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Unread 01-17-2012, 11:18 AM
makahn64 makahn64 is offline
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SOLUTION: Fixing Stuck Safe Mode on Old CRIO

Hi Gang,

Our old CRIO was stuck in SAFE mode preventing a re-image. If you can see your CRIO with the 2012 Imaging Tool (the one that shows the CRIO and its slots), and no matter what position the SAFEMODE switch is in, it's always "SAFE", then you may have the same problem we did.

The SAFE MODE DIP switch does not appear to be the hardiest of switches and it gets beat on a lot. Especially with leaded pencils, the adjustment tool of choice.

In our case, the switch was shorted closed which is: SAFE MODE. You have 3 options:
1) Send it back to National Instruments and hope to get it back by bag-n-tag.
2) Have a friend in the electronics industry with high-temp de-solder equipment remove the DIP and install a new one or,
3) Hack it.

I hacked it. It took about one hour including re-imaging. The instructions are attached.

THIS WILL VOID YOUR WARRANTY (if you have one)!!!

I do not recommend students doing this unless they are experienced in electronic repairs. You will be cutting a pin on the DIP switch and possibly soldering.

By the way, I forgot to add the step where you verify the cut has been made, but that should be pretty obvious.

Good luck!

Mitch
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File Type: pdf fixcriosafeswitch.pdf (207.4 KB, 46 views)
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Unread 01-17-2012, 11:21 AM
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Re: SOLUTION: Fixing Stuck Safe Mode on Old CRIO

Oh yeah, and OBVIOUSLY (but not in the directions):

REMOVE POWER FROM YOUR CRIO BEFORE DISASSEMBLING!!!!
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Unread 01-17-2012, 02:49 PM
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Re: SOLUTION: Fixing Stuck Safe Mode on Old CRIO

I would contact NI BEFORE you assume that it will take a long time to get a replacement.

Greg McKaskle
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Unread 01-17-2012, 10:05 PM
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Re: SOLUTION: Fixing Stuck Safe Mode on Old CRIO

Fair point. I figured it would be a couple of weeks minimum to do an RMA. We couldn't wait.

Maybe you could post the contact info for the other folks still having the problem?

Mitch
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Unread 01-22-2012, 01:12 AM
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Re: SOLUTION: Fixing Stuck Safe Mode on Old CRIO

Not to turn this into a discussion on de-soldering, but it's not that difficult to remove and replace that DIP switch.

Removing it intact without damaging the PC board is a tough job, but since it's already broken and you're going to cut one pin off anyway, cut all the pins.

Now all you need to de-solder is one pin at a time. Should be much easier. Blow out the holes with that canned air while the solder is hot and you'll be ready to drop the new switch in place and solder it.

Another thing that makes both soldering and de-soldering much easier is liquid flux. Buy a bottle or pen of it and use it. It makes the solder wet much nicer and does wonders with solder wick.

De-soldering isn't done with high heat. It's done with high heat capacity. A tool that is hot enough, but loses it's temperature when applied to the solder joint won't do. It has to have enough heat in reserve to hold it's temperature. This is accomplished by wattage and mass in the tool, not high temperature. Too high of a temperature burns the PC board and lifts traces.

You fixed your problem while you were in a time-crunch. Later when you have more time to fix it right, this might be of help.
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Unread 01-22-2012, 03:17 PM
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Re: SOLUTION: Fixing Stuck Safe Mode on Old CRIO

Last year we had to RMA a cRio, and from first contact to NI to receiving the repaired cRio it was a week. We did send it down overnight.
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