Well, it looks like I’m on my own on this one, let the testing begin.
Just to give some background, I play a lot of SHMUPS (shoot-em ups) and having a tight and heavy stick with an octagonal gate (restrictor plate) is generally preferable. At first I was going to try a Seimitsu LS-56 (because it has a heavier throw and tighter actuation), but it looks like that would be a bit more work for the Picade. Instead I’m planning on trying a Sanwa JLF with a larger actuator and heavier spring.
I spent some time today trying to figure this all out. From what I can tell, the stick included with the Picade is a Sanwa JLF clone. I extracted an actual Sanwa JLF from my Japanese arcade cabinet and the stick from my completed Picade and did some comparisons and the measurements seem to be very close. I’ve recorded some of the noticeable differences below:
- JLF allows for gate exchange while the Picade stick is stuck with a square gate
- The shafts are slightly different - JLF is around 43mm total length and Picade is around 44mm.
- The top screw for the ball/battop is slightly longer on the JLF (~10.2mm JLF vs 10mm Picade)
- The wiring is the same so none of the wiring should need altering!
- The JLF has a tighter spring taking more force to activate a direction
- The ball top that is included with the Picade seems to fit the JLF just fine
The one thing I’m not sure about is whether the mounting plate attached to the Picade stick is a clone of the Sanwa JLF-P1 plate included with Sanwa JLF-TP-8YT sticks. If it is, that would be great because then you can just drop the Sanwa in, plug in the cable and be good to go. If not then you’ll need to remove the mounting plate from the Picade stick and mount it to the JLF which is slightly more work, but not too bad. I will be ordering an official Sanwa JLF-TP-8YT shortly so I’ll respond once more after I’ve received it and installed it.
Here are some images showing the two side by side (the one with the plate is the Picade stick):
Edit: looks like Pimoroni is only allowing me one image per post, oh well, more to follow.