Repairing a Wii Drive and replacing the thermal pads

I bought a broken Wii from a garage sale for cheap, included everything and 4 controllers, score! I decided to try and fix it and maybe play it in the future. I really like mario kart 64 and I hear the Wii version is very similar 🙂

Right off the bat i doesn’t read any CD’s so I looked online, replacement drives are ~20 and are mostly “refurbished” so they take old drives and replace the lens and motherboard. But it gets confusing as far as what lenses are compatible with what dvd motherboards. After a day of searching I decided to not spend a lot of money and replaced the lens myself which surprisingly was easy (if careful). I found the great video below on how to do it. Unlike the video my wii lens was showing a red light, but it wouldn’t read anything so I took a chance replacing it. and it worked!

Wanting to continue messing with the Wii internals I disassembled it and bought some 1.5mm thermal pads off ebay which fit perfectly on top of the cpu, gpu and wifi chip for better cooling. I used the video below which was super helpful. Not sure why Nintendo put like 1k screws in this console :/ and some triwing screws

After doing some research, I did come across the face that there are two type of lenses the RAF-3350 and RAF-3355. From what I read on a comment on amazon, older consoles used the 3350 and were not compatible with Gamecube games. Newer Wii’s with gamecube compatibility used the 3355 version of the lens. So get the correct one!