Sideart and Marquee

When I bought the cabinet for SpiffMAME, the original Space Panic-sideart was in a somewhat deteriorated state. The plastic covering the side-art was ruined in several places. Other parts of the cabinet, such as the tainted plexi-glass in front of the monitor and the white top of the cabinet had a lot of cigarette burns, and the control-panel had been badly remade, with a horribly tough joystick. Finally the marquee consisted of a piece of clear plexi-glass with the kind of tinted film used for car windows applied very badly (eg. lots of air-bubbles) and behind that the actual marquee was just a white piece of paper printed on a laser-printer and not even the full size of the plexi-glass.

After having created a new control panel, I decided that something had to be done about the horrible looking Space Panic side-art. The first step was to paint the cabinet. I spent most of a week sanding it down and giving it primer, and then several layers of matte black car-paint. The result was very pleasing. The black finish with just a single peice of the original artwork (the green monster just above the screen, below the marquee) had turned the cabinet from an old beaten-up space-panic to a sleek generic look, perfect for a machine running MAME, with all the different types of games this provides.

The looks of this cabinet was good enough to be in my living room for more than a year, before I finally decided to finish the artwork on it. The decision actually came from stumbling upon mamemarquees.com and deciding that the effort needed to create custom side-art and a marquee was simply not worth is, when I could get some very nice looking artwork from this site. Had I decided to do it myself, the time needed would amount to quite a bit, and I don't think the quality of the finished result would have been quite as good. The price would probably have been higher as well. I therefore ordered a set of generic MAME sidart stickers and a marquee.

Left side of SpiffMAME

As you can see from the above image, the side-art is a big sticker with the MAME-logo vertically down the side of the cabinet. A lot of different characters from various games are included in the image as well. There is a similar logo on the right side of the machine, but with the text starting from the top, and the characters being in different positions. To mount the stickers, I cleaned the side of the cabinet, and after carefully measuring the position I wanted the sticker in, I applied it from the top, using a ruler as a squeegee, as described in the application instructions that came with the side-art.

SpiffMAME marquee

The above image shows the new marquee, which is also from mamemarquees.com. The image is quite dark, since I had to turn off the flash to be able to see the text on the marquee at all. I might take a new picture with a longer exposure-time in order to get it lighter, but for now this shows what the marquee on my SpiffMAME cabinet looks like. The light is provided by a fluorescent tube mounted behind the marquee. The light is quite dim, but this is actually very nice, so you are not blinded by it while playing a game. I found a new piece of tinted plexi-glass and got it cut to size, and along with a similar sized clear piece, I was able to sandwich the marquee between the two with a very nice result.

I really think the side-art and marquee makes the whole cabinet appear much more pleasing and complete. Had it not been for mamemarquees.com I would probably not have gotten arround to these visual enhancements yet.

Last updated: 2005.08.14