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Video Game Repair/Refurbing a Street Fighter II game


I'm interested in buying and refurbing a Street Fighter II upright arcade game. More for the hobby of something to tinker with than to have a game to play right away, otherwise I'd just buy a working game.

I'm a newbie to this and would be starting from scratch knowledge-wise.

Where do you suggest I start? Find a non-working game and just dive in? Are there some components I should expect to work even in a non-functioning game (like the monitor?) off the bat to save trouble down the line? Any web resources I should look for?

Thanks for any direction you can provide!


Gday Stan,

The problem buying a non working game unless you have some experience on working on machines it may end up costing you a whole lot more than you think.  But on the flip side it will also push you to learn a lot if you are challenged.

Your going to need general skills in electronics, wiring, some woodworking skills, problem solving skills etc.  Minimum amount of tools you need is a multimeter, screw drivers, wire stripper/Crimper, Soldering Iron.

Typically your cost breakdown from biggest/most expensive to least is as follows.  Monitor, Game Board, Power Supply, wiring, joystick, buttons, misc.

The monitor is your most dangerous piece of equipment in the machine to work with, for a newbie I would be attempting to try and steer clear of working on monitors or anything that has monitor problems.  But with modern technology monitors can now be replaced with a VGA capable Flat Screen TV or computer monitor and a converter board.  (Last New 19 inch Arcade monitor I bought cost about $400 compared to a 19 inch flat screen Monitor for $89 + a $30 converter board)

It really depends on how much you want to tinker with stuff?  Cosmetics on the outside are fairly easy, replacing buttons & joysticks anyone can do.  For a beginner project I would definitively get a machine you like, in your Case Street Fighter II.  The older the machine the harder/more complicated the machine is going to be.  Anything 90 should be okay.  I look for one that is know to work, or at least the sound works but has problems, does not matter it looks rough that can be fixed, probably something that you know the gameboard works kind of.  (If the monitor is shot again you can replace it cheaply and maybe get it for a bargain.)  I check craigslist in your area.  Be mindful that the vast majority of people that own personal arcade machines have no knowledge of how they work so if they broken it might be a 50 cent fuse that all that's wrong with it.

Good resources is has a fairly good community of hobbiests plus a lot of useful resources.  Google a manual and have a look at that before buying a machine just to see what you are getting into.

Hope this helps.


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I can answer questions on Arcade or Home Console repair or modification.


Repair, rewire, modification, rebuild, restore. (I repair numerous business and private arcade/pinball machines in my area of the state. I partner with a shop that stocks older console based systems and games, I am the one that repairs them back to working order.)

Have been building, customizing and repairing all types of arcade games since 2004. I have been repairing and modifying video games since the late 80's. (Most of my knowledge is self learnt and following others that have trailblazed in the industry.)

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