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Author Topic: First Time Build - "Chimera" (Completed... mostly)  (Read 8411 times)

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Yenome

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera"
« Reply #40 on: December 08, 2021, 06:30:45 pm »
Here i am thinking of making several diff cabs now i can just combine an upright a vpin in one. I had been trying to come up with a way to pull this off with just a pedestal that would be in horizontal mode until you picked the pinball or vertical list. then it would change or you could manually rotate the screen. i never did come up with a way for the second screen to come from some where to be the backglass/dmd. Awesome work cant wait to see the final results.
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zeorangr

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera"
« Reply #41 on: December 11, 2021, 11:27:02 am »
Here i am thinking of making several diff cabs now i can just combine an upright a vpin in one. I had been trying to come up with a way to pull this off with just a pedestal that would be in horizontal mode until you picked the pinball or vertical list. then it would change or you could manually rotate the screen. i never did come up with a way for the second screen to come from some where to be the backglass/dmd. Awesome work cant wait to see the final results.


Thanks Yenome!

Depending on how deep down the rabbit hole you want to go with (or how readily available tools, space, and time may be for you for) building your own cabinet, you could still do something with a pedestal-type control panel, and attach a screen to one of the same TV stands I've been using for my software and marquee work while my cabinet is still in progress.  The stand allows for horizontal / vertical rotation, and also will extend / fold down so that the TV will lay flat.  I posted a video showing this earlier, but the video doesn't really highlight the stand's ability to move / rotate.  I ordered the TV Stand  from Buy Stuff Arcades in Canada, and built my own pedestal to hold the ATGames Legends Gamer controller.  It looks like they're adding some more accessories on their site for this setup now too, like backbox attachments for pinball, or pedestal kits for mounting controls to.  Even after finishing my cab, I may leave this up and running in the front room as well, next to my cabinet, depending on what the Mrs. says.   ;D

I'm going to head back down to the woodshop in a couple of hours, so hopefully I'll be able to post some more progress pics tonight.  I'm going to run to lowes in a little bit and get several more cans of paint and try to at least start painting the main cab some today.  I have a couple of different ideas for the 'pinball profile panels' that I want to try to feel out as well.  We'll see how it turns out!
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zeorangr

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera"
« Reply #42 on: December 12, 2021, 11:20:10 am »
I was able to get the cabinet stripped down yesterday, and started painting - first coat of primer is on for the main cabinet. 

Before:




After:





I ran out of time last night, so this is as far as I got, but it's still more progress.  Woo, progress.  I'll head back down there next Saturday and fill and then sand, and then put another coat on.  I'm off work the following week, so I should be able to spend additional time down there and get the painting finished and get the cabinet reassembled, but I'll have to see how it goes.
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zeorangr

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera"
« Reply #43 on: January 13, 2022, 04:56:39 pm »
Quick update - no pics today.

Cabinet is fully painted and mostly assembled at this point.  I think I got a bad / old can of paint, as there are some rough spots on the sides that I didn't see while I was painting.  I want to bring it home though, so rough paint job is going to have to stand for now. When (not if... because it's going to bug me eventually) it gets to the point that I can't stand it anymore, I'll drag it out to the driveway and put some plastic down and fix the paint job, but it's good enough for now.

I'm currently planning on taking tomorrow off work and going down to the shop to finish up the few little things I need to do, like mounting the cabinet doors, cutting and mounting the marquee acrylic, and finishing up the back panel cover. 

I never got to do much with the 'pinball profile panels' that Laythe had suggested, but I really like that idea, so those will eventually be added, just may be a few more weeks on those.  At the moment, I really just want to get it up here so I can finish up the configuration stuff and get it functional.

I'll share pictures once I get it moved and in-place in the living room.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2022, 04:58:32 pm by zeorangr »
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Groeneklodder

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera"
« Reply #44 on: January 26, 2022, 03:06:37 am »
That's a great and very unique build right there! As you allready saw my build on FB i like your approach of the hybrid systemn very much. Keep up the good work !!

zeorangr

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera"
« Reply #45 on: January 26, 2022, 10:11:52 am »
That's a great and very unique build right there! As you allready saw my build on FB i like your approach of the hybrid systemn very much. Keep up the good work !!

Thank you Groeneklodder!   :cheers:


Progress is still being made - Here's a picture from last weekend:



1/4" Acrylic in place over main screen and marquee screen (with vinyl bezel on the marquee 'glass')- still need to finish up the rest of the main screen 'bezel' (which will be about 1/2" of either cardboard, vinyl, or craft foam, just enough to cover the small gap between the 50" screen and the sides of the box, and also cover up the already tiny samsung logo on the right side in the center of the screen).  Finishing up the 'false' back as well to cover the exposed cabling and rear of the backglass screens, but this is just almost ready to bring home and drop in place in the next week or two, depending on how much I can get done this coming Saturday. 

On the software side of things, need to finish the configuration and button mapping for LEDBlinky so that it lights the appropriate controls correctly per game, and ensure all the controls and related scripts are remapped from the ATGames panel (which is on the prototype) to the iPac, but I don't expect that to take more than maybe an afternoon once I actually get it up here. 

Other than that, I need to go back through the games list and either remove or hide a few more MAME games that I either don't plan to include or don't have a good 'random-person-friendly' control scheme for yet, add and configure a few more steam games (and create matching artwork for said games) that I bought during the winter sale (like Streets of Rage 4, among others), and maybe clean up the music videos section some more.  I'm sure I'll find more things to tweak once I get in and start tinkering with the software too - still haven't had a chance to hook up the Sinden lightgun and mess with it much yet, so I've got that coming as well.

So yay, progress!
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javeryh

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera"
« Reply #46 on: January 26, 2022, 11:50:20 am »
This cab is coming out great.  We don't see a ton of innovation these days but this definitely checks the box.  You are also working quick - we could all use some lessons from you in that department!   :cheers:

How did you tell MAME to only use the top part of the display when you are in arcade mode?

zeorangr

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera"
« Reply #47 on: January 26, 2022, 12:17:57 pm »
This cab is coming out great.  We don't see a ton of innovation these days but this definitely checks the box.  You are also working quick - we could all use some lessons from you in that department!   :cheers:

How did you tell MAME to only use the top part of the display when you are in arcade mode?

 Thanks Javeryh!   :)  I think it just appears that I'm working quick.  This has been built in blocks of time, 3-6 hours per week just about every Saturday for the last 12 months or so.  It's definitely not as fast as I'd like, that's for sure!

As for the display - on the 50", I'm running a custom windows desktop resolution of 1080x1080 (configured via the Nvidia control panel), which basically makes a square in the middle of this screen, which is what is visible when it's folded up into the 'upright' configuration - the top 1/4 and bottom 1/4 of the screen are hidden by the marquee and control panel, respectively.  Mame (and DEMUL) will then use and 'fit' the game screen into this square area.   For PC games, I've got most of them set (or forced with scripts calling third-party utilities for a couple that just wouldn't play nicely) to resize / scale and rotate / re-orient / otherwise fit into this 1080x1080 space as well.  Pinball FX actually changes the resolution to 1080x1920 currently, and will be moving to a 4k vertical (2160 x 3840) resolution once I get the machine moved up here and get the GTX 1080 I've got reserved for the cabinet actually installed.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2022, 12:19:29 pm by zeorangr »
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dir

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera"
« Reply #48 on: February 02, 2022, 06:28:16 am »
I came back into byoc looking for one thing, and an hour later, here I am reconsidering my next project to now be a telescoping vertical/horizontal cab.  Argh!
Great work, progress, and innovations.  Just a quick question - did you consider having the console rotate down when in pinball mode, so that the controls rotate out of the way and allow the player to be closer to the pinball?  I haven't worked out how that would work, but it seems a logical extension of the mechanical actions already there.  If the console was on a pivot on the top side, nearest the screen, then when everything slides out, the buttons, sticks etc. would end up vertical (and, I suppose, sticking into the player's legs).
I guess it comes down to how intrusive the large control surface is when trying to play pinball.  Is the parallax affected or distorted?

Argh, now I'm thinking about how to get head tracking working as well...

Maybe I should finish my current project(s) first.  This one could be huggggeeeee....

zeorangr

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera"
« Reply #49 on: February 03, 2022, 01:16:15 pm »
I came back into byoc looking for one thing, and an hour later, here I am reconsidering my next project to now be a telescoping vertical/horizontal cab.  Argh!
Great work, progress, and innovations.  Just a quick question - did you consider having the console rotate down when in pinball mode, so that the controls rotate out of the way and allow the player to be closer to the pinball?  I haven't worked out how that would work, but it seems a logical extension of the mechanical actions already there.  If the console was on a pivot on the top side, nearest the screen, then when everything slides out, the buttons, sticks etc. would end up vertical (and, I suppose, sticking into the player's legs).
I guess it comes down to how intrusive the large control surface is when trying to play pinball.  Is the parallax affected or distorted?

Argh, now I'm thinking about how to get head tracking working as well...

Maybe I should finish my current project(s) first.  This one could be huggggeeeee....

Hey dir - Thanks! 

I considered several crazier options for doing this, but since this is the first cab I've ever built and I didn't really have a lot of woodworking or building experience going into this, I tried to keep it simpler.  And yes, I realize the irony of what I wound up building being the 'simpler' option.   I did consider having the main control panel somehow rotate or slide out of the way somehow, possibly via a second linear actuator, and then wiring up a second control board under the main screen with pinball flipper and launch buttons wired up within the main screen box itself, but I think that was going to get way more complicated than I was equipped to handle for this go-round.  Maybe next time!   ;D

The larger control surface isn't too intrusive in my opinion, but these kinds of things are subjective.  I haven't noticed any parallax issues, personally.

Really, the only major thing I feel like is missing is a way to control the screen movement via a script.  It's not a huge inconvenience to open the coin door and hit the button to extend it when you want to play pinball, but it would be definitely much higher on the 'scale of awesome' if it transformed itself when a pinball table was selected, and then folded itself back up when exiting the table...  I'm still looking at possibilities for that and will definitely incorporate that once I figure out how to make it happen.  There are some USB relays that have the ability to be controlled via batch files that look promising, but I haven't gotten off into that just yet - still have plenty of work to do to finish up what I've got now!  :)

As far as a progress update goes, last Sunday we took everything apart and loaded it all up in my truck - we've got the cabinet home now from the shop and I have started working on all the additional software and configuration stuff - more scripting for specific game controller mappings, custom LED Blinky animations for some games, more marquee images, adding a few more steam games, and stuff like that.  When I get closer to 'finished' I'll post some final pictures and probably another video or two with it in action.  I can say though that it's looking GREAT.   

More to come soon.
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zeorangr

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera" (Completed... mostly)
« Reply #50 on: April 08, 2022, 02:52:47 pm »
It's about that time - going to call it done (for now)!  I've updated the first post with more info.
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bobbyb13

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera" (Completed... mostly)
« Reply #51 on: April 08, 2022, 10:26:04 pm »
Looks remarkable from your pics.
Nicely done.
Now that it is in its place...
Does the pinball playfield deployment work the way you wanted it to and does it all play the way you wanted it to?
Relax, all right? My old man is a television repairman, he's got this ultimate set of tools! I can fix it.

zeorangr

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera" (Completed... mostly)
« Reply #52 on: April 09, 2022, 10:32:22 am »
Looks remarkable from your pics.
Nicely done.
Now that it is in its place...
Does the pinball playfield deployment work the way you wanted it to and does it all play the way you wanted it to?

Thanks bobbyb13!

To answer your questions:

The Upright -> Pinball transform works pretty much exactly the way I've envisioned this entire time, though having gotten through this build, there are definitely a few things I'd improve on knowing what I know now - I'd probably look to refine things a bit further.  One example would be to maybe add something like pillow block bearings as part of the rear screen mount, just for a better fit and a bit smoother movement.  I'd also still like to keep learning about the electronics side of things, and be able to not feel like a deer in headlights when I have to pull out the soldering iron.  I DID manage to successfully cut an old wii sensor bar apart and then mount and re-wire up the resulting parts for my current 'lightguns', so I felt pretty good about that.   ;)   if/when the parts are in stock again, I may try to build a couple of the Gun4IR guns.  Figuring out how to wire up a couple of USB-controlled relays and attach them so that I can control the screen movement via scripts is still on the list for this at some point as well.

As to whether everything plays the way I'd want it to, it absolutely does.  I'm using a combination of Joy2Key, UCR (universal control remapper), and STEAM controller remapping depending on the game, and I've been able to come up with pretty functional (in my opinion) control schemes for everything so far.

I may still buy a couple of U360's and swap them out for the servostiks that are in there at some point, to see if the trade off of having analog-capable joysticks for the couple of games that would greatly benefit from that (geometry wars is a prime example) is worth giving up the 'tactile' feeling of the joystick hitting the microswitches for most games.

But overall, I'm more than satisfied.  I still have moments, like when I first wake up in the morning and walk into the front room on the way to the kitchen for coffee, and I see the cabinet, and I think to myself "holy --muffins--, I actually did it."  And that's what makes it so worth it.

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zeorangr

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Re: First Time Build - "Chimera" (Completed... mostly)
« Reply #53 on: May 02, 2022, 09:36:58 am »
Still working on software - Added a Spotify launch script with a few extras.  :)

More details in the youtube description.


« Last Edit: May 02, 2022, 09:39:30 am by zeorangr »
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