Buttons are installed!

I just got back from my family’s vacation to Captiva Island, Florida. (Highly recommend it!) I had just received my Electric Ice 2 pinball flipper buttons the day before my flight, so I was really itching to install these. Buy these excellent buttons at groovygamegear.com. These flipper buttons are authentic with a twist – they are white with installable colored LEDs to change the colors at will. Even better, you can upgrade the switch to a classic leaf switch. I highly recommend this $2 upgrade because it allows you to adjust the sensitivity of the buttons and removes the non-authentic “click” of microswitches.

Just about all the buttons are installed now. You can see from the pictures that I used black wires for ground and yellow wires to connect to the iPac. I chose yellow wire to signify that they are button wires and for the front of the cabinet. Be sure to color coordinate because the wiring is going to triple in complexity once we move to lighting and force feedback!

I really want to keep this cabinet simple and not have 1,000 buttons. This is because I want guests to walk up and operate the pinball without any assistance. One button I was able to remove from the panel is the annoying “credit” button on some others’ cabinets. There is no credit button on pinballs so why add one? What I decided to do was add a microswitch to be triggered by the two lighted coin return buttons on the coin door. It is 99% intuitive and that 1% non-intuitiveness allows me to not have to hand out quarters to guests and keeps the cabinet simple and clean.

In the third picture, you can see I simply glued a microswitch, typically used for roll-over switches on a traditional pinball, in the place where my finger is pointing. I will add a spring to the actual coin return feedback (the big black thing behind the switch) to keep it taut and prevent the switch from being held down permanently. I feel this is a much simpler solution than the brackets people are building on other projects. Time will tell how it plays out.
(Oh, and in reference to my problem in the prior post, I did sleep on it and came up with a simple solution. I cut out a cardboard replica of the bottom of the cabinet and place it behind the front panel box. Now I can measure all the wiring to the proper length without having to build the cabinet yet. Perfect!)

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