Author Topic: Mini Game Tool Kit  (Read 298 times)

Mini Game Tool Kit
« on: July 22, 2019, 12:44:14 pm »
Bit of a silly thing to make a thread over, but I'm really happy with how this came together so I wanted to show off a bit!

So, we all know there's fake games out in the world, and one of the best ways to spot them is to open cartridges and check boards. Most cartridges use non-standard screws, meaning if you want to do this, you'll need a set of special tools just for opening up your gaming stuff. We also know dirty connectors can keep a game from running correctly, so being able to clean them can make sure a game found is functional or not. A really good game store is going to have these tools & supplies in the building for you to use- but the really good stores also probably did all the cleaning & checking for you. The OK stores might have a TV around for you to use, but likely won't have any of the rest- and yard sales/conventions? No guarantees. A prepared retro game shopper needs to be carrying these things around, in case they need them & the seller doesn't have them.

Now, up until a few days ago, I had 2 sets of tools- my big home set consists of about a dozen various screwdrivers, plus cleaners, polishes, microfiber cloths, cotton rounds, system-specific connector cleaners, etc. Basically everything I have ever needed for anything I've ever done to a console or cartridge at home. It takes up a plastic bin the size of a small trashcan- too big for being out & about. So, I made a travel kit for conventions- a carefully selected group of drivers, plus one up cards/q-tips/iso… basically everything I should need to open & clean a cart for any system I own. This set is in a plastic pencil box- fine for my big convention messenger bag, not so good for my everyday purses. I needed a much more compact set, but the screwdrivers only get so small, right?

Then, a few weeks ago, I found this. It don't open every cart for every console, but it's going to cover a good 95% of them. Plus, it'll open a few of the standard controllers too, and it's all with 1/8th hex bits instead of the far more common 1/4th... meaning it's about half the size of most tools. I ordered two- this one, and the blue version offered at Retro Modding. But what about the cleaners, & something to keep it all in?

I immedately hit up Daiso- sort of a Japanese dollar store- knowing they sold empty atomizers (like these, but indivually). I got a couple bottles and a teal earbud case. A visit to Amazon netted me a second earbud case (different shape for a deep bag where I find things by feel.) I also dug up a couple eyeglass cleaning cloths- not hard to get. Ever go to a gorvery store & have someone try to sell you knives with 'a free gift' at the end of the pitch? Almost always an eyeglass cloth. Anyway, the orange tools showed up, and I got to assembling:

A perfect little tool set in a case 5x3 inches- plenty small enough for any bag! A bit of stick-on velcro hook keeps the small stuff in place. Still waiting on the blue tools for the other case- the mesh pocket in that one's turned the other way, so I added an elastic band to hold the taller tools. More photos when I have it together too- then I'll have a lil' set for all of my bags, & can be ready to check any too-good-to-be-true finds!
« Last Edit: July 22, 2019, 12:50:08 pm by hoshichiri »

Re: Mini Game Tool Kit
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2019, 07:31:11 pm »
Looks handy if your on the go, like you said. at a Gaming Convention, Yard Sale, or Flea Market. But you may need more cotton swabs if you're going to be cleaning dirty cartridges on the go. Sometimes It took me four or more cotton swabs to clean just one of the really dirty cartridges I picked up from various places :)
Life on earth is only temporary and If you believe in God and do good in life. You can continue to live with any possessions  you desire, in the afterlife, as long as you do good and don't do evil in real life.

Re: Mini Game Tool Kit
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2019, 08:20:47 pm »
I'm hoping to get another 1-up card to add it- I measured with one from my big kit & it would fit just right over the small items. Maybe John Riggs will still have some at PAX West this year...