JLF without restrictor gate durability

I’ve seen people say that using a JLF w/o a gate will “ruin it” or “damage the microswitches”. Why is this the case? The switches get pushed in more, but will that really hurt anything? The plastic on plastic contact will take centuries before it wears down the switch cases.

The only durability issue I can see is that the bushing on the shaft will wear faster since it contacts the switch cases (which become the gate) at their corner, so it’s more PSI at that point (versus the wider surface on a real gate). I guess the switch case corner could wear a slight groove into the bushing where it contacts. I’d also guess this will take decades.

Has anyone actually ever used a JLF with no gate for a long term and had an issue happen due to the wear and tear specifically because there was no gate?

Is there an issue in running a JLF with no gate that isn’t the case with other microswitch sticks which either have no gate (and are designed for it; of course I understand the difference) or have their gate removed (I have seen this recommended for other sticks that have gates but with the JLF pointed out as it not being a good idea for).

I’m looking for someone with experience with this, not just telling me what they have heard.

I have no problem with the square gate, I am used to it. I just can’t figure out why the JLF supposedly gets damaged when used with no gate. I was just toying around with one gateless and it feels freaking amazing. Better than the sticks that don’t have a gate stock, IMO.

I’m almost wondering why a gateless JLF isn’t recommended more to people that like gateless sticks with a wide feel. It’s much different than Octo or even a smaller circle gate. I’m sure there is a reason, but I’d like to know why, if only to learn more about the JLF.

Thanks for any help.

The gate stops the actuator from physically hitting the switch body.
I agree, with the amount of force some people use, they very well would damage the switch assembly.

The gate also holds the PCB and microswitches in place so they don’t fall down. If you get rid if the gate you’d need to find another way to make sure that they stay up and don’t fall down.

If you want to simulate not having a gate I guess you could take a dremmel and open up the gate wider so the actuator doesn’t ride the gate. But it can still hold everything in place.

It’s a JLF, you don’t have to take the entire restrictor plate assembly out, just take out the gate itself.


If you use JLF-TM like a cool person, you can’t even keep the microswitches in place without it!

I love the square gate and don’t want to ruin it. I just also love gateless and thought it would be cool to be able to do both without having to buy and modify another gate.

But I am mainly asking for general purposes, not myself. I like the square gate, but many people do not. The JLF doesn’t have a circle gate option without dremeling, so I was wondering of going gateless would be a good recommendation. It does feel awesome.

If durability is an issue I am just wondering why it is the case for the JLF but not other microswitch sticks. Just looking at the stick itself I can’t see how anything could get damaged by using it gateless. Although I agree with the comment that players that use a lot of excessive force can damage the switch body by slamming into it. But isn’t this also the case with microswitch sticks designed to be used without a gate?

The JLF I have attaches the microswitches to the PCB with screws. It still works with the gate removed.

I’m just trying to learn a few things about the JLF and how it works and shouldn’t be used (and why).

There may be a good reason for not using it gateless, I just want to have it explained to me. If it is just a rumor that has been passed down, it would be cool to get to the bottom of it circle gate/gateless fans can use a JLF that way without being scared out of it by misinformation.

you already removed the gate and screwed in the pcb so it won’t move. Why not try it yourself? Turn the CP upside down and see what happens to the microswitches if you forcibly move the stick side to side?

I did try it myself. I played on it gateless for a few hours and inspected the stick from inside the case while moving it around. I can’t see any way it would get damaged from play unless the microswitch houses wear down on the actuator bushing faster since they contact at a corner. The switches are definitly mounted well enough that they won’t move around.

But I have seen several people claim that playing a JLF gateless will ruin it somehow. I’m just trying to figure out why or dismiss it as a rumor. A very angry player would have to slam the stick very hard to cause the actuator to break the plastic housing of a microswitch, but this may be a common occurance.

the plastic isnt as durable as you may think. there isnt much holding the micro switches in place if you apply too much pressure on the actual housing you can wear the plastic housing causing it to get brittle and eventually break. I dont see it happening too much but then again… there is a reason why the JLF’s are built the way they are why mess with it.

there will be a round gate available soon for the JLF’s btw…

That’s good news about the circle gate. I’m keeping the square on my only JLF but I am going to mod another stick soon and install a JLF with a circle gate when it comes out.

I’m a new member but have lurked here on and off for a long time, I know your work Blind, so I know your opinion is based on experience with the JLF. Thanks.

What microswitch joysticks out there allow for contact between the actuator and the microswitch body?

American joysticks don’t have a gate on the bottom to restrict the movement of the actuator like Japanese sticks, but they do have a circle shaped hole on top of the joystick housing that restricts the movement of the joystick shaft.

If you took a razor and a small thin screw driver, it is possible to pry the microswitch open. With repeated gate less use it is concievable that the microswitch body could slowly be damaged over time if the actuator is banged up pretty hard against it over time. Imagine fuckers like these on your joystick.

Thanks for the comments guys. That makes sense.