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The making of the econ
Project MAME - Weecade  - VertiCade  - TaitoRama -  Nanocade ArcadeStik - econ

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Design &


Most of the arcade games I play, are vertical games. Mr. Do!, Donkey Kong and Galaga are are some of my favourite games. They are all with vertical screen orientation and they all need only on set of controls with just one button. So naturally I wan't to make a cabinet just perfect for this type of old school arcade games.

I would like to thank for sponsoring some of the parts for this project. I can definitely recommend for their great support and great products. Now go buy some pushbuttons and joysticks, you will not find a better place to do so:

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My goal was to make a compact cabinet with a vertical mounted 17" LCD monitor. This way you could also use the design for a regular mounted 19" monitor by making the cabinet a few inches wider. This way more people will hopefully benefit from the design files I will make available soon :)

The cabinet basically started out like the sketch on the left and ended up looking like the one to the right. I made about 15 sketches in between ending up with the result on the right due to size limitations and restrictions internally.

I don't think I could have made a more compact design to fit a vertical 17" or a horizontal 19". Most of my design are based around the idea of making the most compact cabinet possible. Less is more - in my opinion.



VertiCade MAME cabinet dimensions Here is a simple 3D model of the cabinet. I think it is a little bit more modern, sleek and streamlined than the WeeCade design. I can only hope it will be as popular.

IMO this design has some advantages because of the low height of the control panel. I always found that the WeeCade was too high to use comfortably at a normal table.
Verticade control panel The control panels is made of two layers of 5 mm acrylics, but you could also use 12 mm MDF.

My design only has four pushbuttons, but the is easily room for six buttons there. But I don't think there is any need of more than four buttons for me.

Opposed to my other control panels, this has holes for bolts. I don't have access to making the special brackets and metal control panels I have used earlier on, but with four button head Allen bolts, this should look fantastic too. The top layer has larger holes for the bolt heads, so they are recessed in the layer and will be flush with the surface.

I will make the control panel available for purchase through my acrylic dealer later. I will make a version with six push buttons too.
The two layers of acrylics are merged with a special solution for acrylics. Basically they become one piece after just a few minutes.

I use tomato cans for this job, but you could also use pies, pineapple, spam, beans or even beer cans...

The solution I'm using here is Evonik Acrifix 116. In the US there are similar products from Weld-on and TENSOL in the UK.


verticade panels Time to cut out the side panels from the 16 mm MDF board with a jigsaw. You definitely become better at this by practising and the key is to go slow and steady. Don't push forward, have patience.
After cutting out both sides, they were processed with a milling machine to make the edges rounded. You could also use T-moulding for a much stronger edges. I don't have the tools to do T-moulding at the moment.

VertiCade sides with mouldings Now it's time to make the mouldings. I have made the mouldings myself by cutting up some spare planks. I made them 22 mm by 22 mm. If you have a circular saw, this is a much cheaper way to do it, and it can literally be done in minutes.
VertiCade mouldings When making the mouldings, a very easy way of saving some time and getting the best possible end result, is to make both sides simultaneously. This way you can make them look exactly the same. 
Verticade fastening mouldings Time for fastening the mouldings. You only need to use a few screws, the glue should do the rest. Place the screws so that you make room for the other screws when mounting the panels.
Once again I try to do both sides simultaneously to ensure a perfect mirrored result.
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If you decide to make your own MAME cabinet using my drawings, please feel free to make a donation,  as I'm trying to raise enough money to make a new up-right cabinet, that's hard to do as a student.




[ Copyright koenigs 2012 ]