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Author Topic: Tron Legacy - Update 05/03/2016 - Mala Woes  (Read 82535 times)

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wp34

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Tron Legacy - Update 05/03/2016 - Mala Woes
« on: December 10, 2011, 09:14:57 pm »
I’m building a cabinet based on the Tron Legacy theme.  The basic design is borrowed from Gamester with a few modifications.  I’ve been planning this for several years so I’m sure I’ve stolen ideas from many other projects.  In addition to Gamester you should see (hopefully) some influence from Martijn and Eypx as I reviewed their projects frequently while planning.

Like Johnny Cash and his Cadillac I obtained my parts “One Piece at a Time” over a number of years.

•   P1 U360, Project Arcade Book I – Christmas 2007
•   TT2 / Electric Ice Trackball – March 2008
•   P2 U360 – Christmas 2008
•   Coin Door – September 2009
•   Wells Gardner D9800 – August 2010
•   Project Arcade Book II - January 2011
•   Tron Stick Parts – March 2011
•   Black Laminate – September 2011

…with many orders for buttons spread in between. 

Pretty pathetic timeline but hopefully worth it in the end.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2016, 11:10:13 pm by wp34 »

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2011, 09:18:38 pm »
Laying out the template.  Shamelessly using Gamester’s plans that were obtained through Bothan spies.



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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2011, 09:30:11 pm »
I cut the template with a circular saw using a level as a straight-edge.






Then I cut the corners with a trim saw.



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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2011, 09:37:08 pm »
Good start, crisp corners!  Keep the picks coming ;)

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2011, 09:37:39 pm »
And now we have a finished template.



After all the planning it felt really good to finally have something resembling a cabinet made out of wood.  Even if it was just a template.  I sent my wife this picture and she accused me of photoshopping it.   ;D

This was back in October.  Then life got in the way and it was a month or so before I could start working again.  You know the drill.

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2011, 11:28:38 pm »
Since I'm going to laminate the sides I decided to go with 5/8" MDF so that 3/4" T-molding will cover the edges.  I special ordered two sheets from our local specialty store.  Even though I worked at a lumber yard for 3 years while in school and should know better I didn't check the width of the MDF when I picked it up.  Turns out they gave me 3/4" but like a rookie I didn't figure it out until after I had cut into it.   :banghead:

I was a little torqued at first but finally decided this would give me a chance to practice with my router.  So I ended up with a 3/4" template in addition to the one I made out of 1/4" hardboard earlier.  I also got to practice with my flush trim bit.

I went to order 2 more sheets of 5/8" MDF and they told me their supplier had 3 left but was discontinuing it.  I bought all 3 just in case and if I have some left over I'll just save it for another project.

They also mentioned that they could order 3/4 MDF pre-laminated from a local company.  I had already ordered my laminate but it might be something I explore for future project.




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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2011, 12:13:28 am »
On to cutting a circle.  I had some trouble with this part of the project initially.   I used the Edge Guide that came with my router as a jig.  You drill a 1/4" hold where you want the middle of the circle.  The jig has a slot the pin fits in and you rotate the router in a circle.  Sounds easy right?







What I did wrong was not support the area around the pin so it would stay flush with the work piece as I cut.  The waste piece started to fall away as I routed. This changed the center of my circle slightly and caused the jig and router to walk on me since my locking pin was drilled through what would become the waste piece. 

I didn't take a lot of pictures at this point because I was in damage control.  But you can see from this picture that the circle is not round.  Looks like the monitor will not stick out the sides so I got that going for me.



Since necessity is the mother of invention I used the frame from a round mirror that was slightly larger than the "circle" I had cut.  One pass with the flush trim bit and it is all good.









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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #7 on: December 11, 2011, 02:16:44 pm »
In order to make my sides I just used a Jigsaw to cut within a 1/2" or so from my template.  I then used a flush trim bit with my router to clean it up.



Now they tell you MDF is dirty.  But you have no idea until you put a router to it for real.  I covered a lot of my garage but it still wasn't enough.  There is dust everywhere and I don't think my garage will ever seem clean again.  I wanted to route in the driveway but it was too cold and windy the day I was working.   

I did try a bit of a makeshift dust collection after the first piece.  I hooked my ShopVac to my Jigsaw and using a Smart Strip (bought for this project) I rigged it so the vacuum would come on when ever I started the Jigsaw.  That worked pretty well but the Jigsaw doesn't kick out that much dust really.

I did the same thing with my router but the dust hood that came with it was not up to the task.  This is something I want to investigate in the near future.  I thought the hoses would get in the way but they really don't.  I think with an adequate hood it would help cut down on the mess. 

I did wear a mask when routing just in case.



And we finally have twins.  I'm pretty sure the spots you see in the picture are from the MDF dust still floating in the air.   ;D




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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #8 on: December 11, 2011, 04:56:55 pm »
Definitely a unique design!  I haven't seen the movie.  Worthwhile?
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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #9 on: December 11, 2011, 05:21:53 pm »
Definitely a unique design!  I haven't seen the movie.  Worthwhile?

I think so.  The story is a touch weak but the visuals, effects and soundtrack are amazing.   The callbacks to the first movie are also fun.  I think it looks better at home on BluRay than it did in the theater.

We went to see it as a family (including my mom) last year and had a great time.  The kids were so excited they wanted to watch the original right after we got home from the theater.  I had been struggling with a theme for a while and our experience at the movie cinched it for me. 

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #10 on: December 11, 2011, 08:58:09 pm »
Lookin' good so far. I'm looking forward to seeing your progress.

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #11 on: December 11, 2011, 10:26:32 pm »
progress is looking good so far.
Curious on what your going to do with the holes.


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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #12 on: December 11, 2011, 10:47:29 pm »
Thanks Le Chuck and mgb.   :cheers:

progress is looking good so far.
Curious on what your going to do with the holes.

Thanks gbeef.  My plan is to mount an Identity Disc hacked with brighter LED's in the hole.  I've made one prototype and I'm not 100% satisfied with it at the moment. 

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #13 on: December 14, 2011, 07:25:14 am »
 :applaud:

More info on the identity discs please?  Colors, materials, custom made or modding something?  Will they stay lit after someone takes them out and tosses them around?

Are you going black laminate?  What color of t-molding?

We need answers and more pics please!  Good job so far.  :cheers:

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #14 on: December 14, 2011, 07:58:03 pm »
:applaud:

More info on the identity discs please?  Colors, materials, custom made or modding something?  Will they stay lit after someone takes them out and tosses them around?

Are you going black laminate?  What color of t-molding?

We need answers and more pics please!  Good job so far.  :cheers:

This.  Interested to see where this is going.

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #15 on: December 14, 2011, 09:49:08 pm »
My plan is to mount an Identity Disc hacked with brighter LED's in the hole.  I've made one prototype and I'm not 100% satisfied with it at the moment. 

Try EL wire instead of LED's.   :cheers:

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #16 on: December 14, 2011, 10:29:11 pm »
More info on the identity discs please?  Colors, materials, custom made or modding something?  Will they stay lit after someone takes them out and tosses them around?

LOL - No.  I actually gave that some thought but realized I was going WAAAAAYYYY overboard.

The discs will be the deluxe toy model you can buy in toy stores.  I've picked up two of the black ones and one white one when they were on clearance.    I was pretty happy with the initial demo I did upgrading the lights until I saw this -

http://www.freewebs.com/inertiadesigns/disckits.htm


Are you going black laminate?  What color of t-molding?


Black laminate.  I'm leaning towards white T-molding but it depends on where I go with the disc/artwork.




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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #17 on: December 14, 2011, 10:32:06 pm »
Try EL wire instead of LED's.   :cheers:

I'm going to order some EL Wire and EL Tape to play around with. Do you have any experience with EL Wire?  I've read where you can hear a high pitched hum while it is turned on.  Like a bad fluorescent bulb.  It sure looks cool though.

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #18 on: December 15, 2011, 06:42:37 pm »
You need a lot of neon and also stuff that reacts under blacklights.  Pimp this up!

And if you're music is loud enough, you can't hear the hum of the EL wire!  I can hear some classic Tron music playing to mask any ambient noise.

 :applaud:

And those disc kits look very nice.  Ordered any yet?

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #19 on: December 15, 2011, 06:47:47 pm »
Doesn't el wire dim over time?
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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #20 on: December 15, 2011, 09:03:23 pm »
Those upgraded ID Discs are the ---steaming pile of meadow muffin---!  That is going to be fantastic.  Instead of a Bezel you should have an have a rotating MCP cone that displays all the different TRON levels RPG, COBOL, BASIC, FORTRAN, SNOBOL, PL1, PASCAL, ALGOL, ASSEMBLY, OS, JCL, USER 

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #21 on: December 15, 2011, 10:40:36 pm »
You need a lot of neon and also stuff that reacts under blacklights.  Pimp this up!

And if you're music is loud enough, you can't hear the hum of the EL wire!  I can hear some classic Tron music playing to mask any ambient noise.

 :applaud:

And those disc kits look very nice.  Ordered any yet?

There will be Bling!  There will also be music you Daft Punk!

Doesn't el wire dim over time?

You are correct.   I'm really more intrigued by EL Tape at the moment.  I'm not sure if that has the same issue or not.

Those upgraded ID Discs are the ---steaming pile of meadow muffin---!  That is going to be fantastic.  Instead of a Bezel you should have an have a rotating MCP cone that displays all the different TRON levels RPG, COBOL, BASIC, FORTRAN, SNOBOL, PL1, PASCAL, ALGOL, ASSEMBLY, OS, JCL, USER 

As a former main frame programmer I like that idea.

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #22 on: December 16, 2011, 10:44:29 am »

Doesn't el wire dim over time?

You are correct.   I'm really more intrigued by EL Tape at the moment.  I'm not sure if that has the same issue or not.

I'm glad this came up.  I was considering using EL Tape/sheet under smoked plexi on my next build to make instructions and button labels light up depending on what game was selected (mainly golden tee instructions and button labels for sports games).  
I had no idea about the noise or dimming over time issues (and the stuff isn't cheap).
Please share your findings!  :)

FYI (even though the subject didn't come up), I tinkered with lights inside a t-molding slot with clear t-molding in front of it and it doesn't work very well.
The clear t-molding doesn't diffuse the light whatsoever.  EL tape on each side of the slot might work, but it would take a lot.
You are probably better off sticking with white....maybe placing a blacklight nearby.

I'm really looking forward to this build.  
Particularly because it is by someone who has been on the boards long enough to know what they want and how to go about executing it.
 :cheers:

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #23 on: December 16, 2011, 11:39:38 am »

I'm glad this came up.  I was considering using EL Tape/sheet under smoked plexi on my next build to make instructions and button labels light up depending on what game was selected (mainly golden tee instructions and button labels for sports games).

I'd like to do something similar.  Once I get my Christmas shopping done I'm going to order some EL Tape to test with.  From the pictures it looks thick enough that you would have to route a channel for it to sit in so the plexi sits flush.  I'd like to see it in person before I go too crazy.

My main concern is what it looks like unlit.  Some of the white EL products reportedly look pink when turned off for example.  I like your idea of smoked plexi.  I had planned on going with clear but smoked should look a lot better in the daylight.  Thanks for sharing that.   :cheers:

FYI (even though the subject didn't come up), I tinkered with lights inside a t-molding slot with clear t-molding in front of it and it doesn't work very well.
The clear t-molding doesn't diffuse the light whatsoever.  EL tape on each side of the slot might work, but it would take a lot.
You are probably better off sticking with white....maybe placing a blacklight nearby.

That is an interesting idea.  I wonder if EL Wire on each side of the slot would work?

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #24 on: December 16, 2011, 12:19:42 pm »

FYI (even though the subject didn't come up), I tinkered with lights inside a t-molding slot with clear t-molding in front of it and it doesn't work very well.
The clear t-molding doesn't diffuse the light whatsoever.  EL tape on each side of the slot might work, but it would take a lot.
You are probably better off sticking with white....maybe placing a blacklight nearby.

There are two options to fix this (Clear never works well as you stated it doesn't diffuse the light)
1) with a fine grit sand paper scuff the tmolding up so it will diffuse the surface
2) User strips of white window film that will diffuse the t-moulding and will be simple to install just like a sticker
3) Lightly coat it with a watered down mixture of paint so it's semi transparent and spray it onto the t-moulding
4) Ditch the t-moulding and run strips of leds in the channel in the wood then apply an already diffused plastic strip and glue it on.
5) Run the thin white ropelight on the edges I think the round shape would work well with a tron theme (http://img.diytrade.com/cdimg/1220163/13886380/0/1281665704/White_LED_Neon_Rope_light_LED_Neon_Flex.jpg)

There are a few other ways to do this but these are the easiest and cheapest

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #25 on: December 16, 2011, 09:42:48 pm »
I've never laminated before. I decided to make a small sample piece first before I tackled a section as large as a cabinet side.  My dad was a woodworker and I remember as a kid when he would make a project that used laminate how it almost seemed like magic when he was done.  You buy things that are laminated you don't make them.  I was pleased when my kids had the same reaction when I brought my sample home. 



Another thing that has been bothering me is the T-molding.  I'm using a 5/8" piece of MDF with 3/4 T-molding.  As I feared the T-molding is going to leave a small lip.  I think if I go with black T-molding you won't even notice but I would really like to use white or some other color as an accent. 



I tried trimming a sample piece as outlined here. The chisel I used was not nearly sharp enough and the edge of the T-molding was very jagged after I trimmed it.   This method recommended by Bender looks interesting and it would mean buying another new tool.  ;D

I'll try another sample using a sharp chisel before I decide which way to go.

As a side-note my wife and daughter think I am being way too anal about the T-molding fit.   :dunno



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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #26 on: December 18, 2011, 12:05:12 am »
Sure it will look great, no matter what you do.   ;D
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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #27 on: December 18, 2011, 08:51:05 am »
Obsess away. If you don't it gives them the justification to say their favorite phrase, "I don't want that thing in my house" or if they are the passive-aggressive type "Wouldn't that look better in the (room where guests never go)." Perfection guarantees choice placement.  :lol

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #28 on: December 19, 2011, 09:17:11 am »
Thanks wizkid32 and Le Chuck. 

My wife has been very supportive.  She actually bought my two U360's as presents and is painting my Q*Bert restore.  Her only concern is that after trying MAME I want a couple of dedicated cabinets. She will say "how many are you going to have" or my favorite "that much to play just one game".   >:D

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #29 on: December 19, 2011, 07:42:29 pm »
Does your wife share your love of Tron?   ;D
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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #30 on: December 19, 2011, 09:28:19 pm »
Does your wife share your love of Tron?   ;D

Ya got me there.  Although the kids love Tron so I got that going.   :D

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #31 on: December 19, 2011, 10:36:28 pm »
I picked up my laminate off eBay. With shipping it was $35 a sheet.  This laminate is much less ridged than I was expecting.  I think it is because it is rated for vertical use.  The stuff I remember my dad using seemed thicker and more sturdy and I assume was rated for counter tops.  I found moving the full sheets around by myself difficult and even had one sheet rip on me--although it was in a waste area so no biggie.

I used the tutorial posted by Epyx here as well as information gleaned from Martijn's builds. 

Laying out the sheet.



I glued each piece and layed the MDF on top of the full sheet of 4x8 laminate. 



The only problem I had with this method was that the laminate is so brittle that I had a hard time cutting it to size.  The laminate would just start tearing as I tried to cut it due to the weight of the MDF. 

I ended up with one bad spot due to the tearing.   :banghead: 



I should be able to hide it with a sharpie.

One side done.   Even with the bad spot this felt really good.   :cheers:





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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #32 on: December 19, 2011, 10:48:54 pm »
For the next side I decided to deviate a little from Epyx's tutorial and cut the laminate to fit before applying the glue.  This made it much easier to move the laminate around and also eliminated any ripping issues.



I used all three of these to cut the laminate.  The band cutters on the left worked the best.  I've had that pair for 25 years and they are not particularly sharp but still worked fine.



I left quite a bit of a lip and was able to route with the flush trip bit just fine.



To trip the circle I just drilled a hole through the laminate and made it a bit wider using my band cutters so the flush trim bit would fit in the hole.



Insert router bit and route.  This part is really, really fun.


For some reason when I was planning I thought I had to pre-trim the laminate to around a 1/2" and then run the flush trim bit over it.  Turns out that is not the case.

Here is a picture of some of the waste pieces.  I thought they looked interesting.  Seems like I should be able to use them for something.









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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #33 on: December 19, 2011, 10:52:03 pm »
A new set of twins with the insides laminated.  They need cleaning but still look good to me.



Next step is to build the base and decide how I want to attach the cleats.  I wanted to have the basic cabinet assembled and in my basement by the time the Christmas Tree comes down.  I don't think I am going to make it but maybe by New Years.



Well Fed Games

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Re: Tron Legacy - Laminating has begun
« Reply #34 on: December 19, 2011, 11:18:04 pm »
Nice, thanks for the laminate process documentation.  :applaud:
Completed projects: Pac bartop (Plug & Play), 30th Anniversary Pac cab (MAME), Point Blank (PS1), Centipede (arcade hardware- light restore), VS. Super Mario Bros (arcade hardware- light restore) Tetris Cocktail (SNES), Arcade Classics upright (60-in-1, then MAME), Multi-Raiden (arcade hardware). Pac Man vs.(Gamecube),

Working on: Pinball Re-theme, Homebrew arcade arena shooter

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #35 on: December 20, 2011, 12:15:14 am »




This totally looks like a badass owl right now.   ;D

I contemplated using laminate on my build and am very appreciative for the process feedback and refinement that you have provided.  Your results are outstanding but you're going to need to grow wings to make your deadline, can't wait to see it come together!

Bender

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Re: Tron Legacy - Laminating has begun
« Reply #36 on: December 20, 2011, 12:46:17 am »
method recommended by Bender looks interesting and it would mean buying another new tool.  ;D

I'll try another sample using a sharp chisel before I decide which way to go.

As a side-note my wife and daughter think I am being way too anal about the T-molding fit.   :dunno


just an update, the last few times I did this I just removed the specialty blade that is inside the trimmer and used that by itself one side at a time (and you can buy just the replacement blades)

wp34

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Re: Tron Legacy
« Reply #37 on: December 20, 2011, 09:12:09 am »
This totally looks like a badass owl right now.   ;D

I contemplated using laminate on my build and am very appreciative for the process feedback and refinement that you have provided.  Your results are outstanding but you're going to need to grow wings to make your deadline, can't wait to see it come together!

Thanks Le Chuck.  I'm really enjoying reading through your build.

just an update, the last few times I did this I just removed the specialty blade that is inside the trimmer and used that by itself one side at a time (and you can buy just the replacement blades)

Thanks for the update Bender.   I take it you are using the blades alone.  Are you using anything to hold the blade as you cut?

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Re: Tron Legacy - Laminating has begun
« Reply #38 on: December 20, 2011, 09:22:22 am »
Good work so far.  What made you choose laminate over painting the sides?

wp34

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Re: Tron Legacy - Laminating has begun
« Reply #39 on: December 20, 2011, 09:36:21 am »
Good work so far.  What made you choose laminate over painting the sides?

Thanks Hoopz.  The main reason is that I always wanted to try it.  My dad made Kicker-style speaker boxes for my car when I was in high school using laminate.  They looked like something bought in a store and I always thought that was cool.  Also my Q*Bert restore has been stuck in the painting/surface-prep stage for a while.  I thought with the laminate I could get it done quicker and so far that is proving to be the case.