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Author Topic: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper  (Read 9846 times)

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slybunda

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Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« on: October 01, 2021, 08:06:39 pm »
Hi all. i was given a cabinet which has a pc inside it running windows and various emulators like mame. the wiring inside is really bad, the joysticks and buttons are connected to what looks like a hacked up keyboard controller board and thats giving me the biggest issues when 2 players play some button presses and movements dont get picked up and there is ghosting and lag on the controls.

the spec originally was:
pentium 4 531 3ghz
1.5gb ram
ati firegl v3100
160gb ide drive
atx power supply probably under 300w
19inch ilyama monitor.

so far iv switched it to 4gb ram and iv got a pentium D 925 cpu on order for a quick swap and bit of an upgrade. ideally id like to gut it all and use something modern but will go along with this for now to see how things go. iv replaced the graphics card with a geforce 310 since thats what i had lying around and it works better since mame had issues with the firegl not supporting pixel shader 3.0.
iv swapped the ide drive and put in a spare 60gb ssd i had.
i was looking to replace the controller board since its very limiting. once 5 or 6 buttons are pressed it just doesnt work right.
options iv seen are to use a zero delay or ipac2 or even a arduino micro.
i like the sound of using arduino but again not sure if its gonna allow more simultaneous button presses to be registered and how it works in regards to response and lag.
 hopefully i get some ideas on how to proceed with it. my kiddo will just play basic scrolling beat em ups like final fight, double dragon, ninja turtles etc.
its not allowing me to upload pics yet.

PL1

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2021, 10:14:57 pm »
i was looking to replace the controller board since its very limiting. once 5 or 6 buttons are pressed it just doesnt work right.
options iv seen are to use a zero delay or ipac2 or even a arduino micro.
i like the sound of using arduino but again not sure if its gonna allow more simultaneous button presses to be registered and how it works in regards to response and lag.
A keyboard hack has the "boot protocol" 6-button limitation.

Loosely related thread with good info and advice:  http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,156161.0.html

its not allowing me to upload pics yet.
I'm trying to upload cabinet pics. The file size is OK, however I get the message that the file fails security checks
Unfortunately, the forum software sometimes throws false positives during the security checks.   :banghead:

The best known workaround is to either crop or resize the image by about 3-5% and try uploading it again.


Scott

slybunda

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2021, 05:56:29 am »
here are a few pics:



















javeryh

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2021, 09:56:41 am »
The iPAC2 is a wonderful product that will solve your input problems.

If I were you I'd recut that control panel.  The button spacing is not great and it doesn't look like P1 or P2 has anywhere for their hands to rest (P1 looks like he would be hitting the side panel and P2 looks like he would be leaning on P1's buttons) but that may just be because the overall dimensions are narrow for 2 players... 

You'd have plenty of room for a 1P setup with a spinner or maybe a 2.5" trackball and then just plug in a gamepad when you want to play with 2 people.  Just a thought.

slybunda

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2021, 11:25:48 am »
Thanks for the input. Agreed the controls are tight for adults but with me and my 7 year old i didnt run into spacing issues although we only tested simpsons arcade which is just 2 button.

Would an arduino micro work as a controller board which is a lot cheaper than the ipac2. But i dont want to run into the issue that buttons are not able to be pressed simultaneously.

PL1

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2021, 12:53:29 pm »
Would an arduino micro work as a controller board which is a lot cheaper than the ipac2. But i dont want to run into the issue that buttons are not able to be pressed simultaneously.
It's not a problem as long as you use a firmware or sketch that doesn't have the "boot protocol" limitation.

The KADE miniArcade 2.0 firmware will work on any 32u4 AVR board like the Arduino Micro or Pro Micro.

Looks like you have 26 button and joystick inputs.

With an Arduino Micro, the 22 on the control panel can be un-shifted inputs and the 4 on the front panel can be shifted inputs.
- Use blocking diodes for the shifted inputs.





The other option is to use two inexpensive Arduino Pro Micros.
- Use one for P1 and the other for P2.
- You'll have more than enough un-shifted inputs so no blocking diodes needed.   ;D
- You may want to use keyboard outputs on at least one of the two boards.  If you use gamepad outputs on both, you might run into the Windows device renumbering problem. (P1 shows up as P2 and P2 shows up as P1 after rebooting  :banghead: )
- You may also want to change the MAME default keys that are "modifiers". (CTRL, ALT, SHIFT, etc.)
http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,156161.0.html




Scott

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2021, 04:06:52 pm »
Thanks for that info its fantastic. Iv got an Arduino leonardo on order to play with, i was hoping to set it up as a gamepad mode.

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2021, 04:59:07 pm »
If you are going the Kade (good idea) you can lose all that PC junk and just put a Raspberry Pi 3b/4 in there.

Less heat, lower carbon footprint and better experience.

That rats nest of control panel cables needs cable ties and some patience too.

PL1

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2021, 05:24:59 pm »
Iv got an Arduino leonardo on order to play with, i was hoping to set it up as a gamepad mode.
1. The Leonardo has one less input available than the Micro.



2.  The miniArcade 2.0 firmware only supports one gamepad per board -- you'll need a second AVR board so P1 and P2 have separate gamepads.
- You can use two Leonardos or a Leonardo for one player and a Pro Micro for the other.
-- The second approach might make it a bit easier to tell the difference while troubleshooting if the device renumbering problem comes up.
- To make one Leonardo into two gamepads for your setup, you'd need to find a firmware that puts both both gamepads on one board and supports shifted functions for at least 5 inputs.   :dunno


Scott
« Last Edit: October 02, 2021, 05:34:04 pm by PL1 »

slybunda

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2021, 07:57:46 pm »
i found this guide here:
https://www.instructables.com/Arduino-LeonardoMicro-as-Game-ControllerJoystick/

that guide says i can hook it up to use as 2 joysticks. the leonardo was half the price of the micro pro for some odd reason. so even if i have to get 2 of them its gonna be mega cheapo. leonardo cost 6 inc delivery which is around $7.
just got to sit it out while it comes from china  :laugh2:
id rather no go with a raspberry pi but will first focus on the controls and then take things from there.
this github here:
https://github.com/MHeironimus/ArduinoJoystickLibrary/tree/version-1.0
https://github.com/MHeironimus/ArduinoJoystickLibrary/tree/version-2.0

it says:
This library comes in three flavors:

Joystick - adds a single joystick that contains an X, Y, and Z axis (including rotation), 32 buttons, 2 hat switches, a throttle, and a rudder.
Joystick2 - adds two simple joysticks that contain an X and Y axis and 16 buttons.
Joystick3 - adds three simple joysticks that contain an X and Y axis and 16 buttons.


how can you get 32 buttons to work? there only half the pin outs on the ardunios.  :dizzy:
« Last Edit: October 02, 2021, 08:06:55 pm by slybunda »

PL1

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2021, 11:22:08 pm »
how can you get 32 buttons to work? there only half the pin outs on the ardunios.  :dizzy:
https://github.com/MHeironimus/ArduinoJoystickLibrary/wiki/FAQ
Quote
How can I connect 32 (or some other large number) of buttons to an Arduino Leonardo or Arduino Micro that only has 13 digital pins and 6 analog/digital pins?

There are various ways this can be done.

    The Arduino website has a good example of how this can be done using a one or more SN74HC165N shift registers (see https://playground.arduino.cc/Code/ShiftRegSN74HC165N).
    Another possibility is using an encoder, like the 74LS348.
    A key matrices can also be used. A good article on key matrices can be found at http://pcbheaven.com/wikipages/How_Key_Matrices_Works/.
So the three proposed solutions are:

1. Use a SN74HC165N shift register circuit that turns 8 parallel inputs (8 buttons), a clock signal from the Arduino, and an enable signal from the Arduino into one serial output to the Arduino.
- It might work OK, but no idea if this circuit and code combination will cause problems with lag.   :dunno

2. Use a 74LS348 chip to convert 8 individual button inputs into a 3 digit binary value.
- If you look at the logic table on page 1 of the datasheet here, you can see that you can only press one button at a time. (one L on inputs 0-7)   :puke

3. Use a matrix encoder which gives you the same ghosting and/or blocking problems as your current keyboard hack that is also a matrix encoder.   :puke

Meatloaf obviously wasn't singing about this one 'cause two out of three ARE bad for your application.   :lol

Good luck if you want to try to use that joystick library, code, and circuit for a single board approach, but I'm convinced that you'd be far better off with a well-documented and known-good two board approach using the KADE miniArcade 2.0 firmware.


Scott

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2021, 11:39:02 pm »
Would an arduino micro work as a controller board which is a lot cheaper than the ipac2. But i dont want to run into the issue that buttons are not able to be pressed simultaneously.
It's not a problem as long as you use a firmware or sketch that doesn't have the "boot protocol" limitation.

The KADE miniArcade 2.0 firmware will work on any 32u4 AVR board like the Arduino Micro or Pro Micro.

Looks like you have 26 button and joystick inputs.

With an Arduino Micro, the 22 on the control panel can be un-shifted inputs and the 4 on the front panel can be shifted inputs.
- Use blocking diodes for the shifted inputs.





The other option is to use two inexpensive Arduino Pro Micros.
- Use one for P1 and the other for P2.
- You'll have more than enough un-shifted inputs so no blocking diodes needed.   ;D
- You may want to use keyboard outputs on at least one of the two boards.  If you use gamepad outputs on both, you might run into the Windows device renumbering problem. (P1 shows up as P2 and P2 shows up as P1 after rebooting  :banghead: )
- You may also want to change the MAME default keys that are "modifiers". (CTRL, ALT, SHIFT, etc.)
http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,156161.0.html




Scott

Picked up the Arduino Micro off Amazon for $20,  This one has headers already soldered on since I cannot solder to save my life as I zapped the last one.

With 26 button and one joy why can you not use four buttons for another joystick.  Shurely you don't need 10 buttons for each player?

PL1

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #12 on: October 03, 2021, 01:07:14 am »
Looks like you have 26 button and joystick inputs.
With 26 button and one joy why can you not use four buttons for another joystick.  Shurely you don't need 10 buttons for each player?
:dizzy:   You might want to try counting again.   :lol

His bartop needs a total of 26 inputs for the buttons and joysticks visible in this pic.
- 8 joystick inputs. (4 per stick x 2 sticks)
- 12 player button inputs. (6 per player x 2 players)
- 6 admin buttons (P1 Start + P2 Start + 4 others on the front panel)




Scott

slybunda

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #13 on: October 03, 2021, 03:21:29 am »
Thanks for the replys. I take it the kade firmware will allow all buttons to be pressed simultaneously without issues?
Even if i have to get a 2nd Arduino leonardo then 2 x Arduino setup is still going to be one third of the price of the ipac2 ( 2xarduino = 11 and ipac2= 34)

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2021, 11:22:07 am »
Looks like you have 26 button and joystick inputs.
With 26 button and one joy why can you not use four buttons for another joystick.  Shurely you don't need 10 buttons for each player?
:dizzy:   You might want to try counting again.   :lol

His bartop needs a total of 26 inputs for the buttons and joysticks visible in this pic.
- 8 joystick inputs. (4 per stick x 2 sticks)
- 12 player button inputs. (6 per player x 2 players)
- 6 admin buttons (P1 Start + P2 Start + 4 others on the front panel)




Scott

Sorry I didn't realize there was no shift capability.  I take it for granted these days.

slybunda

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #15 on: October 03, 2021, 11:48:32 am »
If i go with the 2 arduino controllers then i can add 2 extra buttons one on left and one on right side of cabinet for pinball games?

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #16 on: October 03, 2021, 12:04:02 pm »
If i go with the 2 arduino controllers then i can add 2 extra buttons one on left and one on right side of cabinet for pinball games?

You can wire the pinball buttons to the same inputs that your other buttons are using. I would put two buttons on each side for pinball, one for flipper and one for nudge.

slybunda

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #17 on: October 03, 2021, 12:38:18 pm »
Ahh yes that makes sense if they are wired in parallel to normal buttons then dont have to remap them in mame. Good shout on the nudge buttons.

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #18 on: October 03, 2021, 01:06:49 pm »
I didn't realize there was no shift capability.  I take it for granted these days.
No idea if the firmware OP was talking about can do shifted functions, but it's not likely.

KADE miniArcade 2.0 can do shifted functions, but it can't do two gamepads per AVR board.

If OP was OK using it as a keyboard encoder, he could fit all of the controls on a single Leonardo if 5 of the 6 dedicated admin buttons used shifted functions and blocking diodes.

I take it the kade firmware will allow all buttons to be pressed simultaneously without issues?
You're planning on using a gamepad setup so the keyboard-related "boot protocol" six button limit is irrelevant.

You won't run into that problem as long as you're using an encoder made this century that's not a hack, not a matrix, and not made by X-Arcade prior to Feb 2014.
2. The keyboard encoder options commonly mentioned on BYOAC (I-Pac, KeyWiz, KADE, Feb 2014 or newer X-Arcade, etc.) use dedicated inputs and do not use "boot protocol".   ;D

If i go with the 2 arduino controllers then i can add 2 extra buttons one on left and one on right side of cabinet for pinball games?
Yes, you'll have lots of spare inputs.
- Depending on the tables you want to play, you may also want Ball Launch, R/L/U Nudge, and (if you really want to go overboard) R/L Upper Flipper/MagnaSave.  AFAIK the diagram below covers all possible pinball table buttons.
- Instead of standard microswitch buttons for the flippers/nudge, you might want GGG Class-X with True-Leaf Pro or Ultimarc Goldleaf buttons.



If you're using 2-terminal buttons (Goldleaf, leaf switches, etc.) you can use diodes like this to isolate the MAME switches from each other while allowing Upper Flipper/MagnaSave to apply ground to both inputs.




Scott

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #19 on: October 03, 2021, 01:20:16 pm »
Thanks for that info. Im waiting for the arduino leonardo to arrive. I will run it as a single joystick controller. If it works as intended then i will get another one.

Eventually will want to get some better stickers on the cab too. Something that looks like a full wrap would look good.

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #20 on: October 04, 2021, 05:37:50 am »
one of these microswitches is worn out too. any ideas on what sort of replacement i need? :

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #21 on: October 04, 2021, 10:10:25 am »
With those cheap knockoff components, it's going to be an ongoing struggle. I would ditch all the buttons and sticks and replace them with quality arcade parts. Even if you did that just for the two sticks and the 12 action buttons, it would be a huge upgrade for probably less than 75 bucks. I would also get a new blank panel and re-drill the holes using a template from here. https://www.slagcoin.com/joystick/layout.html

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #22 on: October 04, 2021, 10:12:11 am »
Drive to the house of the person who gave you that cab and throw it through their bedroom window.

Start from scratch.

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #23 on: October 04, 2021, 11:08:49 am »
Darn I can't see any of the photos to join in the fun.  I guess wherever they are hosted is blocked from my location.  I see all of PL1'a photos so if you post them to this website things would work better and be available when you expire.

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #24 on: October 04, 2021, 11:16:27 am »
Drive to the house of the person who gave you that cab and throw it through their bedroom window.

Start from scratch.

LOL Savage, but I agree, building from scratch is 50% of the fun.
Ms Pacman (All Original)
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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #25 on: October 04, 2021, 11:35:56 am »
Drive to the house of the person who gave you that cab and throw it through their bedroom window.

Start from scratch.

I was waiting for this. 

It's probably salvageable if OP puts in some elbow grease but yeah it needs work.

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #26 on: October 04, 2021, 11:40:25 am »
I should have taken video but I had a bartop I built a few years ago based on plans from TheGeekPub.  It wasn't bad but I ended up hating the cheap switches and joystick.  I ended up removing all the guts and then demolished it with a sledge hammer.  I re-used the LCD and some of the parts to build the new NES Bartop I made.

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #27 on: October 04, 2021, 12:34:35 pm »
I would ditch all the buttons and sticks and replace them with quality arcade parts.
I agree that the microswitches and Zippyy sticks are cheap components, but in that last picture you can see that the button has an "IL" mold mark so the buttons are probably still good.

That said, buttons are inexpensive so it might be easier to replace the buttons and switches than sort through the replacement switch options from vendors like GGG or PAS.

I would also get a new blank panel and re-drill the holes using a template from here. https://www.slagcoin.com/joystick/layout.html
+1 on Slagcoin layouts.

A cardboard or hardboard test panel with real buttons will let you feel which template works best for you.

Our opinions about whether "straight six" or curved or staggered layouts are our favorites aren't nearly as important as you finding your favorite.   :cheers:


Scott

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #28 on: October 04, 2021, 01:22:07 pm »
Thanks for the input guys. I feared as such that it may need a full overhaul.
I replaced the CPU today gone from p4 531 to a p4 925 and its a massive difference even in loading stuff up. Well worth the 3.25p outlay.

We played a couple of games today, double dragon, in the hunt, and final fight and it works very well. There is issues with ghosted input's and missed button presses but thats probably down to the crappy keyboard interface card.

This is not something that will be used daily. Most likely the kid will play and hour or 2 on the weekends so i do want to keep it on the cheap.
Before i start investing in new buttons etc im gonna wait for the arduino leonardo to come and test how that works out then take things from there.

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #29 on: October 04, 2021, 01:32:03 pm »
Is this the switch thats compatible?
https://uk.rs-online.com/web/p/microswitches/6822796/

Seems expensive.

Edit: found another shop with a few different brands, some very cheap indeed.
https://www.arcadeworlduk.com/categories/Arcade-Parts/Microswitches/

The buttons i have seem to have a iL brand on them. Dont know if thats good or bad.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2021, 02:08:24 pm by slybunda »

PL1

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #30 on: October 04, 2021, 03:38:30 pm »
Looks like Arcadeworld UK has a good selection of switches.   ;D

You'll probably want either 20 gram (light) or 50 gram (medium) actuation force switches for your player buttons.
- Avoid 125 gram (heavy) switches.  Those are usually used for joysticks or buttons like Exit where you don't want to trigger it by accident.

These three look like good options:
Zippyy - https://www.arcadeworlduk.com/products/ZIPPY-Button-Microswitch.html
E-Switch - https://www.arcadeworlduk.com/products/E-Switch-Button-Microswitch.html
D44X Cherry - https://www.arcadeworlduk.com/products/d44x-cherry-button-microswitch-with-4-8mm-terminals.html

The buttons i have seem to have a iL brand on them. Dont know if thats good or bad.
Industrias Lorenzo used to make parts for Happ before Happ eventually outsourced production to factories in China around 2005.

Parts from IL are as good as or better than the equivalent parts from Happ.

For example, the IL Eurojoystick is better than the Happ Competition stick due to the material used for the pivot and actuator.  IL uses nylon for these parts.  Happ uses PVC.



With a few notable exceptions ("Ultimate" stick+buttons, USB/PS2 trackball encoder, etc.) IL/Happ parts are very good.   ;D


Scott
EDIT: Fixed the inaccurate timeline reference pointed out below by RandyT.   :embarassed:
« Last Edit: October 05, 2021, 10:05:14 am by PL1 »

slybunda

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #31 on: October 04, 2021, 05:24:09 pm »
thanks for that info. i will look into ordering some spare switches.

Also take a look at this pic of the joysticks on my cab. few people above have said i should recut it for better layout but i dont have much horizontal width to the cab so whats recommended?


slybunda

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #32 on: October 05, 2021, 01:48:24 am »
Darn I can't see any of the photos to join in the fun.  I guess wherever they are hosted is blocked from my location.  I see all of PL1'a photos so if you post them to this website things would work better and be available when you expire.

I did try uploading direct to this site but got error messages think it said not valid or something. I could try again and see if it works. I did resize to make file size of each pic around 500kb but still no good. Hosting site i used was imgbb.

slybunda

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #33 on: October 05, 2021, 03:12:58 am »
Darn I can't see any of the photos to join in the fun.  I guess wherever they are hosted is blocked from my location.  I see all of PL1'a photos so if you post them to this website things would work better and be available when you expire.

hope these pics show up now for you.

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #34 on: October 05, 2021, 09:16:52 am »
Industrias Lorenzo used to make parts for Happ before Happ outsourced production to factories in China around 2005.

Just a quick history correction:  HAPP dropped IL for their horizontal pushbuttons a number of years prior to that.  Before moving production to China (as pretty much everyone was doing) HAPP had their own molds made and those buttons were produced here in the US.

But there's nothing wrong with IL buttons, other than possibly the switches.  Those are the first thing I would look at if performance is lacking.

slybunda

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #35 on: October 05, 2021, 10:32:50 am »
the buttons seems to work fine. one switch on the front panel is a bit iffy where i got to press it hard and it doesnt make the usual click sound so will focus on replacing that and then take things from there.
is there any special maintenance to be done on the buttons? should i spray some ptfe oil into them? any lubing etc?

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #36 on: October 05, 2021, 12:40:16 pm »
the buttons seems to work fine. one switch on the front panel is a bit iffy where i got to press it hard and it doesnt make the usual click sound so will focus on replacing that and then take things from there.
is there any special maintenance to be done on the buttons? should i spray some ptfe oil into them? any lubing etc?

Depending on the age of the buttons, the slick shiny finish could get worn away and start creating some friction.  If they are sticky, take them apart and wash the plastic parts in some warm soapy water.  Dry them well and give them a shot of silicone spray or similar dry lubrication if necessary.

But don't underestimate the improvement which can be had with some better quality switches.  It looks like you have the typical inexpensive Chinese switches and while they work, they just won't perform as well as some better alternatives.


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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #37 on: October 05, 2021, 12:41:34 pm »
Understood. Are cherry branded switches good?

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #38 on: October 05, 2021, 04:54:07 pm »
Understood. Are cherry branded switches good?

Cherry switches are good, but just because the brand is Cherry, it doesn't mean that the switch will necessarily be good for an arcade pushbutton.  There are many different parameters used in the construction of a microswitch, few if any of which may be discerned from only a photo on the internet.  Actuator height, point of actuation, spring strength, reset distance, etc... My advice would be to sample a few different varieties of switches advertised for this purpose and once you find one which feels good to you, go ahead and populate the rest of your buttons with that type.

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Re: Got a bartop cabinet fixer-upper
« Reply #39 on: October 05, 2021, 07:33:52 pm »
Drive to the house of the person who gave you that cab and throw it through their bedroom window.

Start from scratch.

At least get some bar top plans. 

I was biting my tongue not to remark on that.