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Author Topic: Meet George Jetson!  (Read 8381 times)

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danny_galaga

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Meet George Jetson!
« on: April 14, 2015, 07:15:35 am »
17/7/15: Now complete

Features-

*Googie styling for that Jetsons 'TO THE FUTURE' look

*Glass control panel

*Touch controls for P1, P2, Coin1 and Coin2

*51cm CRT TV converted to an arcade monitor

*Servostiks

*Pacdrive to light up pushbuttons

*Arcade VGA

*Jpac (I've wired this JAMMA in case I want to play with the real thing down the track)



So contrary to what you may have thought from reading my announcement thread, I have actually been building a cab all that time. Last time I made a genuine project announcement, I think I jinxed myself so this time I decided I wouldn't post until I was almost done. Today I picked up the glass, so that was a big milestone.

Because this project 'announcement' is looking back, I have the luxury of making it a fairly tidy thread. Each of the following posts will be one aspect of the build. I'll post a pic of the completed cab in the first post.

First pic is how it all began. And it began by going completely out of my comfort zone about 9 years ago when I decided to move to a new city, without any thoughts of what I would actually do once I got there. One night, as I lay in my bunk bed in a backpackers, with a french-Canadian couple fooling around right above me, I sketched a design. It came out very fluidly and even now I am most impressed I managed such a neat design. So neat that 8 or so years later when I decided to fish that old note book out and look at building it, all I had to do was scan it. The scan turned out to be exactly 1/6 scale. I didn't have to change a thing!

I built a 1/6 scale card model from the scan. When I showed a friend, he said it reminded him of the Jetsons. Hence the name (",) . Sure enough, after googling, it turns out I was being all 'stream of consciousness' and stuff. The Jetsons art style is based on the Googie style of architecture and furniture from the late 40's to the mid 60's. We all know it instinctively as that old fashioned sci fi 'TO THE FUTURE' look. Now I have a name for the style- Googie.

I think some of you may find some of the following features of my cab rather interesting, particularly the 'Glass and controls' and 'auxiliary controls' sections (",)
each unusual feature (as if the shape isn't unusual enough) is all about aesthetic simplicity. It could be said to be feature creep, except that each new thing I though of makes the design cleaner, as opposed to a lot of feature creep situations where things become more cluttered and messy.

17/7/15: Cab is now finished. Here's a vid, pics to follow

« Last Edit: July 18, 2015, 02:48:46 am by danny_galaga »


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danny_galaga

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Re: .
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2015, 07:15:49 am »
First section:

                                                                           
THE CAB

Here are a few pics of the wood-working. I use that term loosely because I am quite shite at it. My wood-working is more like sculpture :duckhunt

The pics will do most of the talking. But I will describe the method of transferring those curves. Basically, on one of my print outs, I plotted x/y points for the beginning and end of a curve. And also where I felt it was best described by two curves. In all there where about ten coordinates. I then drew those points out onto some MDF. I then used some thin dowel to make the curves and then trace the dowel. As you can see from the first pic, I could probably have done with an extra pair of hands  :D

The front panel I decided to make from 3mm MDF. Luckily I chanced upon the tightest bend you could do while searching for alternatives to my plans.. Note this well fellow BYOACers: The tightest radius you can make is 50 times the MDF thickness (",) . So for the 3mm MDF it was 150mm. I made it 170 just to be safe. The concave and convex curves that approach the control panel end were left unfinished. Then I cut a disc of card with a 170mm radius. I was then able to move it around until it fit perfectly with the other curves. There is no doubt some very complicated maths that would do the same thing, but with some dowel and a disc of card, I was able to let mother nature describe some lovely curves.

It makes sense to start a bend from the tightest end first, so I glued down the control panel end first. I did a few dry runs to make sure it would fit between the sides once it was glued down, because if I got that wrong I'd have to start again. In the end I was out by about 1mm, which was all the leeway I had. Phew! So I glued that CP end down, clamped it and weighed it. As you can see, I tried to keep any weight of the panel off the joint while it dried. I then left it for ONE WEEK! How could I wait so long? Well, I went to Middle Earth! After coming back from New Zealand, to make sure that joint was as strong as possible, I counter sunk some small holes into it and screwed in self tappers, slathered in epoxy resin which was then able to be sanded nice and flush. That end is NEVER coming adrift!

While the MDF bent quite easily, I discovered I could pre-form it somewhat by heating it up with a hair dryer. It pretty much sagged all the way into shape just from heating it! I left that overnight with some weights on it just to get the most out of it. then glued it down, using some small pan head screws to temporarily hold it in place. Again, there was no rush, so I left those screws in for weeks while working on it. Took them out and filled in the holes.

« Last Edit: April 15, 2015, 07:37:40 am by danny_galaga »


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danny_galaga

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Re: .
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2015, 07:16:00 am »
                         
SPEAKER BOX

So the design ethos for this project is different to my cocktail cab. There I wanted to relive my youth. It worked admirably, I still play it and I even restrict coin use to those minted before 1990  :D  This project is different though. It's a re-imagining of a lowboy cab. No coin slot for George! Or a marquee for that matter. hence the title of this post.

Pics speak for themselves. Like most of this project, the design occurs as I start working on it. The box is made from MDF, pine and Tassie Oak quad moulding for the radius edges. You can see where the speakers will mount in the second last pic. I have yet to cut out the holes. That panel unscrews. The box itself once in place is screwed and glued in place. Note that the top is slightly curved and I once again employed temporary screws while the glue dried.

Edit: Speaker box finished

« Last Edit: July 09, 2015, 09:43:17 pm by danny_galaga »


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Re: .
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2015, 07:16:12 am »
BEZEL
AKA OPERATION BONDO SCULPTURE

I got the idea that I would reuse the TV case as a bezel. I looked at making my own cardboard one, but reusing bits of the TV appealed. I'm even reusing the power cord. Also, although I hadn't quite worked it out yet, I figured the bezel could be used to take the weight of the glass.

So, as you can see the sides of the front case are perfectly straight and parallel with the face of it. So I chopped off the top and bottom parts, fairly crudely and a little further in than the sides. That way it would sit perfectly on a flat surface. placing it over the tube (now mounted in the cab) then gives me a fairly precise measurement of how much taller it is than the tube. It turned out to be 33mm higher. I can take that measurement anywhere around the tube and it will still be 33mm. Now I know how much higher it is, I can place it upside down on another flat surface. Then measuring down 33mm from one of the sides, I chock a pencil on scraps until it is the desired height and draw all the way around. For my purposes it would be better to take off a little more than a little less. Of course I ended up having to sand and file one side a little to get it right.

As you can see it makes a neat bezel all on its own. Paint it black and put it under smoked glass and it would be fine. but I just cant shake the image of it just being a cut up TV, and like I say I'd also like it to support the glass. Hence the MDF surrounds glued to it. I've yet to finish it off. Lots of bondo sculpting ahead!

Edit: bezel complete

« Last Edit: July 09, 2015, 08:36:24 pm by danny_galaga »


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danny_galaga

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Re: .
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2015, 07:16:22 am »
MONITOR

The seeds for this project started to be sown when I picked up a 51cm tellie from the side of the road. It had really nice colour and worked well for my old consoles except that it had a channel number permanently displayed on the screen. Without a remote it was impossible to get rid of so since I'd been curious about converting a TV to an arcade monitor for a while I decided it was going to form the basis of my lowboy cab. Funny how something free has so far cost me about $1200  :D

The replacement chassis is from a company in Australia called Jomac. basically you email him with what type of tube you have, how many pins on the yoke and what the impedance is for the x and y and he sends you a chassis to suit. Unfortunately for most of you reading this, he is basically a one man operation so will not sell outside of Australia/New Zealand. So don't bother him!

Notice that the neckboard is 'longer' one way to the other. Sadly, because of my habit of just working things out on the fly, if I put the monitor in the conventional way, it would stick out the back too far. Turning the monitor 'upside down' means it fits in nicely. But of course that will mean any adjustments, or even reaching the flyback lead will be a pain. Hopefully won;t have to touch it once it's set up. Progress is stalled right now because I am having trouble getting the ArcadeVGA card to work in my PC. I want to get that working before I hook it up to this monitor, otherwise I'll be trying to work out two problems at once. I have trouble even working out ONE thing at a time...
« Last Edit: April 16, 2015, 03:37:46 am by danny_galaga »


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Re: .
« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2015, 07:16:32 am »
GLASS AND CONTROLS

Why on earth would Danny lump 'controls' and 'glass' into one subject some of you may have wondered? Ok, I bet no one noticed that, but you might notice the pics  ;D

the pictures tell the story. First pic is a shot of the test panel to make sure the dimensions were sound. Then I drew up a plan, using all I could remember of high school tech drawing. Then to make sure that plan was correct, I drew a full size pattern using only the plan. Ha, just noticed in the pic why one joystick hole is 29mm. I forgot to write it in! Thankfully it makes no difference.

Next pic shows how it will look approximately. Clearly I will need to be neat and tidy with the wiring  ;D

Last pic shows the discrepancy in my cab build. The front is about 602mm between the side panels, and the rear is about 607mm. I had the glass made at exactly 600mm just to be sure. Means a bit of a gap on the sides, but I'm pretty sure it will 'disappear' when the bezel is matt black. Hope so, because I don't want to touch the clean look.

Edit: A two dollar dent puller from ebay for lifting the glass (",)

« Last Edit: September 23, 2015, 03:30:49 am by danny_galaga »


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Re: .
« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2015, 07:16:43 am »
AUXILIARY CONTROLS
(P1/2 BUTTONS, COIN INSERT)

So, as mentioned earlier, there will be no coin slots or P1/P2 buttons. I want to keep the look as clean as possible.How on earth is Dan going to flout Mameing conventions and dispense of all that? well, it won't be dispensed with. It just won't be very obvious. You've seen that nice big piece of glass. I am putting in touch controls behind it (",)

Not many pics to show yet. The touch module piggybacks its power from the back of the Jpac. You can see my first test of the concept. My finger is hovering above a touch pad and the test LED is glowing. Last pic is the module mounted next to the Jpac, already spliced into the wiring.

Edit: Now I am happy with the touch switch set up, I can give a link. It's by a company called Adafruit, who do lots of Arduino type accessories. I used this one. Initially I was going to use just the one, but the wiring becomes too long and picks up stray signals. So I've used one for each player and as you can see, mounted them quite close to the touch pads. Keep the input wires the same length so they behave exactly the same. They are cheap as chips so it's not like there is a big cost blow-out  ;D

« Last Edit: July 09, 2015, 09:56:19 pm by danny_galaga »


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danny_galaga

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Re: .
« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2015, 07:16:54 am »
FILL PRIME AND PAINT

Fairly straight forward. Not much to write about. I used water based primer and semi-gloss (satin) enamel. I got them to put a bit of blue tint in the primer- could be the difference between 3 top coats or 4. Three coats of primer, sanded between coats. 3 coats enamel, except the speaker box where I did 4 as I didn't fill imperfections as well as I thought I had. I thinned the enamel a little for each coat and used high density foam rollers, throwing away each one after use. The pic of the colour cards is to get an idea of what some GT stripes might look like, as I won't be putting on vinyl graphics or anything. I want the curves to speak for themselves (",)

One pic of the paint job is with my little camera phone, the other is with a better digital camera, which is a better representation of the actual colour. Notice the test CP in place to make sure the controls make sense. they do.

Last pic, third time's the charm  ;D
« Last Edit: April 15, 2015, 03:56:59 am by danny_galaga »


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danny_galaga

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Re: .
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2015, 07:17:17 am »
this page left intentionally blank :duckhunt
« Last Edit: April 14, 2015, 07:58:25 am by danny_galaga »


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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #9 on: April 14, 2015, 07:53:05 am »
Well, you have built the expectations to a whole new level. It's time to deliver.  :lol

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2015, 08:03:34 am »
THE COMMENT ABOUT HOW IT'S REALLY GREAT BUT COULD HAVE DONE WITHOUT THE MONKEY ROCKER 

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #11 on: April 14, 2015, 08:13:06 am »
THE COMMENT ABOUT HOW IT'S REALLY GREAT BUT COULD HAVE DONE WITHOUT THE MONKEY ROCKER 

It may or may not have more cowbell. You will have to come back when I post some pics to find out (",)


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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #12 on: April 14, 2015, 02:45:59 pm »
Nice curves. :cheers:

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #13 on: April 14, 2015, 02:58:18 pm »
Nice curves. :cheers:

Indeed  :o

But all those screws are on the outside. Are they only temporary, or ...

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #14 on: April 14, 2015, 03:21:27 pm »
This is going to be good.
Love the design of the cabinet, it really hits that Jetson's feeling.  Looking forward to seeing what else you do to this. ;)  :cheers:

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #15 on: April 14, 2015, 03:28:32 pm »
Awesome. I love the original design. 5/5 so far.

danny_galaga

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #16 on: April 15, 2015, 03:15:15 am »
Nice curves. :cheers:

Indeed  :o

But all those screws are on the outside. Are they only temporary, or ...

Quote
While the MDF bent quite easily, I discovered I could pre-form it somewhat by heating it up with a hair dryer. It pretty much sagged all the way into shape just from heating it! I left that overnight with some weights on it just to get the most out of it. then glued it down, using some small pan head screws to temporarily hold it in place. Again, there was no rush, so I left those screws in for weeks while working on it. Took them out and filled in the holes.

(",)


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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #17 on: April 15, 2015, 03:59:02 am »
This design, I like it....a lot.

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #18 on: April 15, 2015, 12:17:11 pm »
I was just thinking a couple days ago how much I dug the Jetson's hyper MCM/Googie style. Just needs an antenna with an orbit ring around it.  :lol

Looks like a fun concept piece. Look forward to seeing this finish out.  :cheers:

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #19 on: April 16, 2015, 03:29:56 am »
Just needs an antenna with an orbit ring around it.  :lol

Ha! Food for thought…

it has been suggested to me I should use the Jetsons doorbell sound somewhere.

http://www.orangefreesounds.com/jetsons-doorbell/

Will work it into Mala somewhere for sure.
« Last Edit: April 16, 2015, 03:57:52 am by danny_galaga »


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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #20 on: April 16, 2015, 08:24:04 am »
I really like the look of this, very interesting  :applaud:
« Last Edit: April 17, 2015, 12:29:00 pm by Buick455 »

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #21 on: April 16, 2015, 09:29:22 pm »
Awesome build!  :applaud:

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #22 on: April 17, 2015, 04:25:29 pm »
Love the touch switch idea.

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #23 on: April 17, 2015, 04:28:33 pm »
Love the touch switch idea.
+1
I wanna hear more about it.


Btw: This is an awesome build! (I'll go sit in the corner with my lousy bartop buillds)

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #24 on: April 19, 2015, 06:04:29 am »
Wow love the design / shape  :applaud:
- and the way you handled sorting the TV screen bezel - simple, yet an approach that had completely eluded me  :notworthy:, thanks heaps - now know how I can make use of the 24" TV sitting in the garage
Currently building http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,137777.0.html Mass-Replicate
Built "n0tsq3" cocktail cab http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,133913.0/all.html
..and restoring a Sega MegaLo 410 Candy Cab & Moon Patrol Cab

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #25 on: April 20, 2015, 05:54:02 am »
Wow love the design / shape  :applaud:
- and the way you handled sorting the TV screen bezel - simple, yet an approach that had completely eluded me  :notworthy:, thanks heaps - now know how I can make use of the 24" TV sitting in the garage

Thanks! I haven't finished the bezel yet as I'm still distracted by this stupid Arcade VGA thing. I don't think it is going to work with the computer I have. And there is no guarantee that getting another PC would be any better. I think this gadget is more for the guys who build PC's. They can mix and match until they find something that works. I have a friend who lives nearby who has done that soft 15 something something mod on at least a half dozen arcade machines. He has offered to set that up for me. Thank god, because that stuff does my head in! Wanna buy a used (probably) working Arcade Vga  :lol


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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #26 on: April 20, 2015, 10:57:28 am »
I really like the shape and design of this. Combined with the colour, this thing screams Jetsons. I can't wait to see the project once it is finished. Excellent job. Oh, and I would like to +1 Vigos idea for an orbit ring antenna thingy. :D

Again, great job so far.  :applaud:

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #27 on: April 21, 2015, 07:43:00 pm »
Very cool and original! reminded me of the uniqueness of a computer space type cab. Looking forward to the rest of this build.  :applaud:

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #28 on: May 19, 2015, 07:32:03 am »

Finally some progress with the Arcade VGA! Now I feel like I can get rolling again. With the monitor powered up I can see where it's safe to put the touch switches (",)


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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #29 on: May 19, 2015, 11:37:06 am »
Awesome!  Glad you got that figured out. 

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #30 on: May 21, 2015, 12:34:56 am »
I LIKE WHERE THIS IS GOING!

Very unique design. Great work so far

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #31 on: May 26, 2015, 05:37:16 am »
I LIKE WHERE THIS IS GOING!

Very unique design. Great work so far

Thanks!

Latest is I have started work on the touch switches. Turns out the way I set it up, the wires are too long and cause interference with the whole set up. So I will be moving the touch module up into the control panel to keep the sensor wires as short as possible. Hopefully I can keep them short enough so that I can still proceed with having P1 and Coin 1 on the left side of the monitor, and P2 and Coin 2 on the right. If I still don't get consistency then plan B is to have them all on the right side, thereby keeping the sensor wires short. Or pick up another touch module so there is one on each side. Actually I just thought of that as I typed, so definitely will go for a second module if all else fails (",)

Oh, also touched up some scratches I made by being clumsy. Managed to stipple the paint into the scratches and will probably get away with that. Little things like that were bumming me out. But now I've finally gotten the graphics side of things to look fine I'm feeling a lot better about this. Should have been finished months ago. I thought I was weeks away when I first posted this!
« Last Edit: May 26, 2015, 05:47:21 am by danny_galaga »


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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #32 on: May 26, 2015, 08:23:58 am »
Nice.
I've thought about how nice it would be to use touch switches somewhere on an arcade can but never did it.
My son and I made a capacitive touch module for his science fair. Lots of fun.
Will you be able to adjust the sensitivity?

two40

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #33 on: May 26, 2015, 07:39:41 pm »
I want to do a belly bump with this thing!

 :applaud:

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #34 on: May 27, 2015, 07:16:09 am »
Nice.
I've thought about how nice it would be to use touch switches somewhere on an arcade can but never did it.
My son and I made a capacitive touch module for his science fair. Lots of fun.
Will you be able to adjust the sensitivity?

Yeah, spent a few hours this evening messing around with it. Seems to be less finicky if I put the pads along the top. Maybe the magnetic field of the monitor is stronger along the sides? Anyway, got it working ok there, but when you put the glass over it, that affects it as well. Makes it more sensitive. The main ways I am adjusting sensitivity is by shortening the wires, and the touch pad area. After all those hours though, I still haven't got a handle on what works best. I'm sure it will come to me though (",)



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ay7RWB7wm78
« Last Edit: May 27, 2015, 07:19:28 am by danny_galaga »


ROUGHING UP THE SUSPECT SINCE 1981

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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #35 on: May 30, 2015, 06:46:33 am »
Finally worked it out. Just as I was beginning to despair. I have no plan B for those switches! So what was happening was that the touch module would go haywire when I put the glass over it. Even though I instinctively knew it would be because the glass was picking up a charge from the monitor I tried to work around that because I didn't know what to do.

 I tried putting a diode on the power of the module to drop the voltage. It works from 1.8 to 5.5 V so I was thinking maybe its sensitivity could be adjusted a little with a lower voltage. That didn't work. That was after playing around for hours with position, touch pad area, length of wire, removing the touch pads altogether and just have wire and using a 30k resistor in the hope it might reduce some of the 'noise'. All to no avail.

 Then I had a 'Eureka!' moment and put a short piece of adhesive copper foil on the back edge of the glass, to which I soldered a length of wire. It worked! In initially I attached it to the tube chassis earth but then I realised that is probably the same polarity as the glass. It works fine not connected to anything. I'm assuming the wire helps to radiate any voltage that builds up in the glass. What may work just as well is to completely cover the back edge of the glass with the copper tape, hopefully negating the need to attach a wire to it.

I've left it running with a contact pad taped underneath the glass and with notepad open so that in an hour or so I can see if it's inputted any stray 'presses' but I'm feeling good about it (",)



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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #36 on: June 09, 2015, 04:30:06 am »
Milestone (",)



Definitive position of touch controls on my cab. This has come about purely through there being nowhere else I could put the controls without the static of the CRT setting them off! But sometimes things work out better than planned. The touch pads are copper foil attached to the underside of some black card, which is held in place by the switches. Right now the card somewhat resembles a plastic 6 pack ring- you know, the type that ends up in the sea and strangles turtles. When I finally install everything, the card will be just two diamonds, which should help it disappear against all the rest of the blackness once everything is painted. Yes I will need to explain where the switches are the first time, but who is going to forget where they are after that? Besides, I find and others will agree that you have to explain how your mame cab works to newbies in any case.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2015, 07:36:19 am by danny_galaga »


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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #37 on: June 30, 2015, 09:00:51 am »

Well, I am on two weeks leave, so if I don't finish this in that time I really need my arse kicked  ;D

Here's some pics of little things I've done. INcluding fitting the speakers (I am running most of the wiring in the t-moulding slots), a cheeky bit of drilling in the apartment (oo err!) to fit some furniture glides as feet and testing an LED in the back of a button


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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #38 on: June 30, 2015, 09:03:48 am »

Here are some details on the CP. As you can see, the touch switch area is greatly reduced from the '6 pack rings' shape and is now a 'batwing'. The glass was measured in millimetres, but the button diameter is in inches and because of the way they have to cut the glass (distance between edge of the button hole must be a minimum of half the diameter) the holes are a lot bigger than need be. So I made some spacers from thin card, taped and glued around the button. When the glue has dried, if I put them in the holes, the spacers stay behind in the glass. Unintended but works either way.

 Also a couple of shots of the joystick mounts. It's this way because it's not practical to have screw holes in the glass. And the last shot is of what it roughly looks like once in place. I'm not sure I will go for the whole seeing all the wires thing since they don't look all that neat. If I don;t like it, I can cover the whole lot up with thin black card...
« Last Edit: June 30, 2015, 09:11:41 am by danny_galaga »


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Re: Meet George Jetson!
« Reply #39 on: June 30, 2015, 09:44:50 am »
That's really impressive Danny.  I'm anxious to see that CP with the controls installed.


Here are some details on the CP. As you can see, the touch switch area is greatly reduced from the '6 pack rings' shape and is now a 'batwing'. The glass was measured in millimetres, but the button diameter is in inches and because of the way they have to cut the glass (distance between edge of the button hole must be a minimum of half the diameter) the holes are a lot bigger than need be. So I made some spacers from thin card, taped and glued around the button. When the glue has dried, if I put them in the holes, the spacers stay behind in the glass. Unintended but works either way.

 Also a couple of shots of the joystick mounts. It's this way because it's not practical to have screw holes in the glass. And the last shot is of what it roughly looks like once in place. I'm not sure I will go for the whole seeing all the wires thing since they don't look all that neat. If I don;t like it, I can cover the whole lot up with thin black card...

  
 

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