a set of Torx Screw drivers, in a handy little set, that is all together. Good luck everybody,,remember,TAKE YOUR TIME, BREATH, AND DON'T GET FRUSTRATED!!! (STEALING ADVICE FROM PEARL JAM,,BREATH,JUST BREATH),,,,AND YOU'LL BE ABLE TO DO IT YOURSELF!

JJG

JerseyJeepGurl, · Reply

Quote from JerseyJeepGurl:

In regard to the incredible amount of TINY screws, get an Ice Cube Tray or something with AT LEAST 8 compartments, then, when taking out the screws, mark EACH compartment with the step # and how many screws that were taken out, and used for THAT STEP (such as Step # 3 = 4 of 4 screws. Label EACH compartment, and keep them in line of each step. When it comes time to put everything back together, just reverse your Ice Cube Tray, and follow the Steps in Reverse!

As far as marking each compartment, try these POST IT PENS!!!

http://www.staples.com/Post-it-Flag-Ball...

GOOD LUCK! Take your time, it's not as difficult as it seems!

JerseyJeepGurl

Michael Fredrickson, · Reply

Quote from Michael Fredrickson:

I get a piece of "corrugated" cardboard and draw an outline of the laptop and all the "compartments" that are accessed. When you take a screw out simply punch it threw top layer of the cardboard exactly where it goes. Multiple compartments - just draw another diagram on the cardboard. Voila!

Michael Fredrickson, · Reply

I just finished replacing my hard drive following these instructions and they were perfect. The only minor complication involved the ribbon cable connecting to the sleep light and IR sensor connectors. The entire cable was tightly glued to the hard drive. But I got it loose with 10 minutes of gentle prying with a spudger.

To keep track of the screws I just sketched an outline of the bottom panel, taped the screws in the right places and numbered them with the step numbers.

Tom McAuliffe, · Reply

I just used that Glad Press' N Seal. I just cut a 4 in piece, cut slits in it to about half way, Put the screws on there, and fold the pieces over the screws. You can number them, i just kept track of them. Also, you might not need that much, i just cut that much just to be safe.

benchallinor27, · Reply

I use magnet

I use the magnet that close the refigerator door.

The screws are put on the magnet, so it didnot fall from the table.

i am french so sorry for my english

Madoc,

Just another idea for a container for all the little screws: pillbox. I got one for about $1.00 at the store with 14 compartments.

Brian Littmann, · Reply

"port side of the computer" should read "starboard side". It's on the right-hand side when the computer is positioned normally in front of you.

joeycoole, · Reply

Port side as in I/O port side, as in the side that has the FireWire and ethernet ports. This is a MacBook, not a sailboat ;)

Andrew Bookholt,

Maybe I'm too used to running flight simulators on my Macs. But to us sailors or pilots, it would perhaps be clearer if the instructions mentioned "I/O port side" as Andrew did above.

Honestly, it never crossed my mind that 'port' refered to in/out…

joeycoole,

In my machine the screw closest to the power connector had a slightly thicker head, and would not sit flush, upon reassembly, unless it was returned to the same hole.

Martin Kenny, · Reply

Be super careful not to bend the metal tabs that hook the upper case into the lower case. If bent these make it challenging to close and reattach the upper case.

lama, · Reply

I had already done this once and now have a larger SSD to put in and cannot get past this step as the back just will not pop off. In fact- the front comes off fine but the back, where you cannot get the spudger, is "glued" or wedged solid. I suspect that the rear screw tabs have jammed. :(

Stefanie, · Reply

Kudos for this fantastic walk-through of replacing the hard drive. I just swapped in a new SSD and it was a piece of cake!

On Step 10, I tried just propping up the keyboard and leaving it connected to the logic board. It worked for a while but eventually the ribbon popped off. Luckily it wasn't damaged and it's super easy to replace.

DJR, · Reply

Same happened to me. No damage here either. :-)

Ralf Bergs,

The screw fixing points on my MBP came away from the back case. They are spot welded to the back case and in the Photo's I have you can see the point's each. You may think that if this happens you lose the ability to use the screws to secure the enclosure but you still can use the screws if you position the fixing points before clipping the front panel in place. Have a needle of small nail to align though the holes before replacing the screws. This is not easy and you need to be practices at this sort of repair.

They sit under the plastic surround and do! add the the string of the completed enclosure.

substevew, · Reply

The replacement antenna I just bought has all the adhesive cleaned off of the green ground straps. What do I use to glue them back on?

Aaron, · Reply

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