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Author Topic: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab  (Read 6007 times)

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acvieluf

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Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab
« on: October 17, 2015, 09:16:13 pm »
Hey all, as most of these posts start, i've been reading here for a long time reading and soaking up info, and now i've taken the leap. 

I began working on an old computer, setting up mame, a viable front end, and sorting through ALL THOSE ROMS.  After all that was settled and i realized i could do it, i told my wife what my plan was. XD   While i was planning on building my own cab (with only amateur woodworking skills), I spotted an gutted Zaxxon cab for sale in the Halifax area, and scooped it up for $40.  Got it home with the help of my brother in law, and the work was on!

The plan is 2 players plus a track-ball.  I have two different plans for the CP, the expensive way (that i much prefer), using all Ultimarc controls, including the mag stick pros, to have 4-8 way switchable.  The cheap way is the x-arcade build it yourself.  The more i think about it, i think i'll just end up picking up what i need a little at a time.

Here's a pic of the cab when i brought it home (and removed the broken and burnt-in screen)

« Last Edit: May 30, 2017, 11:34:16 am by acvieluf »

acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2015, 09:23:47 pm »
The first step was stripping out the old wiring and LOTS of internal cleaning (that thing was GROSS!).  I'm ok with mechanical things, so the least intimidating starting point was the coin mechs.  The back side of them were pretty good, so instead of breaking down and repainting what no one would see, i just broke it down half-way, cleaned it all up with a wire brush, and put it back together.

I stripped the front plates down to bare metal, cleaned up everything, and repainted them.  I decided to leave the coin return doors bare metal, just cause i thought they looked nice that way. 


acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2015, 09:28:42 pm »
After tons of patching and sanding of rough wood, broken wood, etc.  I couldn't plan any further until i had made sure the TV was going to fit. Before i bought the cab, i had a 27 and a 24 inch TV.  The 24 fits so perfect, that i don't have to cut the back, or angle the TV any more.  I have to take it back out to finish patching, sanding and painting (those details later), but the mock-up sure gets me pumped again!

tomstewdevine

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2015, 09:47:45 am »
Looks like the start of a fun project.
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acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2015, 06:40:13 am »
I've tackled the coin door!  I wanted to use the coin mechs still, rather then have a button for coins. (I would just keep an amount of quarters in the machine, so that my guests are playing for free, but it doesn't FEEL like it.) That being said, it means that i would need regular access to the coin bins.  So i made a door out of some lightweight wood (pine). And made a door that could be opened and shut easily.  I was actually quite proud of myself for this idea and execution, cause i usually suck at this sort of thing. 

There are magnets in the door's panel, and metal brackets for them to grab when it's shut.  It's a perfect amount of grip, too.


acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab
« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2015, 06:42:39 am »
I also finished my ULTRA MEGA CHEAP monitor bezel.  It's almost perfectly cut, with the only gaps to be fixed via electrical tape.  I can get away with this due to the smoked plexiglass that goes in front of the monitor.  I don't have a picture with the plexi on, because it's so dirty right now, i just won't bother until later.


acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab
« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2015, 06:46:21 am »
I almost forgot that here's my color inspiration.  The originals all had black vinyl art on a brown cab, ugh.  So I will be using the original art, on a black cab, with blue t-molding.  The CP will have elements of blue, red, and white, just as the original Zaxxon art had.  I'm thinking it will all tie together really well.


wp34

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #7 on: December 11, 2015, 10:43:13 am »
I like the color scheme you have chosen. Keeping the original art and color scheme is good--sans the brown.

You might find that two players plus a track ball is a little tight on that cabinet.  Have you done a mock-up or anything yet?

acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #8 on: December 11, 2015, 11:28:43 am »
I actually started a mockup last night on cardboard, using those print-outs. I was beginning to think the same thing. Not sure yet though.

My first thought was, maybe I don't need six buttons per player, maybe just 4 will suffice. As far as I can tell, the only games that would keep me out of is fighting games. That's not the end of the world, but it'd be nice to have some of those. So we'll see, I suppose. I'll post a pic of the mockup when I finish it up tonight.

Thanks for the input!

acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #9 on: December 11, 2015, 03:16:56 pm »
Heres the main layout (no player/admin buttons, but there's plenty of room up top).

It LOOKS to me like it may work, but i'd really like some feedback, if you're reading this.  not enough room on the sides?  Not enough room underneath?  The joysticks and buttons are centered on the mark of 2 inches from the edge.

Let me know what you think.  And at my daughters request, she really wants to pick an emoji, so she chooses...  :angry:   haha


JDFan

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #10 on: December 11, 2015, 03:51:53 pm »
HAve you measured the bases of the player 2 joystick and the trackball (from the pic it looks like it will be a tight fit in that space for a joystick base and the trackball base and you can't overlap them !) - The trackball bases are pretty big so you need to be sure you have enough space there before cutting.

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (feedback request)
« Reply #11 on: December 11, 2015, 03:55:19 pm »
LOL - daughters are all the same.   :cheers:

JDFan is right.  The trackballs are wider (and deeper) than you might expect.  I had some issues with my first CP not taking that into account.

acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (feedback request)
« Reply #12 on: December 11, 2015, 08:27:46 pm »
I'll check that out. Thanks guys.

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #13 on: December 11, 2015, 09:50:00 pm »
Also note the alternative positions of the Joysticks on those slagcoin layouts, you can cheat them closer to save space.

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #14 on: December 12, 2015, 07:51:21 pm »

Nice work so far!


ROUGHING UP THE SUSPECT SINCE 1981

kjeffery

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #15 on: December 14, 2015, 01:02:38 pm »
im restoring one myself, i am also wrapping it in black vinyl. I just redid the control panel on mine
Of all the things I lost, I miss my mind the most!!

acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #16 on: December 29, 2015, 07:57:32 pm »
im restoring one myself, i am also wrapping it in black vinyl. I just redid the control panel on mine

Nice!  I have to admit though: Since i bought this cab, i have tried and tried to like the actual game Zaxxon.  Try as I might, i cannot.  I still have it in my group of MAME games, and will play it from time to time.  But I don't think i'll ever come around to enjoying that one.  (I never played it as a kid, either, so I don't have any help from nostalgia, haha)

acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #17 on: December 29, 2015, 08:07:03 pm »
So, here's where i open myself up to some ridicule i think. But in light of the OP here: http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,148539.0.html , I will show my ineptitude for the sake of others.  I'm very new and inexperienced, so be gentle.  :lol

I have never worked with Bondo before, so I was quite intimidated to learn how on this first try.  The bottom rear corners of the cabinet were REALLY rough.  I trimmed them to match the shape of the panels behind them, which helped some.  But there were giant chunks missing on each corner.  I chickened out on the Bondo, and went with dry wall mud.  I did layer by layer, so it didn't bubble and crack. It didn't turn out TOO bad, but it wasn't greatness, either.   The photos follow:


acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #18 on: December 29, 2015, 08:11:07 pm »
For some of the smaller gashes, i filled in using JB Weld epoxy putty.  I would've preferred to use this on the bottom corners, but that damage was too big.  A pic of the rear side:


acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #19 on: January 21, 2016, 09:10:06 pm »
A new update!  First of all, it's painted!  There are a few spots that i plan on sanding and repainting a bit, but overall i like it.  Here's a pic of the cab as it sits now, so you can see it painted.  That makes such a HUGE difference.  I don't hear my wife complaining about it being as ugly, anymore either.  :lol

EDIT - forgot to mention that after painting, i realized that the kitchen cabinet handle on the coin door HAS to go!  It seemed like a good idea at the time.  Not so much anymore.  I will be finding a better solution for this in the future...
« Last Edit: January 21, 2016, 09:19:16 pm by acvieluf »

acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #20 on: January 21, 2016, 09:12:20 pm »
Already had the light for this, but had to drill some holes in the casing to make it line up with the holes already in the cab for the original light.  Unfortunately, there was a transformer in the way, so i couldn't mount it perfectly centered.  I could use your opinion: Will this look dumb once a marquee is in place?


acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #21 on: January 21, 2016, 09:16:39 pm »
I also picked up a pair of 6x9 speaker covers for a REASONABLE price, locally.  I chuckle here, because of how it went down.  I get them home, cut a hole in the grill to accommodate the speaker controls, Line it with black fabric to block out any marquee light, and eventually mount it in.  After about 5 minutes of looking at it, i just don't like it.  It curves down too far, IMO.  For now it will do, but i need to find a better solution later.

Here's a pic, but in the picture from the post above (of the whole cabinet), you can REALLY see it protruding from above the monitor.  It doesn't get in the way of the monitor, but it's exactly at my eye level while standing.  We'll see how it feels once stools are introduced.




acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #22 on: January 21, 2016, 09:17:45 pm »
Coin mechs reinstalled and looking quite dapper if i do say so myself.




acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #23 on: January 21, 2016, 09:28:13 pm »
Here's the CP i've begun using 3/4" furniture-grade plywood.  First of all, i have to say this is a HUGE learning experience for me.  I am learning how to use my tools, for one.  Even though i've had this circular saw for some time now, i haven't ever used the angling feature, and it took me a few tries to get it (close to) right. 

You can see that the lower piece's angle is a little too steep, and has left a gap.  I have since fastened the two from the back side, and am in the process of filling the gap using wood putty.  We'll see how this turns out.  I don't want to do things shoddy, but would like to be able to patch things if possible.  Again, learning experience for sure. 

Also, i was  :angry: when i made my final cut of the whole thing!  I hadn't had any chipping on either side of my cuts the whole time, so i threw caution to the wind and cut the bottom piece from the opposite side i should have, and lo and behold!  Chips ALL DOWN THE FRONT.  At least the putty works here, too. 

(Also, i do plan on having a friend route a curve on the edge of the top panel, before usage)


tomstewdevine

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #24 on: January 22, 2016, 03:45:17 pm »
Nice updates, she is coming along, since you don't like the game do you just plan on selling it right away?
Finished: 2 bartops and a cocktail
Not-Finished: 1bartop, 2cocktails, and 2 stand ups.

acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #25 on: January 22, 2016, 07:29:23 pm »
Oh no way. I was going build my own cab for mame, but saw this one listed for $40 locally. If you see the first post in the thread, I bought it gutted. No remnants of Zaxxon left. I was just going to make it look like Zaxxon because not only is that what it originally was, but the art and colors were GREAT.

Sent from my Atari 2600


acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (cabinet rehab stage)
« Reply #26 on: January 23, 2016, 01:01:33 pm »
Here's the CP with the gap filled and smoothed out.  It is waiting a friend to use his router to put a smooth curve on the edge.

I forgot to mention it earlier, but this wood CP is temporary.  This project is only held up by funds, so i am putting this together with wood i had, so that i can make this cab functional.  It will most likely be another year or so until it's complete, due to budget, so i'm just getting it going for the time being. 


Also, just ordered all my controls (minus a trackball) from the playdium arcade, here in Canada.  Of all my searching for frugality, they ended up being the cheapest (while still being quality) on the merit of shipping alone. 

Controls and T-molding both on their way!
« Last Edit: January 23, 2016, 01:13:56 pm by acvieluf »

acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP construction)
« Reply #27 on: January 24, 2016, 05:18:35 pm »
im restoring one myself, i am also wrapping it in black vinyl. I just redid the control panel on mine
Here I have been, scouring the Internet for the dimensions of a Zaxxon CP, completely forgetting that there is someone in my own thread that has one! Face palm.

I have a guys that's going to make me one, but I need the dimensions. Would you be able to check that? I would need the width, and length to each bend.

Is that possible? Let me know. Thanks!

Sent from my Atari 2600


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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP construction)
« Reply #28 on: January 26, 2016, 10:46:03 pm »
T-molding is on! I know this picture isn't formatted as well as the others, but I'm too excited, so its on my phone.

Controls have arrived, and I have to give a shout out to the playdium store. I ordered on Friday afternoon, selected the cheapest shipping, and it was on my doorstep Tuesday!

Sent from my Atari 2600

« Last Edit: January 26, 2016, 10:51:20 pm by acvieluf »

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP construction)
« Reply #29 on: January 28, 2016, 08:08:43 pm »
This is coming along nicely.

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP construction)
« Reply #30 on: January 28, 2016, 08:11:40 pm »
Looking  good Nova Scotia!

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP construction)
« Reply #31 on: January 29, 2016, 10:06:16 pm »
THANKS! It means a lot. There's some rough edges, and I'll document those as well.

But a quick update, kitchen hardware gone. Replaced with something more discreet.





Sent from my Atari 2600


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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP construction)
« Reply #32 on: February 03, 2016, 05:17:40 pm »
Here's some more progress: CP drilled and wired. I will still have to disassemble the parts to put a basic black vinyl overlay.  It's not perfect, but it was good practice, and a good dry run before the eventual metal CP.

When it goes back together, I'll clean up some of the wiring, as well.





Sent from my Atari 2600


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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP construction)
« Reply #33 on: February 03, 2016, 05:19:22 pm »
And here it is mounted for a dry run. Even played a game of DK3. I need to disassemble this NOW, otherwise, it may never get done! Haha





Sent from my Atari 2600

« Last Edit: February 03, 2016, 05:25:05 pm by acvieluf »

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP mounted! No artwork)
« Reply #34 on: February 04, 2016, 09:32:12 am »
HEY!  I actually have the metal control panel from a Zaxxon cab I'm redoing!  Are you interested in it?!  I need to know today, though!

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP mounted! No artwork)
« Reply #35 on: February 04, 2016, 09:40:05 am »
Well yes! But I'm on a shoestring, so...how much?

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP mounted! No artwork)
« Reply #36 on: February 04, 2016, 10:15:13 am »
It had been converted to another game, mind you.   How about you just pay for packaging and shipping costs (not service, just my cost)? 

THAT SAID, I also just bought some bondo.  If you would like me to fill the button and joystick holes you won't use, and then paint it, I would do that for a little money for my time so I can have a little hobby money.  I won't price gouge you!  If you want me to wrap it with some brushed aluminum vinyl, we can work that out, too, which you can put your Zaxxon graphic over (or just over the paint.. thought I'd at least offer!).

Thoughts?!


acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP mounted! No artwork)
« Reply #37 on: February 04, 2016, 10:25:32 am »
So, in an odd turn, THIS MORNING I found the CP dimensions on eBay. For real. A guy was selling one, and has a picture of him measuring almost every angle.

And just an hour or so ago, my friend who's helping me popped into my office with a piece of stainless steel he picked up just for this!

So for now, I have to pass, but thank you for considering me.

:cheers:

Sent from my Atari 2600

acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab (CP mounted! No artwork)
« Reply #38 on: February 04, 2016, 10:27:28 am »
Here's the measurement pics I found, along with some others of the under and top side.







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acvieluf

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Re: Mame rehab - old Zaxxon Cab
« Reply #39 on: June 15, 2016, 09:40:18 am »
Finally!

    I had ordered a metal aluminum panel from a recommended local welding shop.  I did this because i was told that the stainless steel panel i had would be EXTREMELY difficult to drill through without buying a bunch of extra drill bits.  So...I ordered the panel two months ago.  I had to call the shop once a week, to check on it (because each time he told me it would be next week.)  I kept patient, knowing that this was a small job for such an enormous shop, and I wasn't in a hurry. But get this: I gave a cardboard template, and everything about the template was right, except the width, which i not only explained to the boss, but wrote clearly on the panel. 
     I get the call to pick it up, one month and a week after order placed.  When i get there, the guy is smiling, "Doesn't that look nice?"  "Yes, but it's not the right size."  You can see where this is going..."But it matches the cardboard piece!"  Upon further inspection, he ends with, "I guess i took so long i forgot."   :angry:

     Now here we are, almost a month later, and I have the panel.  I have to go in later today to pay, and i will be asking for a discount, for all the rigamarole (sp?)...

     But here she is!  Now i can hand it off to my bro-in-law to start the graphic work.  So basically, i get it, give it away, and probably wait another month.  Oh well.  I'd rather have it done well.  It's nice to have some progress, though. : )


  
 

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