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Author Topic: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)  (Read 121950 times)

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unclet

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #80 on: May 08, 2009, 07:22:59 am »
Why not use both nets at the same time?  Might look cool, but not  :dunno

jeffhlewis

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #81 on: May 09, 2009, 05:59:15 pm »
I've been gone from BYOAC for a while, and came back and saw this.  AWESOME!  Love the voice and everything.
 

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #82 on: May 15, 2009, 01:39:40 am »
05/14/09 Part 1

jeffhlewis - Thanks!  Yeah RandyT did a great job with the software... everyone that has played it gets a kick out of the audio.

So lost some steam over the past few weeks (well, money really) but I’ve finally started working on this thing again.  Over this past week, I finally got around to cleaning up the wires inside the machine.  I also desoldered the potentiometer from the speaker board and stuck it on the back of the machine, and stuck a cool little volume dial on it (which I actually got for free since it was out of its package and the Radio Shack employee that helped me didn’t feel like looking it up).  Unfortunately with this new dial, my Skeeball machine doesn’t go to 11.  Oh well.

I also attached a power button and power led to the back.  I really had to keep myself from going led crazy, since at one point I was considering putting an hdd activity led and a speaker power led before I asked myself why in the hell I would possibly need those things.  I settled with the power led even though that wasn’t really necessary either.

I attached the vinyl flooring to the back of the scoring area, so it no longer makes a *CRACK!* sound every time someone overshoots the rings and hits the back.  I also added the spring door protectors behind the 50 and 100 rings to make sure the balls can’t get stuck behind them. They’re not exactly pretty, but they fit my budget and like everything else I can always replace them later.  Functionally, they work perfectly and once the net is put together I don’t think they’ll be noticeable.  I also finally bolted the 10 ring completely, so it doesn't look all warped along the sides.  The rings still need to be glued to close any gaps around the edges, but other than that they are done.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2009, 01:49:11 am by thatpurplestuff »

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #83 on: May 15, 2009, 01:44:12 am »
05/14/09 Part 2

Tonight, I finally got around to starting the net frame.  Unclet was once again kind enough to provide measurements, but I'm only using them as a rough guide and not going by them exactly.  I don’t have the wood to cut the final version yet, but I used scraps to create one side of a very rudimentary frame for the net.  I used different sizes of scrap to make this, and obviously the final version will all be the same thickness.  I really like the rough shape of it, and I think it will look killer once it is cut and has nice curved angles and routed edges.  I think I’m going to use the frame as an excuse to play around making different types of joints with my router, so hopefully it won’t be a disaster.  Gonna be camping this weekend, but I’m hoping to get a little bit of work done Friday night and Sunday afternoon.  More updates later!
« Last Edit: May 15, 2009, 01:53:25 am by thatpurplestuff »

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

Xiaou2

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #84 on: May 15, 2009, 10:55:52 pm »

 I think you may want to reconsider the net frame made with MDF.   A heavy
skeeball hitting the frame on accident from a poor player would most likely result in
the frame cracking.  (if not from one hit.. then a few of them would probably do it)

 MDF just isnt very strong - especially when that thin.

 

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #85 on: May 18, 2009, 12:46:04 am »
Xiaou2- I have been going back and forth about what to build the frame out of.  I actually purchased a heat gun and PVC a few weeks ago, but ended up returning them both and considering MDF instead.  You've made me reconsider my decision again, and tonight I actually went out and re-bought a heat gun, PVC, some PVC joints, and a bag of sand.

I'm going to attach some nails to the rough frame that I built and use it as a template to form the PVC around and see how well it works.  PVC is pretty cheap so even if I do a horrible job at first, I can just keep trying until I get something I like.  All of the resources that I've found suggest just filling the pipe with sand, heating it, and then bending to the desired shape.  When I was in Boy Scouts we used a similar technique to make snowshoes, but that was a REALLY long time ago.  We'll see how this goes.

For some reason it isn't giving me the option to upload photos or I'd show the supplies I just purchased for the frame.  Weird.  I'm hoping to start bending the frame tomorrow after work, so hopefully some updates soon.

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

ivwshane

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #86 on: May 18, 2009, 04:11:38 am »
Why not purchase aluminum u-channel? It's easy to cut and bend and should be sturdier than mdf and looks nicer than pvc.

unclet

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #87 on: May 18, 2009, 07:08:49 am »
I agree, metal would make it look nice and shiny if metal is possible.

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #88 on: May 18, 2009, 04:09:25 pm »
Thanks for the input, guys.  I've never worked with u-channel aluminum, but I just assumed that I would need special tools to bend any metal into a frame shape.  Could you guys suggest some introductory reading about working with the stuff?  I think I may still try to use this PVC to make a frame, but if aluminum is easy enough to work with I might try a second version using it.

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

ivwshane

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #89 on: May 18, 2009, 08:11:13 pm »
I don't have any resources myself, all of my experience has been trial and error.

Just cut V's (the width of the V is dependent on the angle you want to create) into the sides and bend.

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #90 on: May 19, 2009, 02:12:24 am »
I made the frame tonight out of PVC, and I gotta say it turned out great.  I haven't bolted it on to the machine, but after using clamps to temporarily attach it to the scoring the angles look absolutely perfect.  Once this frame gets painted and I get the net sewn up and put on it, I really think it is going to look great.  I used two cross-pipes for this version to provide more stability, but I may remove the one closest to the front and only keep the one on top.  I'm going to see how this one plays for a bit before I decide one way or another... another pipe is only a buck fifty so even if I decide to change it I'm not going to eat much in terms of wasted materials.

Unfortunately, I no longer have the option to attach pictures to my posts... is anyone else having this problem?  I'm not sure if I reached a picture limit or something, or if it is a problem on my end.  Regardless, here's a pic of the frame hosted on imageshack in the meantime.

« Last Edit: May 19, 2009, 02:40:58 am by thatpurplestuff »

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

DragonMa15

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #91 on: May 19, 2009, 12:35:30 pm »
This is really looking great.  But I would use conduit for the cage.  And use pipe insulation to pad it.  I think the wooden balls are really going to beat up the pvc.  And conduit is pretty easy to work with.  You should be able to find all the connectors for it just like you have in pvc.

-Gregg

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #92 on: May 20, 2009, 01:22:15 am »
I bolted the frame on tonight, and attached the net with zip ties.  I took a bunch of pics, but uploading them through imageshack is a pain.  I'm posting a few just to give people an idea of what it looks like right now, and I'll post the rest when the image upload feature is working for me again. 

I rushed the net to make it playable, since our friend is graduating this weekend and we've got friends coming from out of town wanting to check out Skeeball.  Obviously, the final net won't be connected with zip ties but it works as a temporary fix.  Eventually I'm going to have cloth sewn along the edges and grommeted, so it should look pretty snazzy.  Most importantly, though, is that it works great and players can finally shoot for the 100 rings.  The PVC has a bit more bounce than I would have preferred, but it's not too bad.







« Last Edit: May 20, 2009, 01:23:58 am by thatpurplestuff »

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

coyote640

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #93 on: August 23, 2009, 05:13:55 pm »
Very Nice.... Alot of hard work....
Good luck on the completion, and thanks for the informative posts....

Silas (son of Silas)

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #94 on: August 23, 2009, 05:20:06 pm »
Very Nice.... Alot of hard work....
Good luck on the completion, and thanks for the informative posts....
+1

I have never played this type of game, but I have really enjoyed this thread.
" ਜਿਹੜਾ ਲਾਓ ਜਰਦਾ ਉਹ ਸੌ ਸਾਲ ਨੰਈ ਮਰਦਾ " (he who chews tobacco would live to be a hundred )

My Project MAME clone
Who is Silas?

drventure

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #95 on: August 23, 2009, 05:43:15 pm »
Nice work. I've missed the updates on this thread somehow, but that looks like a blast!

n88n

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #96 on: August 24, 2009, 11:41:58 am »
awesome work man.  My wife and I LOVE skeeball and I have thought or really joked about building one, but you pulled it off.  damn fine work!  I am totally jealous.
 :cheers: :cheers:

Beretta

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #97 on: August 24, 2009, 12:29:26 pm »
wow great project, im also a fan of skeeball one of the few redemption games i actually like.

i wondered how hard it would be to make one and it looks every bit as hard as i thought, although you've done an amazing job.

btw are you gonna cover the alley? or leave it bare wood?

most the skeeball's i ever played on had some sort of covering.. kinda reminded me of leather or something.
Anyone got change for a dollar?
PLEASE HELP NEED Fastmame .70 and .9* releases

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #98 on: August 24, 2009, 10:57:11 pm »
coyote640, n88n and Silas- Thanks for the kind words everyone!

Beretta- The "wood" ramp that you are seeing is actually fake vinyl flooring.  It gives the ramp some padding while covering up the thin MDF that I used.  I couldn't afford to cork type material that they use on actual Skeeball machines so I went with the fake wood look.  I like it right now, but I have intentionally installed it so that it can be replaced very easily if I choose to.

drventure- Although I haven't been active in your thread, I have been keeping up with your awesome project.  Your machine is looking absolutely killer. 

I haven't disappeared or ditched this project by any means... I've just postponed work until it starts to cool down around here.  It's common for it to be over 100 during the day, and the garage is 5-10 degrees hotter.  Even at night the garage stays in the 90's so it is a fairly miserable workplace.  On a positive note, the machine has been getting a lot of use and it is standing up amazingly well to the abuse that has been thrown at it.

I'm guessing in a month or so I will make some final changes to the inner workings: mainly add a foam layer underneath the scoring area to mute the sound of the balls landing on the wood below.  It's a bit loud as it is, and I plan to get this thing exactly how I want it before I throw some coats of paint on it.  The net still needs to be stitched up as well.

In the meantime my friends and I have been hashing out the rules for the upcoming (October-ish?) Skeeball League.  I'll make sure to update as soon as it cools down enough to get some work done on this thing!  Thanks again!

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #99 on: December 02, 2009, 02:22:07 am »
Finally some progress!  Been really busy the last 6 months... finally got engaged to an amazingly patient woman that supports this goofy habit.

No significant changes to the exterior of the Skeeball machine, but this beast is undergoing a COMPLETE overhaul in terms of software and scoring.

My fiance and I have been wanting to get the Skeeball league up and running, but I REALLY wanted to have my own software on this thing before that happened.  3 weeks ago I set out to create my very own Skeeball software using Flash, and I just finished the first complete version of it a few days ago.  I had never really done any serious Flash coding (if you can consider Skeeball software "serious") so a LOT of my time was spent just learning through trial and error.  A lot of if/else's later, I've got my first working prototype that includes all of the game modes that I set out to create on this first version.  Aside from the new game modes, I also coded in a "debounce" delay that is controlled by a variable, so I can stop the triggers from accidently double-scoring (which was a huge pain to manually tweak before).  Anyway, I'll show a screenshot and brief description of each game mode below:

Menu:


Regular: This is fairly obvious since it is just the basic Skeeball rules.  The player rolls 9 balls and tries to get the highest score by getting them into the rings.


Old School: This is to simulate the older machines before they came up with the 100 rings on each side.  Exactly the same game as regular, except 100 rings are disabled... if the player hits one it only counts for 10 points.


Cliffhanger: For those familiar with The Price is Right, you might recognize the visual similarities between this and the game from that show.  When you hit the 10 ring he climbs to the 10 (and does a pretty sweet yodel), when you hit the 20 he climbs to the 20, and so on.  The objective is to get to the top of the mountain (100) in the least number of rolls.


310: A game based on the dart game "301".  The player starts out with 310 points and needs to get their score to exactly 0 by subtracting points as they hit rings.  If they score more points than they have left, the points don't get subtracted and it still counts as a roll.  The objective is to get to 0 in the least number of rolls.


Three Skee: Aside from the crappy name, this game plays like the dart game "Shanghai".  The player is given 3 shots at every ring, and they need to hit that specific ring or they don't get any points.  The objective is to get the highest score after rolling 3 balls at every ring.


Cricket: The last of the dart-based games, this game mode is based on the game "Cricket".  Clever name, I know.  Essentially, the player needs to hit every ring number 3 times to close it out, and the goal is to close out every number in the least number of rolls.


Flash:  This game is inspired by the Neo Geo arcade game "League Bowling" and will hopefully be a blast to play.  It plays like regular Skeeball except there is a score multiplier meter along the side that moves up and down between 1x, 3x, and 5x.  When the player scores a ball in a ring, they get whatever multiplier that is currently highlighted.


Bowling:  I have a feeling this is going to be the most fun to play.  This is meant to play similar to actual bowling except that for every 10 points that you get, it counts as 1 pin.  For example, the 50 ring counts as 5 pins, the 100 rings count for 10 pins (a strike), etc.  The big difference is that on the first roll of every frame, you get a multiplier based on how many neon pins (1-5) are lit up at the bottom.  This is to make it so the player has a better chance of picking up a spare, since if we went on just the ring #'s the only way to get a spare would be to either get two 50's in a row or finish your second roll with a 100.  The scoring and scoreboard operate exactly like real bowling, which really surprised me in how difficult it was to get everything working for this game.  This was by far the hardest game to get working and took about a week just by itself.


Combo: When enabled, this mode actually effects Regular, 310, Three Skee, and Old School.  Basically, players get a multiplier by hitting the same ring twice in a row.  For instance, if a player hits 30 twice in a row they get 60 for the second roll roll, 3 times they get 90, and the 4th time they get 120.  The multiplier maxes out at 4 to stop people from being able to aim for the lowest ring the entire game and still ending up with a decent score.


So now that I've got the software working 100% (at least on the computer) I need to modify my machine to be able to use it.  I had originally configured this thing so that 100's are actually just 50's triggered twice, so I need to lay everything out so that each ring is completely independent of the others.  I was very sloppy in my rush to get things playable, so my trigger setup left a lot to be desired and the overall layout left room for errors in the scoring.  I'm also going to take this opportunity to cut back on the majority of noise this thing creates by removing the wooden back underneath the scoring panel and replacing it with some memory foam stuff we have lying around.  This should cut down on noise significantly, as most of the noise right now is the "crack" that you hear when the wooden ball drops through the hole and hits the wood backboard.

Finally, I would like to again thank RandyT for letting me use his software before I had written my own.  Without knowing his Jumpball software existed, I may not have even built this thing.  I will eventually post a link to my software for any potential / future / would-be Skeeball builders out there, but I really want to make sure everything works first.  I'm hoping to get everything up and running by Thursday, and tomorrow I'll post more pics of my complete rewire of the scoring area.  Thanks for reading!
« Last Edit: December 02, 2009, 02:27:38 am by thatpurplestuff »

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

Queeg

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #100 on: December 02, 2009, 02:41:33 am »
Congrats on the engagement!  :cheers:

I am thoroughly impressed with your flash work. I have some experience in video and animation in flash and even after working with it for a while it can still be a challenge.

How is the machine interfacing with the pc? Are you using a keyboard encoder that translates the switch hits into something that flash can detect?

 

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #101 on: December 02, 2009, 10:37:08 am »
Queeg- Thanks!  I had done a bit with Flash a few years ago, but nothing more than basic animation for a website menu... it was definitely a headache to get everything working with actionscript.  I'm using a Keywiz keyboard encoder from GroovyGameGear to interface the pc and the Skeeball machine.  While writing the software, I made the rings just use the letters a, s, d, f, g, h, j, and k to make it easy for me to test.  I was going to just reconfigure the software to use the keys that the Keywiz is set for, but then I realized that it's a snap to just run the setup for the Keywiz and change the switches in the actual encoder.

I actually already have the scoring area rewired and ready to rock, and I just need to add two more buttons near the player to navigate the menu and one switch to serve as the "gutter" detection.  I'll update with more this evening!

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

n88n

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #102 on: December 02, 2009, 11:22:29 am »
you just took this whole game to another level!!!!

Kudos for taking the time to learn AS and write your own games, very cool.  I absolutely love skee ball and i have been following this build and I love what you have done.  So super cool.

 :notworthy: :notworthy: :notworthy: :notworthy:

samej71

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #103 on: December 03, 2009, 05:07:37 pm »
Hello,

First, I'd like to say thanks to you (and all those you've in-turn thanked) and UncleT for your efforts in a DIY skeeball. It looks like you have a fantastic project.

I've been trying to wrap my head around what it will take to build one, and I'm at a bit of a disadvantage because I've never done any woodworking or metalwork and I will be relying on friends who have for help in those departments. I'm trying to figure out what materials to buy (and how much) and laying out parts on the sheets in a way to maximize each board (minimize waste).

I was originally going to go "stock" with a printed marquee and 6.5" tall 7-segment LED's I found, with a micro-controller for scoring and other functions, but after seeing your flash software and the other game ideas (cricket, 301, etc) I think you've just convinced me your way is *much* better. :)

I was wondering:
1) how is the vinyl holding up? What brand/style is it?
2) how you clamped the vinyl down in the lane so it can be easily replaced, especially at the top end of the lane by the gutter.
3) where did you buy the netting, and have you decided on a final frame structure (conduit, u-channel, etc)?
4) if you figured out anything for the rubber rails/guards for the sides of the lane/alley?
5) what kind of molding you bought (brand/style/model) for the rings?
6) what did you use for the top "plastic" (I can't tell from the pictures) for the sides of the lane?
7) Where did you get your marquee printed?
8) would you consider sharing your MDF layouts for the cuts? I think you mentioned CAD or Sketch-up earlier? Do you have any overall plans you are willing to release at this point?
9) If you would consider listing the various pieces of wood you purchased, ie, 1-4x4x8, 1-4x8 1/4" sheet MDF, 2-4x8 1/2" sheet MDF, 3 door stops, 4 chair bump thingies, etc. ?
10) What did you decide for joining the lane and scoring sections, and are they easily separated/rejoined (like to move the machine)?
11) Have you thought about any kind of "caps" for the ends of the sides of the lane (like what would cover the parts shown in photo 042609_D.JPG)?

Thanks for everything you've shared with us all already. We appreciate it very much!

--James

drventure

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #104 on: December 03, 2009, 06:17:59 pm »
Hadn't seen much action on this thread in a while. Now I know why  :applaud:

Awesome idea with the flash and alternate games. That really does bring a whole new dimension to what I thought was going to be a one trick pony game.

Very nice!

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #105 on: December 04, 2009, 01:55:23 am »
Thank you for the kind words n88n and samej71.  Drventure, your build continues to inspire me to eventually finish my cab using a sweet theme... awesome stuff.

Had a big scare last night when I put the finished software on the machine... the visuals looked great but the sound was playing way too fast.  The yodeler sounded more like a chipmunk than a human being and the bowling pins sounds were just awful.  I was running Windows 98 on the computer, but after a few hours of tinkering with Flash settings and sound drivers and nothing working, I figured I would throw an install of XP on and hope that this slow computer can handle it.  Got XP on tonight, and the game ran slow as molasses.  The sounds were normal but since the score "rolls" upwards and makes noise while it does it, it was actually taking about 5 seconds to count from 0 to 100 when it should only be a second or two.  After a few hours of tinkering with settings, I finally thought to reduce the screen resolution to 800x600... and everything works like a charm.

Attached are a few pictures of the back of the scoring area, as well as the keyboard encoder with the quick connects ready to rock and the new buttons on the machine to navigate the menu.  I plan on using different, smaller buttons for the final layout but since I'm going to replace that piece of wood anyway I figured I would use what I have for now.  Green moves the menu forward, red goes backward and the blue buttons move up and down.  Nothing is connected right now, but hooking up everything should be a breeze tomorrow.

I do still have one big problem though... I have yet to figure out how I am going to detect gutterballs with this layout.  The layout that I had previously used worked great to count gutterballs because the only way a ball would count as "played" is after it triggered a switch on the ball return.  That way, the ball would hit some points at the top and roll all the way down before it hit the "played" trigger.  If you missed all the points and hit the trigger, that was a gutter.  Now, the balls get counted the instant that they score, which works great for everything except gutterballs.  I have to figure out a way to guide the gutterballs so that they avoid just dropping back into the ball return, while at the same time putting the switch in a place that only gutterballs can hit.  I'm probably not making much sense right now but it's late and I've been staring at this thing for too long.  Thanks for the interest everyone, and I promise I'll take the time to answer specific questions soon.

Here are some pics of some of the things I was talking about, and I couldn't help throwing in a picture of bowling loaded up on the Skeeball machine even though the switches aren't hooked up.  I rolled a great game using the keyboard though.


















So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

DaOld Man

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #106 on: December 04, 2009, 09:06:06 am »
Hello thatpurplestuff!
Long time thread watcher, first time commenter here..
I have to say that this is a freakin great build!
I played several skeeball machines when my kids were in that "it's cool to hang out with Dad" stage.
(They dont stay in that stage forever, trust me).
Anyway, if I had the room, I would build one of these babies, using your build as a guide.
Great job!
 :applaud: :applaud: :applaud:

Chicken McNobody

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #107 on: December 04, 2009, 11:47:49 am »
My want to play. . .

Pinball Wizard

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #108 on: December 04, 2009, 04:05:27 pm »
The best part of this Skeeball machine is that the bezel isn't correctly seated so that the CD-drive can be hooked up and hold another extra spare. With all jokes aside I envy this. I love diversity of games and don't mind skeeball. Great build of such a game. Tempting me to build one so bad.
Where's my gold star :P

samej71

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #109 on: December 04, 2009, 04:44:02 pm »
I do still have one big problem though... I have yet to figure out how I am going to detect gutterballs with this layout.  The layout that I had previously used worked great to count gutterballs because the only way a ball would count as "played" is after it triggered a switch on the ball return.  That way, the ball would hit some points at the top and roll all the way down before it hit the "played" trigger.  If you missed all the points and hit the trigger, that was a gutter.  Now, the balls get counted the instant that they score, which works great for everything except gutterballs.  I have to figure out a way to guide the gutterballs so that they avoid just dropping back into the ball return, while at the same time putting the switch in a place that only gutterballs can hit.  I'm probably not making much sense right now but it's late and I've been staring at this thing for too long.  

What if you ignore the gutter trigger (the one in the ball return) if the last trigger was a scoring ball? That is, if the last trigger was a new game/turn or a gutter ball, then the gutter switch would count as a ball.

Have a variable named "ignore_gutter" and set it to "true" (or "1", depending on type) on any scoring trigger. When the gutter/ball return triggers, check the status of "ignore_gutter". If it is true, do not adjust the count and then reset the variable to false or 0. If it is false, then add 1 to the ball count.

Thanks for the interest everyone, and I promise I'll take the time to answer specific questions soon.

Cool. Looking forward to it! :)
« Last Edit: December 04, 2009, 05:02:52 pm by samej71 »

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #110 on: December 04, 2009, 10:58:02 pm »
samej71 - Awesome!  That is such a simple (yet perfect) solution but for some reason it never even crossed my mind.  I think I mentioned it before, but I tend to overcomplicate things every once in a while.  I was in the mindset that whatever solution I was going to use would be a strictly hardware one... never thought about letting the software sort out the gutters for me.  This will work great since I can simply use the existing gutter switch to do everything and I won't have to alter a single thing on the machine.  Thank you very much for the idea!  I tried to answer all of your questions below:

1) The vinyl is doing absolutely amazing.  This thing has had a LOT of use since I first installed the vinyl and it looks brand new.  It has had plenty of random beers and drinks spilled on it and plenty of balls dropped on it and it cleans up instantly with a rag and some water.  The padding that it has built in to it helps to reduce noise too.  The fake wood may not be the prettiest looking lane but in terms of a durable and functional material I think it's perfect.
2) I clamped the vinyl down using L shaped wood molding.  This holds the vinyl perfectly in place but structurally isn't doing to well.  After getting nailed by errant Skeeballs repeatedly the wood has cracked on both the top and bottom of the ramp.  Easy and cheap to replace, but I definitely need to come up with a more permanent solution for this.
3) The netting is actually from the local Army surplus store... it works great but it's not the prettiest to look at (and originally had a creepy stiffness and film to it that made it feel like it was just used to dredge a swamp or something).  I am going to use the PVC frame for the final net, but I'm still not 100% sure how I am going to have the net connect to the frame (if that makes sense).
4) No clue, and it's a question that drives me insane when I'm at Home Depot / Lowe's / OSH.  I can't seem to find anything that is long enough for the ramp other than foam insulation strips and stuff like that, but I want a rubber / rubber-like bumper.  I'm thinking that I'll have to special order something but I haven't really done any research yet.  If you come up with anything PLEASE let me know.
5) The rings were just made out of the 4" rubber bathroom molding.  Can't remember the name, but it was the only type they had at Home Depot.  I remember the color was “Baby’s breath” only because that seems like a ridiculous name for a color.  This is another item that I couldn't be happier with.  I had originally thought that this solution would simply be "good enough", but I couldn't tell you how many people see this thing and the first thing they ask me is where I bought the actual Skeeball rings.  They get a bit dirty on the inner part that the ball rolls on but they work absolutely perfectly.
6) The material that lines the top of the sides is actually just 1/8" MDF.  I've been meaning to replace it because I goofed on the hole for the balls, but I'm going to wait until I figure out how to finish off the ends of the lanes (the "caps") before I cut anything else.
7) I moonlighted for a year or so at a sign shop, so I had access to a large format printer and vinyl plotter.  That's where I cut the numbers for the rings as well.
8 ) Yeah I'll hunt down the original SketchUp plans that I made and post them, but they aren't anything pretty.  I basically just used Sketchup to outline the sides of the machine to the correct measurements, I didn't do a super nice 3d model or anything.
9) It's been a while since I did the heavy lifting portion of the build, but off the top of my head I think I bought 3 4'x8' sheets of 3/4" MDF, 1 4'x8' sheet of 1/8" MDF, about 10  ¾”x3” planks, and a bunch of random pieces of hardware that I will try to document better in the near future.
10) I made them in two very separate pieces, and literally the only thing holding them together is gravity.  This thing is VERY f'ing heavy so actually just lining the two parts up works great... this thing doesn't move unless you really want to move it.
11) No clue.  I thought about cutting aluminum or something, but I've never done anything like that before and I wouldn't know where to start.  I have also seriously considered just purchasing used "caps" but I wouldn't know where to start to find them.  Again, if you can come up with anything please let me know.

DaOld Man – I appreciate the kind words!  Thank you.

Pinball Wizard- Haha no kidding about the drives.  While installing XP, I actually had to try 3 freakin dvd drives that I had lying around before I found one that would actually eject… guess it’s well past time to start tossing some stuff out of my extra pc parts box.  The whole screen area is actually on a hinge though so I can move it up and down to get to the guts.

Anyway, I'm going to code the gutter detection tonight so I probably won't end up finishing the wiring until tomorrow.  Again, thanks for reading!

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #111 on: December 05, 2009, 02:01:26 am »
Just finished adding the gutterball detection into the software and it appears to be working perfectly.  Just wanted to say thanks again to samej71 for the great idea.  After the Christmas lights go up tomorrow I am doing nothing but working on getting Skeeball all hooked up and drinking some beers (for testing purposes, of course).

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

Pinball Wizard

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #112 on: December 05, 2009, 03:37:26 pm »
You don't need to explain the connection with drinking beer and testing games. We all understand that.

 Do you have any intentions of releasing the software when your done so when I finally win the lottery, quit my job, and focus on these type of things I can build my own?
Where's my gold star :P

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #113 on: December 05, 2009, 08:31:33 pm »
 my god this is amazing!   Some day when I can afford to move I want to do an all new games room and I want this game! How much did it cost to make?

Is there any plans?

thanks
Jim
Life is like a video game, a good one never dies..

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #114 on: December 07, 2009, 03:05:16 pm »
WOW! I have to say I was a skeptic--- but you're current build is looking absolutely fantastic!  :cheers:
Seriously. Will it fit in my basement or what?

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #115 on: December 09, 2009, 02:31:21 pm »
Wow.   :o

That about sums it up.  AMAZING job.

We need video of this in action as soon as is humanly possible.  At which point I'll be forced to build one, and my wife will hate you. :)


thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #116 on: December 24, 2009, 12:26:36 am »
Thanks again for the very kind words everyone!  I've been super busy between work and Christmas prep, but I have been slowly chugging along with the project.  I think I am getting ever closer to a final decision for the net which involves using a rope as a border for the net and then using velcro ties to attach it around the frame.  I don't love the idea but it's all I've got so far.  I swear pics and vids are coming.

One other fairly cool thing that I will need the expertise of those far wiser than me for: I found some sweet flashing siren lights for the Skeeball machine that are USB powered.  They seem like they would be absolutely perfect for the machine and I think they SHOULD be able to be hooked up with an LEDWiz.  I say SHOULD because I really have no idea what I am doing, but from the little research I have done it seems that standard USB voltage is around 5 volts and I think (but could be wrong) that an LEDwiz is capable of that for one output.  If not, I could separate the lights and therefore distribute the power needed to two outputs.  If anyone knows how I might proceed into doing something like this I would be incredibly appreciative.  Attached are pictures of me dissecting one of them to show the guts (and a super classy beverage for scale).

Hope everyone has a great Christmas and / or Holiday Season!










So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.

anyeyeover

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #117 on: December 24, 2009, 02:46:38 am »
You are on the verge of greatness.  Truely epic.  I think I'm going to start the slow clap...

PM me if you want to put a solenoid in for a ball release.

drventure

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #118 on: December 24, 2009, 10:04:09 am »
Love those flashers! I'd be careful about hooking them directly to the LEDWiz. What you could do is use the LEDWiz output to control an opto isolator or something. Gotta be careful with relays as they're inductive loads and could damage the board.

Or, if they're usb, can the be controlled directly via USB? or do they just use USB for power?

thatpurplestuff

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Re: That's How I Roll! (Skeeball build)
« Reply #119 on: December 24, 2009, 10:26:26 am »
drventure- Thanks for the input!  If you have the time, could you expand on that "opto isolator" idea a bit?  I think I understand the basic concept that you're talking about, but I have no idea how I would go about making something like that.

So once again, we find that evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap wax paper, mixing memory and desire.