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Archive for September 3rd, 2010

CPU Heatsink Fuzz Redux

A friend donated an old Aptiva with an AMD K6 CPU to my collection. It’s too slow & power-hungry to be useful, so I harvested some useful bits and passed the corpse along to the recyclers.

As fate would have it, I have an upcoming project that needs a cooler, so I popped the fan off the top (it’s rotated a quarter-turn: those tabs lock over the edges of the heatsink) to see what’s inside…

Fuzz in AMD K6 CPU Cooler

Fuzz in AMD K6 CPU Cooler

That accumulation was pretty much invisible from the outside, with most of the fuzz clotted around the periphery of the fan duct. The fan blows downward into the heatsink, which acted (as usual) as a good dust filter.

A bit of vacuum cleaner work and it’ll be just fine.

Memo to Self:

  1. The bottom of the heatsink is a 42×78 mm copper block with the heat pipes soldered into notches. Clearance from the block to the step below the widest part of the fins is 18 mm and the fins are 25 mm above the block surface.
  2. Fan = 12 @ 70 mA. Reasonably quiet.
  3. The small blue heat sensor (at about 8 o’clock in the picture) is upstream of the heatsink and, thus, measures ambient air . It’s essentially open-circuit at room temperature, but a diode test shows 1.4 V in either direction. That suggests it’s not a thermistor or thermocouple, but the CPU is old enough that it’s likely not a fancy IC, either. A puzzlement.
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