Movable Button Layup


Good day. I’ve been working on a few projects of my own, and this is the most difficult one, yet most rewarding one. I was keeping it to myself, but figure I could get further and with better quality with outside help and ideas.

Basic principle - we know the Street fighter buttonlayout - we know the PSX/2 variant 8 button. We have games like Tekken with 4 buttons in a square, games like SNK ones where the buttons are layed out in a line, VF with 3 buttons, and the MK series with its 5 button layout.

I know its not just my idea to make a controller which can replicate all these simultaenously. Previously I ‘curled’ my buttons and added an extra button south/west of the short button for SNK games - hower it was still difficult to play MK, and still didn’t feel right. so I decided to dedicate brain power to solving this. The requirements.

No ‘removalable’ parts.
Quick reconfiguration.
As Clean looking as possible.
Very Durable.

I’ve come up with plans for a prototype, unfortunatly, I don’t have the upload power at work, so I’ll try to ‘explain it’ as best I can.

When you drill a stick you typically do two holes, one over the other with a certain distance between them. the first change for this design invovles changing this mindset. Instead - FIVE holes are drilled.

Typical setup
== <- top of box

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== <- bottom
My concept

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So basically the drills will partially overlap each other. Already this will allow you to move buttons around. Doing this alone allows a reconfigurable setup, but its not …honestly good looking. Functional though. Simply use a hinge on the bottom of the box and thumb screws to seal the top, so its very easy to to open, yet still secure. The final drilling will look something like this:

o o

( ) ( ) ( ) ( )
( ) ( ) ( ) ( )
( ) ( ) ( ) ( )
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where the o are tumb screws and the ## are screws from the hinge. whe nyou want to reconfigure, just open, untwist plastic ring on pushbutton, pull button up enough to move to the proper slot, put back in and twist. Any unwanted buttons can just be placed at the very top hole, or , an extra cut can be made on the top button, which would allow for the button to slide thru - the button ultimatly being left to lay there inside the box. edit stupid forum is fuckin up my text drawings

“But Unreal - my box will look busted”.

Here is where the thinking started popping up. How do we fill those holes? I’ve got a workign solution, but I’m listening and hopiung on here I can find either a better option or something easier to produce than my idea.

Turn the board over and with a really sharp pencil, use it as a stencil on a piece of paper. Use this to cut out filler pieces. Each piece should be designed to fill in a small area. Each button will have a specific one since some buttons will not have a ‘top’ or ‘bottom’. A box as short as possible needs to be made, this box will be attached to the underside of the top board. Put the pieces where they belong on the board. Attach springs, various websites sell them, I’m stil ltrying to find just the right one, to each piece. Attach the box to this. You’ll have to toy with the tension to get it ‘exact’.


Paint and play. Simply press down when transferring the button, and ‘hopefully’ it will spring back when the btuoon is later moved to another sonfiguration. Let me know what you think, horrible idea, wayts to improve, etc.

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it’ll look weird. and instead of making filler pieces you could get some button plugs and file them down.

how about doing the previous layout you did, but using that idea you have only on the areas you’d need to? (probably middle, for the mk layout)


Well its derived from my portable MAMe concept - which will run more than just SF-esque games. I can only speak for myself, but having extra buttons just funks up my other games. Plugs would prolly work best as filler pieces, though I still want them to be able to ‘move out the way’ without being ‘removable’. I’m trying to set it up so that I odn’t worry about losing parts, otehrwise I’d just do removable button ‘packs’ that attach to rails, but then I have a bunch of ‘blox’ to keep track of.

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Got any links so we can take a look at the actual work? My friend and I were devising a way to do multi-fighter config setups, but our method involved having replaceable button boards that fit into one universal sized spot we cut for the buttons…worked okay, but felt a bit unstable, and we just popped quick disconnects onto whatever button board we wanted to use. Tedious, but workable


No pics yet as I haven’t made it, startijng soon though.

I thoguht about the removable setup, but like I said, I’m trying to not have ‘pieces’, and I also noticed that I could never get it ‘stable/durable’ - at least in feel. I’d have to find a way to ‘lock’ the pieces in with that setup.

Another option is the ‘sliding button’ setup gone threw a dozen ideas. You can double the height of the area for buttons, then set it up so that the pieces can slide up and down, then ‘click’ into certain set positions - possible with some sort of rod that goes thru all the pieces at predetermined spots. Arguably the best setup I thought up, but not as flexible in terms of number of buttons.

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how about just make different “covers” that have alternate pcb and button layouts.
may not be the most effecient way of accomplishing your goal, but it sounds more stable than multiple pieces.




I’m not using multiple pieces in my original design, thats one of the goals - no loose pieces.

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