Barcade Project

There is text between pictures.

This post is just to document some progress on the new arcade system I’m building.  This way I won’t lose the pictures I’ve taken.  🙂

So, I started by ordering a kit of CNC cut MDF, which is a short cut for those of us with little patience.  It basically just arrives as a box of wood:

Box of Wood

Using a kreg jig,  self-tapping screws, wood glue, etc, I started to have something resembling a bartop arcade box:

Stack of wood
Using jig to cut recessed screw holes

Beauty looking to play some Frogger.

Next deal was to take an old 19″ LCD monitor, and remove the panel from the plastic housing.  I took out all the screws I could find, but ended up busting the case into pieces anyway.  Doesn’t matter, this thing will never be a computer monitor again.  Used some pieces of 1×2 to build up a support on the back, then attached the monitor to the MDF piece which fits in the cabinet:

Stacking wood on top of panel screw hole
Two mounting points ready
Monitor attached to MDF backer board
Monitor temporarily in place to see if it fits.

At this point it was time to finally start building the control panel.  I bought two Sanwa joysticks from Japan, and a bunch of Happ arcade buttons.  These are the same hardware they use to make Ms Pacman and Galaga.

My trusty soldering iron
One wire soldered, many to go.

Inserted one joystick and one button into control panel:  (Monica was kind enough to paint the control panel black for me.  If I had done it there would be runs and strange lines and smudges.)

Under control panel is ugly.

Installed the other joystick, and all the buttons.  Pictures show completed setup, then hardware underneath, then everything wired together into a USB controller.  God help me if any of that doesn’t work right.

It’s so pretty…
Buttons with micro-switches attached.
Wires, wires, wires. Wires.

Here it is before and after a coat of black paint:

After that I finally cut/painted the Plexiglas so you can’t see the edges of the monitor:

Last two steps will be the marquee and the back door.

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