MAME control panel

I started mucking around with lighting for my translucent trackball this evening. Actually, last night, it’s ticked over midnight nearly two hours ago. A christmas decoration with about 1000 red green and yellow lights carked it. I figured the lights would come in handy.

So tonight I rigged up a spare power supply, using the shorting technique* to get power of the rails without being plugged into a PC, and figured I would need only one of the little christmas lights to light my track ball from beneath.

I attempted to take some photos of the back-lit trackball – it was really quite hard…

Photo 1: Totally dark room. Flash went off. Can see everything except for how well the trackball is lit.

Photo 2: Totally dark room. I set the camera to suppress the flash. Can’t see anything but the trackball. At least you know it’s there…

Photo 3: Nearly dark room. I turned on a small flashlight in the corner. I also enabled the camera’s “moon vision” function. I am not a photographer by any stretch of the imagination so I am guessing it forces the lens/iris bit to be wide open. It’s also blurry because it was a three second affair. have you ever tried to hold a camera steady for three seconds? It’s hard.

With the three pictures you can see that the trackball throws out a fair bit of light.

*Shorting technique for PSU’s: older 20-pin ATX PSU’s can be coaxed to turn on by shorting the green and black wires (pins 4 and 5) of the motherboard power connector. Once plugged into your standard 240 volts the fans will spin up and you will get power thru the 12V and 5V rails, without the need to have you PSU connected to a PC. Very handy for testing basic DC electronics, or checking your individual PC components.

MAME cabinet base – part 4

The base is coming along fine. I am up to the stage where I will have to use my router with the slot cutter to cut the slots to fit the t-molding into.

I followed some recommendations to test my skill with the router on a scrap piece of timber first – very glad I did as I found you have to be very careful not to ‘jiggle’ the router. Otherwise the slot becomes to big and the t-molding doesn’t fit snuggly in the slot.

I am going to have to figure out a method to hold the timber very securely while I am routing it. I think the slight movements that occurred whilst routing on my saw horses resulted in the ‘jiggly’ bits.

Apart from a few bits where the t-molding didn’t have a snug fit everything was pretty good. I had to use my wooden mallet to force the t-molding all the way into the slot. I’d prefer to use a rubber mallet – but I don’t have one so I’ll just have to be gentle when using the mallet to not damage the t-molding.

Here’s a shot of where I am up to. I have the top of the base, plus the supports for the top, but they are not shown because I can’t get them to stay in place without permanently fixing them in place.