Introduction: Custom Coin Door Inserts for an Arcade Cabinet
If you have an arcade cabinet at home (whether original or custom), here's a little something you can do to give it that extra-special, personal touch. Instead of the standard, boring '25 cents' or 'quarters only' script on your coin door slots, you can make a totally custom design instead!
What you'll need:
1.Flat bladed screwdriver
3.Black & white laser printer
4.Laser printer transparency film
5. Razor / X-ACTO knife
Step 1: Remove the Coin Door Slots / Buttons From the Coin Door.
Obviously, this task will vary, depending on whether or not you have an original, aftermarket, or a faux coin door. My example here shows a coin door that I purchased through SUZO/HAPP Controls, which is a fully-functional coin door. In this case, there's an E-clip that holds the coin return button in the slot housing. I used a flat-bladed screwdriver to pop the E-clip off.
Step 2: Remove the Insert From Coin Return Button
Next, take the X-ACTO knife or razor and carefully push the insert out of the coin button. In my case there's slots on both ends of the button, with only one side large enough to push in the insert out of. Keep in mind, your application may vary. Once the insert is removed, you can use it for a size reference when printing out your new inserts.
Step 3: Create Your Design.
I used Photoshop for this project, but almost any graphic program will do. Since my home arcade is called 'The Moonlight Mini-Arcade', I wanted the arcade name on the insert, along with a graphic of a moon. Keep in mind how small these inserts are; don't make the design too busy or hard to read.
Step 4: Print and Cut Out Your Design.
Make sure you have a laser printer for this project, as it's required to print onto a transparency. With regular paper, print out a draft of your insert, so you can get the sizing right for the coin insert. Don't worry if it takes a few tries to get it 'just right'. Once you have it how you like it, print out a final copy onto the transparency film and cut it out of the transparency page with some sharp scissors or your razor / X-ACTO knife. I actually ended up printing two, and placing them on top of each other before inserting them into the coin button. The reason for this is that the back lighting for the coin slot housing made one insert look too pale. Two inserts were able to fit in the coin button, and made it look much better. I also added a piece of white paper behind the two transparencies to create added opacity. You'll have to experiment with this to see what works best.
Step 5: Reassemble the Coin Door and Celebrate!
Once you have your inserts completed and installed in the coin buttons, reassemble your coin door. I used the needle-nose pliers to help push the E-clips back on. Once the coin door is reassembled, power up the cabinet and check out your final product. I am fairly pleased with the look of the new inserts, and they're actually quite readable. Although it's a subtle change, it's a great way to to make your cabinet truly unique. I may end up converting my arcade to tokens at some point, so I might be doing this again in the future . . . oh, well! Enjoy!