Well I managed to get through a good deal of painting today. Of course it did take a 45 minute shower to scrub all the paint overspray off of myself.

I’ve got to say it was really nice using the Krylon spray paints / primers. With a dry to recoat time of just a few minutes it sure speeds up the process of multiple coats.

First I masked off the outside of the lower cab and hit the inside with 2 coats of primer and then three coats of satin black. I am really pleased with how it turned out. Then I masked off the inside and sprayed the outside with 2 coats of primer and 2 coats of clear acrylic wherever the vinyl will be applied. The back of the lower cab was primed twice and then painted matte black.

The backbox was primed twice / interior painted matte / front speaker-DMD panel in satin and the sides were primed and cleared just like the lower cabinet.

Now I have just a few small pieces left to go and the painting will be completed. Then I need to wait a few days before applying the vinyl and starting to install components. It’s starting to get more and more exciting!

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Well today things progressed pretty slowly – spent about 4-5 hours filling / sanding and prepping for paint.

I Made a temporary spray booth up in my garage with some plastic drop sheeting. My wife came home and looked at me like I was nuts – said the setup looked a little like an episode of Dexter……

Flipped the cabinet on it’s side and gave the bottom a good coat of flat black to seal it.

Then went out and made a few more paint finishing supply purchases
– Primer
– Flat black for the interior / bottom
– Satin black for the exposed black areas
– Clear acrylic to coat the areas getting the vinyl

And also the usual misc paint supplies – tack cloths, masking tape, more sanding supplies, etc. and a new respirator so I don’t pass out in the garage!

Tomorrow I plan to start priming!!!

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An update for today….

I Picked up my glass and test fit everything! Added the trim to the backglass and installed both the backbox and DMD monitors. The DMD monitor slides up from below. I made a little wooden stop for it (attached to the LCD mount holes) to keep it in place – works great. The backglass monitor is held in place against the glass by a few metal brackets. I plan on adding a bezel between the glass and the backbox monitor.

I also added the rails to hold up the playfield monitor. I gave everything a test fit before taking it all apart. Did some sanding and then some screw hole filling and left it for the night to dry.

It’s finally really starting to look like something!

Also received an order of buttons today as I didn’t care for the other options I tried. Went with a red yellow orange color scheme to compliment the artwork colors.

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Update for today.

The backbox is now assembled. I installed a piano hinge along the bottom of the rear panel to allow access to the bb. Also installed a drawer lock to keep it closed.

Then the legs went on the cabinet. Had to do a little "trimming" on one of the leg braces as it overlapped my button placement. The rear of the cab sits about 2.25 inches higher than the front to emulate a real cab.
Once the legs were installed I test fit the bb on the lower cab and it fits…. just like it is supposed to… There is a couple of pics showing the operation of the bb door and 1 pic showing the inside of the bb and the 2 bolts holding it to the lower cab.

And finally got around to trimming the siderails about 3 inches or so as my cabinet is about 3.5 inches shorter than a standard Stern cab. Also test fit the lock down bar and retention mechanism and all seems to fit properly. I then measured for the glass and will take the order in to a glass shop tomorrow.

When I was working today things didn’t seem to move forward very much but now that I look back I actually got a few things accomplished!

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Cabinet assembly started today!

Everything has gone fairly smoothly so far. All joints are "glued and screwed".

I went through my check list of "holes to drill and cut" in all the panels and think I covered my bases. I added a 120mm fan grill to cover the hole where the subwoofer will fire out of the cabinet. I also added 2 hidden button holes underneath the cab on the left side for computer (overall machine) power and computer reset. Added one under the front right edge as a hidden coin button.

I used some 2×2 fir I had to add strength to the base and cab. I’m not exactly sure who was the first to do this but thanks for the idea on that one!

You can see the cutout for the DMD monitor in the pics – It matches up with a similar hole in the bottom of the backbox.

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…and the backbox assembly started today as well.

The 1st pic shows the brackets used to hold the top in place. The glass is sliding in from the top so I needed access to the top of the backbox.
The 2nd and 3rd pics show the mostly assembled backbox waiting for the glue to dry. The backglass monitor will sit on the shelf above the speaker panel and be held up against the glass by a couple of brackets or blocks.

You can see the hole for the DMD monitor on the bottom of the bb.
In the next day or two – hopefully – I should be able to get the legs attached and attach the bb to the lower cabinet. There just seems to be more and more things making the to-do list.

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Getting There!

I’m working on getting most holes drilled / cut / milled out before I assemble the cabinet. It is much easier to work with a flat piece of material than an assembled project. Little things like using a drill press to drill button holes just work a lot better.

I test fitted the siderails and lockdown bar – took a little rounding of the MDF on the corners but it seemed to go together well. I’ll have to trim the ends of the siderails a little as my cab is slightly shorter (at 48") than a standard Stern unit. That will wait until later in the assembly process when I’m more sure of their exact positioning. The coin door is ready to go as well.

The front panel is now ready to go. The plunger hole took a little while as Nanotech doesn’t supply any kind of template or instructions. Worked out well though. I am still trying to finalize my button types and colors. I drilled a 1 1/8" lip with a through hole size of 1". The Ultimarc Ultralux buttons have a small 1 1/8" lip so they will fit snugly in a standard Happs arcade size hole. The Happ illuminated pushbuttons are 1" in diameter so I can fit either in the button holes. I could still also switch the round buttons on the left to small square Happ illuminated units. The larger rectangular units like BBB used won’t really fit (they would hit the leg) Decisions, decisions……..

I’ve got red GroovyGameGear lighted buttons with Micro-Leaf switches for the flipper buttons. All the other button options are lit as well.
My initial button scheme was (left side, top to bottom):

start – red
extra ball – yellow

exit – red
genre – blue
instructions – blue
flyer – blue

But I think that is too many colors – don’t want it to look like a Christmas tree – I’m thinking of going with:

start – red
extra ball – blue

exit – red
genre – blue
instructions – blue
flyer – blue

I posted pictures of both of those options (option 2 missing the last blue button as I would have to order another one) – let me know what you guys think – or any other great color schemes you may come up with would be appreciated. I’m not adverse to picking up a whole new set of button colors and/or shapes if they work better…..
I had planned on using a larger "ball launch" button – I actually picked up a large round Happ launch ball button but it is just too tight with this standard size cabinet. The Stern legs are 30.5" and come quite far up the cabinet.The large button would basically be touching the plastic cabinet protectors for the legs. As such I will have to go with a smaller ball launch button. I test fitted a red small round Happ button – seemed to work alright.

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The cabinet artwork arrived today for both my pinball and arcade cabinets! I think they look absolutely GREAT! Mamemarquees did an awesome job with the printing. Now to get on with cabinet construction…..

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