Friday, May 17, 2019

Coming up on 10 Years!

I can't believe I've had this cabinet for a decade already.  I still play it!  It works just as good as it did 10 years ago although I seem to be getting worse at Donkey Kong!  It now sits in its "final" resting place in the basement and is fun to play when friends come over.

I've also gotten into the habit of using quarters, which to me makes it much more fun than just pressing the coin button for credits.

Next up for me is a custom cabinet for my son that I've been meaning to build...

Monday, October 5, 2009

Before & After

Can you believe how far this thing has come?

Me neither!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Cost

I like to keep a running tally of costs associated with these projects (so my wife doesn't have a heart attack hahaha).

  • Cabinet and coin door: $36 (I still can't believe it)
  • Zinsser BIN primer (1 gallon): $20 from Home Depot
  • Blue paint (1 gallon): $45 from Sherwin Williams (way expensive, but worth it)
  • Black paint (1 quart - Rustoleum semi-gloss): $8 from Home Depot
  • Bondo: $12 from Home Depot
  • Rubber feet: $2 from Home Depot
Control Panel:
  • Control panel overlay: $30 from eBay
  • Control panel instruction card underlay: $5 from Arcade Shop
  • Button set for Nintendo Classic control panels: $15 from
  • Nintendo Control Panel bolt set (8 bolts/nuts): $10 from
  • 3 Nintendo button holders (with microswitches): $28 from
  • Nintendo CP Strike Set: $5 from
  • Joystick (Sanwa JLF) and harness: $35 from
  • 1/16" ABS plastic (24" x 24"): $17 from eBay
  • 1/2" MDF panel: $0 (on hand)
  • Marquee: $40 from Arcade Shop
  • Side Art: $65 from QuarterArcade
  • Bezel: $45 from Arcade
  • Bezel instruction card decal: $5 from Arcade Shop
  • Nintendo coin door decals: $6 from ThisOldGame
Misc. Parts:
  • Light: $12 from Home Deopt
  • Marquee/bezel retainers: $17 from
  • 9/16" t-molding: $10 from Arcade Shop
  • 19" Tri-Res CGA/EGA/VGA monitor: $239+$28 S/H from Arcade Shop
  • Computer/PCB
  • Powdercoating coin door: $75 from local shop
  • Asahi Seiko Coin Mechs (2): $76 factory direct
It started off cheap but like every one of these projects the costs add up over time. All things considered it was worth it to me to have a factory-fresh Donkey Kong cabinet in my house. I've wanted one ever since I was a kid...

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Nintendo Serial Plate

When Nintendo originally manufactured their arcade cabinets, each one was given a unique model number stamped onto a serial plate which was screwed to the back of the cabinet right above the removable panel. Unfortunately, my cabinet did not come with one but leapinlew over at BYOAC told me he had an extra and he was kind enough to send it to me for FREE! Thanks buddy! Check it out:

For those that may be wondering, the serial plate measures 4" x 1-7/8" and is held in place by 4 small screws. Anyway, it's not a huge deal but this does add to the authenticity of the cabinet (at least to me) even though sharp eyes will notice that this particular serial plate came off of an original Popeye machine (based on the model number). It also appears to be a blank since there is no actual serial number listed. Maybe I'll stamp it with a #000001!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

A Video For Your Viewing Pleasure

Here she is in action!

It's Alive!!

Now the moment I've been waiting for - powering it on for the first time (and praying everything works!).

It did!

Here are some shots with the lights off - it is impossible to get a good picture but you get the idea. The marquee really pops and everything looks better than I imagined it.

I am VERY happy with the results. I still have a few very minor things left to do (software tweaking mostly and I also have to figure out a back door even though you can't see it) but this project is about 99% finished.

I'll post a video of it working when I get a chance and other miscellaneous stuff when it pops into my head.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Brains: Part 2

Next up was installing the computer - pretty easy stuff. I just placed it on a shelf that spans the two plywood supports as shown below.

Next, I screwed the motherboard to the shelf and then plugged everything in (hard drive, monitor, USB connections for the iPac, etc.). I don't have any pictures of this but it is pretty self-explanatory if you've made it this far.