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Fix your D-Pad (directional pad) once and for all --- with pics!


#1 walletandgromice   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   788 Posts   Joined 11.3 Years Ago  

walletandgromice

Posted 19 November 2007 - 08:05 PM

Okay, first things first: I find the d-pad on the 360 wireless controller to be a mushy mess. Not everone does and if you don't this thread is not for you.

I've spent the better part of 4 hours trying to figure out how to fix this (also taking apart an xbox S-controller to look at the differences) and the fix isn't sanding alone. I'm pleased to say I've managed to make the d-pad tight as hell and it's improved my Tetris game considerably. :-P
My wife also says the pad is noticably better, and will be her new preferred d-pad for the 360 (that horrific MadCatz arcade stick was her old favorite -- it has a pretty good dpad, fwiw)

First things first, why it's not so hot. MS made two small changes from the old Xbox S-controller. 1: The distance between the button membrane (plyable plastic bit that hits the contacts on the circuit board) and the bottom of the d-pad's contact points seems to have shrunk very slightly (2mm?) so the pad can slide back and forth without pressing any buttons. Bad! 2: To fix this MS made the space around the D-button on the top of the shell smaller (if you look at an S-type and the wireless you'll see that the wall around the D-pad is thicker).

These two problems come together in the following way: Sometimes, when you press a direction you can't get the membrane to connect because there isn't enough room in the well. This is where sanding comes in. You sand all the way around the outer part of the well so the d-pad can be moved enough to make contact but you're not done yet. Now the d-pad will slide around even more which is bad.

Apparently, it's OK to sand the black controller as it's all black (thanks Malik112099)
http://www.cheapassg...29&postcount=27
But I don't know about sanding a Halo 3 pad just yet...

All we're going to do is add a very thin layer between the membrane and the bottom of the plastic of the d-pad to fill that space.

Also, you don't need a special security screw-driver other than a Torx-9. You can snap the security dot out of the center of the screw heads with a small screwdriver (I did so, mostly by accident).

1: Open the controller (there are lots of pictures on-line) The hardest thing for me was realizing there's a screw under the sticker under the battery pack.

The hidden screw. Twisting this screw driver will probably break the security dot:
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This is the membrane of the dpad. Remove it, and everything else
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You have to unscrew those small screws and gently push out the clip to get the d-pad off:
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The d-pad out of the shell
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2: Do the sanding trick. You'll find plenty of tutorials on that, but to be clear you're sanding out the outter ring.

Now you can do your sanding. I used the rough edge of a leatherman. Try not to cut off your hand. Go back in with some fine sandpaper to even it out when done:
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The top pad has been sanded notice how much thinner the outer well-wall is.
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3: Cut a small piece of pliable plastic the same diameter of the bottom of the d-ring (not counting the two tabs) and punch a hole in the center
so the pivot point that extends out can clear it. For pliable plastic, I used the clear top to a can of nuts.

So...get a top from a can of nuts and trace the circle that's the size of the bottom of the d-pad. Cut it out and punch a hole in the center.
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You're going to put the d-pad plastic back in and put your little plastic thing on top of it:
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4: Reassemble and enjoy.

Put the membrane back on (on top of the space) and reassemble the controller:
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Enjoy!

UPDATE: I decided to make an 'instructable' -- which is an awesome site for this sort of thing, btw. Anyway, the link is here:

http://www.instructa...ontrol-pad-mor/


update 2: You need to sand...

Now what does the sanding do?

I just took mine apart and added the thin plastic (took me about 20-30 minutes), and from what I can tell the thing works way better. Up is up and left is left. And the thing clicks with every press.


...

Well, I played some SFII and it works pretty good. Better than it did, but still not great. So I guess sanding would help out a bit. I can see what it does now. The d-pad does hit the contollers housing. So I guess I'm gonna sand it and see how that goes.




#2 mikkymuffins   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   172 Posts   Joined 12.2 Years Ago  

mikkymuffins

Posted 19 November 2007 - 08:07 PM

Anxiously awaiting pics... can't wait to try this out for VF5
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#3 FoxHoundADAM   Super Zissou Bros. CAGiversary!   1789 Posts   Joined 11.7 Years Ago  

FoxHoundADAM

Posted 19 November 2007 - 08:14 PM

The D-Pad on the 360 controler is terrible. It almost ruins the controler to be honest. Good thing most games don't use the D-par except for maybe weapon changing.

I might need to try this.

#4 h3llbring3r   Mecha Cocksmas 2 all CAGiversary!   8993 Posts   Joined 11.2 Years Ago  

h3llbring3r

Posted 19 November 2007 - 08:17 PM

You need to post a step by step with pics. I am in for modding at least one of mine for arcade games.
Edit: Done and Done! Thanks!

My Trade list:

http://www.cheapassg...ad.php?t=173460
Going dark on the internet for two weeks during move.


#5 SpazX   13 Billion Years in the Making CAGiversary!   8345 Posts   Joined 12.6 Years Ago  

Posted 19 November 2007 - 08:45 PM

I'd love a better d-pad, but chances are I'll never take the time to actually mod it.

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#6 Mr. Anderson   spends too much time here CAGiversary!   8983 Posts   Joined 14.4 Years Ago  

Mr. Anderson

Posted 19 November 2007 - 08:49 PM

Pics plzzz.

samuraifez.png


#7 hankmecrankme   Drunken Jesus CAGiversary!   17431 Posts   Joined 14.6 Years Ago  

hankmecrankme

Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:03 PM

I did the sanding trick 2 weeks ago. I started sanding, and then I realized that it would take forever, so I used a razor blade. After working with it for a few minutes, I noticed that I was cutting through the support ring that is below the dpad. I just broke it off, sanded down the inside, and reassembled. It works great now. I can do all of Akira's moves in VF5 now without trouble.

Also, I used a 320 grit sandpaper and sanded down the controller shell, for fun. Mine was worn and shiny, not anymore.

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I like how this one black guy manager at my nearest KFC rejected the chicken and told the employees to make me some new chicken. He understood how us black folks like our friend chicken fresh and not hard.


I love me some fried food. I eat friend food all the time and I'm still super skinny. I can eat all the friend chicken and other unhealthy foods never getting fat.:D


#8 LinkinPrime   :,( CAGiversary!   43888 Posts   Joined 14.3 Years Ago  

LinkinPrime

Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:25 PM

My Halo 3 Edition controller's D-Pad is way worse than my other controllers, when I'm playing CoD4 pressing right on the D-Pad is like pressing Up, half the time it puts my night vision googles on. Waiting on pics to see if I have to guts to try it.

P R O V E H I T O   I N   A L T U M

 

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#9 walletandgromice   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   788 Posts   Joined 11.3 Years Ago  

walletandgromice

Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:32 PM

I just finished my other controller and took lots of pictures.

Can anyone recommend an image hosting service?


#10 Mr. Anderson   spends too much time here CAGiversary!   8983 Posts   Joined 14.4 Years Ago  

Mr. Anderson

Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:34 PM

imageshack.us

samuraifez.png


#11 Pijaibros   doesn't get it CAGiversary!   788 Posts   Joined 14.3 Years Ago  

Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:39 PM

Anxiously awaiting pics... can't wait to try this out for VF5


just get a stick.

please.

vf5 on a stock pad is just.....eww

#12 Pure Apathy   I got paid! CAGiversary!   6432 Posts   Joined 13.9 Years Ago  

Pure Apathy

Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:56 PM

Sweet, I'm waiting for pics as well.

Formerly known as RawisJericho

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#13 walletandgromice   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   788 Posts   Joined 11.3 Years Ago  

walletandgromice

Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:01 PM

Thanks for the rec. Updated OP

imageshack.us




#14 LinkinPrime   :,( CAGiversary!   43888 Posts   Joined 14.3 Years Ago  

LinkinPrime

Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:03 PM

I'm confused on what part you sand, can you please explain in detail.

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#15 halfbent   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   985 Posts   Joined 12.3 Years Ago  

Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:07 PM

If you're looking at the top of the controller (how you'd see it normally while playing) it's the whole edge of the d-pad "bucket." If you take your controller apart, you'll see what to do. I had no idea what to sand either after reading the last little tutorial on it, but after pulling the controller apart it was very obvious.

#16 tiredfornow   Banned Banned   35417 Posts   Joined 12.0 Years Ago  

tiredfornow

Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:08 PM

You sand the white part around the D-pad, Linkin. The ''bucket'' as the guy above said.

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#17 walletandgromice   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   788 Posts   Joined 11.3 Years Ago  

walletandgromice

Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:08 PM

I'm confused on what part you sand, can you please explain in detail.


You're sanding the outter ring. Shown here:

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#18 LinkinPrime   :,( CAGiversary!   43888 Posts   Joined 14.3 Years Ago  

LinkinPrime

Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:10 PM

Thanks for the clarification.

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#19 halfbent   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   985 Posts   Joined 12.3 Years Ago  

Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:16 PM

Flash is the devil for closeup shots too wallace - great pics nontheless tho. I never even thought about the plastic spacing from a can of nuts tho. Will have to give that one a try! Even without the plastic tho, the difference is noticeable. I didn't use any tools when I did mine tho, just a couple pieces of sandpaper folded over. Coarse grit (low #) to get the plastic out, and a fine grit (high #) to get it smooth again. Had to kind of force the screwdriver into the screws in the grip tho, as my bit was too wide for the holes. No big issue other than cosmetics.

#20 walletandgromice   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   788 Posts   Joined 11.3 Years Ago  

walletandgromice

Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:21 PM

Crap. I had a picture w/o flash but then uploaded that one. Oh well.

Yeah, sandpaper just takes more time. Going in fine-grained when I was done after hacking away with the leatherman was certainly needed (it looked like Dr Frakenstien's Controller complete with scars).

After sanding alone, the d-pad is way better about missing presses BUT without some padding in there, you're likely to have the dpad slide around like a floppy fish. With padding it feels clicky (if that makes sense)

Flash is the devil for closeup shots too wallace - great pics nontheless tho. I never even thought about the plastic spacing from a can of nuts tho. Will have to give that one a try! Even without the plastic tho, the difference is noticeable. I didn't use any tools when I did mine tho, just a couple pieces of sandpaper folded over. Coarse grit (low #) to get the plastic out, and a fine grit (high #) to get it smooth again. Had to kind of force the screwdriver into the screws in the grip tho, as my bit was too wide for the holes. No big issue other than cosmetics.




#21 ratzombie   aka yunkie CAGiversary!   12862 Posts   Joined 12.7 Years Ago  

Posted 20 November 2007 - 08:28 AM

Very nice, thanks.

I'll do this when I'm not lazy.

#22 whataboutbob?   Thats what she said CAGiversary!   305 Posts   Joined 12.8 Years Ago  

whataboutbob?

Posted 20 November 2007 - 02:36 PM

Very nice, thanks.

I'll do this when I'm not lazy.


same here. Definitely looks like a Christmas break task. Thanks for all the info and pics cause these shitty d-pads are hell to play arcade games.

#23 kevlar51   eats babies CAGiversary!   1150 Posts   Joined 10.8 Years Ago  

Posted 20 November 2007 - 02:42 PM

My Halo 3 Edition controller's D-Pad is way worse than my other controllers, when I'm playing CoD4 pressing right on the D-Pad is like pressing Up, half the time it puts my night vision googles on. Waiting on pics to see if I have to guts to try it.


Same exact thing happens to me on both my white and black wireless controllers. I'm glad it's not just me; my thumbs aren't that fat! :lol:

#24 ratzombie   aka yunkie CAGiversary!   12862 Posts   Joined 12.7 Years Ago  

Posted 20 November 2007 - 02:42 PM

Perhaps Lumines will finally be playable.

#25 walletandgromice   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   788 Posts   Joined 11.3 Years Ago  

walletandgromice

Posted 20 November 2007 - 02:55 PM

Very nice, thanks.

I'll do this when I'm not lazy.


Ha! I'm always lazy...

I posted an instructable. Link is here:

http://www.instructa...ontrol-pad-mor/


#26 SpazX   13 Billion Years in the Making CAGiversary!   8345 Posts   Joined 12.6 Years Ago  

Posted 20 November 2007 - 02:57 PM

Has anybody ever modded a black controller? I just want to make sure it's solid black plastic and it isn't white underneath or something (so sanding it will end up with a white ring around the d-pad).

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#27 Malik112099   Got Wife? CAGiversary!   8221 Posts   Joined 12.3 Years Ago  

Malik112099

Posted 20 November 2007 - 03:29 PM

Has anybody ever modded a black controller? I just want to make sure it's solid black plastic and it isn't white underneath or something (so sanding it will end up with a white ring around the d-pad).


it is sold black plastic
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#28 walletandgromice   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   788 Posts   Joined 11.3 Years Ago  

walletandgromice

Posted 20 November 2007 - 03:29 PM

Has anybody ever modded a black controller? I just want to make sure it's solid black plastic and it isn't white underneath or something (so sanding it will end up with a white ring around the d-pad).


Wow. Good question. I'd imagine it might be all black, but the Halo 3 controller probably isn't green through to the core I'll amend the OP until we have an answer.


#29 goomba478   Canada's Amerifriend ^_^ CAGiversary!   6281 Posts   Joined 11.1 Years Ago  

Posted 20 November 2007 - 03:47 PM

Would anyone be willing to do this as a paid service? I have a lot of things to do, but I'm absolutely awful with DIY projects and I'd probably just end up destroying the controller in the process. I'd love to test it out though so if any of you are willing to do this for a little bit of extra cash let me know =)

#30 ZForce915   Group hug! CAGiversary!   6423 Posts   Joined 14.7 Years Ago  

Posted 20 November 2007 - 03:59 PM

I posted a while back on this same topic. For those afraid to take apart their controller, you can take an exacto knife and whittle away half of the thickness while still assembled. It may not look as good, but it is fast and doesn't require you to take the whole thing apart.

Bottom line is, you NEED to do something to your controller if you want a functional D-Pad.
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