Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Artwork Arrives

My Artwork Arrives
  My artwork has finally arrived.  I had them mail it straight to my house, and it only took them one day to print.  Kudos Office Depot!
The artwork came in a tube, which I rolled out to gaze at how good the artwork came out.

T-Molding Cutout

  First, I need to cut out my T-molding for later.  I have ordered the part but it hasn't gotten in yet.  I bought a 1/16" bit for this, which I know is too big but it is the only one I could find even that small.  I could not find the smaller bit size, so I plan on hot gluing the t-molding in place when it arrives.

  I used the routing table from my friend and cut a straight line on the sides and from of my control panel.  Thanks again for all the advice and hardware Taylor!

Placing Black Borders On The Control Panel
  Next, I need to finish the control panel before I apply my artwork, so I de-buttoned and joysticked the control panel, and started working on hooking up my coin buttons.

  My artwork does not perfectly fit onto the control panel so I decided to paint a black border around the top of the control panel to not be as obvious.  I also spray painted the bottom of the CP to help with the coin up buttons.

Setting Up The Coin Up Buttons
  I need to now place my blocks of wood for the front of the control panel, which is were I will be placing the coin up buttons for each player as well.  I have cut out three blocks of wood from my MDF sheet and I will be placing these below the control panel and drilling a button hole for each player.
I used some L brackets to attach the coin up blocks with some 1/2" screws so they do not go all the way through the MDF wood. 
  Now that I have all three blocks set up and all the buttons wired I am able to apply the artwork.
Here is a shot of the control without the artwork laid upon it.
And here is a shot with the artwork laid upon it. 
 Does it look alright, Pac-Man thinks so!

Applying The Artwork.
  I will be using Super 77 3M glue to apply the artwork to the control panel.  Once again my lovely wife helped me with this step, and I recommend two people for applying such big artwork.

  First, we applied the glue to the artwork and also the control panel.  We then laid down one corner and had one person applying a lot of pressure with their arm flat on the artwork to the control panel.  This was kinda like a roller pin, to give you a good idea of what we were doing.  We wanted the artwork to go on flat and with no air bubbles left in it. 
  After applying the artwork, I went back over it and made sure there were no air bubbles.
 Here we have the applied artwork.  It really does look way better than I thought it would.  Onto cutting the holes!
Cutting Control Panel Holes
  I used an exacto blade and trimmed off any artwork that was hanging over the side of the control panel.  Here are the remnants of the side scarps.
   I then went through and cut out all the holes for the buttons and the trackball.
Trackball hole is cut!
Here are all the holes cut for the control panel. I now am going to seal the artwork.
Sealing The Artwork
  I looked for a long time for very thin sheets of plexiglass or plastic, but I could not find a sheet big enough and thin enough for what I wanted.  The plastic had to be thin so my trackball will be tall enough to use when going through the plexiglass.  After a long debate, I finally decided I would just seal the artwork with Mod Podge, which my wife suggested.  I know, I know, my artwork can still get damaged, etc. but honestly, I am not expecting this to last forever, and my friends are pretty responsible...?
  With this decided I went and got a small can of Mod Podge for $5 from Hobby Lobby, the Matte kind.  I then applied thin layers to the artwork, around 8 or so, with a small paint roller and let them dry for 5 minutes between coats.  This actually gave it a good matte look, and I am proud of how it came out.
You cannot see it as well, but the high gloss finish has been toned down and I think it looks more like a traditional arcade with the coats of mod podge placed upon it.  Now to add the hardware.

 Adding The Hardware
Buttons and Trackball are on and it is looking good.  The only bad part is Ken will be cut off from the joystick. :(
Here is the whole shot of the control panel.  Now I need to applying T-Molding and work on the Marquee.  Almost done with this bad boy, but now I am going to test out the rig!
Thanks for tuning in!  Until next time!

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