Introducing the Artistic Series

January 21, 2009 at 4:44 am 2 comments

Those of you who have been following my blog have seen these cases take shape.  I am still waiting on artwork for the Narra case but the Bubinga case is finally finished.  You can click on each of the images below for a larger version.  I was lucky enough to get this beautiful wood from a fellow member of  All the boards were 1/4″ thick and about 3″ wide.  Two of the 6 boards were a near perfect grain match.   I decided to use this match to make the top of the case.  Because of the narrowness of the boards this also determined the depth of the case.

Top View

Top View

I wanted this case to be one of my full custom hardwood case.  Each control in the case gets some form of the main wood from the case.  To that end I took one of the small cuttoffs from the case sides and passed it through my bandsaw for veneers.  I had just loaded my bandsaw with a new blade as wide as it could handle and tuned it up for the blade.  Surprisingly I was able to get 3 veneers out of the 1/4″ thick piece.  After some sanding and a few coats of polyurathane they were ready to be cut and inserted into the buttons.

Side Buttons

Side Buttons

Main Buttons

Main Buttons

Thanks to another member of I was able to procure a small turning block to match the rest of the case.  This I had planed on using to make a normal sized ball top.  However due to one dimension being just a tad small and a slight misalignment of the center I ended up with a small balltop.  This top is 30mm instead of the standard 35mm.  With the size and scale of the case I think that this was a happy mistake.  As you can see I also make a Bubinga dust cover to match.  Because the top panel was only 1/4″ thick I decided to show the mounting screws and choose solid brass.



The corner blocks needed to be just as nice as the main wood.  I also wanted it to contrast to give the case some character.  I went to my small but growing stash of special lumber.  What caught my attention was some Curly Spalted Maple.  After carefully choosing the section of the Maple board I cut out the corner blocks.  With even more care I laid out and cut the case corners and glued these 3/4″ square blanks into the resulting spaces.

Accent Corner Blocks

Accent Corner Blocks

One final detail is the bottom panel.  The Bubinga was so beautiful from both sides I wanted to show it off.  I had sanded and polished both sides of the panel prior to assembly.  Then drilled the holes for the controls.  After the finish coat of polyurathane was applied and dried I installed a clear plexiglas bottom panel.

Clear Bottom Panel

Clear Bottom Panel

Here you can see the controls.  A Sanwa JLF joystick, Seimitsu translucent main buttons and Seimitsu side buttons.  These are wired to a Cthulhu board.  This control board allows this joystick to be used on a PS3 or personal computer.  All these parts I purchased from  There is one final stop for this case before it is offered for sale.  My local woodworker’s association has a contest at next months meeting and this case will be my entry.

UPDATE: This case won 3rd place at the contest.  It is now being offered for sale with an asking price of $350.  Please send an email if you are interested in purchasing this beautiful case.

I want to thank you for reading this entry into my blog.  Please leave any comments below.

Final Shot

Final Shot


Entry filed under: Joystick.

Production continues and Escalates. More progress on the Production Runs

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Jay De Guzman  |  January 22, 2009 at 12:07 am

    This is truly a piece of work and an incredible masterpiece.

    If the price is reasonable for a custom I’d be willing to buy this and just keep it as a souvenir.

    It seems so fragile yet so… awesome.

    Great work!!!


  • 2. Bencao  |  January 23, 2009 at 8:21 am

    very nice work! Unbelievable!

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He who works with his hands is a laborer.
He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman.
He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist.
– St. Francis of Assisi
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