K2 BUILDER ALERT #15
Diagonal black lines on K2 LCD display, Removal of LCD rear protective film.
6/7/01


Applicability: This most likely appears on K2 kits S/N 2100 through S/N 2138. 

Symptom: 

Your K2 LCD numeric display (part of the front panel kit) shows a series of faint diagonal black lines when the backlight is on, or (hopefully) when you inspect the rear of the display prior to installation.

Not all kits in this S/N range will have this film with the diagonal lines. All K2s S/N 2139 and later will have the rear LCD protective film removed at the factory. If you have a K2 in the serial number range just prior to 2100 with these lines please notify support@elecraft.com immediately.

This one caught us off guard - Again! Our manufacturer of LCD displays once again has decided to add a new protective film to the rear of the K2 LCD display without telling us. This film has a series of black diagonal lines printed on it. About 50% of the displays we inspected this morning had the extra film and diagonal lines. (When we caught this a year ago they promised us it would never happen again...)


Corrective Action:
If the diagonal black lines are present, peel off the thin, flexible, plastic film from the rear of the LCD display, BUT BE CAREFUL NOT TO REMOVE THE SILVER TRANSFLECTIVE BACKING underneath it. Rather than trying to lift it at the corner (which can also catch the silver transflective backing by mistake) we find it is easier to scratch at it with a finger nail near a corner until it pulls up. An alternate method that works well is to press a fresh piece of masking tape against the rear of the LCD at one end (just folding it over the edge of the display to catch the edge of the film) and then to pull it quickly away from the surface, pulling the film with it. Sometimes this takes two or three repetitions but it cleanly starts removing the film without the risk of damaging the silver backing of the LCD. (This film is similar the slightly spongy thin protective film on the front of the LCD and both films are similar to those used to protect the displays of most consumer electronics items during shipment.)

Note: If you don't see the diagonal black lines on the rear of your LCD, you don't need to remove the protective film. Even if it is still there, it won't impact the display unless the lines are visible. 

If the LCD display is already installed, you will need to carefully unsolder the six front leads of the display and tilt it up from the board to get at this film. If you are uncomfortable doing this, please don't try it. Instead, you can send us your front panel for re-work (We will turn it around and return it post paid in one day.) We will send you a replacement LCD display if you damage the old one. Email support@elecraft.com, or call us at 831-662-8345 to get return
authorization or a new display. 

Also, as noted in the K2 manual, there is also a thin clear plastic film protecting the FRONT of the LCD during shipping. It typically has several thin yellow diagonal lines on it. It should also be removed in a similar manner as per the instructions in the manual.