Squeaky fightstick even after applying lubricant


Opened up my Sanwa stick completely and applied lube to the joint(?) of the stick, but it still sqeaks in exactly the same manner after reassemby - downward motions cause squeaks. The stick started doing this fairly shortly after I bought it brand new, so I don’t know how likely it would be that it’s a worn out part. Any suggestions as to what it might be?



It will probably go away after using the stick for a while.


The problem is at least a year old. The squeaking developed very soon after I bought the stick, but I only applied lube the other day, but yeah, it hasn’t really resolved itself in over a year.


Have you removed the pcb assembly to see if the down micro switch squeaks on its own?


Does it make the sound only on certain directions? My JLF used to squeak when i moved to the left on the stick. The problem was one of the microswitches from the pcb assembly. I replaced the pcb assembly on the stick and the problem went away.


Yeah, only on the down motion. And it makes the noise going down and going back up, so it seems like it’s the switch rather than the gate or the joint. Eh, well I think I’ll just leave it until the switch wears itself out or something. Don’t particularly feel like buying new parts.


its only like $12 for the pcb with 4 new microswitches, minus the shipping of course.


A single micro switch is <$3, assuming you can solder.


I don’t think you want to replace one joystick microswitch at a time if you want to keep them in balance. I’d say do at least two at once, OR replace all of them at the same time. Generally, if one switch is showing its age/large wear, the others are probably not far behind unless that one switch was defective to begin with.

(Weird that the squeak is the microswitch… Usually the problems people have are with dried lubricant on the pivot bearings or pivot space.)

I know it’s tough to have ‘only’ one or two bad switches. You’re still generally better off replacing in pairs or all at once for balance’s sake.

I have a 0.187-tab clone joystick I bought last Christmas that has horrible microswitches in it. They’re far too soft and don’t “fire” well when I use the joystick with fighting games. I’m looking to upgrade those with higher-quality brand name microswitches. Funny thing is that I have another copy of the same joystick with the same off-brand microswitches and they work perfectly fine! Sometimes, it’s just the luck of the draw.

The one advantage that a 0.187-tabbed/non-PCB joystick has over a joystick with microswitches soldered into a PCB (“substrate”-type joystick) is the ease of replacing components. You can easily replace microswitches in those control levers without any soldering iron. The switches are held in place by plastic poles that go through holes in the switch casing. With the 0.187-tab levers, you really can replace micros in pairs fairly quick.

The big disadvantage of the 0.187-tab sticks is that you need to buy a harness converter cable ($3) to use them with the current Mad Catz and Hori joysticks unless you want to reverse-engineer/cobble up your own converter. (Making your own harness cable is a pain-in-the-butt, takes a lot more time, AND costs more money than just buying the same thing pre-made. Rule of thumb: If a part you need is readily available and not outrageously expensive, don’t make it yourself, buy it!) The converter cable itself can be a pain-and-a-half to figure out because it hooks up in a specific pattern for correct signal transmission… it may not hook up in the same pattern for every joystick case depending on the manufacturer’s PCB for that specific model of joystick case. 5-prong/PCB joysticks are a lot easier to install in joystick cases. 5-prong sticks are priced the same as 0.187-tab sticks so it’s generally not to your advantage to buy the 0.187-tab sticks unless you have no alternative or like playing with microswitch mods and swap-outs.


Might be worthwhile to open up that switch and spray contact cleaner in it.