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How To Fix Your Arcade Stick

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Have you ever been playing an arcade game and had a problem with the arcade stick not working properly? Maybe you are having that issue right now which is why you are looking for the answer to this question! 

So how do you fix your arcade stick? 

Although most people think replacing a broken arcade stick is extremely hard because of all the wiring on the inside of the arcade machine, they are wrong. Fixing your arcade stick is as simple as following the steps outlined below in this article. 

If you want to know how to easily fix your arcade machine stick, you will want to keep reading this article. You can also watch this video to learn how to replace the arcade stick very easily. 

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How to fix your arcade stick

To fix your arcade stick, you’ll have to follow the steps outlined below. 

Bring all the tools that you need

The following are the tools you’re going to need at the time of repairing.

  • One phillips screwdriver or the one that really fits well in the external screws
  • One large flat-head screwdriver
  • A knife or razor blade,or something that is really sharp
  • Superglue or epoxy

1. Remove the back panel

The first step that you need to do is to unscrew all the six screws. There will be two in the center and four screws on the four corners. The rear plate should come out without any problem at all. 

2. Extraction

After opening up the panel, you can easily see the stick and buttons of your arcade machine. The stick is held in with four screws. The screws are normally on the corners of the stick. If you cannot remove the screws, you may need to cut down the seal “Which is in the red dots” and then remove the screws.

After removing the screws, you’ll have to disconnect the ball top from the joystick. For that, you’ll need the flat-head screwdriver. The top ball will come out with the help of the flat-head screwdriver without too much difficulty.

3. Unplug the stick

Next you will have to unplug the stick from the cable which is attached to it. Although this may sound easy, most of the arcade machines and control makers use superglue with the wires. You can use a utility knife to cut down the glue stick with the wire. This might take quite a bit of time as you will want to make sure you do not cut any wires, or pull on any wires that could possibly cause problems with other parts of the machine. 

4. Remove the stick and buy a replacement

Although most people would try and clean the existing stick, most of the time this does not work, and the stick will need replaced. Once you remove the stick, you will be able to look on the part to see if there is a part number for your piece. If there is a part number, you will want to enter it here to buy an exact replacement for your machine. You will want to make sure you buy the piece that fits your machine otherwise you may have a problem with the stick working and fitting properly when you go to reinstall it.  

5. Reassembly

Now it’s time to put all the things back to the place and check whether everything is working the same or not.

The first thing to do to reassemble your machine is to place all the screws and everything according to how you took them out. If you try and use the back panel screws to install the stick, you will have problems with everything working properly. This is why you will want to make sure to do this step carefully. 

Some people reglue the wire back to the other wires, while some just use zip ties. No matter what option you choose, you will just want to make sure the wires are not just hanging in the middle of the machine as they could snag and get pulled if they are not secured properly. 

6. Let’s check everything now.

  • Turn your arcade machine on and play the game on it
  • Play a game in which the arcade stick is more involved than the normal game
  • Now check your arcade stick and if it’s working properly then you can successfully replace your arcade machine stick.
  • If the stick isn’t working properly and you are sure you did everything correctly, you may need to contact an arcade machine technician. Although most people try and avoid them, some are very reasonable and charge very fair prices.

Should I do it myself or hire it out?

If you are wondering about hiring a technician, that depends upon your situation. Some people prefer to hire someone to come and fix their machines anytime something goes wrong. 

Other people prefer to do the work themself and save the money. Depending on what area you live in will depend how much a technician costs to come out and look at your machine. Some places charge $50 to come out, and then use that $50 towards any parts you need, while others can charge upwards of $200 just to look at the machine. 

No matter what option you choose though, you will want to make sure you are comfortable with the option you choose. If you are not comfortable working on your machine, you should not try it as you may break something on the machine that then costs quite a bit more than if you just called a technician in the first place. 

If you’re a technician or work with arcade machines quite a bit, and you know about all the deep things related to wiring and other stuff, then you can probably do it without any problem.  

What arcade stick should I buy?

Although there is a wide variety of arcade sticks to choose from, you will want to buy one that matches your current machine. If there are different values of sticks, you should probably buy either the high end, or the middle of the road option as replacing the stick is not something you want to be doing every couple of months. It is better to spend a few dollars on buying the quality arcade stick just to avoid replacing it often.


Now that you know how to fix the stick on your arcade machine, you can go and replace it. If you were replacing it while reading this, your machine should be up and running once again! No matter what machine you have, you should always be sure to unplug the machine first before you work on it. The last thing anyone wants is to be electrocuted, or cause a short in your machine. 

If you are an entrepreneur and you have successfully fixed your machine, you may want to start fixing other peoples machines as a way to make some extra money. If you do this, most of the time you will gain business by telling your friends and having them tell their friends. Word of mouth is the best way to let people know about your service that you are providing.