Author Topic: Contact cleaner on game controller?  (Read 276 times)

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Offline MathWizard

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Contact cleaner on game controller?
« on: June 05, 2021, 04:31:29 am »
I have an old and cheap Logitech 2 action controller, basically like this

And the thumbsticks are sticking some, so IDK if I should try to grease the plastic interfaces, or try some contact cleaner on the 2dim-potentiometer's, probably both.

I love racing games, driving against the track and the clock. But of the few older racing games I have, I also have some windows driver issue where some buttons some get swapped, I need to find a button mapper to fix that I guess.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2021, 04:36:02 am by MathWizard »
 

Offline coppercone2

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Re: Contact cleaner on game controller?
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2021, 04:50:16 am »
what kind of potentiometer is it?

faderlube grease safe for plastic might be the best bet on the sticks, if they can be taken apart.

https://www.amazon.com/DEOXIT-FADER-GREASE-GRAM-JAR/dp/B0015ABJA4
or
https://www.digikey.com/en/products/detail/caig-laboratories,-inc/F5S-H6/10660551?utm_adgroup=Chemicals%2C%20Cleaners&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=Shopping_Product_Tools&utm_term=&utm_content=Chemicals%2C%20Cleaners&gclid=Cj0KCQjwnueFBhChARIsAPu3YkSd4CaHaA3PSBXiMrNnrWqKmEGYayEaMiEKhXIc-xGEFWrpTTgXQX0aAgeEEALw_wcB

after flushing with regular contact cleaner. that might make it dry and sucky. that should handle the electronic connections

then some kind of other grease on the area that moves around, or maybe wax, I am not sure on plastic/plastic ball joint contact area.. not sure what will be good there, not get your hands dirty, etc.

I know that usually dry plastic on dry plastic = bad. but you don't need the electrically enhancing one there. electrical Silicone grease might be too tacky.


but,
I would probobly recommend replacing the things because when I am looking at pictures it looks like a complicated and cheap mechanism with a ton that can go wrong and I recall bad playstation controllers being extremely annoying.. they need to be perfect. playing those games is difficult enough with a brand new controller made with real parts in 2000 lol.

if you just ruined it (i.e. spilled a cup of drink on it) and know why its bad, its worth looking at, but if you just got some random old ass messed up controller... it might be a giant waste of time to clean it. much more complex then some kinda voltage adjust dial on a old power supply. it might have been thrown and dropped by kids for like 5 years and have warped plastic inside.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2021, 05:01:40 am by coppercone2 »
 

Offline MathWizard

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Re: Contact cleaner on game controller?
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2021, 05:00:32 pm »
No it just hasn't used for ages. The pot's themselves are 10k, they are on the outside of a little box, there's springs or something inside the square box they are attached to. I'd have to desolder it to attempt to take it apart, I'd rather not do that, there's plastic tabs that look easy to break, then trting to bend the metal box open...I'd probably break it.

I'll look for some repair video's of these.
 

Offline floobydust

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Re: Contact cleaner on game controller?
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2021, 05:28:07 pm »
Contact cleaner is not a lubricant, it's intent is mainly as a solvent for first cleaning and flushing out old dirt including stale grease.

These analog joysticks need to be cleaned, they get food, dust, hair etc. inside the gimbal mechanism, and the factory grease dries out.
You can use a q-tip wetted with IPA. Then a light grease is used for the mech and PPE like Faderlube for the potentiometers.
I've replaced a bunch of analog joysticks on Xbox, they use (turquoise) Alps parts and there are cheap Alps knockoffs from china as well. The pots do wear out. Very difficult to desolder.

Best is a little space lubricant with teflon, I tried that and the guy started winning so good it caused a family uproar lol, the gaming expert was no longer that. It was on the front fire buttons I put Krytox 105 oil, there is also Krytox grease I have not tried out.
 

Online Ian.M

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Re: Contact cleaner on game controller?
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2021, 05:36:40 pm »
I believe most small thumbsticks in game controllers are fairly generic.  Does the general appearance and PCB footprint match Alps RKJXK122400Y?  If so you should be able to get genuine replacements from distributers (e.g. Mouser, R.S., Arrow, etc.) and clones from Amazon, Ebay, and the usual far east marketplaces.
 

Offline BrokenYugo

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Re: Contact cleaner on game controller?
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2021, 06:23:36 pm »
It's absolutely not the proper thing to use but I find just a hint of WD-40 usually does the trick on these (and all misbehaving pots for that matter), if pushing the stick around it's edge of travel in a circular motion quicky for a few seconds doesn't do it alone. I have saved some PS2 controllers from stick replacement that way.
 

Offline coppercone2

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Re: Contact cleaner on game controller?
« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2021, 08:37:12 pm »
3in1 sells a teflon lubricant, if you want to look, its entirely possible its in lowes. but I have seen their assortment go down over the years since 2015

its a green 3 in 1 plastic oiler for $5

there is also wd40 'dry' lubricant which evaporates, offers very little corrosion protection, but would probobly work for plastics, now that I think about it. if you want to go with local. they usually have that in home depot. the can has a ball in it like a spray paint and it might be suitable for locks iirc
« Last Edit: June 05, 2021, 08:40:05 pm by coppercone2 »
 

Offline MathWizard

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Re: Contact cleaner on game controller?
« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2021, 06:16:14 am »
I believe most small thumbsticks in game controllers are fairly generic.  Does the general appearance and PCB footprint match Alps RKJXK122400Y?  If so you should be able to get genuine replacements from distributers (e.g. Mouser, R.S., Arrow, etc.) and clones from Amazon, Ebay, and the usual far east marketplaces.

Yeah thats the kind w/ the push button aswell. So far I think it works ok electrically, but it gets a little stuck off center, when it should be zero'ed. I can fell the slight position difference.

Years ago before I could solder good, I re-soldered some stuff on this controller, I don't remember why, I suppose I better re-flow it, but really it works ok except now the left thumb stick is sticking.

Some people do use deoxit on these, I suppose I could try that RIGHT NOW. But it probably is just dust/grim. No way am I taking this apart those pots tonight tho, but I would like to try some racing games I just bought.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2021, 06:19:30 am by MathWizard »
 


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