View Full Version : Body Pillow Arcade Stick

April 25th, 2014, 03:01 PM
Alright, wasn't too sure where to put this but here it is. After a bit of practice on my own sticks, boards and such, I want to get into my real project:

Modding a body pillow - dakimakura - into a fully functional, arcade fight stick. An example image would be something like... this:

http://www.hobbyheart.com/images/images_big/H2403%20blazblue%20fix%20160.jpg Honestly, the idea came from this image:
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/e/e5/Balrog-StreetFighter.png.jpg If only there was a pillow cover for him. I would so donate it to PR Balrog.

Regardless, you might be wondering how I might make a body pillow into an arcade stick. The answer: I don't know. I'm winging it as I go along. So far though, I recently constructed a CAD model of what it could potentially be. (See end of post). While as some of you may notice I used a Cthulhu PCB in the model, I was recently recommended to use a PS360+, so ignore the indiscernible text in it. Here's a link for the full model: http://tinyurl.com/k9sjyot : I've estimated costs to be on the high end of $160, while it could potentially be as low as $80.

Design notes:

Unlike traditional arcade sticks (image iv), based on the pillow's structure, this arcade stick will be played similar to a cello. The "bottom" of the pillow will rest on the ground, while it would be propped up against the player's left shoulder as he's sitting down. (I will be using a right handed player from now on) Unlike a cello, the right hand will rest higher up, closer to the chest, while the left hand is closer to your knees. In essence, you're holding it in in a rather scandalizing image - like hugging someone from behind. This is supported by the design.

Originally, I had conceptualized using a male body pillow cover (i.e. Balrog/Boxer), where the buttons will have covered the chest, while the joystick was where you'd think it would be.

...I was a little tipsy at that time. Note: the cable to plug into the console is coming out the opposite end. XP

Currently, I am waiting for a little more cash to purchase all the items, and then I will start soon after. I've finished my exams today *Hoo Rah* so I'm free until July. Other than that, I will design notes and ideas on how to actually construct it.

http://i.imgur.com/4ifTPoL.png http://i.imgur.com/6pjH8Ei.png http://i.imgur.com/uClDpkU.png
(iv) http://gearmedia.ign.com/gear/image/article/954/954006/arcade-stick-throwdown-hori-vs-mad-catz-20090212033624507.jpg

All in all, what do you think?

April 25th, 2014, 03:46 PM
but why

April 25th, 2014, 03:55 PM
but why

Because free time and extra comfort

April 26th, 2014, 11:48 AM
but why

Because free time, nothing else to do other than job searching, and because why not? I saw a stick in the shape of a mobile tank, and I was thus inspired to do something crazy.

Der Ritter
April 26th, 2014, 05:56 PM
but why
The real question is "Why the f*ck not?"

April 27th, 2014, 01:05 AM
Is that pic by Segami Daisuke? Looks like his work.

mAc Chaos
April 27th, 2014, 01:55 AM
turn back now

you have so much left to live for

April 27th, 2014, 02:54 AM
keep going

see where it takes you

In-N-Out Double-Double & Animal Fries
April 27th, 2014, 05:00 AM
I approve of this thread and, more importantly, I approve of this body pillow fightstick

but realtalk, you should make the bottom flat so it doesn't rock back and forth when you're trying to play

April 27th, 2014, 10:08 AM
I approve of this thread and, more importantly, I approve of this body pillow fightstick

but realtalk, you should make the bottom flat so it doesn't rock back and forth when you're trying to play

Keep the bottom flat - Hmm... maybe I should extend the bottom (right side of [top] image) all the way to the pillow's edge - or maybe add a plate to the bottom of the pillow, and/or attach a beam from the [top] image's right side.

April 30th, 2014, 10:26 PM

I have ordered the dakimakura - and it turns out, the item I was purchasing was just the cover, not the pillow. Damn. Anyway, I discovered that it was 150 cm x 50 cm (or 60" x 20") and have remade my CAD model. I also added two important things: a second layer to the top panel (for strengthening purposes), as well as a stand on the bottom. Something I forgot in my initial calculations is that, since the pillow will be held upright, there will be a shear stress on the button/stick holes. Gravity is pulling the stick after all. Without the stand, it's possible that the fight stick will elongate the holes and wreck the pillow.

So thanks for bringing that up, MLUCBTL.

Also, I plan to incorporate a zipper (in a semi-oblong shape) around the top panel - and a hinge as well - to enable easier access to the stick's contents. Because the last idea meant I had to go underneath with a velcro strip. Wasn't that good an idea, after bouncing it off my sister (who sews).

All in all, I'ma waiting for the pillow to come in before I finalize the measurements and thus the true construction.


May 14th, 2014, 09:33 PM
Update: May 14, 2014

My PS360+, pillow and cover came in!

However, it turns out that the board I was working on is far too big... so I had to remeasure its dimensions. In doing so, I realize that I need to redo the Start+Select+Home buttons. I'm thinking of moving it in between the 8 buttons and joystick, but I'm not too sure that would be the best position. What do you think?

Also, I should be done within a week. Or two, since I've been in the habit of procrastinating recently.

Pillow and Dakimakura - why does my camera take HD photos?

First Draft of the Top Panel

mAc Chaos
May 15th, 2014, 09:34 AM
why stop at the arcade stick

where is the 360/ps3 pillow

May 19th, 2014, 04:47 PM
Update: May 19th. 2014

Used a jigsaw to cut out the Start+Select+Home buttons, as well as the bottom panel. (1) Rather than slice it into multiple pieces, I used a power drill to create holes at each of the corners, which is why you'll see some of the round parts.

Following that, I adhered the two together with a spray adhesive. (3) The result.... didn't come out too good. I placed a paper towel underneath so that the adhesive wouldn't stick around on the floor, but mixed up the sides. Thus, I had to respray it, which meant that the stupid towel continued to stick. (2)

The top done, it's time to do the sides! I've decided to make a simple box, but haven't yet attached them yet due to my procrastination. Oh well. (4) I'll attach the hinge after the box is completed, and the small ledge (beside the head) will be where the PCB will be. Also, I plan on using the extra space to be the pillow cover's storage space - because, walking with a covered dakimakura in public will certainly be a test of will.

And @mAc Chaos

Maybe next time. With a console, then I gotta worry about weight, heat, space management, among others.

http://i.imgur.com/9XT5hG8.jpg?1?3670 [1]
http://i.imgur.com/q65zO8o.jpg?1 [2]
http://tinyurl.com/mek3nuz [3]
http://i.imgur.com/uPFIRa9.jpg?1?2124 [4]

May 19th, 2014, 04:49 PM
Do arcade sticks run hot?

Every one I've ever used has run pretty cold.

May 19th, 2014, 05:15 PM
No. His idea was for putting a xbox 360/ps3 in a body pillow. Due to the insulation/down/inside stuff, heat could potentially be a problem... plus, that stuff could get into the disc drive and wreck it.

It's a novel idea though. I could get a Ragna body pillow for the stick and use the Noel one for console --- hue hue hue :]

May 25th, 2014, 11:21 PM
Update 5/25/14

Got the box (1) done. Note: using nails to attach perpendicular pieces - harder than I anticipated.

Resorted to holding one piece between my feet, the other piece + nail in one hand, while I hammered it in. And then, I noticed that it was too large!!! I did not want to go through the trouble of re-nailing the damn thing, so I lopped off the extra parts with a jigsaw - still attached. I managed to get it to work. And while you do not see it, I did add a small ledge where the pcb would be attached.

Screwed in the joystick while I was at it too. I'll be done with the wiring when I re-borrow my dad's power drill.


May 27th, 2014, 10:22 AM
I thought it would actually be fluffy.

May 27th, 2014, 02:53 PM
That's cuz it's not ready yet to be placed in the pillow.

Update: 5/27/14

* Cut open the pillow in a rectangular fashion, leaving one "flap" remaining (1)
* Removed enough stuffing so that the stick can fit inside adequately (2)
* Drilled pilot holes, attached the hinges to both the base and the top panel. (3)
* Found it wouldn't rotate more than 10/20* ; filed the edge away so that the angle of rotation is at least 45*
* Found out that I attached the hinges to the wrong side ; was to lazy to fix, plus I realized that the top wouldn't fall out easily (3)
* Drilled pilot holes into PCB ledge - would obtain screws later (nails didn't work) (4)
* Acquired, measured out and sawed the stand parts: beam and flat bottom. While I did drill the pilot holes, I had to go to work so I'll be finishing up later tonight. (5) (6)


May 28th, 2014, 11:17 PM
Update 5/28

Finished. For the most part:

* Input the buttons (1)
* Attached the wires (2)
* Shove it in the pillow
* ???
* Profit (3)

All that's left is to cut out the circles on the cover, fill out the pillow a little more with stuffing, and that's about it:



May 29th, 2014, 01:51 AM
I... I don't have words.

May 29th, 2014, 01:56 AM
Bruh you just wasted a perfectly good Noel pillow smh bruh

Could've at least gotten a trash tier waifu one man

May 29th, 2014, 09:45 PM
Bruh you just wasted a perfectly good Noel pillow smh bruh

Could've at least gotten a trash tier waifu one man

Trash tier waifu > Trash tier waifu > ... > Garbage (waifu) > Tsubaki?

She's like $150 bruh.

Anyway, total costs. From scratch, having none of the tools, buttons, parts, it's about... a little over $200. Like 224 or something. (Not going to lie: I originally made up this number, but after calculating it it turned out to be within error! :) ) Had I had most of them, and chosen to use an old PCB from my Hori VX, then the price would've been a little over $80.

Noel Cover - 32.99
Body Pillow - 54.99
8 Buttons - 22.00
PS360+ & 15' usb - 65
Wood - 15
Hinges - 2.50
Nails/Screws - 10
Crimp Tool - 13.99
Screwdrivers - 7.99

Total time spent: 4 days - without the whole waiting time for the cover & pillow

May 29th, 2014, 09:52 PM
Trash tier waifu > Trash tier waifu > ... > Garbage (waifu) > Tsubaki?

Oh, oh man, thems fighting words breh. You best be prepared for the woopin I'm bout to give yo ass


(Realtalk though, pretty amusing idea, I don't think I've ever met someone who would've thought of that kind of idea >>)

May 31st, 2014, 02:04 AM
Welp it reached twitter. Congrats.

In-N-Out Double-Double & Animal Fries
May 31st, 2014, 02:29 AM

May 31st, 2014, 02:35 AM

May 31st, 2014, 05:19 AM
hahaha holy shit

In a weird anime way that owns.

Strife ❤️
May 31st, 2014, 05:21 AM
Well that's certainly a thing.

May 31st, 2014, 11:36 AM
Wow, this is actually pretty awesome. Good job actually making it.

May 31st, 2014, 07:22 PM
Thanks all.

Brought it out to my weekly - and had to do some on-site repairs though, which made me slightly annoyed.

June 1st, 2014, 12:22 AM
Oh god.

June 1st, 2014, 10:01 AM
So how does it feel, using a futanari dong to kick ass?

"I know what buttons to push in a girl"

June 1st, 2014, 11:46 AM
Incredibly awkward.

Repeatedly had problems jumping instead of moving back/forth. Certain commands wouldn't come out - qcf, dp, spd, charge motions - with most of them ending with me jumping. Doing Ultra commands (qcf x2, charge ultras) was near impossible at the beginning. So I had to change my direction layout (the on-site repair), which was marginally better. And even then, the above problems still were there.

mAc Chaos
June 2nd, 2014, 02:58 AM
the stick didnt ruin noel

noel ruined the stick

June 2nd, 2014, 03:16 AM
Siriel might make his own.

June 7th, 2014, 06:20 AM
Truly a work of art.

June 25th, 2014, 03:15 PM
One of the changes that I'm must definitely going to have on ver.2.0 is to remove that freaking hole.

* Longer top panel - to ensure that the stuffing does not cover the top buttons + plus easier to lift
* Slimmer design - seriously, there was no point - now that I think about it - in giving space to put the cover in.... maybe
* 4 beams instead of 2
* 2 beams will support the back
* Need more support for right hand
* HINGE OUTSIDE - should give wider range of rotation
* Need to fix Start+Select+Home arrangement/location
* HitBox rather than Joystick? ..... nah
* Bolts and washers on the side - to better attach the pillow's fabric, so that it ain't a gaping hole, in which the stuffing can fall through
* Need to devise new way to attach the flap to cover
* NO GAPING HOLE ON THE BOTTOM - I have to remove stuffing which gets trapped inside every. freaking. TIME!
* Rather than proper holes, it may possibly be better to make a + slit in the cover for the buttons

Oh, and I made a 3D CAD instead. While... good, FreeCAD crashes everytime in Draft Mode (whenever I drew [Circle], [Rectangle], [Line] or used [Move])



Now that that's finished, let's get to the good stuff. Any recommendations for the cover? While I do want to do something fighting game related, the number of fg covers is.... limited. That, and I'm not confident to choose one particular cover. So shoot me/this thread with your recommendations.

You know what, I'll make a custom one from Tanabe's work. Hue Hue Hue ;d

June 25th, 2014, 03:23 PM
Stick with something Blazblue

June 26th, 2014, 01:49 PM
After an hour of editing, I made this image suitable for body pillows. She actually has a left leg, compared to the picture I used!


June 26th, 2014, 01:51 PM
Question, did the costs end up coming out closer to the low end or the high end?

June 26th, 2014, 02:10 PM
High end. Like I wrote in an earlier post, it was more than 220 - greater than my initial estimate of 160$. However, that was mostly due to my purchasing of special tools, fasteners, wood, pcb, etc.

For this project, since I'm more or less cannibalizing my current stick and using the leftover supplies, all I would need is to make a new cover. Most sites suggest a price of 25 - 60$ for a custom cover. Did I answer your question?

June 26th, 2014, 02:28 PM

June 26th, 2014, 04:04 PM
Completed my editing. Not too shabby for my first time :p (v-13 = front, u-12 = back)

Now! Off to the maker!



.... turns out, my Noel cover was banned from my venue because the staff and non-fgc customers (it was a restaurant) felt uncomfortable with it around. So I gotta go with something definitely Under 18. In honor of the new fighting games coming out, I'm thinking of using these characters (will post more later)


July 4th, 2014, 04:40 PM
Currently making the base. Since I haven't exactly finished the pillow design, I'm not going to make the top panel just yet.

Sketched out the parts.

Cut out parts and sanded the edges.

*Even after last time, I still suck at cutting straight lines :(

July 11th, 2014, 09:39 PM
Update: Been busy with co-op.

Made the box. Designed the top panel and adjusted it to fit onto the base.

I am highly favoring the spoilered images for the stick cover.





July 11th, 2014, 09:57 PM
I vote for the Yu and Yuuko one.

July 12th, 2014, 10:16 PM
Update: Finished the "rough" body. (v) Will need to sand the rough edges, paint it, and then order the cover.

Made the holes - since I didn't have a dremel (whatever that is), I had to do it the long way. Use a power drill to make as large a hole as possible, use the jigsaw to get as close to the required diameter, than use a file (coarse then smooth) to finish it off. I really need a new and better way :9 (i)

Also, I attached the hinges. And since it's on the outside, it has a greater degree of motion! Look! It's a full 90 deg rather than the 30 of the last one! (ii) (iii)

Added prongs to lock the panel in place when in use. Thus, the thing won't suddenly open when I tilt to adjust the screen, spilling everything out. :p (iv)


In-N-Out Double-Double & Animal Fries
July 13th, 2014, 02:07 PM
Hey dude, how much would you charge if I wanted to buy a fight stick from you? No body pillow or anything, just the wood box.

July 13th, 2014, 03:37 PM
If just for the box? .... hmm, if I had to put an estimate to it, it would probably be $30 10.00.

With 11 buttons + joystick = + $60 5

With PS360+ = + $65 5

Initial estimates put it at $165 20. Maybe. Would be cheaper if I don't need to pay for materials for the case and/or I don't need to use a ps360+ ; if I can find cheaper prices for these items, then it will go down. *shrugs* This does not include price of labor, just the material prices - and I don't know how much others will charge. I'll need to ask around.

In-N-Out Double-Double & Animal Fries
July 13th, 2014, 04:48 PM
eh, nvm then

I'll probably run down to makerspace and get a box lasercut

July 13th, 2014, 05:15 PM
I have no idea what that means, but you do that.

Besides, I probably won't sell these boxes ever; better to get a professional to do it than an amateur like me. I'm more or less testing out ideas, seeing what works and what doesn't by slapping it onto the device. It's a hobby since I've got nothing else to do, except work, chores, and training/studying.

July 14th, 2014, 06:55 PM
This is why you never let me color/paint stuff:


July 17th, 2014, 02:36 AM

July 17th, 2014, 06:24 AM

Most people tend to add a few more words to accurately describe their feelings, so forgive me for being unable to discern yours. How can I help.

July 31st, 2014, 10:06 PM
Right, well update:

Other than searching for a must-have picture for my pillow cover (sorry Yuu/Yuuko, too much would be lost if I did convert you T-T), I just got to make the stand and I'll be done. That, and maintenance.

So outta the result of a boring commute, I thought up my next fighting stick project. It's not a body pillow - but this will be a doozy, so I asked a friend for help! Here's a hint:


I'll post more when I got a more concrete plan of attack. Bye for now~

August 25th, 2014, 01:20 PM
With Autumn approaching and the temperature cooling, it will once again be comfortable to play on an actual body pillow. And for that, I'm going to order a new cover.

My current favorite are for SF right now.

These will go well with my M. Bison cosplay stick. Hue Hue Hue.

September 18th, 2014, 07:06 PM
... My cover is still in transit. i won't be bringing a dakimakura to GUTS 3 TwT - well, one that's not NSFW

So here's a simple pedestal... handle thing to carry it for now:

http://i.imgur.com/Sk2MCcr.jpg http://i.imgur.com/7BfeXOx.jpg

September 18th, 2014, 07:38 PM
You need to subtitle that second photo "By the power of Grayskull!".

September 26th, 2014, 06:15 PM

September 26th, 2014, 06:20 PM
Epiren, you're such a meanie!
Pushing Noel's buttons like that.
How much did the Dakimakura cost?

September 26th, 2014, 06:27 PM
Hey, her expression approved my touching :/

Kidding. All together it was 88ish - 32.99 for the cover and 54.99 for the pillow. Excluding shipping of course.

October 14th, 2014, 02:42 PM
God this is brilliant

October 17th, 2014, 03:00 AM
This... this sounds absolutely insane, but I totally approve. Hey, it may involve bringing a dakimakura around in public, but I'll be damned if you don't get credit for the skill and hard work it takes to build and wire a custom fight stick.

Random thought: Your "hold it like a cello" comment got me thinking - What if someone took a rock band guitar controller and replaced the silly strum button/whammy bar assembly with a joystick? It'd basically be a fight stick that you hold like a guitar. (I have no idea how you'd do the wiring though)

October 20th, 2014, 01:36 PM
Funny you should mention that ;D

November 3rd, 2014, 07:32 PM
Speaking of which, I never did show what I made for Halloween (in lieu of M. Bistick):

At venue.
RIP Skelebox: Sept 25 - Nov 1, 2014

http://i.imgur.com/C4dqlA5.jpg http://i.imgur.com/hVkdAVO.jpg
Close up of buttons. (Hitbox - think Keyboard Arrows - design)

Unfortunately, his freaking arm broke (cheap plastic...), but I've thought of creative ways around that. For example, "Do you need a hand?" and "Would you like me to throw you a bone?" ;) Equally unfortunately, Halloween is over, so I need to dismember him for his parts. :(

But on the plus side, I have Christmas to look forward to. :neco_arc: And given my previous disposition, you probably shouldn't be surprised when I reveal my next stick!

In the mean time though, I probably won't be using the other thread... how would I go about to merge threads?

November 3rd, 2014, 08:19 PM
Nice work Epiren! Also seems kinda uncomfortable to use :p (I guess that's not really the point tho).

Anyway, I believe you have to ask a mod to merge threads.

November 3rd, 2014, 08:46 PM
That is an awesome fight stick; I'm sure you made all sorts of spooky scary plays.

November 3rd, 2014, 11:28 PM

The scariest thing that happened was when my UP button (the big, blue one) fell out of its socket. During a match.

November 5th, 2014, 10:40 PM
Seasonal Themed Stick (2) - Christmas!