Replace the DC Plug on an Apple IBook Silver "yo-yo" Power Adapter.





Introduction: Replace the DC Plug on an Apple IBook Silver "yo-yo" Power Adapter.

There are a couple other instructables on how to repair the DC connector and how to repair the cord near the power supply.

My problem was a little different than either of theirs. I had repaired the connector in the past -- the cord frayed and shorted right near the DC connector (the part that goes into the computer) so I spliced it and tried making a better strain relief. That lasted for a couple years but it broke again so I figured I'd try and replace the connector entirely.

Step 1: Disassemble the Old Connector

Since Apple can change their minds anytime, I recommend that everyone disassemble their existing connector to decipher how the power supply connects. Mine is a "yo-yo" or "saucer" supply #M7332 that came with the Indigo "Clamshell" iBooks.

I used hot-glue as a strain relief in my last repair so I used a heat gun to get the glue off. I don't remember how the connector came apart originally, but the gist was to cut off the plastic shell then pry apart the metal shell. These are the pieces I came up with.

Step 2: Selecting the Replacement Connector

The connector is clearly a 1/8" stereo headphone plug with a custom metal shell around it. I bought a replacement plug but it didn't look like it would be easy to fit it inside the metal shell.

I decided to hedge a bet and just install the replacement jack without the original metal outer shell.

Although the outer shell was connected to the middle-ring and to the wire shield, I guessed that the shell itself was not connected for supplying power. I would have to take apart the iBook to find out for sure, but for the time being I just assumed it wasn't connected. If the resulting repair failed to get the iBook powered, then I could assume I was mistaken.

Step 3: Prepare the Wire

Now that the plan was established, I started wiring up the new connector. The first step was to cut the cord and prepare the cut end to be soldered. Check out the other pictures for details on how to strip shielded wire.

First, remove about a half-inch of outer insulation without damaging the wire braid. I find that if I use a sharp blade with light pressure against the wire, I can gently roll it along the blade and it will cut nicely. If it isn't obvious, it's easy to cut your thumb, so take your time and be careful.

Next, to separate the braided insulation, I use a pick to comb out the wires. Some electronic shops sell them as dental picks -- it's a handy tool to have. Once the wires are fanned out, I pull them to one side and twist them together.

Usually I'd leave a long tail on the twisted braid, but since I'd be connecting it "backward" (the braid connects to the inner-ring and the center-conductor connects to the shell/ground) I cut it short and tinned the ends.

Step 4: Solder on the New Connector

Next is to solder on the new connector. First, heat the tabs to connect with the soldering iron and tin on a blob of solder to each. For the connector shield, put a blob on the strain-relief bar. I found it easier to kink the center conductor and solder it first to the strain relief bar. Once I did that, the short stub of braid was nearly in place to connect to the middle-ring connector.

Step 5: The Moment of Truth

Check your work at this point and make sure nothing is shorted out -- or will short out when you assemble the connector housing. (Hopefully you didn't skip the part about putting the shell on the wire before soldering and can now assemble it.) On my connector there were bendable strain-relief tabs. Bend them gently over the insulation -- unlike 99% of times wiring a headphone jack, this time you don't want the braided shield to connect to the strain relief or it will short out the power supply.

Once everything was done, it was time to try plugging it in. As indicated by the orange glow, it appears to have worked!



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    You can replace the plug connector on the YoYo power supply with a Radio Shack #274-0298, a 3/32" Submini phone plug.  The center wire in the +24 power cable is +24, the shielding is ground. 

    If you call the 3 segments of the new plug A, B, and C starting at the tip, you connect the ground ti the B section, and the +24 to the C section. 

    It was easiest for me to solder two wires to the B and C contacts on the plug, and then connect those new 2" wires to the +24V center and to the ground shielding.  A little heat shrink tubing and electrical tape finished the job.

    Not pretty, but it works and only cost $2.99 for the connector plug.

    Interesting.... I went to my local Radio Schmuck and got a 1/8" stereo phone plug (part #274-1547), and it's too fat to fit in the DC-in port on my iBook (dual USB). Does anyone have an idea what's the correct one?

    3 replies

    Ok, for those of you with an IBook dual USB, it's probably a 3/32 stereo plug. (dang, I hate replying to my own questions!) Of course the local store didn't have one, so I'm making do with a 1/8 and an adapter. Still cheaper than a new yoyo.

    Just make sure to check the polarities and voltages and let us know.

    Exactly how do you check the polarities and voltages? I repaired the plug on my power cord and am afraid to plug it in. Thank you!


    Is the centre conductor wire the positive and the wire-mesh screen/shield the negative please?

    Thanks. It's my first Instructable. I needed to make the repair so I figured I'd pull out the camera and give it a whirl.

    3 replies

    Is there any place I can buy just he dc plug? The part that plugs into my computer? My shield is flared and plug is bent---stupid dog!

    some used the standard barrel plug

    I didn't look too hard, but I didn't think there was a place to do so. It seems that it's a high-volume mold-once-in-plastic-and-forget-it kind of thing, so a version with solder connections and end-user assemble ability is unlikely.

    Since it doesn't have the plastic "nub" on the connector end, how do you get that standard black "headphone connector" on it ?

    Make sure you add the metal shield. I have heard of people plugging these into their audio out and burning the whole thing

    The normal terms are "tip", "ring", and "sleeve".


    thx !!! one more guestion :) if this arrow cable---|A|B|C> is a a plug (jack 3,5) and A B C are the names of segments of plug, then white wire is connected to A segment, but shield is connected to B or C ?

    1 reply

    The shield gets connected to segment B. The tip (segment C) is not connected -- presumably this is so you could touch the shell of the original connector to the tip with some metal (by accident or deliberately) and not short-out the power supply.


    is white wire 24V (+) and silver 0V (gnd) ?

    1 reply

    On the power supply I have the white center-conductor is +24V and the shield is 0V.

    Is it all right for the metal barrel to touch the body of the connector? And if so, Wouldn't that carry a positive charge? (Seems odd)

    2 replies

    If I slipped the replacement plug inside the metal barrel, the large flange on it would probably make contact with the barrel. This would short out the power supply. I thought that it was a bit peculiar and with no apparent advantage: if you stick a piece of wire into the original connector, you can short it to the metal barrel; this would be true whether the barrel was connected to the plug' "ring" or to any of the tip conductors. The smartest policy (for the original design) would have been to leave the metal barrel not connected, just like the plug tip.

    So you just insulated the metal plug's body so it wouldn't make contact?