I previously built a minifig display case but it was big, heavy, and awkward. It also did not have a glass cover in the front and seemed to collect lots of dust, so I decided to redo it.
I decided to make it 5 columns 4 rows of minifigs so 20 per display case. The Fusion360 design is totally parametric (I think) so I can easily adjust these to customize it.
There are 3 types of material used. 1/4 MDF for the frame and shelves, the white support board (like you get from cheap bookshelves), and plexiglass for the front cover.
I used bolts for the 4 corners of the frame. I did not want to use glue. Here you can see the notch that holds the M3 bolts.
I used neodymium magnets, 5x3mm circles, to hold the front glass together. The 1st and 3rd shelves have notches where I used epoxy to glue 4 magnets to the shelf. There are also 3mm holes cut in the plexiglass. It’s kind of weird, but works and I didn’t have to use any hinges.
I used a hot glue gun to mount the minifigs using the engraged indicators for perfect spacing!
After the first one was a success, I made 2 more. Still need another one!
I used 2 sawtooth picture frame mounts per display case to mount everything to the wall. All done!
I created another size for my 4 larger minifigs. It really tested my parametric design, which didn’t do so well so I had to make updates.
I noticed that my MDF was pretty fresh, so it was dry and also not as thick as I spec’d it out for. Also, I put the magnets in the middle, but since there is only 1 shelf, it’s a little wobbly. Going to add stoppers the top and bottom to make sure the glass sits straight.
Emma made me this beautiful ceramic heart for Valentines Day! I decided to make a lightbox style frame to hang it on the wall using slots and glue to keep everything secure.
I designed the frame in Fusion360. It was built with 3 different materials and thicknesses: plexiglass, MDF, and supportboard for the back. This is my first multi-part laser piece.
These settings work for me for 1/4 dry MDF. 60watts, 10mm/s, 40-50% power, 2 passes (roughly 13 milliamps). It’s just enough to see the burn through the bottom and pop the pieces out of MDF.
Pieces fit together perfectly. My laser hasn’t been calibrated yet so the cuts were slightly at an angle but for such small connections, it wasn’t an issue.
I added the piece to the frame. The light blue/white heart didn’t show to well with the white background.
And here is the final product! Might engrave something on the bottom right later just for fun, but for now it looks amazing.
My first really difficult built, that I did for me and my little girl. Didn’t have the right tools or experience, so it was built mostly with elbow grease, vision, and determination. The machine supports MAME emulation along with many other consoles.
I built everything with 5/8 MDF because it was cheap, sturdy, and the 4×8 panels cut in half at Home Depot provided dimensions just about right.
The buttons are from Ebay. You can find them by searching for “Xin-mo buttons” or Jamma. This kit came with all the wiring, 2 joysticks, and colored buttons. Button layout is up to you.
Using a “spade” drill bit that matched the button size, I attached the buttons and screwed in the joysticks. The buttons have a small lip so if the whole isn’t perfect, it’s not a big deal.
The rubber/plastic trim is called t-molding that I got from t-molding.com. Pick your color, they even have light up molding. You need a router to make a cut in the middle of the wood. When you buy the t-molding, they’ll tell you the bit you need with the specs.
Do NOT paint with a rattle can, use a FOAM roller. The furry roller will not give you a smooth surface. So far all these pieces I cut with a jigsaw. Super dusty, not straight, tons of sanding, would not recommend. Also, I used Phillips screws… I would definitely go with hex. And always use pilot holes! The monitor I found on Craigslist — it’s strange to realize you can barely buy a 4:3 screen anymore.
The computer originally was built with leftover computer parts. Later on, I replaced it with a tiny Raspberry Pi that worked even better than this linux based setup!
In the useful links section at the bottom of this post, I’ll link where you can find MAME ROMs legitimately. Here is the first test, she likes it!
I couldn’t afford to print graphics, so I used my projector to help me trace some graphics which I later painted.
I used acrylic paint, lots of it, then finished it off with black outline, then coated it with rattle can clear coat. Emma is lucky I love her so much, never doing this again. It was incredibly difficult.
I found a local shop that prints on translucent adhesive. I designed this logo myself (emma-arcade, get it?). I tried to print this on my color laser, but it came out like garbage. The translucent adhesive is stuck onto plexiglass which I cut and mounted with black duct tape. The light is a small 18″ fluorescent light that I easily mounted. I also cut plexiglass as a cover to the monitor.
After all that work and finding tons of ROMs, she only wants to play a few games like Simpsons or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.. oh well.
The speakers I used were battery powered, so I bought a pair of cheap computer speakers instead.
The computer setup had a really bad interface, so I ripped everything out and replaced it with a tiny Raspberry Pi running RetroPie, much better!
The speaker grill was terrible so 3D printed 2 speaker grills from thingiverse.com, looks much better.
The fluorescent light I wasn’t happy with, so I replaced it with an LED light strip that was much brighter.
3D printed a little coin door that I will make functional later!