You’re on the right board, so good news!
Read the rules and stickies BUT you’re not asking something that’s been asked a million times in the past week. You’re only about the third person this week asking about this joystick. Another fellow asked about the Saturn version of it a day or two ago!
Don’t worry – it’s such an obscure joystick relatively speaking that there isn’t a lot written about it on SRK. Most of the SRK FAQ’s and Tutorials cover the joysticks released since 2004 with not much coverage on 1990s-era joysticks like the you have in that pictures.
With the motherboard PCB of the Hori Fighting Stick gone or broken(?), you definitely need a new PCB. I don’t know about that USB/PS2 encoder thing they’re selling online – no idea of the quality of that product. Something similar to that product was announced in another thread but I don’t see how it can be used to fix this joystick. My understanding is that it’s not so much a console/controller interface so much as a link between console-specific joysticks and JAMMA/MAME/other arcade hardware. I don’t know that the encoder PCB would work directly with a PS2 controller that lacks a motherboard PCB in other words… New news to me!
I HAD that style of joystick once; I actually had the Saturn Hori Fighting Stick SS but it was virtually identical to the PS1 model. Just a few wiring differences, different system plug, and Select button on the PS1 model – otherwise they were practically the same joystick.
Here’s the bad news – the original buttons were contact buttons that registered hits through pressure on black-covered electrical spots on the PCB. Most D-pads are still the same way. With joysticks, as the cases got bigger and nicer, they switched to arcade parts and went to quick disconnect line connections. QD’s generally work better for joystick buttons than pressure registration. QD buttons are generally softer-feeling and more responsive than pressure-contact buttons.
IF you really want to reuse that joystick case with a new PCB, you have to get new buttons with terminals that connect through quick disconnect lines unless you can repair that original PCB/motherboard. I don’t know the spacing between the buttons on that Hori joystick case anymore – I haven’t owned a joystick like this one in close to five years now(!) – but I suspect it’s marginal and might not work for 30mm Sanwa or Seimitsu buttons. You’d almost certainly be looking at enlarging the button holes to fit in wider buttons which may or may not work with this joystick case. You’d need a step-up/drill tool to do this with any accuracy.
Forget about the Turbo buttons… Unless you have a copy of the original PCB, they won’t work with a replacement PCB. They’re cheap levers like most Turbo switches are and were held in place by the original Hori PCB if I remember correctly. Most replacement PCB’s don’t support Turbo functions. It’s just not generally needed.
Space in that joystick case is tight from what I remember. Any replacement PCB has to be relatively small. Good news is that most replacement PCB’s on-market will probably fit that case with good space management. Bad news: only two replacement PCB’s directly support PS2/backwards compatibility. Which you choose depends on the level of functionality you want. PS360+ is best if you plan on using a joystick with an XBox 360 in addition to a PS2 and PS3; the MC Cthulu is a significantly less expensive choice and better if you don’t plan on using this controller with an XBox 360.
You’d be better off reusing the original control lever/joystick in that joystick case than trying to fit a JLF or Seimitsu LS-series joystick. The case is tight and designed so you’d have to literally create a mounting to fit an alternate joystick into that case IF you can find a model that can be integrated (LS-33? Ascii clone joystick? Another Hori joystick lever?). That most likely means drill holes and flush rivet studs.
The size and internal arrangement of a lot of 1990s joystick cases really works against rehabbing them for the most part or upgrading with arcade-quality parts. On the other hand, if you do have something nice you appreciate like the Hori Namco PS1 joystick OR a Dreamcast Agetec Joystick or even this one – and I think a couple of SRK members have done things with this style joystick --, you might make that extra bit of work turn in your favor. (I modded three Agetec cases – that was enough to cure of any more impulses to mod more retro-joystick cases!)
*** You might want to take pictures of the motherboard in its current state (IF you still have it!) and show it to other SRK members. *** A couple of these guys are electricians/electrical engineers and might have suggestions on how to fix it IF it’s salvageable! You might not have to spend a lot of money to fix this joystick… A lot of joysticks just develop small problems that can be cured with TLC if you don’t want to gut them out and refit them. You’d be able to save everything and use in original stock condition presuming there’s nothing but a minor problem with the joystick in the first place…