Cosmic Guerilla Restoration 2 FINAL

Back again with the final part of this Cosmic Guerilla upright arcade cabinet restoration. If you missed where we got to last time, check out progress here.

So having repaired some bowing on the cab, and resprayed the metal parts, including the coin door and marquee retainers, it was time to take a look at the cosmetics of the cabinet. Universal were unusual in that they painted their cabinets largely white. I’ve not owned a white cabinet before, and with previous restorations, I’ve favoured the use of black chalk paint. Obviously that wouldn’t do here, so I had to look for another solution.

In the end, I found some partially used Annie Sloane antique chalk paint in the garage, that we had used to restore an old chair in the house a couple of years back. I thought this would fit the bill perfectly, so got to work:

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Annie Sloan paint requires a two stage application process. The paint is waxed once dry to give it a smooth finish
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Coat one going on. You can see the difference it makes immediately
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Two coats later, and left to dry in the sun, we are ready for the wax. Doesn’t require much. Using the special brush applicator, I gave the paint a light coating
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Left everything to dry for the afternoon

I found an issue with the marquee light – it appeared the ballast had blown at some point. Replacing it was difficult, as I required a 120V AC fitting, that simply cannot be found over here in the UK. So rather than importing one for the sake of originality, I bought a 12V DC LED strip light, and tapped into the coin door fitting that took the same voltage. It worked out well:

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Here’s our 12V DC coin door bulb. Tapping a wire off this was simple enough and just required a small amount of soldering
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I fed the wire up through the cabinet, and connected to my strip. I made a simple mount for it so it was positioned centrally behind the marquee

So I was now ready to remount the marquee:

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Repainted marquee retainers.

Two more jobs – replace the t-molding and drop in the now cleaned-up glass monitor bezel:

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Sourced this thick 22mm white t-molding from t-molding.com
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Re-fitted the bezel glass and control panel

And here’s the resprayed vent grille reinstalled to the top of the cab:

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Big improvement!

Coin door next. Pretty simple job this. Repopulated the hardware. I removed the old 20p sticker and found the original 10p sign underneath, so decided to keep that. Added a new lock and screwed it back onto the front of the cab:

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The coin mech was missing when I got the cab, but we can still coin up using the switch
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Resprayed coin door

The board had returned from repair, so I dropped it in, tested voltages, and fired up. Deep breath…..

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Sweet. Check out the lit up artwork at the rear

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Bingo! The monitor needed adjusting as you’d expect, but I had a solid picture, all the lights worked, it coined up and played perfectly!

Job done! Here’s some pics of the whole cab in daylight:

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Super pleased. Some before and after shots:

Cosmic Guerilla Resto 1
Stripped and cleaned, New t-molding, resprayed metal parts
Cosmic Guerilla Resto 2
Rear of cab and doors repainted and waxed
Cosmic Guerilla Resto 3
Marquee retainers resprayed, lighting fixed
Cosmic Guerilla Resto 4
Coin door stripped and resprayed

I brought the cab into the house temporarily for a few games to soak test everything:

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As you can see, the way this cab is lit, really sets it apart. I’d not played Cosmic Guerilla much before, and it really is an excellent game. Lots of depth and strategy required to score decently. If you’re unfamiliar with the mechanics of the game, I took some footage here:

My plan ultimately is to sell this on, but I’m rather hooked by the gameplay, so for now it stays!

A brief footnote – I’ve now managed to source a replacement 120V flourescent light unit from the USA, so will be dropping that in to replace the LED light.

Thanks for reading this week. if you like what you see, there are more restorations in my archives by using the Menu at the top of this page.

See you next time.

Tony

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