The latest VESC I have repaired was a pretty common short circuit failure caused by an exposed wire.
If you are lucky and only shorted the ppm header/ 3 pin servo connector, then sometimes you can replace the tvs diode and all will be well. More often then not a short will cause the stm chip to fail and possibly the drv8302 mosfet driver.
This VESC was reported to have been shorted and the led’s were not lighting up anymore. The vesc was indeed unresponsive upon arrival. When powered the voltage regulator would heat up signaling a short circuit had developed somewhere.
I was doubtful that the vreg had failed but to be sure, I used canned air to frost the board and carefully watched the stm processor as I powered the board once again. Sure enough the stm chip quickly thawed the frost signaling it had developed a short and needed to be replaced. Sure, using canned air seems crude but, as I recently found out from other community members, is a very sound way of detecting hot spots and shorts.
After replacing the stm chip with a hot air station the vesc once again came back to life when powered. Of course it being a fresh chip it was in need of firmware and the bootloader. After it was flashed I attempted to run motor detection with the bldc-tool and it failed. I checked the terminal for faults and as I suspected it was the drv8302.
Another round on the hot air station with a fresh driver and our once dead VESC was back in business!