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CX-40 Joystick Difficult to Move

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Hello, I just got my first Atari 2600 (Atari Jr. model) at an incredible price, but the CX-40 joystick that came with it is pretty tough to move sometimes. All the directions work, as well as the button, but sometimes you really have to press hard in order for the joystick to actually move in a certain direction. I tried unscrewing it and screwing it back (tightening the screws) but I'm still getting the same issue.

 

I still have hope for this joystick, but if I have to buy another I will. Any suggestions on what I should do? I can't find any guides for this specific problem (only stuff on buttons and the joystick not working). Thanks in advance!

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I always found the CX-40 joysticks to be a lot stiffer than I would like too. They will loosen up a little with use, but that could take months and you might not want to deal with all the hand cramps along the way. Personally I really like the Flashback 2 joysticks. They look a lot like the CX-40 joysticks except they have a little orange Atari logo in the upper right corner on top of the stick and a black Atari logo in the middle of the underside of the stick. They're substantially less stiff, though you will have to put some thread locker or loctite on the threads of the stick itself to prevent it from coming unscrewed during use.

 

Another good option is the Wico Command Control bat style stick. It's also easy to maneuver and not too stiff, though I will admit that diagonal movement still requires more force than I'd like. Fortunately there aren't many games that affects significantly (Venture and Berzerk mainly) and it's a very comfortable to use stick overall. I also like the Sega Genesis Arcade Power Stick, if you don't mind using a less traditional joystick.

 

Those are the only sticks I've used that I didn't find to be overly stiff, but I'm sure other people will be able to provide you with some good options too. :)

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Thanks guys, I guess there isn't any way around this. I'll probably pick up any higher quality stick I can find around here, or just use my Genesis controllers for the time being.

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Just get one of those new Atari style joysticks off ebay. They have nice "clicky" dome switches and are very responsive. Also pretty cheap. :)

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Hello, I just got my first Atari 2600 (Atari Jr. model) at an incredible price, but the CX-40 joystick that came with it is pretty tough to move sometimes. All the directions work, as well as the button, but sometimes you really have to press hard in order for the joystick to actually move in a certain direction. I tried unscrewing it and screwing it back (tightening the screws) but I'm still getting the same issue.

 

I still have hope for this joystick, but if I have to buy another I will. Any suggestions on what I should do? I can't find any guides for this specific problem (only stuff on buttons and the joystick not working). Thanks in advance!

You shouldn't have to press really hard to get a response on the screen. The joystick probably needs rebuilt.

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Hello, I just got my first Atari 2600 (Atari Jr. model) at an incredible price, but the CX-40 joystick that came with it is pretty tough to move sometimes. All the directions work, as well as the button, but sometimes you really have to press hard in order for the joystick to actually move in a certain direction. I tried unscrewing it and screwing it back (tightening the screws) but I'm still getting the same issue.

 

I still have hope for this joystick, but if I have to buy another I will. Any suggestions on what I should do? I can't find any guides for this specific problem (only stuff on buttons and the joystick not working). Thanks in advance!

 

The problem is most likely the inner joystick handle base. They flex and crack over time and become significantly less responsive:

http://console5.com/store/parts/joystick-parts/atari-cx40-joystick-inner-handle-rev-e.html

 

They're out of stock, but if you open the joystick up and look at this part, around the base you'll probably see signs of overflexed plastic, stress cracks etc. I know you can get replacement parts online, but sometimes it's just easier to check your local flea markets and game stores and buy a newer one. Maybe test it first if possible.

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2600 sticks especially the CX40's are known for breaking over time. Serious gaming, gamer rage lol, and so much wear and tear from many gaming sessions. A best electronics version is a great one to get. My personal choice like Jin mentioned is the Wico Command control baseball bat style controller. A must for Missle Command! Also you can go the lesser traditional route and use a Sega Genesis or Master System joypad. They work well too.

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I gotta say, I'm not too crazy about the Flashback joysticks. I just bought an old Jr. and it came with one. Nothing beats the feel of a real CX-40. :)


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