Help - First time customizing fightstick



I have an HORI RAP V3 and an HORI RAP 4 KAI. I would like to customize both of them by adding a clear Plexi with etching and an artwork print under it.
I’m hesitating about changing the buttons, the default ones are good but feel sticky and loose. I would prefer more resistant buttons with a surface similar to the PS4 controller sticks.
Oh and I live in Switzerland.

So I know what I want but now… how, where and what ?
I looked for a shop that can prepare the plexi and let me choose the etching, I found this :
They ship in Europe and I can buy the plexi and the artwork there. Are they good ? Is there a better alternative for me in Europe ?
Their tutorial is pretty clear, I understand how I should give them the etching for the plexi but I’m not 100% sure how to prepare the artwork.

Now my first question, I saw that every fightstick is a bit different. **How will I add the plexi ? **
I guess I must open the stick, take the buttons and the joystick off. Take off the metal plate and… ? I didn’t find a tutorial for the V4 Kai but I’m guessing it is similar than other HORI stick but I’m not sure.

Let’s say I want to change my buttons for the reason I described above. What should I get ? Sanwa, I heard they are better? (Because the defaults are kuro)
The connections are the same between buttons brands, right ? I don’t need to change the PCB ? (because if I must, I will not change the buttons)

The HAYABUSA joystick is great. It is a bit sticky but sturdy so unless I want another color I won’t change it.

I’m sorry if I could find the answers elsewhere on the forum.
Some of my questions are very specific so I just ask everything directly.

I hope you will be able to help me :slight_smile:



1# Acrylic Etching and artwork preparation: Neither of which are all too exotic, so go pick up your phone book and call your local print (or sign) shops, telling them you’ll need self-adhesive vinyl prints and some laser cut acrylic. Chances are you may stick around as the laser’s going back and forth, which happens to be kinda fun to watch. Order from Tec, if it’s the “support the community” idea, you’re going for.

2# As for mounting, from what I remember, the screw hole position hasn’t changed between interations (although you ought to check that in praxis). Take a look at this particular post and you’ll notice there’s six screws in the metal plate to work with plus the outer plastic rim of the actual case. So basically once you’ve removed the stock sticker, remove the screws, mark the hole locations, drill some holes and you’re done (although it’s easier to have them cut on the laser was well).

3# Finding buttons that meet your specifications may be the biggest challenge: While there’s a variety of models to choose from (including different actuation points and springback), I can’t think of any that incorporate a somewhat rough surface; pretty much all of them are straight up flat, sleek plastic caps straight out of the mold. Kinda similar to PBT vs. ABS plastic for keyboard keycaps, with the former beeing somewhat rare.


Too bad I don’t have that in my region. They places where I can do acrylic etching or laser cutting only do that for very specific reasons (car windshield, metal plate with our names beside the doorbell etc). None of them do custom demands.
As for the vinyl print, I have a print company that does it BUT I have to order a minimum amount (like 50…).

I guess that part won’t be hard to figure out then :slight_smile:

I understand that my specifications are a bit to specific. What if I limit myself to a more sturdy button ? What I mean by that is that I like some resistance when I press it, similar to mechanical keyboard for gamers.
The buttons just feels kinda loose right now.

Thanks for your help :slight_smile:


If it’s just the feel of the button press, (as opposed to the tactile feel of the plastic finish), that’ll be easy then: Stock Seimitsu Buttons already offer slightly more resitance compared to what a sanwa button feels like and then, - a step up from that - you’d be looking at PAS’ OBS-MX Buttons (only available in 30mm) or Gamefinger’s HBFS-30/24 Buttons, both of which use actual cherry-mx switches, as with every other mechanical keyboard out there.
So in a nutshell you could either go with the stock Seimitsus, hunt down Seimitsus/Sanwas with different switches (a couple different options available over at Akishop), of just straight-out go with these Cherry switch-based ones, which - in my opinion - is probably the best idea since it’s more likely that you’re familiar with the feel of these, instead of highly exotic japanese microswitches.


“These” ? You talking about which ones ? :wink:
I looked up cherry buttons and apparently they have a certain resistance which is what I am looking, thank you. :smiley:
Now, I just need to know what brand I should take


1.) Yeah, they’re great. Not sure about European options but Art’s Hobbies is an awesome site.

2.) Art has specific plexi cuts for every kind of major joystick (he has both plexis for both your sticks) under his “Products” page.

3.) Sanwa’s the industry standard but that doesn’t mean you’ll love it as much as the rest of the community. I personally prefer Seimitsu as they’re not as sensitive and have a more satisfying pressing feel imo. Others like Gamerfinger because of the high quality and use of MX Cherry switches, however they are more expensive than the 2 standard Japanese brands.
No you don’t need to change the PCB unless you plan on modding for compatibility with another console.

4.) You don’t need to change the entire stick if you want a different color, you can just change the balltops, shaft cover, and/or dustwasher.


So I guess the buttons for me are Cherry MX™ Black (30mm I’m guessing) ? (
Seems to have a greater resistance :slight_smile:


Yeah if you want as close to a mechanical keyboard feel then that’s probably what you would wanna go with.


Thanks :slight_smile: I will try that then.
I just noticed that the HRAP V3 SA KAI has Sanwa buttons and they don’t feel much better than the HRAP V4 KAI with the Kuro buttons.
Anyway, I will work on the plexi and the cover. Then I will order the buttons.

8x 30mm (and 1x 25mm if I want to change the “start” button too ;)) for each fightstick.

Any last advice ?


You should be set, just follow a typical mod guide you can find anywhere and if you’re unsure just ask any of us here. Also the Kuro are premium buttons so they’re designed to compete with Sanwa, it comes down to preference.

Is your V3-SA for PS3? If so then you can also use your HRAP4 Kai on the PS3 if you’d rather only spend money modding 1 stick.


Yes it is the PS3 version. I will only mod the V4 for now and if it is a success I will mod the other :wink:


Yeah man save yourself some money. Also if you got an extra $2 to spare try the Hayabusa Octopus restrictor gate, it’s awesome. If they have an imperfect run you can snatch one for $0.75.


I will look into it since I don’t know what it is…
But DAMN the GameFinger HBFS I can’t find them ANYWHERE. I tried 20 website (at least) and they are either not solf OR out of stock :frowning:
I can get the Cherry MX switch but I don’t know what to buy with it to “build” the button. I need a cap and base but what are the names ? Where to find them ? It’s hard ! ^^


Focus Attack has some of the colored ones in stock.

Though I’m not sure if they will ship to Switzerland


Oh yeah I only checked the black or white. I guess I have to think of a colored cover.


Akishop has them in stock and they ship internationally.

FA also ships internationally but you’d have to wait for them to restock.


On Akishop it’s the red microswitch but I “need” the black one. That’s my big issue.


You’ll most likely have to buy a button with the red switches and then buy the black switches separately and swap them out. I’ve never seen a switch-less button or buttons that have different switches, instead of the red. If you go that route, I would check other sources for the individual switches. The arcade stick vendors charge a good deal more than say a mechanical keyboard vendor, or eBay.


Both the gamefinger and the osb-mx’s offer a couple of switch (color) options, but they’re pretty much restricted to the big four or five as well. Black shouldn’t be a problem tho.


I believe the Razer MX Orange and Green switches work in the Gamerfingers as well.