Old News (January 2000)


January 31, 2000

I finally posted the schematics for a joystick 8/4 way conversion switch.  I wanted to make sure I tried it out before posting.  I came up with 2 versions that both work great.  I hope you can use them.

Due to the nasty weather on the east coast - I'm still stalled on my restoration projects.  I've also managed to almost cut off the tip of my finger while installing some home theater wiring.  It's bad enough that it might take months to heal.  And I was expecting to paint!

January 27, 2000

I've been doing so much for the past couple of months that I feel like I should at least say that I'm stalled at this point.  The weather has made it difficult to paint my cabinet or work on anything.  I need to finish up the schematic I promised and post it.  I expect to do that tomorrow.

January 22, 2000

Can you believe that I didn't work on anything arcade related over the weekend?  I was staining furniture and running cable for a home theater - the entire weekend!

I'm still working on the joystick 4/8 way switch.  I've got it done for the most part but I'm trying to get the part count down and make it as simple as possible.  I hope to put the schematic up soon.

January 20, 2000

I did nothing in the line of restoring games yesterday.  Instead I spent 5 hours staining some furniture.  Just to have something new to add, I spent some time making a schematic for a joystick 4/8 way switch.  I plan to add this to my MAME cabinet to disallow or allow diagonal movements at the flip of a switch.

January 19, 2000

In case you haven't noticed, this web site was missing quite a few pieces yesterday and this morning.  Somehow it was erased from the service provider.  I've got the entire site back online now.

I hooked up my Space Invaders PCB last night to a different power supply.  I found that I have 4 bad power supplies!  I tried using a PC power supply that puts out 14 amps at +5v.  It did nothing for me.

January 18, 2000

Today at lunch I stopped home to gawk at my cabinet some more.  I got the urge to screw and glue the new monitor shelf in place.  This makes the cabinet easy to move for 1 person.

January 16, 2000

With my new corners in place, I cut a new dado for the t-molding and did some final sanding.  I managed to get the entire cabinet primed - twice! 

January 15, 2000

Today was a bit rough.  It was a beautiful day so I hauled my cabinet out into the yard and did some final sanding on the corners.  I was expecting to prime the entire cabinet.  As I was sanding the corner it broke off!  I replaced the broken pieces with some new putty and let it dry.  It too fell off, as did the other corner!

I decided to fall back on the always reliable method of replacing the wood entirely at the corners.  I used my router cut out the old wood and my table saw to make a new piece.  I've added a page for replacing the corners if you'd like to know more.

January 14, 2000

I finished up the speaker panel by stapling on the black burlap and screwing on the braces and marquee holder.

January 13, 2000

Today I finally got the last few pieces of lucite out of my eye (I think).  I put my head under water in the bath tub and shook my head around.  I won't be cutting plastic without eye protection again!  I've added a lot of photos to my Defender to Mame conversion project.  You might want to check it out.

I filled in the dado's left by the monitor shelf so I should be ready for a final sanding and then priming this weekend.  I can't wait.  I bought a piece of burlap at Wal Mart to cover my speaker panel.  All I could find was white so I dyed it black and washed it.  I should be covering the speaker panel tomorrow.

I also added some photos to the Pachislo token to quarter conversion page.

January 12, 2000

Because I was sort of out of commission with my eye, I worked on something safer.  I mounted some new speakers on the speaker panel for my Mame cabinet, along with an amplifier.

I also added a tutorial on how to modify Pachislo slots to accept quarters.

January 11, 2000

I learned a hard lesson today after forgetting to wear eye protection while cutting some lucite.  Some shards of lucite flew into my eye and earned me a trip to the emergency room.  I did manage to get a front glass and marquee panel cut though.

January 10, 2000

I worked on lowering the monitor shelf again last night.  Tonight I'll finish it up and hopefully be able to do some filling on the dado left by the old shelf.  I added some more photos to the page if you're interested.  I also want to power up my Space Invaders board to see if it works.  I have an alternate power supply that should do the trick.

January 9, 2000

I managed to fit in an hour or so of work on my Defender to MAME conversion cabinet.  I worked on lowering the monitor shelf.

Over the weekend I obtained instructions for converting my Pachislo machines to use quarters.  I'll re-word this and post it soon.  I'll try to include photos and might even go ahead and convert one of my machines.

January 8, 2000

Today I stopped over at a friends house to pick up some solenoids/relays for the arcade bowler.  I was missing one that handles 100's digit scoring.  He was trying hard to sell me something - including 2 pachislo machines ($300 for 2), an Atari Baseball arcade game (I think it went for $66 on e-bay) and an electro-mechanical pinball ($200).  I might take him up on the pinball at a later time.  I must have a pinball eventually!  Otherwise I held onto my cash because Christmas was a killer this year.

In addition to my visit, I worked on patching my Defender cabinet some more.  I was almost ready to prime but got distracted later in the day.  A couple of the patched corners are cracking now.  I wished I would have gone with the traditional fiberglass or bondo material.  Someone suggested rock hard water putty so I thought I'd try it.  Other than the cracking, I've liked the putty so far because the firmness can be controlled.

January 7, 2000

When I got home I went right for Space Invaders.  I figured out the pinouts on the board and checked the input voltages.  The power supply puts out +5 nicely until I plug in the PCB.  When under load, the power drops to +3.  The caps don't seem to hold a charge either.  It looks like I need to order caps, diodes, etc and just re-vamp the entire power supply.

January 6, 2000

I spent the evening researching my Space Invaders game.  The pinouts I found in the user guide don't seem to match the wiring in my cabinet.  The +5,-5 and +12 are in the wrong place.  I also have a +15 which is probably what blew out my cap the other day.  I hope to work more on it this weekend and to work on priming my defender cabinet as well.

January 5, 2000

I started a links page.  If you need a place to get info on repairing arcade games, check it out. 

I worked on Space Invaders yesterday after getting some advice about the broken EEPROM.  The advice was that the break was a grounding wire and that I should be OK without it.  I put the boards back in the machine and took a closer look at everything.  I noticed a blown fuse on the power supply and replaced it.  Powering up caused lots of smoke and a blown capacitor.  The capacitor was obviously part of the audio amp.  It looks like I'll be replacing that and checking out the power supply a little more closely.

I also worked on my arcade bowler and realized that the strike/spare setup units (total of 6) need a lot of oiling and movement to make them work.  Years of rust and sitting around have frozen the mechanics.  I worked on the player 3 unit for about 30 minutes and have it working properly.  I also managed to get the game to cycle between players.  It's still far from finished.

January 4, 2000

I played with my arcade bowler a little to try and figure out how it works.  I'm not sure how the game plays but the pins do go up when the puck flies under them.  I thought there was some sort of button you pushed to make the machine score the throw.  If there is then it doesn't appear to work.  I am missing 1 relay so maybe that's the problem.

I posted some additional photos of the electronic pachinko machine.  I don't have the funds to purchase the transformer right now due to Christmas.  I might have to let the machine sit for a while.

January 3, 2000

I went a little nuts with my digital camera yesterday.  I've posted a lot of new pictures.

I did some final (I hope) filling on my Defender cabinet and fixed one of the leg levelers.  I also modified the Defender pages to shorten their load time and changed the banner for 50megs to a popup.

I added some more info on the broken Space Invaders PCB.

January 1, 2000

It's the first day of the year and none of my arcade machines blew up!  I'll also have to find something to do with all this ammunition!

If took more pictures of my new pachinko machine but left them at home.  I figured out that I need a 24vac transformer rated at 3a and 100va.  I looked at Radio Shack but they didn't have anything that would handle the amperage.  I found one at Mouser Electronics for $25 and I'll be ordering that soon.  The machine is made by Sansei and the theme is written in Japanese.  Hopefully when I power it up I can find a name for the theme.