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Author Topic: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY  (Read 45166 times)

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Gamester

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Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY
« on: July 31, 2009, 02:40:15 am »




******************************************************************************
EDIT:
How it all began...
******************************************************************************
Hello All,

Let me just start by saying that I'm a (late) thirty-something guy who spent many quarters in the arcade back in the 80's.  I was absolutely intrigued by this whole "MAME" phenomenon when I was first introduced to it in the late '90s.  I played around with it on my computer some, and then put it away, deciding it was neat, but really just not the same experience as playing the games in the real arcade. 

Then a few years ago I stumbled upon a couple actual MAME-based cabinets on the internet that people had created.  I was totally amazed, and began researching how they built them.  That eventually led me to this terrific forum, where after researching more, I was hooked, and I knew that some day I would have to build a machine for myself.

For a couple years I gradually gathered a few odds and ends that I knew I would need for my cabinet.  I picked up a Happ high-lip Trackball and an over/under coin door on Ebay.  I also used an Amazon gift card I had lying around to get a Smart Strip power strip, which I had heard good things about around here.  In 2006, thinking I was ready to get started on my long-time dream project, I also had Knievel cut a control top for me.  But then, sadly, life got in the way and all of those parts sat on the shelf collecting dust for the past three years....

BUT now, after one false start, "some day" has finally arrived -- I'm going full steam ahead on building my cabinet, officially called "Arcade Galaxy." 

The basic cabinet shape will be roughly based on the long admired "Neon Mame" design that Knievel unleashed years ago.

I'm planning to use a 27" arcade monitor.  Controls will be Ultimarc U360 joys, 6 buttons per player layout (lighted buttons), spinner and an illuminated trackball.

I'll be chronicling the whole process here, so stay tuned....   ;D

******************************************************************************
« Last Edit: December 13, 2012, 02:42:38 am by Gamester »
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leapinlew

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #1 on: July 31, 2009, 02:51:11 am »
good luck

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #2 on: July 31, 2009, 02:52:29 am »
Spent last weekend working on the box for the control panel.  Used some 5/8" MDF we had conveniently lying around.

Gotta love MDF... nasty stuff.

Safety first...  ;)




This is a jig that my brother-in-law and I made to cut the angles for the sides.  Not pretty, but effective...






Woohoo, the angles all matched up...  It's hard to tell from the pictures, but the sides have a 1" slope, and the top-front and top-rear edges have a 5 degree bevel.  After lots of careful measuring and cutting (taking way longer than I care to admit), the pieces turned out perfect.






The assembled box.  We routed the outer corners and used a pocket joiner and glue for the joints.  It's very solid!


« Last Edit: July 31, 2009, 01:42:33 pm by Gamester »
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #3 on: July 31, 2009, 02:58:53 am »
My little furry companion helped me with the photo of the control panel...   ;)  Knievel cut the control panel for U360 joys, which at the time he was not familiar with.  He did a good job on the recesses, considering, and I just cleaned them up a bit using my dremel to achieve a perfect fit.  All ready for primer here...




And the perfectly matched acrylic top...




Got the primer going too.  This was after the second coat.  Have done some sanding and another coat since.  I'm hoping to do a really shiny finish like javeryh achieved on Bella's arcade.  I know it's going to take LOTS of elbow grease to get that perfect piano-like finish though...




These seams in the front are going to take some work to get perfect.  I'm almost there though...  (it looks better now than when this pic was taken)

« Last Edit: September 28, 2009, 03:33:33 pm by Gamester »
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2009, 03:09:34 am »
I also spent the past few weeks toiling over the theme for the cabinet and playing around with artwork.  Before I settled on the "Arcade Galaxy" theme, I thought I wanted to do a WWII theme  (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=94367.0).  After several iterations and much frustration with the lack of high quality *color* source images I decided to shelve that idea for now.  I may revisit it on a  future project.

Besides the reasoning above, I also found out that my wife wants to put the machine in our living room :cheers: so I wanted to do a theme that was a little classier and more gender neutral.

Here's my first shot at the new theme.  I'm not sure if I like it or not, but I think it's at least close conceptually to what I'm looking to achieve.  It looks a little busy to me in the small picture, but I'm cautiously optimistic that when it's blown up to its final size (nearly 3 feet wide), it's going to look much less so.  I tried to incorporate as many of my favorite classics as I could, without going overboard.  It was hard to draw the line and quit adding more characters, but I know the less is more approach is best. 
The general idea of the design is that the arcade characters are kind of popping out of a stylized "space portal."

Oh, and I have to throw in there that every one of the stars in the background was applied by hand to ensure that they had the suitable detail!  No blurry, blown up NASA photo backgrounds here...   ;)

I'll probably do a full size mock up later today to see how it looks and fits on the panel.

Anyway, it's a work in progress.  I'll probably change it up several times until I get something I'm happy with.

Comments and/or suggestions are certainly appreciated.
« Last Edit: July 31, 2009, 11:54:19 am by Gamester »
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Franco B

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2009, 03:54:15 am »
Its looking great so far. You seem like you are taking your time to do things right and not cutting corners which is great, you will end up with a much nicer end result if you carry on as you are.  :)

I have to say I'm not a big fan of the artwork though but if it works for you, great.


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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #6 on: July 31, 2009, 09:24:58 am »
Looking very nice!  Excluding the 6 buttons per joy, what are your plans for the top holes?
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #7 on: July 31, 2009, 10:06:44 am »
Franco B: Yeah, I plan to do this right.  I'm a bit of a perfectionist, so the only concern I have is taking too long.   ;)  Oh, and I respect your opinion about the art.  It's definitely a work in progress, and now that I've slept on it, I have some ideas for changes.  I think I may try toning down the rays a bit and removing the red highlights on the edges.  I was trying to incorporate red and blue in the art because P1 will have red transluscent buttons and P2 will have blue ones (already have the buttons).  May be a case where I was trying too hard to incorporate both colors.  Since the characters already have red in them, that's probably enough.  In hindsight, I should have completed the artwork FIRST, then selected the button color(s) to match, instead of the other way around.

Spoof:  The top holes are P1 Coin, P1 Start, Escape, Spinner, two spinner buttons, then P2 Coin, P2 Start and Pause.  The exact order for the buttons has not been finalized, but that's their functions.

Thanks for the feedback guys...
« Last Edit: July 31, 2009, 01:47:50 pm by Gamester »
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javeryh

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #8 on: July 31, 2009, 10:19:16 am »
Looking really nice so far.  I'm going to agree with Franco though about the artwork.  I'm not a big fan of character art unless it is created specifically for a cabinet (in which case I love it).  You are going to spend countless hours building this thing - just be sure of what you want before committing because the nicest cab in the world can easily be spoiled by bad art.

I'm hoping to do a really shiny finish like javeryh achieved on Bella's arcade.  I know it's going to take LOTS of elbow grease to get that perfect piano-like finish though...

I'll be happy to help out if I can.  It takes a lot of work but if you are patient you can get great results.  It was the first time I ever tried a finish like that (and probably the last).  I had no idea what I was doing but following THIS GUY really helped.

Good luck!   :cheers:

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #9 on: July 31, 2009, 11:02:10 am »
javeryh:  Thanks.  I appreciate the feedback on the art, and I agree 100% that bad art can ruin the best of projects.  That's why I've already spent weeks messing around with the art, and I'll spend as much time as I need to get it right.  No rush jobs here...

I have a couple ideas for the art that don't include the characters, so I'll post my revisions as I generate them. 

I respect all of your opinions greatly, and you guys will no doubt have an influence on the final result, but I'll probably rely even more on my wife and kids' opinions since they all will have to look at it every day...  ;)

More to come.

Thanks again...
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #10 on: July 31, 2009, 02:11:57 pm »
I like the artwork for the cp. What's wrong with the characters, I mean aren't the characters what this is all about? Maybe do some tweaking on the rays...try to make the red in them glow more or something. Other than that, I just don't know.
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #11 on: July 31, 2009, 08:35:14 pm »
Okay, so here's another try on the artwork.  I toned down the light rays, added a bit more glow to the characters, muted the color inside the control areas, and added a similar glow around the control areas to give it a more cohesive look.  Also fine tuned the positioning of the characters a bit.

I definitely like this one better than the last, but I'm going to keep tweaking.

I'm including the previous version in this post too, for easier comparison.

Let me know what you think...

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #12 on: July 31, 2009, 08:47:10 pm »
I was waiting for your second go at it before commenting.  The second version is better, here's how I'd improve it further.  Lower the highlight in the background to be directly behind the characters, not in the middle...the highlight makes a second focus point in the image...marry the two togther,  I'd also increase the contrast on the dithering to the edges so that the edges  especially the top are darker, or at least darken the back/top edge of the CP.  If the characters are going to be the focus, then make them really pop - even make the central characters larger - lift them up a bit.  If was playing with the image I'd fade the milky way parts a little s well, a subtle but interesting background will strengthen your theme..not distract from it.  Ok that's my two cents worth...I've really got to get into the garage and make somthing..must...stop...reading...forum...arrrrrgggggg    :lol

Gamester

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #13 on: July 31, 2009, 09:35:56 pm »
Ond:  Thanks a lot for the input.  You make very good points, and I will definitely give some of those changes a try.  The only thing I'm struggling with a little -- and the reason the center of the image also has a glow -- is that the trackball will be RGB illuminated, so besides being an obvious light source, it will also be a focal point for the panel.  I thought it made sense for such a substantial light source to cast a glow around itself. 

I haven't really figured out a good way to make the trackball an integral element in the artwork (or if I should even try).

Thoughts?
« Last Edit: July 31, 2009, 10:25:00 pm by Gamester »
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #14 on: July 31, 2009, 10:47:00 pm »
I haven't really figured out a good way to make the trackball an integral element in the artwork (or if I should even try).

Thoughts?

Maybe have the rays come from the trackball?

Gamester

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #15 on: August 01, 2009, 11:55:21 pm »
Christmas in July...   ;D  (well it was still July when it arrived anyway...)



So, the control panel will consist of the following items pictured:

- 2 Ultimarc Ultrastik 360 balltops
- 2 "Hard" springs for the Ultrastiks
- Ultimarc IPAC2
- GGG LED Wiz
- 7 Blue LED lighted NovaGem Pushbuttons with MicroLeaf switches  (Player 1 & Spinner)
- 7 Red LED lighted NovaGem Pushbuttons with MicroLeaf switches (Player 2 & Spinner)
- 6 Clear LED lighted NovaGem Pushbuttons with "regular" microswitches  (Coins, Starts & Admin Buttons)
- 4 Black pushbuttons (pinball buttons for the sides of the CP)
- GGG Electric Ice translucent ball
- RGB LED trackball light
- Two GGG NovaMatrix LED Marquee Lights
- GGG TurboTwist 2 Spinner with "Premium" spinner knob
- GGG Harness to connect the Happ trackball to the TT2 spinner controller board
- Button Wrench
- Happ trackball mounting plate

Gotta say, all this definitely left a void in the wallet, but I know when I see it all installed and lit up like Clark Griswold's house in Christmas Vacation, it will be so worth it.  Hopefully I won't have as much trouble getting mine lit up as he did...   :laugh2:
« Last Edit: August 02, 2009, 01:36:26 am by Gamester »
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #16 on: August 02, 2009, 12:12:31 am »
Here's my coin door.  Overall it's in pretty nice shape, but I'm picky, so I think I'm probably going to end up stripping it and refinishing it.  It also needs new coin drop inserts  (they don't match)...

« Last Edit: August 02, 2009, 12:14:40 am by Gamester »
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #17 on: August 02, 2009, 12:52:35 am »
Just a few closeups for posterity.  I'm sure they've been posted on the forum many times before, but what the heck...


The Ultimarc IPAC2 controller.  No frills, but it's the heart of the control panel.




And here's the brains for the "bling"...




And the TurboTwist2 Spinner.  This thing really has a nice quality feel to it.  Very smooth and feels very solid in construction.  I got the premium spinner knob, but elected to delete the BYOAC token on the top.  I have some other plans for that spot, which I haven't finalized yet.




The RGB light for the trackball.  Can't wait to see that baby lit up!




These are the inserts for the coin, start & admin buttons from Groovy Game Gear.  They should look great lit from behind, and I like the fact that there's NO way they will wear since they are actually installed inside the buttons.




And this is one of the clear NovaGem buttons.  The button inserts above will be installed inside them...



That's all for now...
« Last Edit: August 02, 2009, 12:56:26 am by Gamester »
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #18 on: August 02, 2009, 10:51:16 am »
every thing is lookin great!

where did you get that trackall light?


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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #19 on: August 02, 2009, 11:22:36 am »
every thing is lookin great!

where did you get that trackall light?

Thanks Bender!  I got the trackball light from Groovy Game Gear.  It's part of his Electric Ice trackball lighting upgrade kit (http://groovygamegear.com/webstore/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=74&products_id=273 )

Boy, maybe I should be hitting up RandyT for a commission check for all the press he's getting in my project thread!   :P
« Last Edit: August 02, 2009, 01:30:26 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #20 on: August 04, 2009, 12:02:47 am »
Okay, here's another shot at the CPO artwork.  I decided to take a different angle with the characters, and place the focus on just a couple.

I still want to integrate characters from other games into the theme -- I don't want this to be just a Dragon's Lair cab --  but I will probably do that on the marquee art.

Let me know what you guys think...
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #21 on: August 04, 2009, 01:12:57 am »
Thanks Bender!  I got the trackball light from Groovy Game Gear.  It's part of his Electric Ice trackball lighting upgrade kit (http://groovygamegear.com/webstore/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=74&products_id=273 )

Boy, maybe I should be hitting up RandyT for a commission check for all the press he's getting in my project thread!   :P
Dang... I wish they sold just the LED kit seperately. a superwhite LED would be nice to light up my translucent blue trackball rather than the hot bulb.

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #22 on: August 04, 2009, 01:30:29 pm »
Gamester,

I really like this round of CP art drafts.
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #23 on: August 04, 2009, 01:56:49 pm »
Gamester,

I really like this round of CP art drafts.

Agreed  :applaud:

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #24 on: August 04, 2009, 05:00:35 pm »
Dang... I wish they sold just the LED kit seperately. a superwhite LED would be nice to light up my translucent blue trackball rather than the hot bulb.

jholman76:  Some have successfully used these for the trackball:  http://www.glowire.com/Lazer%20LEDs.htm

Look at the "4 LED Cluster LEDs" about half way down...

The arcade paradise site talks about it here: http://www.arcadeparadise.org/arcade/ap3/lighting.html
« Last Edit: August 04, 2009, 05:04:56 pm by Gamester »
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #25 on: August 04, 2009, 11:58:52 pm »
jholman76:  Some have successfully used these for the trackball:  http://www.glowire.com/Lazer%20LEDs.htm

Look at the "4 LED Cluster LEDs" about half way down...

The arcade paradise site talks about it here: http://www.arcadeparadise.org/arcade/ap3/lighting.html

Wow, good to see there is another option. Thanks!

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #26 on: August 05, 2009, 09:32:38 am »
I also think the artwork is improving but is there any way you can have the rays in the background appear as though they are coming out of the trackball hole?  My mind's eye keeps being drawn to the where the rays would come together and then there is a point directly above there (the trackball hole) which throws everything off...  just a thought.   :cheers:

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #27 on: August 05, 2009, 05:36:45 pm »
I also think the artwork is improving but is there any way you can have the rays in the background appear as though they are coming out of the trackball hole?  My mind's eye keeps being drawn to the where the rays would come together and then there is a point directly above there (the trackball hole) which throws everything off...  just a thought.   :cheers:

+1

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #28 on: August 05, 2009, 10:41:18 pm »
I also think the artwork is improving but is there any way you can have the rays in the background appear as though they are coming out of the trackball hole?  My mind's eye keeps being drawn to the where the rays would come together and then there is a point directly above there (the trackball hole) which throws everything off...  just a thought.   :cheers:

Point taken, and I agree.  Here's what is *hopefully* the final revision.  I moved the rays so they originate behind the trackball, fixed a gap that was showing on the dragon's stomach, added a slight glow to its eyes to make it look a bit more sinister, and added a bit of an easter egg to the image.

I'm planning to print out a mockup tomorrow to see how everything looks at full size, and to make sure everything lines up with the CP the way it should.  If it checks out, I'm probably going to move forward.  I could probably analyze and tweak the thing 'til I'm blue in the face.  At some point I've got to draw the line and say it's good enough.  So far everyone I've shown the most recent version to really liked it, so that's encouraging.

Thanks for all the feedback guys...
« Last Edit: August 05, 2009, 10:54:03 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #29 on: August 06, 2009, 12:39:06 pm »
Looks GREAT!   :cheers:

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #30 on: August 06, 2009, 12:45:51 pm »
Ya, much better with the rays emanating from the trackball :)
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #31 on: August 07, 2009, 10:39:21 pm »
Looks GREAT!   :cheers:

Thanks for the compliments.

So I learned something during this process...  the printed art NEVER looks as bright and vivid as it does on the computer screen.  When I printed the mock up of what I thought would be the final revision (above), it turned out too muted, and all of the stars behind the light rays were way too obscured.  Once I brightened some things up and moved the star layer forward, it turned out really nice.  What looked too bright and busy on the computer screen actually looked fantastic when printed.

The moral of the story is that you cannot accurately judge CPO art by looking at it on the computer screen alone.  What may look too bright or busy on a relatively small screen may look much different at 3 feet wide.  If you have the means, print out a mockup and see what it looks like at full size.  If I had not done so, and tweaked things along the way, I'm certain I would be disappointed with the final printed overlay.
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #32 on: August 07, 2009, 10:42:18 pm »
Also, for anyone who might be curious as to exactly how I did the art mockups, I basically generated an PDF file from Photoshop, and actually printed it from Acrobat.  The full version of Acrobat has a feature that allows one to print an oversized image in "tiles" so that it can be printed on normal paper and then assembled afterward.  I know Acrobat is not the only software that has this ability, but since I already had it, that's what I used.

I basically just cut off any excess and taped the pieces together from behind.  Worked great and was really helpful in not only seeing what the image looked like at full size, but also for verifying the alignment of the CPO elements with the actual control panel.  I was fortunate enough to have a printer that does 11x17 prints, so it only took me 6 sheets to do, but the principal is obviously the same no matter what size paper you use.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2009, 10:45:31 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #33 on: August 13, 2009, 10:15:50 pm »
Well, been undertaking the not so fun task of painting and sanding on the control panel top and box.  Luckily the top doesn't have to be perfect since nobody will see it...   :)  For painting, I ran some really long screws half way through the joystick mounting holes so that it would be elevated off the table surface.  This allowed me to flip it over while the paint was still wet, without having to worry about anything touching it.




The box on the other hand is definitely an exercise in patience, since I want it to have a nice smooth finish.  Nothing more depressing than taking a shiny, freshly painted surface and completely wrecking it with a sander.  Evening things out took some small areas back down to the primer.  Always feels like taking a big step backward, but I know it's a necessary evil, and the final finish will be much better for it.  Just not a very fun process right now...

« Last Edit: August 13, 2009, 11:06:00 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #34 on: August 13, 2009, 10:29:19 pm »
Received a package today... the printed overlay!  I'm happy to report, it turned out beautiful!  The attached picture certainly does not do it justice. 

Cutting the button and trackball holes out of this thing is going to be nerve-wracking! 

Anyway, hoping to start assembling the control panel this weekend...
« Last Edit: August 13, 2009, 11:56:55 pm by Gamester »
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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #35 on: August 14, 2009, 12:31:41 am »
Thanks Bender!  I got the trackball light from Groovy Game Gear.  It's part of his Electric Ice trackball lighting upgrade kit (http://groovygamegear.com/webstore/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=74&products_id=273 )

Boy, maybe I should be hitting up RandyT for a commission check for all the press he's getting in my project thread!   :P
Dang... I wish they sold just the LED kit seperately. a superwhite LED would be nice to light up my translucent blue trackball rather than the hot bulb.

Not to hijack, but there is an option.  I forget the name, but I have one with a blue LED for my blue trackball. Was under $10.

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #36 on: August 14, 2009, 10:08:56 am »
i know what you feel like when you got to sand your paint down to get it smooth.nothing looks worse than a cab or cp that looks like its just been sprayed or painted.to get something special takes time,patience and work as you know yourself.

hell,i am still on my cab after weeks,enamel paint and i am wet sanding.

the trick i found is to get a couple layers on,then sand with wet and dry,get it smooth,even if you see primer,then get a couple more coats and repeat.

hoping eventualy it wont sand down to the primer.

just gotta be carefull not to think about putting too many layers of paint on cos if you do and theres roller marks etc,you wont be able to get them out without sanding down,so each layer needs a delicate sand down to get rid of blemishs if they exist.

good luck.
 :)

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #37 on: August 19, 2009, 01:41:54 am »
Been working on the control panel on and off for the past few days.  I got the CP art overlay cut out without incident.  The approach I took was to sandwich the overlay between the CP and the acrylic, adjust it to the correct position, then choose one of the far left button holes and carefully cut it out.  As soon as that hole was complete, I simply stuffed a button into it so the rest of the CPO couldn't move laterally.  I then moved to one of the top left admin buttons, which then locked everything into place so it could not pivot either direction.  I then just carefully worked my way from left to right cutting out holes and stuffing buttons in them to maintain correct alignment.  Worked like a champ.

Also had the task of replacing the springs on the U360s (I ordered the optional "hard" springs).  Was slightly intimidating at first, but once I got it pulled apart, I was amazed at how simple the device really is, and reassembly was a snap.

Also, since I'm top mounting the U360s, I had to countersink the mounting holes so the screws would be flush.  Had to hunt around for a countersink bit that could be used on steel, but once I found one, I made quick work of it.





For mounting the joys, I got some 1 1/4" 8-32 flat top machine screws and attached them on the other side of the CP with flat washers, lock washers and nuts.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2009, 03:34:38 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #38 on: August 19, 2009, 01:57:19 am »
Painting the CP box has been on hold for the past few days, but I made some progress on the panel.  Got the buttons, joys, spinner and trackball mounted.  I had an unfortunate problem with the GGG Electric Ice ball...  For some reason it would not roll smoothly in the Happ Trackball housing.  At first I suspected that I might have tightened the screws too much, causing it to bind, but alas, it happens even if I completely remove the screws.  Works just fine with the original ball, so I reinstalled it for now, and have sent RandyT a note to see what he makes of it.

Overall I'm pretty pleased with how it's coming together.  Need to start wiring now.
« Last Edit: August 19, 2009, 02:30:28 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #39 on: August 19, 2009, 02:26:12 am »
Thats a good looking control panel, makes me want to put it in a cheerleader uniform &...................nevermind.
"George Bush doesn't care about arcade people"

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #40 on: August 19, 2009, 05:49:39 am »
jholman76:  Some have successfully used these for the trackball:  http://www.glowire.com/Lazer%20LEDs.htm

Look at the "4 LED Cluster LEDs" about half way down...

The arcade paradise site talks about it here: http://www.arcadeparadise.org/arcade/ap3/lighting.html

Wow, good to see there is another option. Thanks!

jholman76,

This is what I used on my trackball. It has a small pot on it so you can adjust the brightness and it's fairly inexpensive.

http://www.nicemite.com/LightmiteTB/LightmiteTB.htm

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #41 on: August 19, 2009, 10:38:45 am »
Thats a good looking control panel, makes me want to put it in a cheerleader uniform &...................nevermind.

Wow, I don't even know how to respond to that one...  :)

So, anyone know where I can get some brushed steel/aluminum balls or bats for the joys?  I'm not crazy about the red ones, and I think it would be nice to have a compliment for the spinner.  Also, I'm as patriotic as the next guy, but there's a little too much red/white/blue going on for my taste... especially since I had to put the original white ball back in (for now).
« Last Edit: August 19, 2009, 11:33:36 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #42 on: August 19, 2009, 01:34:18 pm »
Wow, that CP turned out really nice!  :cheers:
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #43 on: August 20, 2009, 07:47:01 am »
Wow - your CP is absolutely stunning.  The art looks even better now that everything is assembled.   :cheers:

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #44 on: August 20, 2009, 10:59:27 am »
Epyx & javeryh:  Thank you for the compliments. 

I must say it's extremely rewarding to go from design concept to reality and actually have it turn out as good or better than hoped.  It's always nice to receive affirmation from others too... helps the motivation aspect of the process.  :)

Got a lot of work left to do, but I'm pleased with how the process has gone thus far, and I'm definitely learning a lot.  It's amazing the variety of different skills that are required to build one of these things!
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #45 on: August 20, 2009, 11:38:09 am »
btw Gamester...what colour T Moulding you going with on the CP?
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #46 on: August 20, 2009, 05:13:09 pm »
btw Gamester...what colour T Moulding you going with on the CP?

I haven't made my final decision yet, but I'm debating between blue and chrome.  I think the chrome would probably look classy and the blue would have more visual impact and be more "arcadey."

Decisions, decisions...  :)
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #47 on: August 20, 2009, 05:18:46 pm »
Ah...well if you end up with the brushed/aluminum then the chrome might look really good...if not the blue will look great as well.
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #48 on: August 20, 2009, 06:21:40 pm »
Nice job there! :afro:

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #49 on: August 21, 2009, 04:15:25 pm »
@thatitalian - Thanks for the compliment.

So, another small update...  I got my monitor ordered today.  Finally decided to go with the Wells Gardner D9800.  I must say that this was by far the most difficult decision in this process. 

Though the size and weight benefits of LCD were enticing, the display quality pretty much eliminated that technology from contention for me.  I also strongly considered Nieman Displays' digital multisync, but from what Rick told me, the tubes they're having to use these days really don't do XGA (1024x768) very well.  I wasn't going  to spend that kind of money on a monitor that pretty much only does VGA/SVGA. 

I read too many complaints of geometry issues with the Betson multisync, plus I prefer flat over rounded screens, so that model was out of the running.

So, the final decision was between the D9800 and the Makvision high resolution.  The problem is, I really could not find any direct comparisons between the Makvision and a monitor that supports native arcade resolutions (WG, Betson, etc.).  Most of the people that I found that had the Makvision had never owned an arcade monitor before.  They all reported being pleased with their choice, but I still had some lingering doubt as to whether I would be satisfied.  I was concerned that since the display would run high res and rescale the image, that the result would not look authentic enough for my taste.

I have concerns about the long term reliability of the WG, and the fact that CRT's are a quickly dying breed (will parts even be readily available for these things in 5 years??), but in the end, the deciding factor boiled down to the fact that I KNOW what these games used to look like at their native resolution on an arcade monitor, and the D9800 is going to be the closest I get to that experience.  If I was a wealthy man, I would buy one of each just so I could do a direct comparison for the sake of posterity.  Having such information certainly would have helped me immensely.

Anyway, no turning back now.  I'm sure I'll be happy with my choice... I think...    :dizzy:
« Last Edit: August 21, 2009, 04:31:14 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #50 on: August 22, 2009, 12:30:30 am »
lovin that cpo! wow
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #51 on: August 22, 2009, 01:00:54 am »
I have the WG D9800 and have been more than happy with it till now...mind you its only been a few months so long term...will just have to wait and see...don't forget to use the Tri Sync utility if you get the Arcadevga so you can get non-interlaced 800x600 and 640x480.
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #52 on: September 07, 2009, 01:17:57 pm »
Well, haven't posted in a while, but it's not for lack of progress!  I've had my nose to the grindstone and have been working on a variety of different things.

Let's see, where to begin?  First, as I mentioned in a previous post, I was having problems with the GGG Electric Ice ball "sticking" in my Happ trackball enclosure (i.e. it wasn't rolling smoothly).  I was determined to make this ball work, because it's just so cool, so, after talking with RandyT, I decided to try putting thin spacers between the two halves of the enclosure.  Just cut up an old credit card, which turned out to be just the right thickness and inserted them where all the screws are.  The ball rolls smoothly now -- though still not quite as smooth as the original ball.  Not a very sexy solution, but effective nonetheless...




I also worked on getting the LEDs and LEDWiz all wired up.  It was a bit intimidating at first, but once I got into a rythm, it wasn't bad at all.  One of the most time consuming (and important) aspects of the process is determining the placement of the various boards and the direction things should face so that all of the wires reach their respective connections AND it all looks relatively neat and tidy at the end.

Here's what it started out like...




And the finished LED wiring... 




That white terminal block at the top connects the "power" wires for all of the LEDs together.  I basically made small jumper wires that go between each terminal so they're all connected as a single circuit, then a 5v power source was connected to the end terminal, providing power for all of the LEDs.  There are other ways to do it, but this seems to be the cleanest method.  Still need to put an inline fuse on the power wire.




What'ya know...  it all worked the first time!






My WG D9800 monitor also arrived in perfect condition (thank you FedEx!).  I felt sorry for the poor lady that had to haul that 100LB behemoth up the relatively steep incline to my front porch.  I offered to help, but she kindly refused.   :)



The OSD functions, for anyone that might be interested...




I also purchased the bezel that Xgaming offers for the D9800.  I had heard of others having problems with the bezels from Happ not fitting the D9800.




Been working on the computer to run the whole thing too.  I basically cobbled together a bunch of parts I had lying around and came up with this:

- AMD Athlon XP3200+ (2.2GHz)
- Asus A7V880 Motherboard
- 1GB Corsair PC3200 RAM
- ATI X1650 Pro AGP Video Card (256MB)
- 160GB HD
- 450W Antec TruePower PSU
- Sony CD/DVD Drive

Certainly not a cutting edge system by any means, but I'm hoping it will run everything I need it to.  Worst case, if I'm not happy with it, I can upgrade it to something much faster for around $200.

I chose to use an ATI card because my understanding is that they are generally more compatible with sailorsat's Soft15KHz utility, which enables "normal" video cards to output the native arcade resolutions.  This utility is only needed if you have an arcade monitor though.

I initially considered mounting all of the components directly inside the cabinet, but after thinking about it decided that I liked the idea of being able to easily remove the whole system for cleaning and repairs.  So, I took an old case and stripped it down to the frame, then mounted everything.






For the OS, I used NLite to make a custom XP install CD with all of the unneeded "junk" stripped out.  It worked nicely, and I haven't put a stop watch to it, but even on this modest system I'm guessing it boots up in around 15 seconds or less.

Once I got the OS loaded, I started focusing on software.  Loaded Soft15Khz, LEDBlinky, RomCenter, RomLister and a whole host of other utilities I can't even remember at the moment...   :dizzy:  Also started working on getting my FE (Hyperspin) set up.  I spent 3 days downloading the EMUMovies (over 40GB!).  Still need to download the Themes.

I've decided that the software aspect of this process is by far the most complicated.  There's just SOOO many different components and various tasks required to get everything working right.

I couldn't stand the suspense any more, so I hooked up the monitor to take a quick peek and see how things look.  Looking great so far!






And finally, I went and purchased the plywood yesterday.  Decided on 3/4" cabinet grade birch plywood (3 sheets).  Man, this stuff is heavy!  I can't even imagine using MDF...   :o

Of course, every good project is an excuse to buy more tools...  So I picked up one of these too...   ;D



Nothing fancy, but it should do the job, and was a pretty good deal for $119.  It's 2HP, variable speed, fixed base and plunge, 1/4" and 1/2" collets, and has some pretty LED lights built in.   :P

Now I need to start building the cabinet and wire up the buttons/IPAC.

Anyway, that's all for now.  Stay tuned...
« Last Edit: September 12, 2009, 01:08:14 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/7/09 - BIG Update]
« Reply #53 on: September 08, 2009, 09:36:32 pm »
BTW, where did you get your control panel artwork printed at? I think the fan favorite is Mamemarques, but they are pricey!

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/7/09 - BIG Update]
« Reply #54 on: September 08, 2009, 11:12:07 pm »
BTW, where did you get your control panel artwork printed at? I think the fan favorite is Mamemarques, but they are pricey!

kronic24601,

I actually had it printed at place called Fullsizeposters.com.  They printed it on 200 year archival quality satin photo paper with archival ink.  Ordering was easy on their website, their service was great, and the 37x18" image was only $28, shipped to my door.

I've never purchased anything from Mamemarquees, so I can't make a direct comparison, but I was very pleased with the purchase... especially for the price.
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/7/09 - BIG Update]
« Reply #55 on: September 09, 2009, 12:26:18 pm »
Looking good Gamester!

Curious, would you be able to measure the width of the X-Gaming bezel for me? I never ordered one for my first cab but am thinking of getting one for the 2nd and would limit the dimensions of the cab to the bezel width.

Only if you have time! :)
« Last Edit: March 09, 2010, 06:08:30 pm by Epyx »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/7/09 - BIG Update]
« Reply #56 on: September 09, 2009, 06:36:47 pm »
Curious, would you be able to measure the width of the X-Gaming marquee for me?

Epyx,

You said marquee, but I assume you're referring to the monitor bezel.  The dimensions for that are W-26 5/16" x H-29 1/4"
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Gamester

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/7/09 - BIG Update]
« Reply #57 on: September 09, 2009, 07:03:37 pm »
Spent Monday evening laying out the cabinet side designs on graph paper.  The design is very similar to rdowney's Arcade Odyssey, with a couple minor modifications.  I shortened the monitor area a little bit (his seemed to have a little too much space at the top of the monitor for my taste), and I extended out the marquee a little further.

Sorry, no fancy 3D renders here...   :)



Started on the cabinet construction yesterday.  Basically just plotted out the dimensions onto the plywood using the graph paper drawing as a reference.  I then used a metal guide clamped to the wood to help keep my cuts nice and straight.  However, I had to be careful not to push the saw up against the guide with too much force toward the middle or it had a tendency to flex slightly -- 8ft is a long span for something that's only clamped on the ends.  Worked pretty good for the most part though, and certainly better than I could have done freehand.

To support the wood while I was cutting it, I simply placed 2x4s on their edges strategically underneath so that as the cuts were made I didn't have to worry about parts of the wood sagging, or worse falling while I was cutting.  I considered using saw horses at first, but it just didn't seem like a very stable way to do it.



First side finished...




To make the second side, I used the tried and true method of drawing the outline on side2 using the first side as a template, cutting side2 with the jigsaw within about 1/8" or so of the line, clamping the sides together, then tracing around with a pattern bit on the router so they are perfectly matched.

I have to fess up that I made the rookie mistake of routing the wrong direction at first (these bits are definitely directional), and I couldn't figure out why the router kept trying to take off on me.  A slap of the forehead later, I realized my mistake.  Worked much better when I actually did the cutting from left to right as the bit was designed to work.   :P

In my haste to get the sides done before dark, I later realized I missed rounding a couple of the corners that I intended to round, so I'll have to go back and do those.

Here's what I've got so far...



Probably will try to work on those corners and getting the T-molding slots cut tomorrow...
« Last Edit: September 12, 2009, 12:39:33 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #58 on: September 09, 2009, 07:13:44 pm »
Quote
You said marquee, but I assume you're referring to the monitor bezel.  The dimensions for that are W-26 5/16" x H-29 1/4"

Doh! I was indeed. Thanks much  :cheers:
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #59 on: September 10, 2009, 03:19:09 pm »
I love your CP art!
How did you do the oval outlines around the button groupings and outline around the CP edge?  I have been looking for a template to do that type of CP art but no luck, and I am not sure how to create shapes like that in Photoshop.
Any tips on how you did that?

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #60 on: September 10, 2009, 08:46:36 pm »
@FlatEarth - Thanks for the compliment!

One of the forum members actually did a small tutorial on making the outlines around the controls.  You can find it here: http://www.knievelkustoms.com/tipstricks.htm

Good luck!
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #61 on: September 10, 2009, 09:09:26 pm »
Gotta say, i'm liking this, looks very clean thus far
how on earth could you stand to make the cp wiring that clean though?
it took me about 3 hours to do mine, and it looks like -expletive deleted-

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #62 on: September 10, 2009, 09:53:02 pm »
that panel is absolutely GORGEOUS man.

you available for hire?  :)

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #63 on: September 10, 2009, 10:16:22 pm »
@FlatEarth - Thanks for the compliment!

One of the forum members actually did a small tutorial on making the outlines around the controls.  You can find it here: http://www.knievelkustoms.com/tipstricks.htm

Good luck!
That is exactly what I was looking for! Thanks!!

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #64 on: September 11, 2009, 12:12:34 pm »
First off, excellent work.  I really like what you have done with you CP and I have been watching this thread closely because I think I will be setting up my CP in the same layout(except I think i will go with the 7 button config per player).  Thanks for documenting everything so well as it is really helping me get the gears turning.

to the questions....

Looks like you wired the track ball to your TT2 spinner is that right?  I also will have a spinner and a track ball so I figured I would need the ultimarc mini-pac so I can control all the buttons, track ball and spinner.  I see you only have the I-pac2 and no Opti-pac so the TT2 is controlling the spinner and trackball together?

Why did you go with this gem buttons instead of the ice buttons from GGG?  They are more expensive but looks like they lack the ability to use the RGB board for the extra effects via the LED-Wiz.  Am I missing something?

I see that you got the GGG ICE track ball but you are using a HAPP track ball unit.  Why?  I just figured I would get the full GGG ICE trackball setup that comes with everything.  Again am I missing something?

if you get a chance to answer my questions i would be very thankful... no hurry as I will not be making any quick moves. 

again great work!

Nate

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #65 on: September 11, 2009, 01:10:42 pm »
@bartre - Thanks for the compliment -- I'm glad you like it.  As far as the wiring, it is a bit of a pain to get it neat like that, but I guess I'm just a bit of a perfectionist, so it's worth the effort to me.  :)

@tony.silveira - Thank you for the kind words.  When you work so hard on something, it's definitely nice to have others that appreciate the result.  As far as being for hire, I wish I had the time!  With a full time job, wife and 4 kids at home, I'm lucky to find time for my own project these days, lol.

@FlatEarth - You're welcome... Any time man!
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #66 on: September 11, 2009, 01:19:19 pm »
Quote
With a full time job, wife and 4 kids at home

Hat's off to you for having ANY time at all lol...It was difficult at times with 1 child...I can only imagine 4...
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #67 on: September 11, 2009, 01:30:43 pm »
First off, excellent work. I really like what you have done with you CP and I have been watching this thread closely because I think I will be setting up my CP in the same layout(except I think i will go with the 7 button config per player).  Thanks for documenting everything so well as it is really helping me get the gears turning.

n88n, thanks for the compliment.  I got SOOO much valuable information off this forum over the years in preparation for my project, I really felt like I wanted to try to give back as much as I can so others can benefit from my experiences (including my mistakes). 

I know some of the stuff I'm posting is probably considered "common knowledge" to a lot of folks around here, but I didn't want to make any assumptions about the skill level or knowledge level of the readers, nor did I want to take the attitude that everyone should read through dozens of different threads to figure out some of this stuff, so I'm erring on the side of documenting too much when I can... obviously balanced by the amount of time I actually have available to write the posts.  :)  (EDIT: holy *elf-poo* that was a long sentence...   :P )

Looks like you wired the track ball to your TT2 spinner is that right?

Yes, though I actually don't have it wired yet, the TT2 spinner controller board does also have the ability to connect to a trackball, therefore the IPAC2 was the only other board I needed.

Why did you go with this gem buttons instead of the ice buttons from GGG?  They are more expensive but looks like they lack the ability to use the RGB board for the extra effects via the LED-Wiz.  Am I missing something?

There were a couple reasons I chose the NovaGems.  First, I really just like the look of the translucent buttons as opposed to the milky white EI buttons.  The EI's look great when they're lit, but I also wanted the buttons to look nice even if the cab is not powered on.  To me, the colored translucents just look nicer and more "polished" than the white EI's when they're not lit up.  It's purely an opinion thing.

Secondly, I really didn't care about having the ability to change the color of the player buttons.  For those, one color was fine for me.  I have the trackball to do all the crazy color changing stuff if I want to.  I guess you could say I leaned a little toward the less-is-more approach in that respect.

I see that you got the GGG ICE track ball but you are using a HAPP track ball unit.  Why?  I just figured I would get the full GGG ICE trackball setup that comes with everything.  Again am I missing something?

It really just boils down to the fact that back when I purchased my trackball, I don't think the GGG Electric Ice TB even existed.  And since I also got my control panel cut to fit the trackball way back then, I was pretty much committed to the Happ.  I've read plenty of good things about the trackballs from both GGG and Ultimarc, and were I purchasing one now, I would probably just go with one of those.  I doubt you could go wrong with either of them.

Good luck!
« Last Edit: September 12, 2009, 12:27:46 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #68 on: September 11, 2009, 04:10:45 pm »
Thanks for answering my questions i appreciate it!  :cheers:

I see you are using the u360s and I think I will be doing the same.  Looks like you are also using Hyperspin for your FE.  Does hyperspin support automatically sending down the u360 maps based on the games selected?  It seems like MALA does but I can not find an answer on whether or not Hyperspin does.

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #69 on: September 11, 2009, 05:13:31 pm »
Does hyperspin support automatically sending down the u360 maps based on the games selected?  It seems like MALA does but I can not find an answer on whether or not Hyperspin does.

Though I haven't tried configuring it yet, my understanding is that the LEDBlinky plugin by arzoo, which is supported by Hyperspin, actually can handle the switching of the u360 maps.
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #70 on: September 11, 2009, 05:34:59 pm »
cool.  i am still trying to figure out the FE thing and I am looking at Hyperspin, MALA and Maximus Arcade. 

anyway, thanks again for your help and I will stop cluttering up your thread with my questions.

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/9/09 - Wood Cutting Starts]
« Reply #71 on: September 12, 2009, 03:18:58 pm »
Very Cool Project!  :afro:

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY" [9/22/09 - Sound System Parts]
« Reply #72 on: September 22, 2009, 09:40:28 pm »
@Shortbus - Thanks!


So here's the current status:

Unfortunately, the combination of a bad head cold and relentless rain in my area served to be a bit of a progress stopper the past two weeks.  But, I'm healthy again, and the weather forecast seems to be looking up, so I'm hoping to jump back into the cabinet construction again over the next few days.

But, where I lacked actual progress on construction, I made up for somewhat in parts acquisition.  I pretty much have my sound system nailed down now...

I dug an amp out of storage that I've been holding on to for 20 years!  The thing was unused in the its original packaging, and I've been keeping it all this time thinking I'd use it in a car some day.  Well, obviously that never happened, but I now have a great purpose for it!  I haven't decided if I'm going to run it off the existing power supply, or if I want to add a second dedicated PS just for the amp.  The amp is 25W per channel, and I'm only planning to use 2 channels, so I dunno.  Something to ponder.  My instincts tell me it would be best to dedicate a separate power supply for it though...




And here's my subwoofer.  Bought this long ago to use on my computer.  This thing's been sitting on a shelf for 10 years.  I suspect it will work nicely in the cab.  Sometimes it pays to hold on to old junk.   :P




Also ordered a pair of these, which should be arriving this week.  They're Infinity 5022i's which are 5.25" diameter.  They seem to have received pretty good reviews everywhere I looked, and for $50 it's pretty hard to go wrong.  I'm planning to do some homemade shielding for them to mitigate any possible interference with my monitor.




And finally, I have a couple of these, which I'm planning to use on the sides of the cabinet.  They're ~12" diameter.  I liked the multicolor effect.  I have a little bit of a twist planned for them though, which I won't reveal just yet...

« Last Edit: September 23, 2009, 11:27:47 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [9-27-09 - Cabinet Construction Continues]
« Reply #73 on: September 27, 2009, 10:32:46 pm »
Got back to work on the cabinet this weekend.  I cut the T-Molding slot and started working on the base.  Building one of these cabinets feels like a chess match at times in that you always have to think several moves ahead when you're assembling.  For example, I initially had planned to build the base with the 2x4s set vertically (i.e. taller), but when I started thinking about it, I realized that doing so would not leave enough room for the coin door to install in the proper location (it would have been too high).  I had already cut and screwed the frame pieces together when I came to this realization, so I had to pull them back apart -- thank goodness I hadn't glued them.

I decided to assemble the base with the 2x4s laying flat, which not only freed up some space vertically , but also added the benefit of a more solid surface for mounting the wheels.  As for the wheels, the ones I chose are 2.5" diameter and had a weight rating of 175lbs each.  Should be beefy enough I would think, but I'm still a little skeptical about how well this thing is going to roll when fully assembled.  Guess time will tell.

Here's a few shots of the process...




I didn't have any clamps wide enough to hold the frame together and flush, so I improvised a bit.  I basically screwed a strip of wood to each corner to keep the ends flush while I was constructing the top.




I didn't have enough spare plywood to put a single piece on the base, so I did it in two halves.  I only rough cut the pieces, leaving about 1/4" or so overhang.






Once it was all screwed together, I simply ran the router around it with the flush trim bit which made a perfectly flush edge.  The router has become my new favorite tool -- I LOVE this thing!




Here's the final product with the wheels bolted on.  The result is the typical "skateboard" you see here often.  Nothing exciting, but it's a pretty important piece of the structure nonetheless.




Looking forward to getting this thing erected and standing on its own.  Progress feels slow right now.  I'm sure once I get it standing it will feel like I've actually accomplished something.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2009, 12:58:39 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [9-27-09 - Cabinet Construction Continues]
« Reply #74 on: September 28, 2009, 07:07:47 am »
Good job on the base.  It's a pretty important piece to get square since it effects the rest of the cab.  I recut mine more than once before I was happy.   I know what you mean about how it feels like it's a slow process, for the last month it feels like I've had 2 full time jobs, since every spare minute I haven't been at work, ive been in the garage.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [9-27-09 - Cabinet Construction Continues]
« Reply #75 on: September 30, 2009, 04:04:21 pm »
Hit one of those milestones in the process...  The cab is finally standing upright!

Marrying the two sides was a bit of a tricky ordeal, since you have to get every piece perfectly aligned and connected on both sides.  

I built some guide blocks that have proved to be invaluable in this process.  Basically, they fit flush up against the plywood edge, and they replicate the exact distance between the sides and the faces.  Basically it's a 3/4" piece sandwiched with a 3/8" piece and an edge guide.  (3/4" represents the plywood width, and 3/8" represents the gap I want between the face and the edge where the T-molding will be installed)

Not sure if I'm making sense, so here's a picture that may make things more clear:



So basically what this allows me to do is simply push this guide up against the edge, then just butt the inner supports up against it before screwing them in.  Positions them exactly where they need to be in relation to the edge, and I don't have to constantly use the measuring tape for every little thing.  Saved me lots of time.

Anyway, I decided to use 2x4s as my primary supports, so for the first step I fastened them to the side 1 using support strips on the inside, and temporarily fastened the base using a couple L-brackets.  All of this basically to just keep the wood in one place for the rest of the process.






Then I simply laid the second side on top, lined everything up using my nifty guide blocks, drilled through the sides, countersunk and screwed them in.  Then I flipped the cabinet back over and installed screws through the first side the same way.



I'm sure there are lots of other ways to do this, and some of them probably include large clamps (which I unfortunately don't have), but this method seemed to work great for me.

....and finally the cabinet is standing on its own.  Feels like it's actually becoming an arcade cab, instead of just a scattered pile of wood and screws!






And of course I had to throw the (unfinished) control panel on there for a quick test drive.  Looks pretty goofy on there right now, but I just wanted to play pretend for a few minutes and imagine myself playing it.   :P




Now I need to get to work on all the faces...

I also uncovered a bit of a flaw in my design of the base.  The casters in the front don't work quite right.  I didn't install them far enough in from the sides to allow them full  circular motion, so they tend to bind on direction changes.  My intentions were to try to give the base as much stability as possible by mounting the wheels as far apart as I could, but that approach is coming back to bite me now.  Haven't decided what I want to do about it yet.  A bit irritating for sure.   :banghead:

Also, the more I look at it standing up, the more I wish I had made some parts of it more curvaceous.  Ah well...  next cab I guess...  ;)
« Last Edit: October 05, 2009, 12:23:11 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [9-30-09 - Finally Upright]
« Reply #76 on: October 05, 2009, 11:58:13 am »
looking good.  Keep them coming.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [9-30-09 - Finally Upright]
« Reply #77 on: October 05, 2009, 12:10:06 pm »
Looking good!  I love the art for the CP.  And hey, we have the same subwoofer! ;)

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [9-30-09 - Finally Upright]
« Reply #78 on: October 12, 2009, 01:14:07 am »
@shponglefan - Thanks for the compliment!  That's funny about the subwoofer.  I'm hoping it will work well, though I'm not 100% convinced I should use it.  I guess I'll see how much different it sounds with and without it and decide then.
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-11-09 - Woodwork Nearing Completion]
« Reply #79 on: October 12, 2009, 02:38:50 am »
looking good.  Keep them coming.

n88n, Thanks!  You asked for it, you got it...

I made a good bit of progress this weekend.

Got all of the major face pieces done.  I have to say having a table saw for these cuts would have saved me a TON of time, BUT I was pleasantly surprised at how well the job could be done with a hand tools and a little ingenuity.

So, at first I tried using the circular saw with the edge guide...




This is when I realized the importance of having the correct blade for the job...  I had a 20 tooth blade on there which really tore up the wood.  A trip to the hardware store netted a 40 tooth blade which did a much nicer job.




Basically I used two different techniques to make my cuts.  The first was to rough cut the pieces to within about 1/8" of the intended dimensions.  I then used a good piece of plywood as a guide by screwing it on and using the router and a flush trim bit to make the final edge cut.  The router makes a very clean edge.  




The second method was to screw a straight section of plywood onto the face to use as a guide for the circular saw.  This turned out work better than the metal guide with clamps as they tended to get in the way of the saw.  Also, using the plywood guide screwed into place, there was NO chance of it moving or flexing during the cut.




And here's the cab wearing some of the finished faces...  The top part of the cab looks really disproportionately tall at this point, but that'll obviously change later.






Next, I worked on the side holes which will house the plasma discs.  This is a step that I really should have done before I assembled the sides... but I made it work.

I really toiled over how to pull off perfectly round circles.  The method I decided to use was to make a template.  To do this, I used two pieces of plywood with some 2x4 blocks sandwiched in between.  I then ran a long 3" deck screw down through both pieces of plywood.  Next, I rigged some wire onto my jigsaw and looped it onto the screw.  This basically just makes the jigsaw work like a compass.  The key is to be sure the wire stays taught throughout the cut to keep the radius consistent.

It took some careful execution, but the template turned out really good.




I then just traced the circle onto the cabinet side at the pre-designated location, drilled a starter hole, and rough cut around the inside of the circle, leaving around 1/4" of extra.  Then I attached the template over the hole on the inside of the cabinet and ran around it with the router and the flush trim bit.












And the finished product...  The lighting makes it look a little odd, but in case it's not obvious, that smaller, darker circle in the middle is actually the hole on the other side of the cab.




Also got the holes cut for the speakers.  In contrast to the big holes on the sides of the cab, these were a breeze, since they don't have to be perfect (the speakers cover the holes).  Anyway, they fit great.  Looking forward to getting to the step when I can actually install them for real!

Just doing a little test fit here...




Anyway, that's all for now.  Hopefully I'm not boring you all with too many details of the process...   ;)  Just hoping maybe some of my methods for tackling some of these tasks might help others.

I will say that I'm definitely going to try to get a table saw before my next project.  Definitely would have been a welcomed luxury during this process...
« Last Edit: October 12, 2009, 10:41:53 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [9-30-09 - Finally Upright]
« Reply #80 on: October 12, 2009, 03:14:23 am »
I really toiled over how to pull off perfectly round circles.
It is quite easy, and very precise using this method:
Make a compass from a piece of MDF. Drill a large hole (10mm bigger than the bit at least) for the router bit. Mount the router on it with screws. Put a screw on a distance from the routerbit that is "radius-1/2*bit diameter"
Put a dummy sheet below the sheet that needs a hole. This sheet will allow the router bit to cut through not damaging your workbench. Put the screw on the helper piece on the router through the center of the circle, through the dummy sheet into the workbench (I guess you can live with a screwhole in the workbench). This fixates the whole stack on the bench. Finally, route the circles, around 3mm deeper each turn.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-11-09 - Woodworking Phase Nearing Completion]
« Reply #81 on: October 12, 2009, 08:09:53 am »
Hey looking really nice man!  I hear you on the router for finish cuts.  I do have a table saw but it's only useful for the smaller cuts, still need to use handtools to do the bigger pieces.  My method was similar to yours, i'd rough cut within 1/4inch or so, then use a straight edge and router.  I never owned a router before this project but now its my favorite tool!  If I had a router big enough, I could shape the world!!! LOL

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-11-09 - Woodworking Phase Nearing Completion]
« Reply #82 on: October 12, 2009, 09:14:45 am »
great work and I love the extra documentation.  Nice technique on cutting those holes, creative problem solving is always fun.

I can't wait to see the sides completed.  :)

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [9-30-09 - Finally Upright]
« Reply #83 on: October 12, 2009, 10:34:55 am »
I really toiled over how to pull off perfectly round circles.
It is quite easy, and very precise using this method:
Make a compass from a piece of MDF. Drill a large hole (10mm bigger than the bit at least) for the router bit. Mount the router on it with screws. Put a screw on a distance from the routerbit that is "radius-1/2*bit diameter"
Put a dummy sheet below the sheet that needs a hole. This sheet will allow the router bit to cut through not damaging your workbench. Put the screw on the helper piece on the router through the center of the circle, through the dummy sheet into the workbench (I guess you can live with a screwhole in the workbench). This fixates the whole stack on the bench. Finally, route the circles, around 3mm deeper each turn.

Thanks Blanka.  Yeah, I knew about this method, but I couldn't find a good way to fasten the router to the wood compass like you're describing.  I also didn't have the right bit to do this.  The method with the jig saw is the same in principal -- basically making it work like a compass.  I do think it's better to fasten whatever cutting device you use to a rigid compass arm.  The way I did it definitely requires a lot more care to make sure it stays the same distance from the screw as you go around the cut.  

I will probably try to do it the way you describe next time.  I'm just happy I got the same end result without screwing it up.   ;)


@syph007 - Thanks.  I completely agree with your sentiments on the router.  Very cool tool, and a must have for this type of project.

@n88n - Thanks.  I'm definitely looking forward to getting the sides done too!  :)
« Last Edit: October 12, 2009, 11:09:18 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-11-09 - Woodworking Phase Nearing Completion]
« Reply #84 on: October 12, 2009, 06:48:04 pm »
This is a great build to follow and I love the work you've done so far.

It's a shame to cover up the beautiful grain on that plywood you bought (both faces on the cab right side and the inner facing cab left side) - you have all sorts of burls on it that would look great on a piece of furniture.

Thanks for the link to NiceMite. He has some handy little PCBs that I will probably end up buying.

Steve

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-11-09 - Woodworking Phase Nearing Completion]
« Reply #85 on: October 17, 2009, 05:39:01 am »
Any updates Gamester? I am curious as to what your plans are for mounting your monitor. I have the same monitor you do going into my aliens cab and side portholes as well. Have you given it any thought?
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-11-09 - Woodworking Phase Nearing Completion]
« Reply #86 on: October 17, 2009, 01:55:58 pm »
@KissMyWookie - Thanks!  I agree, the wood grain really is beautiful, and I do hate to cover it up.  A woody was just not in the plans this time though.  It's definitely got me thinking about doing either a woody cab or juke for a future project though.   ;)


@Epyx - We finally have some beautiful weather here (following a solid week of rain), so I had big plans to get the woodworking wrapped up this weekend.  Unfortunately, my schedule seems to be filling up with other things.  :/  I do hope to squeeze in some building time though before the weekend is over.

For mounting the monitor, I haven't completely finalized my plans, but I'm leaning heavily toward mounting the monitor using it's brackets to 2x4 cross supports, as opposed to building a shelf.  I will probably use two cross supports in the front (to attach the top and bottom monitor bracket), then one in the back just to spread the load a bit, and help support the monitor while it's being mounted.  I will probably run two supports from the bottom brace down to the base of the cab, so the load is transferred there, instead of the sides (and the screws for the 2x4s) having to bear the whole load. 

There's just several things I didn't like about the shelf approach.  For one, considering the shape of the monitor, it seems like it will be more difficult to determine the exact height and angle the shelf needs to be built in order for it to align properly.  Also, a shelf would serve to restrict the air flow inside the cab more, and would restrict access to parts of the monitor.  Ultimately, I think it's easier to make use of the nice brackets and cage these arcade monitors have.  Obviously if I was using a TV or computer monitor, it would be a totally different story, and I'd pretty much HAVE to build a shelf.

Anyway, like I said, I'm hoping to at LEAST get the monitor mounts built this weekend.  As always, I'll post pics...
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-11-09 - Woodworking Phase Nearing Completion]
« Reply #87 on: October 17, 2009, 04:03:18 pm »
Quote
There's just several things I didn't like about the shelf approach.  For one, considering the shape of the monitor, it seems like it will be more difficult to determine the exact height and angle the shelf needs to be built in order for it to align properly.

Ya exactly, I used the shelf on my first cab, originally for a tv then for our monitor and it worked but it's less than ideal for exactly those reasons. I was also leaning towards brackets to 2x4 cross supports, similar to how Javeryh did his monitor on the Donkey Kong cab.  Raining here as well :( However, I have a covered garage so will try to do some woodwork as well.

Ill post as well if I get to the monitor portion...one thing I am not looking forward to is hauling the D9800 monster out of the other cab for fitting and measuring hehe!
« Last Edit: October 17, 2009, 04:23:45 pm by Epyx »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-11-09 - Woodworking Phase Nearing Completion]
« Reply #88 on: October 17, 2009, 04:20:15 pm »
one think I am not looking forward to is hauling the D9800 monster out of the other cab for fitting and measuring hehe!

I took to time to make a to scale cardboard mockup of my tv for fitting.  Might be a useful thing for you to do as well, much easier to handle a cardboard version.  Assuming of course its not a total pain to make one.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-18-09 - Woodworking 99% Complete]
« Reply #89 on: October 18, 2009, 10:59:58 pm »
A big time slot in my weekend schedule opened up unexpectedly, so I was able to work on the cab for several hours.

First up was the supports for the monitor.  As I mentioned in my previous post, since my arcade monitor has brackets on the front, I decided to just use 2x4s as the support instead of building a shelf.  I basically inset the mounts 4" from the front, since the monitor protrudes 2" out from the brackets, and to also account for the bezel and glass, while still having an inset from the front edge.




For extra support, I ran a couple 2x4s from the bottom cross-brace down to the base.  It's probably overkill, but I know that nearly all of the monitor's weight is going to be resting on that brace, and I don't want to take ANY chances.




Also got the speaker shelf mounted, and installed a mount for the marquee lights.




And finally, I got the last of the faces built and installed.  Here's what it looks like now.  




The only thing I have left to do is to cut a couple ventilation holes in the back, and cut out the hole for the coin door, which I should receive this week.  

I also need to haul my monitor downstairs so I can do a test fit.  Crossing my fingers that I measured everything right...   ;)

Will be nice to move on to the next phase...  I definitely can sense burnout coming on -- I really felt like I had to push myself through these final steps of the woodworking.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2009, 05:59:08 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-18-09 - Woodworking 99% Complete]
« Reply #90 on: October 18, 2009, 11:48:20 pm »
Nice job Gamester! You are getting close, don't burn out now! ;)

Can't wait to see your monitor mounted. That is exactly how I was going to try it as well and should provide enough strength.  You have all the downward weight pushing on your base and off the sides which is nice.

Question:  How do you find the 2.5" caster wheels? I was eying the exact same ones today at Home Depot..2 straight ones and 2 turnables with breaks. My first cab I went overkill with 4" wheels, these 2.5" look much better...how is movement?
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-18-09 - Woodworking 99% Complete]
« Reply #91 on: October 19, 2009, 12:10:36 am »
Question:  How do you find the 2.5" caster wheels? I was eying the exact same ones today at Home Depot..2 straight ones and 2 turnables with breaks. My first cab I went overkill with 4" wheels, these 2.5" look much better...how is movement?

I got my wheels at Lowes.  They seem to roll just fine, though I'll save final judgement until I get the control panel and monitor installed which will obviously add a lot of weight.  Unfortunately, as I mentioned previously, I made the mistake of mounting my caster wheels too close to the sides, so they tend to bind when you turn the cab sometimes.  I still need to fix that problem...  I've been procrastinating, mainly because I'm so annoyed that I have to redo them.   :banghead:
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #92 on: October 19, 2009, 04:54:43 am »


That white terminal block at the top connects the "power" wires for all of the LEDs together.  I basically made small jumper wires that go between each terminal so they're all connected as a single circuit, then a 5v power source was connected to the end terminal, providing power for all of the LEDs.  There are other ways to do it, but this seems to be the cleanest method.  Still need to put an inline fuse on the power wire.


Didn't you connect a 5V to the led-wiz at all? What size fuse did you get? Is there a way to calculate the size of the fuse?
You'd really help me out.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2009, 10:39:23 am by Kman-Sweden »

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-18-09 - Woodworking 99% Complete]
« Reply #93 on: October 19, 2009, 08:02:19 am »
I definitely can sense burnout coming on -- I really felt like I had to push myself through these final steps of the woodworking.

I hear you on that.  For the last month it felt like I had a second job, which was being a carpenter.  It'll go faster from this point on though, plus it's very exciting to do the next steps as each one makes it look more like an arcade!  I think I had the most fun putting on the tmolding :D  

You're project is looking real nice btw!

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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #94 on: October 19, 2009, 12:40:01 pm »
Didn't you connect a 5V to the led-wiz at all? What size fuse did you get? Is there a way to calculate the size of the fuse?
You'd really help me out.

The LED-Wiz is powered off the USB.  I have the LEDs powered directly off a 5V lead from the computer power supply.

I haven't purchased a fuse yet, but to calculate the size you need, I believe the rule of thumb is that you basically add up the current draw of all the devices and then use the next available size up for the fuse.

For example, each of the LEDs draws 100mA and I have 23 of them, so my total current draw is 2.3A.  I'll probably get whatever the next size fuse is up from 2.3A, which I'm betting is a 2.5A.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2009, 06:02:24 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's "ARCADE GALAXY"
« Reply #95 on: October 20, 2009, 03:04:30 am »
Didn't you connect a 5V to the led-wiz at all? What size fuse did you get? Is there a way to calculate the size of the fuse?
You'd really help me out.

The LED-Wiz is powered off the USB.  I have the LEDs powered directly off a 5V lead from the computer power supply.

I haven't purchased a fuse yet, but to calculate the size you need, I believe the rule of thumb is that you basically add up the current draw of all the devices and then use the next available size up for the fuse.

For example, each of the LEDs draws 100mA and I have 23 of them, so my total current draw is 2.3A.  I'll probably get whatever the next size fuse is up from 2.3A, which I'm betting is a 2.5A.
Seems logical. Thanks for the reply.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-21-09 - Coin Door & Monitor Test Fit]
« Reply #96 on: October 21, 2009, 11:44:55 pm »
Got a few minor things finished last night...

Received my shiny new coin door from Happ and made the cutout for it in the cab:






And finally did a test fit of the D9800.  Had to make a couple small notches in the bottom 2x4 support to clear some screw heads on the monitor bracket, but other than that, it fit like a glove.  Was very exciting to see that thing in there!  Can't wait until I can install it for good...




Some other little odds and ends I've been working on:

  • Compiled MAME .134u3 with hiscores and all the "nag" screens removed.
  • Went through all of my MAME games and weeded out all the ones I don't want in there, which definitely took a while.  I was able to filter out a bunch of the games that don't match my controls, adult oriented ones, and some other genres I wasn't interested in (e.g. 5 million variations of mahjong) using ROMLister.  I'm glad I did also go through it by hand afterward, because there were still quite a few adult oriented ones that slipped through the cracks that I don't want the kids stumbling upon.
  • Bought the supplies to start wood filling and priming (woot!)


To Do List:

  • Finish Control Panel Wiring
  • Wood filling / Priming & Painting
  • Build mounts for the plasma discs
  • Find or build a cash box
  • Hide Windows (Bootskinner and InstantSheller)
  • Design Marquee Art & get it printed
  • Replace coin reject buttons with Blue ones
  • Decide on T-Molding color (leaning towards chrome), order & install it
  • Monitor glass
  • Paint ventilation intake vent and install exhaust fan
  • Install Marquee Lights and retainers
  • Install the sound system
  • Fix my wheels
  • Trim and install the monitor bezel
  • Cabinet wiring (power strip, PC, lights, coin door lights and switches, etc.)
:dizzy:

I know there's probably more I'm forgetting.  Seems a bit daunting, but I guess I'll just take the "how to eat an elephant" approach (one bite at a time).  
« Last Edit: October 22, 2009, 12:47:09 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-21-09 - Coin Door & Monitor Test Fit]
« Reply #97 on: October 21, 2009, 11:56:57 pm »
 :cheers:

Man nice to see that monitor in there! :)  Im eying that same coin door rather than using my older one.

Would it be possible to take a picture from the back of the cab with the monitor in it or is it already out?
« Last Edit: October 22, 2009, 12:21:24 am by Epyx »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-21-09 - Coin Door & Monitor Test Fit]
« Reply #98 on: October 22, 2009, 12:00:08 am »
Nice! That cab looks really nice! I'm totally going to have to go back to page 1 and read up on the progress up to this point. Nice work Gamester! :cheers:

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-21-09 - Coin Door & Monitor Test Fit]
« Reply #99 on: October 22, 2009, 12:24:21 am »
@Epyx - D'oh!  I'm sorry, I already took the monitor out.  If it wasn't such a major fiasco to put it back in I'd certainly love to help you out.  Is there any particular question you have about the fit that I can answer for you?  
« Last Edit: October 22, 2009, 02:33:26 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-21-09 - Coin Door & Monitor Test Fit]
« Reply #100 on: October 22, 2009, 12:26:52 am »
Nice! That cab looks really nice! I'm totally going to have to go back to page 1 and read up on the progress up to this point. Nice work Gamester! :cheers:

Thanks Ryglore!  I've been watching your project carefully, and my compliments to you as well for a job really well done!   :applaud:
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-21-09 - Coin Door & Monitor Test Fit]
« Reply #101 on: October 22, 2009, 12:53:00 am »
Thanks Gamester and no worries on the picture. Was just curious how it looks from the back suspended from the 2x4s ;)

As for the screws I took a look at my D9800 and saw them so edited out of my post. I have mine sitting on a ledge so didn't realize they were protruding.
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-21-09 - Coin Door & Monitor Test Fit]
« Reply #102 on: October 22, 2009, 02:31:31 pm »
Thanks Ryglore!  I've been watching your project carefully, and my compliments to you as well for a job really well done!   :applaud:

Thanks! Best of luck with your continued progress!

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-24-09 - Woodworking Officially Complete]
« Reply #103 on: October 24, 2009, 07:38:30 pm »
Just a minor update...  Woodworking is totally complete now.  Got the holes for the cooling fans cut:




I found the perfect template for it in the plumbing department at the local hardware store.  It's called a 4" closet flange spacer.  So, like the previous holes, I simply traced the circle onto the wood, rough cut it with a jigsaw then screwed the template onto the back side and routed around it.  Piece of cake...




Also got the wood prep done by puttying all the screw holes and caulking the small gaps where some of the faces meet the sides.  Planning to sand and prime in the morning.  Getting there slowly but surely...

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-24-09 - Woodworking Officially Done]
« Reply #104 on: October 24, 2009, 09:23:04 pm »
Oh, and got the front wheels fixed too...  Had to glue and screw a block on each side, then just moved the wheel over.  Actually rolls like it's supposed to now... no more binding.  You can see the black marks on the side where the wheels were rubbing before.

« Last Edit: October 24, 2009, 09:29:49 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-25-09 - Marquee Art]
« Reply #105 on: October 25, 2009, 12:03:47 pm »
Here's what I came up with for my marquee.  Wanted to keep it simple and have it tie in well with the CP artwork.  Chose the ship from my all time favorite arcade game, Galaga, as the centerpiece.

Also attached is the CPO, just for easy comparison.

Comments are welcome...

« Last Edit: October 25, 2009, 03:00:44 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-25-09 - Marquee Art]
« Reply #106 on: October 25, 2009, 10:46:35 pm »
Nice! Though, did you try a bit bigger drop shadow behind the Galaga ship? It might make it stand out a little better, since it's so close to the lettering and the stripes all converge on that general area.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-25-09 - Marquee Art]
« Reply #107 on: October 25, 2009, 10:50:45 pm »
Nice! Though, did you try a bit bigger drop shadow behind the Galaga ship? It might make it stand out a little better, since it's so close to the lettering and the stripes all converge on that general area.

Good point.  I'll give that a try and see how it looks.  Thanks Ryglore!
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-25-09 - Marquee Art]
« Reply #108 on: October 25, 2009, 11:13:21 pm »
Anytime Gamester.  ;D

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-25-09 - Marquee Art]
« Reply #109 on: October 26, 2009, 10:22:36 am »
great progress.  :cheers:

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [10-28-09 - Priming]
« Reply #110 on: October 28, 2009, 01:49:20 am »
Three coats of primer down and lots of elbow grease left to go...



« Last Edit: October 28, 2009, 01:51:35 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Hell]
« Reply #111 on: November 02, 2009, 05:26:11 pm »
I'm stuck in priming hell right now.  After spinning my wheels for 3 days trying to get rolled-on primer smooth, I decided to change to spray-on stuff.  Well, the first type I tried went on too thin, and basically did nothing to fill in the defects.  So after letting it sit for 24 hours, I switched to filler primer.  That's when disaster struck.  Here's what happened shortly thereafter:



 :hissy:  :banghead:  :cry:

I cannot convey how much I wanted to pour gasoline on it and light a match.

I then spent several hours sanding it back down with 120 grit sandpaper.

Lessons learned:

1) If you have any intentions of having a really smooth finish, use spray primer only.
2) Use filler primer or "high build" primer.  The other stuff is just too thin to fill in the defects.
3) Wait longer than the manufacturer suggests between coats.

I'm starting to get back on track.  Probably have a couple days of priming and sanding left to get it perfect.  Then I get to start the process all over with paint.  Hopefully, if I get the prep work done right, that will be nothing more than spraying and lightly sanding.  Should be much more enjoyable (crossing fingers)...

My next project will, in all likelihood, be done with laminate.  Yeah, it might not be quite as pretty as a really well done paint job, but it is SO much easier, and probably considerably more durable.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2009, 05:33:11 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #112 on: November 02, 2009, 06:33:18 pm »
Oh man I know how that can put a damper on a project.. believe me.  Im struggling to get remotivated to finish my CP box.  I just was out in the garage messing up yet another attempt... problem for me is I kept rushing it...

I know if I tried paint I'd have similar issues, which is why I never considered it.  The only downside to laminate I think is the cost, but that cost might make up for the hours of painting, I dunno.

For sure dont light a match on it!  Just take a step back and regroup if you get too frustrated, thats what I have to do.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #113 on: November 02, 2009, 08:05:28 pm »
I know if I tried paint I'd have similar issues, which is why I never considered it.  The only downside to laminate I think is the cost, but that cost might make up for the hours of painting, I dunno.

I'm betting it's closer in price than one might think.  With laminate, you don't have to buy the expensive cabinet grade plywood.  And by the time you factor in the cost of sandpaper, primer, paint, clear coat, etc., painting get's pretty expensive.  When you also add in the labor, frustration and mess of painting/sanding, I think laminate is a pretty clear winner.

Now to some degree I'm probably a victim of my meticulous nature.  One who is less obsessed with achieving a smooth finish would probably be able to knock out this phase of the process a lot quicker than I am.

Anyway, since I'm going through all this trouble, I've decided I'm going to do a finish that's worthy of all the hard work.  I'm going to paint the cab a Midnight Black Metallic with several layers of clear coat.  If all goes as planned, this thing should look stunning when finished.
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Hell]
« Reply #114 on: November 02, 2009, 09:45:42 pm »




Oh dang! That sucks... When I primed my cab I went with standard interior primer and just rolled it on. The problem I have with spray is I never think I've gotten decent coverage and then I almost always end up with runs.  :banghead:

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #115 on: November 02, 2009, 11:08:27 pm »
That does suck gamester but not insurmountable. What I find works best is something like Kilz primer applied with a foam roller. You can get a red tray and foam roller with 2 foams for about $5 at Home Depot and they create a really nice coat for your primer and coats (and cut down the length of time considerably!).

GL!
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #116 on: November 02, 2009, 11:13:44 pm »
That does suck gamester but not insurmountable. What I find works best is something like Kilz primer applied with a foam roller. You can get a red tray and foam roller with 2 foams for about $5 at Home Depot and they create a really nice coat for your primer and coats (and cut down the length of time considerably!).

GL!

I used high density commercial grade foam rollers for all of my painting. I'm pleased with how the primer and solid coats went on and had to do minimal sanding between coats.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #117 on: November 03, 2009, 12:28:44 am »
That does suck gamester but not insurmountable. What I find works best is something like Kilz primer applied with a foam roller. You can get a red tray and foam roller with 2 foams for about $5 at Home Depot and they create a really nice coat for your primer and coats (and cut down the length of time considerably!).

Actually, that's exactly how I did it to start, but the primer still dried pretty bumpy (like the texture of an orange peel), and the amount of sanding required to get it smooth was ridiculous.  Maybe I just chose the wrong type of primer (Zinnsers).   :dunno

The high build spray primer definitely goes on much smoother.  I think the mistake is that I switched primer 3 times in an effort to find one that went on smooth AND filled the wood grain and surface flaws well.  Had I started out with this type to begin with I probably would have been fine, and would be done with this step by now.

Ah well, live and learn... the hard way...
« Last Edit: November 03, 2009, 12:45:55 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #118 on: November 03, 2009, 01:26:30 am »
The painting process is always a test in patience. I always paint with a high grade thin-sized roller, because I don't have to worry about coverage and I sand with my palm sander in between every coat. Get yourself a palm sander Gamester!  It makes the sanding process go a lot faster!
I always rely the sanding  part more-so than the actual application of the primer/paints.

Though, that large amount of cracking is concerning. How is the temperature in your workspace?

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #119 on: November 03, 2009, 01:43:06 am »
Quote
I still need to fix that problem...  I've been procrastinating, mainly because I'm so annoyed that I have to redo them.

This should make you feel better...While I didn't put my wheels too close to the side..I did put my rear ones too close to the center :(

End result is my cab tips over on a dime lol...so come this weekend I need to mount the rear wheels closer to the back..which means a larger piece of wood /sigh
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #120 on: November 03, 2009, 02:22:24 am »
Don't let painting challenges discourage you.  Laminate (as anyone that's laminating their cab will tell you) comes with it's own set of challenges.  I've had to cut back many hours of hard won surface finish when I wasn't happy with the result, all the way back to bare timber.  Not sure what sanding equipment you have access to, but at some stage you might want to invest in a good mechanical sander.  A palm sander has been mentioned but I prefer a more powerful full size orbital sander to work with. Cutting back paint goes much easier with one.  It's a slog sometines to get a good finish (I'm facing my own surface finishing hell soon) but it's what everyones eye is drawn to the first time they check out your work.  Keep at it, you've made great progress otherwise.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #121 on: November 03, 2009, 11:05:17 am »
Quote
Laminate (as anyone that's laminating their cab will tell you) comes with it's own set of challenges

Perfect example, is screwing on the bracings for the base on my cab...I drilled a little too deep and created a slight bulge into the laminate on the other side (im lucky as hell I didn't break through...).  I also had the roof fall on me when I was adjusting it and splinter some of the laminate (thankfully on the front edge so I can still trim it back more). But ya one slip up with laminate and you can go back to the drawing board :(
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #122 on: November 03, 2009, 11:25:52 am »
Get yourself a palm sander Gamester!  It makes the sanding process go a lot faster!

That's the thing...  I DO have a palm sander, and I did try using it.  Problem is, the sandpaper would get buildup on it within about 10 seconds of use.  I ended up just wet sanding just so I wouldn't have to change the sandpaper constantly.  

Though, that large amount of cracking is concerning. How is the temperature in your workspace?

It was about 75 degrees.

I dunno, there's so many variables that could have factored in to it.  Could have been one or any combination of the following:

a) Bad choice of primer.
b) Applying too much before sanding.
c) Wet sanding causing moisture buildup.
d) Using 3 different brands/types of primer.
e) Not letting it dry long enough before sanding
f) Not letting it dry long enough before recoating (even though I followed the directions).
g) Not using a coarse enough sandpaper.
h) Bad luck.

I dunno, it gives me tired head just thinking about it.  At any rate, I'm moving forward with more success now, so I'm not going to bother speculating anymore.

Anyway, thanks to everyone for the encouragement.  It is definitely appreciated!   :cheers:
« Last Edit: November 03, 2009, 12:44:44 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #123 on: November 03, 2009, 12:34:59 pm »
d) Using 3 different brands/types of primer.

I was thinking this may have been a cause, especially since one was a spray.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #124 on: November 03, 2009, 01:06:43 pm »
I dunno, it gives me tired head just thinking about it.  At any rate, I'm moving forward with more success now, so I'm not going to bother looking back anymore.
I know you're probably sick of talking about the primer stuff, so I won't "beat this dead horse" after this post.

That's the thing...  I DO have a palm sander, and I did try using it.  Problem is, the sandpaper would get buildup on it within about 10 seconds of use.  I ended up just wet sanding just so I wouldn't have to change the sandpaper constantly. 
Hmmm,  that sounds to me that the primer wasn't completely dry throughout, if it's caking up your sandpaper.  Also, IMO you shouldn't be wet sanding on any base coats. Wet sanding should happen more towards the end of your coat-count, because helps the finish more so than keeping the surface even. As well, if the base coats are too smooth, you might have a hard time getting additional coating to stick properly to the surface. For evening out primer, dry sanding with 80-120 grit should be sufficient till the painting starts, then progressively moving up in grit count on each paint coat.

Anyway, thanks to everyone for the encouragement.  It is definitely appreciated!   :cheers:
Keep on the keepin'-on my man, take these little set-backs with a "grain of salt". They're minuscule in comparison to the gaming-joy this cabinet will bring when you're completely done with it! At least, that's what I tell myself when I eff up stuff... ;D ;D
 :cheers:

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-02-09 - Priming Misery *sigh*]
« Reply #125 on: November 03, 2009, 02:22:20 pm »
Keep on the keepin'-on my man, take these little set-backs with a "grain of salt". They're minuscule in comparison to the gaming-joy this cabinet will bring when you're completely done with it! At least, that's what I tell myself when I eff up stuff... ;D ;D

Yup all the minor setbacks I caused myself aren't as bad as I remember them being when they first happened. Just gotta put one foot in front of the other.  :cheers:
 

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art]
« Reply #126 on: November 03, 2009, 07:45:33 pm »
Here's (hopefully) the final artwork for the marquee.

In the previous version, I didn't like the fact that the centerpiece (the Galaga ship) was off center, and was having to compete so much with the lettering behind it to stand out.  I decided to move the ship and the rays behind it up to the center, then push the title outward some so that it's no longer covered up.  I had to reduce the size of the ship a little to pull it off, but honestly even though it's a bit smaller, I think it stands out better, and the scale looks good in relation to the rest -- it's the centerpiece, but it doesn't completely dominate the entire image.

I also had an issue with the rays in the background printing out as purple, so I adjusted the color for that (to blue).

Other than that, I just fixed a few tiny defects that would have been visible, to me anyway, on the full-sized marquee.

I printed out a full sized mock-up today, and it looks fantastic, IMO.  Looking forward to getting it printed for real so I can see how it looks lit up.

I have Daddy duty tonight, so I can't go camp out in the garage to work on the primer.  I'll probably take the opportunity to try to finish up the CP wiring, which I've been putting off for quite some time.  Might do me good to step away from the priming for a night anyway...
« Last Edit: November 03, 2009, 07:58:38 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art]
« Reply #127 on: November 03, 2009, 09:00:52 pm »
Oh that looks much better, I like that it's all centered now it make it look way nicer and the ship does stand out a bit better. Did you decide how you were going to attach the marquee to the cab? and also, did you compensate for it? Nice work!  :cheers:

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art]
« Reply #128 on: November 03, 2009, 09:56:13 pm »
Did you decide how you were going to attach the marquee to the cab? and also, did you compensate for it?

That's a good question, and one I thought I had answered... until now.  I bought some angled aluminum at Home Depot that I was planning to screw on from the top of the cab and underneath the speaker shelf.  But when I started thinking about it more, I realized I designed myself into a little bit of a hole.  The aluminum angle brackets have 90 degree angles...  my speaker shelf is definitely not a 90 degree angle.  if I screw the L bracket to the bottom it's going to angle inward, making it all but useless:




In hindsight, I should have made a lip on the speaker shelf that comes out parallel to the top, like this:



If I had a way to bend the aluminum, uniformly, into the correct angle, it would be fine.  I don't have the means to do that...

For the bottom bracket, I'm probably going to need something that can screw into the front edge, as opposed to attaching to the underside of the speaker shelf.

Hrmm....
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art & Mounting Challenge]
« Reply #129 on: November 03, 2009, 10:15:03 pm »
Aaah that sucks! Luckily for me, we have a bunch of special tools and I was able to bend my aluminum for the proper angles. But you could try clamping a piece of aluminum in between a couple of boards and jury rigging a metal break out of it.... not sure how well that would work though.

Would it be possible to add the lip section after the fact?

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art & Mounting Challenge]
« Reply #130 on: November 03, 2009, 10:41:00 pm »
Would it be possible to add the lip section after the fact?

Well, the only problem is, as you can see in the picture, there's not much room left.  I definitely want the marquee to be recessed from the from the front edge of the cab some.  If I do put a lip there, it's going to have to be a pretty thin piece (like .5" or so).

I may experiment a little bit and see if I can bend the bracket without screwing it up.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2009, 10:59:31 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art & Mounting Challenge]
« Reply #131 on: November 03, 2009, 10:43:37 pm »
Quote
But when I started thinking about it more, I realized I designed myself into a little bit of a hole.  The aluminum angle brackets have 90 degree angles...  my speaker shelf is definitely not a 90 degree angle.  if I screw the L bracket to the bottom it's going to angle inward, making it all but useless:

Not at all...easy to fix...in fact most people build their cabs with the bottom speaker shelf not at a 90deg angle.  Ill post  you a few links that illustrate this from this forum but generally people will cut at a 45 at the end and just either bend the aluminum or affix a piece of wood to the end of the speaker shelf. Easier to link some to you but that is how i did it for my bartop and how I will do it on my current build.

You could do something like this:

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=92716.0
« Last Edit: November 03, 2009, 10:58:18 pm by Epyx »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art & Mounting Challenge]
« Reply #132 on: November 03, 2009, 11:11:03 pm »
Thanks for the ideas guys.  I think I may have come up with a good way to bend it.  If it works like I hope, I'll post my solution.
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art & Mounting Challenge]
« Reply #133 on: November 03, 2009, 11:38:52 pm »
Ha, ask Epyx. I'm all about ideas. :)

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art & Mounting Challenge]
« Reply #134 on: November 04, 2009, 08:30:38 am »
I used angle trim from Home Depot too, but its short on one side the fact that it's 90 degrees really doenst cause a problem. 

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=95768.msg1023725#msg1023725

I originally had bigger stuff but its impossible to bend.  This small stuff for carpet edging was perfect.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art & Mounting Challenge]
« Reply #135 on: November 04, 2009, 10:56:23 am »
That stuff does look like a decent solution.  The only problem I have with it is that it doesn't cover the area of the marquee where the wood is behind it, so you can see "shadow lines" on the top and bottom.  Maybe I'm just being too picky, but I'd rather have the marquee evenly lit, and if there's an area that's not going to look uniform, I'd prefer it to be covered up.

Hrmm....  I wonder if, instead of mounting my marquee light strips directly behind the marquee, if I actually mounted one LED strip high, shining diagonally at a downward angle, and one mounted low, shining upward diagonally, if that would illuminate those edges.  Maybe a little sanding to the back piece of plexi to also diffuse the light would help too.  If that would work, it would let me keep more of the marquee exposed, which I'd rather do.

EDIT: or maybe just strategically placing reflective material inside, in addition to diffusing the back piece of plexi would do it...

I'll have to experiment a bit when I get my plexi.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2009, 10:59:18 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art & Mounting Challenge]
« Reply #136 on: November 04, 2009, 11:53:28 am »
You could also thin the wood edges on an angle down to 1/4inch or so, that would block less light.  I did notice the slight shadow with my setup, but its pretty minor and doesn't 'yet' bug me enough to rip it apart.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-03-09 - Final Marquee Art]
« Reply #137 on: November 06, 2009, 01:21:56 pm »
Here's (hopefully) the final artwork for the marquee.

Love the changes.  The ship really stands out better this way and the overall layout looks great.
My project: The Royal Flush

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-13-09 - Paint Applied & Final Pieces Ordered]
« Reply #138 on: November 13, 2009, 09:29:39 pm »
Just a small update:

Got the paint completely applied finally.  Had some challenges with it...  I won't go into any detail other than to say that condensation in your clear coat is a bad thing.   :banghead:  

Got all that straightened out and am now waiting for the finish to cure so I can do a final high-grit wet sanding, then machine polish it.  Crossing my fingers that it turns out like I hoped.  I won't bother to post any pictures 'til it's done (probably mid-next week).

Got my marquee, 120mm fans and chrome t-molding ordered today too.  Those were the last significant pieces to the puzzle.  If all goes well, I should be able to go into hyper-drive next week on assembling everything.

For the marquee, I ended up going with MameMarquees.com.  I got the "Ultimate" version, and the pre-cut plexi.  It really turned out to be a convenience thing.  His prices are more expensive than I would have paid if I had gone somewhere local, but after all the suffering I just went through during the painting phase, I didn't want to deal with the hassle of cutting my own plexi and running around town to get my marquee printed.

Anyway, getting close......
« Last Edit: November 13, 2009, 10:53:28 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-13-09 - Paint Applied & Final Pieces Ordered]
« Reply #139 on: November 13, 2009, 09:33:37 pm »
For the marquee, I ended up going with MameMarquees.com.  I got the high-end version, and the pre-cut plexi.  It really turned out to be a convenience thing.  His prices are more expensive than I would have paid if I had gone somewhere local, but after all the suffering I just went through during the painting phase, I didn't want to deal with the hassle of cutting my own plexi and running around town to get my marquee printed.

 :cheers: You'll be happy with Mame Marquees, I love how mine turned out and I also got the pre-cut plexi and ultimate finish. It looks amazing and with the darker colors of your it should look even better than mine when lit. Keep it up!

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Thanks Ryglore.  I'll definitely keep it up...  I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel now...  :)

Yeah, I've heard nothing but praise for Scott's products, so I'm pretty excited to see how the marquee turns out.
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Ya, we Scott's are pretty awesome. :laugh:

But seriously, I'm totally impressed with the way both my CP and marquee turned out. If I ever build another full size cab, I'll be sending work his way for sure.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-13-09 - Paint Applied & Final Pieces Ordered]
« Reply #142 on: November 13, 2009, 10:50:16 pm »
Ya, we Scott's are pretty awesome. :laugh:

Indeed, we are...   8)    :P
« Last Edit: November 13, 2009, 10:52:53 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-14-09 - Plasma Disc Prep]
« Reply #144 on: November 14, 2009, 09:29:34 pm »
While I'm waiting for the paint to cure on the cab, I'm working on getting all the parts ready for installation.  The plasma discs were problematic in that they are somewhat transparent, therefore any light or shadows inside the cab would have shown through.  Another issue is that the electronics on the back side showed through as  a 4" diameter dark spot when viewed from the front.




I decided to kill two birds with one stone, and set out to paint the back of the glass.

Basically, I just taped off the electronics, sanded the glass to try to give the paint something to grab onto, cleaned it with alcohol, then sprayed it with 3 coats of Rustoleum Semi-Gloss spray paint.







Worked great and now prevents any light from penetrating from behind.  Also made the view from the front more uniform (no more dark spot in the middle),  and had the additional benefit of improving the contrast so that the electrical discharges actually stand out more than they did before.  Unfortunately the camera didn't capture how good it really looks.

« Last Edit: November 15, 2009, 10:17:44 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-14-09 - Improved Plasma Discs]
« Reply #145 on: November 15, 2009, 08:51:31 am »
Wow, at first I thought you were a bit crazy to paint them, but it does look very nice!

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-14-09 - Improved Plasma Discs]
« Reply #146 on: November 15, 2009, 10:16:05 am »
Wow, at first I thought you were a bit crazy to paint them, but it does look very nice!

Thanks emphatic.  Admittedly, I was a bit nervous about doing this at first, but I'm definitely pleased with the results.
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-14-09 - Improved Plasma Discs]
« Reply #147 on: November 16, 2009, 12:11:09 pm »
very cool!  You are getting so close.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-14-09 - Improved Plasma Discs]
« Reply #148 on: November 16, 2009, 01:25:44 pm »
Nice! That turned out way better than expected for sure. Can't wait to see it in place!  :cheers:

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-14-09 - Improved Plasma Discs]
« Reply #149 on: November 16, 2009, 08:42:28 pm »
@n88n - Thanks!  Yes, getting close.  I have family coming from out of town to visit this Sunday, so it has been mandated by the wife and kids that the arcade needs to be ready by then.  It's going to be grind to get it done, but I *think* I can make it.  ;)

@Ryglore - Thanks.  I can't wait to see them mounted myself.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2009, 12:24:04 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-16-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #150 on: November 16, 2009, 08:48:24 pm »
So, another little bit of progress tonight...  

I didn't like the standard "HAPP" coin reject inserts, and the fact that they said "25", considering my machine will be set to accept both tokens and quarters.  So I decided to make my own, and pay homage to another one of my favorite classics.   ;D  




And here's what they look like installed... (hard to capture well with a camera -- the black definitely does not look that washed out in person)




My wife is into scrapbooking, and when I told her what I was doing, she suggested that I use some of her vellum paper for the inserts, which worked GREAT!  It's pretty much white, but it is much more translucent than normal paper and "glows" better.  I have to give her props for that idea.  I initially did them on normal printer paper, and the vellum is definitely an improvement.  I'm pleased with how they turned out...

While I was at it, I also replaced the amber reject buttons with red ones to match the color scheme of the cab.

« Last Edit: November 17, 2009, 04:25:17 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-16-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #151 on: November 16, 2009, 11:46:46 pm »
Nice work man!

Has anyone else noticed the Pac constellation on the CP? Very cool way of getting another nod in, esp with the 'fewer characters' CP

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-16-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #152 on: November 17, 2009, 12:18:31 am »
Nice work man!

Has anyone else noticed the Pac constellation on the CP? Very cool way of getting another nod in, esp with the 'fewer characters' CP

Thanks Jefferson.  

Not sure if anyone else noticed the Pac-Man constellation or not, but you're definitely the first one that's pointed it out.  Good eye!

If you look carefully, on the other side of the CP you might notice another familiar "constellation"...  ;)
« Last Edit: November 17, 2009, 12:25:36 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-16-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #153 on: November 17, 2009, 04:09:53 pm »
Ya, those look great!  :applaud:
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-16-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #154 on: November 17, 2009, 04:22:53 pm »
Thanks Epyx!

My excitement level got a small boost today, as I received shipping confirmation from Scott for my Marquee, and the T-molding should be here on Friday.  (woot!)

I also FINALLY finished the CP wiring Monday night (pics to follow later), and I'll be wet sanding and polishing the paint on the cab tomorrow.

Going to be a flurry of activity over the next several days, as I'm now headed down the final stretch...
« Last Edit: November 17, 2009, 04:32:25 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-16-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #155 on: November 23, 2009, 09:08:26 am »




Wow, how did I miss this? Those look awesome! I'm actually still working on getting my coin eject labels looking right. I may have to take your wife's advice and go with vellum, luckily I have some laying around the house.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-16-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #156 on: November 23, 2009, 10:45:18 am »
Thanks Ryglore.  Can't wait to see yours when you get them done!

MONSTER update coming later, when I have time to put the post together.  Lots of shiny, sparkling, glowing goodness....   ;D
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-16-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #157 on: November 23, 2009, 11:04:31 am »
Thanks Ryglore.  Can't wait to see yours when you get them done!

MONSTER update coming later, when I have time to put the post together.  Lots of shiny, sparkling, glowing goodness....   ;D

Sweet! Can't wait for the MONSTER update!  :cheers:

I'm printing them on a higher end laser printer so the black is as opaque as possible. Originally I used card stock, and that was too dark with the blue buttons and barely shined through, even with the LEDs behind it. Now I am using regular printer paper and I like the way those look so far, but you still can't see the whole label. I think I'll cut some of these sheets of vellum I have down to 8.5" x 11". I'll take pictures of each and post them to the SHMUP thread so you can see the difference.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-16-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #158 on: November 23, 2009, 11:13:15 am »
Now I am using regular printer paper and I like the way those look so far, but you still can't see the whole label. I think I'll cut some of these sheets of vellum I have down to 8.5" x 11". I'll take pictures of each and post them to the SHMUP thread so you can see the difference.

I haven't swapped out my lights yet, so I'm not sure how much difference in brightness there is with the LEDs, but if you find that the black gets too washed out on the vellum, you might want to try doubling them up.  Obviously the key to that is to be sure you have the two pieces matched perfectly.

I definitely noticed that the vellum paper has properties that make it seem to "glow" better than normal paper. 

I'm curious to see what you come up with...
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-16-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #159 on: November 23, 2009, 03:25:36 pm »
I haven't swapped out my lights yet, so I'm not sure how much difference in brightness there is with the LEDs, but if you find that the black gets too washed out on the vellum, you might want to try doubling them up.  Obviously the key to that is to be sure you have the two pieces matched perfectly.

I definitely noticed that the vellum paper has properties that make it seem to "glow" better than normal paper. 

I'm curious to see what you come up with...

Vellum does seem to have a nice effect to it when you backlight it, instead of using normal paper. But from swapping out the standard #161 bulbs with my Happ LEDs you can really see a brightness difference.

So far from what I see working with it here in the office at work. 1 sheet thickness of Vellum may be too thin when you put an LED behind it, especially the 3 cluster replacement I am using. Doubling up the sheets will work since the stuff is the same thickness, if not thinner than regular office paper. You could also just double up the vellum w/o doubling the images. But I think you'll end up with a nicer effect when you double the image so the black is darker.

I plan on trying it three ways with 1 sheet thickness, 1 printed w/ 1 blank and with 2 printed layers and see how they all look. I'm not sure if I'll be able to get around to it tonight or if it will be tomorrow, but I'll try to get to it asap.  I'll definitely let you know what I find out.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-7-09 - Paint]
« Reply #160 on: November 24, 2009, 01:38:29 pm »
Okay, so I promised a "monster" update on the cabinet progress, so here goes...

So, I'll go back to the painting phase... ah, what a wonderfully fun time that was.  *cough*

Here's how it started out:




Here's after about 5 coats of base and 3 coats of clear, BEFORE final sanding/polishing:




And here's the end result.  I have to admit, even though I b*tched and moaned about the process, and all the problems, I'm glad I painted it after all.  You just can't get a finish like this with laminate...




And here's what it looks like when light shines on it.  The metallic really shines through...





...more to come momentarily...
« Last Edit: November 27, 2009, 12:24:02 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-18-09 - Final Parts Arrive/Assembly Starts]
« Reply #161 on: November 24, 2009, 01:55:12 pm »
Mounted the Lumindiscs.  There were multiple ways I could have done it, but I chose to just cut a strip of my scrap ply, cut a hole and screw it in.  Worked great.




Finished the control panel wiring, finally...




Received a couple of important goodies in the mail...






Then promptly went to work on installing the monitor and T-Molding.  MISTAKE: I totally underestimated how much force was going to be required to install the T-Molding.  I had to use a rubber mallet (with a towel wrapped around it).  In order to install the molding on the bottom edge, the cabinet had to be laid on its side.  Well, I wasn't going to try to lay this baby down with that 100LB monitor weighing it down, sooo, I had to take the monitor and plasma discs BACK OUT again to install the molding.  Nothing like doing tasks twice.   :banghead:

And here's the molding and monitor installed:





The monitor needed to be tested of course, and my son was glad to oblige ;)...  I know, I know, I was heading into dangerous waters by firing up a game before it was finished.   :)




Next got the fans installed.  Nice little fans.  No bling to them, but they should last a good long time.  They have magnetic bearings, and a thermostatic switch so they adjust their speed automatically according to the temps inside the cab.  They seem to be pretty quiet too.



I was starting to get worried about the load on the power supply, with all the stuff hanging off of it (it's only a 450W supply).  I decided that I would run the two ventilation fans off of a small "wall wart" power supply.  I simply found an extra one lying around the house that was rated to handle the power needs of the fans. Then I just spliced in a molex connector.  Worked great!

« Last Edit: November 27, 2009, 12:26:54 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-16-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #162 on: November 24, 2009, 01:56:48 pm »
That paint job is fantastic! I bet that metallic looks amazing in person, you better have the thing in a well lit area to show it off!  :cheers:

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-20-09 - Assembly Continues]
« Reply #163 on: November 24, 2009, 02:05:00 pm »
Next step in the process was the monitor bezel.  I was a bit befuddled as to how to mount it.  The solution I ended up with was to install some wood mounts at the appropriate distance from the front edge, then apply velcro.  I was a bit skeptical at first, but it worked great and seems to hold up the bezel with no problem.



Marquee light was next, which was a very straightforward install.  Just screwed them in and ran some wire down to the PC, attached molex connectors using the 12v (yellow) leads and plugged them in.






Here's some shots from the inside of the cab, after most of the wiring was completed:





Coin door wiring...




And for the back door, I decided to not install hinges.  Simply put some magnetic cabinet latches on each side of the panel, and installed a knob at the top.  Also made a hole for the main power cable...








And the back all closed up...

« Last Edit: November 24, 2009, 03:29:30 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #164 on: November 24, 2009, 02:08:47 pm »
.....and *drumroll* here's how it looks now...















« Last Edit: December 04, 2009, 12:36:53 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - Custom Coin Reject Inserts]
« Reply #165 on: November 24, 2009, 02:12:42 pm »

And of course, this is what it's all about...  grooming a new generation of classic arcade lovers!   ;D




Still have a few loose ends to take care of.  The most glaring of which is my speakers.  My car speaker idea flopped.  The magnets are just too strong to use near a CRT, and I wasn't able to shield them sufficiently to allow them to work.  This puts me in a bit of a bind, because I already have the holes cut for a 5.25" speaker, and I'm having a hard time finding shielded full range drivers that will fit.  The closest I've found is some 4" ones from Parts Express.  I may just have to get those and figure out a way to mount them inside the larger holes.

Also need to order some monitor glass.  Haven't decided yet whether I want to just do clear glass or tinted.  There are pros and cons both ways.

The other issues are mainly just software related quirks, which I'm slowly working through.
« Last Edit: November 24, 2009, 03:47:06 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #166 on: November 24, 2009, 02:25:31 pm »
 :cheers:

Awesome finish Gamester!  Now get some well deserved playtime in.
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #167 on: November 24, 2009, 03:03:24 pm »
Very nice job!  Love the finish as well, must feel great to finally be playing it.

Great work, and looks to be well worth it.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #168 on: November 24, 2009, 03:16:35 pm »
 :applaud: Superb finish on that paint job. Everything else is looking top notch as well.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #169 on: November 24, 2009, 03:20:20 pm »
I like it.   :applaud:

It's begging for some lit balltops, tho...   8)

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #170 on: November 24, 2009, 03:41:59 pm »
Thanks for all the compliments guys!  It's definitely rewarding to be playing on it after all this time.  Fortunately, it turned out to be everything I was hoping for.

As I mentioned before, I still have a few loose ends to take care of on this build, then I'll probably enjoy the fruits of my labor for a while.  When the project bug bites again (I'm sure that won't take too long), I'll start planning my next project, which will either be a jukebox or pin.

It's begging for some lit balltops, tho...   8)

HarumaN, I definitely agree, but they don't seem to be very readily available for the U360s, and the one or two people that I recall pulling it off had access to metalworking machinery and such.  If you know of an active source for them, I'm all over it...
« Last Edit: November 24, 2009, 03:58:03 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #171 on: November 24, 2009, 04:39:27 pm »
Is the Marquee light on in those pictures? It doesn't seem like it's glowing very much.  :-\

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #172 on: November 24, 2009, 05:52:13 pm »
NICE JOB!  I had a feeling you'd beat me.. I had a mad rush on for awhile, but I got sick and ran out of cash... better now but still havent quite found my motivation again.  Ive been mostly making mockup panels and testing.   Are you happy with your control positions?  I keep flip flopping and now I think I want swappable panels so that when I play 1P games, Im in the middle... GAH!  I swear I'll get back to it.. but Ive been playing alot of games though, that counts right!

Anyways, very impressed, looked pro for sure!

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #173 on: November 24, 2009, 06:21:19 pm »
Quote
HarumaN, I definitely agree, but they don't seem to be very readily available for the U360s, and the one or two people that I recall pulling it off had access to metalworking machinery and such.  If you know of an active source for them, I'm all over it...

Actually, the ones I have are compatible with the U360s. Luigi's.  The balltops and shafts are interchangeable for the most part.
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #174 on: November 24, 2009, 08:21:39 pm »
The balltops and shafts are interchangeable

 :o

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #175 on: November 24, 2009, 09:50:38 pm »
Quote
Extra ball tops in various colors. Also fit J-Stik and Sanwa JLW-TM-8. 35mm standard. Also 25mm small black ball for table-tops.

The Ultra 360s are just modified Sanwas...here is a quote from the www.ultimarc.com website.  As you can see the balls and shafts are interchangeable.
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #176 on: November 25, 2009, 12:07:31 am »
Is the Marquee light on in those pictures? It doesn't seem like it's glowing very much.  :-\

Yeah, the light is on in the pictures.  It's just the camera (or more accurately, the photographer).  In some of the photos, the flash drowns out the marquee backlight, and in others the camera adjusts its exposure to compensate for the brightest light source in the frame, which is usually the monitor, therefore the marquee light looks less bright.

In person, the marquee has a very nice glow to it, but it's not so overpowering that it washes out the colors and blinds onlookers.  It's just right, IMO.  

It's just really hard to capture the true brightness without ruining other parts of the exposure.
« Last Edit: November 25, 2009, 12:50:39 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #177 on: November 25, 2009, 12:34:13 am »
NICE JOB!  I had a feeling you'd beat me.. I had a mad rush on for awhile, but I got sick and ran out of cash... better now but still havent quite found my motivation again.  Ive been mostly making mockup panels and testing.   Are you happy with your control positions?  I keep flip flopping and now I think I want swappable panels so that when I play 1P games, Im in the middle... GAH!  I swear I'll get back to it.. but Ive been playing alot of games though, that counts right!

Anyways, very impressed, looked pro for sure!

Thanks!

I haven't honestly had a chance to play a lot of games yet, but my first impression of the control layout has been pretty positive.  I can't honestly say I would change anything in that regard at this point.  Now once I've used it for a while, I may develop other opinions on it, but so far so good.

My only suggestion is not to fall into the "analysis 'til paralysis" situation, where you think about something so much you end up doing nothing.  Just pick one of the proven control layouts that you think will best match your favorite games and go with it.  I don't think there is a panacea when it comes to this stuff.

Looking forward to watching your progress.  I know you'll do a great job.   :cheers:
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #178 on: November 25, 2009, 02:05:45 am »
Damn! You got that finish using a can? What clear coat did you use?

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #179 on: November 25, 2009, 05:01:21 am »
 :applaud: Awesome job! Love the paint job and the control panel! Your kids are damn lucky too. I'm pretty sure your son's friends don't have such an awesome cab at home. :)

Is that a WG D9800 27"? I am considering getting one myself for a cab I'm hoping to start building very soon.

Could you share a little about your experiences with it? Are you using an ArcadeVGA2 with it? Any heavy tweaking to get it working with all games, or was it basically plug'n'play? :)

Sorry for all the questions, but I'd love to hear if you're happy with the monitor and if it works fine with MAME (auto resolution switching etc.).

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #180 on: November 25, 2009, 11:27:38 am »


  Nice job!  That metallic paint looks amazing! 


 :cheers:
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #181 on: November 25, 2009, 02:36:18 pm »
Quote
Extra ball tops in various colors. Also fit J-Stik and Sanwa JLW-TM-8. 35mm standard. Also 25mm small black ball for table-tops.

The Ultra 360s are just modified Sanwas...here is a quote from the www.ultimarc.com website.  As you can see the balls and shafts are interchangeable.

While that's true, it appears there's a lot more modification required to get the shafts to work with the U360s.  Unfortunately, I haven't found anyone that's offering a complete solution for sale, nor have I (yet) found a consensus on what the easiest/best/right way is to perform the mods to make it work.

Since there doesn't seem to be any plug-and-play solution for this, it may be a project I decide to tackle down the road, after I've rejuvenated a bit.

I'm happy to be corrected if I have my facts wrong... 
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #182 on: November 25, 2009, 02:49:06 pm »
the balls and shafts are interchangeable.

Epyx, really. That's talent. :duckhunt

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #183 on: November 25, 2009, 02:53:21 pm »
Damn! You got that finish using a can? What clear coat did you use?

@ivwshane- Yep, all from spray cans.  The key is wet sanding with 400 or 600 grit (grit depends on how many defects there are) between coats of clear.  You can't sand the base coats since it ruins the metallic, so it's also very important to get your primer as smooth as possible.

Here's the paint and clear coat I used.  The paint is called Midnight Black Metallic...




For the final finish, I did the following:

- Applied a final coat of clear
- Let it cure for about a week
- Wet sanded thoroughly with 2000 grit paper
- Used my orbital polisher with Sealer Wax, then Yellow Carnauba wax
- Lightly hand polished it with soft terrycloth.

Here's the wax I used.  These bottles are a few years old now, but I'm sure the modern equivalent is out there.


« Last Edit: November 25, 2009, 03:12:16 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #184 on: November 25, 2009, 02:55:48 pm »
@Billy_Goatfeet - Thanks!  Glad you like it.  :-)
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #185 on: November 25, 2009, 02:59:23 pm »
I may have to try something like that after I finish touch ups on SHMUP. I Always intended to do a mirror-like finish on the sides and front. Perhaps this is the route to go, as long as sanding the clear coat doesn't effect my lines...

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #186 on: November 25, 2009, 03:07:47 pm »
:applaud: Awesome job! Love the paint job and the control panel! Your kids are damn lucky too. I'm pretty sure your son's friends don't have such an awesome cab at home. :)

Thanks for the compliments!  My kids are very appreciative, and I'm really happy to have toys like this around the house, because my teenage kids and their friends enjoy spending time here at the house, instead of having to go elsewhere to get their kicks.  ;)


Is that a WG D9800 27"? I am considering getting one myself for a cab I'm hoping to start building very soon.

Yes, it's the D9800.


Could you share a little about your experiences with it? Are you using an ArcadeVGA2 with it? Any heavy tweaking to get it working with all games, or was it basically plug'n'play? :)

My experience with it thus far has been very positive.  It puts out an absolutely gorgeous image.  I started out this process with a 25" Sony WEGA with component inputs, and frankly, I think the D9800 is a pretty significant improvement.

I have to admit, I'm a little nervous about the long term reliability, simply because of the quality issues some of WG's previous models had, but I'm cautiously optimistic that it will be fine.

As mentioned further up in the thread, I've installed an ATI video card and Sailorsat's Soft15Khz utility to handle the arcade resolutions.  However, I'm currently not even using the arcade resolutions.  I just have the monitor running at 800x600 and everything is scaling.  I'm actually surprisingly pleased with how it looks at the moment, and am not in any hurry to go through the hassle of getting everything running at native res just yet..


Sorry for all the questions, but I'd love to hear if you're happy with the monitor and if it works fine with MAME (auto resolution switching etc.).

Don't hesitate to ask questions.  I could not have completed my project without the great input of many on this board.  I'm glad to return the favor, and it's also why I've tried to be as thorough as possible in documenting my build.


*Adding this thread to my favorite cab bookmark folder!*

That's very flattering.  I'm really glad others appreciate how it turned out.

Good luck on your project, and I look forward to following your progress!   :cheers:
« Last Edit: November 25, 2009, 03:45:37 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #187 on: November 25, 2009, 03:17:01 pm »
Gotta say that the paint job is simply stunning. It looks like a hellluva lot of work and love went into that.
Click a pic for a video tour 

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #188 on: November 25, 2009, 03:45:16 pm »
:applaud: Awesome job! Love the paint job and the control panel! Your kids are damn lucky too. I'm pretty sure your son's friends don't have such an awesome cab at home. :)

Thanks for the compliments!  My kids are very appreciative, and I'm really happy to have toys like this around the house, because my teenage kids and their friends enjoy spending time here at the house, instead of having to go elsewhere to get their kicks.  ;)


Is that a WG D9800 27"? I am considering getting one myself for a cab I'm hoping to start building very soon.

Yes, it's the D9800.


Could you share a little about your experiences with it? Are you using an ArcadeVGA2 with it? Any heavy tweaking to get it working with all games, or was it basically plug'n'play? :)

My experience with it thus far has been very positive.  It puts out an absolutely gorgeous image.  I started out this process with a 25" Sony WEGA with component inputs, and frankly, I think the D9800 is a major improvement.

I have to admit, I'm a little nervous about the long term reliability, simply because of the quality issues some of WG's previous models had, but I'm cautiously optimistic that it will be fine.

As mentioned further up in the thread, I've installed an ATI video card and Sailorsat's Soft15Khz utility to handle the arcade resolutions.  However, I'm currently not even using the arcade resolutions.  I just have the monitor running at 800x600 and everything is scaling.  I'm actually surprisingly pleased with how it looks at the moment, and am not in any hurry to go through the hassle of getting everything running at native res just yet..


Sorry for all the questions, but I'd love to hear if you're happy with the monitor and if it works fine with MAME (auto resolution switching etc.).

Don't hesitate to ask questions.  I could not have completed my project without the great input of many on this board.  I'm glad to return the favor, and it's also why I've tried to be as thorough as possible in documenting my build.


*Adding this thread to my favorite cab bookmark folder!*

That's very flattering.  I'm really glad others appreciate how it turned out.

Good luck on your project, and I look forward to following your progress!   :cheers:

Thanks for the thorough reply! The only thing that ticks me off from getting a WG 27" now is the fact that I'm going to play some SFIV and Future Pinball on my cab as well and I don't know how good that will look in 800x600 on a 27" screen. I was thinking of getting the ArcadeVGA2 with this monitor, but the GPU on it is really crap for anything other than 2D-games (I'm very picky framerate-wise :)).

Anyways, I really think the D9800 looks awesome and I'm sure it will beat the cr*p out of a PC monitor, I just can't manage to decide whether I want to go for it or not yet.  ::)

Again awesome cabinet!
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #189 on: November 25, 2009, 04:07:08 pm »
Thanks for the thorough reply! The only thing that ticks me off from getting a WG 27" now is the fact that I'm going to play some SFIV and Future Pinball on my cab as well and I don't know how good that will look in 800x600 on a 27" screen. I was thinking of getting the ArcadeVGA2 with this monitor, but the GPU on it is really crap for anything other than 2D-games (I'm very picky framerate-wise :)).

Anyways, I really think the D9800 looks awesome and I'm sure it will beat the cr*p out of a PC monitor, I just can't manage to decide whether I want to go for it or not yet.  ::)

The resolution is obviously not going to be as high as with a computer monitor, but the properties of arcade monitors make the lower res images look really nice and vivid.  SFIV would look much better on an arcade monitor at 800x600 then it would on a computer CRT at the same resolution.  

Unfortunately, there is no single display solution that does everything well.  If you go back to the earlier stages of my build, you'll see I struggled with the same decisions.  Ultimately, I concluded that I had to base my decision on what my primary purpose for the cabinet is.  For me, playing the classics is far and away the most important, so I went with a monitor that covers that need without compromise.  If more modern, higher res games, like SFIV and Future Pinball were my top priorities, I would have gone with LCD and had to compromise the quality of the classic games.

If I ever want the best of both worlds, I figure worst case, I'll build a second cab with an LCD.

I know there are a couple people on this board with the D9800 that run SFIV on it, and I think they are pretty pleased with how it looks.  

I believe Delusional29 is one of them.  Here's one of his videos on the subject:




Good luck with your decision...
« Last Edit: November 25, 2009, 04:12:00 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #190 on: November 25, 2009, 05:12:09 pm »
Here's some better shots of the CP.  Lighting wasn't too good on the previous shots.







Unfortunately, I neglected to attach the button inserts with a dab of super glue, so they have moved around a bit inside the buttons.  That's another item on my list of things to fix this weekend...
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #191 on: November 26, 2009, 02:52:05 am »
Thanks for the thorough reply! The only thing that ticks me off from getting a WG 27" now is the fact that I'm going to play some SFIV and Future Pinball on my cab as well and I don't know how good that will look in 800x600 on a 27" screen. I was thinking of getting the ArcadeVGA2 with this monitor, but the GPU on it is really crap for anything other than 2D-games (I'm very picky framerate-wise :)).

Anyways, I really think the D9800 looks awesome and I'm sure it will beat the cr*p out of a PC monitor, I just can't manage to decide whether I want to go for it or not yet.  ::)

The resolution is obviously not going to be as high as with a computer monitor, but the properties of arcade monitors make the lower res images look really nice and vivid.  SFIV would look much better on an arcade monitor at 800x600 then it would on a computer CRT at the same resolution.  

Unfortunately, there is no single display solution that does everything well.  If you go back to the earlier stages of my build, you'll see I struggled with the same decisions.  Ultimately, I concluded that I had to base my decision on what my primary purpose for the cabinet is.  For me, playing the classics is far and away the most important, so I went with a monitor that covers that need without compromise.  If more modern, higher res games, like SFIV and Future Pinball were my top priorities, I would have gone with LCD and had to compromise the quality of the classic games.

If I ever want the best of both worlds, I figure worst case, I'll build a second cab with an LCD.

I know there are a couple people on this board with the D9800 that run SFIV on it, and I think they are pretty pleased with how it looks.  

I believe Delusional29 is one of them.  Here's one of his videos on the subject:




Good luck with your decision...

It do look great on the D9800 indeed and after all, I will mostly be playing classic/2d games (as that's what I enjoy the most). The only problem I see now is getting a WG D9800 to Norway. AFAIK there's no chance of buying one here in Norway so I have to get it shipped and that'll cost me probably $200-$250 in shipping only. Add $400 to that for the monitor itself and I'm paying close to $700 for an arcade monitor. Is it worth it? Looks like it. :)
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #192 on: November 26, 2009, 10:45:16 am »
Quote
My only suggestion is not to fall into the "analysis 'til paralysis" situation, where you think about something so much you end up doing nothing

Amen

Don't let me tell you about the three days I spent researching castors!

Great build you have there mate, and that finish you got is fantastic.  :applaud:

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #193 on: November 26, 2009, 03:03:57 pm »
Quote
My only suggestion is not to fall into the "analysis 'til paralysis" situation, where you think about something so much you end up doing nothing

Amen

Don't let me tell you about the three days I spent researching castors!

Great build you have there mate, and that finish you got is fantastic.  :applaud:


HA! Only three days? How can you be sure you got the right ones!?!? :D   Point taken though, it's a vicious cycle if you're the type has a hard time making decisions like I do!

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #194 on: November 26, 2009, 03:56:27 pm »
Think I'm going with rubber feet now...   :D

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #195 on: November 30, 2009, 03:09:26 pm »
turned out amazing!!!  I was very interested in this build from the beginning and I knew it would turn out great.  You have not let me down.  :cheers:

Have you been playing with the auto mapping of your U360s?  How is that going with hyperspin?

awesome work.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #196 on: November 30, 2009, 11:18:18 pm »
Awesome dude, that is very pretty...I am jealous, kudos again.
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #197 on: December 01, 2009, 12:39:08 pm »
Now that looks badass! :applaud:

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #198 on: December 02, 2009, 11:11:06 pm »
turned out amazing!!!  I was very interested in this build from the beginning and I knew it would turn out great.  You have not let me down.  :cheers:

Have you been playing with the auto mapping of your U360s?  How is that going with hyperspin?

awesome work.

Thank you!  Glad you like it!  

The recent versions of Mame handle the restriction automatically, so honestly there hasn't been much urgency to configure the U360 mapping.  I've had too many other minor software configuration 'bugs' and tweaks to chase down to keep me pretty busy thus far.


Awesome dude, that is very pretty...I am jealous, kudos again.

I appreciate that!  Don't be jealous... as I recall, you've got a pretty nice rig yourself.  ;)


Now that looks badass! :applaud:

Thanks thatitalian!  Coming from you, that definitely means a lot, because I've seen some of your fantastic work!

« Last Edit: December 02, 2009, 11:13:11 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #199 on: December 03, 2009, 07:23:06 am »
Good Gawd Man!  That is a great looking cabinet!  Have fun playing!!

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #200 on: December 04, 2009, 09:10:43 am »
Gamester,

   First things first, your project turned out amazing! Great work and also a great guide. I do have a question regarding your artwork. You said you ordered from Fullsizeposters.com which is great cause their pricing is good. So does it come as a thin sheet of high quality paper then? Obviously their is some level of error in cutting dimensions for the actual CP itself, how did you make your artwork fit so well? Did you just oversize the artwork a hair and then use a exacto knife or something to trim the edges? You also mentioned you used a piece of acrylic on top of your artwork, how thick was it and was it easy to work with? Also, did you order your marquee from the same website and sandwhich it between pieces of acrylic yourself?

  Any insight would be appreciated as I'm nearly ready to order mine!

Thanks,
Honkyharris

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #201 on: December 04, 2009, 12:55:58 pm »
First things first, your project turned out amazing! Great work and also a great guide.

Thanks!


I do have a question regarding your artwork. You said you ordered from Fullsizeposters.com which is great cause their pricing is good. So does it come as a thin sheet of high quality paper then?

It is printed on high quality archival photo paper.  I would not categorize it as "thin" by any means.  It's fairly heavy duty stuff.


Obviously their is some level of error in cutting dimensions for the actual CP itself, how did you make your artwork fit so well? Did you just oversize the artwork a hair and then use a exacto knife or something to trim the edges?

Yes, I designed the artwork to go an inch or so beyond the shape of the CP.  Then I sandwiched it between the CP and the clear top and carefully trimmed all the holes and the sides with an Xacto knife.  When doing the button holes, I found it's best to work from one side of the CP to the other, and place buttons in the holes as you cut them, to keep the overlay from shifting during the process.  Once all the holes were cut, and everything was secure with the buttons, I then cut off the excess around the outside edge.


You also mentioned you used a piece of acrylic on top of your artwork, how thick was it and was it easy to work with?

The top was actually cut for me my another member on this forum (Knievel), but I know that with the proper tools/bits and a router, it is not difficult to work with at all.


Also, did you order your marquee from the same website and sandwhich it between pieces of acrylic yourself?

I actually ordered the Marquee from Scott at MameMarquees.com.  He has a printing option called "Ultimate" which is printed on backlit vinyl, and he also cuts the plexi to match.  However, it's not terribly difficult to cut your own plexi.  I was getting anxious to get it finished and didn't feel like hassling with cutting my own.  

His service is not cheap, but he does a good job.  If you want a less expensive option, you could also have your marquee printed at Fullsizeposters.com.  The lighting properties of the photo paper are probably not going to be as good as a backlit film or vinyl, but I know many people have gotten very acceptable results going that route.

Good luck!
« Last Edit: December 04, 2009, 01:01:26 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #202 on: December 05, 2009, 03:11:31 am »
 :applaud:
Nice work. The crome t-mold looks killer.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #203 on: December 09, 2009, 11:43:01 am »
I know you said you had the side lights just sitting around...any clue where you got them...or where I could find them?

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #204 on: December 09, 2009, 12:36:57 pm »
Nice work. The crome t-mold looks killer.

Thanks Kwan-Sweden!  I was a bit torn at first as to whether I should do the chrome, but I'm very pleased with how it turned out.  I don't think chrome suits every cab, but with the paint finish and the other "bling" on this cab, it all seems to work well together.


I know you said you had the side lights just sitting around...any clue where you got them...or where I could find them?

Alcathiax, if you do a search on eBay for "luminglas" you will see lots of shapes and sizes that you can choose from.  Had some of these shapes been available when I purchased mine originally, I might have considered doing something other than round.  Luminglas can be a bit pricey though.  You can easily spend $100 or more for a pair of them.  

Good luck!
« Last Edit: December 09, 2009, 12:38:32 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #205 on: December 09, 2009, 01:18:50 pm »
Hey Alcathiax,

I purchased my 12" blue lumins from buy.com.  It ran about $130.00 total, shipping included.  They shipped fast and packaged appropriately.

They do come in all shapes and sizes now 4" 6" 12" 16" 20", as Gamester said they get pretty pricey after the 6".

I think Amazon.com has them, and any party rave website.

Gamester,

Man I though I was being innovative, I read your thread and got my bubble busted when I saw your lumins.....Great work man....Oh yes, and I will be attempting that awesome paint work.  Love it.....Just wish i could find that metallic with blue flakes in it..........

Here is my contraption

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=96162.0
   

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #206 on: December 09, 2009, 06:59:05 pm »
Finally got around to reading this entire thread! Unbelievable! Fantastic cab! My next build, I'm dumping laminate and try to match that finish! The pic with the chairs reflecting is crazy!

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #207 on: December 09, 2009, 09:45:25 pm »
Quote
My next build, I'm dumping laminate and try to match that finish! The pic with the chairs reflecting is crazy!

Paint finishes can be fantastic like this one...but laminate is pretty darned nice.  I guess it comes down to what you prefer. If you like a gloss or semi-gloss look then painting is the way to go..but for a flat/matte finish you can't beat laminate.
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Tutorials

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #208 on: December 09, 2009, 09:49:33 pm »
Wait... you have Chrome t-molding? I totally missed that!  :applaud:


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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #209 on: December 09, 2009, 10:31:32 pm »
Job well done, that thing is stunning.  :applaud:
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #210 on: December 10, 2009, 03:29:08 pm »
I have a question about you paint job. 

What type of sander did you use for the wet-sanding?  Orbital, Dual Action?

Also one of your photos shows that you streaked the cab with black before the metallic or clear coat.  I can't tell if you just sanded and it looks like that or you prepped your base with a flat black and went over it with the metallic as the metallic is not a very good filler, it's more clear with the silver flakes.


   

2016 Texas Pinball Festival - Best Arcade In Show - MKX

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #211 on: December 10, 2009, 04:59:13 pm »
Man I though I was being innovative, I read your thread and got my bubble busted when I saw your lumins.....

Heh, yeah I pretty much planned it from the beginning, and actually had the discs purchased for it 2-3 years ago.  I'm real pleased with how it turned out.  I think it will look great on your cab too!  It's turned out to be a nice diversion for people that are waiting their turn to play.   ;)

Oh yes, and I will be attempting that awesome paint work.  Love it.....Just wish i could find that metallic with blue flakes in it..........

Well, if you have the means, you could always prime and prep it, then take it to a body shop and have them spray it with whatever type of metallic you want.  I actually considered this option, and will probably consider it even more strongly next time around.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2009, 05:22:51 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #212 on: December 10, 2009, 05:05:58 pm »
Finally got around to reading this entire thread! Unbelievable! Fantastic cab! My next build, I'm dumping laminate and try to match that finish! The pic with the chairs reflecting is crazy!

I'm glad you like it.  The finish was a major headache, but I learned a lot while doing it, and now that the dust has settled and I can just sit back and enjoy it, I'm definitely glad I put in the extra effort.


Wait... you have Chrome t-molding? I totally missed that!  :applaud:

Funny.  I guess there's so many other things going on with lighting and such that it's easy to overlook, in photos at least.  The chrome really looks nice in person, and does a great job of framing all the other eye candy.


Job well done, that thing is stunning.  :applaud:

Thank you!
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #213 on: December 10, 2009, 05:20:59 pm »
What type of sander did you use for the wet-sanding?  Orbital, Dual Action?

Actually all the wet sanding was done with pure elbow grease.  Most electric palm sanders don't mix with water, and the pneumatic ones are usually too cumbersome for use in sanding a cab.


Also one of your photos shows that you streaked the cab with black before the metallic or clear coat.  I can't tell if you just sanded and it looks like that or you prepped your base with a flat black and went over it with the metallic as the metallic is not a very good filler, it's more clear with the silver flakes.

Actually that was the metallic that I started with.  It took 3-4 coats to get good coverage.  I wouldn't say the metallic is 'clear' but it is definitely more translucent than pure black paint.  In hindsight, I probably would have put a layer of black (either paint or primer) underneath beforehand.  Would have saved the expense of a few extra cans of metallic.

Just FYI, I also replied to your previous post above (so you don't inadvertently overlook it).

Good luck!
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #214 on: December 10, 2009, 05:42:33 pm »
I read both, great info....HMMM body shop.....That's actually a pretty good idea....There was a guy I just spoke too that is a mobile paint service.  Would be great if he could do it.....Gonna check into that.....

Update....No body shop will touch that with 10 foot pole....would have to know somebody who does it on the side...so for now it's good od fashioned elbow grease. 

Although I could you a black base and order some blue flakes and have hardware store mix it in for me.  Roll it on and go with your process for the clear coat..........Just a thought....
« Last Edit: December 10, 2009, 06:01:07 pm by rablack97 »
   

2016 Texas Pinball Festival - Best Arcade In Show - MKX

Gamester

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #215 on: December 10, 2009, 07:07:01 pm »
Although I could you a black base and order some blue flakes and have hardware store mix it in for me.  Roll it on and go with your process for the clear coat..........Just a thought....

The problem is, doing a rolled on metallic base will make it much more difficult to get a smooth finish in the end, because you won't be able to sand the base, and it doesn't go on nearly as smoothly as a spray.  When you're sanding your clear, there's a high probability that you'll sand through it in spots because of the the tiny 'high' spots caused by the base below.  As soon as you sand into the metallic, it's ruined, and it's do over time.

Not sure if you have a compressor and/or sprayer, but you could also just purchase your own automotive paint and spray it yourself.  Just depends how serious you are about getting the specific finish and color you want.

You might also check auto parts stores, as they often have metallic spray paint in various colors.  It's going to be more expensive than Rustoleum, but might still be a viable option.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2009, 07:13:45 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #216 on: December 11, 2009, 07:01:05 pm »
Nice cab, loving that CPO artwork.

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #217 on: December 13, 2009, 02:21:30 am »
OK Gamester where did i go wrong.  I did a test run on scrap piece of mdf for the Gamester bling finish.  All was well until I wet sanded the final clear coat.  I can't get rid of the gray haze, which is basically the sanded down clear coat. Only way to get it to disappear is to apply another coat of clear and let dry.  I have it smooth as a baby's bottom, just no mirror like bling.......Am I missing a step :banghead:
« Last Edit: December 13, 2009, 02:23:06 am by rablack97 »
   

2016 Texas Pinball Festival - Best Arcade In Show - MKX

Gamester

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #218 on: December 13, 2009, 01:42:33 pm »
I have it smooth as a baby's bottom, just no mirror like bling.......Am I missing a step :banghead:

Yep, you're missing a step...  After sanding with 2000 grit, you need to machine polish it with high quality polish/wax (I used a two step process for this), then buff it with a soft cotton cloth to get the mirror finish.  
« Last Edit: December 13, 2009, 01:47:43 pm by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #219 on: December 13, 2009, 04:36:02 pm »
Ok,

I did that, you mentioned your 2 step process in your thread, mothers for the swirls, and then the carnuba.

I think I wetsanded the clear coat too hard with the 2000 grit or my base/primer coats are not thick enough and showing the ripples of the wood....

Did a redo today, its better, but the finish it still blurry, I will post a pic tonight.......
   

2016 Texas Pinball Festival - Best Arcade In Show - MKX

Gamester

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #220 on: December 13, 2009, 09:03:07 pm »
I did that, you mentioned your 2 step process in your thread, mothers for the swirls, and then the carnuba.

I think I wetsanded the clear coat too hard with the 2000 grit or my base/primer coats are not thick enough and showing the ripples of the wood....

Did a redo today, its better, but the finish it still blurry, I will post a pic tonight.......

You definitely don't want to bear down when you're doing the final sanding.  Let the sandpaper do the work, and don't sand too deep.

Another possible problem is that it doesn't sound like you're giving the clear coat time to CURE.  Even though it may "dry" in a couple hours, it takes much longer for the molecular changes to occur that actually cure the paint.  I let mine cure for about a week before doing the final wet sanding and polishing.

Since I don't know the exact steps and time line you followed for all phases of the process, I can only speculate on what's going wrong, but it sounds like you might be rushing things a bit.
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #221 on: December 13, 2009, 10:34:31 pm »
No, your dead on, I guess the speed demon process is my problem.....But it was just a dry run on a one piece.  Cure time must be the issue.....

Here was my step by step....

1. Spray on Kilz oil based primer
2. Waited 20 mins
3. Dry Sanded with 320 Grit Sandpaper
4. Spray on Kilz oil based primer
5. Waited 20 mins
6. Dry Sanded with 320 Grit Sandpaper
7. Spray on Rustoleum flat black
8. Wait 20 mins
9. Spray on metallic
10. Wait 20 mins
11. Spray on Metallic
12. Wait 20 mins
13. Spray on metallic
14. Wait 20 mins
15. Spray on clear coat
16. Wait 30 mins
17. Wet sand with 600 grit sandpaper
18. dry off mdf
19. Spray on clear coat
20. wait 30 mins
21. wet sand 600 grit sand paper
22. dry off mdf
23. spray on clear coat
24. let sit over night
25. wet sand 2000 grit sand paper
26. polish with swirl remover
27. polish with wax
28. buff with terry cloth

I have about 80% mirror shine, guess the week cure should take care of the other 20%
« Last Edit: December 13, 2009, 11:40:49 pm by rablack97 »
   

2016 Texas Pinball Festival - Best Arcade In Show - MKX

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #222 on: December 16, 2009, 09:09:53 am »
Gamester,

Paint question, is the swirl X the equivalent to a fine grit rubbing compound.  Trying to figure out which would work better.....
   

2016 Texas Pinball Festival - Best Arcade In Show - MKX

Gamester

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #223 on: December 16, 2009, 10:34:27 am »
Paint question, is the swirl X the equivalent to a fine grit rubbing compound.  Trying to figure out which would work better.....

Rubbing Compound might be too coarse, but I'm not really sure.  Since you have a test piece, you have the luxury of experimenting.  If the RC doesn't work well, you can also try Polishing Compound.
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #224 on: December 16, 2009, 01:11:36 pm »
Went to the local Autozone, and talked to a guy who paints cars, and wordworks on the side.  He said, he prefers the Swirl X over the compound.  I explained to him the process, and he said I 'm on my way to a mirror finish.  He did add that I would need tak or tack cloth's to wipe the machine down after every wet sanding.  He said it takes all the dust and grit off. He also said keep a spray bottle handy to keep the surface wet and use a sanding block instead of bare hands.  Should know this but he said spray work area with a little water to keep the dust off your fresh paint, especially when using the aerosol can.

I'm thinking...

2 coats primer
1 coat high gloss
2 coats of metallic for the glitter effect
3 coats of clear
Cure
Swirl X
Wax
Buff with Terry Cloth
Might be able to comb my hair in the reflection if all goes well :afro:
« Last Edit: December 16, 2009, 01:15:48 pm by rablack97 »
   

2016 Texas Pinball Festival - Best Arcade In Show - MKX

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #225 on: December 27, 2009, 03:06:20 am »
My little furry companion helped me with the photo of the control panel...   ;)  Knievel cut the control panel for U360 joys, which at the time he was not familiar with.  He did a good job on the recesses, considering, and I just cleaned them up a bit using my dremel to achieve a perfect fit.  All ready for primer here...

Knievel still cuts panels?
« Last Edit: December 27, 2009, 03:08:20 am by SKiZZ »

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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [11-24-09 - HUGE update... IT IS ALIVE!!!]
« Reply #226 on: December 27, 2009, 06:53:01 am »
Gorgeous machine!  Your CP/CPO is incredible.  And I'm well aware that the effort that went into that finish is not to be taken for granted.  :applaud:  You called yourself a perfectionist, and you weren't kidding...it really paid off, too.  Beautiful work!

Is that regular chrome molding, or the gold chrome?  Hard to tell in the photos; looks gold in some, but I assume that's the lighting.  Either way, it's very impressive.  I just ordered t-molding samples, and I wondered if the chrome stuff would make a machine look too gaudy, but with the piano finish, it doesn't come off that way at all.

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Re: New Project: Gamester's "Arcade Galaxy"
« Reply #227 on: December 27, 2009, 12:03:29 pm »
Knievel still cuts panels?

SKiZZ, nah he actually cut the panel for me like 3 years ago.  I haven't seen him around these parts in quite some time.  Strange after being such an active member of the BYOAC community...


Gorgeous machine!  Your CP/CPO is incredible.  And I'm well aware that the effort that went into that finish is not to be taken for granted.  :applaud:  You called yourself a perfectionist, and you weren't kidding...it really paid off, too.  Beautiful work!

Thank you so much!  That's very flattering.  I'm glad you like it.  I have to say, it was a great learning experience, and I'm already starting to get the bug to start on a new project.  It's funny, after working on that thing for so long, I went through a sort of withdrawal when it was 'done'.  This hobby can be addictive.

Is that regular chrome molding, or the gold chrome?  Hard to tell in the photos; looks gold in some, but I assume that's the lighting.

Yeah, it's regular/silver chrome.  Taking good photos of these machines is always a challenge with regards to lighting, so it's hard to take a picture that represents all aspects of the machine accurately.


Either way, it's very impressive.  I just ordered t-molding samples, and I wondered if the chrome stuff would make a machine look too gaudy, but with the piano finish, it doesn't come off that way at all.

I was a little worried about it looking gaudy too, but I think like you basically said, the high quality finish along with the other visual elements seems to all tie together tastefully, and the chrome doesn't look out of place.  I do think the chrome could look gaudy on some cabs that may not have enough other eye catching elements to support its use.  You want the molding to accentuate the other parts of the cab, not stand out above them.  Bottom line is, if chrome molding would be the most visually interesting component of one's cab, it probably shouldn't be used...

Good luck on your project!
« Last Edit: January 01, 2010, 02:22:30 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [12-30-09 - New Boot Screen]
« Reply #228 on: December 30, 2009, 02:31:11 am »
Finally got around to 'hiding' Windows on the cab today.  In the process I put together a new boot screen to replace the default Windows one...



I think it turned out pretty good, considering Windows only allows a total of 16 colors and resolution of 640x480 for the boot screen.

A little hard to see in this small picture, but the progress bar at the top has two space invaders that scroll across during the loading sequence.  Fun stuff...   ;)

I'll probably put together a video of the cab in action in the near future.  I'm working on upgrading the computer to something a little faster, so I may wait until that's done.  Will probably be a couple weeks I reckon.
« Last Edit: December 30, 2009, 02:47:50 am by Gamester »
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Re: Gamester's ARCADE GALAXY [12-30-09 - New Boot Screen]
« Reply #229 on: December 30, 2009, 04:15:42 pm »
Good stuff,

I can't wait to get to the software piece myself, have it all in my head what I want to do.

I'm using an e-machine and whatever they do to windows does not like the progress bar to be jacked with, totally hangs up.

Might have to do something with a fresh windows install...I'll be PM'ing you on some direction on using NLite.