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Futurama : Space 3000

Features:  Multi-Ball - Radioactive Captive Ball - Integrated DVD/LCD - Rotating Slurm Can - Multi-Colored Pop Bumper - Bi-Directional Lane Guide - Headphone Jack

A work in progress

   It all started when I bought a weathered Superman Pinball Machine for the parts. When I gained access to the head I found the boards to be in good shape. I pulled the PCBs to see which ones worked and after a little fiddling and small repairs they all fired up and the displays worked fine.

   So I had a fully functioning board set with a ravaged cabinet and playfield. I decided to use the boards to make a design station to experiment with possible playfield toys and devices. The playfield is made of 3/4" Birch Plywood. This meant the height critical components had to be counter-sunk, but I thought the additional rigidity would be a bonus. At this point I had a full length blank playfield with working flippers and slings to play with. I started sorting through the wire harness and decided, in an effort to avoid trouble, an 8-letter title would be in order.  By chance one of my favorite shows "Futurama" had just that. I started buying posters, calendars, toys and anything else I thought might integrate well into a pinball machine.

   When I purchased the Futurama Space Pilot movie poster I was set. I could then determine the insert locations and component placement to conform to the art as fluid as possible. New inserts were unavailable to me at the time, so I had to salvage them from the donor game. That's when the router got a workout. The inserts got inserted and sanded. The poster went down. Then I trimmed the holes for visible inserts and installed them. I then applied nine coats of Verathane. It was needed to build up around a few added elements.

Parts Used
  • Atari - drop targets, standup targets
  • Allied - spinning disc
  • Williams - flipper and sling assemblies, saucer kickers, trough components
  • Bally - lane kicker, saucer kicker, standup targets, pop bumper
  • Capcom - ball guides

These are the only PIC's I have of the playfield in the middle of the assembly process.

   The cabinet was cut from 2 sheets of 3/4" birch plywood. The menu consisted of Rabbit's, Dado's, Biscuits and Brads with additional blocking to lock it all in. That New Yankee Norm Abram would be proud. It turned out great. I found an excellent "Resource" for the glass slides and a new supplier with a great deal on side rails. If you couldn't tell from the photos, I have not removed the protective film from the rails and the t-molding. That's why the rails are white and the chrome molding looks funny.
   For side art, I went to a party supply store and found these large rolls of vinyl and mylar with various patterns and colors. I decided on the blue flashy mylar. At first, an excellent choice. It went on easy and trimmed up nicely. When I finished I stood back and was in complete awe. From every angle the cabinet was literally visually stunning. The flashiest machine in existence. If this game was the first one loaded into a container of re-imports, it would be the first machine you would see when you opened the doors. Sadly, the stuff doesn't react well to clear coats and on a durability factor I give it a rating of 1. So I'm calling it a temporary treatment until a suitable graphic can be found or made.This Is what I imagine.

Total Build Time : 6 months

The software remained the same but some circuitry was added to the switch lines to perform certain functions and intergrate the multi-ball feature.

   It's hard to know when to say when, I have a box of items that I chose not to use trying to keep it from looking like a kids toy box. It's even harder to call it done. I still have a few other things I plan to add and a couple of features I've yet to disclose. The question was asked if I would do it again. Well, I'm already accumulating parts for titles #'s 002 & 003. I'm also researching micro-controllers with detachable programmer and the pinmane HW developments. Very interesting.

Here's a Link to a Video(Avi-2meg)
If file doesn't load/play, try (save file as)
A better clip is on the way.

So stay 'Tooned' for the next episode.

For My Own Amusement. No Affiliations.



 Evan K.
 Seattle, WA.

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