Nintendo Switch Joysticks on Other Consoles

GingerOfOz

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20180524_182624.jpg

3DS sliders have been the norm for most Wii portables for just about forever, but understandably people have been searching for options more akin to standard joysticks for reasons of comfort. Nintendo Switch joysticks are an obvious source of interest because of their size, but up until recently they've been around $30 apiece. With the warranties on Switches running out though, many sellers have begun cropping up on eBay selling the same sticks for $5-7, which is much more reasonable for our projects. I just got off the workbench and I can confirm that they work just great with GC+

Here's what you need to know:
  • The traces on the ribbon connector are made out of carbon as opposed to copper. This means that you cannot solder to them, because attempting to do so will ruin the trace and it won't bond with solder at all. We also can't crack it open like we can with the old 3DS sliders in order to get to a place that we can solder. This means that we, at the very least, need a connector for the cable that we can solder to. The ribbon cable is a 5 pin, 0.5mm pitch cable and it is 0.3mm thick. Any connector that meets these specs should work, but I picked up a handful of these guys and they work perfectly. In addition to a connector, you may also want a little breakout board to make soldering up wires an easier task. Soldering to just the connector wasn't any fun and I definitely wouldn't trust the soldering job I did to hold up for an extended period of time, so I've got a few little boards coming in the mail within the week to make my life easier. Once I'm certain they work with the connector I'll post the files here if anyone else wants them.
  • The pinout for the joystick looks like this:
QZCymI7.jpg

Unfortunately I can't find the source I got this from, but it was a Github thread with tons of information about the Switch in general. I can confirm that it is correct.
  • The Switch joysicks do have a button inside of them for L3/R3/whatever and it is connected to ground when pressed.
  • The screwposts have a diameter of 1.5mm
  • Don't poke the rubbery cap with a soldering iron, they don't like that very much.
Anyways, these little guys seem to be perfect for what we want. the only potential downsides I can see is that they need a connector in order to solder to them and that they aren't as aesthetically customizable as 3DS sliders.


Hope this helps!
 
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Shank

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Portablizing just keeps getting better and better every day. Great work ginger. I'm sure I'll integrate this into a portable in the near future, and I know many others will as well.
 
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Have you looked at it for an n64 joystick? That would be my curiosity right now. I know GC joystick were used a while back.
 
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Stitches

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You'd need a microcontroller for it to work with a stock N64 controller, or one of Downing's boards.
 
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Saw your portable Wii vid, I've been wanting to make my own since i am fairly skilled. Anyways, i was wondering what breakout board did you use for the Switch joysticks? Because i have been looking everywhere and can't seem to find them.
 

Stitches

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GingerOfOz

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Saw your portable Wii vid, I've been wanting to make my own since i am fairly skilled. Anyways, i was wondering what breakout board did you use for the Switch joysticks? Because i have been looking everywhere and can't seem to find them.
Just saw your comment, I also sell premade breakout boards if you'd prefer. DM me through here if you'd be interested.
 
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