Hello everyone, I've been wanting to learn how to solder for years now and this fall, I am going to begin working towards a degree in electronics. I have a Macbook Pro that is a few years old and has quit working (If I'm remembering correctly, it is a 2011 model). I haven't gotten around to recycling it, so I've been hanging on to it for maybe a year. Would it be too difficult for a newbie to take apart the computer, remove the hard drive, smash it to bits, and then desolder and re-solder electrical components from within the computer for practice with soldering? I would consult the video tutorial series on tangentsoft.net while I am doing this. Thank you for your help in this matter.
Removing the hard drive should be trivial. Desoldering SMDs would be a pain in the neck. Forget resoldering them without reflow. Practice on something bigger and easier to work with - there are plenty of "learn to solder" kits out there that are significantly cheaper and easier to get into than SMD reworking.
Remove major components, re-cycle or sell the working ones (display, keyboard, touchpad). If you want to practise desoldering, it might be quite an exercise there (smd stuff is not easy, especially the microscopic size used in computers these days)