E-P5 Skipping Dial -- has anyone replaced the top plate DIY?

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I haven't used my E-P5 in quite a while, but I have a work trip to New Orleans next week and was thinking I might pack the E-P5 and a few primes for a small travel kit. So, I pulled out the E-P5 and played around with it and noticed that the back wheel is skipping. Of course, a quick Google search revealed that this is a common problem, including a few threads here that discussed using contact cleaner to get the dial working again, and suggesting that Olympus might repair out-of-warranty cameras free of charge.

Those threads are old enough that i'm thinking Olympus will probably not fix my 4 year old E-P5 (Dec, 2015). I will probably try the contact cleaner approach, along with simply exercising the switch with repeated turning. However, I also notice that I can buy the top plate assembly at AliExpress for around $40. I wonder if these were parts that were made to fix the dial issue, or parts that were trashed BECAUSE of the dial issue.

Anyone have any experience replacing the top cover?
 

ADemuth

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I've not replaced the top, but (I think) I was fairly close to it when I replaced the articulated screen. It's a job, to be sure. Make sure you have a good quality set of Philips head jewellers screwdrivers - (these aren't actually the right screwdrivers, but I don't know what the correct head is, and didn't have access to them even if I did know, but it worked, just been aware that you have a higher chance of stripping the heads out with jeweler's screwdrivers). You'll also need a spudger to disengage/engage the ZIF connections, a magnet to pull screws from their holes, and an ESD strap. Go in organized, lock up the cats and be ready to spend an entire afternoon on it. I'd guess there were 60+ screws to locate and catalog, and that was before I got into the screen. I used a smart phone and an app that let me annotate the photos. I snapped the panel I was working on, removed the screws and put them in individually numbered commitments, then annotated the photo with the number by the screw.

I also hit up my wheels with deoxit (front wheel was skipping) and it helped, now I only have one "click" that won't register).

Word of warning: the IBIS mechanism is very magnetic and will suck screws deep into the body if you're not careful. This threat is most imminent when you're working on the bottom of the camera once the bottom exterior plate is removed.


Edit - I changed the screen flex cable, not the screen. Just the screen is pretty simple and there's an iFixIt write up on it. The flex cable is not so easy.
 
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djtaylor7

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I did the top plate on a E-PL5 and that was not too bad, and agree with ADemuth that care is needed. I have a silver E-P5 which needs a new shutter button, and this effectively means a new top plate. When I asked an Olympus repairer last year the black top plate was still available from Olympus, but not silver, so imagine spares are becoming scarce.
 
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Hmmm.. doesn't sound like fun. I've got the tools, but not the motivation to spend the time and effort. I'll probably give the contact cleaner a try and use it for as long as I can.

To David's post, I did notice that while the AliExpress listing showed photos of black and silver top covers, the choices were black and white. I was hoping the "white" was a misprint but perhaps they really are white top covers (I know they did make the E-P5 in white) and silver is unavailable.
 

djtaylor7

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Thanks for that. For info a genuine E-P5 top plate from Luton Cameras in the UK would have been GBP 200. The spray with contact cleaner is probably the best solution.
 

ADemuth

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Hmmm.. doesn't sound like fun. I've got the tools, but not the motivation to spend the time and effort. I'll probably give the contact cleaner a try and use it for as long as I can.
If I recall correctly, the dials are fairly well segregated from the rest of the camera, and certainly the optics. I wouldn't go spraying all willy-nilly, but don't worry too much about ruining anything.

@djtaylor7 thanks for the heads up on supplies running low, I'll probably pick up a top plate from AliExpress while they are still around, even if my E-P5 is slated to be a dedicated film scanner soon.
 
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