Monday, 27 August 2012

Kick box (post 1)

I’m currently constructing a new wooden kick box to replace the damaged kick box that originally came with the cabinet. The existing kick box had bits chipped off at the corners and also showed evidence of water damage. I had previously paid a carpenter to make a replacement kick box but I was not happy with the result. It did not seem very strong.

I’m going to improve on the existing box through a number of modifications. Firstly, I’m increasing the height of the box, so the cabinet and the Vectrex screen are higher. This will allow tall persons (such as me) to comfortably play the machine (I'm too old to suffer neck aches).  Secondly I am considering some metal feet for the kick box which will protect the box base from scuffs if the cabinet is dragged across the floor. This also provides some protection from water damage as the wooden walls of the box would be raised off the ground.  Finally, I've seen some company built arcade cabinets that have wheels positioned on their rear making it easier for them to be moved. The wheels are positioned so that the cabinet can be tilted and the pushed or pulled rather like a sack truck hand trolley. I want to make my cabinet look like a real cabinet rather than a home cabinet, so having such wheels will help make that aim more convincing.

I just received some bits I ordered from for the wooden kick box. These guys are good guys and very helpful. They sell a whole lot of parts for the would-be arcade system maker.
I bought four cabinet slides and two cabinet wheels.  Regarding the cabinet slides I had thought whether I really wanted these or perhaps levelling feet instead to compensate for uneven floor surfaces. However, given my cabinet will be placed on relatively thick carpet pile I felt I could get away with cabinet slides instead. The slides are round and will make it easy to fine position the cabinet resting place.  The mouting of the wheels will require some careful thought. They will need to be arranged in the kick box so they are on the back wall of the box but affixed in such a way that not all weight is on the back wall when the cabinet is tilted. Ideally they would not be very visually obtrusive either and would only touch the floor when the cabinet is titled.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Installation of the marquee backlight

The cabinet didn't come supplied with back lighting for the marquee and the area for the back light was masked of with a black plastic panel. However, it did come with a wooden panel for mounting a light. This panel slides into the marquee area. Also mounted on this panel is a speaker. When the panel is slid in, the speaker position is directly above a slotted area (resemebles a grill)  underneath the marquee to allow the sound from the speaker to get through.

Today I mounted the light fitting and light onto the panel.

I am now able to slide this panel into the marquee area. See below with the backlight switched on! Next is some perspex and artwork. I could have different artwork depending on the game installed but to begin with I am going with the European Vectrex logo. This will be a sticker (I ordered from bigange83 on a transparent blue background perspex.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Wooden screen bezel complete...

A new wooden screen bezel is complete and installed....Admittedly the Vectrex screen looks small, but the proportions look right, and the screen doesn't look ridicously small or silly  in the cabinet.

Actually, this is not the end of it. I have a friend who is kindly machining with a CNC machine a perspex bezel that will sit on top of the wooden bezel. In addition I have just ordered a sheet of glass that will sit on top of the perspex bezel.

Monday, 6 August 2012

Lamp purchased for Marquee

Purchased and received the lamp and fitting that I will use for lighting the marquee. I was considering whether to used LED backligting or conventional tube. In the end I opted for a fluorsecent tube as this is what was used in the early arcade systems. The fittting is a  T5 Link Fluorescent Fitting(15484) normally used for under cupboard lighting in kitchens. This fitting  accomodates a  300mm length  8w T5 type tube. I bought this on ebay from tradesmanelectrical.

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Ongoing work...

Directly following on from my previous post, here is a picture of the front of the cabinet. The Vectrex is supported by a wooden frame with a hole that accomdates the rear of the Vectrex. As the front of the Vectrex is bigger than the rear, it is unable to fall through the frame. I put the Vectrex at an angle otherwise if positioned completely upright, the height of the cabinet would have to be increased and the Vectrex raised even higher so that its screen suited to the player's eye level. Putting the vectrex at an angle means that people of different heights can all see the screen. My carpenter is currently completing a new wooden screen bezel. When the wooden bezel is in place, the Vectrex will be securely positioned. Ignore the rubbish underneath the Vectrex, that's just my temporay store for my tools and bits and pieces.