Originally Posted by ragu0012
My question, is there any place someone like me could order a new DVD drive part and attempt to fix myself? if I could buy the part myself it might be a fun basement project to tinker around.
No, there isn't, and no, you can't.
If such an option was available, you wouldn't have received 28 replies suggesting you buy a different recorder: within the first six replies, someone would have advised you how to repair it yourself. Panasonic, like most other brands, used goofball proprietary dedicated burner designs in their recorders that cannot be sourced from anyone but Panasonic service centers at a cost that exceeded that of a new recorder. If you were luckier, and your EZ48v had broken down two years earlier, you could have still used their flat-fee $150 mail-in repair depot. But that repair service has been discontinued, and the only recourse left for USA Panasonic owners is private specialists like our own mickinct here on AVS. While he does excellent work at a reasonable price, that price still exceeds the intrinsic value of an EZ48v: today, it really doesn't make sense to spend $150-250 on repairs for anything but the best vintage DVD/HDD models. With something like the EZ48v, its usually better to spend that repair money on a more convenient brand-new DVD/HDD model like the Magnavox series or import Panasonics.
I will concede that in theory, if you were extremely advanced in doing electronics repair as a hobby, already had access to an assortment of expensive testing gear, could isolate exactly which part of the burner is broken, and could find a source that still had that part, then yeah: maybe you could repair your EZ48v burner for about $75. Complete replacement burners were obscenely expensive at $200-$300 wholesale, unless you knew about the Panasonic direct mail-in depot. Independent repair shops would usually try to replace the specific broken part in the burner, rather than the whole assembly. The most difficult aspect today would be finding the parts: Panasonic itself doesn't have them anymore. A handful of forward-thinking independent techs like mickinct stockpiled a small stash of these parts when they saw the writing on the wall some years ago, but these techs are not going to sell you these rare parts wholesale: it would be against their own business interests.
Keep the EZ48v if you like its VCR section. But forget about the dead DVD section: its a lost cause. Buy one of the other recorders suggested above, or use a PC.