What is a wiring harness? (Explained by an Expert)

A wiring harness, in the context of arcade sticks, fight sticks, and gaming controllers, is a collection of wires, connectors, and sometimes protective sleeves designed to transmit electrical signals between various components within the device.

The wiring harness helps organize and route wires neatly, ensuring reliable connections between buttons, joysticks, and the main controller board or printed circuit board (PCB).

Wiring harnesses play an essential role in the functionality and performance of arcade sticks and fight sticks, as they enable communication between the user’s inputs (e.g., button presses and joystick movements) and the game system or console.

Some key features of wiring harnesses include:

  1. Connectors: Wiring harnesses usually have connectors at each end, which plug into the corresponding components, such as buttons, joystick microswitches, and the controller board. These connectors make it easy to install, remove, or swap out parts without the need for soldering or advanced technical skills.
  2. Cable Management: A well-organized wiring harness helps keep the internal components of an arcade stick or fightstick neat, preventing wires from tangling or getting damaged during use or maintenance.
  3. Compatibility: Some wiring harnesses are designed to be compatible with specific brands or types of components, such as Sanwa or Seimitsu buttons and joysticks. When building or modifying an arcade stick, it’s essential to choose a wiring harness that matches the components you plan to use.
  4. Ease of Maintenance: A well-designed wiring harness makes it simpler to troubleshoot issues, replace faulty components, or perform upgrades to your arcade stick or fight stick.

Whether you’re building a custom arcade stick, modifying an existing one, or performing repairs, a wiring harness is a critical component that ensures reliable connections and efficient signal transmission between the various parts of your gaming device.

Illustration of a smiling man with long hair and beard sitting in a gaming room with computer equipment in the background.
Mike "The Destroyer" Johnson

Bio: Mike got hooked on fight sticks after a jaw-dropping arcade visit back in high school. Since then, he's spent countless hours perfecting his moves and combos, constantly pushing himself to improve. With his relentless drive, Mike has become a force to be reckoned with in local and online tournaments. He's now dedicated to sharing his expertise and passion for fight sticks with the world. Favorite Fight Stick: Razer Panthera Evo Favorite Games: Street Fighter V, Tekken 7