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Author Topic: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...  (Read 715 times)

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MicBass

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My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« on: February 06, 2018, 06:09:22 pm »
Hi,

this is my first post on this forum so hello everybody.  :cheers: Grew up in Germany with a lot of Arcade Games in the 80s until they suddenly all disappeared. Got banned into 18+ areas I think, don't really know, but in my memory they were just gone all of a sudden. But the fascination remained. Phoenix...Galaxian...Scramble...Zaxxon...later Rampage and Double Dragon... (at that time the British 5-pence coin matched exactly the German 1 DM coin in seize and weight, but was only worth 15 Pfennig. So during the school exchange to London we went to a bank and brought hundreds of them back home. Some used them for cigarettes, we for Double Dragon. For a while we were rich...)

Years later with a little more money and my own man cave I thought about buying one of these old machines. Would that be cool... But I was shocked about the high prices on ebay and elsewhere and wasn't sure if I could keep these old things running. Don't know much about electronics. But then there was this MAME-thing I had never heard of before, and people building their own cabinets!  :o And a lot of them no professionals writing 'If I can build it everybody can...' That helped because I had never done something that big and complex before and wasn't sure if it was possible. So the idea grew, I read a lot...a LOT...about other projects and started planning. That's when I stumbled over this forum here, must be over 2 yearts ago, and found it a true treasure chest of knowledge. No matter what idea...silly question...problem...someone had written about it and shared it. Many of you have helped me a lot in this, unknowingly, so I wanted to thank you, a big thanks.

I have to admit "Die Spielekiste" (literally "Gaming Box", named by my children) is already working by now, not yet totally finished as artwork and plexiglass are still missing, but you can play on it. My children love it, I think it's the greatest thing in the world and my wife thinks I'm crazy. So it's not really a project announcement but rather a story of the building process, but I wanted to share the experience nevertheless.

The plan was to build a classic upright cabinet made from MDF with a used LCD screen, some used Mini PC with an i5, some old graphics card and a used 2.0 or 2.1 PC speaker system. For the CP I wanted a 2-Player 6 button layout with a trackball for Missile Command. (Learned about all the other great TB-controlled games only later.). For the artwork I had some ideas but nothing definitively decided...still don't have. But I knew I wanted a coin door. A real working one. Wanted to hear the sound of the falling coin again, and - for the ultimate nostalgia - wanted it to work with D-Mark.

For the screen I found a used Dell 2709W. It has 27" and was one of the few monitors still available in 16:10. So it has a relatively big vertical size of 36,3cm (14,3"), which comes close to the old vertical classics which I also wanted to play. A good compromise as I thought, not too big but still ok for the vertical games. Other ideas included a hinged openable CP and a drawer for keyboard and mouse.

So much for the initial thoughts. The plans I did with sketchup...was a bit complicated in the beginning but after some time all the drawing and changing and experimenting became a lot of fun. The measurement of the cabinet was based on Koenigs Project MAME (http://koenigs.dk/mame/eng/stepprojectmame.htm), adapted to the size of the monitor and me.








- MicBass

MicBass

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Re: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2018, 08:51:12 am »
Next step: cutting the woodparts. Used a router for this and was very excited how it would work out.



Started last summer so could do the dusty routing outside as often as possible.



First side cut out.



Copy / paste with a flush trim bit







Yeah...great to see the twins next to each other.  :) Gives a first feeling of the size of the finished cabinet.



In the end all the routing turned out as being far more easy than I feared. Finding the right angles and distances and drawing them on the wood, that was the difficult part.
- MicBass

barrymossel

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Re: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2018, 05:34:25 am »
 :pics :pics :pics

MicBass

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Re: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2018, 01:43:02 pm »
Coming  ;D

The rear wall consists of 2 parts with a hole in it because I wanted accessibility but did not want to build a door. Too complicated...









Family foto with baby. It's really amazing how many parts there are needed!  :o

Cheeeese!  ;D


- MicBass

ChurchOfSolipsism

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Re: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2018, 07:56:29 pm »
This is shaping up to be a really cool machine (I like the curves you incorporated into the sides), keep us up to date!

Grüße aus dem Allgäu!

MicBass

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Re: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2018, 07:21:49 am »
Thank you!  :)

Grüße zurück aus Luxemburg!

---

Next  step was routing the slot for the T-Molding. Tried to measure the distance to find the exact middle...



...but that didn't work out well enough.



In the end I had to adjust the router by hand and try on a spare wood. Luckily I ordered some test strips of T Molding in different colours, so could practice a little...



..before doing the final cut:






After that being done it was the coin door's turn.



Searched for a long time to find a used one because the new ones seemed a little bit expensive with +50,-€. But all the used ones I found were even more expensive  ??? so in the end I bought a new one. It is massive metal, really heavy, and I am very happy with it.









Added holes for 1P & 2P -coin buttons for when you are too lazy or the game demands a dedicated 2P-coin etc...



Hello coin door  :)




Next: building everything together...
- MicBass

Mike A

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Re: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2018, 08:37:56 am »
Do you own a jigsaw and a circular saw?

You will wear out your router bits much more quickly when you use them as a cutting blade like you did for the coin door. Jigsaw blades are much cheaper than router bits.

When you pattern the sides, you should cut as close as you can with a jigsaw and then finish with the pattern bit.

What you did works perfectly fine, it just dulls your more expensive router bits prematurely.

Good luck with your build. I look forward to seeing it completed. :cheers:


bperkins01

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Re: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2018, 08:57:34 am »
Big fan of build threads like this - Keep the pics coming :)   :applaud:
My Arcade Build and other projects here:
https://bperkins.wordpress.com/

MicBass

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Re: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2018, 03:14:06 am »
@ Mike A: Yes you are right and I own both a jigsaw and a circular saw. Used the jigsaw for all the curves. And about the straight cuts...the thing is, they are ok tools but not the best and I do not feel very comfortable with them when it comes to precision. Cutting rough shapes with the circular saw is fine, but cutting to a mm accuracy...think I neither have the tools nor the skills to do that. With the router on the other hand I grew more and more confident and had a lot of fun, so in the end did a lot of the woodcutting with it. So the cabinet got kind of its own exclusive router treatment. ;)

Thanks for the feedback!

---

The bottom plate.





Side with the supporting...how do you call them...woods?



Here I forgot about the size of the monitor. It will not fit as it goes too deep into the cabinet, so I had to cut out somme of the supporting wood after already screwing and glewing it...



(In the end it was still not enough as I saw later...)



Mounting the floor to the sinde



Testing if it all fits together as planned, not fixed yet.





Wanted to have the sides coming 5 mm in front



Starting to screw everything together





What a great moment this was  :)







My son helped so he signed his work. Maybe still has to practice his name a bit. ;)

- MicBass

MicBass

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Re: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2018, 03:03:48 pm »
Next step: holes for the speakers. Found some used Creative A120 2.1 speakers on ebay and got them for less than 7,-€. They are great - good sound, matching size, coming with a sub and the best: a remote volume adjust. That will be put into the drawer so you can easily adjust the different volumes in MAME.



Building the template for the router:







And routing the final holes with the copy bit:





With the speaker panel installed the cabinet is ready to be sanded and filled







- MicBass

Seob

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Re: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« Reply #10 on: February 18, 2018, 03:26:45 pm »
Great looking cabinet. Nice work so far.

MicBass

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Re: My first project: "Die Spielekiste" ... a dream come true ...
« Reply #11 on: Yesterday at 04:38:39 am »
Great looking cabinet. Nice work so far.

Thank you!

---

Next step was filling the screw holes and little gaps. The screws I used for the cabinet were all inox stainless steel. Don't know ift that is really necessary, but I read that they could start to rust under the wet filler and did not want to take any risk.

Cabinet with chickenpox:





The sanding was very dusty, but after its beauty-OP the cabinet got a really smooth skin.







Next comes the CP
- MicBass

  
 

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