Project: Interface – installation complete

Fightstick Custom Artwork
Fightstick Custom Artwork

That’s it! After a whole day, I’ve finally completed installing my new sanwa parts and updated my custom artwork. Mind you, this is the first time I’ve modded my joystick to this extent.

My original fightstick
My original fightstick

As you can see from the image above, my buttons are different to the retail boxed version of the Fightstick. This is because I changed to Sanwa buttons very early on as the original ones were too weak for my… skillful button mashing… >.> But I never actually changed the stick and a few months ago, I noticed it would intermittently register me holding onto a direction for longer than when I released it (my character would walk a little before stopping…). So that was due for a replacement – not to mention I want to try out an octo gate restrictor.

New custom artwork
New custom artwork

I had to buy a couple of items for this project – a hobby knife, cutting mat, metal ruler and the parts. This all cost me roughly £50. The most expensive was obviously getting the artwork printed (great quality printed by Utopia Signs).

What I bought
What I bought

I started off by cutting around the guides to make way for the joystick and buttons. I picked up a tip online which was to cut a cross in the middle of a circle so that you can cut a quarter at a time. It was good to start off with but once I got the hang of using a hobby knife, I was quite confident in cutting full circles.

Tip on cutting circle
Tip on cutting circle

After cutting the holes, I proceeded to open up my fightstick. So remembering my past experience, I unscrewed the back panel first.

Back panel
Back panel

I was then faced with the familiar insides of my fightstick… it’s been a while since I’ve seen this. I was looking at the glue (the red squishy stuff) and planned my move ahead.

Inside the fightstick
Inside the fightstick

At this point I thought “maybe I should change my restrictor gate whilst my desk isn’t that messy…”. So I went ahead and changed it.

Sanwa octo gate
Sanwa octo gate

After that, I took out the buttons, the joystick and the top panel. Disconnecting the joystick and panel was a lot easier than I thought it would be.

Loose
Loose

This freed up the space required for me to peel off the current artwork. Well… it felt more like I was ripping it off. The glue was VERY adhesive. Having a flathead screw driver will help with the initial bits.

Removing original artwork
Removing original artwork

There was a lot of glue left so I decided to take out the big lumpy bits only. I stuck the artwork on and realised I had covered the holes for the screws… So I had to rip that off (lucky I was sent two!) and went back to cut circles again. I finally stuck the artwork on. Using the panel from the inside as a template, I was able to cut this shape out easily. Maybe next time, I won’t print out the cutting guides as the template wasn’t accurate leaving me with some ugly semi transparent guides. Instead, I will print it full bleed without the cutting guides and just use the inside of the panel as a cutting guide.

Stuck on new artwork
Stuck on new artwork

After that it was a case of reversing what I had done, pop in my new buttons and joystick. Despite the inaccurate cutting guides and slightly bubbly surface, I’m really happy with my first mod of a joystick! Now to get used to an octo gate.

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