Cabinet Part 3

These directions are for the Gen 1 and 2 Cupcade kits. You probably don't have one of these unless you have a very old kit!
The case uses the “T-slot” assembly technique, with #4-40 screws and nuts. You saw one of these when joining the screen and speaker pieces.

Unlike that first slot, the remaining T-slots will be too deeply recessed to reach with fingers. Instead, we’ll use masking tape to temporarily hold each nut in place, then remove it later.
Put a piece of masking tape over each of the two T-slots on the underside of the base piece (where the Raspberry Pi is installed).
Then, from the top side, press a nut into the cross part of each “T.” Give it a pinch from both sides, so the tape gets a good hold on the nut.

Try to get the nuts roughly centered-ish in the slots.
Add tape behind the two T-slots at the top of the speaker grille, then press nuts into place.

Do the same for the two slots near the top of the screen.
And once more for the joystick support piece.

There should be 8 nuts & tape bits at this point.

Okay, the Tricky Part

Set one of the large side pieces flat on your work surface. Either one is fine…we’re using the right side here.

Hey! That wasn’t so hard. Wait for it…
Take the jumble of parts and try to (roughly) align the tabs on the speaker grille, screen and joystick supports with the corresponding holes in the side piece. They probably won’t stay in those holes for very long, but at least you’ll know where they belong.

Start to place other elements vaguely in position: Pi near the bottom, buttons near the front.

If you find your wires getting tangly again, it’s okay to disconnect and re-route them.
And so begins the interpretive dance called Sealing Up the Cupcade Case…
Pivot the screen support piece up slightly, fit the screen bezel into the slots on the speaker grille, and lower it all back into place.
Fit the joystick and button supports into their own slots as you’re working on this section. Use masking tape to hold these four pieces in alignment.

Notches along the top edge of the button support should align with tabs on the screen bezel. If not, your button piece was assembled upside-down. Remove the quick-connects, unscrew the buttons, turn the piece over and reassemble.
The trick now is to pick the whole thing up and feed these two screws through their corresponding holes in the side.

The screws don’t need to be tight…in fact a little “give” is helpful at this stage. They just need to catch the nuts that are taped in place.

Some of the acrylic parts will fight a bit and not fit into their slots. Poke a small screwdriver through the hole and try to nudge these parts the right way.

If this is a dexterity challenge or you have smaller hands: rather than installing screws from below, remove the masking tape from the prior step and try fitting the side into place from above. Once the screws catch, you can turn it over and proceed through the same steps (just reversing right and left). Another approach is to scoot the whole assemblage off the edge of the table just enough to reach the screw holes from below (one at a time).
A third screw installs from the side at the top of the speaker grille.

A fourth screw holds the Raspberry Pi base. You’ll need to stand this base piece up and fit it into the slots at the bottom edge of the side piece.

You can now remove the tape from a couple steps prior. Keep the other tape (holding nuts) in place for now.

The plastic piece holding the credit and start buttons should be hanging out the front of the case at this point. If not, move it there. It does not need to be fit into the notches yet, we’ll do that later.
Now to repeat these four fasteners on the opposite side.

Make sure all four nuts are still held in with tape. If any have fallen out, press them back into place.
Now set the other side piece on top, roughly in position. I can guarantee the tabs won’t all fit. That’s okay, we’ll align things one at a time…
Start with the base piece; this has the fewest interferences.

Get the tabs and hole aligned for this one part, then insert a screw. Do not crank it down…a loose fit is fine, just so it has a good hold on the screw.
Work your way from bottom to top, aligning the tabs closest to each hole and then inserting a screw.

You may need to nudge each piece into position using the tip of the screwdriver through the slots, or with a finger from behind (when it can fit).
All four screws in place. Victory!

You can now remove the tape that was holding the nuts in place. Some of these will be deeply recessed; you might need tweezers to reach them. If you can’t reach them, just leave them be…nobody will see them and they don’t interfere with the system.

Now gather up the other four case parts…
Friendly reminder: this is your last chance to add a USB mini WiFi adapter if you want! Plug it into the top USB slot. Leave the bottom slot open for a keyboard.

The case blocks access to the Ethernet port; WiFi is the only networking option.

Without WiFi, you can still load games into the system by inserting the SD card into a USB reader on your computer and moving ROM files to the /boot/advmame/rom folder.
This guide was first published on Apr 04, 2014. It was last updated on Apr 04, 2014. This page (Cabinet Part 3) was last updated on Jul 15, 2019.