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I'd been flirting with the idea of building a cab for the last 2 or so years and decided to finally do it last December (2012). I live in Austin, TX and there's a great spot here called Pinballz that is a huge BYOB arcade with hundreds of cabinets to play. I reached out to them hoping that I could get an old, spare machine for cheap that I could build on top of and refinish for my purposes. I ended up getting lucky timing-wise because they were in the middle of a huge warehouse cleanup right around the time that I reached out to them.

I managed to get an old, gutted Black Hole wide body cabinet with lock bar, coin box, side rails, play field glass, and legs for $130.00! I liked the idea of rebuilding/retrofitting and old pinball machine vs building my own from scratch for a couple of reasons… 1: I don't have all of the necessary tools handy to build a complete cabinet from scratch. 2: I really liked the idea of bringing new life to an old, retired cabinet left for dead in the warehouse.

Once I had the cabinet, it was of to the internets to find hardware, peripherals, controls and accessories! Here's the breakdown of all of the various parts that were purchased for the final build. One thing to note…there were other parts that were built out of wood; like the back box monitor mounts, and back box bezel that aren't included here, but still accounted for in the build pics:


CONTROLS (All buttons from http://www.ozstick.com.au/ and http://www.pinballlife.com):


  • Motherboard: ASUS P8Z77-V LX Intel 7 Series Motherboard
  • Processor: Intel Core i5-2500K BX80623I52500 Unlocked Processor - Quad Core, 6MB L3 Cache, 1MB L2 Cache, 3.30 GHz (3.70 GHz Max Turbo)
  • Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 650 01G-P4-2650-KR Video Card - 1GB GDDR5, PCI-Express 3.0(x16), 1x Dual-link DVI-I, 1x Dual-link DVI-D, 1x Mini-HDMI, DirectX 11, Dual-Slot
  • Hard Drive: Seagate ST1000DM003 Barracuda 1TB Hard Drive - 7200RPM, 64MB, SATA 6Gb/s
  • Power Supply: Ultra LSP750 750-Watt Power Supply - ATX, SATA-Ready, SLI-Ready, 135mm Fan, Sleeved Cables, Matte Finish
  • Ram: Kingston HyperX Red KHX16C10B1R/8 8GB Memory Module - 1600MHz, 10-10-10, DDR3, CL10, 1.5V, Unbuffered
  • Fans: 4 - Corsair AF 140 Case Fans


  • Playfield Screen: Insignia™ - 46" Class - LED - 1080p - 60Hz - HDTV
  • Backbox Screen: Acer V243HAJbd 24-Inch LCD Monitor
  • DMD Screen: Hanns G HL161ABB 16 Widescreen LED Monitor
  • Playfield Screen Mount (this makes it very easy to move the main play field out of the way for maintenance): Sanus Full-Motion Wall Mount for 26-47" TVs - Black (AMF112-B1)
  • Speakers: Logitech LS21 2.1 Stereo Speaker System
  • Wireless Network Adapter: NetGear WNDA4100 N900 Wireless Dual Band USB Adapter
  • Wireless Keyboard & Mouse: Microsoft 2LF-00001 Wireless DeskTop 800 Keyboard and Mouse Combo - 2.4 GHz Wireless, 15 Feet Range, USB 2.0 Receiver, Optical, 1000dpi, Black
  • Drink holders: PinGulp Collapsible Beverage Caddies (one left and one right) - http://www.pinballlife.com/

I think that about wraps up the inventory list so, without further a due, here's my build!

One last note…I've put descriptions on each of the images but am happy to elaborate on anything if you'd like ;)

Original purchased cabinet


Backbox with front door removed


Base mount for the backbox screens


Checking that the screens fit...


Aligning the mount with the backglass door frame


Cutting the backglass bezel


Checking that the plexiglass and bezel fit into the door properly


Checking that the plexiglass and bezel fit into the door properly


Testing the hinge mount on the backbox for the monitors


Painted and textured the backglass bezel


Final backglass monitor mount


Refinished and assembled backglass door


Refinished and assembled backglass


Front view of computer drawer


Front view of extended computer drawer


Top view of computer drawer


Some gum on the bottom of the cabinet...likely from the 80's :)


Cutting the fan holes out on the back of the cabinet


Sanding down the outer surface of the cabinet


Cabinet with fan holes and black base coat


Starting to lay out the computer on the drawer


Beginning the OS install...


Install complete, computer ready!


Attached the backbox, some of the buttons, and the playfield TV mount


Back fans with covers (2 additional fans on the bottom of the cabinet)


Mot-ion plunger and launch ball button mounted.

I had to mount the plunger a bit lower to account for the playfield TV.


Top view of Mot-ion plunger


Assembling the computer power button

I mounted this and volume controls to the bottom of the cabinet.


Computer drawer is in!


Another shot of the computer drawer (pre wire cleanup)


Testing the monitor configuration, everything is starting to come together!


Taking Hyperpin for a spin!


Added a DMD-style background to the DMD screen and continuing to add tables


Legs and casters attached...I'm getting so close!


Main button labeling in


Planning for the playfield bezel


Measuring up and planning for the bezel cuts


Cutting the playfield bezel...very slowly


Unassembled coin door button

I ended up mounting the coin button on the coinbox door. I would have loved to hook up the original coin slots but they weren't spring loaded. This turned out to be the next best option.


Making sure everything fits together properly with playfield glass and lockbar on


Taking a break from the build and playing a bit.

The casters were a great addition in my opinion. I can roll the cabinet into any room without any problems!


Graphics are in! Applied them to the front of the cabinet and re-mounted all of the buttons and coin box


Side graphics applied


Final cabinet base with legs and cup holders attached


Completed cabinet with backbox graphics and side rails

I also replaced the original plexiglass cover in the backglass with a non-glare one and added in the backglass border lights.


Front view of completed cabinet


Front-top view of completed cabinet


Side view of completed cabinet art


Side view of completed backbox art


Completed cabinet with artwork corner guards applied


Detail view of backbox art


Detail view of cabinet art


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Dude, f-in awesome.

The 1st thought that popped into my head, reading the thread title is that you created a Mattedsmith themed cab :D But I guess is a reference to your own name, would be a bit silly otherwise anyway, lol.

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fantastic work :beerglass:

computer tray sliding out of the front coin door is a nice touch, so you don't have to cut the back of the original cab.

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Really nice job, nice artwork and the entire cab is finished very tastefully.

For the rectangle buttons on the front panel, did you consider notching out the panel and removing the spacers from the buttons so they could be flush mounted? It's a bit of messing around but a nice effect having such a low profile.

With the PC, how did you go getting everything to behave in Win8?

Oh, and thanks for dropping my name as a supplier, too!

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Really nice job, nice artwork and the entire cab is finished very tastefully.

For the rectangle buttons on the front panel, did you consider notching out the panel and removing the spacers from the buttons so they could be flush mounted? It's a bit of messing around but a nice effect having such a low profile.

With the PC, how did you go getting everything to behave in Win8?

Oh, and thanks for dropping my name as a supplier, too!

No prob! One of the more time consuming parts of the build was actually sourcing the parts. I wanted to be sure to catalog all of my purchases throughout so that I could put it in this post. You guys made it really easy to get all of the buttons and wiring kits I needed for the build so thank you!

I initially wanted to remove the spacers on the buttons but opted not to because I didn't have the correct tools to do the job at the time. I ended up getting the right ones a little later but it was an afterthought at that point. I might go back in and adjust them but it may prove to be a bit difficult now that all of the graphics have been applied. In the end, it gives me something else to tinker with and that's the fun part ;)

As far as windows 8 goes, I haven't had any problems. It took a while to get used to the interface but overall I really don't have any complaints. I used the win7 setup guide on the forums and didn't really run into any problems. There were actually a couple of workarounds in the guide that I didn't have to do in Win8. I figured that going with the latest and greatest OS may pose a bit of problems at the beginning but, moving forward, would make the most sense as we look to new versions of Hyperpin and it's companion programs.


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Your graphics turned out really nice, but I must admit that I was partial to the patina of that original "Black Hole". Especially with the new dB2S version, your cab would have looked awesome with its signature game.

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