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Design, Paint and Final Construction Notes

Click on the image on the left to see a higher resolution image of the cabinet.

Once the primary construction was complete it was time for the finishing and decoration of the cabinet.

Raise Monitor

The monitor was originally designed to sit on the monitor shelf we had installed in the unit. When we first put the cabinet together, it became clear that it would look much better centered in the front screen. A small box was constructed which now sits underneath the monitor - it is simply screwed to the monitor shelf. This raises the monitor and gives a much better overall look.

Install Speakers

The cabinet has five speakers (four satellites and one sub-woofer). The sub is placed on the cabinet base, with the four other speakers located around the cabinet. Two speakers are under the marquee, and two are at each side of the cabinet at the back of the monitor shelf. This arrangement gives a good all-round sound.

The speakers are fastened with strong sticky pads, and face directly onto the cabinet walls. The cabinet has had a grid of holes drilled out by each speaker to let the sound out.

The speakers came with their own volume controls which were removed from one of the speakers and extended to live under the control panel. All the bare wood was then coloured black to match the cabinet design.

Top Speaker Mount
Volume Controls (under main control panel)

 

Paint Cabinet

The screw holes and places where the wood didn't quite meet (oops) were filled with wood-filler, then sanded (badly).

The cabinet was given two coats of MDF primer paint, followed by two coats of Black Gloss paint.

Install Marquee

The marquee was printed and taped together, then placed between two sheets of plastic. Beading was nailed around the edge to hold the plastic in place.

The marquee design is printed in several sections. The background is in three sections which are taped together with invisible tape - the foreground (the word MAME) was printed in two halves, then placed over the background. The foreground happened to mostly cover the joins in the background.

Install Screen

The monitor was installed into the cabinet, then carefully measured. The edges of the monitor were taped with black electricians tape.

A large piece of card was cut to size, then the monitor shape was cut from the middle. The edges of the card (it's only black on the front!) were coloured with black marker pen.

The graphics were then stuck to the card with double-sided tape, then the whole thing was mounted into the cabinet (after a very good dusting). As for the marquee, beading was nailed around the screen to hold the plastic in place.

Install Controls

The controls (which had been removed for painting) were re-installed into the cabinet.

Internal Wiring

The only additional wiring that was required was a way to control the power to the PC. As the machine is an ATX style machine, it means there is a 'soft' power button on the case. The wiring for this button was extended and linked to the far right black button on the control panel. To turn the PC on and off you simply need to click that button, and wait.

The network port on the back of the cabinet was simply into the network port on the PC with a short piece of cable.

Front Strip

To make the cabinet look more interesting, I decided to add a strip to the front panel. The front panel was originally designed to be removable to allow you to adjust any monitor settings you wished, however, with the raising of the monitor it became redundant.

During the painting I decided to permanently glue this panel in place. The design was then printed and affixed to the unit with double-sided tape.

 

 

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