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Author Topic: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1  (Read 13105 times)

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Breaker

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A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« on: June 19, 2010, 12:07:02 am »
A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars yoke

Like many on BYOAC and other boards I was very excited to hear about the possibility of a true replica of the legendary Star Wars Yoke. So, in February of 2007, after exchanging several email messages with Dave from Ram Controls, I plunked down my pre-order and waited anxiously for news. Time passed and there was no word, but I persisted, 'things take time' I told myself. Every now and then I would send off a message to Dave inquiring about the status of the SWY project and each time I received a timely response with a brief update. More time passed and then, in December of 2009, the community received word that the yokes were finally completed and ready to ship. However, at the last minute, minor quality control issues prevented the yokes from shipping when promised. A few more weeks passed, and then, in early February we heard that Havok had received a shipping number! We then anxiously followed the progress of the package as it was routed, seemingly by random, from one locale to another, finally landed on Havok's doorstep a few days later. We had pictures! The yoke did exist, and by all accounts, exceeded all expectations. Optimism grew as relieved board members expected the remaining pre-orders to be send out ASAP. However, another short delay ensued as Havok performed a number of quality control checks on the first yoke out of the factory. As yours' truly was a member of the pre-order club I too was anxious for the word that all orders were shipping. Finally, one fateful day in early March, there it was, an email from Dave with a tracking number! I quickly punched the number into the UPS web site and found that my package was on a similar whirl-wind tour around North America before it found its way to my door in icy Edmonton Canada exactly one day later. I was almost giddy as I searched for a knife to careful break the seal on the box that held the holy grail of arcade controls. Moments later I was gingerly hoisting the units from its carefully packaged cradle and placing it on my kitchen counter for  a closer examination. I managed to snap a dozen or so pictures of this moment and posted them on BYOAC before I headed back to work that day. Later on I took closer stock of the yoke and found it to be everything Dave had promised. I spent a great deal of time scanning all angles of the yoke and testing its movement and 'feel'. The quality of the yoke was apparent and  I could not wait to give the unit a real test run on my cab. Unfortunately, as happens with all of us here at BYAOC, real life prevented me from immediately breaking out my tools and getting started on a mount for my cab (not the least of which was that I had moved to a condo since completing my cab in 2007). However, the short delay allowed time for me to order the USB interface for the yoke as, all the while, the yoke sat proudly on my dinner table like a centre piece!

Flash forward to May of 2010 and one faithful Saturday afternoon I made a trip to Home Depot to pick up some MDF (yep I'm a fan of that nasty stuff) and pulled out my tools to begin work on the mount for my new prized controller. A few weeks later I had the yoke mounted to my cab and was able to give it an official test run. What follows is a review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke based upon my experiences.

1. Construction

The yoke was designed by Ram Controls to be a true reproduction of the original Atari model but with a number of significant improvements. The most notable of these upgrades is the use of machined aluminum handles in place of the OEM cast aluminum versions. Dave chose to use machined aluminum over cast aluminum because of the inherent durability of machined aluminum and the extremely precise tolerances it allows (to the 0.001"). He also chose to use the OEM prototype handle design rather than the OEM production version. This decision was based upon his testing of the overall comfort level between the two designs; as Dave put it on BYOAC, the OEM prototypes handles just 'feel SO much better'. So, what about the rest of the yoke? As my unit was a 'pre-order', it was shipped with the optional Atari flight controller decal (pre-orders had this added as small 'thank you' from Dave). Upon closer examination, the unit exudes quality. The heavy guage steel (1/8" in thickness) used in the construction of the handle and steering frames creates a super-strong base for the yoke's many mechanical and electrical components. Tolerances between parts is tight and consistent, and demonstrates the lengths to which Ram Controls went to produce a faithful reproduction while enhancing the unit with quality parts designed to exceed original specifications. Gone are the delicate plastic gears of the original, replaced instead with gears made of modern, high durability Delrin. High quality potentiometers are installed for accurate capture of the X and Y axis movement while modern switches complement the anodized aluminum thumb triggers. Wear surfaces such as the handle and steering shafts, flange bearing and spring anchors were remanufactured from hardened steel and zinc to meet or exceed original Atari specifications.

2. In the box
The yoke shipped with a set of washers and nuts for the mounting plate, a Molex wiring harness (for connecting the yoke to a MAME machine's game port) as well as a very nice 17 page manual. The manual includes instructions for regular cleaning and lubricating, disassembling and reassembling the yoke, adjusting the potentiometers, connecting the yoke to a MAME cab as well as an exploded view of the yoke's components, and a detailed wiring and parts list. Nice touch Dave!
(Hint: a tube of Nyogel 779ZC lubricant would also be nice to see)

See attached pics

Breaker

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 2
« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2010, 12:12:59 am »
3. Fit and Finish
As with the quality of its parts, it is obvious that an equal amount of care and attention was paid to the aesthetics of the yoke. All of the metal surfaces were constructed from cold rolled, laser cut, precision formed steel and powder coated in gloss black. At one point in the construction process Dave reported having quality control issues with the contractor doing the powder coating. These issue were serious enough that it eventually lead Dave to purchase the equipment to perform this operation himself. Upon closer examination of the exterior surfaces of the yoke I can say that the overall finish is of very high quality, however, the powder coating is not perfect. On my unit I noticed a minor anomaly on one of the handle assembly frames. Taking a closer look, it appeared as though the area may have required additional machining (ie. sanding/grinding) to smooth out a minor bump, or possibly this was foreign substance contamination prior to powder coating. However, further examination proved that the powder coating was properly adhered and the minor 'bump' was virtually invisible, so I consider this a minor quibble. One other comment regarding the finish is that the outer front edges of the handle assembly frame were a little rough; again a very minor point. Overall the finish is excellent and can be expected to last a life-time with proper care. One additional point worth noting is that the entire yoke is fastened with original-style security hex-type screws. While these provide a vintage look, I suspect most users will need to purchase a set of security bits to perform any maintenance . It would therefore have been nice to see the required bits and/or Allen wrenches included with the yoke.

4. Wiring
I do not own an original Atari yoke so I can only comment anecdotally on the authenticity of the wiring. However, being a total stickler for clean and efficient wiring, I can say that Ram Controls' yoke clearly demonstrates these qualities. The wires which attach the many switches and potentiometers within the yoke are individually bound and route cleanly through the steering shaft, out the rear gear assembly and terminate in a Molex-style plug. The yoke ships with a second Molex plug for those who wish to connect the yoke to their cab via a game port rather than the available USB adapter. One small issue I noted were the wires extensions on the solder points of the X-axis (horizontal) potentiometer - these were very close to the steering assembly bracket. This is not a huge issue as there are no moving parts in this vicinity, and the bracket itself is powder coated and therefore non-conductive, but it does create the potential for a short. A few snips with a pair of wire cutters would quickly resolve the problem easily and permanently.   

Breaker

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 3
« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2010, 12:16:01 am »
5. The USB interface
As I knew I would have some time before I constructed the mount for my yoke, and because I didn't want to cut into the pristine wiring job, I opted to order the USB interface for my yoke. This unit, which came out shortly after the yoke's release, allows a complete plug-&-play solution for connecting the Ram Controls yoke to your cab. I won't comment much on the interface itself except to say that it a arrived quickly, was well packed, and is quite compact in size. It also included a 6' USB cable and a wiring harness to attach the interface to the yoke. When released, there were a number of comments on BYOAC concerning the durability and longevity of the PCB-mounted Molex plug as some felt it could be damaged with consistent use. However, in reality, the plug itself is very sturdily attached and would stand up to any amount of normal usage. In addition, it is highly unlikely that a user would choose  to connect/disconnect the yoke via the Molex connection instead of the USB cable. More on the USB interface when I report on game play.

6. The mount
I spent a great deal of time planning and constructing the mount for my yoke so I thought I'd spend a few lines (and a couple of pictures) blowing my own horn. Since building a complete control panel for the yoke was out of the question given my high-rise location I decided instead to design a bolt-on mount. Once I determined that the proper angle for the yoke was 45 degrees I completed my plans and got to work. I built the mount from 5/8" MDF (yep I like the dusty stuff) and used break-down hardware (which I had also used on my cab) to allow the unit to be disassembled easily if necessary. For consistency purposes I finished the mount in the same black laminate as my cab and applied some t-molding to the front edges for durability. I did discover that working with break-down hardware on a small angled surface was more of a challenge than expected, but I am very happy with the end result. One aspect of the construction worth noting was that cutting the opening for the yoke was an exercise in patience which required many cuts with my router to get right. As a result, I would have preferred a cutting template be included with the yoke to take the guess work out of this operation. In the end, I took careful measurements of my cut-out and put together my own cutting template for those needing to make a similar cut to mount their yoke (see attached). Finally, I permanently mounted the USB interface on my mount, allowing easy connecting via the USB cable.

Breaker

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 4
« Reply #3 on: June 19, 2010, 12:18:54 am »
7. Installation/Configuration
After all that, I could barely wait to connect the yoke to my cab, and give the unit a real life test-run! For the purpose of clarity, here are the specifications of my MAME cab:

Windows XP Professional (SP1)
Pentium 4 2.8 GHz
512 MB RAM
MAME 079, MAMEWAH 1.62 b12
IPac, OptiPac, 2 X U360, Happ 3" trackball, Vortex spinner, flight control stick, AVGA, Wells Gardner D9200

I must admit to being rather sceptical of all plug-&-play claims, a condition which stems from living through the early days of this wonderful protocol! So, with great hope I booted up my cab, plugged the USB cable from the interface into my cab, and crossed my fingers. Voila! The computer recognized and configured the interace without a hitch! I then decided to employ the advice of those on BYOAC regarding calibration of the yoke and went into 'Control Panel -> Game Controllers' and sure enough there it was 'USB Yoke 1.0'. Clicking on the 'Properties' button, I was presented with two tabs 'Settings' and 'Test', and a 'Calibrate' button. Clicking on the 'Calibrate' button brought me to a series of screens in which the user is asked to move the yoke through its range of motion in order to calibrate the unit. This process was quick and easy and I completed it without issue.

For reference the yoke's default button settings are as follows:

left trigger - button 1
right trigger - button 4
left top-fire - button 3
right top-fire - button 2


8. Game Play
As a teenager in the 80's I was lucky enough to experience the genesis of the arcade in the late 70's to the unfortunate downturn of the mid-to-late 80's. My friends and I hung out for hours pumping quarters into machines and competing with gladiator-lie tenacity for ultimate 8-bit supremacy. Sadly, despite all those hours, my  recall of experiences on the original Star Wars game have eluded me. So it was with giddy anticipation that I proceeded to fire-up Mamewah, scroll down to 'Star Wars', and hit the start button!!! I felt 14 again as I grabbed the yoke and selected a level of difficulty for my first shot at the game in over 20 years. As I heard Obi-Wan eclare 'the force will be with you' I hung on and began twisting, turning and firing at the X-wing fighters on the screen. It was only then that I cam to realized the true virtues of the Ram Controls Star Wars yoke. The solid construction and high quality components used in the yoke's construction were immediately apparent as game play was smooth and consistent. Movement in both the X and Y axes was crisp, smooth and very responsive. The unit felt beefy and strong and Dave's upgrades to the handles, triggers and switches produced no fatigue even after many intense games. The combined operation of the interface and the yoke were, in a word, flawless.

After some time I decided to investigate MAME's game sensitivity options (accessed via the 'TAB' key) to see if tweaking these values had any effect on the yoke's feel in game play. The analog control tab in MAME allows a user to adjust the  speed and sensitivity of to their personal preference; a nice customization feature. As each person's preference is different I won't invest a great deal of time explaining the rationale for the settings I ultimately chose. However, MAME's analog setting menu is definitely a feature worth noting, and, for the record, my settings were as follows:

AD Stick Y Key/Joy Speed (50)
AD Stick Y Reverse (Off)
AD Stick Y Sensitivity (80%)
AD Stick X Key/Joy Speed (50)
AD Stick X Reverse (Off)
AD Stick X Sensitivity (80%)
  
Your mileage may vary…

One issue I noted upon starting the game was that the cross-hairs did not align perfectly with the centre of the screen; they were close but not perfect. This is not a Windows calibration issue or a problem with the yoke or its interface. Rather, it is a know 'feature' of the game. As noted in several posted on BYOAC, each time the game is started, it is necessary to calibrate the cross-hairs by moving the controls through a full range of movement around the edge of screen. Once I performed this simple operation, the cross-hairs were centre perfectly for the duration of the time I ran the game; MAME users take note!

The USB interface allows the yoke to be used with several games other than Star Wars; including Empire Strikes Back, Firefox, and Return of the Jedi. I can report that testing in Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi proved as positive as my experience with Star Wars. Unfortunately, I don't have Firefox setup in Daphne so I was unable to test the yoke with this game. However, informal reports by BYOAC members indicate that the yoke does indeed work well with Firefox.

With many hours of game play under my belt, I decided to see how the yoke worked with other driving games. To this end, I spent a number of hours testing the yoke on games such as Pole Position, Spy Hunter, Out Run and Stun Runner. Unfortunately, despite significant adjustments to the analog control settings in each, I found that the yoke did not provide satisfactory control in these games. Curious, I emailed Dave at Ram Controls to ask about the compatibility of the USB interface for use in other games besides Star Wars. In his response, Dave confirmed that the USB interface was indeed tuned specifically for use with Star Wars. However, Dave did advise that swapping the yoke's standard 5k potentiometer with 100k units and wiring these directly to the game port on my system (circumventing the USB interface) would likely allow the yoke to operate well in other games. However, as of the writing of this review, I have not attempted this approach. Perhaps others have had more luck in configuring the yoke for other games when connected via the USB interface? If so, I welcome their comments and suggestions on BYOAC.In summary, the yoke and the USB interface performed flawlessly and there is every indication that the yoke can be easily modified to extend its use beyond its four natively supported games. 

Breaker

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 5
« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2010, 12:22:06 am »
9. Support
The arcade community, as consumers, places a high value on the availability and quality of the support behind the products we buy; in some cases the support IS the reason we purchase from a particular vendor. It is therefore worthwhile to spend a few moments to discuss the support available from Ram Controls. As with most of the vendors providing products to this niche market Ram Controls is not a full time endeavour for its owner. In that respect, and like most of  the vendors present on BYOAC, support is provided in the form of postings on the board, PMs and email. I have been a member of BYOAC for many years and, in that time, I have seen a lot of criticism towards vendors when they fail to respond to messages in a time-frame deemed appropriate by a member (be it an hour, a day, a week or a month). The end result, is that the support experience becomes quite subjective in nature, as each person applies their own specific criteria of satisfaction. This is not meant to be an indictment of the arcade community's expectations, quite the contrary. I firmly believe that we are a patient and supportive group. I believe we also understand the significant challenges our vendors face, and are more than willing to provide them with the latitude they require, in return for the valuable  products they supply to our niche population. However, the long development cycle of the Star Wars yoke (3 years) came under strong criticism at times on BYOAC and other boards, as did Dave's early pre-order strategy. Given this, it is important to note that, despite gaps in communication, Dave was always up-front about the reasons surrounding the delays in the yoke's development. He also indicated that he would make the yoke available for sale only after he was satisfied that it met his own high standards of quality. Dave also indicated, on many occasions, that anyone who wished a full refund of a pre-order would receive one; and they did. He was perhaps overly optimistic at times and, in retrospect, he recognized this. Dave also acknowledged that his communications should have been more timely throughout the yoke's development cycle and on this I would agree. However, the product was ultimately delivered; 'nuff said.

In my experience, Dave has always provided a satisfactory level of support. On many occasions I have emailed him with questions related to the yoke and, even during his absences from board, he responded in a timely and professional manner. Dave is very knowledgeable about his products and stands behind them 100%. I also feel that Ram Controls is a vendor who makes an effort to solicit input from the arcade community and actively translates that feedback into the products they develop. An example of this partnership between vendor and customer  are the three levels of yoke rebuild kits which are available (standard, deluxe, premium). Additionally, Ram Controls makes each component of the yoke available separately, allowing the customer to economically replace only one piece if necessary. In fact, I believe it was in direct response to requests from owners of original Atari yokes that lead Ram Controls to made these kits (and parts) available, before the reproduction was ready for resale.  Again, nice touch Dave!
 
10. Final Impressions
For those of us who were lucky enough to experience the arcades at the height of their popularity we have lasting memories attached to the people, places and games that brought us to those dark halls day after day to escape and play. These memories are the driving force behind our desire to clean off our workbenches, sweep out our garages and pick up our tools to build and restore the games we cherished most. Given that parts for these games have not been manufactured for decades, we are exceedingly fortunate to have vendors who are as enthusiastic about their support for this niche hobby as we are. The Ram Controls Star Wars yoke is the ultimate example of that enthusiasm. Ram Controls has produced a truly remarkable controller which meets, and in many cases exceeds, original Atari specifications. To experience Star Wars using the Ram Controls yoke is an experience you will not forget. To won one is to feel like you possess a true piece of arcade history. The price for the Ram Controls reproduction yoke is $245. While not cheap, it is significantly below the prices being asked for original Atari yokes on Ebay or other web sites, which can range up to $600 for rescued and un-restored versions. The Ram Controls Star Wars yoke is a landmark achievement for the arcade community. In a word, it is a time machine; one that will transport you back to those carefree days when your only concern was how long your supply of quarters would last, and battling to keep your initials on the top score listings each day! Congratulations Dave, I look forward in anticipation to the contributions that Ram Controls will make to our hobby in the months and years to come.
 

THE GAME IS NEVER OVER
Breaker


Postscript:
After emailing Dave to ask about a cutting template he advised that one was available and would be included with future yokes.
I have attached my own version of the template; I hope the scale has remained correct, but I can supply the original Photoshop PSD as needed.

The opinions expressed in this review are those of the author only and do not represent those of Ram Controls, BYOAC administrators or members, or any other person or entity.
« Last Edit: June 21, 2010, 06:12:12 pm by Breaker »

Havok

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2010, 02:01:04 pm »
Nice writeup! One thing to note is that Firefox is in Mame, not Daphne. It requires a ROM and CHD file and works great with the yoke!

Great work on creating the mount for your yoke. I ended up cheating and using a spare Roadblasters control panel. One of these days I'll track down some pictures and post my control panel.

Xiaou2

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2010, 03:00:23 pm »
I dont understand why Outrun and StunRunner would not work the same as Starwars.

 Im pretty well certain that all Arcade games used 5k pots.
 The PC analog joysticks I believe use 100k pots.

 In order for Starwars to work in windows & mame, I would have thought that the
usb interface would have to translate the 5k signal into a 100k equivalent ?


Paul Olson

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #7 on: June 21, 2010, 01:08:21 pm »
Nice write up! thanks for posting the template. I will need to use that pretty soon unless my yoke comes with one.

@Havoc - did the mount you bought end up not working? I was thinking of trying to get a couple of those made. I do have a spare RB panel though...

Havok

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #8 on: June 21, 2010, 03:24:47 pm »
That sale fell through, so I went with the RB panel. They should work just fine however.

kronic24601

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #9 on: June 21, 2010, 03:40:22 pm »
Awesome write-up! Has anyone tried this with PaperBoy?

Also, if anyone figures out how to use this for 270 degree racing games I'll buy this in a heartbeat.

WareWolF

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #10 on: June 21, 2010, 07:04:10 pm »
You might want to wait until the pre orders all ship before buying one.   I'm still not convinced I will ever see mine.

push2reject

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #11 on: June 21, 2010, 11:11:46 pm »
Excellent review.  I might have to get me one of these.  Where did you get the breakdown hardware for the mount?
On the other side of the screen, it all looks so easy.  -Kevin Flynn

Breaker

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #12 on: June 22, 2010, 01:36:28 am »
Hi all,

Havok - thanks for the clarification; I was wondering why I didn't see Firefox listed in my Daphne menu! :)

Xiaou2 - very good point, and one that I share. I thought that any game using 5k pots natively would be good-to-go via the USB interface.
             I should clarify that the yoke will work with other games, I just found the control was not as precise as I would have expected
             in games such as Outrun, Pole Position and Stun Runner. I'd welcome input from anyone who has a yoke and has tried playing these games.

Kronic24602 - I suspect if you swapped in 100k pots for the stock 5k pots in the yoke you'd have a working 270 degree unit
                      (I really should give this a try and report back)

push2refect - the knockdown hardware came from Lee Valley: http://www.leevalley.com/en/hardware/page.aspx?p=40049&cat=3,41306,41319&ap=1
                     LV was  just the most convenient location for me but I suspect Home Depot, Rona, or others will also have them
« Last Edit: June 22, 2010, 01:38:45 am by Breaker »

kronic24601

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #13 on: June 22, 2010, 12:07:43 pm »
@Breaker,

Have you overclocked your Mouse Polling rate? I think in a lot of games the polling rate is much higher than what Windows initially puts out, this may be the problem. If you haven't maybe give that a try before swapping the pots.

Some info on how to change the polling rate can be seen here: http://wiki.arcadecontrols.com/wiki/Info_on_Serial/PS2/USB_Mouse_%27Polling%27

Cananas

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2011, 03:19:57 am »
Quote
set of washers and nuts for the mounting plate, a Molex wiring harness (for connecting the yoke to a MAME machine's game port) as well as a very nice 17 page manual.

Quote
After emailing Dave to ask about a cutting template he advised that one was available and would be included with future yokes.

Recently, My yoke arrived:

- No washers
- No nuts
- No Molex wiring harness (not important, because I ordered the USB interface)
- No Manual
- No cutting template

Too bad.

AC.

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #15 on: July 31, 2012, 10:38:20 pm »
Nice write up!  I'm usually always a year late to the party. I have an original upright SW that I've owned since about 1992.  I recently was able to get it repaired but know it won't last forever.  Am now looking at one of these yokes w/USB to attach to a MAME

SavannahLion

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #16 on: July 31, 2012, 10:50:44 pm »
Must you drag up such a nasty thread? Check the RAM CONTROLS thread in the stickies above. Make some coffee or cocoa. Then read through the disappointment that calls itself RAM CONTROLS.

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #17 on: July 31, 2012, 11:15:33 pm »
Nice write up!  I'm usually always a year late to the party. I have an original upright SW that I've owned since about 1992.  I recently was able to get it repaired but know it won't last forever.  Am now looking at one of these yokes w/USB to attach to a MAME

You can get the USB yoke adapter at TOG and parts for your yoke from VGP.  No need to deal with Scam Controls.


Scott
EDIT: VGP is now doing business as arcadefixit.com.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2015, 02:38:02 am by PL1 »

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #18 on: July 31, 2012, 11:26:14 pm »
Thanks for the info on RAM.  I will hold off on Ram controls to see what happens next.   
Yes I think I will get that USB plug for my current yoke from tog for when my SW finally bombs forever.

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #19 on: August 06, 2012, 12:11:09 pm »
Thanks for the info on RAM.  I will hold off on Ram controls to see what happens next.   
Yes I think I will get that USB plug for my current yoke from tog for when my SW finally bombs forever.




If you have a real Star Wars it will not be the yoke that is the problem when it dies.  100% guaranteed.

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #20 on: November 12, 2012, 01:04:57 pm »
Thanks for the info on RAM.  I will hold off on Ram controls to see what happens next.   
Yes I think I will get that USB plug for my current yoke from tog for when my SW finally bombs forever.




If you have a real Star Wars it will not be the yoke that is the problem when it dies.  100% guaranteed.

I'm curious about that statement. Are you just saying that the game PCBs will go first?

BTW. I have a Ram Controls yoke kit and was just wondering if all the parts in the kit were really necessary. Outside of the gears, is the kit representative of failure points in the original yoke?

Thanks.

Darren Harris
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My collection:Asteroids, Joust, Millipede, Ms. Pac-man, Pole Position, Robotron 2084, Star Trek, Star Wars, and 100+ PCBs. Trading/Selling:Arkanoid: R.O.D. Cocktail, Sanyo 20EZ, Hewlett Packard 16500A Logic Analysis System with Accessories. Wanted:Mach 3 joystick. Millipede Trackball. MVS 4-slot PCB. 100° or WG4600 monitor Tube.

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #21 on: November 12, 2012, 01:12:50 pm »
The monitor would be the most likely point of failure.  And they are like Rocking Horse Poo to get.  As for the parts, I would say no. But if you are going to strip down the yoke you may as well do a proper rebuild on it rather then just swapping those bits that are obviously worn.

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #22 on: November 12, 2012, 04:53:48 pm »
The monitor would be the most likely point of failure.  And they are like Rocking Horse Poo to get.  As for the parts, I would say no. But if you are going to strip down the yoke you may as well do a proper rebuild on it rather then just swapping those bits that are obviously worn.

Well, I'm of the mantra of not fixing what isn't broken, because shotgunning when you don't have to tends to result in throwing away parts that are still good.

Darren Harris
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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #23 on: November 13, 2012, 03:19:02 pm »
I'm curious about that statement. Are you just saying that the game PCBs will go first?


The monitor, or the game PCB set, or the AR board.  Anything.  Hell, even the cabinet itself is more likely to go bad than the Star Wars yoke.  I have pulled good yokes off of swiss cheese Star Wars cabinets where the only thing that still works is the yoke. 

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Re: A review of the Ram Controls Star Wars Yoke - Part 1
« Reply #24 on: November 17, 2012, 06:18:01 pm »
Ok. Question.

I put one of my yoke kits up for sale and someone asked about the spacer bearing. Were all of the kits supposed to come with spacer bearings?

This is not in my kits and I was just wondering if was I shorted all those years ago. (I know there were at least 4 or 5 kits that varied as far as what they consisted of).

Thanks.

Darren Harris
Staten Island, New York.
My collection:Asteroids, Joust, Millipede, Ms. Pac-man, Pole Position, Robotron 2084, Star Trek, Star Wars, and 100+ PCBs. Trading/Selling:Arkanoid: R.O.D. Cocktail, Sanyo 20EZ, Hewlett Packard 16500A Logic Analysis System with Accessories. Wanted:Mach 3 joystick. Millipede Trackball. MVS 4-slot PCB. 100° or WG4600 monitor Tube.