9

Have a look at this board:

Internals of SNES Cartridge with broken contacts

And be honest with me... Is this thing done?

All I get is a black screen, I've cleaned these contacts as much as I can to where no more residue is coming off. I know it sort of looks like rust on these pins, but it's actually where some of the nickel plating has come off. And whatever that is on the far left pin is under the green it seems: I'm not an electronics genius, so I don't know much about circuit boards.

Plenty of other games work on my SNES, so this cart is definitely the problem.

Should I chuck this one out with the garbage? Any ideas on potentially salvaging it?

  • I am not a circuit board expert and while there looks to be enough of the pins themselves, look at the lines coming off pins 1 2 3 7 8 9 10 19 and 20.. the others are not to great themselves. I would say that the copper pathing may just be too far gone. – James Mar 1 '15 at 0:12
  • Is there a way to fix/replace the pathing? – Spartacus Mar 1 '15 at 0:38
3

I'm not sure if you can apply it here, but I know there is a way to fix damaged paths on circuit board. Here is the link that demonstrates how to do it:

In short, it describes how to remove the damaged section of a circuit trace, which tools to use and how to replace it with a new trace.

In your case, I would first try to identify which paths are damaged. You can use continuity test of a multimeter for that. Almost any digital multimeter has that option nowaday. And then, you can apply the method described above on each such path.

You might need neurosurgical skills to do it on such a small board, but it should be possible.

  • Nice answer. +1 – John Jan 29 '16 at 9:45
  • 2
    If it's possible, adding at least the crucial details of the video to the answer would be a good idea, just in case the video gets taken down. – DJ Pirtu Jan 29 '16 at 9:52
7

You have 1 pin that's completely worn off, and another that's getting there quick. A third pin looks like the connection is completely broken, and a few more look like they might need some work.

This won't work.

I would only keep the game if it's worth >$100. Otherwise the time and cost will likely not be worth it. The repairs aren't really that difficult for someone who's done it before, but finding someone experienced might be an issue.

  • 1
    This is a $100+ game, that's why I'm definitely interested in fixing it... Can you point me in the right direction? – Spartacus Mar 1 '15 at 0:25
  • I would suggest first cleaning it. This thread will point you in the right direction. If that doesn't work, then you can remove a bit of the green plastic above the pin connectors and solder a tiny glob to reconnect the traces. The missing pin might be more difficult, but my friend here tells me that there are methods to reflow the metal back on. – user66184 Mar 1 '15 at 0:44
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    Really though, let the experts do the repair if you aren't sure. Many household cleaners will wreck the cart. If all else fails, you can do a ROM swap onto a donor board. The boards will have to match versions, but it's actually the easiest solution. – user66184 Mar 1 '15 at 0:44
  • 1
    I think I'll just find a pcb repair place somewhere and have them do it. I've definitely cleaned the contacts with alcohol, they were a lot worse looking than this photo. And is that what is wrong with pin 6, is that it's missing? – Spartacus Mar 1 '15 at 1:25
  • Pin 6 looks like it has been eroded down to the copper, and the trace looks broken. It might still work if the trace was repaired, but any further wear is only going to make it worse. – user66184 Mar 1 '15 at 1:29

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