Before modding my stick(s), I need some concerns addressed


Disclaimer: I normally follow the rules of “Your question has probably been asked before, so look for it before you post”, but I honestly don’t have any idea what I’d be looking for, be it the title, or reported malfunctions etc.

So here’s my “situation” I’ll call it. I have 2 fightsticks (one TE and one SE) that I am going to be modding in the next week or so, replacing buttons and the joystick and all. I’m going to be putting 8 Seimitsu buttons and a new ball top into my TE stick to prep it for custom artwork. I’m going to be taking the Sanwa buttons out of my TE stick and put them into my SE stick while swapping some plungers to give it a more customized look, and changing the joystick to a Sanwa JLF.

I’ve read NUMEROUS tutorials on how to do this, and it seems a lot simpler than what I originally thought. My concern at this point stems from live examples of people around me who have attempted the same thing. One of them has modded sticks before.

In two different cases, these individuals replaced only the buttons in their TE stick and caused some unexpected things to happen. In both cases, the fightstick would randomly turn on and off, and in one case, he couldn’t hold down-back.

Pretty critical problems occurred allegedly off changing ONLY the buttons. I say allegedly because I personally don’t see any way changing buttons can affect the joystick or causing the stick’s power source to malfunction or whatever happened to it. In the end though, it happened; so I feel the need to address this before I move forward.

So my questions are as follows:
Are these common occurrences for people modding their sticks?
Does it seem plausible that changing only the buttons can cause these problems?
What precautionary steps should I take before I proceed to modding?

Thanks tech guys in advanced!

Well in my case, I have had no problems at all other than having the patience to do the work lol. I have 2 sticks (both TE, a Round 1 and a Round 2), and they work both rather well. My Round 1 has a full Sanwa replacement (Sanwa snap-ins/Joystick) plus both top and bottom art, and my Round 2 has a Semitsu screw-in, top and bottom art replacement (getting joystick later). They both work wonderfully, no issues at all. As for the buttons causing those problems, I can only assume the connections are twisted around, or they messed around with the PCB in some way.

I have never heard anything like that. I mean, it was probably a PCB failure, but changing the buttons has no effect on that. That’s practically one of the safest possible mods you can do. I think they’re just unrelated occurrences. The TE PCBs are known to sometimes fail.

Biggest precaution: Always work in static-free environments. Just set up on a hard desk or table, preferably not with carpeting, and you shouldn’t have any problems with static. It’s dead easy to swap these, and it shouldn’t be terribly problematic.

Simple button swapping shouldn’t affect anything unless you end up screwing the PCB somehow.

When in doubt, it is completely fine to ask a question or two. Yes we rather have some one search though old post first before they post their questions, at the same time if what you find does not anwser your questions or you can’t seem to find anything we rather have you ask. At the same time, if someone post something that was already asked, we will post a link to the corresponding thread.

Most if not everyone here wants to see you succeeded in your projects and goals.

Remember when doing a mod take your time and go 1 part/wire/button or what have you at a time. This way if you make a mistake it is easier to backtrack and redo 1 step that 14 steps. In your case you are doing a button swap, so it is a easy and straight forwards of a mod as can be done. Follow what the others suggest above to stay static free and pace your self. if necessary, write/lable down what color wires go to what buttons prior to stating.

The button wires on SE/TE sticks are colored, so taking a cell phone photo can be handy.
Always pull on the fastener, never the wire. Breaking the connector off the wire can be annoying to deal with.
Have respect for the inside edges of the button holes. I don’t think they’re particularly sharp, but they also haven’t been finished.

I’ve literally taken apart every part of the TE and put it back together, twice ( two different TE’s ) with no problems. Just do it carefully, patiently, and nothing should go wrong.

Thanks for the replies!
This has instilled some confidence in me. =P

Yeah, I have a workbench that I believe to be static-free. I don’t know what my friends did to mess up their sticks, but everything should go well as long as I’m careful.

All I can do now is wait for my parts to come in and then proceed with the modding.

I modded my SE with new buttons and joystick and this is the only advice I have for you. When trying to take off the quick disconnects on the buttons, use some pliers. I first tried to pull them all out with just my fingers and with a lot of strength they wouldn’t all come out. But with some pliers (tug on the metal quick disconnect and not the wire itself) and it came out with ease.

Seconded. Take a photo beforehand. Use a small flathead screwdriver to remove the existing buttons. There shouldn’t be any reason for this to go bad.

Also, if you ever forget, the barrier strip is molded with the button the two wires correspond to.

There’s no way simply changing buttons will cause those problems in a TE. If you’ve read everything you can find here, then you’re in good shape, just make sure you know what wire went where before you touched it. Everything inside the TE also has letters marking all the wires. You should tell your friends to post detailed pictures of the insides of their sticks here, someone will point out what the problem is.

It is always possible that a static discharge will kill a pcb. So remember to touch some conductive metal every so often as you work on your stick.

Would I be able to ground myself on the TE/SE’s bottom cover? It’s made of metal, but I’m not sure if it’s conductive or something. lol

If you want an honest “this is what you should do” about grounding yourself… buy an anti-static bracelet. That said, it shouldn’t be too big a deal so long as you touch some grounded material every so often. The bottom cover could serve that purpose so long as it’s not sitting on an insulated surface.

Think about things you can let go of static electricity by touching, and pick one of those.

So say I buy an anti-static bracelet, where would I connect it to? Everyone says connect it to a metal part of the PC tower while it’s plugged in, but I’m not working on a PC! lol

Note: I’m am very technologically challenged, but I am capable of tinkering with things. I am also not very big on science, so I’m not 100% sure what things around my house are grounded and what isn’t.

Things in metal cases that have three-prong plugs and are off are good targets for grounding. (Turned off so you don’t get any electrical noise in the event of a not-well-designed system.) In reality, anything that will accept and give up electrons works fine if it’s big enough. A metal desk, possibly even just a desk leg is good. Even water can work (though obviously don’t spill the water…) All your water pipes in the house should be grounded if your workspace is in the basement. (Cold water is less likely to burn you…)

You can just use your computer case if it’s a metal case for a desktop computer even if it’s turned on. It should be fine (barring any major screwups in construction or the power supply.)

So I finished modding my TE, and for the 2 minutes I was able to test it, it worked awesome! I gotta thank everyone here for there input. It made the modding go much smoother and I had that much more confidence in what I was doing. Now I just gotta commission some artwork so it can be complete! lol

Next step is to mod my SE stick, which is gonna be replacing the joystick along with it. I haven’t opened it up yet, but I noticed on my TE there was some red glue over the screws, and glue on the connector. How did you guys go about removing these?

PS. My SE stick is a TvC stick that I use on both my Wii and PS3. Is there any difference in process than any other SE stick?

Just peel off the red glue if it gets in the way, or carefully scrape at it with something sharp if it is stuck in the screw head. I have a cheap old metal math compass I use like a dental pick.

What about the glue on the connector for the joystick? Last time I messed with glue on connectors, it was when I was modding my RB drum kit… and that led to some bad times… -_-

Should I just like, dab alcohol on there and wait?