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Author Topic: Two-Headed Beast -- Finished  (Read 68917 times)

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Nephasth

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Two-Headed Beast -- Finished
« on: January 20, 2011, 08:41:13 pm »


--------------------------

CONCEPT PHASE

After months of thinking about building a MAME machine, I have finally come to a definitive decision as to what exactly Iím going to do. I acquired a 4 player, 2 monitor Run N Gun that had been converted from a Cyberball for dirt cheap on CL about 4 months ago. I have never been a fan of sports arcade games, but two working monitors for a mere $80, I couldnít pass it up. It sat in storage still tarped up for a couple of months after I got it. Once I decided to convert it to a MAME machine, I brought it over to my house and set it up in my garage with my GORF.

I turned it on to check out its working condition. The left monitor was way out of whack, and I thought it might need a cap kit. But after asking around on KLOV, I found out it just needed a ton of adjustments. Now both monitors are crisp, bright, and burn free.

Player 1ís joystick only worked in two directions. I pulled the left control panel back and found two broken wires at the CP connector. After repairing those, all the controls are functioning properly. One of the speakers was also shot. I didnít have an exact match, but did find one (from a Phoenix cab I got for free) that fit, and after wiring it up it seems to be working just fine. Well, after playing this game to test everything out, Run N Gun grew on me. I love beating the crap out of anybody who comes over on this thing.>:D But the potential this machine has for MAME is awesome.

Planned Build Specs:

Asus P5LP-LE micro-ATX motherboard
Intel Pentium D processor
250 GB hard drive
4 GB memory
Windows XP
Hyperspin FE
ArcadeVGA 3000
2x Wells Gardner 19K7601 monitors
I-PAC4
2x PACLED64s or 3x LEDWizs
4x Mag-Stick Plus joysticks
Black 2 ľĒ USB Trackball


Each control panel is only 19.5Ē wide. So in order to fit a trackball, Iíve decided to have interchangeable control panels. The ďstockĒ control panels have old school Atari logo sticks and three way buttons. Iíve got a friend that has access to industrial brake presses and materials. Heíll be able to duplicate the control panels with whatever holes I want in them. For normal play, both the left and right control panels will have two joysticks, one with a seven button layout and the other with a four button layout. Players 1 and 3 will be on the left side and 2 and 4 will be on the right. No more bumping elbows while playing the fighter games! In two player games each player will get their own screen. With the mag-stick plus joys, it will be a blast playing games like Robotron and Smash TV. I have also designed a trackball panel to be interchangeable with the left control panel for when people want to play the trackball games. There will be three buttons on each side of the trackball (itís just not right to discriminate against lefties ;)). In the future I may make two spinner control panels and also a couple steering wheel control panels.

There is tons of room inside this cabinet. I plan on keeping the cabinetís power supply and isolation transformers for the monitors. The motherboard and other computer components will be mounted inside towards the back of the cab. I will put in some extra boards between the computer components and the front space of the cab to be able to use the front for storage while protecting the guts. The storage will be used for console controllers, light guns, and the other control panels.

I already have MAME and Hyperspin set up on the computer and have all the preview movies loaded and working for each rom. Once my buddy gets those control panels made (hopefully within the next couple weeks), the converting/building will begin. I will start with the controls and installing the computer to get the machine functional/playable. After that, Iíll be focusing on cabinet restoration and making it pretty. Things to do for that: fill in blemishes, paint, new t-molding, cut new bezels, smoked monitor glass, custom marquee (maybe within 2 weeks), cabinet art/lighting.

Once this is converted to MAME I will probably be selling the Run N Gun board and marquee, as well as the Atari logo joysticks and the three way buttons.

I hope to have the entire project complete by the end of the year. Weíll see how it goes and Iíll update along the way, bear with me.
« Last Edit: July 14, 2013, 12:15:59 pm by Nephasth »

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Concept Phase)
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2011, 10:40:11 pm »
i can't wait to see how this turns out.  good luck, and take lots of pictures
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Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Concept Phase)
« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2011, 10:19:27 am »
Just to give a hint at the design of the beast, these little 8" x 10" beauties will be mounted to the cab. For those of you who frequent the KLOV forums, you know where I got these.  ;D


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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Concept Phase)
« Reply #3 on: January 22, 2011, 10:38:08 am »
so, youre selling the run n gun boards? I LOVE that game.
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Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Concept Phase)
« Reply #4 on: January 22, 2011, 11:49:24 am »
so, youre selling the run n gun boards? I LOVE that game.

I'll keep you in mind when it comes time to part with Run N Gun.

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Concept Phase)
« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2011, 11:13:57 am »
Well, I'm glad the manufacturing of my control panels has been delayed. I have changed my mind on what I will be using for my controls as well as some of the cabinet lighting. Instead of the Magstick Plus joys, I've decided to go with U360s. With those, there will be no need to adjust restrictor plates to switch from 8 way to 4 way. This will be easier for people unfamiliar with the set up. The U360s will remap if need be for whatever game is selected. I have also decided to wait on implementing the trackball panel. This will allow me to get the cabinet up and running sooner and cheaper. Thanks to the U360's input mode and available shift function, I will not have an immediate use for an IPAC (once I add the trackball panel, I will be adding an IPAC or Mini-pac). I was originally going to use button RGB LEDs for my marquee and cabinet lighting, but the other day I found some cool RGB LED strips: http://www.adafruit.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=285&zenid=1d9b3f50f7de2589ab4a4b21a6a4b769 They're cheaper on eBay. Besides plan changes, nothing else is new. I am expecting my marquee to show up some time next week, I'm excited!

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Concept Phase)
« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2011, 06:53:04 pm »
I've been waiting since the end of December for my Office Depot rewards card to come, well it finally showed up today! Free parts for the MAME computer!!! :woot

2.1 Speaker System


Belkin 5-port USB PCI Expansion Card


The speakers have a nice wired remote volume control / on/off switch / headphone jack which will mount nicely under one of the control panels. I wanted to buy another USB PCI card with my rewards card, but that was all they had... Hopefully they get another back in stock soon.
« Last Edit: February 24, 2011, 06:56:35 pm by Nephasth »

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Concept Phase)
« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2011, 07:32:06 pm »
WORK BEGINS!


Got bored today and removed the Run N Gun side art from the front.


The original Cyberball art is pretty well intact. Aside from the adhesive residue, it almost looks brand new. Kind of sad to be covering it back up and poking holes through it soon...


A couple detailed shots...


« Last Edit: March 02, 2011, 08:02:12 pm by Nephasth »

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Concept Phase)
« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2011, 02:00:19 pm »
I decided to remove the Cyberball sideart and all of the adhesive was left behind on the machine. I tried a few different adhesive removers and found Rustoleum's adhesive remover worked the best. Goo Gone and Goof Off didn't work worth a damn. The Goof Off evaporated within 30 seconds and didn't do anything to remove the adhesive. The Goo Gone just sat on top and didn't make the adhesive any easier to remove even after letting it sit. After letting Rustoleum's adhesive remover sit for 5 minutes, all the adhesive came up easily with a scraper and the little bits that were left over wiped off easily with a dry cloth. However, all the products I used didn't harm the paint underneath at all, which was nice.

The products I used:

I highly recommend the Rustoleum!

After the adhesive was removed:


The huge ball of adhesive that was removed:


I thought I would tape my invaders up to the machine to get an idea of what it will look like when done. They'll be sitting about a half inch further away from the cabinet when they're finally mounted. They will also be RGB LED back lit as well. Here's a couple pics:





Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2011, 01:54:35 pm »
I dismantled the coin doors this morning in preparation for powder coating. If my control panels are done soon (this week or next), I'll be sending those off with the coin doors as well. Both the control panels and the coin doors will be powder coated a stainless steelish or aluminumish color. Thinking about doing the top monitor glass retainers too, but they're textured black and in great shape. I think powder coating them a silver color might be distracting.


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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #10 on: March 03, 2011, 02:03:03 pm »
just curious, why powser coat them steelish, instead of just taking a wire brush and polishing them up?

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #11 on: March 03, 2011, 02:19:42 pm »
just curious, why powser coat them steelish, instead of just taking a wire brush and polishing them up?

Easier to clean and to protect the metal.

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2011, 10:19:07 pm »
This looks like its gonna be a good project. I will be watching intently.

Good tip on the rustoleum adhesive remover, I hate goo gone. after I use it, I feel I need something that removes the goo gone film.

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #13 on: March 03, 2011, 11:09:14 pm »
Nice. I like those space invaders! That's a great place for them on that cab...

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #14 on: March 04, 2011, 05:41:28 pm »
Thanks for the comments guys!

While my coin doors are in pieces, figured I would tackle the coin reject buttons. Here's some more invaders.


Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #15 on: March 05, 2011, 06:50:28 pm »
Minor update. I received my ArcadeVGA yesterday from Milhouse, thanks again man! Installed it and the drivers today. I have ran it on an arcade monitor yet, but it is working great via the pass through to my computer monitor. I also ordered a small batch of button and switch combinations from Paradise Arcade Shop (thanks Bryan!) to help me better decide what I want to install in the cabinet. The buttons will be lit with Paradise's RGB LEDs. I ran into a similar problem dawolv did with his RGB Ultralux buttons. Thanks to his tip on rerouting the RGB LED wires, I was able to quickly come up with a similar solution for my buttons. Here's pics of the button mod for the RGB LED wires:

I drilled two holes in the switch mount base for the wires to pass through.


Here's the wires routed through the holes.


And a couple of assembled pics. No problems with the button hitting the wires while pressed now.  :)


« Last Edit: March 06, 2011, 03:07:09 pm by Nephasth »

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #16 on: March 05, 2011, 08:16:46 pm »
Didn't mean to double post today, but... MY MARQUEE JUST SHOWED UP!!! ;D

However, it wasn't exactly what I ordered. I wanted it in a brushed aluminum finish and it came in just an aluminum finish. I may be able to get my buddy who is manufacturing my CPs to throw some grain on the marquee. The cut out portion is currently taped to the larger piece and isn't exactly centered. But when it is finished, the open area will be black and the cutout portion will stand out about an inch from the rest of the marquee. The cutout will also be RGB LED backlit like the invaders and this should provide a nice glow to the marquee. They're a little crappy, but here's some pics of the marquee:



Lit up with the current set up, being able to see the fluorescent bulb sucks... Doesn't show the glow effect I'm going for at all either, but here it is.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2011, 02:06:04 pm by Nephasth »

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #17 on: March 06, 2011, 08:38:53 pm »
Nice! That marquee will really look good with some brushed texture. I love the cutout glow effect.

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #18 on: March 06, 2011, 09:32:52 pm »
In progress: Rat Rod Jukebox ** 99% Complete **
Completed: The Island Cocktail, and here
Completed: No Name Upright

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #19 on: March 08, 2011, 05:47:01 pm »
Minor update. Got some freebies from Molex today. These are the connectors I'll be using for the control panel harnesses. There will be three connectors for each control panel. Each control panel will use 1 of the 36 pin connectors (the large white ones) and 2 of the 24 pin connectors (the smaller white ones). The mating connectors for the 36 pin connectors I have now are on back order and should be here in 3 weeks. The small black connectors are for the U360s when I get them. The silver rolls are the pins for the connector housings, 200 pins per roll. Yes, all of this was FREE! Even shipping. Not the crimper tool though, I've had that for a while and it works great for crimping terminal pins. I just couldn't justify spending $8 per harness for the U360s when I could build them myself for $0.56 per foot. I'm estimating it will cost me under $2.00 for 4 button harnesses for the U360s. I know, I'm cheap.


I also got some stainless steel tamper proof torx screws for the control panels today. My screw gun slips on the phillips screws and it's only a matter of time they're all jacked up. These screws will be nicer and should keep curious kids out from under my control panels. Old screws on the left, new on the right.


I've also been doing some research on DIY brushed aluminum. I think I'm going to give it a shot on my marquee. I just hope I'll be able to get a close enough match to the brushed finish on the invaders. We'll see how that goes.

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #20 on: March 08, 2011, 06:02:07 pm »
I've also been doing some research on DIY brushed aluminum. I think I'm going to give it a shot on my marquee. I just hope I'll be able to get a close enough match to the brushed finish on the invaders. We'll see how that goes.

Not knowing what the Invaders brushed looks like in person, I can offer you this: I had great luck with creating a brushed aluminum look for my H.T. using my belt sander and a fine grit paper following the length of the aluminum. Just go slow and gentle and she'll come (out) as you wish.  For my purpose the belt sander alone was perfectly fine, leaving fine grooves and a nice look.
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Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #21 on: March 08, 2011, 06:30:40 pm »
Not knowing what the Invaders brushed looks like in person, I can offer you this: I had great luck with creating a brushed aluminum look for my H.T. using my belt sander and a fine grit paper following the length of the aluminum. Just go slow and gentle and she'll come (out) as you wish.  For my purpose the belt sander alone was perfectly fine, leaving fine grooves and a nice look.

Thanks for the tip. I'm going to try brushing the aluminum by hand first. If it takes too long and doesn't give a deep enough scratch I will definitely be trying out the belt sander technique.

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #22 on: March 09, 2011, 02:16:45 am »
looking like a plan is coming together!  :applaud: :applaud: Its weird, but you dealt with the led wire routing with led modules almost the same as I did:

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=109040.msg1165972#msg1165972

When I received my led's from bryan, a couple were missing or had dislodged wire leads straight out of the package (Which he replaced with DOUBLE the led's when I told him about it, talk about above and beyond!). Reason I mention this, is that you might want to add a spot of hot glue @ the hole drilled to prevent the wires from being tugged loose from the module. If you take a look at my pics, thats what I did. Trying to re-solder leads to those surface mount component boards are tough cause things are sooo much smaller. Thats my two cents anyway. Good show! I'll be watching!!

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #23 on: March 09, 2011, 09:41:53 am »
looking like a plan is coming together!  :applaud: :applaud: Its weird, but you dealt with the led wire routing with led modules almost the same as I did:

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=109040.msg1165972#msg1165972

When I received my led's from bryan, a couple were missing or had dislodged wire leads straight out of the package (Which he replaced with DOUBLE the led's when I told him about it, talk about above and beyond!). Reason I mention this, is that you might want to add a spot of hot glue @ the hole drilled to prevent the wires from being tugged loose from the module. If you take a look at my pics, thats what I did. Trying to re-solder leads to those surface mount component boards are tough cause things are sooo much smaller. Thats my two cents anyway. Good show! I'll be watching!!

It would be nice if the translucent IL buttons already had holes for LED wires. I was thinking about the hot glue idea on the back side of the board to keep the wires secure. But the holes I drilled are so close to the base of the button that when the wires are routed through them they hold the LED firmly against the button and there is no movement at all. A spot of hot glue at the holes themselves sounds like a great idea to prevent any accidents.

Edit: It is weird. Great minds think alike! ;D
« Last Edit: March 09, 2011, 10:07:31 am by Nephasth »

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #24 on: March 09, 2011, 10:16:56 am »
When I stripped and refinished my coin doors I used one of these:
http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100422668/h_d2/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10051&catalogId=10053

I almost decided not to paint the doors because the cup brush left a really niced brushed finish, but in the end, I went ahead and painted.  You should try it, its super easy, cehap and works.

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #25 on: March 09, 2011, 12:33:59 pm »
Not knowing what the Invaders brushed looks like in person, I can offer you this: I had great luck with creating a brushed aluminum look for my H.T. using my belt sander and a fine grit paper following the length of the aluminum. Just go slow and gentle and she'll come (out) as you wish.  For my purpose the belt sander alone was perfectly fine, leaving fine grooves and a nice look.

Thanks for the tip. I'm going to try brushing the aluminum by hand first. If it takes too long and doesn't give a deep enough scratch I will definitely be trying out the belt sander technique.

Took too long for me, but I had about 16ft of 2" wide aluminum stock to do :D
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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #26 on: March 10, 2011, 09:48:29 pm »
Thanks for the tip. I'm going to try brushing the aluminum by hand first. If it takes too long and doesn't give a deep enough scratch I will definitely be trying out the belt sander technique.

If I might make an observation, even brushed aluminum will be a bit mundane in appearance for a marquee.  Since you have little to lose at this point, you may want to try doing something known as "engine turning".  There is a good discussion here, showing methods and results of the process.  It might look very nice if you did this only on one part or the other to provide some contrast between the two.

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #27 on: March 10, 2011, 10:27:02 pm »
  Since you have little to lose at this point, you may want to try doing something known as "engine turning".

Curiously, I was recently looking at adhesive decal sheets of this on eBay for the RatRod project. The stuff was inexpensive and looked really good..
In progress: Rat Rod Jukebox ** 99% Complete **
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Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #28 on: March 10, 2011, 11:06:51 pm »
Thanks for the tip. I'm going to try brushing the aluminum by hand first. If it takes too long and doesn't give a deep enough scratch I will definitely be trying out the belt sander technique.

If I might make an observation, even brushed aluminum will be a bit mundane in appearance for a marquee.  Since you have little to lose at this point, you may want to try doing something known as "engine turning".  There is a good discussion here, showing methods and results of the process.  It might look very nice if you did this only on one part or the other to provide some contrast between the two.

That sounds like a great option for the larger part of the marquee. I will have to keep it in mind.

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #29 on: March 22, 2011, 11:16:07 am »
Delays, delays, delays.  :banghead:  I'm starting to see how some of these projects take so long to complete. I've decided to do the engine turning on the marquee. Just need to order in some parts for my die grinder to make the circles as big as I want them. Here's the pattern I'm going to use, circles are 3" in diameter. This was drawn up on 8.5" x 11" paper.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2011, 11:18:45 am by Nephasth »

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #30 on: March 22, 2011, 07:59:19 pm »
Nephasth-
I have done a lot of hobby metal finishing.  I would not attempt engine turning without a drill press which you likely have.  Even then, it takes practice and you need a system to locate your turnings precisely both x and y or it will look "organic" rather than machined.  I didn't follow RandyT's link but I learned from internet and youtube how to do it. 

if you go with the straight brushed, again use a fence along one or both long edges of the marquee so that whatever you're making the scratches with stays absolutely straight and doesn't rotate.  I have had really good results with the red scotchbrite pads/blocks on aluminum, with the pad double stick taped to a wood block that rides along the side fence.

Another finish that looks really good on bare metal is to take a flap sander disk on an angle grinder and make swirls/spirals in a random pattern.  that was huge a few years ago but is now not seen everyday anymore.  The good thing is if you try any/all of these and don't like them you can sand them right back out. 

If I ever do a 4P cab it will have to be dual monitor like this or that corner arcade build-so awesome.

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #31 on: March 22, 2011, 08:29:48 pm »
I would love to do the engine turning in a drill press. Problem is, the marquee is too wide to achieve my desired pattern, it would hit the base of the press less than half way through (maybe, it's 12 3/4" wide, I have access to two drill presses, might luck out and one might be 6 1/2" or more out from the base). I'm going to pencil a grid onto the marquee to mark the centerlines for where the discs will meet the metal. I'll be using red scotchbrite roloc pads on my die grinder (or drill press if the marquee will fit). It's not exact, but like you said, if it doesn't turn out too well I'll be able to sand it out.

Knave Jack

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #32 on: March 22, 2011, 08:38:32 pm »
Not to make the choices even harder, but if you go hit http://chemetalco.com/finishes.htm there are some truly amazing finishes available. The only down side is you have to buy a full sheet(4' x 8'). I have several customers who use them, if this is an option for what your doing, let me know the pattern you want and I can ask them if they have an off cut.javascript:void(0);

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #33 on: March 22, 2011, 11:05:21 pm »
Strike one. :angry: First drill press is only 5" from center of drill head to the base.

TopJimmyCooks

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #34 on: March 23, 2011, 12:14:36 pm »
what a pain.  must be a benchtop model.  any floor model will have 12" of swing (center of support post to center of drill, so 10" effective usable.  14" swing is common too.  If you're near NC you can use mine.  maybe engine turn the top and bottom then run a brushed stripe down the center of the backplate and letters?  You can mask one finish from the other with frog tape or electrical tape. 

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #35 on: March 23, 2011, 01:35:25 pm »
It was a benchtop press. The one at work is a floor press though, we'll see how that goes tonight...

Good news, the one at work is 7 1/2". I'll give the drill press technique a shot.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2011, 05:06:44 pm by Nephasth »

Pixelhugger

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #36 on: March 24, 2011, 03:58:01 pm »
I LOVE THOSE INVADERS!   :o :o :o  Where'd you get them?? Are they machined aluminum?

You mentioned the KLOV forums... I can't seem to find any mention of them there.  Did I miss something in the thread?
Project mega thread HERE

Nephasth

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #37 on: March 24, 2011, 05:01:16 pm »
They're a composite aluminum (plastic sandwiched between two sheets of aluminum). Here's the thread. I had the same guy cut my marquee as well. VERY reasonable on his pricing.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2011, 05:02:57 pm by Nephasth »

Nephasth

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THE CONTROL PANELS HAVE BEEN MADE!!!
« Reply #38 on: March 26, 2011, 03:26:15 pm »
Got my control panels from my friend DMEN today. They turned out amazing! I thought I would go into a little detail as to how they came to be in this post.

Late November/early December I started playing around with button and joystick layouts. Space was a major issue for figuring out the layout, and is ultimately what determined having players 1 and 3 on one panel, and 2 and 4 on the other (which I think works out great). I took the top surface measurements of the existing CPs and cut out a paper template of the same size. After scouring google images for some layouts, I found one I thought I could work with. I printed and cut it out and started playing with different layouts. Here are a couple of my first layouts.





I ended up going with a kind of curved 7 button layout for players 1 and 2. The horizontal spacing is 35mm center to center. I got the "curve" from the natural placement of my fingers (and thumb for the 7th button) at the 35mm horizontal spacing. For players 3 and 4 I took part of the 7 button layout and rotated it 90 degrees. Once I was satisfied I transfered those measurements along with the dimensions of buttons and joysticks and layed it out in Photoshop.



I had been talking with my friend DMEN about what I was doing and he offered to make duplicate CPs with my layouts at his work. To make sure they were as accurate as possible I made out some prints with all the dimensions in Visio and handed them over to DMEN.





Several weeks passed with DMEN being far too busy to get to these (which worked out for the better). He asked me if I could provide a .DXF file to make things easier by using the laser to cut the panels out. Luckily I had changed my mind to use U360 joysticks instead of the Mag Sticks. This changed the mounting holes for the sticks. I made the changes in the prints and it was as easy as just saving it as a .DXF in Visio. DMEN said it took all of 8 seconds for the laser to load up the .DXF and get ready to start the cuts. No adjustments were needed for the file on his end at all. After the laser cut out the panels and holes it was just a matter of getting them to a brake operator to make the bends. They came out looking BEAUTIFUL! I like the finish so much I think I'm going to powder coat these clear.





Here is one mounted to the cab. It's not 100% perfect, but it only requires a small adjustment to the wood and it will be ready to go.



For the buttons I'll be using a combo of black and translucent IL buttons from Paradise Arcade Shop. I'll have to order twice as many buttons, but I think it will be worth it for the effect I'm going for. The outter part of the button will be translucent and the plunger will be black creating a "ring of light" effect around each active button. Here's a few pics with a test button installed in one of the panels. The first is with no light.







What do you guys think so far?
« Last Edit: March 26, 2011, 04:37:03 pm by Nephasth »

push2reject

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Re: Two-Headed Beast MAME Conversion (Work Has Begun)
« Reply #39 on: March 26, 2011, 03:43:33 pm »
Looking good!  That layout is nice.  Perfect for 2 player and 4 player games.
On the other side of the screen, it all looks so easy.  -Kevin Flynn