The stick is finished! A good amount of time was spent sourcing tools and waiting to use the lab or work shop.
The final stick sports:
★ Carbon and glass fibre sandwich construction.
★ Exterior is clear coated carbon fibre with 3 red and gold pin stripes (made in germany!).
★ 6mm clear acryl base plate.
★ 6 rubber feet with screws.
★ Multi-fit mounting plate: Will fit both Seimitsu LS-32-01 and Sanwa JLF-TP-8YT joysticks.
★ Both Sanwa and Seimitsu brand screw-in buttons work.
Stick and buttons:
★ Seimitsu LS-32-01 joystick.
★ Clear Seimitsu ball top.
★ 8 x 30mm clear white Seimitsu buttons on the surface.
★ 1 x 30mm white Seimitsu button on the rear as PS3 home and 360 guide button.
★ 2 x 24mm white Seimitsu buttons on the rear as start/back.
★ Dual PCB Xbox 360 and Chtulhu.
★ Works with Xbox 360 / PC / PS3 / PS2 / PS1 / Gamecube / Wii (via Gamecube ports) / Xbox1
★ RJ-45 mod: Only one cable at a time, different cables for the systems will all fit to the same jack.
★ Quick disconnects for all buttons: Each button can be swapped easily.
★ Inter-PCB connection via SUB-D 25 connector: Each PCB can be removed separately.
I wired the buttons to the PCBs to mirror the MadCatz SF IV sticks:
X Y RB LB
A B RT LT
 /\ R1 L1
X O R2 L2
Y X L
B A R
Start = Start
Select = Z
X Y white LT
A B black RT
Start = Start
Select = Back
Select + X = Left stick click
Select + A = Right stick click
Select + Stick = Left and right analog sticks
So the 360 PCB and the MC Cthulhu board are connected so that RB/LB on the 360 ‘equal’ R1/L1 on the PS3 and RT/LT ‘equal’ R2/L2.
For the PS3 this is also the same layout as the one of the HORI Real Arcade Pros.
The buttons use quick disconnects so the layout can be changed easily. One could also change the lines at the Cthulhu’s screw terminals.
Decided to paint the interior glossy black. The exterior received a first layer of clear coat. On top of it the case received 3 pin stripes in red and gold. When discussing the colors we decided for black, red and gold as their our national colors – made in germany. Pretty international project: Stick + buttons from japan, 360 PCB ordered in the UK, Chtulhu made in the USA.
Preparing the case for the paint job. Initially the interior was not intended to be painted. But it also received a special treatment to increase its roughness to be able to mount parts on the inside. Trying to decide on a color, black is the first thing that springs to mind. But a colored contrast would be nice, too.
Finished the soldering job on the PCB interconnection. We started with the MadCatz 360 PCB. But then we couldn’t resist to go dual PCB and I ordered a Cthulhu from Toodles along with an Imp electronic switch. The Imp board (the small black PCB in the picture) switched to the 360 PCB when you press the guide button while plugging in the USB cord. So now we have a brain for the stick. Or two to be exact.
The carbide plated hole saws finally arrived and were put to their use. The top right corner served as a guinea pig. Smooth sailing.
Preparations for actually building the case were finished and we could start working with the actual carbon and glass fibres and the resin. Friendly company cs.federleicht let us use their work shop to build the case and the rest of the stick from here.
More parts arrived: Glass fibre in white and black (pictured) and resin (not pictured) for the case.
Got embarassed that they didn’t send a coil but packaged the fabrics into plastic bags. What you want is a surface as smooth as possibe and not a folded hanky *sigh*. That’s what you get for ordering small amounts.
Today I soldered the PCB together with a friend. Wired the buttons as well – until I ran out of cable. So the last 7 connections are missing. The cables run from the PCB to a terminal strip and from there to the buttons. Quick disconnects are used for the buttons. I tested all cables soldered to the PCB and all connections work – a small wonder considering this was our first time to solder.
Now where to put all the fancy buttons? Before finalizing the case design I wanted to try button layouts. slagcoin.com is a treasure chest for all things arcade stick and he has got a large number of layouts complete with detailed measurements. The Sega Astro layout really is a winner for me.
Some gamers seem to prefere a 6 button layout and say that the additional 2 are disturbing. Also, no BEU needs 8 buttons. I think I’ll go with 8 buttons though as I want to build a stick that works with the 360 and I can use LT/RT for dashboard navigation. It will later always still be an option to NOT drill the additional 2 holes.