Thursday, November 9, 2023

How to Customize Your Mayflash F500 V2 Fightstick


So Street Fighter 6 got my interests piqued for modern console fighters once again and now my niece has taken a strong interest in the genere and began to dabble with the game. Struggling to wrap their head around the Classic control scheme, they have become fairly proficient using the Modern control scheme, which saddens my cold black jaded heart. So I decided to take it upon myself to build them their very own fightstick with artwork from their favorite comic series to hopefully get them accustomed to classic arcade control scheme. 

My logic is that with a 6-8 button setup the and a good joystick, the traditional Classic control scheme will make a bit more sense to them. I know it's going be a struggle to have to learn input timing, but I'm hoping to get them a fightstick that they would want to play all of their games on. Since they have access to a PS4, Xbox One and a Nintendo Switch, I opted to get the Mayflash F500 V2 base model, the Mayflash F500 Elite was more expensive and it did not make sense to gut a stick that already had authentic arcade parts.  I will show you how to replace all of the buttons, replace the joystick with a Sanwa joystick and add custom artwork. 


Attempt at your own risk!

DO NOT ATTEMPT unless you have some technical skills and can follow instructions. This walkthrough is as simplified as I can make it so if none of my instructions makes any sense then please DO NOT ATTEMPT.

This project will void your warranty.

Tool Needed:
(x1) Phillips Screwdriver
(x1) Flathead Screw Driver
(x1) Wire cutter/Side cutters

Parts Needed:
(x1) Sanwa JLF joystick
(x8) 30mm push buttons
(x1) 24mm push button
(x1) Precut Artwork from Focusattack

Most of these parts are easily accessible from many websites. I like Focusattack & if they don't have the parts I need, I usually head over to Paradise Arcade Shop. Find your favorite website. 

I stuck with Sanwa JLF because I had plenty of spares stick in my inventory, but I ended up going with Sanwa buttons mainly because I wasn't planning on inserting artwork into the buttons. I wanted to keep this mod simple and easy.  I utilized Focusattack's custom print and cut artwork service and had them print out my artwork for this stick. It was well worth the time and money, strong recommend.  


Take your fightstick out of the box and set aside all of the extra harness parts, keep foam attached to the sticks.  By using the foam blocks, you place the fightstick facing down without risking scratching the balltop or the plexi cover. 

STEP 2: Flip the fightstick over and place onto of the foam. Take a phillips screwdriver and remove the 6 screws from the metal base. Place the screws into a container for safe keeping. 

STEP 3: Remove the metal base to reveal the inside of the fightstick. Take this moment to familiarize how everything is hooked up. Take plenty of references photos of how the buttons are wired up. Use the wire cutters to separate the joystick harness from the main harness. 

STEP 4: Locate the main pcb and gently remove the joystick harness from the pcb from the 4 points marked "UP, DOWN, LEFT & RIGHT." 

STEP 5: First, take a flathead screw driver and remove the "C" clip from the joystick shaft.  Pull the joystick shaft out of the housing and set aside. There are 4 screws holding the joystick in place. Take a phillips screw driver and remove the four screws and secure the loose screws into a container. Remove the joystick housing from the fightstick. 

STEP 6: Label your cables or take plenty of reference photos. You will notice that the harness to the buttons are two separate harnesses with the one harness going to the back four buttons and the next harness is for the front 4 buttons.  They are setup in pairs, just jot down the wiring pattern. 

Now, using a flathead, gently place the flathead underneath the button connector and twist, then carefully pull away the connectors from the buttons. 

STEP 7: With the wiring removed, take your small flathead and push into the 2 tabs holding the push buttons and then push out the button from the back. Don't forget the 20mm Start button!  

Gather all of the buttons to either save or trash; user's choice. :)

STEP 8: Now that all of the buttons and the joystick have been removed from the fightstick fascia, gently pull off the plexi cover, which is only held onto the fightstick case via magnets. 

STEP 9: Since I had my artwork sent in and printed by Focusattack, all I have to do is pop out the holes and lay the perfectly fitted artwork onto the fightstick.  Now that the artwork is installed, just snap the magnetic cover back into place, to protect your artwork. 

If you went the old school route and just printed your art work, then use the plexi cover as your template and mark your holes and then use a scissors or a sharp X-acto knife to trim down your artwork.  

STEP 10: All of my 30mm buttons are snap-in style push buttons. I arranged my buttons to match the Xbox style controllers. The 24mm Start button is the screwbutton style. Just drop the button and tighten down the plastic nut. 

STEP 11: Install your joystick, secure with the 4 screws and slide in the joystick shaft and insert the "C" clip to secure the stick. Plug in the 5 pin Female to Female harness into the main PCB, and plug the other end into the Sanwa JLF pcb. 

Now reconnect all of your push buttons and make sure everything is connected and secure. 

Optional Mod: While I've come around on to Square restrictor plates, this will be the best time to change out your restrictor plate

STEP 12: Flip the Fightstick over and place it onto the packing foam. Line up the metal base plate and secure it with the 6 screws.

FINAL STEP: Slide in your dust washer and screw on your balltop. If you can get your balltop on tightly, remove the bottom plate and use the flathead screwdriver to secure the shaft while you tighten the balltop. 
At this point, you have upgraded your push buttons and joystick with actual arcade hardware and you will get great use out of your customized Fightstick. Enjoy!

--Nathan Bias

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