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Thread: Type of plastic in NES cases and sleeves...

  1. #1
    Peach (Level 3)
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    Default Type of plastic in NES cases and sleeves...

    Does anyone know what type of plastic the original black NES sleeves are made out of? My reason for asking is that some plastics like PVC (which was used a lot when these would have been made) are unsafe for long term storage and could damage carts and labels over time. Anyone know? Thanks in advance for the help guys.

  2. #2
    Crono (Level 14)
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    Ive had NES games in these cases for over 10 years and they still work great.
    Super Mario Bros might have been in the sleeve for over 15 years and it still works as new. Think this is just rumours.

  3. #3
    Pac-Man (Level 10) NESaholic's Avatar
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    I think so too,must be a rumour,and if plastic could damage the cart which plastic are you talking about then?

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    Peach (Level 3)
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    PVC can and does have damaging effects over time. It's b/c of the chemical make-up. Polyvinyl-chloride (PVC) releases chloride gas over time which can damage items around it. It's effects were not known until fairly recently though. There are also some possible health and environmental effects. It was used a lot during the time these sleeves would have been produced. It wouldn't necessarily have an effect on how the game played, but on the cosmetics of the cart (label). Plus, I'm thinking about extra long-term storage, and hopefully passing this collection on to my son one day.

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    Crono (Level 14)
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    Know what you saying, but I'm not worried. Store your games in cartboard boxes if you are afraid if they might take damage, should be safe enough i'd say.
    I havnt noticed anything and i doubt the games would take any damage in your lifetime or maybe even in your son's lifetime.

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    Pretzel (Level 4)
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    Hmmm. This is pretty shitty to learn now....

    So does anyone know if the little black sleeves are PVC?
    I really need to find out what these storage drawers from Wal-Mart are made of. I know someone else uses them here, so does anyone know what they are made of???????



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  7. #7
    Crono (Level 14)
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    E-mail Nintendo and ask

    www.nintendo.com

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    Banana (Level 7) SkiDragon's Avatar
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    Well, you could always send a piece to a lab if you really wanted to know.
    Rarest games in collection: (R8) Chavez II for SNES / (R7) Star Gunner (Telesys) for Atari 2600
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    Peach (Level 3)
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    A while back I used to work in a plastics plant that worked primarly in injection molding. I would fill the hoppers and I used my bare hands alot of the time to mix up virgin plastic and regrinded plastic

    anyhoo...

    My guess would be either nylon or ABS. PVC is used mainly for plumbing if I recall correctly and just from the touch of the material I know it isn't PVC.

  10. #10
    Peach (Level 3)
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    Actually PVC is used in a LOT of stuff...plumbing, storage cases, vinyl siding, even some children's toys (this one has several environmental and health agencies upset). I'm not sure what the hard shell cases that with the red Nintendo logo are made of either. Also, I'm still not sure what material the sleeves are made of. This could be something good for all of us to try to find out, since it could be very beneficial to those who plan to pass these collections on to their children one day.

    Also, STERILITE storage products (Wal-Mart) are made from polypropylene which is totally safe and archival. You can look for the recycle symbol on the bottom of any storage case you find. Look for a "5" in the middle of the symbol and the letters "PP" below it...means it's safe. Polyethylene is also safe and archival.

  11. #11
    Pear (Level 6)  Gideon 's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jajaja
    E-mail Nintendo and ask

    www.nintendo.com
    I'll do it.

    (I'm announcing it here, just so Nintendo doesn't get a bunch of e-mails asking the same question.)

    Before I do, though, should I also ask about Game Boy, SNES, and GameCube cases? Or, are some of those already confirmed?

  12. #12
    Meat Meister Bratwurst's Avatar
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    Nah, don't bother, I already emailed them this morning. They don't know.

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    Peach (Level 3)
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    Yeah, I've actually talked to a couple of people at Nintendo who supposedly "researched" it and called me back. No answers at all. They said that those items had been out of production for too long for any technical info to be available. As a side note, GCN cases are made of polypropylene, which is the safe, archival plastic I was talking about in my last post. You can remove the paper game cover from behind the plastic cover on the case and look on the binding of the case. You will see the recycle symbol with a number "5" in the middle. This denotes the PP construction.

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    Pear (Level 6)  Gideon 's Avatar
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    Hmm, so how do we find out? Maybe there are some chemicals that react differently to different types of plastic, and we could use them on the cases (e.g. turpentine will melt some kinds, but not others).

    It sounds like jd and Damion are in the know. What do you think we should do? Does SkiDragon's suggestion sound about right?

    The community needs this sort of info! We could add it to the knowledge base for everyone to see.

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    Peach (Level 3)
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    I think that is a great idea Gideon. I'm not sure how to go about identifying the material they are made of for certain though. We need someone who is more familiar with chemistry and thermo-plastics. It would be great to know whether the sleeves and cases that so many of us use regularly are truly ARCHIVAL or not. Surely somone has some ideas on how to id these with some certainty.

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    Banana (Level 7) SkiDragon's Avatar
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    The next time I see my chemical engineer friend, I will see if she can tell. Maybe I can ask a professor I had as well, but Im not at school now (summer).
    Rarest games in collection: (R8) Chavez II for SNES / (R7) Star Gunner (Telesys) for Atari 2600
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    Peach (Level 3)
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    That's actually a great idea. Anyone else have access to a chemistry professor or perhaps a plastics plant close by that might have a chemical engineer on staff?

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    Pretzel (Level 4)
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    Thank god my beloved storage drawers are safe!

    I dont plan on just passing my collection on to my children.
    I want my emassed games to last several generations, or as long as they can last.
    I believe someday, cartridge games in general will be difficult to find. I find very few atari carts these days, and its very clear that 2D is going the way of the Vector.
    Keep in mind,Im looking 30-50 years in the future.

    This is just my little theory.
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    Banana (Level 7) googlefest1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdchess
    Yeah, I've actually talked to a couple of people at Nintendo who supposedly "researched" it and called me back. No answers at all. They said that those items had been out of production for too long for any technical info to be available. As a side note, GCN cases are made of polypropylene, which is the safe, archival plastic I was talking about in my last post. You can remove the paper game cover from behind the plastic cover on the case and look on the binding of the case. You will see the recycle symbol with a number "5" in the middle. This denotes the PP construction.
    what a load of crap - they have records - they have to - no company would dump engineering records

  20. #20
    Peach (Level 3)
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    I felt that way too googlefest. It looks like they would have to some sort of records left, but I talked to three different people and got the same story from each one. As you know, as of March of this year, Nintendo officially stopped supporting all of the "Authorized Repair Centers." Most of the centers had alreay stopped doing repairs due to the fact that it wasn't usually profitable, but after March, Nintendo totally removed all these repair center records from their database. They used to be able to tell where the closest repair center was based on your location, but I was told they could no longer do this. I suppose it is possible, but unlikely.

  21. #21
    Peach (Level 3)
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    Perhaps someone else should contact Nintendo and see if you get the same story that I did. It's worth a shot at least.

  22. #22
    Meat Meister Bratwurst's Avatar
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    Well it was no surprise to me, really, since everything was manufactured in Japan, why would Nintendo of America have access to any of that information?

    If someone wanted to light a fire under their ass just ask if the GBA carts and any earlier Nintendo carts/products have PVC in them since you have health concerns regarding your little kids.

  23. #23
    Banana (Level 7) googlefest1's Avatar
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    it dosent matter if the devices were made in another country -- the US like all other countries have government regulations and procedures you have to go through in order to be alowed to release and market a product

    for saftey all kinds of information regarding materials and electronics have to be kept - regulatory affairs

    mabey you could ask to talk to thier regulatory affairs people - they have all that info

    its probably that they just dont want to be bothered by a few concerned customers regarding old products - especialy when they are dealing with getting the revolution and new handheld passed though the system

    especialy when being asked questions about a product whos records were originaly kept on paper - but nintendo is a huge company so i would expect them to have people hiered to digitize old paper records

    like where i work - its a small company so there is a ton of paper records -- but when a concern comes from a customer -someone goes and digs through the pile - but this is a medical device comopany so mabey the company is required to

    also i agree with bratworst - that if you make your concern regarding health then mabey they would go and dig for you

  24. #24
    Peach (Level 3)
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    I spoke to Nintendo again today. the first guy I spoke with just couldn't understand why I wanted to know about the material the sleeves were made out of. He kept saying that I shouldn't care (which really ticked me off by the way). I finally got on the phone with his supervisor, who told me that they were manufactured in Japan and that any info like that would be in Japan and not at Nintendo of America. He also said that there was no way to contact Nintendo in Japan as they do not have a customer service division at headquarters (which I find extremely hard to beileve). Anyway, I know this is all a loadof crap, but there doesn't seem to be a way to get the answer from Nintendo.

  25. #25
    Peach (Level 3)
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    Also, I did express it as a health concern for my kids, which didn't seem to help at all. Perhaps someone else may have better luck contacting Nintendo.

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