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Author Topic: The Starcade (FINISHED)  (Read 25522 times)

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Dalgaard

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The Starcade (FINISHED)
« on: January 04, 2012, 12:13:00 pm »
Hey guys :)

I thought I would start out simple. So there wont be anything here, that you havent already seen 100 times before. Still wanted to share my build with you though :)

But here it goes, my first attempt at an arcade! As you can see I was heavily inspired by Konig, since I love his simple, clean cabinets. My build is basicly a hybrid between Project Mame and TaitoRama.

I have yet to find a theme for the cabinet...Ill have to think hard the next few days!

UPDATE:

The finished cabinet
« Last Edit: April 16, 2012, 12:19:19 pm by Dalgaard »

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2012, 12:19:26 pm »

First i sat down and built a prototype using cardboard...just to get a general idea of the design i was going for. X-arcade theme? Maybe...Anyway, its unthemed and unnamed at the moment!
Then I cut out 1 side using 19mm MDF and used that side to cut out a second side. I then sanded the two sides, so they would be identical.

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2012, 12:28:56 pm »
I cut out a 60x50cm wide buttomplate, also using 19mm MDF. My cabinet isnt going to be that deep, since I plan on using a flatscreen monitor. The wife sorta insisted, that I kept the thing as small as possible. I then added some wooden supports, that would be used for putting everything together. I then added some heavy-duty rubber wheels so this cabinet would be easy to move around. These cost a bit, but I thought it was worth it. I suspect this thing is going to be HEAVY :(
I wanted this to be sturdy, so I used bolts to make sure, that the wheels wouldnt go wobly and fall off. The whole thing seems rock stead at this point :) Anyway...the buttom got glued and screwed onto one of the sides that I cut out earlier. Obviously I had to mount the buttomplate a bit higher than the buttom of the cabinet so the wheels wouldnt show.

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2012, 12:54:09 pm »
I then built the lightbox by adding two evenly spaced boards
One of the boards is deeper than the other to leave room for wiring and the speaker board, that will go beneath the smaller board.
At this point I forgot to take pictures of the next few things I added...I kinda got caught up in a building frenzy...It was exciting assembling the whole thing and finally get it to stand up! :)

The speaker board was added and I still have plenty of room behind it for installing the speakers and wiring.

I added a shelf in the lower half of the cabinet to further stabilize the whole thing. It's fixed in place, so I really hope that I wont need to move it later on...well...I simply CANT move it.

There is still plenty of room in the buttom for...well..for whatever im going to put down there. I also built a frame, where the cabinet door is going to be and some "rollers?" for the drawer.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2012, 12:55:44 pm by Dalgaard »

kb84

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2012, 01:02:29 pm »
Looking really good- now you just need to set a theme.  :applaud:.

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2012, 01:06:08 pm »
Yes! I really need a theme...but thats a lot harder than I expected. When I started out I was sure that what I had in mind was perfect...but now...im not so sure. For every project I view here on this forum I get new ideas and Im finding it really hard to find a theme :(

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2012, 01:09:54 pm »
I made a really simple drawer to hold the keyboard and mouse. I wanted to use some higher quality sliders for the drawer, but those were simply too expensive. These are completely basic with a rolling system. I don't plan on using the drawer much, which is why I figured this would be a good place to save some money. It can easily be changed later if I get tired of the cheap ones.
I installed the drawer which works perfectly by the way!

The shelf that I added earlier for stability is perfect for holding the computer. The computer im using is dual-core IBM in a small casing, which should be more than enough to run these old games. I really want to add an external powerbutton, so that I wont have to open the cabinet door to turn the system on or off. Ill have to look into this later...im sure I can find a tutorial somewhere :)
« Last Edit: January 04, 2012, 01:11:58 pm by Dalgaard »

kb84

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2012, 01:11:15 pm »
I know exactly how you feel. I just recently started my first project and have went through the same thing. I eventually decided I was going to make my bartop more 80's/vertical based so I went with a Donkey Kong theme as he has always been one of my favorite characters/games- but as soon as I painted and setup my artwork for order I got a ton of other ideas from what other users had done.... I guess I'll have to build more cabinets once this one is done.

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2012, 01:13:58 pm »
Haha, I think you're right! I always thought that I would only build one cabinet...but now im not so sure...Im hooked! Donkey Kong is cool btw, I was also considering that :)

Woodshop Flunky

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2012, 01:19:09 pm »
Yes! I really need a theme...but thats a lot harder than I expected.

I spent a lot of time on the theme for my build.  A couple of things that helped me...

1. Start sketching ideas early.  Even if you can't draw, keep a series of sketches and your ideas won't be lost.
2. Goggle an "idea", then select the "Images" tab.  I Googled "Classic Arcades", "Dogfights", "Aircraft Art", "80's design"... and a bunch more.  As I looked at the images from the search results, it spawned new ideas for my theme.
3. Go to any place that has arcade machines.  I went to places that had arcades, and just walking around looking at the games for inspiration.
4. After you think you've got a good theme, revisit it often.  I tweaked my theme all the way to the end.

Keep at it. :)

Complete mini arcade cabinet plans available.

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2012, 01:34:20 pm »
Thats some really good advice. Thanks :) I'll be spending a few hours on google tonight since the misses is out anyway. But I'll keep comming back like you suggested...eventually some theme is going to "talk" to me.

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #11 on: January 04, 2012, 01:35:03 pm »
A closeup of the hinges for the door and the frame thats essentialy a "cabinet in the cabinet". This way the door is going to be a nice, tight fit.
I cut out the door to the cabinet which is exactly 60cm. These kitchendoor hinges are the only hinges I know that can open a door in such a tight fit.

I also made a halfmoon hole for opening the door. This won't be seen once the door is in place, and I prefer this instead of a knob.

The holes on the outside will be filled with woodputty and then sanded. You'll never see them once the painting/artwork is in place.
I added some softclose fitting to the hinges. The door operation will be silky smooth :) A nice little detail that didn't really cost me anything since I had some leftover from when I built my kitchen a few months back.
The door is mounted and works perfectly. Its such a tight fit, that theres nearly no gap. The hinges were adjustable but that wasn't even needed.

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #12 on: January 04, 2012, 01:42:01 pm »
Let there be light! :) I decided on an ultra simple way to fix my marquee light. I bought a really cheap light that gives off a nice, soft yellow light. I screwed the lamp onto two sticks which fit perfectly in the lightbox. This was it was completely centered and easy to adjust depth-wise once I get a marquee on this baby.
The cabinet door closed and the lights are on :) I love the soft light that this cheap lamp offers. Im hoping it will be perfect for the marquee but I really have no clue. I guess I'll have to wait and see...

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #13 on: January 04, 2012, 01:47:34 pm »
I got my hands on a 21.3 inch 4:3 monitor! Its a samsung syncmaster 214T and it only cost me around 100$. It was really hard for me finding non-widescreen monitors larger than 19". I figured 19" inches would be too small, which is why im really excited about getting this. The only downside is that its silvercolor, which means I might have to paint the monitor casing black so it will be completely invisble once I add the bezel.

Thats all I have for now...im working on the controlpanel and finding someone who can make the artwork for me.

Stay tuned :)

kb84

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #14 on: January 04, 2012, 02:33:14 pm »
Do you have an idea of what you want the control panel artwork to be? It's not to difficult to setup and I could help you out.

stefano

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #15 on: January 04, 2012, 02:34:23 pm »
Very nice and proportional cabinet!
Keep the images flowing...

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #16 on: January 04, 2012, 02:54:59 pm »
Thanks :)

About the controlpanel I really don't have any idea what the artwork is gonna be since im still picking a theme. All I know is that I want 2 joysticks + 6 buttons for each player and 1P and 2P buttons on top. On the front of the controlpanel I want 4 buttons in total...one for volume up, one for volume down and two more for exit and pause respectively.

My problem atm is finding a good angle for the controlpanel. Im thinking somewhere around 10 degrees for a stand-up cabinet like this. Im affraid that a higher angle will make my wrists suffer after hours of play. But any suggestions?

Also...whats a good way to fool around with button placement and setup? Simply print out some regular paper or is there a smarter way to do this in a drawing program or something?




Hi-TEK

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #17 on: January 04, 2012, 03:03:06 pm »
Nice start to your build, it looks like all the prep work is paying off. For your monitor you can use some black vinyl dye and it will cover it up nicely or take the route I did with my bartop and use some tinted plexi on the outside to shield it. For your button layout, the best templates can be found here: http://www.slagcoin.com/joystick/layout.html

"Don't just stand there! Shoot something!" - Duke Nukem
The Invader Bartop - http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=116345.0

kb84

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #18 on: January 04, 2012, 03:08:31 pm »
I usually use Photoshop or visio to design as I am most comfortable in those applications and its easy for me as I use them for my day job. If you don't have access to those or experience with them- Mameroom had a tool to design control panels and is still available online at http://www.mameroom.com/files/mameroomcpd.zip.

Le Chuck

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #19 on: January 04, 2012, 06:28:50 pm »
Yes! I really need a theme...but thats a lot harder than I expected.

I spent a lot of time on the theme for my build.  A couple of things that helped me...

1. Start sketching ideas early.  Even if you can't draw, keep a series of sketches and your ideas won't be lost.
2. Goggle an "idea", then select the "Images" tab.  I Googled "Classic Arcades", "Dogfights", "Aircraft Art", "80's design"... and a bunch more.  As I looked at the images from the search results, it spawned new ideas for my theme.
3. Go to any place that has arcade machines.  I went to places that had arcades, and just walking around looking at the games for inspiration.
4. After you think you've got a good theme, revisit it often.  I tweaked my theme all the way to the end.

Keep at it. :)

Couldn't agree more.  I'm a very art driven designer and really can't emphasize the importance of finding a theme you like.  The last thing you want is to finish a great cab and be so-so about the art.  I put the art on the back burner for my first cab and was never happy with it.  I haven't made that mistake since.  Great start  :applaud: Have fun!

GregD

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #20 on: January 04, 2012, 08:15:05 pm »
I usually use Photoshop or visio to design as I am most comfortable in those applications and its easy for me as I use them for my day job. If you don't have access to those or experience with them- Mameroom had a tool to design control panels and is still available online at http://www.mameroom.com/files/mameroomcpd.zip.

Not to thread jump, but does anyone know if there are instructions anywhere for this design tool?  I can't even figure out how to change the size of the control panel.  Thanks

CREDO

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #21 on: January 04, 2012, 09:27:52 pm »
My problem atm is finding a good angle for the controlpanel. Im thinking somewhere around 10 degrees for a stand-up cabinet like this.

Im building my upright at the moment, i went with a 10 degree angle, its not playable yet, but it feels right just standing in front of it.

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #22 on: January 05, 2012, 07:29:20 am »
@Hi-Tek: Thanks for the tip with the monitor. I'll see what I can get my hands on when I get to that part. Still a way to go until I'll have to tackle that problem but vinyl dye sounds like the way to go :) Oh and thanks for the link to slagcoin...that site has everything!

@Kb84: Thanks for the link! Like GregD says it seems sorta complicated but I've only just opened it. Will have to check it out further. Thanks again :)

@Credo: 10 degrees was exactly what I was thinking...Good to hear it feels comfortable to play. I did a lot of measuring today, and figured out, that im going to angle my CP 8 degrees, since that will look better because some of the cabinets lines will align perfectly at this angle. It's raining alot today, otherwise I would have built my controlpanel...but that will have to wait I guess. Damn Scandinavian weather.

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #23 on: January 05, 2012, 10:24:19 am »
The design of my controlpanel is going to be really simple (like everything else in my build). I love my Festool saw that cuts angles when needed. The 2 meter guide that comes with this saw is also a big plus!

After a lot of measuring last night, I settled on an angle of 8 degrees for the controlpanel.
When finally installed the controlpanel will be raised about 2 mm and also a piece og 3 mm plexi will go on top.

Im still considering if the controlpanel needs to be hinged so I can open it. It should be pretty accessible even if I don't hinge it, but obviously it would be impossible to make big changes to it unless its hinged. But I honestly don't think I will be making any big changes once I get this cabinet running. Either way it should be easy changing switches and wires without it being able to open.
The monitor is still standing on the drawer, which ofcourse isn't the long-term plan ;) I figured it would be best to wait with monitor installation until the controlpanel dimensions were completed.

When standing infront of the machine (pretending to play games :) ) the angle of the controlpanel seems perfect. I hope im right, since It would suck if it was too much of a strain on the wrists after many hours of play.

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #24 on: January 05, 2012, 10:27:18 am »
I really want to keep the controlpanel simple without too many buttons. I can't stand watching CPs with 100s of buttons...

6 action buttons for each player should be sufficient, or should I add a 7th or even an 8th button? Im having a hard time finding any games that I wont be able to play just fine with just 6 buttons. What are your thought on this? :)
« Last Edit: January 05, 2012, 10:51:09 am by Dalgaard »

GregD

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #25 on: January 05, 2012, 10:49:20 am »
Six buttons is plenty.  I think people add the seventh to get the Neo Geo layout.  I see no need for 8 but there may be a reason for it.

kb84

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #26 on: January 05, 2012, 11:02:35 am »
I'd say go with a 6 button as well- pretty standard and will cover a lot of games. Everything is looking really good- I can't wait to see it completed.  :)

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #27 on: January 05, 2012, 02:39:01 pm »
I prefer 7 buttons for neo-geo.  You can even wire up the 7th and the top left button to the same input.

Basically it feels better on 4 button games and only takes 1 small button space.



As for the other buttons you will want.  Coin 1/2, player 1/2, exit, and pause.  Some opt for pinball as well.  You can always use shift buttons but I really like having those as dedicated buttons on my cab.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2012, 02:41:15 pm by Green Giant »
"He lives down there in his valley,
The cat stands tall and green,
Well, he ain't no prize, and there's no women his size,
And that's why the cat's so mean"
Toxic Arcade, my first build

Hi-TEK

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #28 on: January 05, 2012, 04:17:44 pm »
I did 6 player buttons on each side for my bartop as well as Player 1 and Player 2. I added 4 additional buttons (2 on each side) for administrative functions which include coin return and ESC'ing out of games and back to the front-end.
"Don't just stand there! Shoot something!" - Duke Nukem
The Invader Bartop - http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=116345.0

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #29 on: January 08, 2012, 05:52:15 pm »
Today I got my mount for the screen. It's gonna be so nice to get the monitor out of the drawer and into a fixed position in the cabinet. It's a very basic VESA100 mount, that can only be mounted in a fixed position. The good thing about this model is that its very flat. It only adds about 1 cm to the depth of the screen. Also its very easy to install and only cost me around 15$.
The monitor is in! It took me a long time to get the position just right...but I think I nailed it. The angle seems good :)

Dalgaard

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Re: My first attempt at an arcade :)
« Reply #30 on: January 08, 2012, 06:12:11 pm »
Finally! I found a theme for my cabinet. But since im a HORRIBLE artist I still need someone to draw it for me  :banghead:

So far finding a theme has been the hardest part about building an arcade cabinet...

At first I wanted to build a themed one with either Donkey Kong or Street Fighter...but then I thought "Everyone has that!"....After a while I decided that it didn't really matter since im probably the only guy in town with an arcade machine. So locally it's still gonna be unique even if I went with the DK or Street Fighter theme.

In the end I decided to go with a more universal design and not use a game specific theme.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2012, 02:50:20 pm by Dalgaard »

Dalgaard

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Re: The Starcade
« Reply #31 on: January 14, 2012, 12:12:09 am »
We're closing in on the overall style of the arcade now. In my opinion the artist is doing a real good job so far! We're hitting that 80's retro feeling that I was aiming for.

Here's the marquee as it's looking now:


Le Chuck

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Re: The Starcade
« Reply #32 on: January 14, 2012, 12:28:36 am »
Pimp-a-licious   :afro:  seriously that marquee is the hotness!  :applaud:

Dawgz Rule

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Re: The Starcade
« Reply #33 on: January 14, 2012, 04:39:48 am »
Love the Marquee.  Totally 80's.....totally.

Dalgaard

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Re: The Starcade
« Reply #34 on: January 17, 2012, 10:24:48 am »
More artwork progress :) The controlpanel, sideart and kickplate.




Le Chuck

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Re: The Starcade
« Reply #35 on: January 17, 2012, 11:04:07 am »
 :woot  Fantastic!!  Vibrant, original, I am totally on board with this!   :applaud:  :applaud:

DaveMMR

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Re: The Starcade
« Reply #36 on: January 17, 2012, 11:45:04 am »
Groovy artwork Dal.  I'm digging it.  :cheers:

 :afro:

Dawgz Rule

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Re: The Starcade
« Reply #37 on: January 17, 2012, 03:17:30 pm »
Lovin' It.  The colors are awesome.

Blanka

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Re: The Starcade
« Reply #38 on: January 17, 2012, 03:48:38 pm »
Wasn't there another Starcade in history some time with groovalicious artwork?

Green Giant

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Re: The Starcade
« Reply #39 on: January 17, 2012, 04:43:51 pm »
Wasn't there another Starcade in history some time with groovalicious artwork?
Maybe you are remembering


But regarding this artwork, I feel like it is being wasted on an arcade.

This needs to be on a disco ball spinning jukebox.
"He lives down there in his valley,
The cat stands tall and green,
Well, he ain't no prize, and there's no women his size,
And that's why the cat's so mean"
Toxic Arcade, my first build

  
 

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