Main => Project Announcements => Topic started by: Ond on December 06, 2018, 01:26:42 am

Title: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on December 06, 2018, 01:26:42 am
I'm going to start construction on this cabinet early next year so I thought I'd announce it before end of year 2018.  It's based on a design I posted some years ago (and misplaced).  I really liked the shape but the original design was for an LCD, this however will be built around a 27" CRT I have.  It will run MAME on a PC for various versions of Pac-Man and a small selection of games that play well on a cocktail style cabinet.  It has no T-moulding but instead thick curved edges made from 32mm MDF.  Other features include vinyl wrap on the control panels, real timber veneered end panels and my own artwork.  Image updated to latest artwork

Here's a sample of the artwork drawn by me. The font is 'pacfont' which I downloaded, all other images are my own.

I will need to give thought to cooling and ventilation as well as speaker placement.  I'm still undecided about building a welded steel or timber frame to support the monitor but I'm favouring a steel one at the moment.

The CRT is a 27"  flat screen Panasonic TV with Component video inputs.  I'm using that with CRT Emudriver 2.0 and a Retrotek VGACTV1 VGA to Component transcoder.

I'm excited to have a project in the pipeline which uses a CRT specially to play Pac-Man on.  My kids really like simple games like Frogger etc. so I'll add that to the menu as well.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: meltman on December 06, 2018, 08:16:45 am
Looks like a really slick take on the classic cocktail cabinet.

Will be watching this one for sure.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: barrymossel on December 06, 2018, 08:58:59 am
Wow, cool design of the cabinet. Though I am not sure about the Pacman with teeth. Just doesn't look right to me.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: wp34 on December 06, 2018, 10:10:03 am
Outstanding!  I love the design.  It will look fantastic next to your RoToron build.   :cheers:

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on December 06, 2018, 02:07:27 pm
Thanks guys, this was a design I did for another member way back when I ran a little competition to name my cabinet design, I've since re-named RoToron.  The cocktail shape has evolved a little bit since then but not much.

The artwork... well any 3D versions of Pac-Man I've seen which are just a head usually have teeth, some have fangs  :lol.  Fangs etc. seem wrong but no teeth on a 3D version also looks weird so....

I may do a version without teeth on Pac-Man which also removes the eyes from the ghosts.  In game, ghosts lose their eyes when Pac-Man eats a power pellet so I'll see what that looks like.  It's early days, so feedback welcome.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: meltman on December 06, 2018, 02:23:55 pm
I like it with teeth.

My grandmother has an ancient, rare, Pac-Man squeak ball and it has teeth.

This is the exact same one I grew up playing with (not hers specifically):
https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/1982-midway-gabriel-pac-man-squeak-400201854 (https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/1982-midway-gabriel-pac-man-squeak-400201854)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: DaOld Man on December 06, 2018, 05:59:07 pm
Looks like another masterpiece on the line.
Im anxious to see how you pull off the drab look of the MDF edge without covering it with t molding, but if anyone can do it, it's you.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: leapinlew on December 06, 2018, 09:00:54 pm
Loved the no t-molding curved sides. That's gonna look great!

Feel free to tell me to buzz off, but 2 things that struck me - Pacmans eyes. Not sure if he's Asian, or squinting, but it made me take a second look. Also, the G in Legion could be easier to read.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Laythe on December 07, 2018, 03:08:52 am
Love the shape and color of the cabinet.  Those thick curves are going to be a treat for the eyes and the fingers.   :applaud:

I'll admit... I'm not in love with the side art pac.  The eyes that I think of as iconic for 3D versions of pac man, are the black ovals with a missing triangle in them - this version feels off to me, like a bootleg.  The expression, between eyes and tongue, feels slightly in the direction of a scary chatterbox cenobite version - or like those skeleton reveal drawings of cartoon characters that get a bit creepy.  If unsettling is the desired effect, nailed it.   (I hope that's helpful and constructive, and if it didn't come across that way, I apologize.)

The ghosts work for me as a neat variation on the norm.  Blurred maze, dots, sizes and colors, I like all that in your side art.

(And man I freakin love the cab design.)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Laythe on December 07, 2018, 03:23:15 am
I think it's the eyes that are tripping me up more than the tongue or the teeth.

I know it frustrates me when people make vague complaints at my art, so I tried on the kind of eyes I was thinking of and ended up with this (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=149895.0;attach=373384;image) - whether you think that approach helps is of course your call.

In any case, thanks for the preview and for bringing something new and cool to the table!

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: barrymossel on December 07, 2018, 04:45:50 am
Yeah it might have been the eyes actually. The version from Laythe seems better. But still... I guess I just don't like it in 3D.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on December 07, 2018, 06:15:51 am
I really like the critical feedback and ideas, thanks guys.

I like it with teeth.

My grandmother has an ancient, rare, Pac-Man squeak ball and it has teeth.

This is the exact same one I grew up playing with (not hers specifically):
https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/1982-midway-gabriel-pac-man-squeak-400201854 (https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/1982-midway-gabriel-pac-man-squeak-400201854)

That's what I was thinking of!  :cheers:

Looks like another masterpiece on the line.
Im anxious to see how you pull off the drab look of the MDF edge without covering it with t molding, but if anyone can do it, it's you.

I'll get it as close as I can to the render.  I think with thinner MDF it wouldn’t look so good, but the thicker curved edges are quite different if they are slick and glossy.

Loved the no t-molding curved sides. That's gonna look great!

Feel free to tell me to buzz off, but 2 things that struck me - Pacmans eyes. Not sure if he's Asian, or squinting, but it made me take a second look. Also, the G in Legion could be easier to read.

Good feedback!  Yeah I was trying for the squinty badass look.  I didn't even notice the G in Legion, agreed, it needs to be better defined.

I think it's the eyes that are tripping me up more than the tongue or the teeth.

I know it frustrates me when people make vague complaints at my art, so I tried on the kind of eyes I was thinking of and ended up with this (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=149895.0;attach=373384;image) - whether you think that approach helps is of course your call.

In any case, thanks for the preview and for bringing something new and cool to the table!

Thanks Laythe, I looked at various Pac-Man inspired art to see what had been done with 3D versions, but the simple black eye you've suggested works very well for me.

Yeah it might have been the eyes actually. The version from Laythe seems better. But still... I guess I just don't like it in 3D.

I like the 3D version with Laythe's suggestion I'm going to stick with it for now.

Taking in the suggestions, I think I've made a more Arcade suited version with updated eyes on all characters. I made the blue in the ghosts a bit lighter so they 'pop' a bit better too.   I like it better than before.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: jennifer on December 07, 2018, 08:10:26 am
That is quite a modern take on an old concept, may even try one myself ;)....https://www.powdercoating.org/page/PConWood (https://www.powdercoating.org/page/PConWood)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: morton on December 07, 2018, 09:29:14 am
I am sick of thinking about Tmolding and this is something I've often thought of since making a joystick using similar concept. Definitely gotta be double thick for a cabinet/cocktail, but the finished MDF can look awesome.

The only way it could look more awesome is if OND does it  :notworthy:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: yotsuya on December 07, 2018, 10:02:17 am
Those eyes definitely look better.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on December 07, 2018, 04:47:36 pm
Those eyes definitely look better.

Agreed.

For what it's worth (probably nothing), I don't really like the placement of the font on the side.  I wonder what it would look if you left the pac-man and ghosts exactly where they are but moved the font to the top and all on one line so it says "Pac-Man Legion" underneath the screen and separated from the art a bit.

I'm also not in love with the font... but I think it is close.  Something looks just a little off to me about it.  Maybe because it is too close to original Pac-Man cabinet font so my brain can't accept the different letters.
Instead of using a downloaded font, why not hand draw it?  It would fit with your art better and you the same letters will look slightly different and add to the "custom" look you are going for.

Love the sleek design though!   :cheers:

Like this LOL:

(https://i.imgur.com/9IjhMzy.png)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on December 09, 2018, 01:48:51 pm
I like the idea of bringing the title together in one line but it seemed too big a gap in your example javeryh.  I had a really close look at the original font vs the imitation font and then I went to work on a version that's very close.  The original was three fonts overlayed on each other, slightly offset, with yellow on top.  I've duplicated the three colors but made red the top one. I gave it a gentle curve because dead straight seemed wrong to me as well.

I've updated the original cabinet render to show the current art version.  I'm happy with the art, especially after the feedback - thanks!  The next step with this project will be to design construction plans based on the concept render.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Malenko on December 09, 2018, 09:48:51 pm
you know you wanna give pacman buck teeth.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: talkgeek on December 11, 2018, 06:46:30 pm
WOW - as always - following with baited breath.. (and a fair bit of impatience)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on January 09, 2019, 05:06:02 am
Returning from a restful holiday, I am keen to work on my various projects (including RoToron of course).  I've spent much of the last few days just getting my workshop in order.  I flipped the TV destined for use in this cabinet on its back today and hooked up the transcoder to a PC.

I'm very impressed with the combination of GroovyMAME, Transcoder unit and CRT emudriver.  Running games smoothly - no audio glitches!-at their native resolution on a large crisp CRT really took me back.  I sat on my low stool with a TV on its back playing various games for a good hour or so, completely transported - magic!  Anyway, now that I know the system will work, I can get on with cabinet construction.

Much thanks to Calamity for breathing new life into MAME and making golden age classics live on across a variety of CRT based builds.  I will detail the particular settings which work on this build.  I am a relative newb to these CRT applications, so still learning as I go.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: DaOld Man on January 09, 2019, 06:54:05 am
Im probably jumping ahead here, and I hope you will forgive me, but how do you plan to get that polished look on the MDF edge, without T Molding?
The render you posted looks like the edge is as clean as the sides.
Ive found the edge of the MDF to look ugly, and it looks like it can come apart in the form of dust after a while.
Im interested because of a project i need to finish up, but I would really like to not have to use T Molding on it.
Im using 1/2" (12.7 mm)  MDF on my project.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on January 10, 2019, 03:36:34 am
Im probably jumping ahead here, and I hope you will forgive me, but how do you plan to get that polished look on the MDF edge, without T Molding?
The render you posted looks like the edge is as clean as the sides.
Ive found the edge of the MDF to look ugly, and it looks like it can come apart in the form of dust after a while.
Im interested because of a project i need to finish up, but I would really like to not have to use T Molding on it.
Im using 1/2" (12.7 mm)  MDF on my project.

It's a good question.  Sexy renders are all well and good.  Achieving them in the real world is another thing entirely. Getting MDF (or any wood) up to the standard shown in the render is by way of my surface prep and painting method, which I've used throughout my projects.  MDF edges are very ragged and porous.  Using high build automotive primer (like in my video tutorial), the ragged spiky surface is transformed after several coats and sanding to a hard plastic like surface.  The process puts a tough shell over the MDF, which can then be spray-painted and polished.

A few other members here have successfully used this approach on their projects.  Apart from using the right automotive primer and paint, success depends on a fair bit of effort and technique.  See my tutorial for lots of details covering these things.

A quick few coats of non-automotive primer and a coat or two of paint will NOT achieve that look.  It will be rough and nasty, as you would expect.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on January 10, 2019, 11:13:43 pm
Today I de-cased the tube from the TV I'm using.  I needed to measure the distance between the mount holes on the tube and I want to do some maintenance on the main board by way of cap replacements.

I discharged the anode and the big power caps and then disassembled everything from the case. I removed the neck-board from the tube as well.

As you can see it's a really nice flat 27" Panasonic tube in very good condition.

I want to retain the TV's screen bezel for later so I cut this away from the rest of the TV cabinet.

Here is one of the mount holes I mentioned.

So now I have the tube's dimensions including mount point details, I'm going to get stuck into the construction design based on the concept render.  I'll order some replacement caps from the Service Book parts list in the meantime as well.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Nephasth on January 10, 2019, 11:28:34 pm
Love me a decased CRT... :drool
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on January 12, 2019, 06:19:47 am
Love me a decased CRT... :drool

Heh, who else but us BYOAC peoples would get excited at the sight of a CRT....  Well they are getting rarer and rarer these days.

I worked on other arcade projects today until it got too hot in the workshop.  Then I sat down and gave some thought to my construction approach for this project.  The design I came up with  hangs the CRT by the mount holes in a frame.  All the weight from the frame is supported by the flat sides of the cab.  The top Bezel can be removed to allow the CRT to be fitted or removed.  The build plans have the cab slightly taller than the concept render (for seating ergonomics) but they are pretty close.

Here's an exploded view of the vanity basin for our bathroom the cabinet.  You can see how the parts fit (in theory).

Next I'll cut the supporting frame for the CRT.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: retro4ever on January 14, 2019, 02:33:16 am
Looks awesome. If you decide to add Pacman Battle Royale to the game list, I recommend the pacbrcade mod for Namco Museum on Steam. It will fix this annoying borders issue with the game that will occur if you don't use it.

I am not good at Pacman but made one of my cheaper stick builds 4way just to be able to play that and a few others on occasion for a better feel.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on February 03, 2019, 01:14:30 am
Looks awesome. If you decide to add Pacman Battle Royale to the game list, I recommend the pacbrcade mod for Namco Museum on Steam. It will fix this annoying borders issue with the game that will occur if you don't use it.

I am not good at Pacman but made one of my cheaper stick builds 4way just to be able to play that and a few others on occasion for a better feel.

Thanks!  Yeah I'd like to add all the possible variations of Pac Man to this machine so I appreciate the tip.  I'm not good at Pac Man either, not much of a gamer for that matter, but I do like hanging around people that are!

It's been sooo hot around here lately I told my boss I was taking a week off to go hiking somewhere cooler near the coast.  I've just returned from five days spent here:

After a week of no cars, almost no people, just beach and forests, I'm re-energised. It's still damn hot but I'll press on anyway.

I wanted 1:1 scale cutting plans mainly because of some of the curves on this design that I have to hand cut.  My design process goes something like this:

1. Create photo realistic concept drawings to completely visualise the finished design.
2. Create construction concept from initial drawings to work through the approach to the build.
3. Create precise cutting plans from the construction concept to fabricate cutting templates from (to be used with a flush-trim router).
a. Transfer concept from 3D application into MS Visio.
b. Save Visio drawings as scale accurate PDFs
c. Print PDFs at 1:1 scale.

Here's the result which I'm standing on to indicate the size.

I always check the dimensions to make sure the printer has followed my instructions.  Happily on this occasion they were correct but it doesn’t always work out that way  :-\

I've also purchased the 18mm Marine Ply that I'm going to cut the frame for supporting the CRT in.  MDF is not the right choice for this component.  I'll use what’s left over for the base plate for the cab.  It's going to be a very solid and heavy cab, I'm fine with that.

More on this and my other projects over the next few days.....

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on February 04, 2019, 08:38:30 pm

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Laythe on February 05, 2019, 04:15:36 am
Wow, that is going to be a nice tight assembly.  CRT couldn't be any bigger, cabinet couldn't be any smaller, and you're taking neat advantage of the taper of the tube.

Looking good!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on February 06, 2019, 08:23:43 pm
So I know this is a bit off-topic but where do you learn how to do all of this stuff?  I have no idea how to use a computer and it feels like it is too late to learn.  Would be nice to know how to model stuff or use photoshop or something but every time I watch a tutorial my eyes gloss over and I'm lost within 5 minutes!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on February 07, 2019, 08:55:27 am
Wow, that is going to be a nice tight assembly.  CRT couldn't be any bigger, cabinet couldn't be any smaller, and you're taking neat advantage of the taper of the tube.

Looking good!

Thanks Laythe, this cabinet is all about enjoying the CRT gaming experience, something that is lacking in my other cabinet designs.  I have some joinery details to work out but that will be best done during actual construction.

So I know this is a bit off-topic but where do you learn how to do all of this stuff?  I have no idea how to use a computer and it feels like it is too late to learn.  Would be nice to know how to model stuff or use photoshop or something but every time I watch a tutorial my eyes gloss over and I'm lost within 5 minutes!

I know what you mean about getting bored trying to watch tutorials.  I find that having a specific goal in mind which you want to get to via technology helps with the learning of that technology.  For example, I wanted to use Arduino technology in a project to do something very specific. I had to research and learn how to achieve that.  I didn't bother with trying to learn everything about Arduinos, just about the function I needed.  Does that make sense? You can apply that to any other learning including computers.  It has to be interesting and also useful. You can build on that knowledge a bit at a time....much like this hobby.

I'm using these Child Seat harness mounts for another purpose:

These will enable me to lower the CRT (or raise it again) into the cabinet (using a pulley).  I'll soon be flipping the CRT over and hoisting it up using these anchor points.  You can see I've re-taped the degaussing coil/cable into place now that the mounting frame is attached to the CRT.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Mike A on February 07, 2019, 09:08:51 am
It is refreshing to see a CRT project with an original yet classic design. I ---smurfette--- about how much space cocktails take up, but I like them. I eat lunch on my Asteroids Deluxe.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: jennifer on February 07, 2019, 08:14:53 pm
Speaking of need to know research, Jenn was working on a project and totally thought of you and this build when I saw this, Must watch when you get a miniute there Mr OND. ;) ... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQU5sSKx9ug (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQU5sSKx9ug)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on February 07, 2019, 09:07:22 pm
It is refreshing to see a CRT project with an original yet classic design. I ---smurfette--- about how much space cocktails take up, but I like them. I eat lunch on my Asteroids Deluxe.

Thanks Mike, guys like you with game rooms and a good collection of arcade machines really inspire me.  I aim to one day find a property with outbuildings or a big shed which I can convert to a dedicated game room\bar\entertainment area.  The projects I'm working on now will go in there with at least one genuine restored machine and a pinball or two.  Maybe Yots will let us check out his game room if I bring him something  ;D

Speaking of need to know research, Jenn was working on a project and totally thought of you and this build when I saw this, Must watch when you get a miniute there Mr OND. ;) ... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQU5sSKx9ug (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQU5sSKx9ug)

Thanks Jenn, that guy has some lovely machines!  Actually I intend to use some of the aspects of his approach in bending the shapes for this cabinet.  The end panels of this cabinet will be quite thin.  They will be decorative only supporting no weight at all.  Also they need to be removable for maintenance access.  My bending method will seem really primitive compared to the guy in the video BUT I've used it before and it’s very effective.  I'll be bending thin MDF using steam over a curved metal form and then later veneering that with quality timber veneer (again bending the veneer with steam).  It's totally cheating but should look very nice if all goes well.  I'll post up that process when I get to it.

Today I hoisted up the CRT on my 1000Kg hoist pulley.  Ackkkk!  I had to balance that heavy bastard in my lap while I hooked it up, one slip and goodbye CRT!  Luckily that didn't happen.  I can now adjust the height of it to match the plan and check ergonomics with my workshop stool:

I'll need to cut 20mm deep channels into the thick sides of the cabinet to allow those mount points some clearance. Good thing I have 32mm to work with.  The MDF sheet cuts have been ordered and should be ready next Wednesday.  In the mean time I'll work on the cutting templates.

Here you can see my ratty old stool (yes sometimes I paint stuff on it) next to the suspended CRT:

Tomorrow I need to work on RoToron for most of the day.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: opt2not on February 07, 2019, 09:24:23 pm
So I know this is a bit off-topic but where do you learn how to do all of this stuff?  I have no idea how to use a computer and it feels like it is too late to learn.  Would be nice to know how to model stuff or use photoshop or something but every time I watch a tutorial my eyes gloss over and I'm lost within 5 minutes!
As Ond said, take each task one by one, and try to figure out how to achieve them as they come up in your project.

Trying to just aimlessly watch tutorials is too vague and unspecific, and quite frankly not a great way to learn.  There is so many different ways of achieving things, say in Photoshop, that a lot of the time it's trial and error, practice and exploration.  If anything, watch tutorials on the basic interfacing of the software. How to navigate it, the core processes i,.e. learning about layers, clipping masks, smart objects, etc...  but for the most part your best way to learn is by applying it to a goal you want to achieve.

And don't get discouraged if you're not a master at it after a while.  Artists spend years learning the software, and even then you don't everything about the software. For example I've used PS for over 20 years, and I still learn new things to this day.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: jennifer on February 09, 2019, 12:25:18 pm
I love the way you got that monitor hanging there, Disaster not to be tolerated, with those big chains, but tempting fate by hanging that neck just off the floor :cheers:... Yes that guy does have some nice equipment, but it could obviously be done with little more than a table saw and a joiner out in the backyard for us common folks, The point (I guess) was to use the cabinet as monitor  structure, hiding the bolts behind the CP, without using an internal frame, But actually it could also be said, it would look good as flat panels too giving a old vs modern feel,... Anyway Jennifer doesn't want to confuse, So excited to see what you come up with 8).
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on February 10, 2019, 03:41:32 am
@ opt2not - good advice. It's never too late to learn new things.  I like teaching myself new skills using the internet.  I've had to learn a bunch of stuff about CRTs and interfacing with them for this project.

@ jennifer - I enjoy working with veneers, I think the combination of real timber with the smooth yellow panels should look really nice.  MDF has no grain since it’s just compacted fibres but it does have good retention for any shape that you give it using some moisture and heat.  There will be no bolts or screws visible when the cabinet is finished.

I spent only a little time on this today, instead focusing on other projects.  I did cut away all the unneeded plastic from the original TV bezel so I can use it in this project.  I could cut a new one from MDF but why do that when I have a perfectly usable one from the TV?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on February 17, 2019, 06:24:37 am
Thick MDF cut to panel size arrives:

Outside the box thinking for cutting large clean curves.  I'm postioning aluminium strip in place onto the plan with some nails. Now you can see why I needed 1:1 scale plans:

Tape one side of the strip against nails with very strong gaffer tape:

Flush trim cut agianst the curve with my router to form the cutting template for the much thicker MDF plate:

Break my jig saw blade in the thick MDF sheet.  Work finished for the day, time for a beer!

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Arroyo on February 17, 2019, 08:31:54 am
Tape one side of the strip against nails with very strong gaffer tape:

Flush trim cut agianst the curve with my router to form the cutting template for the much thicker MDF plate:

I was wondering if anyone had done something like this.  After watching a bunch of YouTube woodworking videos, I was planning on doing something similar to cut my curves for the sides.  I was going to get a thin piece of polycarbonate plastic and use a bunch of small L-brackets to form the shape against the printed plans, then use the flush trim bit.  Curious to see how this works for you.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: wp34 on February 17, 2019, 11:31:31 am
Tape one side of the strip against nails with very strong gaffer tape:

Flush trim cut agianst the curve with my router to form the cutting template for the much thicker MDF plate:

I was wondering if anyone had done something like this.  After watching a bunch of YouTube woodworking videos, I was planning on doing something similar to cut my curves for the sides.  I was going to get a thin piece of polycarbonate plastic and use a bunch of small L-brackets to form the shape against the printed plans, then use the flush trim bit.  Curious to see how this works for you.

That's pretty slick.  I have a project I'll be starting as soon as the weather warms here and I may try something like this for the curve I need to replicate.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Laythe on February 18, 2019, 03:37:27 am
Hah, that's neat!

Reminds me of pinning the balsa parts directly onto the plans to build model airplanes.   :)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on February 19, 2019, 08:27:05 pm
Hah, that's neat!

Reminds me of pinning the balsa parts directly onto the plans to build model airplanes.   :)

I love using the 1:1 plans, apart from setting up cutting templates it lets me keep a quick visual check on parts I've cut.  BTW I didn’t try to bend the aluminium strip to the shape but rather I let the metal stay under tension to produce it's own smooth curve.  A bit like a Bezier spline curve if you know what that is.

Here's the way the cutting panned out using this technique.  First I finished the rough cuts (leaving a quarter inch or so around the outline) with my jigsaw:

Next I flush trimed along my template using a half inch top bearing flush trim bit.  I bought this bit brand new for this project - cuts nice and sharp!

I flipped the template over to cut the other side.  I'd never get a smooth square cut like this using my jigsaw, especially this PHAT MDF:

Here's the finished piece so far.  I've also cut its twin out.  The photo makes it look wider at the top than it really is.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on February 26, 2019, 09:09:37 pm
Moving along .... Today I cut one of the control panel supports (that's what I'm calling it).  Again using the shaped aluminum formed cutting templates:

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on February 27, 2019, 07:32:32 pm
I snuck in a few more cuts before it got too hot here today.  Now that's a chunky control panel!

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Arroyo on February 27, 2019, 08:12:50 pm
How you manage to juggle 3 projects at once, especially at this level of precision is mind boggling.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Laythe on February 27, 2019, 08:27:18 pm
This is fun to watch.   :cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Alejo I on March 01, 2019, 09:19:05 am
OND putting out actual metalwork for templates and I can't even get to finish this :censored: cardboard model I've had in mind for over a year...
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on March 02, 2019, 12:09:45 am
How you manage to juggle 3 projects at once, especially at this level of precision is mind boggling.

It might seem like a lot going on but the variety of things keeps me in the workshop, more so than if I just had the one project.  I walk in there and pick out the thing that interests me there and then.  By the end of the week I try to realize progress across all my projects.

This is fun to watch.   :cheers:

For my part it's also fun to work on straight up woodwork when I can.  Solving various design challenges is what I love about the hobby.  I suspect you do too.

OND putting out actual metalwork for templates and I can't even get to finish this :censored: cardboard model I've had in mind for over a year...

You can do it mate!  Get that cardboard model built.  Just rough it in with masking tape and an Exacto knife.  I LOVE cardboard mock-ups like Neph loves a good nuded up CRT.  They are just the best way to get a feel for ergonomics, playability etc.

I got an early start this morning.  There was a strange, hazy, orange glow to everything as I worked outside.  Like the weather was letting me know some roasting hot torture was on the way.  I got to a certain point, and I'm sorry but it was just too damn hot.  I thought maybe I could make some progress on RoToron too, but the idea of climbing into my hazmat suit (for fibre glass work) for a steaming sweat bath just didn't push my buttons.  More than the usual pics to make up it for it.  :cheers:

Attaching the cutting template to form the second CP panel, the pencilled x's are to remind me NOT to route around those curved corners:

pre-drilling the holes in the CP before flush trim cutting with my router.  Here's a saftey tip:  Don't start the router and then lower the bit it into the button hole to cut. Position the router bit in the hole AND THEN start the router.  You risk seriously horrible things happening if you drop a spinning router bit into a tight space in timber.  If it so much as kisses any surface before you have it stable....well the results are scary and nasty.  There will be no post of OND (several years ago) throwing his router across his back yard in a blind screaming rage after doing just that...  :laugh2:

Here I'm marking out the exact height the control panel supports need to be to ensure the CP sits high enough to clear knees etc.

The control panels sit nice and square on the supports.  The depth dimensions for the cabinet (and thus the end panel sizing) will be worked out as I construct the cabinet.

After sticking down the 1:1 plan onto the top panel cutting template I rounded off the corners and then cut a rough cut-out with my jigsaw in the usual way.  I use a spray adhesive to coat the template.  After positioning the plan along one edge I smooth it onto the adhesive surface with my cork sanding block.  This works really well.

That's it.  The heat won and I headed for the fridge and a frosty pint of beer. Soon I'll be rounding all those edges as per the concept render. Tomorrow is another day.   :cheers:

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on March 02, 2019, 09:17:57 am
Really nice Ond.  I am jealous that you are complaining of the heat - I woke up to about 5" of snow this morning.  Ugh.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on March 03, 2019, 12:14:27 am
Really nice Ond.  I am jealous that you are complaining of the heat - I woke up to about 5" of snow this morning.  Ugh.

Thanks, javeryh, it's hard to get much done in either extreme isn't it?

I try and progress things in the cooler mornings each day.  The main cutting and routing is nearly done.

Here's the template for the top panel attached to the MDF sheet for routing.

These nails positioned on the corners of the line drawing are to make reference holes in the panel which I'll use later as a guide for rebating a cut-out into the panel for the glass.

The growing pile of parts...now added to by the top panel.  This will also be rebated on its underside to fit CRT monitor and monitor bezel.  You can just see the monitor bezel positioned underneath the panel for reference.

Soon the rounding over of edges...soon.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Arroyo on March 03, 2019, 12:34:30 am
Since you seem to be a router hound (me too), what are you using to make your rounded edges?  I had to use a round over bit on some pieces and use it as a template, but curious to know what your solution is?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on March 03, 2019, 01:28:52 am
Since you seem to be a router hound (me too), what are you using to make your rounded edges?  I had to use a round over bit on some pieces and use it as a template, but curious to know what your solution is?

I'm going to use a 5/8” round over bit with bearing (1/2” shank).  I'll set the penetration depth to use the full radius of the bit and then flush trim along all applicable edges (both sides) to achieve the curves as per the render concept.  Fairly straightforward really.  I like to use bits with ½” shanks when possible.  They are just stronger than ¼” and give me more confidence for heavy work like this.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on March 16, 2019, 09:38:17 pm
Rounded off panels,  I’ll hold off rounding the main side panels until I’ve used them for curved forms.  More on that in the next post.

Cutting template for CP cut-out.

Steel plate CP insert for controls.

Quick test fit before committing to sealing it in.

Plate sealed in fiberglass after joystick bolts fitted.

Cleaned up CP after sanding/ bondo fill and initial primer coat.  Cut back hard to get everything nice and flush.

Beauty primer coats begin....  I'll cut an access hole for wiring through the rear edge and into the control cut-out.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: J_K_M_A_N on March 17, 2019, 08:43:06 am
As always, that looks amazing. If you had a live web cam, I would probably watch that for hours. :) Incredible work!

J_K_M_A_N
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: wp34 on March 17, 2019, 09:28:53 am
As always, that looks amazing. If you had a live web cam, I would probably watch that for hours. :) Incredible work!

J_K_M_A_N

Ditto.  I'm not a big video guy but if you had a Youtube channel I would subscribe.

Excellent work.   :applaud:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Jimbo on March 17, 2019, 10:49:24 am
Niiiice work... :)

Is that joystick hole big enough for the joystick to move?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on March 17, 2019, 11:09:24 am
Wow Ond... looks like it was made by a machine.  So smooth...   :applaud:

I'm also wondering if the joystick hole is wide enough but I'm sure you've thought of it.  So you are making 2 of these I assume?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on March 17, 2019, 06:13:37 pm
As always, that looks amazing. If you had a live web cam, I would probably watch that for hours. :) Incredible work!

J_K_M_A_N

Ditto.  I'm not a big video guy but if you had a Youtube channel I would subscribe.

Excellent work.   :applaud:

Thanks fellas, I could do some videos of stuff that might be useful.  I'll see what I can do.

Niiiice work... :)

Is that joystick hole big enough for the joystick to move?

Wow Ond... looks like it was made by a machine.  So smooth...   :applaud:

I'm also wondering if the joystick hole is wide enough but I'm sure you've thought of it.  So you are making 2 of these I assume?

Thanks guys, I'm getting closer to the look I visualised for this cabinet, as always it’s all in the surface preparation before paint goes on.  The joystick hole is a close fit, probably too close once all the surface finish is done.  The test fit of the joystick was fine, with the stick clearing the hole when pushed in any direction but I'll enlarge it before paint goes on. I have to buy an additional hole cutter for metal.  The small hole did allow me to perfectly align the stick for bolt placement, so it's all good.  I am making two CPs, the other one is still at the pre-fiberglass stage (with steel plate fitted).

I've been teaching myself all there is to know about applying 3M Vinyl wrap.  That stuff is designed to adhere to a highly polished automotive paint finish so it should work really well on these panels.
I've also come up with what I think is a cool (pun not intended) way to ventilate this cabinet. Airflow will be fan forced from the base plate of the cabinet using the biggest PC fan I can find, flow up around the base of the CRT tube and out underneath each CP.  The vents under each CP will double as speaker grills of a sort.  I'll concept that up in a render so you can all see what I'm on about.

:cheers:

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: jennifer on March 17, 2019, 07:07:55 pm
Great choice with the wrap, That will bring this up to the modern conceptual I would imagine you are going for...Heat rises, good use of physics, Jenn dont need to be spoon fed image cad to see awesome. ;)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on June 20, 2019, 12:50:44 pm
Any updates Ond?  Or is it the middle of winter and impossible to work?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on June 20, 2019, 07:21:40 pm
Any updates Ond?  Or is it the middle of winter and impossible to work?

No updates javeryh.  I've been feeling a bit glum lately.  A few domestic issues and lousy weather.  I don't normally get much done on woodworking projects over Winter, it's difficult to work outside when it rains all the time and I have to rug up in ten layers just to stay warm.  But I've been thinking....I'd like to come out the other side of Winter with some progress on my projects.  Progress with anything is more about state of mind than the weather.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Arroyo on June 20, 2019, 07:47:58 pm
I’m still going through my post Zapcon OND withdrawals.  Miss you bud, always looking forward to any updates, keeps us all inspired.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Laythe on June 21, 2019, 02:46:15 am

Hang in there; it'll still be there when you are ready, and so will we.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: jennifer on June 21, 2019, 07:49:49 am
Adversity I find is a driving force, The worse the weather is the harder I work, People hate on Jenn? Awesome, cause then I binge up a storm, Don't like to see anyone in a slump however cause life is much to short...That/Those machines you are building there Mr Ond are going to live on long after you are gone, a true testimony to the builder...Hope you can find some solice in that.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on June 21, 2019, 09:07:54 am
Any updates Ond?  Or is it the middle of winter and impossible to work?

No updates javeryh.  I've been feeling a bit glum lately.  A few domestic issues and lousy weather.  I don't normally get much done on woodworking projects over Winter, it's difficult to work outside when it rains all the time and I have to rug up in ten layers just to stay warm.  But I've been thinking....I'd like to come out the other side of Winter with some progress on my projects.  Progress with anything is more about state of mind than the weather.

I hear you.  Even though it is technically summer where I am (NJ) it feels like it has been raining for a month.  Hard to get anything done and it can really affect your mood.  Hang in there.   :cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on September 29, 2019, 02:40:13 am
Hey look this happening...  Gotta say, my new workshop has me all keen again.

Thanks for the encouragement folks.  I know it was 3 months ago when you posted comments, but reading it again is a good morale boost. Jenn, I like your attitude to getting things done and the kind words about my creations outlasting me. I didn't even consider that fact.  I better make em to last eh?  I have something you may be interested in too.  It's time for me to get on with the curved panels on this cabinet.  So the curved end panels won't support anything but they do need to measure up to my design render.  They have a nice curve and when finished, the appearance of real timber.  Let's see if I can meet the requirement.  Here we go.

I'm going to use thin MDF as a base for these.  Like I said the panels are not supporting anything, just attaching to each end of the cabinet around the control panels.

Cut the right size panel.  The rain today didn't stop me!  Hooked up my saw table with dust extraction and gave weather the middle finger.

Apply steam to the panel and pin it to the side panel curves.  This is just to encourage the MDF to curve the way I want it.

Once the MDF is nicely dry again I've attached some carpet edge strip to each end and then tensioned them together with string.  The rigid edging ensures an even curve when the assembly is under tension.

To set the curve permanently and to make the panel much stronger/rigid I'm going to cover the inside face of it in fiberglass.  Bah fiberglass, I hate working with it but I LOVE the results once the work is done.

Here it is with wet fiberglass/resin coat.  I did the actual work outside once the rain eased off.  It’s way too messy to do inside.

I think tomorrow I'll go hunt down some nice real wood veneer for this project (these panels).  Once the fiberglass sets I can trim up the panel and then glue on the veneer.

Can anyone please tell me the dimensions of a two player coin panel, in particular the depth?  That is, for a coin plate with two mechs.  My research on various vendor sites has not been successful.  In more simple terms what clearance do I need to allow for the assembly behind a panel the coin plate is fitted to?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Arroyo on September 29, 2019, 08:30:43 am
(https://media3.giphy.com/media/SS7hMXMCa3F5zlZwNa/giphy.gif?cid=4d1e4f298aeefe50996d3aeafb42530a28406ce5b8870219&rid=giphy.gif)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Laythe on September 29, 2019, 05:45:03 pm
Nice!  Love that approach to curved panels.  This thing is going to be awesome.

Great to see the new shop getting used, and to have you back as a frequent contributor.   :cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on October 05, 2019, 08:47:32 am
@ Arroyo -  ;D some of em I get from you.  I've figured out a way to allow good airflow through and out of the cab as well as providing speaker cutouts.  Under each CP I'm going have a cutout which has a series of fins across each.  Thanks for the idea for that shape.  :cheers:

@ Laythe - thanks, I'm hopping between projects, there will be more on the others as well.  :cheers:

Artwork and final geometry for this cabinet is just about where I want it.  As I build it I modify or fine tune various things.  Here's a new take on the artwork.  More 2D.  Original font color.  Better I think.

I worked a bit more on one of the curved panels today.

Cut out and flush trim the supporting ribs for the curve from marine ply.

Fasten all the ribs together.  Drills holes and check they all match.

This is how they will sit on the inside of each side panel.

Attach the panel to the ribs.

Check for shape and fit against the panel.

Apply contact glue to panel and wood veneer.

Here's the panel after the veneer is stuck down, trimmed and lightly sanded.  Note this is not the final color.  The veneer will be stained with rosewood stain to match the current design render.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Nephasth on October 05, 2019, 11:26:26 am
The veneer will be stained with rosewood stain to match the current design render.

Nice nod to the original Midway cocktail design. :cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on October 05, 2019, 10:10:24 pm
The veneer will be stained with rosewood stain to match the current design render.

Nice nod to the original Midway cocktail design. :cheers:

Yeah they did have that color timber style panels.  :cheers: I've updated the first post concept render, but I'll post it here too, saves people flipping back to page 1.  I've found a coin panel with dimensions and available here in Australia. Once I had the dimensions I could draw it up and position it in the 3D Model to make sure the mechs clear the CRT.  The CRT is a tight fit in this cab but this coin plate fits no problem.  I'm happy with the overall colors and art now.  More soon.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: opt2not on October 06, 2019, 01:57:47 am
Damn sexy concept art rendering you got there, Ond.  :applaud:  :cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Mike A on October 06, 2019, 02:05:33 am
:cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Arroyo on October 06, 2019, 08:39:45 am

Thanks for the idea for that shape.  :cheers:

I’m pretty sure I got my idea after seeing your rib structure for the head of Rotoron :laugh:.  That’s what I love about this place is the inspiration and reminder of good ideas.

Question:  won’t that roughly 1/4” curves side (even with fiberglass reinforcement) be a bit thin to tackle the jerky movements and leverage of someone playing on the joysticks?  I assume there’s some additional support for the control panel on the inside?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: jennifer on October 06, 2019, 01:55:17 pm
The beauty of this is the clean modern lines, and apparent lack of traditional hardware (IE: carriage bolt heads) And now the curve becomes a factor in C/p strength...I am sure The insanity that is OND has a plan fitting of said problem, But at this point Jenn would have to say steel...heavy Gage rails running from C/p to C/p also doubling as a monitor cradle, and extending to the bottom for lateral stress...Love the build so exciting!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on October 06, 2019, 02:11:55 pm
Damn sexy concept art rendering you got there, Ond.  :applaud:  :cheers:

Thanks opt2not, I thought the geometry was good but the art/color scheme needed some work. Finding a suitable coin plate helped me evolve it a bit further.   :cheers:

:cheers:

:cheers:  :cheers:

Thanks for the idea for that shape.  :cheers:

I’m pretty sure I got my idea after seeing your rib structure for the head of Rotoron :laugh:.  That’s what I love about this place is the inspiration and reminder of good ideas.

Question:  won’t that roughly 1/4” curves side (even with fiberglass reinforcement) be a bit thin to tackle the jerky movements and leverage of someone playing on the joysticks?  I assume there’s some additional support for the control panel on the inside?

Indeed, my thoughts about the forum exactly.  It's a bit of an illusion looking at the render but the CPs don't actually connect to, or rest on the curved sides at all. They are supported by the fat MDF cross pieces each of which is bolted to the MDF 'front' and 'back' of the cab.  The main supporting strength of these cross pieces is near where the CP appears to join to the curved sides.  See this pic from earlier in the thread to see what I mean.  I'll cut the leading edges of each CP to fit snug against the curved sides as well.

Each CP will attach to these cross pieces using bolts from underneath which go into threaded inserts in each CP. I'm going to use lots of threaded inserts on this cab.  The thick MDF panels are well suited to them.

The beauty of this is the clean modern lines, and apparent lack of traditional hardware (IE: carriage bolt heads) And now the curve becomes a factor in C/p strength...I am sure The insanity that is OND has a plan fitting of said problem, But at this point Jenn would have to say steel...heavy Gage rails running from C/p to C/p also doubling as a monitor cradle, and extending to the bottom for lateral stress...Love the build so exciting!

Aww thanks Jenn.  Hey, you know what, the steel rails thing is a great idea.  I could rebate those supporting braces in the pic above and drop some steel rails in there for added strength.  They are pretty beefy though.  The Monitor which is fitted with a timber collar will sit directly in rebates at the top of the thick front/back panels.  All the weight of the CRT is on these panels. Much stronger support than the plastic case it came from.  ;D
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Arroyo on October 07, 2019, 12:11:14 pm
See this pic from earlier in the thread to see what I mean.  I'll cut the leading edges of each CP to fit snug against the curved sides as well.

Makes total sense, good solution.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: wp34 on October 07, 2019, 02:18:00 pm

That is tight!  Looking forward to seeing what that looks like completed.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on October 10, 2019, 09:29:44 pm
@ wp34 - it's the most elegant solution to the problem I could think of.  Those fins will probably be cut from black acrylic :cheers:.

Filling the grain on the curved panel.  If I was going for a more wood textured look I wouldn't bother with this step. In this case I'm going for a furniture grade, polished piano gloss finish.

After sanding back the filler to wood again, the grain is filled and surface ready for stain.

A little stain goes a long way.  This is the closest I could find in terms of color.

Applying the stain with a padded cloth applicator.  The applicator ensues an even finish that's not too dark.

Here it is after drying.  Its a bit dull and flat now, but several coats of clear varnish and some polishing will bring out all the deep color and grain.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: rave0035 on October 11, 2019, 09:36:56 pm
Can you explain what you did with the filler?  I've never seen that tactic before...

Mike
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Drnick on October 12, 2019, 08:05:47 am
Can you explain what you did with the filler?  I've never seen that tactic before...

Mike

I think I can answer that, he infilled the grain by coating all of the veneer in a thin layer of filler, he then sanded it all back down so the grain could be seen but you couldn't feel it.  Doing this gives a beautifully smooth finish which he will need for the clear coat and mirror finish to come  :applaud: :applaud: :applaud:  This will pay off in spades if only for the ease of dusting in the future.  There is little worse than trying to dust something with a feel-able grain in it :)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: jennifer on October 12, 2019, 04:25:25 pm
You may want to notice he put it on thin and even before he sanded it, the filler (even stainable) will absorb differently than the wood and has serious potential for a blotchy streaky mismatched finish...Another alternative would be use the filler, then clear it, then float your stain on top, this allows to blend a little easier, but since your not staining the wood it winds up being a considerable lighter shade of finish.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on October 16, 2019, 07:06:22 pm
First clear coat went onto the curved panel today revealing a nice deep color and grain.  Once this is dry I'll sand back and apply at least two more coats.  The second curved side is under way and construction of the base of the cab has begun. Threaded inserts are great for the purpose in this instance.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on February 27, 2020, 06:20:15 pm
When you have to search for your own project you know it's been a while........

This is the project I'm currently lovin.

Built this "PC” to run Groovymame on.  Graphics card is one of the recommended Radeon series to suit CRT Emudriver 2.0.  The motherboard is a small but powerful Gigabyte gaming board with on-board-SSD.  A much less powerful board would have done just fine but I am restricted by what I can fit into the cab.  Acrylic sheet I had lying around served well to build a chassis out of.

Here's the coin plate (as per the design render) that's going in to the cab.  I have to say I'm a bit dissapointed by the build quality of the mechanical mechs that came with it.  I may replace these with electronic enabled mechs.  The plate itself is ok.

Cabinet construction is moving toward being able to fit the 27" inch CRT I have.  I'm glad I've sorted out the software side of things in terms of Mame build etc.  Now I need to focus on component location within the cab and some testing to make sure everything works as it should.  This cab will run a very limited set of games including most Pac-Man releases and a few others.  I'm almost tempted to go really minimal and do away with a frontend altogether.  I was thinking of just having some dipswitches to select the game on boot.  There will be no visible Windows boot up as I'm controlling power-on sequence with Arduino.  Much less easy to switch between games but that’s actually what I want.

Any thoughts on doing away with the FE welcome.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Arroyo on February 27, 2020, 06:40:29 pm
(https://i.imgflip.com/11652h.jpg)

Place hasn’t been the same without you Bud.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on February 27, 2020, 07:37:53 pm
LOL - "acrylic sheet lying around" that now has intricate cutouts and a bend in it.

Good to see you back at it Ond.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Mike A on February 27, 2020, 08:03:15 pm
You could use anycoin mechs. I have them in all of my machines. They are simple and they work great.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on February 27, 2020, 08:43:30 pm
Place hasn’t been the same without you Bud.

Thanks mate, you are partly to blame/thank for my re-energise  ;D  Keep doing what you're doing ok?

LOL - "acrylic sheet lying around" that now has intricate cutouts and a bend in it.

Good to see you back at it Ond.

;D Thanks javeryh, can I call you javery like Arroyo does?

You could use anycoin mechs. I have them in all of my machines. They are simple and they work great.

Thank Mike,  I'll check them up when I finish work.  They would be different to the ones below yeah?  Do they test for coin thickness?  It's all about the thickness for me... :P

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Mike A on February 27, 2020, 09:33:43 pm
They are 3D printed. You can print them yourself or buy them. Any coin will work in them. I always had kids shoving nickels and pennies in the regular mechs and they would jam up. The anycoin mechs have not jammed yet.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Arroyo on February 27, 2020, 09:39:11 pm
Place hasn’t been the same without you Bud.

Thanks mate, you are partly to blame/thank for my re-energise  ;D  Keep doing what you're doing ok?

Well most of my inspiration comes from your stuff bud, so I guess it’s a circular reference ;D  I’m addicted, so I don’t think I have a choice but to keep trucking along.

Quote
;D Thanks javeryh, can I call you javery like Arroyo does?

I’m too lazy to type the h :laugh:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: wp34 on February 27, 2020, 09:57:49 pm
Good to have you back Ond.   :cheers:

Any thoughts on doing away with the FE welcome.

I realize you already have a PC built but this seems like a great candidate for the BITKIT.  If you are not familiar with it the BITKIT is a Jamma FPGA that plays a bunch of great unique 4-way games.  Including the Pac's.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: jdbailey1206 on February 28, 2020, 08:45:23 am
The motherboard is a small but powerful Gigabyte gaming board with on-board-SSD.  A much less powerful board would have done just fine but I am restricted by what I can fit into the cab.

I love how the motherboards and drives are getting smaller but video cards are getting larger and larger.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on February 28, 2020, 09:19:59 am
Quote
;D Thanks javeryh, can I call you javery like Arroyo does?

I’m too lazy to type the h :laugh:

I should have never added the h to my name to begin with so Javery is just fine!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on April 26, 2021, 08:22:56 pm
Title: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on April 27, 2021, 11:32:56 am
Is it happening?!?!?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: emphatic on April 27, 2021, 04:13:53 pm
Wow, I must've been on my hiatus from this place when this build was started. Very exciting design, and good on you for building it around a CRT. You had me at CRT.  :cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on April 27, 2021, 08:53:54 pm

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on April 28, 2021, 12:10:45 am

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on April 28, 2021, 03:15:47 am
I obviously need to dig back through this whole thread (which I first saw just now!) because I have no idea what it is and love it already.

I'm a noob.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on April 28, 2021, 04:45:21 am

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on April 28, 2021, 10:38:22 am
Siiiiiick.  The real thing is looking even better than the initial design!  I really want to see this one finished - it has been forever since someone innovated on the tried and true Midway cocktail design.

Is that coin door the one with the 10"x7" cutout?  If so, what's the overhang?  I don't have the door yet but I'm trying to line up the edge with another element on the front panel.  If I just cut the 10"x7" hole in that spot, however much the coin door edge hangs over the hole will make it look off.  Am I making sense?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Gilrock on April 28, 2021, 10:43:04 am
Wow that MDF looks like its 1.25" thick.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Drnick on April 28, 2021, 11:09:47 am
Curves,  I like Curves :)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: wp34 on April 28, 2021, 11:12:32 am
Glad to see this one is alive.   :cheers:

Such a fantastic design.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Vigo on April 28, 2021, 01:28:29 pm
Just downright impressive.  :cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on April 28, 2021, 05:36:07 pm
Is that coin door the one with the 10"x7" cutout?  If so, what's the overhang?  I don't have the door yet but I'm trying to line up the edge with another element on the front panel.  If I just cut the 10"x7" hole in that spot, however much the coin door edge hangs over the hole will make it look off.  Am I making sense?

Yes, it is that cutout.  Here's some images to help you with the overhang measurements:

Side

Top

My coin plate will be mounted into steel plate which will then be fitted into a rebate on the rear of the panel inside that arch cutout (as per the design render).  The steel plate is quite thick and adds structural strength back to the panel.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on April 28, 2021, 07:05:42 pm
Yes, it is that cutout.  Here's some images to help you with the overhang measurements:

My coin plate will be mounted into steel plate which will then be fitted into a rebate on the rear of the panel inside that arch cutout (as per the design render).  The steel plate is quite thick and adds structural strength back to the panel.

Perfect!  Thank you!

The steel plate you mentioned is very interesting... I would think MDF would provide enough support (just give it the Ond pain treatment) but steel will DEFINITELY do the job!  I'm so happy you are back at this stuff.   :cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on April 29, 2021, 11:33:28 pm

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on April 30, 2021, 12:03:24 am
And again another really fun design being executed in an exemplary fashion.

The only problem of course being that we now expect this of you all the time.

;D
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on April 30, 2021, 01:37:00 am
Hah ha, you just triggered a kind of nostalgic whimsy in me.  My Retro-Futuristic Mame Cabinet project was before your time here, but I remember comments to that effect on various occasions when I was working on that. It was a popular project with quite a few views and good momentum.  RoToron evolved out of the 'ashes' of that. I really appreciate your interest and enthusiasm, not just for my projects, but other peoples as well.  There's some real artistry going on in your ehukai ! build which I like a lot.  Being an "all or nothing" kind of guy you may find that I'll flood this board for a bit as I resurrect various projects.  I'll hog the space with picture rich posts for a while and then probably vanish again.

I like this build and the design because it's all about the CRT and an oversized one at that. I want to stare into the glow of the screen, as I watch the colorful sprites moving across the shadow mask, I'll drift back to a time very different from now.

I'm for the builders here bobby, of which you are one.  All the rest is mostly noise to me.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on April 30, 2021, 03:43:51 am
Flattered and inspired by you and your builds.

I'm always amazed at the spectrum of skill sets here and the proficiency level of so many of the people who post builds.

I'm having a lot of fun and in the grand scheme of it all, I am still only working on things that qualify as prototypes in the pantheon of what is going on in this place.

Hell, I still can't get Windows to reliably stop screwing around with my controller IDs at the moment.

But between cabinet design, software work, carpentry, graphics, restoration detail, audio, monitor tech...
Holy ---steaming pile of meadow muffin---.

Glad I stumbled onto this hobby (amd more so the byoac crew) because there are so many cool things to learn.

I always thought cocktail cabinets were pretty bland BITD so this build is extra cool.

Hope to see RoToron complete at some point too.
>:D
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on April 30, 2021, 09:15:07 am

Now I get it!  Awesome work as usual and really great design - the lines and interesting topography of this panel are really pleasing to the eye.  Your renders show the metal as black - is that just prime, sand, paint like any other surface?

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on April 30, 2021, 04:01:55 pm
Yes, primer can be applied directly to galvanized (zinc coated) metal sheet.  I always sand it first with 600 grit because 400 - 600 is the standard for paint adhesion on a prepared surface in automotive painting.  It removes some of the protective zinc coating but since it's being painted it's fine.  I want the metal sheet and the coin door to have exactly the same black finish so I'm going to spray paint both (all external parts) with the same paint.

One thing I've learnt over the years of painting is that the orange peel effect can be greatly reduced by thinning down the paint to be used with a spray gun.  I always try to paint onto a horizontal surface to prevent paint runs.  Spraying from a little further back also gives a really even finish.

The metal panels will be fixed in place using bolts into short threaded inserts on the rear of the panel i.e. no visible bolts, screws or joinery on the outside of the cab.  This cab is all bolted together.  It will let me paint first and then assemble as well as test fit the CRT before final assembly.

Air flows through this cab from the base and out under each CP to keep things cool.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 01, 2021, 09:17:08 pm

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Vigo on May 01, 2021, 10:52:17 pm
Looking superb!

(https://i.pinimg.com/originals/--BINGO! Either that, or I was attempting to say "before" but it was too many letters to type--/d0/bc/b4d0bc7a0a9a9d6f34274e7be5eabfe1.gif)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on May 04, 2021, 02:38:42 pm
I can't wait to see how the control panels get attached to the curved side panels - looks really difficult but then again so is everything about this project!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: yamatetsu on May 04, 2021, 03:42:54 pm
I can't wait to see how the control panels get attached to the curved side panels - looks really difficult but then again so is everything about this project!

Double sided tape.

.
.
.

You can get the curve by using a belt sander. Put the curved piece to the edge of the CP/support thing, trace the line with a pencil, sand away until you get the curve. Put some t-nuts into the support thingy, screw it from the inside.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 04, 2021, 05:20:45 pm
Looking superb!

(https://i.pinimg.com/originals/--BINGO! Either that, or I was attempting to say "before" but it was too many letters to type--/d0/bc/b4d0bc7a0a9a9d6f34274e7be5eabfe1.gif)

Thanks mate, I like to compare ongoing constructions with design renders, there are always differences!

@ javeryh - it may seem difficult but the hard work was done in the designing, well most of it anyway.  I've got most of the heavy routing out of the way.  The next thing will be prepping for the CP supports.  I will need to cut an opening into each curved panel for this.

Double sided tape.

:laugh2: I knew I was overthinking this!

I'm working on both this and RoToron at the moment.  The fiberglass repairs and reinforcement on RoToron look so damn ugly I don't want to post any pics till I cut all that back.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on May 04, 2021, 09:19:02 pm
Looking superb!

(https://i.pinimg.com/originals/--BINGO! Either that, or I was attempting to say "before" but it was too many letters to type--/d0/bc/b4d0bc7a0a9a9d6f34274e7be5eabfe1.gif)

Thanks mate, I like to compare ongoing constructions with design renders, there are always differences!

@ javeryh - it may seem difficult but the hard work was done in the designing, well most of it anyway.  I've got most of the heavy routing out of the way.  The next thing will be prepping for the CP supports.  I will need to cut an opening into each curved panel for this.

Double sided tape.

:laugh2: I knew I was overthinking this!

I'm working on both this and RoToron at the moment.  The fiberglass repairs and reinforcement on RoToron look so damn ugly I don't want to post any pics till I cut all that back.

One of the problems with (even good!) glasswork-

"Pay no attention to that man (or the spurious blobs of resin) behind the curtain!"

Looking forward to seeing the paintwork on this one too.

I want whatever apparatus you are using!!
:)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: nitrogen_widget on May 05, 2021, 12:59:09 pm
I want to see that 27" crt lowered into it like an engine.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Jimbo on May 05, 2021, 03:23:37 pm
I want to see that 27" crt lowered into it like an engine.

greased lightning
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: pbj on May 05, 2021, 04:11:55 pm
Cracked neck goes pssssssssst

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on May 05, 2021, 04:37:19 pm
Cracked neck goes pssssssssst

Always the optimist
:lol
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 06, 2021, 05:54:59 pm
I have a ton of other stuff to be getting on with but I'm going to spend a few dedicated hours this morning working on this.  See where I get to.  Yeah the big old heavy CRT needs to be rigged up so I can lower it into the cabinet.  Cracking the neck on the CRT is a risk for sure, but I'm more concerned about just getting the CRT working really well with an optimal image.  I have an idea about that:  The cabinetry will take some time with woodworking and painting and all the rest. I want to work on the CRT in parallel so that by the time the cabinet work is all done the CRT and Groovymame setup is well and truly tuned and ready. I'm going to build a quick n dirty test frame for the CRT to allow me to work safely on it while I build the cabinet.

I'm knowledgeable to a point with electronics i.e. I know enough to get by, but at some point I'll probably need to reach out to experts here like Zebidee or someone to get the best from the CRT.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 06, 2021, 11:33:00 pm

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on May 07, 2021, 12:43:20 am
I like the way that control panel is shaping up!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 07, 2021, 11:17:14 pm

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 09, 2021, 09:42:57 pm

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 10, 2021, 10:36:20 am

This machine is a work of art, Ond. When complete, you could keep this baby in your lounge room... or in a gallery.

Glad you are going CRT this time.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on May 10, 2021, 11:18:48 am
I’m actually at a loss as to what is going on - the control panel is way more complex than the original render made it seem.  Looks like you are creating some support “fins” (for lack of a better term) with spacers in between each one.  I am very curious to see how this is going to interact with the curved and stained wood panel.   Do you have to cut slots in it for the fins to poke through?

I love where this is going…
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on May 10, 2021, 01:12:54 pm
My guess is that the outer frame of the control panel supports will also be the brqce for the tube brackets.

Getting all that activity into that small of a space is a challenge from a design standpoint.
This is a very elegant way to address those issues!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 11, 2021, 07:39:51 pm

This machine is a work of art, Ond. When complete, you could keep this baby in your lounge room... or in a gallery.

Glad you are going CRT this time.

Thanks Zebidee, I have a feeling I'll be chatting to you in the near future about CRT stuff  ;D

I’m actually at a loss as to what is going on - the control panel is way more complex than the original render made it seem.  Looks like you are creating some support “fins” (for lack of a better term) with spacers in between each one.  I am very curious to see how this is going to interact with the curved and stained wood panel.   Do you have to cut slots in it for the fins to poke through?

I love where this is going…

You are basically right about the supports or fins ha hah.  Not just slots but a rectangle cutout is to be cut into the curved panels.  This cutout will accommodate the fins but will also serve as the aperture for a speaker and cooling airflow.  A sexy grill will be covering the cutout.  More on that later...

My guess is that the outer frame of the control panel supports will also be the brqce for the tube brackets.

Getting all that activity into that small of a space is a challenge from a design standpoint.
This is a very elegant way to address those issues!

It's a squeeze alright but I'm edging closer to the big test - dropping the crt from above and seeing if everything fits  :-\
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 12, 2021, 01:11:04 am
I'm guessing here... these blocks are to hold a bracket that holds the tube? Wooden brackets sit on the flat, cutoff corner bit? Or are you planning to drop the tube pegs directly onto those blocks?

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 12, 2021, 01:57:42 am
I'm guessing here... these blocks are to hold a bracket that holds the tube? Wooden brackets sit on the flat, cutoff corner bit? Or are you planning to drop the tube pegs directly onto those blocks?

It's a good guess but no, none of that timber work will support the tube.  In fact the tube will be entirely supported by the marine ply 'collar' I devised which fits around the tube mounting bracket seen here:

If you look at the top of the side panel you can see the rebate where this collar will sit.  (it will be bolted in, not just hang there with gravity  :lol)
In the original television's plastic casing, the tube was simply held in place by four bolts at each corner of the tube.  Although my solution is a little more robust, it still resembles the way the tube was 'slung' only now it is horizontal.  The thick MDF panels reinforced with steel plate will take all the weight of the tube. Internal bracketing in the cabinet will ensure the overall cabinet is  rigid and strong.  At least...that's the plan  :P

I hope all that makes sense, just follow along and we'll be there soon enough!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 12, 2021, 03:39:15 am
Gotcha, I was hoping you'd show me something like that.

With your collar - I've found an easier way to mount CRTs. Just cut the middle out of the collar, leaving 2 pieces in a rough U shape. The middle parts don't actually add anything significant structurally so can be removed. For the edges that come to the corner pegs, cut that at 45 degrees (rather than a curve) and it will always come to the corner pegs optimally. You can then just slide the two pieces to the tube so that they always fit perfectly. Not better than what you've done, just easier.

This is easier to cut - no need to use a router, just a skill saw or jigsaw will do the job. Doesn't have to be terribly precise, doesn't have to look pretty either as nobody will ever see it once covered by a bezel.

In that photo above the CRT wasn't even screwed down yet! It was just hanging there (now secured).

You will also want to cut a couple of blocking pieces to go behind. This can just be any straight pieces of scrap wood, here I just used some 1x1 inch blocking pieces.

I used T-nuts like these to secure the tube:

If these pics look familiar, I've posted them long time ago on one of javeryh's build threads http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,161994.msg1719883.html#msg1719883

I still haven't progressed that cab any further though  :(
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 16, 2021, 02:59:03 am
Thanks for that info Zebidee, I'm glad I'm on the right track with mounting the CRT  :cheers:

progress:

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 16, 2021, 04:10:06 am
Forgive me if you've covered this already - are you going to leave the woodgrain from the plywood exposed at the ends? I hope you are because I think it looks awesome even in the unfinished state it is in those photos.

There is a nice grain and the warm redness of the wood shines through. The way you've curved the pieces makes it look even better because it is obviously real wood (not some simple plastic molded thingy).
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 16, 2021, 05:16:11 am
I hear you on making the most of the real wood on the cabinet.  I do need to give some thought to durability though, splintering on edges etc.  It's one of the last things I'll do in the build, so we'll see what works best and looks good too.

I have two questions for anyone who'd like to give it some thought:

1. The first is about the choice/brand of joysticks to go in this.  I'd like to keep this cabinet as 'old school' as possible in terms of hardware and functionality.  The machine will only ever have 4 way games on it.  That means a few variations of Pac-Man and one or two other 4 way games. I'd like to use the best 4-way leaf spring sticks I can get.  Suggestions welcome.

2. The machine will never have a menu system.  When you switch it on it will simply load up a game like a single game machine.  On the side panel without a coin door there will be a small hatch.  Behind it some switches (or something) to choose the game the machine loads.  I started thinking about a dip-switch row hooked into an Arduino for game selection but I'd welcome other ideas or variations on that.  The more simple, the better.   I'd be very happy to offer something back for a good idea by way of thanks.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 16, 2021, 08:06:05 am
MiSTer will do what you want - allow you to boot into same game everytime. You can change it via hidden menu options. According to reports anyway.

Unfortunately my MiSTer hasn't (fully) arrived/isn't complete yet, so can't comment more.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on May 16, 2021, 10:07:12 am
I have been very happy with my JLFs for 4-way games.  I’ve had one in my Donkey Kong for years and I just love the feel.

You will be able to have more than just a couple of games - especially if you add a button or two.  I’m putting a list together for my 4-way cab that’s under construction and this is my list so far:

Quote
Amidar
Astro Blaster
Bagman
Burger Time
Circus Charlie
Crush Roller
Dig Dug
Donkey Kong
Donkey Kong II
Donkey Kong 3
Donkey Kong, Jr.
Eyes
Frogger
Galaga
Galaxian
Gaplus
Gorf
Jr. Pac-Man
Jumping Jack
Mappy
Moon Cresta
Ms. Pac-Man
Mr. Do!
Mr. Do!'s Castle
Nibbler
Pac-Man
Pac & Pal
Pac-Man Plus
Pandora's Palace
Pepper II
Pengo
Phoenix
Pooyan
Qix
Rally-X
Satan's Hallow
Super Bagman
Super Pac-Man
The End

Now, these aren’t all “essential” but a tight list of 20 games would work great on your cabinet.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Jimbo on May 16, 2021, 10:17:34 am
Ond, if you can wait a few weeks, I hope to have my in-depth 4-way joystick comparison video done.  I've got 12 different 4-way sticks to compare, 4 of them are leafs.

Javeryh... the JLF in 4-way mode that I have here, it looks like the diagonals can still be hit. I haven't wired it up yet but it certainly seems that it has 2 microswitches engaged at the same time when switching directions.  Have you noticed any problems with that in specific games?  Of course I'll be testing this myself in great detail soon anyway, but thought I'd ask.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on May 16, 2021, 10:24:54 am
Ond, if you can wait a few weeks, I hope to have my in-depth 4-way joystick comparison video done.  I've got 12 different 4-way sticks to compare, 4 of them are leafs.

Javeryh... the JLF in 4-way mode that I have here, it looks like the diagonals can still be hit. I haven't wired it up yet but it certainly seems that it has 2 microswitches engaged at the same time when switching directions.  Have you noticed any problems with that in specific games?  Of course I'll be testing this myself in great detail soon anyway, but thought I'd ask.
I honestly haven’t noticed and I’ve played A LOT of Donkey Kong and Pac-Man over the years.  Not that it would matter but mine is around 15 years old - maybe the design changed slightly over time?  Next time I fire it up I’ll specifically see if I can get diagonal movement out if it.

I’m super interested in your review - I’m about to buy 2 more sticks but I’ll definitely hold off if there is something better.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on May 16, 2021, 05:20:55 pm

Looking forward to all of these questoons being answered!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 16, 2021, 10:35:35 pm
Thanks for the quick initial thoughts guys.

So to refine the scope of possible solutions, this machine will be PC based with Groovymame, probably on Win7 OS.

Ond, if you can wait a few weeks, I hope to have my in-depth 4-way joystick comparison video done.  I've got 12 different 4-way sticks to compare, 4 of them are leafs.

Javeryh... the JLF in 4-way mode that I have here, it looks like the diagonals can still be hit. I haven't wired it up yet but it certainly seems that it has 2 microswitches engaged at the same time when switching directions.  Have you noticed any problems with that in specific games?  Of course I'll be testing this myself in great detail soon anyway, but thought I'd ask.

I can wait a few weeks Jimbo.  It will take a few weeks just to get up controls set-up anyway.

I already have JLFs but they are micro-switch based.  I really want to go with leaf-switch based sticks.

These look really interesting (pre-set to 4 way) C'mon Randy talk them up! Testify!:

(https://groovygamegear.com/Store_Images/Dominux8_Splash.jpg)

Looking forward to all of these questoons being answered!

;D Glad you're enjoying buddy, we are nearly up to the sexy stuff, wave bye bye to raw MDF!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 17, 2021, 02:51:57 am
;D Glad you're enjoying buddy, we are nearly up to the sexy stuff, wave bye bye to raw MDF!

Ond, how are the plywood prices these days back home?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: wp34 on May 17, 2021, 07:55:17 am
I love the contrast of the different materials you are using with this OND.  Looking forward to seeing how it turns out.   :cheers:

This is the joystick I have in my Pac Man cocktail.  These have a better feel (for Pac-type games anyway) than Wico 4-ways IMHO.  I replaced a NOS Wico with one of these after trying both.

https://groovygamegear.com/webstore/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=65&products_id=402

They are out of stock right now though.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 18, 2021, 12:52:50 am
Ond, how are the plywood prices these days back home?

Pretty good lately, Marine ply seems to be priced just a little more than softwood (structural ply).  If a sheet of structural 600 x1200 is at $24 then the same sized (and thickness) sheet in Marine ply will be a few dollars more at around$32.

I love the contrast of the different materials you are using with this OND.  Looking forward to seeing how it turns out.   :cheers:

This is the joystick I have in my Pac Man cocktail.  These have a better feel (for Pac-type games anyway) than Wico 4-ways IMHO.  I replaced a NOS Wico with one of these after trying both.

https://groovygamegear.com/webstore/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=65&products_id=402

They are out of stock right now though.

Thanks wp34, that's exactly the sort of info I'm looking for.  Those sticks have a short throw compared to the ones I mentioned.

No other suggestions from anyone for a switch selection to replace a GUI menu for the game to boot into?  :)

I worked on the other 'end' panel today.  Check out the blasphemer adding moisture to MDF to fix the curve (and drying it out again).  :laugh2:

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 18, 2021, 01:19:09 am
I can see that Bobby's going to love this bit
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on May 18, 2021, 02:21:33 am
Zebidee is right of course...

That's what it's all about right there!
:lol

The Eames boys got nothing on you there daddio.

Even easier finish work if you have woven cloth laying around to use.
;)
After using good cloth on boards for so long I really hate trying to wet out chop mat

As masochistic as it sounds, after following your work here Ond I'm actually looking forward to another "unconventional" build now.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 18, 2021, 06:37:16 am
I'm all for unconventional builds bobby, I look forward to seeing it!  8)

I ducked out to the workshop one last time tonight.  Beauty coat 1 of 3:

As soon as the glass is set on the other end I'll attach it to the Marine Ply braces, veneer and stain it.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 18, 2021, 07:43:43 am
As soon as the glass is set on the other end I'll attach it to the Marine Ply braces, veneer and stain it.

Is that PVA glue?

What veneer/stain are you going to use? Or were you thinking to give it another light sand and go tung oil?

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on May 18, 2021, 12:22:42 pm
No other suggestions from anyone for a switch selection to replace a GUI menu for the game to boot into?  :)

What about an RFID solution?  You could put a reader behind the coin door with an area to hold small panel or token with the RFID tag on the back (labeled to look like whatever game is on the tag) that will cause that game to boot.  Or maybe there is a way to make it with magnets and put the RFID reader on the inside of the coin door and the tag can stick to it magnetically?  I'm sure you could think of a much more elegant solution but RFID tags are cool as hell.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: wp34 on May 18, 2021, 12:42:13 pm
No other suggestions from anyone for a switch selection to replace a GUI menu for the game to boot into?  :)

Not sure if this is what you are looking for but tony.silveira posted about his new Stream Deck and it looks really fascinating to me.

https://smile.amazon.com/Elgato-Stream-Deck-Controller-customizable/dp/B06XKNZT1P/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=stream+deck&qid=1621356077&sr=8-3

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Vigo on May 18, 2021, 12:57:40 pm
Since you are talking arduino, I would suggest just a four position selector dial knob, especially if you are set what it will play. Then on the surface the knob is mounted on, just put 4 pictures or text of the games you will have playable at each position, and you can spiff it up with some lights that the arduino programs to light up as well.

This is the first google image that somewhat matches what I am thinking about.

(https://thumbs.dreamstime.com/z/g-network-switch-knob-different-telecommunication-standarts-mobile-network-g-network-switch-knob-different-183867935.jpg)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Vigo on May 18, 2021, 01:04:53 pm
No other suggestions from anyone for a switch selection to replace a GUI menu for the game to boot into?  :)

Not sure if this is what you are looking for but tony.silveira posted about his new Stream Deck and it looks really fascinating to me.

https://smile.amazon.com/Elgato-Stream-Deck-Controller-customizable/dp/B06XKNZT1P/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=stream+deck&qid=1621356077&sr=8-3

That thing is awesome. Makes me wish I had more time to tinker with those kind of things. Could do like an intellivision with overlays.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Hoopz on May 18, 2021, 01:19:08 pm
No other suggestions from anyone for a switch selection to replace a GUI menu for the game to boot into?  :)

Not sure if this is what you are looking for but tony.silveira posted about his new Stream Deck and it looks really fascinating to me.

https://smile.amazon.com/Elgato-Stream-Deck-Controller-customizable/dp/B06XKNZT1P/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=stream+deck&qid=1621356077&sr=8-3

That thing is awesome. Makes me wish I had more time to tinker with those kind of things. Could do like an intellivision with overlays.
Interesting idea.  I'd prefer the original controller if possible but anything to play an Intellivision game....
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: wp34 on May 18, 2021, 02:32:39 pm
No other suggestions from anyone for a switch selection to replace a GUI menu for the game to boot into?  :)

Not sure if this is what you are looking for but tony.silveira posted about his new Stream Deck and it looks really fascinating to me.

https://smile.amazon.com/Elgato-Stream-Deck-Controller-customizable/dp/B06XKNZT1P/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=stream+deck&qid=1621356077&sr=8-3

That thing is awesome. Makes me wish I had more time to tinker with those kind of things. Could do like an intellivision with overlays.
Interesting idea.  I'd prefer the original controller if possible but anything to play an Intellivision game....

Back when I was trying too hard to get every console emulator running on my cabinet I would have really wanted one of these.  I'm not exactly sure how I would use it now but it is really cool.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: PL1 on May 18, 2021, 03:23:51 pm
Since you are talking arduino, I would suggest just a four position selector dial knob, especially if you are set what it will play. Then on the surface the knob is mounted on, just put 4 pictures or text of the games you will have playable at each position, and you can spiff it up with some lights that the arduino programs to light up as well.
If you want more than 4 games, you can easily find a rotary switch that will work.
- This listing offers switches with up to 10 positions.  https://www.amazon.com/Electronics-Salon-1PCS-Rotary-Switch-Knob/dp/B018LZOESO/?th=1 (https://www.amazon.com/Electronics-Salon-1PCS-Rotary-Switch-Knob/dp/B018LZOESO/?th=1)

Keywords used to describe rotary switches include poles, throws, and decks.
- The most important consideration is the number of throws (positions) >= number of game options.
- The least important consideration is the number of decks.  More decks = usually more complicated and expensive.
- The number of poles/decks can be important if you want to control the LEDs without using Arduino programming. (i.e. use 1 pole/deck for game selection and 1 pole/deck for LED lighting)

For example, this is a single deck "2P4T" -- two pole, four throw.
- The middle brown fiber layer rotates with the knob/shaft. (single deck)
- The two pole contacts are in the middle circle and the four throw contacts for each pole are on the outside circle.
- When the top pole contacts the top right throw, the bottom pole contacts the bottom left throw.
- There is a mechanical connection (the dashed line in the 2P6T schematic) but no electrical connection between the top pole/contacts and the bottom pole/contacts.

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/61tnQQfKV8L._AC_SL1100_.jpg)  (https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/61H2E6WgZpL._AC_SL1100_.jpg)  (http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-zJkb9kh3BW4/T70XWUXqnuI/AAAAAAAAB40/46yQU1BAaoQ/s400/rotary-switc-2-poles-6-lines.png)

Another possible consideration is whether the switch is "make before break" (pole loses contact with one throw contact after making contact with the next one) or "break before make". (pole loses contact with one throw contact before making contact with the next one)
- Mechanical rotary joysticks like the Happ and LS-30 used "make before break" switches.
- For your application, I don't see this being an issue.  Worst case, you have a split second with two LEDs lit and two Arduino inputs triggered.

Scott
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: pbj on May 18, 2021, 08:29:12 pm
Your mame cabinet ain’t gonna like a constant input
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Vigo on May 18, 2021, 11:06:05 pm
With an arduino, would’t you just base the input to trigger only when the selection switch is changed?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 18, 2021, 11:20:09 pm
With an arduino, would’t you just base the input to trigger only when the selection switch is changed?

Yep, the switch input is to the Arduino not the OS.  Output of the Arduino can be used by the OS/system in a number of ways, none of which would impact running applications.  Jim would be correct if there was some constant key press but it doesn't work that way.  We'll look at this in detail soon.  I love the great ideas you guys have been suggesting but right now I'm woodworking  :P
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: PL1 on May 19, 2021, 01:13:37 am
Here's something to consider after you take care of the woodworking, Ond.   ;D

With an arduino, would’t you just base the input to trigger only when the selection switch is changed?
Yes, you only want the Arduino to send a keystroke to the PC for a short period when there's a change detected.
- That keystroke should trigger a script or .bat file on the PC that closes the current game and launches the new game.

Another good feature to add in the Arduino code is to only send the keystroke after the new setting has been stable for several seconds.
- That way if you're switching from game 1 to game 4, you don't end up launching and closing games 2 and 3 in rapid succession.   :banghead:

I'll leave the down-in-the-weeds coding details to someone who, unlike me, actually has the talent to make this work.   :embarassed:   :lol

Scott
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on May 19, 2021, 03:39:16 am
Even though it makes my head hurt sometimes (and I often have to read these posts half a dozen times before I START to get it) I do like reading threads that have this particular assortment of people chiming in on them.

This is one of those threads.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 19, 2021, 06:13:39 am
Is that PVA glue?

What veneer/stain are you going to use? Or were you thinking to give it another light sand and go tung oil?

It's Rust-Oleum general purpose  clear coat, one end is already stained with Mahogany stain.  If you check page 2 (near the bottom) of this thread you'll see where I constructed and stained the first end-panel.

Even though it makes my head hurt sometimes (and I often have to read these posts half a dozen times before I START to get it) I do like reading threads that have this particular assortment of people chiming in on them.

This is one of those threads.

Brainstorming ideas and creative collaboration is one of the best things about the forum IMO  :D

So I now have a number of interesting options for the game selection/boot up mechanism.  The Stream Deck controller WP34 suggested is cool but not what I had in mind for this project. I'll keep it in mind for something else though.  javeryh's  RFID solution could have a lot of novelty factor, I'm going to give it some thought.  Vigo's idea for a switch with labels is great. Thanks PL1 for the Rotary switch details, using a single switch for both input selection and LEDs had not occurred to me.  I'm going to concept up something over the next few days and post it here.

I'm showing the work I did on the second end panel even though I sort of detailed this on page 2 for the first one I did.. Half decent veneering that doesn't look like ass takes patience and a few hours works.  So here it is:

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 19, 2021, 07:51:08 am
Awesome  :cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 20, 2021, 07:38:32 pm
I have the 'menu' solution.  It is a combination of ideas really, but I will credit javeryh with the inspiration.  Heh, I'm already due to help him with his Pi-4 setup but I will add some artwork effort to that as he likes.  Thank you javeryh!

First the high level concept for easy reading (and then the more detailed low-level for anyone interested).

High Level - Concept:
The side panel without the coin door will have module for fitting a 'cartridge'.  I can't think of any other name for it at the moment but the cartridge will be about CD case size.  To start with just six.  Each one will feature artwork of the game to load much like a console cartridge.  They will not slot in to the module but lock in flat against the panel so you can see the artwork at all times. Press a button and the machine boots into that game.  To change the game, you must change the cartridge and reboot.

Low-Level - Concept:
Each cartridge or plate will be made from acrylic sheet and embedded with a small connection point.  Each connection point will be binary coded to four bits allowing a maximum of 16 combinations.

1. The four bits will be monitored by some simple Arduino code which translates to a variable value for each binary combo.

2. Arduino will transmit the variable value via tx-rx serial connection to a USB port on the system PC

3. A batch file (which runs on boot) on the PC will listen for the variable value and execute the appropriate game in Mame.  Once the game is running the batch file will tell Arduino to stop sending anything with an tx response back.

4. Arduino will get it's power directly from the switched PC PS, so long as the machine is plugged in, Arduino will remain running regardless of the PC.  It will monitor for a cartridge change and we go back to step 1.

The novelty factor was too high to resist and is way more fun than just a switch solution.  Although in the end, it behaves much like the switch solution does anyway.  RFID could be used as well, but I think in this instance my solution is more simple.

More updates soon, plenty to do in the workshop today.  ;D
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: pbj on May 20, 2021, 10:38:15 pm
That sounds incredibly stupid, Ond.  You’ve lost me on that one.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 20, 2021, 10:50:39 pm
:lol Do you mean the way it works, or just the whole idea in general.  I'm listening.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: pbj on May 20, 2021, 11:03:28 pm
Eh.... I could come around if you get rid of the reboot part.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 20, 2021, 11:20:45 pm
ok, that's fair.  I thought you were objecting because I'm crossing some console/arcade boundary or something.  The reason I wanted to reboot on every game selection is that I didn't want this particular machine to be easy to hop from game to game.  I wanted it to be more like a single game machine but which you could change games on a restart.  That was always the case. I'm deliberately limiting the amount of games this thing can play as well.  Playing a multitude of games is more for my other arcade projects.

I have thought about changing without a reboot though and moving away from my original requirement.  Try not to think about the use of a card/key as per a console cartridge, it's making use of the blank space on the panel for something that might look cool and be functional as well.

Nothing is set in stone though, yet.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 20, 2021, 11:44:30 pm
"Cool and functional", I like that.

There's always a dynamic marquee idea - you can display art from the selected game on a mini-screen in the panel  (say from an old smartphone, like what you did for the media box) before performing a soft reboot.

I feel that your keycard idea, while cool, is unnecessarily complicated. It takes away from a principles of simplicity yet elegance, form fitting function that I see in most of your work.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 21, 2021, 12:22:35 am
The idea probably sounds complicated from my low level concept description (it's not).  If it worked it would certainly be very easy to use, easier than browsing  a menu with joystick and buttons for instance.  One thing I definitely don't want is any sort of screen based menu system.  If I go down that path I might as well just use an FE and be done with it.  Not happening.

Here's what I'll do, first, just a concept render, so you can at least see what it would look like and then later on, a proof of concept in hardware.  If the idea is not both cool looking AND functional, I promise to drop it all together and move to another solution.  Howzzat?   :)
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: PL1 on May 21, 2021, 12:59:25 am
I could come around if you get rid of the reboot part.
Agreed on not rebooting -- the delay created by physically swapping carts should be long enough to discourage people from idly flipping through games.

Each cartridge or plate will be made from acrylic sheet and embedded with a small connection point.  Each connection point will be binary coded to four bits allowing a maximum of 16 combinations.
This sounds like it could be a weak spot, depending on your plan.   :scared

While we're waiting for your concept render, here are three approaches that sprang to mind listed in ascending order:

5 position (ground + 4 bits) edge connector and custom printed PCBs
- Great contact
- Probably needs a bit more force than you'd like to plug/unplug the cart

Pogo pins/spring loaded contacts on cab and slotted metal plate on bottom/back of cart
- Metal plate has 5 tabs (ground + 4 bits), cut off tab(s) that you don't want to make contact
- Hardly any force needed to plug/unplug

4 short roller-arm lever microswitches mounted vertically (roller down) on the cab with just the roller exposed
- No slot in the back of the cart = switch pressed
- Slot in the back of the cart = switch not pressed
- Lip on bottom-front edge of frame to hold bottom of cart against switches
- Taller lip on top edge to hold top of cart so it doesn't topple forward
- Finger hole in bottom lip so you can press up and pivot the bottom of the cart back/forward to load/unload the cart

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/61KKa9xSB1L._SL1200_.jpg)

Scott
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Vigo on May 21, 2021, 02:32:43 am
The rebooting threw me off a little too, but mostly because I try to run how I would do this task, in my mind, and programming a hotkey script to shutdown and reboot with a new game seems much more complex/prone to cause issues than a script to quit out of current game and start a new game (and change the default bootup game). I trust your ability, not so much mine.  :lol

I just bought myself a pachislo machine, so an idea on top of my mind is there is a key switch required to be turned to change the odds on the machine. Forcing a key for swapping could be one possible discouragement from rebooting.

Also, regarding the cartridges. I both love and hate it. I love the feeling of a cartridge, even if the game isn't truly present on it, I am a little bit iffy on the loose parts and relying on various connectors playing ball. That said, after reading about PL1's suggestion of roller switches, I am reminded of a board game I had as a kid. It was called "Shrieks and Creaks".

What it had was a little speaker called the talking tombstone, and you plugged it into your tape player, and just played a tape the entire time you are playing the board game. The tombstone was mostly just a speaker, but without any cards inserted, it would just cut the audio. Anyway, Each player had a player card that they would routinely need to insert into the tombstone along with another key card. When the cards were inserted, it depressed different combinations of switches, that worked just like dip switch settings, if the right combination of switches were depressed at the same time, it would connect the audio feed and you would hear the instruction of where to go on the board. If the combination was not triggered, you would get dead silence, and are just able to finish your turn.

Anyway, my thought is that you could avoid doing anything with embedding connectors if you simply had different patterns cut into the sheet of acrylic. Depending on the combination of switches depressed from inserting the card, it would be recognized as a different game. Combine that with a key to lock it in place, if you want.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 21, 2021, 02:57:10 am
Seeing as we are back to cards again, I had a thought - how about optically-based switches? The light sensor can tell which card is inserted by the tabs present because they interrupt reflection back to sensor. No moving parts required! Easy to insert/remove, low failure rate once you get it setup properly.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on May 21, 2021, 03:00:28 am
Dropping a game specific coin (type) item into a slot which happens to have an rfid in it to launch said specific game would be very cool I think.

I am in no way smart enough to implement my brilliant idea.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: PL1 on May 21, 2021, 05:27:23 am
Seeing as we are back to cards again, I had a thought - how about optically-based switches?
Seems like the reflective ones wouldn't work well for this application, so that leaves the beam break ones.

- Active low device -- when you break the beam, the white wire drops to logic low.
- They work with 5v (PC) or 3.3v. (RasPi GPIO)

I can easily remix the 3D printable mount available here (https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2932740) on Thingiverse.
- That mount was designed for skee-ball machines.

If you set them up so the beam is going straight thru the cart, you'll need a front lip with at least 15mm depth -- the U-channel in the pic above is 1/2" (12.7mm) wide.

If you put the IR LED behind the cart and use a 45 degree reflector in the front lip to redirect the beam to an upward-facing sensor, you can greatly reduce the depth of the front lip.

The other way to use the beam break sensors is to do a variation on the roller arm switch setup described earlier.
- Use the flats (and slots) on the back of the cart to push (or to not push) a lever arm that raises (or doesn't raise) a tab so it doesn't break (or does break) the IR beam.

Dropping a game specific coin (type) item into a slot which happens to have an rfid in it to launch said specific game would be very cool I think.
There are several RFID or Near-Field Communication (NFC) builds that could be helpful, especially JudgeRob's Web of Wonder (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,149265.0.html) build.

IIRC Howard was messing around with some (programmable?) Amiibo NFC cards or figures a while back, too.

Scott
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: 10yard on May 21, 2021, 07:37:08 am
The idea probably sounds complicated from my low level concept description (it's not).  If it worked it would certainly be very easy to use, easier than browsing  a menu with joystick and buttons for instance.  One thing I definitely don't want is any sort of screen based menu system.  If I go down that path I might as well just use an FE and be done with it.  Not happening.

Here's what I'll do, first, just a concept render, so you can at least see what it would look like and then later on, a proof of concept in hardware.  If the idea is not both cool looking AND functional, I promise to drop it all together and move to another solution.  Howzzat?   :)

How about repurposing a credit/smart card reader?  You can get these fairly cheaply and in various shapes and sizes such as the one in the image below.

(https://i.imgur.com/QAy4KdY.jpg?1)

I think it could work be made to work as a cartridge slot.   Your cartridges would be old credit cards  :).  You can make the cars look pretty by smoothing the faces down and applying game specific artwork stickers.
There are PC/SC command line programs that will provide you with a unique ID from an inserted card.  That ID could then be used in a script to determine what action to take,  what game to launch.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Malenko on May 21, 2021, 08:39:55 am
I hate to be the voice of reason by why not just a single button inside the coin door that makes the machine go to the next game in the list? Optionally another button to go back a game.

All that up there^  seems like an overengineering nightmare.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: wp34 on May 21, 2021, 09:14:56 am
Anyway, my thought is that you could avoid doing anything with embedding connectors if you simply had different patterns cut into the sheet of acrylic. Depending on the combination of switches depressed from inserting the card, it would be recognized as a different game. Combine that with a key to lock it in place, if you want.

I like this idea.  With my cocktail cabinet I usually have a drink(s) and so I keep coasters on the glass.  It would be cool if you could design coasters to match your cabinet and also be used to change games.  Vigo's idea would eliminate any connectors that wouldn't react well to beverages.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Jimbo on May 21, 2021, 09:42:33 am
Ond... I just want to say I love the cartridge idea!  Reminds me of the Vectrex!

Regardless how it's done technically, I would think the most important thing should be that it should be instant (or as near as) for the games to switch.   If you have to accomplish that by rebooting or whatever, just please please please make it really quick.  I think it'll ruin the effect if you have to wait for a PC to boot.  It has to feel like you are changing a cartridge, powering off/on or resetting, then the game is there, ready to play instantly.  That's what cartridges did.

I'd also say don't limit it to 4 or 5 games, if you're allowing cartridges, you might want to add a lot more in the future, so I'd design it around that.   :cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: pbj on May 21, 2021, 09:53:08 am
Just put a 60 in 1 in there and be done with it.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on May 21, 2021, 10:56:53 am
All that up there^  seems like an overengineering nightmare.

Reason has no place in here!  I want to see Ond do something crazy just because he can.   ;D

I like the idea - my only hesitation would be doing this on the side panel without the coin door instead of below the coin door itself.  Not only would all the action be on that one panel, the entire machine will be able to sit against a wall in a game room.  If there is stuff on all 4 sides, it will have to "float" in a room, which could be awkward.

But I love the creativity people are throwing out here.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: circusfreak on May 21, 2021, 11:02:46 am
I'd like to add my 0.02. For retro coolness, perhaps implement "The Clapper"? Done with Pac Man...CLAP CLAP.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on May 21, 2021, 11:40:58 am
Just put Siri or Alexa or whatever in there... "Legion: play Pacman"
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Hoopz on May 21, 2021, 03:05:27 pm
Anyway, my thought is that you could avoid doing anything with embedding connectors if you simply had different patterns cut into the sheet of acrylic. Depending on the combination of switches depressed from inserting the card, it would be recognized as a different game. Combine that with a key to lock it in place, if you want.

I like this idea.  With my cocktail cabinet I usually have a drink(s) and so I keep coasters on the glass.  It would be cool if you could design coasters to match your cabinet and also be used to change games.  Vigo's idea would eliminate any connectors that wouldn't react well to beverages.
Coasters with RFID chips or whatever that change the game based on placement would be cool.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 21, 2021, 07:10:39 pm

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: nitrogen_widget on May 21, 2021, 07:21:52 pm
Install win 7 on multiple USB thumbdrives.
Each one configured to boot up to a specific game.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 21, 2021, 07:35:12 pm
I hate to be the voice of reason by why not just a single button inside the coin door that makes the machine go to the next game in the list? Optionally another button to go back a game.

All that up there^  seems like an overengineering nightmare.

Too much cycling through games to get to the one you want.  I'm happy to implement my actual proposed design.  I've done similar linked control with Arduino before.

Ond... I just want to say I love the cartridge idea!  Reminds me of the Vectrex!

Regardless how it's done technically, I would think the most important thing should be that it should be instant (or as near as) for the games to switch.   If you have to accomplish that by rebooting or whatever, just please please please make it really quick.  I think it'll ruin the effect if you have to wait for a PC to boot.  It has to feel like you are changing a cartridge, powering off/on or resetting, then the game is there, ready to play instantly.  That's what cartridges did.

I'd also say don't limit it to 4 or 5 games, if you're allowing cartridges, you might want to add a lot more in the future, so I'd design it around that.   :cheers:

Why does it need to be instant Jimbo?   My priority for player control over game selection is very low for this machine.

Install win 7 on multiple USB thumbdrives.
Each one configured to boot up to a specific game.

Functional, but not very cool.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Malenko on May 21, 2021, 10:27:11 pm
Too much cycling through games to get to the one you want.
16 game matrix means you are at most 8 games away with a 2 button config :) Its a neat idea and I know you can pull it off and in style.

Are you going to add non-mame games like Pacman 256 or either pacman championship edition?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Vigo on May 21, 2021, 10:50:04 pm
My biggest concern would be hitting that sweet spot with magnetism and easy to grip and remove, without wiggling too much. Also, storage of the “disks” would need to be part of it. Having them lined up in a row would make a nice art piece on a wall above the machine.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: PL1 on May 21, 2021, 11:17:13 pm
I like the idea of magnets and switches.   ;D

The two possible issues that I see based on the current render are:

1. How do you grip the Pac-Man figure to remove it?  A finger hole in the eye?  An eject lever with a ghost on it?

2. The mostly-round shape of Pac-Man makes it a bit hard to align unless you make first contact with the points of the mouth.
- Maybe a rounded square or rounded rectangle with a mouth notch for the start button and the game name or mini-marquee above/behind the Pac-Man figure?
- That would allow you to make first contact with a flat edge then tilt the plate into position -- much easier to align than a mostly-round shape.
- If you're storing them upright in a bin so you can flip through them like albums at a record store, a flat bottom keeps the title at the top.

Scott
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 22, 2021, 01:22:19 am
I appreciate the feedback and critical thinking on the concept guys, it's a great way to fine tune and improve it.  You can see that It's less of a console cartridge approach and more of dual-purposing an artwork feature.  The decorative Pac-Man motiff could very well just be a static adornment on that panel with no practical function other than bling. Each 'Pac' would be labelled on the back with the game name.  Originally I thought off adding per game artwork decals to the front of each but I think that idea sucks now  :lol

Are you going to add non-mame games like Pacman 256 or either pacman championship edition?

If these games would work well i.e. not look out of place, they would be great to include!

My biggest concern would be hitting that sweet spot with magnetism and easy to grip and remove, without wiggling too much. Also, storage of the “disks” would need to be part of it. Having them lined up in a row would make a nice art piece on a wall above the machine.

Its a mechanical/physics challenge!  I'm sure I'll be trying various combinations of geometry and components to get it right.  I find that lots of fun!  One thing I had in mind was to use micro switches that are more sensitive than Cherry switches.  I've used some in the past that require only a very light pressure to switch on.

I like the idea of magnets and switches.   ;D  We think alike eh?  :laugh:

The two possible issues that I see based on the current render are:

1. How do you grip the Pac-Man figure to remove it?  A finger hole in the eye?  An eject lever with a ghost on it? Maybe the render doesn't show it well but there is a chamferd edge around each 'Pac'. Finger tips should fit nicely behind that to remove it.

2. The mostly-round shape of Pac-Man makes it a bit hard to align unless you make first contact with the points of the mouth. I'm fairly confident that the beveled edge around the cutout will help locate and align the shape. We'll see.
- Maybe a rounded square or rounded rectangle with a mouth notch for the start button and the game name or mini-marquee above/behind the Pac-Man figure?
- That would allow you to make first contact with a flat edge then tilt the plate into position -- much easier to align than a mostly-round shape.
- If you're storing them upright in a bin so you can flip through them like albums at a record store, a flat bottom keeps the title at the top.  I have in mind a nice custom made display case which could hold all 16 Pacs.  It could sit on a shelf. Each Pac module can rest on a triangular shape fitting the 'mouth' of each module.

Scott

Should the Pacs double as coasters? Hmm not sure  :-\ I feel they would get scratched up?  They could be re-designed so that the metal disc was larger and was covered in cloth or flock (and still work magnetically).

I have assignments due for my studies so I will be taking a few days off from the workshop.  In the meantime maybe some of you could give some thought to the "ultimate 16 games" to feature on Pac-Man Legion.  Pac-Man variations of course, and must include Frogger (my wife's request).  Other than that, what to include?  I'm reluctant to add any more buttons unless I really can't find games that suit.

When we get to proof of concept, I will do some videos of using the Pac system prototype.  In the end it either works well and looks right or it won't be used at all.   :cheers:

P.S. If you hate the look of the Pac, the start button etc it can be improved.  Rear lit acrylic, bigger, smaller, colors..whatever.  I still want to stay roughly within the scope of the concept though.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: PL1 on May 22, 2021, 04:09:40 am
1. How do you grip the Pac-Man figure to remove it?  A finger hole in the eye?  An eject lever with a ghost on it? Maybe the render doesn't show it well but there is a chamferd edge around each 'Pac'. Finger tips should fit nicely behind that to remove it.
The render does show a small chamfer on the back of the Pac, but when the Pac fits into the Pac-shaped recess, it looks like that chamfer will be covered.

Option 1:
Small chamfer on the shallow recess, taller chamfer on the back of the Pac.  (Pac thickness - recess depth = enough room to get fingers under the tall chamfer.)
- Might be difficult to match the diameters.

Option 2:
Maybe use some type of "finger grip" router bit on the outer perimiter of the Pac above the recess then a small chamfer on the part of the base that fits into the recess?
- Might make the Pac profile look odd.   :dunno

To use those bits on the outer perimeter of the Pac, you may need to make a center pivot point jig (recommended) or a "pipe jig" like the one mentioned here (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,138220.msg1453677.html#msg1453677) in LT's Mario Pedestal build.

Scott
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Jimbo on May 22, 2021, 08:15:51 am
Ond... I just want to say I love the cartridge idea!  Reminds me of the Vectrex!

Regardless how it's done technically, I would think the most important thing should be that it should be instant (or as near as) for the games to switch.   If you have to accomplish that by rebooting or whatever, just please please please make it really quick.  I think it'll ruin the effect if you have to wait for a PC to boot.  It has to feel like you are changing a cartridge, powering off/on or resetting, then the game is there, ready to play instantly.  That's what cartridges did.

I'd also say don't limit it to 4 or 5 games, if you're allowing cartridges, you might want to add a lot more in the future, so I'd design it around that.   :cheers:

Why does it need to be instant Jimbo?   My priority for player control over game selection is very low for this machine.

Just seems you're putting a load of effort in for a really cool effect, and to me a slow boot up might take you out of the 'cool-factor moment' and the experience of 'swapping a cartridge'.

Surely there must be a way to switch games without resorting to rebooting?  If you can send a signal to a PC to reboot, can't you send a signal to a script that kills a process and starts another?

Saying all that, whatever way you do it I have no doubt will be cool as hell anyway!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: BadMouth on May 23, 2021, 06:03:14 am
Reed switches and magnets
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on May 24, 2021, 08:14:52 am
.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: BadMouth on June 29, 2021, 07:46:10 pm
Quote
« Last Edit: June 14, 2021, 03:55:44 am by Ond »

Since there hadn't been any updates I was worried that my idea sent you into the feature creep abyss.
Now I'm even more worried.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on June 30, 2021, 02:19:52 am
I suspect the man is busy.

Was hoping to cross-ocean collaborate on something and I have been so busy myself that all I can do is check in here and pozt inane replies to stuff-
:dunno
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on July 03, 2021, 08:02:12 pm
Ha ha, nope, your idea BadMouth, is the best solution in terms of switch type and design simplicity.  I completed the Arduino code for it and tested - all good.

My setback with this project is a mistake I've made with the CRT dimensions.  It fits into the cab (just!) but sits too high for the top panel with no possibility of modification to solve the problem.  To be honest I'm not that disappointed, a slightly smaller CRT will be better aesthetically and functionally.  Finding another CRT is my challenge and could take some time.  Other than that bobby is right, I've been real busy with full time study.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on July 04, 2021, 06:35:09 am
Ha ha, nope, your idea BadMouth, is the best solution in terms of switch type and design simplicity.  I completed the Arduino code for it and tested - all good.

My setback with this project is a mistake I've made with the CRT dimensions.  It fits into the cab (just!) but sits too high for the top panel with no possibility of modification to solve the problem.  To be honest I'm not that disappointed, a slightly smaller CRT will be better aesthetically and functionally.  Finding another CRT is my challenge and could take some time.  Other than that bobby is right, I've been real busy with full time study.

Depending on what CRT you find, RGB or component modding it may be your next challenge :D
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: pbj on July 04, 2021, 04:27:04 pm
Ond, you are my bro but this is ---smurfing--- hilarious.

Onwards and upwards.

:cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: romshark on July 04, 2021, 06:33:57 pm
Each cartridge or plate will be made from acrylic sheet and embedded with a small connection point.  Each connection point will be binary coded to four bits allowing a maximum of 16 combinations.

1. The four bits will be monitored by some simple Arduino code which translates to a variable value for each binary combo.

2. Arduino will transmit the variable value via tx-rx serial connection to a USB port on the system PC

3. A batch file (which runs on boot) on the PC will listen for the variable value and execute the appropriate game in Mame.  Once the game is running the batch file will tell Arduino to stop sending anything with an tx response back.

4. Arduino will get it's power directly from the switched PC PS, so long as the machine is plugged in, Arduino will remain running regardless of the PC.  It will monitor for a cartridge change and we go back to step 1.

The novelty factor was too high to resist and is way more fun than just a switch solution.  Although in the end, it behaves much like the switch solution does anyway.  RFID could be used as well, but I think in this instance my solution is more simple.

This is weird. I had an idea to do the same type of thing a year or so ago (even down to just using 4 bits). My usage case though was for switchable control panels. One panel for Street Fighter type, one for 4-way, one for Neo-Geo, maybe even one for trackball and one for just lightguns. The front-end would use the Arduino to identify the panel and display a list of games that panel works best with, switching in real time.

I didn’t go forward with this idea since my knowledge of programming isn’t up for making a front-end.

Anyway, if you’re still going this route on your setup, I see that system rebooting is seen as unwanted by some. May I suggest the Arduino keeps monitoring the cart pins while the game is running. Then, if the cart is removed and all the pins go to low [ 0 ] (or high [ 15 ] if you’re using pull-up resistors instead), the Arduino momentarily activates a relay. This relay is connected to your keyboard encoder to activate ESC and quits out of MAME. Then, the batch routine loops and waits for the next cart to be put in.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on July 04, 2021, 07:31:46 pm
Depending on what CRT you find, RGB or component modding it may be your next challenge :D
If I find a decent CRT TV with component in, I'll use a VGA to component converter like yours just as before.  I note there's at least one guy here in Oz selling modded TVs but he's in NSW and the price is a bit high.  I'd be ok doing the mod you're talking about if I had to I think.

Ond, you are my bro but this is ---smurfing--- hilarious.

Onwards and upwards.

:cheers:

Yeah I know Jim, I knew you'd get a chuckle out of it.  :lol Meh, I make mistakes all the time, most of em I don't tell anyone about.  At least I didn't bust the neck of it!.  I still have a useless (too big) tube to get rid of now. On the plus side the cabinetry work is mostly done and the machine would be nice and comfortable to play (from an ergonomics point of view).
I doubt I'll score a kerbside freeby like this again though  :banghead:  A slighty smaller CRT 22" - 26" would be really nice in it.

This is weird. I had an idea to do the same type of thing a year or so ago (even down to just using 4 bits). My usage case though was for switchable control panels. One panel for Street Fighter type, one for 4-way, one for Neo-Geo, maybe even one for trackball and one for just lightguns. The front-end would use the Arduino to identify the panel and display a list of games that panel works best with, switching in real time.

I didn’t go forward with this idea since my knowledge of programming isn’t up for making a front-end.

Anyway, if you’re still going this route on your setup, I see that system rebooting is seen as unwanted by some. May I suggest the Arduino keeps monitoring the cart pins while the game is running. Then, if the cart is removed and all the pins go to low [ 0 ] (or high [ 15 ] if you’re using pull-up resistors instead), the Arduino momentarily activates a relay. This relay is connected to your keyboard encoder to activate ESC and quits out of MAME. Then, the batch routine loops and waits for the next cart to be put in.

Ha hah, yeah I stole your idea! Not really.  That's a good idea to cover cart removal mid game.  I've used Arduino before for relay control and they work really well for the task.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on July 04, 2021, 09:00:59 pm
If I find a decent CRT TV with component in, I'll use a VGA to component converter like yours just as before.  I note there's at least one guy here in Oz selling modded TVs but he's in NSW and the price is a bit high.  I'd be ok doing the mod you're talking about if I had to I think.

I'm pretty sure you'd be fine with it. The trickiest part is that every TV is a little different so a bit of research and thinking involved, but there are heaps of people doing it now and the information is out there. I even know a couple of people in Melbourne who could probably help you for the price of a few beers and a chat while having a look, lockdowns permitting.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on July 08, 2021, 07:56:11 pm
The saga continues ...  :lol.  So I found a nice nice working 24" Sony CRT TV.  This time I had to pay for it.  After some bargaining the price was ok for me.  Zebidee has been really helpful in advising me on mod approaches to use for the new unit  which I'm very grateful for.   I have to say regardless of how my efforts go, I'm having a lot of fun with the challenge!  My workshop is a mess with disassembled parts and tools all over the place.
If any particular mod approach is successful I'll cover it in detail in this thread.  If it doesn't work out I'll hush it up and we'll pretend it never happened  :laugh:

I guess the reason I'm enjoying the process is because I'm gaining new knowledge.  I generally learn stuff quickly, with help from you guys, even more so.  I have my eye open for more CRT TVs working or not, freebies or paid for.  Not just for this build but for future use (and some insurance).

The Sony OSD RGB mod I've seen, makes a lot of sense (for other brands as well).  This Sony unit is not suitable for that mod but we'll see.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on July 08, 2021, 11:20:44 pm
Good to hear you have found a candidate (and happy you may be finding time to work on fun stuff even?!)

I have a pile of Sony TVs here which sadly can't benefit from the brilliance of a GeenAntz so I am curious to see how you do also.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on July 09, 2021, 12:57:27 pm
If any particular mod approach is successful I'll cover it in detail in this thread.  If it doesn't work out I'll hush it up and we'll pretend it never happened  :laugh:

A very sensible approach! I won't say a thing  :-X

Most CRT TVs can be modded in some way. Learning how is not that hard, and once you know a few tricks you start to look at most CRTs as potential arcade monitors. Understanding how CRTs work is hand-in-glove with understanding many principles of electronics, so it can be seen as an "applied" way to improve your knowledge.

Good to hear you have found a candidate (and happy you may be finding time to work on fun stuff even?!)

I have a pile of Sony TVs here which sadly can't benefit from the brilliance of a GeenAntz so I am curious to see how you do also.

Many Sony TVs are good candidates for RGB modding, and RGB is King. Even so, component modding is another option and sometimes easier when you consider TVs often convert lesser signals (eg AV/composite/svideo) into component for processing via their "jungle" chips into RGB for injection to the CRT cathode guns. This means that the jungle chips may already have direct inputs designed for component video, even if they are not used.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: bobbyb13 on July 10, 2021, 01:22:39 am
I'm getting closer to understanding it all recently.

I'll just have to keep hoarding TVs until I'm a genius
:lol
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: XSFDriver on July 14, 2021, 08:06:11 am
I'm getting closer to understanding it all recently.

I'm hearin' ya there man, I've been pouring over threads here for months (even though I haven't been on here for a while)...and I think I can see some light at the end of the tunnel.... Yep, it's a tiiiiny little pixel, waaay off in the distance. :lol (Cool job on the 'ehukai project BTW Bobby)

Actually, OND, I wish I'd have read this last page earlier, about your CRT issue (I've been following it for a while up 'till then, love the pic's and the concept BTW, cool design)...every now and then I see CRT freebies on the footpath, did I read correctly?...are you in Melbourne? If so, I was thinkin' I might have been able to score you one,  :banghead: but I am about an hours drive west of Melbourne, and I see you've already got one to fit anyway.

Anyway, can't wait to see the next batch of pic's mate.
Cheers  :cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on September 01, 2021, 08:14:02 pm
I'm getting closer to understanding it all recently.

I'm hearin' ya there man, I've been pouring over threads here for months (even though I haven't been on here for a while)...and I think I can see some light at the end of the tunnel.... Yep, it's a tiiiiny little pixel, waaay off in the distance. :lol (Cool job on the 'ehukai project BTW Bobby)

Actually, OND, I wish I'd have read this last page earlier, about your CRT issue (I've been following it for a while up 'till then, love the pic's and the concept BTW, cool design)...every now and then I see CRT freebies on the footpath, did I read correctly?...are you in Melbourne? If so, I was thinkin' I might have been able to score you one,  :banghead: but I am about an hours drive west of Melbourne, and I see you've already got one to fit anyway.

Anyway, can't wait to see the next batch of pic's mate.
Cheers  :cheers:

Thanks XSFDriver, sorry this reply is way late but I haven't hardly looked at the forum in last many weeks except to send a few messages.  Just too damn busy with study. That is about to change however...

With about 2 weeks to go to term break and Spring being here I'm getting ready to get back into this here hobby.

Forum seems real quiet....nevertheless even if there's only bobbyb13 and me standing amongst tumbleweeds this project (and others) will continue to be posted...intermittently   wuteva!

Updates,  despite Zebidee's help I just couldn't get the Sony CRT to work with any video mod. Fortunes twist and turn my friends.  A few days later I scored not one but two free CRTs .  Both with component video inputs.  Both were in peoples curbside trash.  The first is a 27" CRT TV which has a slightly smaller (fractions of an inch) footprint than my first 27".  It fits in the cab!  That's what I designed for and that's what I'm going to use - all being well.

The second TV well, can I share a short story on that?   My wife and I were driving the neighborhood when I spied a lovely looking candidate lying on its back on the curbside.  I shouted "stopppp!"  We pulled over and I greeted the guy standing near his hard rubbish pile.  I said "do you mind if I take that TV mate?" He said "be my guest, it worked perfectly, sadly its all wet from the rain now - probably no good".  I told him that was no problem at all since I would disassemble it clean and dry it.  At that he walked inside and came back out with the remote!   :lol  The unit happens to be a Panasonic widescreen 100Hz progressive scan CRT.  Here in Aussie these TVs still sell for ~$450 to willing CRT enthusiasts. They are the last in line before the age of plasma's dawned. After some TLC it works perfectly and picture looks BEAUTIFUL. I have plans for this, but that's for another day. The guy also handed me an Xbox 360 ..."keeps re-booting, any good to you?" "Sure" say's I. Anyway picture of 27" tube crammed into cabinet: (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=388837;image) It looks too big right? But once the top plate is on it will be as per the design. Zebidee hooked me up with his mate here in Melbourne for my GreenAntz which is now on it's way to me. (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=388838;image) The guy even sent a video of the unit working with GroovyMame and a few select games - very crisp images indeed! See ya's all soon. :cheers: Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Zebidee on September 01, 2021, 10:06:59 pm Good news indeed, Ond! Those 100hz CRTs... they have some issues with regard to retrogaming. They do produce some artifacting, colour bleeding and "dot-crawl". I've never had a Panasonic but, at least, that's what I get with my Loewe 100hz CRT TV, and it seems pretty consistent with others. These issues are more noticable with 8-bit games, especially games with static solid areas of colour like Pac-Man and Mr. Do!. They look "OK", but there is a lot of noticeable colour bleed etc. However, they are GREAT for fast scrolling games like shmups, like Flying Shark or Batsugun, Raiden games, Cave games. The 100hz capabilities allow these CRTs to easily keep up with weird refresh rates like 55hz, possibly by doubling the scan rates, and prevents these scrolling games from looking "flickery". In short, my impression is that the 100hz CRTs want to "fill-in" the boring bits of old games like solid areas of colour (thus the issues above), but are great for video and fast-moving detailed action. So, maybe not so good for "Classic" era (roughly speaking, pre-1985 to 2000) games. If you want to put a 100hz into a cab, consider the games you want to play (I put my Loewe 100hz into a vertical cab and I love it for playing shmups). Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: bobbyb13 on September 01, 2021, 11:56:05 pm Difficult to quantify how much I have learned from always reading posts by you gents. What is more entertaining is I keep learning that I haven't even reached the equivalent of my sophomore year in this hobby yet. Ond, stoked you got a tube that suits the project so well. Oh, these fortuitous events in life! And quite the haul all way round I must say. Grandaddy used to tell me "At times, I'd rather be lucky than good" Even better when you're both! Good on ya Hope studies are going just as well. Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: BeastlyBoy on September 02, 2021, 05:57:01 am Outside the box thinking for cutting large clean curves. I'm postioning aluminium strip in place onto the plan with some nails. Now you can see why I needed 1:1 scale plans: (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=149895.0;attach=375390;image) Ancient history now but you can actually buy products that do this. https://www.amazon.co.uk/TREND-CURV-8X500-CURVE-GUIDE/dp/B0722YKXQN It's pretty expensive for what's essentially a strip of plastic but a handy thing to have. Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Zebidee on September 02, 2021, 07:55:13 am I have some long, flexible metal rulers that I use all the time, one over 1 metre long, and I used it in a similar way to Ond last time I needed to cut a curve for a monitor bay. Used less and smaller nails, but same principle. Ironically, I was inspired to make the curve by one of Ond's earlier builds. I took photos of the process, but they got lost with the phone I took them with. In my case I just applied the ruler directly to the plywood, between two fixed top and bottom points, to draw the curve. Then I cut it directly with a jigsaw, rather than making a paper template. I cut both left and right panels at same time to make sure they matched, and sanded down any inconsistencies with the curve on both pieces at the same time, to make sure they matched. There were no visible nail holes by the time it was done, and no metal rulers were harmed (they continue to be used). Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Martijn on September 02, 2021, 08:26:32 am Outside the box thinking for cutting large clean curves. I'm postioning aluminium strip in place onto the plan with some nails. Now you can see why I needed 1:1 scale plans: (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=149895.0;attach=375390;image) Ancient history now but you can actually buy products that do this. https://www.amazon.co.uk/TREND-CURV-8X500-CURVE-GUIDE/dp/B0722YKXQN It's pretty expensive for what's essentially a strip of plastic but a handy thing to have. Whoa, i wish i knew this sooner. i made my own like Ond did. And didnt turn out that even.. Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: BeastlyBoy on September 02, 2021, 09:01:57 am Yeah I tried a few manual methods but couldn't sleep at night with a curve I was working on being ever so slightly off center if you look really really close (we've all been there!). Hence I wound up spending 30 quid on a plastic strip haha. Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: wp34 on September 02, 2021, 09:38:58 am Outside the box thinking for cutting large clean curves. I'm postioning aluminium strip in place onto the plan with some nails. Now you can see why I needed 1:1 scale plans: (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=149895.0;attach=375390;image) Ancient history now but you can actually buy products that do this. https://www.amazon.co.uk/TREND-CURV-8X500-CURVE-GUIDE/dp/B0722YKXQN It's pretty expensive for what's essentially a strip of plastic but a handy thing to have. Thanks for the tip! Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Ond on September 12, 2021, 02:02:56 am Initial testing of GreenAntz VGA-Component transcoder: I received the transcoder in a padded mail bag. The board is small with closely placed components all hand soldered including some small SMD parts, quite impressive for being done by hand. I added some PCB feet to the board and hooked it up. The PC rig for this build is on the bench connected to both LCD and CRT for setup and config. (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=388929;image) GreenAntz unit connected to both VGA and Component cables (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=388930;image) Initial CRT images are good. Display is at (or close to) original game resolution. The CRT TV has an over-scan issue which I will need to correct in the service menu of the TV. (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=388931;image) Close inspection shows a crisp image. Just some minor adjustment needed. (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=388932;image) Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: bobbyb13 on September 12, 2021, 05:40:47 am Excellent... Nice to see you are getting some free time to work on that! If you don't mind my prying... What are your software and gpu choice here? Inquiring minds with recently aquired legit internet speeds want to know... ;D Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Ond on September 13, 2021, 12:44:49 am Excellent... Nice to see you are getting some free time to work on that! If you don't mind my prying... What are your software and gpu choice here? Inquiring minds with recently aquired legit internet speeds want to know... ;D No worries bobby, this system is running on a Core 2 Duo CPU, Windows 7 OS, Radeon HD 6670 GPU With GroovyMAME and CRT Emudriver (recent versions). The older hardware is just fine for this build. I'm also only using a 250Gb Samsung SSD drive. The hardware is all just stuff from older PCs no longer in use by my family. I spent much of the day hunting for a universal Logitech remote I thought I had (but seems I don't) that I wanted to use to access the service menu on the CRT TV. I ordered a suitable remote on eBay, it should be here in a few days. I just want to improve some geometry settings for the display and fix the over-scan issue it has. Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: bobbyb13 on September 13, 2021, 12:32:59 pm Thanks Ond. I imagjned such but nice to get confirmation. I struggle with CRT emudriver install and tuning myself and want to experiment with front ends finally and wonder about order of business. Hope your remote arrives soon so you can keep at it. Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: XSFDriver on September 15, 2021, 07:55:02 am That's comin' along nicely man... looks like you're nailin' it :applaud: Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Ond on September 15, 2021, 06:10:53 pm That's comin' along nicely man... looks like you're nailin' it :applaud: Thanks mate! It's kinda dumb on my part posting renders like that and then trying to live up to them. They are a good visual reference though to keep me on track. Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: XSFDriver on September 16, 2021, 05:17:19 am That's comin' along nicely man... looks like you're nailin' it :applaud: Thanks mate! It's kinda dumb on my part posting renders like that and then trying to live up to them. They are a good visual reference though to keep me on track. I dunno mate, I mean, I'm not blowin' sunshine on ya, but I reckon you couldn't be more spot on.... ...that's why I couldn't resist puttin' up your two pic's together like that.... ...besides, I know myself, (and probably a lot of others on here could relate...), It's a bit of a curse when these ideas pop into your head in a second, and then you've got this urge to actually create them. That's what I love about this site.... sooooo many ideas and cool creations, I think that's why I seem to be reading more on here than what I post... two "four letter words" come to mind... "Time" and "life" :lol (such as yourself with studies you mentioned) Anyway, can't wait to see the next batch of pic's, when you've got time, of course. Cheers :cheers: Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Ond on October 05, 2021, 06:43:06 am I spent the last few days getting the game switching rig working with my CRT. I don't want any visible signs of an operating system and everything has to synchronize nicely for a clean power up and game select. This means tweaking the Arduino code and the Operating system, testing and repeating. Until the cabinet is ready to properly seat the CRT with all its boards and the PC etc. I'll make use of the TV case to test the CRT for now. A bit of disassembly and reassembly required if I want to work on components tucked in under the tube. I'm getting quicker at the pull-down every time! Soldering some control cable to the button board - to allow the Arduino to switch AV modes after boot-up. (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=389063;image) Solder a relay in across the main switch - allowing the CRT to turn on when the PC boots. (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=389064;image) Refitted into the TV case before refitting the main board: (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=389065;image) The various boards that make up the switching assembly so far (this will probably grow!): (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=389066;image) A quick n dirty video to show the switching working.....yay! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LzU1_htumx8 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LzU1_htumx8) Next up, completing the proof of concept using Pacs and reed switches. Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: javeryh on October 05, 2021, 09:12:19 am I spent the last few days getting the game switching rig working with my CRT. I don't want any visible signs of an operating system and everything has to synchronize nicely for a clean power up and game select. This means tweaking the Arduino code and the Operating system, testing and repeating. Until the cabinet is ready to properly seat the CRT with all its boards and the PC etc. I'll make use of the TV case to test the CRT for now. A bit of disassembly and reassembly required if I want to work on components tucked in under the tube. I'm getting quicker at the pull-down every time! Soldering some control cable to the button board - to allow the Arduino to switch AV modes after boot-up. (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=389063;image) Solder a relay in across the main switch - allowing the CRT to turn on when the PC boots. (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=389064;image) Refitted into the TV case before refitting the main board: (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=389065;image) The various boards that make up the switching assembly so far (this will probably grow!): (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=389066;image) A quick n dirty video to show the switching working.....yay! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LzU1_htumx8 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LzU1_htumx8) Next up, completing the proof of concept using Pacs and reed switches. This is so clever. If I am understanding this correctly, you are going to have 5 switches inside of the cabinet and depending on how they are set a different game will boot with no ability to change games unless you reconfigure those switches? So on/on/on/on/on might boot Pac-Man but on/on/on/on/off might boot Ms. Pac-Man? What is the main thing driving this? A traditional PC or a single board computer? This is really original. Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Ond on October 05, 2021, 01:58:46 pm Thanks javeryh, you are correct about the binary combos determining which game to play. The testing with mechanical switches is just the first part. The next part is testing with reed switches and magnets i.e. no physical switching by hand just proximity activation. The reed switches I'm using are tiny hair like things. I'm going to mock up three initial Pacs to satisfy myself that the idea works as I'd imagined (and discussed a few pages back). It's just an old PC sitting behind this - the kind folks throw away these days. I'd briefly tested my Arduino code with regular mame on a laptop some time back, but this test was all about getting it to work properly with Groovymame and a CRT. Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: javeryh on October 05, 2021, 02:53:42 pm I remember people discussing different "keys" for the front of the machine that will determine the game once placed in the slot. I am really looking forward to seeing how this plays out. It's a super cool idea and I'm a huge fan of completely hiding the fact that there is a computer inside running the show. This way, there are no settings for anyone to ever mess up. I wish I had your computer/electronics knowledge - my brain is buzzing! :cheers: Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Zebidee on October 11, 2021, 09:32:52 pm Wow, impressive work Ond :applaud: ... And yet, this is just your prototype! Will look even better after you sort your reed switches out. Reed switch contact wires are often made of specially plated gold or copper (for flexibility+conductivity), probably why they're so thin! Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Ond on October 12, 2021, 03:06:07 am Thanks Zebidee, I got quite excited when this actually worked after several hours of messing about with it. A picture is worth a thousand words....so here's a render video and a pic to show the PAC game selection switching design: There will be 16 15 of these sitting in a little display stand to choose a game from. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AuDs4g42A_Y (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AuDs4g42A_Y) Magnets are embedded in the PAC to trigger reed switches in the mount panel. There is also a small metal plate embedded in each PAC which sticks to an embedded rare earth magnet in the mount plate. The PAC will attach in place around a small wedge shape which fits the 'mouth' of the PAC. The power button powers everything up or down. (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=389111;image) To switch to another game at any time, just change one PAC for another. No menu, no exit button. That's the theory anyway :D Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: wp34 on October 12, 2021, 10:03:45 am This is so cool. :cheers: Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: SpaceHedgehog on October 12, 2021, 10:29:44 am Damn, talk about innovative! Awesome solution :notworthy: Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: emphatic on October 12, 2021, 11:10:36 am :applaud: :cheers: Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: javeryh on October 12, 2021, 12:04:18 pm This is going to be so cool. 16 dedicated cabinets in one. The dream! Do we have a game list yet? 1. Pac-Man 2. Ms. Pac-Man 3. Frogger 4. Donkey Kong 5. Burger Time 6. Dig Dug 7. Eyes 8. Galaga 9. Lady Bug 10. Mr. Do! 11. Nibbler 12. Pengo 13. Space Invaders 14. Jr. Pac-Man 15. Pac & Pal 16. Donkey Kong Jr. DKII not here... hmmm... what would you change? Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Ond on October 12, 2021, 01:53:05 pm Pictures are a lot easier than words ...sometimes. That list is pretty close javeryh, I'll post my actual one soon. Glad you like the concept guys...work is in progress. Insomnia is keeping me up lately, this is the result... :lol (http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=164992.0;attach=389165;image) More soon... Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Ond on October 14, 2021, 03:52:18 am Ok, this was kind of important, getting the perfect list (for me) of 15 games for this machine. I originally mentioned 16 games but I need the '0000' number for control purposes, so 15 it is. Here is my list, quite similar to javeryh's suggestion with a few notable differences. I'm not a fan of Pac & Pal, it wasn't a particularly good variation of Pac-Man, so I'm leaving it out to fit in another game. I'd like a few vertical shooters so I'm putting in 4 favs into the list also. 1. Pac-Man 2. Pac-Man Plus 3. Ms. Pac-Man 4. Jr. Pac-Man 5. Pac-Mania 6. Frogger 7. Donkey Kong 8. Galaga 9. Burger Time 10. Dig Dug 11. Nibbler 12. Flying Shark 13. Aero Fighters 14. 19XX The War Against Destiny 15. 1943 The Battle of Midway If anyone feels strongly that something should replace anything (and why) I'm happy to hear suggestions :) otherwise this is it. Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: Malenko on October 14, 2021, 07:56:11 am The hardest thing in the world to do is change someone's mind on a game list but here goes...... For me, that's a bit too much pac. I don't know what Jr Pacman brings to the table that the rest don't. Wider mazes and no warps.....I'd rather play Ms.Pac. Maybe replace with a puzzle game like Tetris or Klax (or Puzzle Fighter?) Pac-Mania, Frogger, DK, Galaga, Dig Dug, and especially Burgertime are all wins and should definitely be on the list I like Ladybug a little more than Nibbler, I think the gates are a pretty neat variation but I see the appeal of Nibbler as well. I'd take 19XX over 1943 , then you have a slot for Mappy, Kangaroo, or DK Jr. My suggestions are based on having a bigger variety of games, but I also get that the cab is called Pac-Man Legion :) Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion Post by: javeryh on October 14, 2021, 08:53:38 am OK here's my$0.02...

Flying Shark, Aero Fighters, 19XX and 1943 are all 8-way games and you are building a very focused 4-way cabinet.  It's hard to include shmups because most are 8-ways.  Maybe you are planning on a ServoStik (which is excellent) but a legit 4-way might add to the authenticity in this case.

I also like Lady Bug, Mr. Do! and Eyes a lot and would not omit those.  I'm not a huge fan of Pac-Man Plus (I'm not even sure how it is different from Pac-Man) but this is a Pac-Man cabinet so I get it.  I've also never really played Pac-Mania... maybe I should since you and Malenko think highly of it.  Hmmm...

:cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Gilrock on October 14, 2021, 09:38:16 am
Yeah I like 1942 but with a 4-way joystick I had trouble playing it.  I'm sure 19XX and 1943 are similar.  I'd probably want Ghouls and Ghosts.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on October 14, 2021, 09:52:04 am
Yeah I like 1942 but with a 4-way joystick I had trouble playing it.  I'm sure 19XX and 1943 are similar.  I'd probably want Ghouls and Ghosts.

I would too but it's a vertical cabinet.  If we are opening it up to horizontal games... I can't live without Tetris (atetris).   ;D
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Malenko on October 14, 2021, 10:52:37 am
I'd probably want Ghouls and Ghosts.

So I need to amend my previous statement, I forgot that Klax and Puzzle Fighter are both horizontal games. But I distinctly remember a vertical tetris, it might have been a cocktail version or something.
If he is using an 8 way or servo stick, I vote Contra :p

I was going to jokingly suggest 10 yard fight.

Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on October 14, 2021, 11:38:41 am
I'd probably want Ghouls and Ghosts.

So I need to amend my previous statement, I forgot that Klax and Puzzle Fighter are both horizontal games. But I distinctly remember a vertical tetris, it might have been a cocktail version or something.
If he is using an 8 way or servo stick, I vote Contra :p

There is a cocktail version of Tetris (atetcktl) but it splits the screen in half so both players can play at the same time.  It fills the vertical screen but 1/2 of it being upside-down kills it for me.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Gilrock on October 14, 2021, 12:17:00 pm
Yeah I didn't think about orientation.  I play both orientations on my bartop just fine.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on October 14, 2021, 01:19:28 pm
OK here's my \$0.02...

Flying Shark, Aero Fighters, 19XX and 1943 are all 8-way games and you are building a very focused 4-way cabinet.  It's hard to include shmups because most are 8-ways.  Maybe you are planning on a ServoStik (which is excellent) but a legit 4-way might add to the authenticity in this case.

I also like Lady Bug, Mr. Do! and Eyes a lot and would not omit those.  I'm not a huge fan of Pac-Man Plus (I'm not even sure how it is different from Pac-Man) but this is a Pac-Man cabinet so I get it.  I've also never really played Pac-Mania... maybe I should since you and Malenko think highly of it.  Hmmm...

:cheers:

I'd like to second javery's suggestions. Pac-man is best played with a 4-way, and you really need an 8-way to play those shmups. Also, those the shmups listed are all post-classic era games (except Galaga). On the other hand, Galaxian, Space Invaders, DK Jr., Lady Bug and Mr. Do! are excellent vertical games, from the same "classic" period as Pac-man, that can be played with a 4-way.

If you stick to classic-era 4-way vertical games you can't go wrong. There are plenty to choose from. If you love shmups as much as I do, then make your next cab into a dedicated vertical shmups cab with some cool art n stuff.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on October 14, 2021, 03:52:49 pm
This is excellent feedback and advice fella's, thanks!  I forgot to mention that I was intending to use servostiks for 4-8 way switching.  On that though, I have no experience with them, I'd love to include the shmups on this nice big CRT cab but if the advice is against using servostiks for any reason then I'll reconsider including 8 way games.

@ Malenko, I hear you on Jr. Pac-Man it's almost as weak as Pac & Pal but hey, it's a Pac_Man themed cabinet like you said.

I like the craziness of Nibbler but I'll look at Ladybug to compare (never played it).
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: emphatic on October 14, 2021, 03:59:59 pm
I would add Namco Classics Collection Vol 1 & 2 to that list. The arrange modes are insane. Also Space Invaders '91 and Galaga '88 are really good for 4-way controls. I'm guessing Aero Fighters is on the list for nostalgic reasons?

https://youtu.be/ABDTgW9akZA
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on October 14, 2021, 04:59:14 pm
The namco collections are a great way to cheat 6 games for the price of 2 plus the “remix” versions of each game are a lot of fun.  You get Mappy, Xevious and Galaga on one and Pac-Man, Dig Dug and Rally-X on the other.  You would be doubling up on Pac-Man though which I assume you want to run in it’s original form.

I would definitely check out Lady Bug.  It’s so fun and as a maze game it fits your cabinet very well.  Same thing with Mr. Do! - if you only want one “digging game” I would pick that over Dig Dug though both are great.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Vigo on October 14, 2021, 07:51:52 pm
Any thoughts on including high speed versions of the Pac games?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on October 14, 2021, 07:59:47 pm
Any thoughts on including high speed versions of the Pac games?

2.  Pac-Man Plus - is a speedy version of Pac-Man are there others (not bootleg)?
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Vigo on October 14, 2021, 10:00:30 pm
There were speedup kits for Pac-Man, ms pac, and pac Jr (and galaga), I believe. They weren’t bootleg boards, but a hack rom kit that would increase the speed on original hardware. There were extremely popular at least in my area in the day, so I am almost more used to the sped up versions.

I (think) the Pac-Man 25th anniversary had speedup versions added into its dip settings. It might be worth considering including the 25th with dip settings defaulting for speedup on, which would give you pac, ms pac and Galaga sped up on one official rom. At least unless my memory is faulty on that. Worth trying at least to see if you feel it is worth it or not.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: PL1 on October 14, 2021, 10:56:41 pm

Scott
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on October 15, 2021, 12:39:04 am
I like the craziness of Nibbler but I'll look at Ladybug to compare (never played it).

Ladybug is a fascinating game, kinda like a cross between Pac-man and tetris. The gates that change state as you pass them, opening or closing pathways, add a unique puzzle dimension.

Back when I did gov tech/comms/IT policy work, I had a 20" upright vertical cab I'd restored from junk in the staff amenities/breakout room with a 48-in-one board installed. Ladybug was one of the games, but I never got very good at it. I blamed the fixed 8-way joystick which made it hard to accurately make turns. Definitely a game for a 4-way.

One of the ministers I worked for enjoyed Ladybug a lot, and it is rumoured that he occasionally snuck into the building late at night to get a fix.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on October 15, 2021, 03:14:42 pm
I always end up gaining from asking for feedback and opinions on these kinds of things.  Some good stuff to consider to fine tune my game-list.

Speed set-up Pac-Man version options
4way - 8way joystick considerations
:cheers:

The next thing on my list to do is the PAC prototype.  I worked hard at my studies this week to free up my weekend.  This part of the build should be fun (and god I hope it works  :lol).
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on October 16, 2021, 06:55:09 pm
A very enjoyable day spent yesterday getting the PAC prototype up to a first coat of primer.

There's a bit of discussion at the moment about surface finishing and painting so I did a video of the whole process to share it here:

Pics of the work on the  PAC so far:

Next I'll build the cabinet side of the PAC system which includes reed switches and mounting magnet.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: BadMouth on October 16, 2021, 08:33:00 pm
Excellent progress!  Hopefully you are enjoying the proccess.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Zebidee on October 16, 2021, 08:37:32 pm
Nice one Ond, good vid

Love the mask, even though we've all had enough of them lately.

I like your careful measurements method for mixing paint
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: pbj on October 16, 2021, 09:55:34 pm
Enough messing around, let’s see you finish a project.

:cheers:
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: SpaceHedgehog on October 17, 2021, 01:49:51 am

Great stuff!
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: javeryh on October 17, 2021, 08:23:05 am
Great video!  I cannot get over how thin the paint is before spraying.  Is it because you are using oil-based paint or should latex also be thinned like that?

Also, are you supposed to completely clean out the paint gun between coats?  So if you want to put on 2 coats, you spray, clean entire gun and then sand and put on the second coat?

Can’t wait to see more of how this is all going to work.
Title: Re: Pac-Man Legion
Post by: Ond on October 17, 2021, 06:21:09 pm
Enough messing around, let’s see you finish a project.

:cheers:

Excellent progress!  Hopefully you are enjoying the proccess.

Yah, credit to you mate, you gave me the reed switches and magnets idea.

Love the mask, even though we've all had enough of them lately.

Heh, Covid PPE masks and that mask - chalk & cheese.  If I didn't wear that I'd keel over from paint fumes in about 2 mins.

Great stuff!

;D some things really aren't that complicated....

Great video!  I cannot get over how thin the paint is before spraying.  Is it because you are using oil-based paint or should latex also be thinned like that?

Also, are you supposed to completely clean out the paint gun between coats?  So if you want to put on 2 coats, you spray, clean entire gun and then sand and put on the second coat?

Can’t wait to see more of how this is all going to work.

Thanks buddy, that video took longer to put together than the woodwork did  :lol  Anyway maybe its useful to folks  :dunno.  The main reason I use acrylic enamel is because of the solvent base.  It dries fast which is a big part of the results!  Water based paints stay wet much longer and make handling paint runs much more of a challenge.  OND Tip #1.   :laugh:

Cleaning the paint gun is quick.  As soon as I'm finished spraying the excess paint mix goes into a sealed jar for use later.  I put a small amount of solvent in the gun, spray it through and its clean, ready for re-use.

I'll work on the PAC mount plate next, then I can test the prototype to see if it actually works.  Fingers crossed.