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I've installed an SSD as my main drive, and installed an HDD in the optical bay with a caddy, however I would like to blank the optical bay with an aluminium panel or something which I would assume could just be pushed into the slot.

I can't find anything by searching for a blanking plate, so just wondering if they even exist?

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3 Answers 3

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I will not recommend you do this since it will degrade your wireless performance. The WiFi and bluetooth antennas are located just off the DVD slot to allow more signal to come out. Remember the MBP is a metal cage and wireless signals need a way to come out.

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PS: I am a wireless engineer and also replaced the optical bay with an HDD. I wanted to do the same as you but after discovering this I changed my mind. –  grazij Aug 25 '12 at 22:05
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Wouldn't plastic be OK? It probably doesn't need to be as physically strong as the rest of the case. –  Ken Aug 25 '12 at 22:37
    
In most cases plastic should be fine. I just recommend that if you find a solution to measure your wifi performance before and after. There are some plastics that contain a lot of carbon and will have a negative effect on the signal. –  grazij Aug 26 '12 at 0:38
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I thought plastics were generally hydrocarbon polymers, and thus consisted almost entirely of carbon? :-) –  Ken Aug 26 '12 at 3:44
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From Gizmodo: gizmodo.com/5518630/… "and a different location for the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth board means wireless should theoretically be improved, as they've now been able to add an extra antenna to the optical drive opening." –  grazij Aug 26 '12 at 13:39

I have never see anything that covers the area where the slot is, so cannot really help with your query specifically, although I did spend a long time researching the whole caddy thing when I did the same to my iMac, and I've never found anything.

However, I would advise you to blank it off from the inside, with some electrical tape or other, to prevent dust ingress through the slot.

Any external blanking plate, (presumably to remove the temptation for someone to try to use the slot left behind?) is going to be more unsightly that the slot, in my opinion, unless it is perfectly machined out of the same aluminium as your laptop. I'd be happy to ensure that the opening is secured from dust, and not worry about the aesthetics of a pointless hole, because the alternatives will almost certainly stand out more.

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The caddy has a plastic edge which is pressed tightly against the slot already, so if anything, there's less chance of dust getting in that there was with the original superdrive installed. –  AlanJC Jul 5 '12 at 15:34

Why not just measure the width and height, and get an aluminum part (or plastic, if you prefer) custom made.

This company make custom parts, for example: http://www.customlasercutting.com

It sounds like an easy template to create in a vector-art application. Still, if you have an accurate scanner, you could even turn your MacBook on its side, scan it, and trace the shape of the slot.

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