modding:heatsink [TheDroidYouAreLookingFor]

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2020/03/30 13:09 · xanathon

Installing a heatsink

… and general overheating advice

Some Vectors are reported to get quite hot and overheat, recognizable by a thermometer symbol shown in the display. The safe operation temperature for a Vector is up to max 30 degrees Celsius, above that Vector will overheat way more frequently. It is possible to install heatsinks on the processor to get that better, but there are things to try first:

  • try to remove the two golden head-sideplates (be careful, but they are only snapped-in, you should be able to remove them easily with your fingernails, I would not recommend trying to use a screwdriver as you may damage something). It looks ugly, but the holes that hold those plates allow for some ventilation.
  • deactivate Alexa functions in the Vector companion app. Alexa functions are highly intensive on computational resources and lead to more temperature. Also they drain the battery far faster than operating without them.
  • position a small fan at his charger base, cooling him down.

To the right you can see the main CPU unit inside Vectors head (click to enlarge). There is some sticky rubber glued onto the CPU (in the middle) and the element beside it, in my opinion the RAM, both marked with a red frame. There should be enough space to install some kind of headsink there, reducing the overheating problems.

Caution: read the whole process before starting anything.


I looked for feasible heatsinks and did find ones that are made of aluminum and are 9 x 9 x 5 mm (see image, click to enlarge). However, 5 mm is too thick, so I took out my trusty Dremel and dremeld the thickness down to 3 mm (since the material is aluminum, this can be done quite fast, I did it in under ten minutes, just be careful to get a good hold of the heatsink with an engineers pliers or a small jaw vise). This downdremeling is nesseccary, since we need to get the heatsink out of the way of the head axis, so the head is still able to move. If you want to be on the safe side, dremel it down to 2.5 mm. Make sure to clean away any kind of aluminum powder residue that was created when shortening the heat sink lamellas.

Another option is to just saw a 9 x 9 mm part out of a copper or aluminum plate that you have lying around and that has a thickness of less than 3 mm.

You should test if there is enough space by partially reinstalling the head to the body to see if it is still able to move, before glueing the heatsink to the processor.


For the glue you will need one that is able to conduct heat, but is an electrical and capacitive insulator. Those are used in computers for similar things. I already had such a cement from another project. I use Arctic Alumina two-component glue (made from aluminum oxide and bornitride). Be aware that this is someting else than the thermal heatsink paste used on computer processors, that one just is a paste and not a glue. The Arctic Alumina will create a permanent connection, that means you cannot remove the heat sink ever again. Make sure everything fits.

So mix a minuscule amount of the two glue components and put the resulting glue either on the upside of the processor or on the lower side of the heatsink, then place the heatsink on the processor to let the glue harden, that takes about five Minutes, give it ten to be sure.

That's it. Reassemble you Vector. You can check the CPU temperatures via the Customer Care Info Screen, what you see there depends on your environment temperature, but you will see around ten degrees Celsius lower temps on the head.


Additional Images

This is Vector's mainboard. In the middle (with the red frame) you can see main processor. To the left of that is the RAM. The heatsink will be glued to the Snapdragon CPU.

Two heatsinks, one unmodified and one dremeld down to 3 mm height.

A view of the half-assembled head with the mainboard inside and the heatsink on the CPU. You should attach the head to the axis and attach the other side of the head to test if it still can be moved easily.

Image of the CPU with glued-on heatsink.

Arctic Alumina two-component heat conductive glue


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modding/heatsink.txt · Last modified: 2020/07/02 09:32 by xanathon