NES problems

NES problems
by on (#6770)
I've noticed that the problems that the NES has, like glitchy graphics, and not working carts don't come from dirt! I don't think, at least. I think the cart has to be put in just right to work. Because when it doesn't work, and you take it out and blow on it, you really think you're getting dirt off, or helping by blowing on it in any way? I don't think so. The dirt takes a long time to get off with rubbing alchohol! I think that you take it out, put it back in, and it just so happens that one time it works, that you put it in just the right way. Am I right? Because when your games aren't working after cleaning them to a shine, you have to wonder what the deal is. And, if you have a cart in your NES, turn on the thing, and if it's running, lightly touch the cart. The thing will screw up, because it was slightly misplaced when you thouch it. For the one's that don't know(I think everyone know's this, but just incase you don't) if you try that thing I just said to try, make sure the cart's not battery packed, your saved game will most likely die. I may sound stupid, but am I making any sense? What is the deal with non working NESs? :?

by on (#6771)
Trust me, it IS due to dirt, not only on the cartridge but also inside the NES's cart connector. If the pins are not clean enough, they will not make consistent contact, and if those intermittent pins happen to be the SECURITY lines (for the lockout chip), then the game blinks until you get it right.

by on (#6773)
There's a 72-pin connector inside the console. Have you tried bending the pins on that connector inward so that they grip the cart more tightly?

by on (#6783)
I don't know how you can bend the pins so it can connect more tightly, but I do know that the cart has to be just centered to work. Dirt really is a problem, I will agree with you Quietust on that, but I do know that the position of the cartridge is vital, at least in my NES. I need to clean the crap out of some of my games. I tested every single NES game I own today(I don't own that many), and most of them worked, except for I spotted something very odd. I put in my SMB1/Duck Hunt cart, and I pushed down the thing, and it didn't work. Just a flashing grey screen. Then I turned the thing off, pushed down on the cart so it would come up. I positioned it just right, and turned it on. When I turned it on I was going to say, Oh, forgot to push it down, which i did, and the game was running! Then I pushed the thing down, and it wouldn't work. Made it come up, it worked! Weird... Most of these games were my brothers, and he wasn't the most carfull person with games. When the NES became mine, I wasn't that clean about them either. Fastforward to not too long ago. I got a gamebit, and I opened up these carts. <dust cloud flies up, I cough(that didn't really happen)> man, it was FILTHY. My NES was pretty dirty too. I cleaned them both, and they were nice and shiny. It dries and whatnot, and I stick a game in. It doesn't work. I take it out, blow on it, put it back in. Doesn't work. I repeat the same steps a couple times. It finally works like new. Why? Not because I blew off extra dirt when I took it out, it just so happened that I put it back in in the right position. Think about it just a little bit. It takes alot to get some of the dirt off a cart, with rubbing alcohol, and a toothbrush! Is your measly .02 mile an hour breath gonna get it off? No way! The position is vital, that's all I'm saying. And I didn't really start this topic to ask what's wrong with my NES, I was thinking what do you think the main problems with dirty NESs are. And what do you guys use to clean your NES carts?

by on (#6797)
I agree pretty much with Celius. I never happended to have a SNES or GBA game not working once, but any NES game have about one chance out of two to work when you instert it. All of them uses similar connectors, so I couldn't see why dust wouldn't cause problem on SNES or GBA.
GBA definitly has more precision cartridge slot, and it is impossible to instert the cartridge wrong, so it may not enter in the contest. But the SNES have a very similar connector to the NES, exept that it has less pins and that it is top-loaded. I NEVER happened once to have a SNES game doesn't work, while this happen often on my NES. And of course I don't clean my SNES games/console at all because it isn't needed, while I clean most of my NES cartridge. Why the crap is the NES never good working ?

by on (#6804)
Comparing the NES frontloader connector to an SNES cart connector is like comparing apples to oranges - the frontloader connector is far more sensitive since it makes weaker contact with the cartridge edge (easily evident from the fact that it requires almost no insertion force compared to a toploader).

by on (#6808)
Use Brasso man,
It works so unbelievably well on cart edge connectors!

You can use De-Ox spray on the NES's tin connectors. I've recoved every single NES using this method.

by on (#6822)
Quietust, you may be right.
What is Brasso man ?

by on (#6825)
http://www.stanleylondon.com/brasso.htm

It restores the contacts on the NES carts to pretty much new condition.

You can buy it at just about any hardware store.

by on (#6829)
I didn't think the contacts of the NES were made of brass, copper, pewter, chrome, or stainless steel. Those are the metals Brasso is advertised to work on.

I can testify to the power of De-Ox spray. I has some cartridges with very nasty contacts and after an application or two of De-Oxit! spray, they are reliable.

by on (#6839)
Replace the 72-pin connector in the NES and virtually all of your NES games will work like a charm again. You can feel it the first time you put in a cart after replacing the connector - you have to push with much greater force to get it in.

If you don't want to replace the connector, it is possible to rework the pins on the existing connector to get them back to their original positions (over time the pins get pushed back due to the spring-loaded nature of the connector, preventing them from getting a strong contect). I haven't done this personally so I don't know how easy it is or anything, but I know someone else who did this and it worked very well.

If you don't want to do either of those, just try to insert the game to the correct position, making sure not to push the game too far into the console (it's way too easy in a worn-out NES to get the game in too far). My brother said it's best to push in the cartridge just far enough that you can push it down, and no farther. If you have a Game Genie around, consider using it - for some reason it's easier to get a game to start if it goes through a Game Genie (at least for me).

Dirt can always play a role, so you should always be sure to clean the cartridges and the internal connector as well. However, dirt is by no means the only reason for problems.

by on (#6842)
Anonymous wrote:
If you don't want to replace the connector, it is possible to rework the pins on the existing connector to get them back to their original positions (over time the pins get pushed back due to the spring-loaded nature of the connector, preventing them from getting a strong contect).
[...]
If you have a Game Genie around, consider using it - for some reason it's easier to get a game to start if it goes through a Game Genie (at least for me).

These work for exactly the same reason. The Game Genie uses a thicker circuit board, which makes better contact for the same reason a connector with reworked pins makes better contact. If you can get Game Genie to work, you might want to rework the pins in your connector.

by on (#6873)
Blowing on a cart most definetly helps - but I think it has more to do with the slobber that gets all over the contacts...actually I think it has everything to do with it.

by on (#6880)
Official word from Nintendo is that blowing is just a placebo. Effectiveness compared to just reseating the cart is about as good as waving a rubber chicken. Whatever blowing does, a cotton swab soaked in 70% isopropanol does better.

by on (#6882)
tepples wrote:
Official word from Nintendo is that blowing is just a placebo. Effectiveness compared to just reseating the cart is about as good as waving a rubber chicken. Whatever blowing does, a cotton swab soaked in 70% isopropanol does better.

I agree 98% :)
I don't think it's totally a placebo, though admitedly I haven't done any statistical analysis which Nintendo may have done. Blowing in the cartridge definately increases the humidity around the connector, which could help loosen up the corrosion when the insertion happens.
However, blowing could have a negative affect. If by blowing on your cart, you delay cleaning it, the corrosion could become worse. Once the copper is gone, it's gone forever. If your cart is oxydizing, leaving it that way will destroy it's ability to make a good connection permanently.

by on (#7170)
teaguecl wrote:
tepples wrote:
However, blowing could have a negative affect. If by blowing on your cart, you delay cleaning it, the corrosion could become worse. Once the copper is gone, it's gone forever. If your cart is oxydizing, leaving it that way will destroy it's ability to make a good connection permanently.
It's true! The humidity from your breath can also speed the corrosion process. I've only seen one 72-pin connector become irrecoverably damaged this way, but I've seen it happen.

by on (#7178)
Nintendo's precautions notices for Game Boy games say to don't blow on cartridge. I don't have any notices for NES games, but I think it say the same. They also say to don't clean it with alcool, that, I think, would have no negative effect, even if there would be no positive either. They could tell to users that de-ox would work instead, notices say to use Nintedo made cleaning kits, but I never saw any !! I doubt they did that just for money, heh.

by on (#7185)
I'm not 100% sure, but I think even the official NES cleaning kits used isopropyl alcohol, I did have an official one way back when, but I can't remember. I know at least other cartridge type cleaning kits do.

But yes don't even bother with that crap, DeOxit is magical stuff, I love it :)

by on (#7187)
Actually I recall owning an official Nintendo cleaning kit and they tell you to dampen the cleaning surface in water! You were insert the damp cleaning cartridge into the console 10-15 times and wait from 45 minutes to an hour for it to dry.

by on (#7193)
BootGod wrote:
I'm not 100% sure, but I think even the official NES cleaning kits used isopropyl alcohol

I think I still have an official NES cleaning kit manual. It says use water at first, but if that doesn't work, use 50% isopropyl alcohol. (Rubbing alcohol is 70% isopropanol.) The unlicensed cleaning kit had a mild detergent.

by on (#7195)
Okay, I bought an official game cleaning kit a while back, and the tools inside were usefull. But the solution was just rubbing alcohol. I agree that Nintendo thought that people were technologicly inept, and didn't know anything, and they thought they could just tell people that you couldn't use rubbing alcohol. That's a bunch of crap. You can totally just clean it with rubbing alcohol. It came with a thing that you stick in the cart connecter, and it is thick, so it is kind of hard to push in, then you pull it out, and the dirt comes off on the thing when you pull it out. I was like 8 when I bought it, so I didn't know. But you know what cleans carts really well? Fold a 3 x 3 (or around that size) sticky note in half 4 times one way, and 1 time in half the other. Then stick it in between the pins and the plastic part, and slide it each way from one end to another a bunch of times really fast, and when you pull out the sticky note, there'll be a whole bunch of dirt on it! If it's a really dirty cart. Works good all the same. Am I making any sense?