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Pinball999

Life Taker - 46/32/DMD Widebody

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EDITED with new HW info.

Current Status:

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So, finally… after years lurking on the site, it’s time for me to start my build.

Hi there, this is the beginning of the Life Taker thread.

Why Life Taker? Well, the cab will probably not receive any decals, or fancy theme. It will get a nice black satin paint and the name “Blackie” was already taken. So I thought that Life Taker is perfectly appropriate if I keep in mind the many hours (days?) spent reading your amazing threads, and also the many days (years?) that I’ll spend playing on it.

For the specs:

PC:

-W7 64

-Proc. Intel i5 @3.3Ghz Overcloacked

-Mother board Asus P8P67

-8G Ram

-Video card GeForce GTX 560 Ti Overcloacked

-Soundblaster X-fi

-PSU 650W

-Trust Tytan 2.1 60W

-SSD 60G

-SSD 120G (needed more space for TPA, Zen Pinball and Pro Pinball)

-Additional amps for Bass Shaker and inner speaker (for Visual Pinball only at the moment)

Screens

Samsung ES5700 46” for playfield

LG 32” for backglass

Vishay DMD

Parts:

Gottlieb Widebody lockdown bar

Williams/Bally chromed legs

Vintage coin door (from an old Bally Pat Hand)

Williams/Bally thin side rails

Williiams hinges

Others:

2 Bass shakers (Bass Pump III)

I-Pac

Led-Wiz for the 8 force feedback contactors (will probably get ten for DOF)

No Cree, wiper motor at the moment

PinDMD2

Nanotech Mot-ion for the nudge (with 3 mercury switches for softs not compatible)

I’m not really worried about the construction part. I have the chance to love working with wood, and could practice a bit on a mame cab last year. I’m sure it will be a lot of fun!

As for the PC part, it’s not a competition beast, but it had been tested on the cab and could run all tables I ‘ve tried without a problem.

For the story, I have to admit that I was refraining myself to start the build.

My first idea was to build a Taitorama cab (thanks a lot to the Koenigs Bros. for the inspiration: http://www.koenigs.dk/mame/eng/index.htm) and play the desktop tables on it.

I then discovered the Hyperpin forums by chance and the two first tables I saw were the FireBall (http://anyruginthehouse.com/blog/?p=450) and the Doctor Who from Mameman… What a shock it was!

Since then, I spent hours thinking about the Pros and Cons (size, cost, fun, etc). I finally went for the cab solution and really thought that it would be enough to give me my daily pinball fix.

What a fool I was… Look at where I’m now! I should have known that I could not resist..

Playing on the cab was a lot of fun, but a 28” monitor can’t compete against a 46” playfield… and it’s for sure missing the nudge and force feedback feeling.

So .. thanks a lot to the table authors for making this possible (desktop and FS), and to the cab builders for the inspiration (even if my wife hates all of you in secret).

Edited by Pinball999

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Mine (other than artwork) was just completed. The Nanotech nudge system is unworkable (imo). I rigged 3 independent plumbobs for 3 way nudge. If starting from scratch, I would likely go the sidewinder method.

Good luck on your project.

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Mine (other than artwork) was just completed. The Nanotech nudge system is unworkable (imo). I rigged 3 independent plumbobs for 3 way nudge. If starting from scratch, I would likely go the sidewinder method.

Good luck on your project.

Don't the nanotech and sidewinder use the exact same chip? If so then it should be the same. I for one couldnt get the sidewinder to nudge right and went with a ps3 controller hack. It worked out. I have now gotten a nanotech (for the plunger) and will give the nudge config a try again. My friend has their nanotech nudging pretty realistically.

On that topic, in videos it seems most people set their nudge way too high. It is like they have not ever played on a real pinball machine before. To get the amount of nudge that I have seen in various nudge demo videos i would certainly tilt, even on my machines that I have the tilt bob set rather generously on.

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Thanks a lot guys. I will go to the woodshop this saturday and start quite soon. Pics are on the way.

As for the Nanotech. I'll give it another chance but was pretty disappointed last time I've used it, mainly because of the position cursor that can't stay in place in the setting screen.

If I'm still not happy with it or the mercury switches, I'll probably go for the plumbobs (found a site selling some mini versions)

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post-28820-142870582545_thumb.jpg

OK. Time to start. Used the plans from Freezy and Mameman to make sure that all my mesurements are fine before going to the wood shop yesterday.

Spent some time this afternoon on it, and here is where I'm standing at the moment. So far so good, the lockdown bar fits perfectly!

post-28820-142870582549_thumb.jpg

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Talking about the Lockdown bar.. It's a Gottlieb widebody that I found for a very decent price on e-bay.

It did not come in great condition, but I polished it a bit and I can now see myself on it.

For the pros:

It allows for 65,5cm between the two sides of the cab. With that much place, we can insert a Samsung 46" without decasing it and:

-no worry about painting or hiding the screen frame.

-keep the screen control buttons (on the back of it). They can be accessed via the coin door.

For the cons:

It seems to be a bit thinner than the widebody bars from other brands, and as a result, it doesn't completely cover the siderails.

I'll just have to shorten them a bit. Good thing that I found this out in advance and cut my wood accordingly.

post-28820-142870582551_thumb.jpg

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How to turn a Samsung Screen into a No Name.

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Et voilà! Removing this part will allow me to insert the screen in the routed slots without decasing the whole thing.

Edited by Pinball999

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Nice work! Reminds me of a scene from "Coming to America." Eddie Murphy walks into a barber shop, asks for a haircut, barber cuts off his pony tail and demands $10. :D Classic.

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Managed to have the playfield slots routed today.

I've also played a bit with my pocket hole jig, and will use it to attach the sides together.

post-28820-142870582698_thumb.jpg

Then made a first test to make sure that the TV fits.

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So far so good.

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I now have to wait for the sub to arrive before routing the bottom and proceed with the final assembly.

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Made some progress today and prepared the bottom to receive the intake fan and the subwoofer.

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I could then glue it to the cab and add the legs.

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There are still tons of things on the to do list, but it already feels like an accomplishment to see it standing.

I will probably start with the Backbox tomorrow, and will try to resist and not plug the PC yet..

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Hi,

A quick question to the electricity experts.

I've realized that the light bulbs on the coin door are using 7V. I will replace them with some 12V, but I'm wondering if I can safely keep the current wires and sockets.

Thx in advance.

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Hi,

A quick question to the electricity experts.

I've realized that the light bulbs on the coin door are using 7V. I will replace them with some 12V, but I'm wondering if I can safely keep the current wires and sockets.

Thx in advance.

the wires and sockets will take the increase.

what voltage will you powering the bulbs at? if you run them at 12v you will find that they will run very hot and possibly start melting the buttons.

with the 12v bulbs you would be better off running them from the 5v psu rail. or get some White, Red, Yellow and Blue 5v leds

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the wires and sockets will take the increase.

what voltage will you powering the bulbs at? if you run them at 12v you will find that they will run very hot and possibly start melting the buttons.

with the 12v bulbs you would be better off running them from the 5v psu rail. or get some White, Red, Yellow and Blue 5v leds

Thanks a lot, I did not consider that the buttons could be damaged by the heat. I'll then first try with the 5V as suggested.

Better safe than sorry.

Cheers.

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Getting there. I still need to receive the Vishay DMD to complete the Backbox.

Should spend some time with the wiring tomorrow.

post-28820-142870583225_thumb.jpg

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Preparing the mercury switches for the nudge.

post-28820-142870583319_thumb.jpg

I've spent quite some time on the Nanotech Mot-Ion and adjusted the calibration and dead zone with DXTweak2, but it still generates too much parasites effects during gameplay to fully convince me.

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Not so much progress on the cab, as I'm still waiting for the Vishay for final measurements...

+ I'm spending way too much time playing with the tables and the new directB2S backglasses. This new feature is just... Wow!

@Mikekim,

I've followed your advise and use 5V for the front buttons and door inserts. They look much better like this... using 12V was way too bright in my opinion.

A few advises to newbies like me:

-Do not hesitate to overclock your PC and graphic card. In my case, I found an easy Youtube video to explain how to proceed with the i5 and P67 MB. This had a huge impact on the stutter.

-Look for the updated vbs scripts from Blur. They could solve my nudge issues with the switches.

Cheers

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