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Easy repair for your NES.

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 8:57 am
by gamedudemat
My latest video where I show you how to take care of an NES that won't do anything but blink, instead of playing games!

Re: Easy repair for your NES.

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 5:05 pm
by Hobie-wan
Always good to have a how to showing people how to fix things, but this video is problematic and will cause damage in the long run.

Please don't encourage people to blow in carts. The spit and humidity introduced by blowing on the carts increases the problem by making the corrosion worse. The contacts in the system are some other nickel plated alloy. If you look at worn leaves, they'll be a light golden color where the silverish plating has worn off. The pins on the cart are copper underneath, but they're gold plated. Gold is more tarnish resistant. Need to specifically bring up that the longer brass screws go in the rearward center positions on the inner tray. Sandpaper should only be a last resort if gentler cleaning doesn't resolve the issue. The sanding is removing corrosion, but you're also removing even more of the nickel plating so they'll corrode faster in future. Also you blew into this nice shiny metal, giving it a nice fresh bit of wetness to start corroding again, especially as you had the sniffles. Contact cleaner is made for cleaning contacts. It will not remove metal. An eraser will also remove a lot of gunk without removing metal. If you're going to use steel wool on a very dirty board, you should should be using canned air to make sure no particles of the steel wool are left behind touching anything. Go touch a 9 volt battery or use a lighter on your steel wool pad outside on some concrete. Now imagine a little bit of that happening with a component in the system.

No no no no no Windex. Windex and glass cleaners have ammonia in it. Ammonia is corrosive. You are trying to remove corrosion, not add a new fresh layer of it. Windex also has blue coloring and perfumes in it. These will all leave a film on your contacts. DO NOT USE WINDEX. A towel is not going to 'buff out' any scratches left by metal on metal contact. You even mention moisture while cleaning the cart, think about the moisture in your breath. On a cold day or a cold mirror, when you breathe on it and make fog, that's the moisture in your breath condensing from vapor to larger droplets. When you sanded down to the copper layer, it absolutely did hurt the cart. The copper will corrode much faster just sitting in the air than the gold plating does. The connectors aren't plated with gold so your carts can have bling.

I know you're trying to be helpful, but this just spreads incorrect information and will lead to more messed up carts and systems in the long run. :(

Re: Easy repair for your NES.

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 9:59 pm
by gamedudemat
I understand what you're saying, I must say however I started cleaning games with windex about 4 years ago. I use to use water or alcohol from fear of windex damage , they never really cleaned games all that well. They would return to malfunctioning very quickly. I also am aware that gold plating isn't bling, the only reason I ever use fine grit sand paper is for games that are pretty far gone with thick fuzzy corrosion. I don't have to use it that often because most games out there aren't that dirty. And I didn't encourage anyone to blow into cartridges, I just didn't have any compressed air. The games that I have cleaned have stayed working quite well since 4 years ago, I haven't had to clean them twice. I know that there are extra measure methods but how I clean and restore these games isn't the most reckless either.

Re: Easy repair for your NES.

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 11:01 pm
Agree with Hobie, Windex though a cleaning agent has that acidic property that may ruin the plating. Any sanding or steel wool is also a very very desperate measure, there are better methods available that won't scratch off the gold cart or chrome console connector plating. Blowing on a cart should never be done, no excuse not to get the canned air or soft brush.

1. Pencil Eraser - No Chemicals to deal with. Eraser bits will have to be brushed off or canned air blown off.

2. Rubbing Alcohol - Least chemically intrusive, leaves very little residue.

3. Electrical Contact Cleaner - A little more agressive, use for heavier buildup.

Game Cart Contact Cleaning Guide with contributions from various members: