I have been wanting to build a MAME system for quite some time now. Until recently my father would not let me get a cabinet to start my build. Now, he suddenly changed his mind…only after I had to pass up on several free cabinets.
After searching through several Craigslist listings, I found a nice one. Some one was selling a Beach Head 2000 cabinet with a USB interface installed for only $100! First, I googled what the cabinet looked like and it is a pretty nice, and big build. I also discovered that the cabinet is worth about $800 so, it was a great deal! After contacting the guy on a Friday, he tells me he did some googling as well and he decided to raise the price to $250. I talked him down to $200.
I was trying to get a time when I could pick the cabinet up, he kept delaying. On Monday the guy gives me some bad news. He was playing the game and he says the monitor just died…He dropped the price down to $125, I decided to go ahead and take it because I could always replace the monitor with a cheap TV if not repair it. So, that night (Monday) I drive out there with my dad’s van and picked up the cabinet. It was somewhat difficult loading up because of the odd shape, but we got it in there. Drove home and had some difficulty unloading by myself. I got the cabinet out of the van and was going to roll it in my house with my dolly, which just happened to be broken. Luckily, the cabinet has wheels on the back which helped, but was still rather difficult.
Once inside, I try it out hoping the monitor magically fixed itself. It did not, the screen was black, like the seller said. I decide to take the monitor out and check it out to see if the issue is something I can fix. I don’t see any issues right away, but I did mess with the brightness on the flyback and I managed to get an image!
The image is, however, distorted in a couple ways. The colors are off and the image is rotated. Thanks to the Arcade Controls forum, I find some help. It was all the yoke! I figure out the yoke is rotated, so I rotate it back. However, I still have some major color issues. We try some things, but nothing is working. I later discover that the yoke is still the problem, it is not close enough to the tube. I attempt to get it closer, but continually fail. Then, I go on vacation and just leave it there on the kitchen table.
Now would be a good time to show off the actual cabinet. It’s in very good condition and has a Happ Fighting UGCI(the USB interface) which is worth about as much as I paid for the cabinet. Lucky me, I get to add some joysticks and buttons!
Whilst the monitor was indisposed, I had a temporary LCD to play some Simpsons Bowling!
I waited for my brother the get home to place the monitor back in the cabinet. The monitor is a Wells Gardner D9200 which weighs about 100 lbs, and I did not want to ruin my handy work by dropping it. We move it back in the cabinet and everything is fine. The monitor works great. I get the computer running and bam! Arcade.
Now I am working on getting some new buttons and joysticks to build a MAME control panel as well as working on the software end.