Keepin' It clean- The Joystick/Pad cleaning thread

Hey guys,
I thought I’d make this thread to help people keep their sticks/pads nice and pretty. Soooo… Let’s get to typing!

I know what NOT to use; alcohol, windex and dish soap… what do you use?

WRONG. Who the hell told you this?

Actually depending on the parts, you want to use Alcohol, Windex and dish soap. Key word their is PARTS.
90% strength rubbing alcohol is great for cleaning electronics. It is the only solvent approved for PC part cleaning by most A+ cert text books. Only areas you want to avoid alcohol is areas that contain printed art work or anything porous like wood or MDF. A good 90% of Gamepad button failure is from dirt, dust and grime. Alcohol is a degreaser so it breaks down oils from peoples fingers and hands. It washes away left over solder flux, and it evaporates so quickly that the solvent does not even have a chance to hurt anything. You literary have to soak electronics in a seal container with alcohol for hours (sometimes days) before it harm anything.
On some industrial parts Alcohol is not enough so contact cleaner has to be used.

Dish soap is fine on ABS plastics, assuming you remove anything from that plastic that could be harmed by water. A empty Console housing or Plastic arcade stick housing is fine if washed with warm water hand dish soap.
Please dry completely before reassembly. Most of Geek Hack recommends Dish Soap for cleaning plastic parts from vintage keyboards.

Windex, is iffy, it is mind enough to use on most non-porous surfaces. On most plastics Windex is fine. Windex can get way being on many kinds of plexy glass if not used at full strength. Soak a rag rather than spray the object being cleaned. Get Glass cleaner that has no added extra ingredients, the only ingredients should be ammonia, water and sometimes white vinger

Now the stupid thing is to spray Windex on a completely assembled arcade stick or game console.

99% of Game pad cleaning can be done with rubbing alcohol and some q-tips.
The stick area of the original Neo Geo game Pad and the analog stick of the N64 controller can be lubed with the same lubricants that arcade parts used.

Didn’t mean to upset you @Darksakul. Art had this posted on his page about plexi care and I guess I made a mistake by assuming it was in total the stick "DO NOT use window cleaners to clean your plexiglass. Anything that is ammonia based, like Windex, will ruin it. Alcohol based agents can also damage plexiglass. For a quick clean you can use a clean, wet, cloth with very mild dish detergent to clean smudges. Otherwise, a damp clean cloth should be ok to wipe off dust. Microfiber cloth is preferred if you have access to one. Do not wipe with any paper towels as you may risk webbing the plexi."

He does go on to cross sell Novus… Never heard of it or used it but I think this weekend I am gonna look for a plastic cleaning solution OTC I can pick up locally.

So I didn’t know really what to use. He even sounded iffy on the mild soap. Thanks for the clarification. Much love and respect.

I am not upset, I tend to sound “louder” in text format than in person. Adding emphasis on my statement make me sound more like a Ass hole than I really needed to be, I just trying to be blunt as I can to bet my message straight.

Art’s recommendations apply his products as he should know the materials better than I would. I imagine the wrong cleaner plays havoc on those mirrored acrylics he does sell.
I looked into it; Windex on Acrylic is a bad idea but fine on something like ABS, PBT or Nylon. Weird issue is every plastic is different.

@Darksakul ur awesome. Thanks for pickin me back up. :slight_smile:
Hey found a local guy here in SLC selling Novus for 4 bucks for an 8oz bottle!!! They ship too.
Has some other stuff there too guess I’m set :smiley:

This Brillianize plastic cleaner may be the silver bullet for cheap!

Microfiber cloths are amazing for cleaning electronics in general, I bought a pack at my local dollar store of about 6. lol.

Can’t go wrong with it. Also check some grocery stores and such (Like Aldi, Wal-mart, etc) and see if they have them there. That’s always a safe bet/route to go before going to a straight electronics dealer. They’ll probably be more expensive there anyway.

What’s good for cleaning a regular ol’ model 1 TE?

Microfiber cloth does wonders. Hate to re-state it after it was just posted, but they truly are awesome on so many different surfaces, and they won’t scratch either to my knowledge. I use one to clean my sticks all the time.

Going to Delvies Monday. I’ll update on how Brillianize or Novus does. They have both just not sure which it’ll be. AAAANNDD @.Cobra, I’ll go to the dollar store and get some microfiber cloths and do before and after pics if my SE and my SCV shine :smiley:

This stuff is AWESOME!!! It is better than Novus as it has silicone in it and it is anti-static as well as alcohol and ammonia free. Resists scratches and fingerprints all for 5 bucks. I put some on my iPhone too and it feels nice.

AFTER w/Brillianize and a Microfiber

Notice the balltop reflection

Does it work on cardstocks?


All hard shiny NON-POROUS surfaces… Sorry

magic putty

I think this is the safest and the most thorough way to clean keyboard, gamepad and arcade stick and gadgets alike

or microfiber cloth when it is only a little bit dusty, or smudgy from fingerprints.

I use a microfiber cloth and Monster Flatscreen Spray. It’s not as harsh and meant for cleaning laptops and lcd screens. So it won’t mess up your buttons!

Where can I buy some magic putty?

last time I bought mine at computer shop, but I guess they also available at places like Ace Hardware, that thing works well to clean dust and loose dirt, turn out not as effective to clean fingerprints or fat, I just found that out when I tried to clean my other stick with plexi on top

computer shops, some electronic stores like Frys or Radio Shack, Best buy, Think Geek and a few other places.

Microfiber cloth and quick detailing spray for cars is all I’ve ever used.