A quick inspection of the unit had shown me where to start but I had also found and downloaded a copy of the Acer Aspire R3610 Service Guide which I hoped would make life easy. Going straight to page 26 took me right back to the mid 1970s when I used to do odd bits of work on my car with the aid of the appropriate Haynes manual.....
Removing the Side Panel
- Put the Computer on the worktable lightly.
- Release side cover with 1 screws then remove side cover.
Needless to say that having removed the screw nothing happens - the side panel is still firmly fixed in place, held there by various hidden fixings. So it was back to my usual 'brute force and ignorance' approach.
A quick glance around the unit reveals a label sitting in the depression where a foot attaches. The wording Read the Warranty Conditions before breaking the seal is a dead giveaway that the route in is lying beneath the seal.
Scrape the seal away to reveal a screw head and then remove the screw.
As noted above you will find that nothing has changed. The side panel is still very firmly in place.
At this point I dug out one of those plastic tools that you get in the kits for dismantling iPhones, iPods and the like. You can obviously use a flat bladed screwdriver or similar but the plastic tool is less likely to mark the housing.
I started levering in the slot above the screw. To the left behind the grating you can see one of the (many) plastic clips that is holding the cover on.
I worked on round the corner as far as the eSATA socket....
..before moving round to the other side.
To cut a long story short eventually the cover was free.
Just so as you know what you are dealing with here's a picture of the inside of the cover.
The photo below shows the two types of clip - a 'square' that clips over a protrusion within the case, and a clip that lodges in a depression in the case. With this example, once I got it apart, I noticed that one of the 'squares' was now broken (right-hand photo). I don't know the optimum way to remove the cover to avoid damage like this. (it's the sort of useful information I would hope to find in the service manual).
Finally, to help you with your struggle, the photo below shows where the two types of hidden fixings are in the hope this may lessen the damage when you try and take yours apart.
Any further disassembly is straight forward. You need to remove the circuit board should you want to change or remove the hard drive.
Any comments? email me. Added December 2018