Galaxy Force upright project – Technical considerations

So I had my PCB, I had a cabinet, was it going to be as simple as just plugging it it? Well, yes and no. The general pinout for Galaxy Force is the same aside for the control inputs. Additionally the UK built G-Loc cabinets were mono, despite having a stereo amp, a stereo PCB, and two speakers. Yes, they really did cut corners bolting them together.

For reference, here are the pinouts for G-Loc and Galaxy Force on the controls connector:

G-Loc and Galaxy Force filter to PCB loom pinout.

JST pin    G-Loc AMP    Galaxy Force AMP
-------    ----------   -----------------
1          B1           A7
2          B2           A8
3          B5           B8
4          B3           A9
5          A1           A4
6          A2           A5
7          A3           A6
8          A8           A2
9          B8           B2
10         A9           A3
11         -            -
12         -            -

Additonally, one of the pots in the Galaxy Force stick had lost a wire and shorted at some point, cooking the connector.  Luckily Andy Welburn to the rescue, who still had an Afterburner loom I’d given him, and sent across the required connector.  I took the opportunity to replace the pots with brand new ones from Giz10p, fixed the loom and adjusted the pinout.  It was actually pretty promising straight off the bat..

Unfortunately there were two small problems.  Firstly in G-Loc the throttle control rests at the bottom, it’s sprung one way.  In Galaxy Force, the throttle rests in the middle.  Not a huge issue, since most people play Galaxy Force with it rammed at max throttle all the way except for the tunnels, I simply decided that rest should be full power, and push forward to slow down.  Worked perfectly as it happens, all good.  The other problem though was the ship wouldn’t bank or climb/dive steeply enough.  The problem is, while both games use a 5v pot, G-Loc has a shorter throw stick and uses multiplied on the inputs – hence the different pinout.

I was going to need a whole new stick to fit the cab, or some way of adapting the existing stick to suit it.