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Old 30th Mar 2012, 21:36   #1
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Project: 'Troy's Pinball' - Arcade Sequel Build

It has been nearly a year and a half since I finished my last project "Troy's Arcade" and it's time for a sequel. I had initially planned on building another MAME with a trackball, spinner, 4-way stick and light guns, but then I saw an article at metku.net covering a pinball build and immediately all other plans were abandoned.

Before I ever plunked a quarter into any video game as a kid I had already played a fair amount of pinball, but it wasn't until I found a Williams Whirlwind machine in the early 90's that I truly knew how much I loved playing. Based off a Williams wide body machine my Google Sketchup design is now final and all the hardware/parts needed for the build are here.







Sceptre 40" Class LCD 1080p 60Hz HDTV, X405BV-FHD, 1920 X 1080 @60hz, 16:9 Wide Screen, 8 ms, 400 (W) x 200 (H), Screen size is 35" wide x 20" high (40" diagonal)



Acer S230HL Bmii 23" Class Widescreen LED Backlit Monitor - 1920 x 1080, 16:9, 100000000:1 Dynamic, 1000:1 Native, 60Hz, 5ms, HDMI, VGA



AOC e1649Fwu 16" Class Ultra Slim USB Portable LED Backlit Monitor - 1366 x 768, 16:9, 500:1 Native, 60Hz, 16ms, U-Slim



Below is a list of the hardware I will be using for this build followed by a picture of it all...

ZOTAC GF6100-E-E AM3 / AM2+ / AM2 NVIDIA nForce 430 MCP Mini ITX AMD Motherboard
ZOTAC ZT-50608-10L GeForce GT 520 (Fermi) 512MB 64-bit DDR3 PCI Express x1 HDCP Ready Low Profile Ready Video Card
Logitech LS11 Stereo Speakers - 2.0 Channels, 3 Watts RMS, 2" high-excursion metallic drivers
Patriot PT232GS25SSDR Torqx 2 32GB Solid State Drive - 32GB, SATA I/II
Diablotek PHD Series PHD380M 380W Micro ATX Power Supply
Crucial Ballistix 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model BL2KIT12864AA804
AMD Athlon 64X2 (ADO4000IAA5DD) CPU 2.1GHZ
EVERCOOL EC-NK804A-925EP 92mm Ever Lubricate CPU Cooler for AM2 and AM3 Series



Below is a Belkin 6-outlet surge protector, four pushbuttons and six lighted pushbuttons, two 120mm fans (one speed controlled), two types of red LED lighting, an HDMI and a DVI to HDMI cable, a USB internal to external cable and a 6" extension cord/power cable.



This next part took a total of 51 days from the day I ordered it to receive it, so if you plan on building your own pinball machine make sure to order the Mot-Ion Adapter & Digital Plunger Kit at least two months before you know you want it.



Below is what will make up most of the enclosure, it consists of one Acrylic Plexiglass Sheet Clear 3/8" x 23.7/8" x 15.7/8" and one 3/8"x 48" x 25.7/8" sheet, two sheets of OPTIX acrylic 3/16" x 18" x 24", three 8" x 1 1/2" lengths of corner Alum-Angle, four black 28" Williams pinball table legs and the mounting brackets, bolts and four leg levelers that go with them.



I cut one of the 8 foot lengths of Alum-Angle in half and clamped it onto the 48"x26" sheet of 3/8" thick acrylic to use as a guide for the jigsaw.



It is difficult to get an exactly straight even cut, so the side panels will be double sided taped together in preparation for sanding. The two four foot sections of Alum-Angle will be taped onto the edges as guides to keep my sanding even and let me know when to stop.



Forever later and it's sanded pretty even, below shows the taped and clamped Alum-Angle / Acrylic and Mouse sander.



I cut both sides of the of the marquee and sanded them like I did to the side panels. It still needs a little work, but the following picture shows just how massive this thing is.



Here is the back of the 40" LCD, it will have to be removed to allow for accurate measurement of the LCD screen.



Screws removed and back cover off - the speakers, IR receiver and TV side controls will all be removed and then relocated inside the body of the pinball table. While I was looking at the back of the screen I noticed that my Sceptre LCD contains parts stamped Samsung.



Ok, in this next picture all the stuff I mentioned removing above has been, plus you can see where I cut away any steel bits that were in the way. I also cut two lengths of Alum-angle that will run up the edges and serve as the mounting rails for the screen.



There is a rubber grommet lined hole like this in each corner of the screen, all four are ready made to be the points at which the side rails attach to the screen.



I bought four nylon spacers and they fit snug against the rubber grommets inside the holes, the bolt, washer, lock washer, nut combo will hold the rails down.



I cut a corner section out of the middle of one of the side rails to allow a ribbon cable to pass through. The side rails were mounted and then marked for the placement of three Alum-Angle brace rails, that were then then measured, cut and installed. Below shows the modified 40" LCD screen all finished up and ready to mount.



Stay Tuned... More To Come.
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Old 13th Apr 2012, 01:51   #2
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Below shows the test fit of parts that will make up the back glass and a cat who thinks that laying down on top of it all is somehow helpful. If you look closely at the 23" Acer monitor you can see a length of Alum-Angle that was initially going to be a support brace on the back of the 40" LCD TV, it is the same exact width as the 23" monitor... which means that everything should fit in nice and tight.



Here is a better look at my helper, his name is Boozie... he isn't super bright but he is super friendly, so I cut him slack whenever his wacky cat antics slow me down.



I cut some beefy 2" Alum-angle with my chop saw and used my disk/belt sander to smooth it up.



Below shows what $100 of Alum-angle and another $100 in acrylic looks like cut up.



Here is the whole thing laid out on my bed, including the legs and a bottom panel made of plywood that was cut to size and painted black.



I drilled evenly spaced holes into the Alum-angle and attached all four lengths to the bottom panel using wood screws.



Here is a shot of the inside of the base, the rectangular hole in the plywood orients to the front and will provide quick access to the backs of the buttons, the TV and speaker controls, fan control, etc.



I got fed up with working off of my bed and dining room table, since I have more projects going on than we ever do guests staying over it really was a no brainer - goodbye guest bedroom, hello new workshop. Below is the view from the front door looking in...



Directly to the left of the last picture...



Left again, the door in the corner is a closet...



Take one last left and we have the entry door and an exterior door... and that concludes the tour of my workshop. Now that I have a dedicated work space where I am not constantly getting stuff out and then having to put it away each night should help speed everything up

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Old 13th Apr 2012, 02:08   #3
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I took a look at the pinball machine on that link, that's gotta be the coolest thing ever, I can't see your pics but really like the idea
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Old 26th Apr 2012, 03:46   #4
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I decided to make a couple of hardware changes, first up I am ditching the 2GB of Crucial Ballistix memory in favor of 4GB of Kingston Hyper-X, because more is better and they are lower latency. Secondly, the Logitech speakers work great in my MAME machine, but they are right in your face. At 1.5w per speaker I can't imagine they'd sound as good four feet away, another negative is the volume control knob would have stuck out from the back glass. My new Creative Inspire T3130 speakers are 25w total with 5w each satellite and 15w for the subwoofer are a better fit for this project and the volume controls can now be easily hidden.



I finished drilling mount holes in the Alum-angle and then double side taped each piece onto the acrylic side panels to use as drilling templates. I have a set of drill bits that are specifically for plastic and acrylic and mention it only because they are crucial to achieving professional results when working on stuff like this... besides, it doesn't make sense to risk cracking a hundred dollars worth of 3/8" acrylic over a nine dollar specialty drill bit.



Here the side panels have been drilled and are mounted to the base for a test fit and everything so far fits good.



Below is the inner leg brace, since it fits tight already I only need to drill out the center holes on the side edges of the brace to permanently attach them.



The back side panel is cut from pressboard and the first piece of the two part front panel is cut from a sheet of .220 Optix acrylic, below shows both attached for a test fit. I also bought a piece of black molding from a Williams wide body pinball machine that secures the back edge of the table glass, I cut it to size and it is sitting in place on the top edge below.



I cut the second piece of 3/16 acrylic sheet for the front panel, below shows a top down view.



The reason the front panel had to be two sheets thick will become apparent when I mount the speakers from the TV and the five recessed LED buttons. The two white pieces of paper show where I Intend to mount the TV speakers.



I had to thicken up the back material so that the pinball table legs will seat correctly, for this I used the same 3/16" acrylic as the front panels. Sadly, in figuring out that the thickness of the rear material mattered when mounting the legs I destroyed two bolts and a leg mounting plate, I am currently awaiting delivery of replacements.

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Old 5th May 2012, 00:42   #5
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I cut and rivet together a few pieces of Alum-angle as the start of a simple mounting base for the motherboard and video card. The four screws will secure the motherboard to the wood base of the pinball table and the zip tie is there to hold the video card in place.



To prevent the motherboard from ever flexing I cut and bolt down a couple cross braces, I chose to bolt the cross braces on instead of riveting because if the motherboard mounting holes don't line up perfectly the bolts will adjust way easier than resetting rivets.



I installed the processor, CPU fan, video card and memory into the motherboard, I also plugged in a SATA cable, an external USB and I used an old four wire audio cable over the power switch and power LED pin-outs on the motherboard... this thing will be ready to be mount permanently in the cabinet after I install the OS, drivers and software.



Next up is trying to find the best places inside the table for the hardware. I cut and drilled a strip of 1/2" Alum-angle and attached it to the bottom of a speed adjustable 120mm fan, it will sit up front and blow back. Sitting just behind the fan is a Logisys power distribution box, then the motherboard, and behind that is the 6 outlet surge protector and the power supply. The power supply will be ducted to the rear, as will the subwoofer (shown still covered in plastic).

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Old 5th May 2012, 02:33   #6
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jhanlon303 is the Cheesecake. Relix smiles down upon them.jhanlon303 is the Cheesecake. Relix smiles down upon them.jhanlon303 is the Cheesecake. Relix smiles down upon them.jhanlon303 is the Cheesecake. Relix smiles down upon them.jhanlon303 is the Cheesecake. Relix smiles down upon them.jhanlon303 is the Cheesecake. Relix smiles down upon them.jhanlon303 is the Cheesecake. Relix smiles down upon them.jhanlon303 is the Cheesecake. Relix smiles down upon them.jhanlon303 is the Cheesecake. Relix smiles down upon them.jhanlon303 is the Cheesecake. Relix smiles down upon them.jhanlon303 is the Cheesecake. Relix smiles down upon them.
MOM!!!!!!!!!!!!

Troy's back.

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Old 5th May 2012, 07:12   #7
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I love pinball, it gives me a fuzzy feeling and makes me think back fondly on my childhood in the arcades, looking like a good start here, I'm so following this one
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Old 5th May 2012, 23:11   #8
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balder+1!
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Old 6th May 2012, 08:20   #9
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looking fantastic!
here's a swedish build log log if you need inspiration Tordyvel 78 @ sweclockers.com virtual pinball machine

just scroll down to get to the build log =)
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Old 6th May 2012, 12:06   #10
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This sounds simply incredible! Great start!
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Old 6th May 2012, 13:26   #11
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Thanks for the link! Seems like your machine will be rock solid and stable. My machine was mostly played while placed on a table top and it didn't need legs at all. I did install them for a while but I was bit too wobbly for my liking.

Oh, and start configuring the software early as it will take time too. Combining tables with back graphics and all the additional files can be a hassle. Also, not nearly all tables work as they should so reserve plenty of time to work them out. Drove me almost insane and I only ended up fully configuring a dozen of tables.
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Old 6th May 2012, 13:43   #12
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Old 7th May 2012, 03:50   #13
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Thanks everyone for your comments, but especially thanks to japala for being the inspiration for this whole project... I was working on building a tactical shotgun and almost had it finished, but when I saw your pinball table on Metku every thing hit the back burner.


Alum-angle on the bottom of the PSU to mount it and a duct to the rear to provide cool air, I will probably also use some double sided tape on the bottom of the PSU to make sure it stays put as well as rubberize the PSU edge of the duct against vibration.



Off with the legs! Removing the legs from the subwoofer allows it to sit at nearly the same distance away from the pinball table interior side wall as it sat with legs... without interfering with a couple other things I have planned.



Below shows the three pieces of Alum-angle that I cut to secure the subwoofer, they will all be lined with felt to prevent vibration before the sub is final installed.

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Old 7th May 2012, 13:55   #14
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Im so gonna stay and watch this
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Old 9th May 2012, 01:20   #15
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I measured out where a few holes needed to be cut in the back panel and predrilled pilot holes using an 1/4" bit for plastics, then I run the hole saws first forward to cut the pressboard and then in reverse to cut through the acrylic.



Below is the back panel with the holes drilled and the hardware that required those holes installed, everything lines up even better than I expected. The blue-green PSU duct will be vinyl dyed black and a black plug for the power cord was added after realizing that the hole I cut was the exact same diameter as the plug I had.



Next up is a look from the inside with the sub-woofer and PSU installed, since I no longer plan to attach the six outlet surge suppressor to the back panel I will need to figure out another way to secure it... a fair trade for how clean the back looks.

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Old 9th May 2012, 08:10   #16
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Already reserved my seat great job.
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Old 9th May 2012, 21:42   #17
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I'm here with drinks and snacks.
Must, watch!
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Old 16th May 2012, 02:04   #18
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I decided to change the design of the front panel, so the white, green, yellow and red LED pushbuttons are now out in favor of only using the blue LED jumbo and small pushbuttons. Another two small black SPST momentary pushbuttons will be recess mounted below the plunger to act as the pause and exit to main menu buttons.



The build will now be themed totally in blue and black, why? Because I got a really cool idea that I couldn't shake about how to make the pinball machine really stand out visually without resorting to print vinyl graphics. Below shows one hundred dollars worth of blue 12v SMD LED strips in lengths from six to forty eight inches and flavors from chaser to flashing that I ordered from a seller in China, they will all be worked into the project.



I had to test them all to be sure they survived shipping so I screwed ten of them into the Logisys power distribution box. I really like the Logisys unit, it is made for powering video surveillance cameras, but works perfectly for this type of application. Also, I feel that I got more than my moneys worth of SMD LED strips, these bad boys are wicked bright.



If anyone is curious how the active LED strips look in action I made a video of the six inch chaser SMD LED strips and the twenty-four inch flashing SMD LED strips...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=r6u8dAHnwRY

Back to working on the front... below shows the measuring tools, drill bits and hole saws that will be used to fabricate the two ply front panel.



Here are the front panel pieces almost finished, I used the trusty Dremel flex shaft and a length of Alum-angle as a guide for the ripsaw blade to cut out the extra bits from the speaker holes.



The front panel with the speakers, buttons and plunger test fit, I still need to cut some mesh and install it over where the speakers are going to sit.

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Old 16th May 2012, 10:32   #19
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WOOOOOOOW . You're CRAZY . Keep it coming pleaseee
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Old 21st May 2012, 00:16   #20
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Quote:
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WOOOOOOOW . You're CRAZY . Keep it coming pleaseee
Thanks, here you go...

I got the mesh for the speaker holes cut and test fit, when it comes time for the mesh final install I will secure it in place with Weld-on 16.



I took the front, table sides and back glass sides to my little brother to sandblast the back of the acrylic panels where the SMD LEDs will be located.



I designed an old school looking graphic for the project, my brother has a vinyl cutter so while I was there I also had him cut me some decals...



Weeding vinyl sucks, for those who don't know - weeding is the removal of scrap vinyl that will not be part of the final decal and it is a tedious process. I used clear contact paper over the weeded vinyl so that they can be lifted off the paper backing and installed onto the acrylic. Below are three of the decals I will be using as masks for the vinyl dye part of the project.



Below shows placement of one of the vinyl decals, it also shows placement of the four 6" SMD chaser LEDs. The plexi-glass where the LEDs sit has a frosted look after sand blasting and should diffuse the blue glow a little when the LEDs are installed behind it.



I needed something to install the 6" chaser LEDs onto so I copied my measurements onto a piece of aluminum flashing, then cut and rivet it onto the front brace piece of Alum-angle.



The four 6" SMD chaser LEDs all had short bare leads, so I soldered them all together and added longer wires, then I sleeved and heat shrink the whole thing. Now it will only need a single power output from the Logisys power distribution box and even though sleeving was unnecessary because it will likely never be seen it does look nice.

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