Summer came, and with it came summer school money and some time off. I decided to finish a few details still left on the cabinet, first of all, the T-Molding. I ordered from groovygamegear.com and decided to get to work. What should have been easy ended up being a nightmare!
As I stated before, the HotRod CP overlaps the edges of the cabinet. This was not a problem at first, as I hadn’t put the T-Molding in the existing grooves yet. However, when I did this, I removed the side flipper buttons from the CP and drilled holes in the sides of the cabinet for those same buttons, as seen in the pictures above.
The problem was, even after measuring and remeasuring, the holes were just slightly off. The buttons would not easily slide in, so I had to use a rubber mallet to (gently) bang them in. Some sawdust was made, but it wasn’t a big deal. However, the problem now was, I needed to get the control panel off, and it was almost impossible! The side buttons just wouldn’t come out.
I weighed my options. One idea was to put the T-molding right up to the edges of the CP, but not underneath. The other would be to use the aforementioned rubber mallet (eek) to get the side buttons out. Pros and cons either way were pretty much a wash. I decided to go for the nicer look of having all the T-Molding in, even if it was covered up my the control panel. So, I got under the panel and started banging on the button from the inside.
Keep in mind, the only thing holding the CP on at this point was those buttons. I started banging away and got one out with no problems. When doing the other side, I hear a sickening CRACK! Lo and behold, the side of the HotRod cracked right in half around the button hole.
Now I have a serious problem. Not only will my CP not stay attached, the front of the CP, which sticks out a bit, as you can see from the pictures, is partially missing. The whole CP was a mess now. After crying about it (on the inside at least) for a few days, I decided to use some brackets and attach the top of the CP on as well as I could. It is not nearly as sturdy as it was before, but it would hold together for the time being.
I was able to get the T-Molding on, and wow, what a difference it made! Too bad I screwed up the rest of it getting the stuff put on. Now I have more messes to clean up and the cab looks about the same as it did before: ugly.
But, once again, it was playable, and so I didn’t do much with it, which is the curse of any MAME cabinent maker.