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CX10 Hex Disc Question

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It's always been generally assumed that all CX10 joysticks came with the little hexagonal "Atari" or "Sears" discs set into the top of the stick, and that any CX10 joysticks found without them must have  originally had them at one point but came off and got lost. That's certainly true to some degree--I've seen loose hex discs with Atari stuff--but I wonder: did Atari ditch the hex discs during the lifetime of the CX10, and pack the joysticks along with consoles without them?

 

A couple of things make me think this might be the case:

- There was quite a bit of mixing and matching of components and parts as Atari transitioned to the Light Sixer and used up Heavy Sixer parts in the process; what constitutes a "correct" Heavy Sixer--or Light Sixer--system set (console, controllers, power supply, Combat cart, etc.) is not quite as rigidly homogeneous as is usually thought.

- The hex disc, while neat, is an expendable frivolity that would be an obvious candidate for cost-cutting.

- CX10 joysticks must outnumber extant hex discs by at least 10:1. Maybe (probably?) more. That's a really high proportion of missing discs for an item that every joystick supposedly had.

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I was 15 when we got our Sears Video Arcade in 1977.  Ever though I took very good care of it, the aluminum Sears discs came off The tops.  One fell through the speaker grill top of the console and rattled around inside.  I called my cousin to ask if aluminum could conduct electricity .. I didn’t know for sure.  So I did open up the console very carefully and removed it.  I did glue them back on but they kept falling off.  Eventually they were in a box of childhood stuff in my closet.  Mom thoughtlessly threw out some stuff years later ..

 

I do have an Atari disc in my collection .. I have not put it back on a CX10 stick yet.

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It would not surprise me at all if they stopped adding discs at some point. There just seems to be way too many sticks vs discs out there. I wouldn’t think every stick made would lose their disc but who knows. Maybe the glue was that bad. I still suspect that they simply stopped at some point because it wasn’t “value added”.

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Another reason I suspect the hex discs were abandoned is that there are catalog and ad appearances, such as the famous "Don't Watch TV Tonight--Play It!," that depict CX10 joysticks without hex discs.

 

1561474663_CX10nodisc.PNG.5d5c18194dbb6d2c7139b5da5e934570.PNG

 

This doesn't necessarily prove anything since ads and mockups aren't always perfect reflections of the products in question, but it's very interesting nonetheless.

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