Eucalyptus oil is fantastic for removing weird gunk and sticky residue.
Today I found this copy of Sim City for the Super Nintendo at Cash Converters. It was in pretty terrible shape, but working. I needed a game cartridge to test my old SNES was working before I sold it, and Sim City was the lucky winner.
I have been using Eucalyptus Oil to clean weird sticky stuff off of things for a while, but it happens to work especially well on game cartridges. They pick up a lot of gunk in their lives being handled and bounced around, and the game labels themselves don’t seem to react to the mild solvent action of the eucalyptus oil as much as harsher solvents. You can use Acetone as well, but it has a habit of dissolving the printing on the label if you’re not careful. It also stinks – I’d far rather smell Eucalyptus than acetone.
After a bit of work it’s wound up looking a lot less daggy. There’s nothing much we can do about the torn label, but at least it’s no longer sticky and gross.
Following this, I confirmed my old SNES was indeed working. Huzzah! So, keep an eye out on eBay for a SNES with a copy of Sim City with a torn label.