Wednesday, June 3, 2015

El Diablo Mecanico gets a facelift!

Project update! I recently re-created a new Control Panel for this cabinet!

Things that were done:
- Replaced the hardware with all Japanese parts for the controls, Sanwa JLF sticks and Sanwa buttons. Most of the time people played competitive 2-player titles on this cab, mainly fighters and puzzle games.
- removed the 3P and 4P controls. They didn't get much use, and the fact that the joysticks were angled made people not enjoy their gaming experience that well. (note to self, and all who are reading...DO NOT ANGLE the P3 and P4 sticks!)
- More elbow-space between P1 and P2
- Removed the old KeyWiz encoder, and replaced it with a XinMo. The KeyWiz is read as 1 controller, so for modern games it's a huge PITA to set up for 2-players. The XinMo reads as 2 separate controllers, and is pretty much Plug-n-play. Plus it shipped with pre-crimped wires, which saved me a couple steps.

I ended up cutting a whole new panel, priming/painting, re-applying artwork and wiring up the new controls. The artwork has been updated slightly as well.

Being that this is a wood panel I had to route the bottoms out for the Japanese controls. Here's how it's wired with the XinMo encoder.

The CPO was printed by Print Shock out of Ontario, Canada. 
I mentioned I needed tougher material for the CP, something akin to a Polylaminate material. But that stuff is a bit pricier, so I opted for a Vinyl Print with Floor Laminate applied to it.
I was pleasantly surprised on how awesome this material is for CP's. It's tough enough, and has a bit of flex...which is nice for me because I like to fold the CPO over the edges and tuck it under the T-molding when I apply it to the panel.

Here's a few close-ups of the texture of the vinyl w/ floor laminate:

The monitor has now been switched out with a wide-screen LCD. Here's the end results (hmmm, definitely needs some bezel artwork)