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This instructable is for those of you who like to game but missed or want to relive the times where those addictive coin sucking machines were on top of the game food chain.

There are a couple of instructables about arcade cabs already but none of them are like the classic style, two player, street fighter cabinets which I think are the most versatile and fun to have. Also this is made by a student without a lot of money making it a bit more accessible. (Not everyone has access to a metal workshop)

I'll explain it in three parts focusing on different sections of the cab. These are, the computer, the controls and the cabinet itself. Note that, just like all instructables, you do not have to follow my exact steps. There is a lot of room for customization. Therefore the cab i've made is not very esthetically pleasing. Not yet anyway, it's still a work in progress.

If you need more clarification or maybe an extra photo or something just add a comment.

Maybe i'll just shut up and get on with it then.

Step 1: Computer - The stuff i used

I imagine that you guys are mostly interested in gaming so I'll just start where i started, the games.

These day's it's not uncommon to have an old spare computer somewhere in the house and if you don't have one it's easy to get one. The emulator the computer is going to run is MAME, Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator. In order to get some kind of performance it is recommended that you at least have a

Pentium III processor
256 MB of RAM
a dedicated graphics card ( anything from the NVidia GeForce2 and up, or comparable ATI card will do)

As always the better your system specs, the better your games will run. But the operating system of choice will also be a factor.

I went for performance and grabbed my old and trusted Sony VAIO.
It has a
Pentium IV - 2.4 GHz
1024 MB of RAM
NVidia GeForce4 MX 440

This is overkill i know but i did it anyway.
Especial because i will be running a Linux distribution on it.

The next few steps will not have any pictures because there just isn't much to see. If you really want some screen captures just ask and I'll add it as soon as possible.
How the heck did you get Street Fighter III to work on MAME? Amazing tutorial.
street fighter III asia (NO CD) is the one that works if you use the latest mame version.
SFIII just worked with me, although i have 4 versions of which one only worked. Not the US one.
Can u please send me the plans at maecclub@googlemail.com ???
57th :P <br> <br> <br>
I wish I had a home, instead of a computer
would really like the plans neverknowingwhy@hotmail.co.uk thanks, awesome instructable
games didnt work,i used marvel vs capcom on windows.went to cmd and typed in C:\mame\roms\mvscu.zip and it says the directory is invalid...<br />
and are u sure, u have your file in that directory?<br />
I gotta admit it... I saw a Centipede arcade in my local arcade. It kinda made me sad that I got the high score easily, whicch meant that nobody played it, but it was easily the funnest and the most long lasting game in the arcade. I seriously think that arcades waste your money nowadays<br />
I'm making my own using an old pc running linux. My cabinet was drawn out, then blown up to size. Its based off the Ms. Pacman/ Galaga cabinet model. If anyone wants the plans, feel free to contact my gmail (tombocat9@gmail.com).<br /> <br /> BTW Awesome Instructable. :)<br />
You know, I&nbsp;love how Player Start buttons resemble bathroom signs.&nbsp;Makes sense. <br /> Great instructable!<br />
i would also like the plans internet_gamer3@msn.com
hay i live in australia so were do i go to get this stuff.?
For Windows users, you can make the MAME program start on startup by going to: Start; Control Panel, Performance and maintenance, Scheduled Tasks, Add Scheduled Task, click browse then find your frontend program and select the option "When my computer starts"
Nevermind I found it.
Could you refer me to the page on Ultimarc.com where you found the I-Pac VE, i've looked for it, but can't find it.
what year is the computer
lol there's a Orange Box in the picture :D
Awesome Instructable. I especially like how you point out Windows' limitations subtly throughout the tutorial. That's a really hot arcade you have now.
me tooo!!! loco_o.p.p@hotmail.com
if anyone is interested I have a way to make your own switches with litteraly some wood pr plastic and a soda can. and nice thing is they actually last longer and have better reaction time
oh yeah a link to one of my attempts before realising it was to big to move easily so I opted for a smaller version that is easy to move like 10 in the back seat of a car and one that actually feels like the bridge of the enterprise (video projector mounted on top for bridge main screen effect.<br/><br/>Gauntlet2 before being stored away <br/><br/><a rel="nofollow" href="http://extinction.site88.net/arcade1.html">http://extinction.site88.net/arcade1.html</a><br/><br/>(smaller version in the design stages as I need to come up with working LCD monitors for this design)<br/><br/><a rel="nofollow" href="http://extinction.site88.net/minicab.html">http://extinction.site88.net/minicab.html</a><br/>
you really should talk about i-pac alternatives such as the &quot;keyboard hack&quot; One possible solution to the interface issue is to cannibalize an old keyboard and turn it into an interface. You can &quot;hot wire&quot; a connection between your buttons and joysticks so that when the switches that comprise these components are switched, they &quot;press&quot; the appropriate key by closing the switch under the keys on the keyboard. This method is for the intrepid do-it-youselfer, and requires a good deal of patience. here are some sites to help: <a rel="nofollow" href="http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.aleax.com/personal/alias/arcade/kbd_controller_top_2.jpg&amp;imgrefurl=http://www.aleax.com/personal/alias/arcade/p2_wiring.php&amp;h=360&amp;w=500&amp;sz=37&amp;hl=en&amp;start=10&amp;sig2=2zXSYlF-kTCQTrsDMQWueA&amp;um=1&amp;tbnid=1qsw_bxVvBvnGM:&amp;tbnh=94&amp;tbnw=130&amp;ei=ea1ESMygLIe6iwGswZiWBg&amp;prev=/images%3Fq%3Dmame%2Bkeyboard%2Bhack%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26newwindow%3D1%26rlz%3D1B3GGGL_enUS276US276%26sa%3DN">http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.aleax.com/personal/alias/arcade/kbd_controller_top_2.jpg&amp;imgrefurl=http://www.aleax.com/personal/alias/arcade/p2_wiring.php&amp;h=360&amp;w=500&amp;sz=37&amp;hl=en&amp;start=10&amp;sig2=2zXSYlF-kTCQTrsDMQWueA&amp;um=1&amp;tbnid=1qsw_bxVvBvnGM:&amp;tbnh=94&amp;tbnw=130&amp;ei=ea1ESMygLIe6iwGswZiWBg&amp;prev=/images%3Fq%3Dmame%2Bkeyboard%2Bhack%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26newwindow%3D1%26rlz%3D1B3GGGL_enUS276US276%26sa%3DN</a> <a rel="nofollow" href="http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.mattkicks.com/blog/images/keyboard1.jpg&amp;imgrefurl=http://www.mattkicks.com/blog/2006_12_01_archive.html&amp;h=607&amp;w=698&amp;sz=105&amp;hl=en&amp;start=18&amp;sig2=27g5LzuQoUiazcbunrQJKg&amp;um=1&amp;tbnid=flzSlbceaeVzMM:&amp;tbnh=121&amp;tbnw=139&amp;ei=ea1ESMygLIe6iwGswZiWBg&amp;prev=/images%3Fq%3Dmame%2Bkeyboard%2Bhack%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26newwindow%3D1%26rlz%3D1B3GGGL_enUS276US276%26sa%3DNhttp://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.hellspark.com/dm/mame/deprecated/keyboard/MVC-388F.JPG&amp;imgrefurl=http://www.hellspark.com/dm/mame/deprecated/keyboard/&amp;h=480&amp;w=640&amp;sz=74&amp;hl=en&amp;start=32&amp;sig2=mkOZ-8wUZizJ8Pbwf9OX2w&amp;um=1&amp;tbnid=v645HAy3ny0UKM:&amp;tbnh=103&amp;tbnw=137&amp;ei=L65ESLuKLYHIiAGu-KSQBg&amp;prev=/images%3Fq%3Dmame%2Bkeyboard%2Bhack%26start%3D18%26ndsp%3D18%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26newwindow%3D1%26rlz%3D1B3GGGL_enUS276US276%26sa%3DN">http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.mattkicks.com/blog/images/keyboard1.jpg&amp;imgrefurl=http://www.mattkicks.com/blog/2006_12_01_archive.html&amp;h=607&amp;w=698&amp;sz=105&amp;hl=en&amp;start=18&amp;sig2=27g5LzuQoUiazcbunrQJKg&amp;um=1&amp;tbnid=flzSlbceaeVzMM:&amp;tbnh=121&amp;tbnw=139&amp;ei=ea1ESMygLIe6iwGswZiWBg&amp;prev=/images%3Fq%3Dmame%2Bkeyboard%2Bhack%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26newwindow%3D1%26rlz%3D1B3GGGL_enUS276US276%26sa%3DNhttp://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.hellspark.com/dm/mame/deprecated/keyboard/MVC-388F.JPG&amp;imgrefurl=http://www.hellspark.com/dm/mame/deprecated/keyboard/&amp;h=480&amp;w=640&amp;sz=74&amp;hl=en&amp;start=32&amp;sig2=mkOZ-8wUZizJ8Pbwf9OX2w&amp;um=1&amp;tbnid=v645HAy3ny0UKM:&amp;tbnh=103&amp;tbnw=137&amp;ei=L65ESLuKLYHIiAGu-KSQBg&amp;prev=/images%3Fq%3Dmame%2Bkeyboard%2Bhack%26start%3D18%26ndsp%3D18%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26newwindow%3D1%26rlz%3D1B3GGGL_enUS276US276%26sa%3DN</a> <br/>
This is a common solution, and quite a simple one. However, keyboards are only built to register one key press at a time. This is quite important when you want to play games such as Street Fighter, which require multiple button combos.
yeah I personally used/ resorted to using a hacked game pad. check out my mame stuff / instructable...
help!! I have an old street fighter cabinet that I took apart piece by piece. (sides front, etc.) and the side are made out of fiberboard, and the fibrous board show up if painted. I was going to use a THICK black paint to cover it. just wondering if anyone can help? also I am running mame 32 with fighter type roms is there any way to find out button combos for each game? ex. button 1 - punch x3 + button 3 - kick = turbo kick. also its not a good idea to post you e-mail I could send you viagra e-mails and get paid for it!!! (well..... hypothetically that is) <br/>
1st off, try a little sandpaper maybe? Second google command.dat for you combo questions. If sandpaper dosent work try gluing some facing on it.
That?Old?Vaio?<br/><h2>are you j/k?that didnt seem right</h2>
I've always wanted to make my own arcade from scratch but I never had the time :( You could use a real coin instead of the coin button :P For example when you insert the coin you activate a switch and then coin falls in a special container than can have an opening to get the coin an reuse it :)
It makes me sad when people take cabinets that should have been restored and turn them into ugly mish mash mame cabinets running on an old computer they had sitting around. I dont think there is a single instructable involving arcade hardware that doesnt involve mame in some way or another.
I know what you mean, i'm all for restoring stuff so it can be used. that's why i saved all the parts for future use. Also you must understand the goal mame has which i think is a very good thing. More and more developers are giving out their old games as free roms.
thanks for al the comments, I'm still busy getting some screenshots for the software section so they'll be up in about a week.
I should upload some pics of my MAME cabinet. It's great fun!
I think I was a tad slow on this one. I was actually going to do this yesterday, but I didn't. :(
Wonderful, black hammerite paint on wood makes it look like metal. Its a great make. Wish I had the space for one. Well done

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