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Atari 5200 joystick - rubber boot?


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Hey people.


So, I purchased an Atari 5200 quite a while ago and I'm finally getting around to actually playing with it instead of just passively owning it. It came with three (THREE!) joysticks, and the rubber boot is either partially or fully torn off on two of them. The joystick with the fully intact rubber boot is, suspiciously, the only one that springs back to the middle when you let it go.


Is the rubber boot really the only thing that makes the joystick spring back to anywhere near the center?


I've looked around a bit and I see things that seem to hint that this is the case, but I just want to confirm there isn't something else wrong with these before I place a Best Electronics order for new boots (they also need new flex circuits, because of course they do.)


I apologize if this is a stupid question. It just seems like there HAS to be something more. Maybe I've just fixed enough 2600 joysticks in my time that the idea of the boot being anything but an ornamental hunk of rubber is something my mind can't accept. :)








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