Leaking Game Master II?

By uberjack

Master (247)

uberjack's picture

28-03-2019, 03:43

I got a copy of GM II yesterday, and I noticed the area around the cartridge was covered in liquid. Is this the battery leaking, or is it something else? The game seems to be fine, for the time being.

If it is the battery, what's the easiest way to take the cartridge apart without ruining it? Any suggestions?

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By uberjack

Master (247)

uberjack's picture

30-03-2019, 03:18

I'm going to answer my own question, since I actually ended up opening the cartridge and finding no significant sign of leakage. So as to where the moisture is coming from - I'm stumped. It's possible that the seller used some form of cleaner that was still in the cartridge.

As to how to open a cartridge, opening them is relatively trivial once you peel the label enough to expose two clamps on the front face (in the images I've labeled them 1 and 2). Thing is, peeling the label without damaging it is far from trivial, because a) the label needs to be heated to be removed - otherwise it tears, and b) once it is heated, it tends to curl, and when re-attached is never the same again.

So anyway,
1. Heat the label sufficiently to expose the tab holes in front
2. Insert a small flathead screwdriver between the tab and the catch, enough to disengage them. To do this, slightly pry open the front left/right side after inserting. These tabs are extremely brittle, so even a minimal amount of force can break the catch. If you feel the side of cartridge opening, stop, and do the other side. If the tab is disengaged, the cartridge will remain slightly open on the side.
3. Once both tabs are disengaged, all that's left is the middle tabs:

Unfortunately, these tabs are inaccessible, unless you damage the side of the cartridge. Luckily, however, you can try prying the cartridge open with only (1) and (2) open - the rest of the tabs disengage without breakage. Pulling the 2 sides of the cartridge apart with your thumbs, carefully pry them open. You'll need to use a decent amount of force, so be aware. If done correctly, the cartridge should snap open with no damage:

Unfortunately, I ended up ruining an otherwise good TwinBee cartridge to figure this out, and the label on my GameMaster II will never be the same again - it now curls at the bottom edge, and peels off at the slightest provocation. However, everything else seems to be in good order - none of the tabs are broken, there's not a single scratch on the cartridge, and I was able to snap it shut like it was brand new. If anyone has any suggestions on the type of adhesive I can use to fix the edge of the cartridge label - I'm all ears.

Anyway, hope this is helpful. I was only able to find one other tutorial on how to open Konami carts (one on F1 Spirit), but I wasn't able to make that work.

By Wlcracks

Champion (411)

Wlcracks's picture

30-03-2019, 07:32

Sucks to have ruined it. Those Lithium? batteries are not know for leaking. Date stamp 88 damn.

By gdx

Prophet (3320)

gdx's picture

30-03-2019, 10:13

Thanks for the tutorial. I never managed to open Konami's cartridge without damaging the tabs.

Now that it's open take the opportunity of it to change the batterie.
To re-paste the label you can use Spray Glues for artists. Repositionable Adhesive from 3M should do the work.

By OeiOeiVogeltje

Paragon (1324)

OeiOeiVogeltje's picture

30-03-2019, 13:10

as for opening konami's
i opened both kind of original SCC+ carts
i temporarly disabled the glue from the carts with
Seal and Bond remover from Innotec
for the SD snatcher cart it worked flawlessly (the label was put back with its own original glue without any damage at all)
the snatcher cart has discoloured a bit

if you use this you must simply soak the label with this stuff and it will come off almost on itself
at least ..it did in my case

By uberjack

Master (247)

uberjack's picture

30-03-2019, 19:05

Thanks guys. Since I wrote the post, I tried Rubber Cement on the label edges - it worked surprisingly well. The excess stuff rubs off without any issues.