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Legtod2 build log


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Buttons note

I stole buttons from my standup arcade from player two. This is a temporary measure until I decide what buttons I want.

So far I have a left and right flipper button

A coin button, start player 1 button, launch ball button, flyer button, information button.

7 buttons.

Since I have an iPac I can used shifted values so when I press the start player 1 and flyer button I get the escape key or exit button.

I want to replace these some/most of these buttons with square illuminated ones. Inside the square buttons I'll add launch, start, flyer, information, etc.

What I'm not sure if iPac provides power to button lamps or I need separate wire to them.

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Artwork note

I have decided to call this machine the black hole. Back in the early eighties I played haughted house, black hole, mystic, rolling stones.

This machine has a base color of light blue. I don't want complex art. The black hole artwork is almost a stenciled look of simplicity and ease.

The name black hole also reflects the fact this machine will eat a lot of my time and others, plus eat money. Yup... The name fits, it not a pretty machine but ...

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Service buttons

I connected wires to the mother board and a momentary switch so I can power on and off the pc from the coin door area.

Reserving two extra momentary switches in coin door area for vol control and what ever other functions I want to program them for.

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Day one use by kids

My 9 and 14 year old boys used the pinball machine for first time today.

Eldest immediately beat my high scores (so I sent him to his room)


Youngest had fun lots of smiles and enjoyment.

Still lots of work to do on it

It looks naked without coin door and artwork

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Here is the latest image of the machine...

Had to usher the kids away from the machine to take this picture.

No coin door yet guess I need to be patient for courier service ;)

All fans connected to PC power supply, attached wire to mother board for power switch.

I painted the grill section but I may remove it and change the look on feel of grill area.

Going to add artwork arround back glass to the theme of black hole or just a colosh of images.

Used flat black cardboard paper arround playfield screen rather than painting playfield glass. Plan to upgrade playfield from 26" to 37 or 40 down the road.

The button were stolen from my stand up arcade until I decide what buttons I want to order.

Was thinking of illuminated buttons like the mame systems that would switch on and off when in attract mode (don't think this is avail for hyperpin).

Going to create stensils for the side art of Black hole (nuthing to original here just factory look).

Still have to order my nudging stuff

Kids love the machine and are racking up some high scores.


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Today I went thru my 133 game tables and checked for play table previews, wheel logos, animated back glasses present.

Also check for dmd centered and not rotated left.

All tables launch from hyper pin and no naggings screens.

Realized I need a wireless keyboard and mouse plus wireless network connect for updates or just use a USB key in and transfer

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Airflow note:

Ran the machine for five hours tonight. I believe the machine is running cool but just to be sure I might install speed fan.org software and monitor CPU and gpu temperatures.

Right now the airflow comes in by two fans in the back of the cabinet. Air can escape the top vent hole into the back box. The back box has a single fan which exhausts the air.

When I am playing the game I can feel air escaping around the front play field glass area. I do not have any other air vents in the cab other than the three fan holes.

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The Backglass has two j-channels one on top and one on the bottom with a white sandwich board cut out to fit monitor on hold the artwork that will fit between the glass and sandwich board. This will allow me to switch artwork on the back glass till I'm satisfied with something I like. On the top of the back box is a button that swing up to allow the glass to slide up and out of the box.

I am contemplating switching the 26" with a 37 or 40 plasma tv. The viewing angles are much better on a plasma then this LCD. For example when standing on the left side of the table the screen is hard to see from the middle of the left side of the table.

Painting is going to be a challenge. I don't want the artwork to bleed or drip around the stencil. Creating the stencils will take time.

Not going to paint until I get my coin door installed, hopefully courier will be delivering it soon.

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Backup to external usb:

For my official USB backup I have decided to create three folders.

Hyperpin - contains my c:\hyperpin folder size is 20gb

Visual pinball - contains c:\program files\visual pinball folder size is 6gb

Misc - install executables for hyper pin, hyper launch, visualual pinball size less than 200 mb

My backup contains the essential directories and setup and install programs for for hyper pin and visual pinball. It represents 138 visual pinball tables, animated back glasses, play fields, wheel logos, etc

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you could back up registry records also, or you could make complete ghost image of your system

don't go for plasma tv, plasma tvs are hot and don't like horizontal position and nudging, better go with some led

as for airflow - you have only two holes under the playfield and they throw air out? then probably the air is going in under the lockdown bar. You could make two holes on the bottom for air intake, and one for subwoofer

i liked black hole pinball also, though it was ball eater and money drainer :)

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Electrical notes:

Today I did the electrical service entrance into the pinball machine.

Took a blue extension cord and cut the three prong receiver end off.

Bought a electrical box for electrical plug in, some lamp wire, a toggle switch and some mars.

The blue electrical wire comes into the pinbal box ground goes to ground on electrical outlet white to one side of outlet and other side to external on off switch and back to the other side of electrical outlet.

So my service electrical outlet has an external on off switch located on the back of the machine.

Next my surge protector/relay switch plugs into the service outlet. It has a master outlet which goes to the pc. When the pc is powered on or off the play field, Backglass, speakers are powered on. When the pc is shutdown the rest are powered off.

There are two on/off switches, one located at the back of the machine and a second located in the front of the machine which logically switches pc, monitors and speakers on.

In the event that something goes wrong electrically I can power off the whole kit and caboodle externally with one switch ( or simply pull the plug ).

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Todays update.

The coin door arrived today ( dancing my happy dance ).

Today I ordered my USB accellerometer and led USB device and square illuminated buttons.

Ordered buttons from virtual pin and rest from ultramarc

I cut the coin door hole into the cabinet and installed the coin door. Looks good (pictures coming).

At this point in time I can say all the external fabrication is done and I can disassemble everything and do the painting and artwork of the cabinet (yuck I hate this part).

While the paint dries and cures I can work on the tilt, nudge, and service buttons that are located on the coin door.

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If you used one of these hitting on a metal plate like a real knocker I bet it would be plenty loud at 12 volts. These things are loud. You would still need LedWiz.





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  • 2 weeks later...

Haven't had much to report so a couple of updates.

My illuminated buttons arrived and now installed in machine.

I really like the leaf spings for flipper control rather than micro switches.

next have to connect my pacled64 and run wires to the buttons and program the device. Gonna use ledblinky to begin with.

Battling right now with getting nudging to work.

Updated pictures to follow.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It has been a while since my last post.

The nudging set up is still not working.

My u-hid-g seems to be acting erratically. Cant seem to calibrate it correctly.

Have requested a replacement and will have another go.

I need to order some led bulbs to replace my lamps in my illuminated buttons.

Need to figure out how to properly set up ledblinky.

Still have to do the stensil artwork on cab.

The machine is working well and the kids and i use it daily.

I regret using a 26" screen for play field but i had a limited budget (that i exceeded), lucky for me i can still fit a 37 or 40 screen when i can afford it.

My total cost is approx 1400.00 to build this unit from scratch. I expect to spend another 500.00 on a bigger playfield tv down the road.

Its been a fun project and its still not completed for right now the kids and i are enjoying it.

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  • 4 months later...

Its been awhile since my last post. Machine has been runningn flawlessly. Has 171 vp tables installed.

I am still searching for hits on the nudging topic, not hearing much on how well people feel their nudging solutions are working out. It would be great to hear feed back on the nudging threads so i can get this area added to my table.

I purchased a 37 lcd tv to replace my 26. When i decased the tv i found my inside cabinet dimensions to be off by a couple of millimeters. Gonna have to plane out some area to allow tv to fit. This screen is so much clearer then 26 and better viewing angles. This tv came from the source name brand is fluid and i picked it up for 319.00

What a difference a bigger screen adds to the table.

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Opps forgot to mention still need to hook up pacled to my illuminated buttons. Looking to see how to add it to vp or hyperpin for some sort of light patterns. Something simple but thats lower priority to nudging

Would like to lower size of backglass preview videos (flv files). I think they are causing my two/three sec delay when previewing different tables in hyperpin. Each vid is nearly 100meg.

Pinball project cost now at 2,000.00

Still need knockers, nudging stuff and may change backglass screen to something larger.

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