Mini Virtual Pinball

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Project by Darren posted 02-23-2016 03:01 AM 1239 views 15 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a project I started this winter, a co-worker had built one and it sparked my interest. It’s a virtual pinball cabinet, which uses a 27” monitor for the play field and a 17” monitor in the back box. Overall size is about 16”W x 30”D x 60”H, play table height is about 38” high.

The cabinet body is maple ply, trimmed with cherry. I purchased several actual pinball cabinet parts, such as the legs, back box hinges, and some light lenses. I wrote my own controller using ardunio based Teensy 2.0, which will emulate keyboard and joystick commands. I also programmed it to keep track of coin door credits so that one insert coins even when not in a game and just have to push start when a game starts.

Most of the work was done using regular woodworking machines, but a few items I used my CNC for, such as the name plate, speaker holes, and lighting lens cut-outs.

All of the project pics can be found here#.

Here are a couple of you tube videos, an overview

One of some recent lighting additions, a set of LEDs that light up when the ball needs launched, and the flashers on the back of the play field that light up when bumpers and kickers are hit by the ball.

-- Darren, KCMO,

12 comments so far

View Rick M.'s profile

Rick M.

7692 posts in 1798 days

#1 posted 02-23-2016 06:04 AM

View HokieKen's profile


1519 posts in 557 days

#2 posted 02-23-2016 01:37 PM

That’s just awesome.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View oldnovice's profile


5648 posts in 2786 days

#3 posted 02-23-2016 04:54 PM

A really unique and very nice project!

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View chrisstef's profile


15457 posts in 2425 days

#4 posted 02-23-2016 05:00 PM

Very very awesome! Id looove one of these with the Addams Family loaded on to it. Ive been chasing that pin for 15 years and still haven’t found one that I can afford.

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View ravensrock's profile


328 posts in 1061 days

#5 posted 02-23-2016 05:50 PM

Now this is a cool project! Would look great next to my brother’s KISS pinball machine!

-- Dave, York, PA, WildSide Woodworking

View fivecodys's profile


566 posts in 1054 days

#6 posted 02-23-2016 05:54 PM

Very cool project.
Thanks for sharing.

-- Chem, Central California

View MrFid's profile


791 posts in 1323 days

#7 posted 02-23-2016 06:12 PM

Wow super project. Favorited for sure. I have a real pinball table, but this looks amazing as a second machine someday.

-- Bailey F - Eastern Mass.

View Darren's profile


34 posts in 1745 days

#8 posted 02-23-2016 07:21 PM

Thanks for all the great comments, it has been a fun project, addictive too!

I got a lot of great info from this site: which covered a lot of questions I had, but there are lots of virtual pinball forums to search, and there are thousands of tables to download for free that folks have recreated original tables to exact details.

Currently I have about 230 tables (including Addams Family). I’d love to make a full sized one eventually, but this one is just about right for the space we have for it.

Most of the software can be played on a desktop also, so check out the page above and give a few a try. I did find that you’ll want at least a duo core processor, 4 gb of ram, and a graphics card. Best if you have a dedicated pc as you’ll need to run all the software as full administrator rights to get them to run correctly and in xp sp3 compatibility mode as most of the software is out of current development.

I’ll do my best to answer questions if anyone has any…Thanks again!

-- Darren, KCMO,

View bobasaurus's profile


2587 posts in 2602 days

#9 posted 02-23-2016 08:17 PM

That is extremely nice, I would love to build one someday. Favorited for later.

-- Allen, Colorado

View majuvla's profile


8685 posts in 2286 days

#10 posted 02-24-2016 07:05 AM

Incredible project. Who wouldn’t want to have it in his room or garage.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View RadioActiveRich's profile


68 posts in 935 days

#11 posted 02-24-2016 03:24 PM

Love it! I’ve been collecting parts for an actual pinball machine for a while now. I love your cabinet, especially the way you kept it looking so natural. Beautifully done.

View Darren's profile


34 posts in 1745 days

#12 posted 02-26-2016 02:51 AM

Thanks, was going for an art-deco, wood rail look. I’ve also bought a couple of plungers from 30’s and 40’s Gottlieb tables that are art deco to try and incorporate.

-- Darren, KCMO,

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