Updates are going to start coming a little bit more frequently at this point. I have about two months and a week to finish this project up. It is definitely going to be a sprint to the end.
At this point, all of the overlays have been ordered. The last group includes front cabinet art, backglass art, and playfield art. Since the playfield art will be easily seen in all the videos I’m going to do, I’m not trying to hide it. Joe came through and finished the playfield art, and it was ordered early last week.
I ended up using the wet method to install the overlays on the cabinet. It is exceedingly forgiving, and it worked out perfectly. This is the link that I used as a reference:
One thing that I learned is that the overlay shows all the imperfections on the surface. I used a foam brush to apply the paint and the polycrylic overcoat. This meant that there were brush strokes because both the paint and the overcoat are rather thick. I assumed that the vinyl overlay would be thick enough that none of the imperfections should show through. It turns out, that I can definitely see the vinyl conforming to the brush strokes, so that the sides of the cabinet would not be flat enough for the playfield. Luckily the art contains planks of wood, and it simply looks like wood grain, but it was a good test case to really understand how smooth the paint needs to be. If I had to do it over again, I would sand much more aggressively between coats, and I’m starting to think the only way to get a truly good flat coat is to use a paint sprayer or spray cans.
So when we last left the playfield it was clearcoated, but I realized that I needed a white base coat so that the art would pop. Yesterday I spent the time to mask all of the inserts, and block all the holes in the playfield. I’m going to use two coats of Kilz primer to change the playfield to white. Then I’ll remove the tape over the inserts and spray a layer of polycrylic. After sanding that flat, I’ll be ready to install the overlay on the playfield. The art should get here in week or two, and I should be ready for it as soon as it arrives. To mask off all the inserts, I backlit the playfield with a 100W lightbulb again, and put painters tape over each overlay. I then used an xacto knife to cut the tape around the inserts. Here’s a picture of the playfield with inserts masked, holes covered, and the places that I want the wood to show through masked off.
Before masking off the playfield, I took the last template that I made and marked every single hole on the playfield. This should enable me to easily find all the holes after the overlay is installed. (Here’s a quick picture of all the holes marked in the correct positions.)
Finally, here is a low resolution picture of the playfield art: