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Old 10-09-2008, 12:33 PM   #1
SHENGTON
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Cleaning a memory using an eraser will fry the RAM chips?


Hi LQ experts, good day.

Every time I had a customer and if the problem is in the memory. I used to clean it with eraser, and viola, the computer will had a display again.

Questions:
1. Someone told me that rubbing an eraser to the memory contacts can fry the chips of memory module?
2. It's because rubbing an eraser across the connectors will produce a LOT of static electricity?

Do you think those are true?

Honestly I'm a bit doubt with his statement when he told that to me. I've already search in Google and found nothing that his statements are true.

Could someone tell me that his statements are true?

Thanks and God bless.

Last edited by SHENGTON; 10-09-2008 at 01:19 PM.
 
Old 10-09-2008, 01:20 PM   #2
H_TeXMeX_H
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I don't think it could generate static. Instead the only danger I see if you press too hard you may break off the tabs, but technically that's not likely either with a soft eraser. So really I don't see much danger in it. I never tried it tho, this is the first time I heard of such a thing. Sounds like it might not be such a bad idea.
 
Old 10-09-2008, 01:57 PM   #3
mostlyharmless
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I would be surprised if it were to be a problem, as it used to be commonly recommended for contacts not only on memory, but also bus cards and any other connectors large enough to use it on.
 
Old 10-09-2008, 03:39 PM   #4
farslayer
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yeah, we did that for years on older equipment for ISA and PCI cards, and I've done it on memory modules as well. was never an issue. Just remember to ground yourself before removing the modules from the system. Used to be able to do that by touching the Computer case prior to the ATX power supplies.

I can't say that I've ever gotten a static shock from a soft pink rubber eraser before since rubber is an insulator. that' why you wear thick rubber soled shoes when working with electricity.

vinyl or plastic erasers may be a different story, they will be more firm or hard, I would not use that type of eraser for cleaning contacts.
 
Old 10-09-2008, 06:01 PM   #5
LinuxCrayon
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AFAIK, the only currently recommended way to clean contacts is with a soft cloth and small amount of alcohol.
 
Old 10-09-2008, 08:40 PM   #6
farslayer
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Technically Electrical Contact cleaner would be the most appropriate.
http://www.chemtronics.com/products/...degreasers.asp
http://www.cpcares.com/TAE/puretronics/TAE-3800.html

I hesitate to recommend alcohol since the first thing most people think of is the bottle of rubbing alcohol in the medicine chest.. that is NOT pure alcohol and should never be used to clean electronics with, it contains water, and sometimes coloring or fragrance you certainly don't want all that on your electronics.

Most people don't have 99.9% pure isopropyl alcohol on hand and don't know to look for it when they are purchasing. It does make a good cleaner if you get the right one..
 
Old 10-09-2008, 08:48 PM   #7
LinuxCrayon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by farslayer View Post
I hesitate to recommend alcohol since the first thing most people think of is the bottle of rubbing alcohol in the medicine chest.. that is NOT pure alcohol and should never be used to clean electronics with, it contains water, and sometimes coloring or fragrance you certainly don't want all that on your electronics.

Most people don't have 99.9% pure isopropyl alcohol on hand and don't know to look for it when they are purchasing. It does make a good cleaner if you get the right one..
Good point. I didn't even think about the fact that most people aren't aware of the differences.

Still, I would recommend it to someone who knew what they were doing, what to look for, and what the differences are. Of course, if that were the case, he/she would probably already know...
 
Old 10-09-2008, 09:17 PM   #8
Quakeboy02
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Neither alcohol nor contact cleaner nor flux remover will remove corrosion from the terminals on a memory module. (And don't tell me gold doesn't corrode. It's not 24kt gold.) Erasers do it all just fine and generally with only a very remote possibility of damage. Don't over-think a simple problem.
 
Old 10-09-2008, 10:13 PM   #9
LinuxCrayon
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I've never had to deal with corrosion in PC components, thankfully. Do erasers really remove corrosion?
 
Old 10-09-2008, 10:19 PM   #10
Quakeboy02
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LinuxCrayon View Post
I've never had to deal with corrosion in PC components, thankfully. Do erasers really remove corrosion?
An eraser is as a mildly abrasive material. Of course it's gonna remove corrosion. Techs have been using them on cards since computers first had cards. I first used them in the 70s when I worked at Burroughs as a field technician.

Fortunately, the experiment with solder coated (tinned) memory board connectors is over and they've pretty much gone back to gold, which is much more resistant to corrosion.
 
Old 10-09-2008, 10:34 PM   #11
LinuxCrayon
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Ah. Well, I'm fairly new to the game, and I had never heard of anyone (tech or otherwise) using an eraser on components.

That's actually pretty cool. Thanks for the info, Quakeboy02!
 
Old 10-10-2008, 11:23 PM   #12
SHENGTON
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Thanks guys for your replies. I really appreciate your help.
 
Old 10-11-2008, 05:19 PM   #13
lwasserm
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A new, clean dollar bill works pretty well also, as will other denominations should you be fortunate enough to have some.
 
Old 10-12-2008, 03:30 PM   #14
pinballwizard66
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a lot of useful info here, and i have to agree with everyone that you wont get any static ele. by using a rubber eraser.

Debian Development

Last edited by pinballwizard66; 10-22-2008 at 12:35 PM.
 
Old 10-12-2008, 04:50 PM   #15
onebuck
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Hi,

I've been in Computer/Electronics for years, more than I wish to admit.

The use of a eraser to clean contacts can cause you problems in the long run. Sure the abrasion of the eraser will clean the contact but the oil left by most erasers will not be beneficial. The abrasion of the eraser contact will wear the contact material(gold). Tin contacts were not a problem, they just needed cleaning all the time.

Most good electronics people will not use a eraser to clean any contact be it for a card edge or connector. Instead good clean 20# paper (typing paper) has enough rag in it to help clean a contact if you use denatured alcohol. The wet strip of paper (cut in 1 inch wide by 2 inch) folded in half then wipe in one direction over the card edge. One piece per wipe. Don't reuse any used paper. Chromelin-R is a good edge connector wet solution that will keep the contacts free from corrosion. If you have a edge connector that needs cleaning then fold the paper over a plastic card (old credit cards) then push in the connector to wipe the contacts (again one wipe per paper).

I've done it this way for years with great results!
 
  


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