Tablet Arcade (iPad Arcade) FAIL

I started by marking off a small section of
3/4 inch MDF. I cut it off using a straight edge as a guide
and my circular saw. I then cut down all of the sections on my
table saw, but there’s no reason you couldn’t also do this with a handheld. I then took the sections over to my workbench
and began the process of transferring the dimensions from my plans to the side panels. OK. So one of the things I get in my comments
a lot or get emailed to me a lot that I want to hopefully resolve with this little tip
and that is that there is some angle or some radius that you did not include in your plan
file and therefore I can’t make your arcade because your plans suck. And the truth of the matter is you don’t
need those angles. And now I do include as many as I think about
including in the plans in most cases, but I just want to show you why you don’t need
those angles. So for example this is the top or what will
be the top of our arcade and the marquee top is going is going to be at an angle. Now what we have done is we have measured
the top of the arcade and the bottom of the top of the back of the arcade. If you put both of those dimensions and then
draw a straight line then you’ll see it looks like there is about 3/4 of an inch here. All you have to do is connect the dot from
here to here. You don’t need to know the angle. Simply connect the corners of the square with
a rule and draw a line. You’ll repeat this process everywhere there
is an angled section of the arcade. For the curved section, I just freehanded
it because getting out the compass would take too long, and getting it exact is unnecessary. I then used some double sided fabric tape
and joined the two side panels together. This will allow me to cut them together, saving
time and making sure they are exact matches. I clamped them to my workbench and used a
jigsaw to cut the first one out. I like to use my air compressor to blow the
dust away as I am cutting so I can see the line. For the second arcade I used my bandsaw to
cut it out, this went much faster. OK. So I’ve got one of the iPad arcades mocked
up here. And I’ve just got it clamped together. I don’t have it glued yet. And this is an opportunity to point out that
before you glue, or screw, or nail, or however you decide to put your iPad arcade together. That if you are going to put T-Molding in
it you need to route the slots for t-molding now before you put it together. Once you put this thing together it will be
almost impossible to add that slot later without messing other things up. So just take that as a note and we’re going
to go ahead and slot ours for t-molding. I used my router table to make all of the
slots for the t-molding. Generally on larger arcades you would use
a handheld router, but since this is so small the router table made quick work of it. I used glue and brad nails to assemble my
iPad arcade. If you don’t have a brad nailer you could
just used glue and clamps. You could also just screw it together with
wood screws. Brad nails are only there to hold it together
while the glue dries. Brad nails alone are not strong enough. If you do decide to use brad nails, be sure
to hold the gun at a 90 degree angle, otherwise you’ll wind up with nails protruding from
the side panels! Spray on some Super 77 adhesive to the drilling
template and give them a few seconds to get tacky. Then apply it to the control panel. I used a Forstner bit to drill out the temples. I have a video on using these templates on you might want to check out. Before painting MDF, you should always prime
it. I really like filler primer because it fills
in all of the imperfections nicely. OK. I’m going to go ahead and paint them and
I am going to paint one of them black and use blue t-molding and then I am going to
paint the other one yellow and use black t-molding. That will add a little variety and I am going
to use a couple of different colors of buttons that I’ve used before in the past as well. So let’s get started. When painting MDF I generally use three coats
of paint, about 7 or 8 minutes apart from each other. This seems to work really well. I do not sand between coats, or do any other
prep work, except for a light sanding of the filler primer before the first coat of paint. Alright, well now I am going to put the t-molding
on. And I am going to use blue t-molding on the
black one and I am going to use black t-molding on the yellow one. And now unfortunately I have a big roll of
blue t-molding but I can not find it anywhere so I don’t have enough to finish the black
cabinet so what I am going to do is I am just going to splice in on the back side some black
because you’re probably never going to see it. So that’s why when you see on the video
there will be a little bit of black on the backside of the blue one. So the other thing I want to talk about real
quickly before we go into this is that anywhere your t-molding bends over a corner you need
to notch the t-track that is on the bottom and I’ll demonstrate that on the video. It’s very important if you want your t-molding
to fit flushly at all of the turns. I have a separate video on installing T-Molding
on that you might also want to check out. Generally I use a small rubber mallet to persuade
the T-Molding into the track. I notch it at the corners with simple pair
of dikes. At the ends just use a very sharp razor knife
to cut it off square. OK. So the next step is going to be to figure
out how to connect our joysticks and our buttons to the iPad. And there’s kind of a number of ways to
do this. But what I decided I thought would be the
best one is to use this little bluetooth module from Adafruit. Basically it is really simple. What it is. What you do. Sorry I thought I had this over here. So what you do is you take a USB cable. Any USB cable you find should do fine and
just cut one end off of it. And what we will do is we will plug this end
into a USB charger. This is just an iPad charger, but any charger
will work and then cut the other end off of it. There will be four wires and the ones you
are interested in will be the black wire and the red wire. And so these will provide power to this little
bluetooth module and on the top row if this bluetooth module is section plugging in keys
on a keyboard and this is really fantastic, because what we’re going to do is not plug
keys into it, we’re going to plug the wires and we’re going to have to cut these connectors
off but we’re going to plug our wires from our buttons and our joysticks into these modules
across the top. That will allow us to control the iPad and
play video games using these buttons over bluetooth. To cover up all of the unused bare wires,
I slid some heat shrink tubing over it. I highly recommend using a heat gun to contract
the heat shrink. Some people like to use a lighter, but it
can cause damage to your wiring and the heat shrink itself. Once that was done, I connected the bare ends
to my multimeter, plugged it into a USB charger and checked to make sure we got 5 volts. At this point I installed the joystick and
buttons into the control panel. This just takes four screws and a couple of
plastic nuts. The joystick comes with a plastic donut that
covers the hole, don’t forget to install it before screwing the ball onto the top of
it. I drilled a hole into the back of both cabinets
to accept the USB cable. Push the cable through the hole and then tie
a knot in the cable. This will keep the cable from pulling out
later and damaging our electronics. One of my favorite tools for electronics is
this little pair of helping hands, I used them to hold the adafruit in place while I
soldered on the power wires. You’ll know you did it right if you can
see the adafruit showing up on your devices bluetooth screen. The Sanwa joysticks are not labeled. So I used the continuity mode of my multimeter
to determine which wires were up, down, left, and right. I soldered the grounds from the joystick and
the two buttons together, and then once again used a section of heat shrink tubing to cover
them. I then soldered the joystick and all of the
buttons to the adafruits keyboard contacts. Well. I am holding my head in shame. We’re going to have to stop this project
here and move on. I’m going to have to go ahead and call this
project a complete fail. I was really struggling with whether or not
to even show this video or put it on YouTube. But I felt like ya know its my first big fail
project and I just thought I’d share it with you anyway. So here’s the problem. The Adafruit keyboard controller works great
as a keyboard controller. That’s exactly what it is supposed to do. However, iOS is very limited in what it can
support via a keyboard. So a lot of these games, well in fact all
of these games that work on the iPad under iOS they actually send a key press on key
down and a keypress on key up and this is how they get passed some of the limitations
for what the iPad can support via keyboard. Now this would work fine on an Android device
or even a Windows device. Unfortunately I don’t have an Android device
and my Windows device if far too large to fit in this arcade cabinet. So I’ll probably pick this up again in the
future with a different device when I can get around to finding one and we’ll finish
it with an Android device. There’s also the option of putting an Arduino
in here and making the Arduino send the key presses kind of as a middle man. I don’t have time to go through and write
all of the script right now. I’ve been working on this project for three
weekends. I was supposed to just be one weekend. I just can’t take any more time. So with that you have seen my first fail video
and so hopefully we will pick it back up and finish it at some point. Thanks for watching.

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