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I picked up the cabinet on eBay for about 100 bucks, with shipping it totaled $275!   I recommend trying to find one locally before going this route. The cabinet was a working Klax that had been converted from a Bally Sente game ( I think it was a "Blades of Steel" ). One of my goals was to not ruin a perfectly working "original" game or one that could be fixed up. This one had been through enough changes already that I didn't feel too bad about it.

I had wanted to get a 25" cabinet but was way too impatient. I'm half glad I was. Most of the games I remember had 19" monitors and having played the "reunion" cab which is 25" I have to say that I don't really like it. I do wish I had tried to get an old Atari style cab like Centipede or Dig Dug.

The cabinet was in good shape, monitor had some burn in and one of the casters had broke from the particle board bottom either during shipping or while we were lugging it in the house. These things are *HEAVY*. Here's a picture of the cabinet before it shipped to my house.

First I completely gutted it, saving everything, and cleaned it. I patched the small holes on the sides with wood putty because I knew I wanted to put artwork on the sides. Originally I was going to buy Defender stencils but went with something sort of original instead. I painted the whole thing, first with latex primer and later with flat black latex paint. I also put a few coats of polyurethane on the outside. I removed the monitor ( after discharging it ) and marked the angle the stand was at to be able to duplicate it later, and then removed the wooden monitor stand and metal brackets. Here are some pictures of it in progress.

For sound I used a Cambridge Soundworks system with sub-woofer. It sounds great. I must have listened to the "insert coin" sound on Defender 50 times after I hooked it up. I used some flexible plumbing strip metal and some wood blocks to mount the speakers aside of the existing speaker. There is a grill that covers this area so it should look OK. I did a horrible job with the jigsaw cutting the holes for the speakers and as a result you could see the marquee light coming through which was annoying. Some Taco Bell napkins strategically stuffed around the speakers did the trick. I eventually had to do a little soldering on the woofer PCB because it would cut in and out while playing a game. Most of the screws holding down exposed parts of the machine, including the mesh speaker cover, are of the type "locking torque". I found mine at an auto parts store.

I use PinMAME as well as MAME so I wanted to have pinball flippers on the machine. This wasn't too bad using a 1 1/8" bi-metal hole saw attached to my handheld drill. See below for the link to PinMAME, it's as close as you can get to the real thing without having it take up half your living room.

The marquee lamp worked but was hooked up to the original ( now removed ) circuitry so I just used an old AC cord and soldered it together. The cabinet seemed a little low to me so I built a small platform for the cabinet to sit on. Some 2x4s and 3/4" perf board worked just fine.

I also bought new T-Molding for it from