My mission was to restore a Sega Mega Drive so my wife could enjoy playing Sonic the Hedgehog before Christmas. I acquired the cheapest Sega Mega Drive 2 I could find on eBay, though it had some issues. It rattled and didn’t work properly, so the first step was disassembly.
Upon disassembling the console, I discovered that someone had previously tinkered with it, evidenced by a loose screw. Additionally, the power barrel jack was poorly connected, almost as if it was secured with chewing gum. After some meticulous cleaning and soldering work, I managed to rectify these issues.
However, the problems didn’t end there. Despite fixing the power connection and reflowing the cartridge connector, I encountered difficulties with game cartridges. Some required jiggling to work, indicating a tired cartridge socket that needed replacement. This meant more disassembly and careful soldering work to install a new cartridge socket.
After successfully replacing the cartridge socket and ensuring everything was properly aligned and secured, I tested the console, and to my relief, it showed signs of life. With the console now working, I turned my attention to cleaning the controllers, which were sticky and in need of some TLC. I even borrowed a spring from an Amiga 1200 keyboard to repair the power button.
Following a thorough cleaning process, including the outer casings and buttons, I polished them to give them a factory-fresh look and feel. With everything cleaned and restored, it was time to package it all up for my wife to open on Christmas day.
Despite the challenges and setbacks along the way, I’m proud to have restored the Sega Mega Drive, making it ready for some nostalgic gaming sessions. It’s moments like these that remind me of the joy of tinkering and the satisfaction of bringing old technology back to life.