I suspect there is a way. I’ve already broken a GTM (the Land Cruiser got the best of that collision) and what’s broken is the power button. I can tell you it’s a momentary contact button, with three contacts along one side, plus two more on the opposite side near the ends of the switch body; these may supplement grounding of the switch or might be merely supportive of the switch body.
The fateful accident that led to my GTM’s demise squashed the poor thing’s case, breaking it partially open. This also mashed the metal shielding surrounding the GTM’s circuits and broke it loose from several of its mounting feet. This dislodged the switch, but I was able to get it going again by pushing on it creatively to get contact. Remember that the connection made is momentary, not like a toggle that leaves power on when in position. The momentary contact initiates the boot-up, like computers we’re more familiar with.
I tried to solder the shielding back down with little luck. I managed to get the switch tacked down for a brief time, but the rough life it led caught up with it, as the previously massively insulted mounting traces then pulled away from the board despite being gentle with it. At that point, I cut some wires and soldered them in so I could do the switching away from that bruised spot on the board, securing them with a dot of epoxy.
BTW, it needed a charge so I’ve plugged it in and the red lights are on. This hasn’t been an issue since the ahem accident, it’s acted completely normal when charging. Always a good idea to be cautious with any charge circuit, especially under these circumstances, just saying.
I’m hoping it just needed a good rest.
However, I haven’t yet received several guesses at what type of switch it is that I ordered in hope I could replace the squashed switch with one of them and perhaps get it going again. Experimenters should also remember that since this is a hack of a design that has been approved by the FCC, there are probably things that goTenna can’t assist us with and, well, it does void your warranty so why expect any help with that?
But hey, does that stop the dedicated hacker? Not at all, just needs more work and then report back on your findings to the community. So long as you don’t mess with the RF side of things, I think the consumer is on pretty safe ground to hack away at the rest and maybe come up with something that could improve everyone’s experience. People in the HAM community have enough knowledge to do more and stay on safe ground. Others have similar experience and we all take responsibility for what we do when the warranty is tossed aside by the kind of curiosity that’s always driven experimenting in the radio spectrum.
But it does void your warranty.
Just remember whatever you do, the mesh depends on common standards and common courtesy. The goTenna Mesh is a pretty good balance at a hardware/firmware solution when combined with the various software development options available and soon to come. New ideas are great, but they should retain and build on the beauty of flexibility and interoperability already inherent in the device and the networks it now makes possible.