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I have descended to trashpicking

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    I have descended to trashpicking

    We went to the e-recycler to drop off a photocopier today and discovered this arcade machine sitting in the bin. My wife mentioned how my daughter was looking to make her room 80s arcade-themed and opened the door to my grabbing it, which I did with great haste, since we also had a Home Depot rental van instead of our little Toyotas and could actually take it.

    Overall apart from being dirty it doesn't look too bad. I'm hoping my 'skills' at fixing vintage computer gear will be applicable here.

    Can't find much info on the company. There is a metal plate above the PCBs that says Scramble.. seems like a cool game if that's what it is. I figure if the tube is good that alone with the cabinet probably make for a decent freebie.

    Hard to tell with all of the dirt, but it looks like it has a JAMMA harness, so the cabinet could be adapted to play other arcade boards. Or you could get a JAMMA to PC board and shove a small PC in there to emulate basically anything. The limited button set would be an issue though unless you modified it to add more input buttons.

    With the inspection date of May 27th 1982 in the cabinet, this is probably the game you have:

    Jesus christ are the sounds of the game annoying. It looks fun, but I'd definitely turn the sound off.

    Before powering it up, I'd definitely completely recap the CRT's analog board, it looks like at least one of them has leaked, and the rest are probably not in great condition. Being almost 40 years old next to a hot vacuum tube all of their lives with no ventilation.

    I would be VERY surprised if the CRT didn't have any burn-in on it. Almost all arcade games never had a screensaver and various elements would be burned in, like the score counter and "insert coin".
    Last edited by GiGaBiTe; May 14, 2021, 07:49 PM.


      Good find! I've gutted a few of those over the years to convert to MAME boxes. A flat panel LCD screen, a Pentium II or III running a DOS MAME font-end, and a few quarters.

      Of course, the ones I gutted were far beyond repair. If you plan to fix this and get it running make sure to post videos when complete. Scramble was an awesome game that I plunked plenty of quarters into at the local arcade when I was a kid. I wish arcades were still a thing.

      Here's a Scramble bezel sticker that might fit:


        Oh , and marquee:

        Sorry this is not in the post above, I don't dare edit for third time. Might get marked as a spammer.


          So lucky to get that. I really hope you can clean it up and get it going.

          I see roms in one of the photos. Can you dump them? I might be able to find a match in MAME which will give you the maker's name and other details.


            Nice, I would have grabbed it as well if I was in your shoes. I always wanted to restore an arcade cabinet (doubt Id keep it because of the room).


              Hmm. I don't remember Scramble at all.. I went to a fair number of arcades back in the day. But probably I just missed it because I was so obsessed with any sort of driving games or Pacman related stuff. I can't wait to try it out, if that's what it is. It looks like a lot of fun.

              I feel like this cabinet must be JAMMA.. I would bet Coastal Games was a licenced vendor that basically offered these units to non arcade venues like restaurants etc.. I seem to remember some waiting areas having machines like these beside the cigarette machines (remember those? Lol). Probably they had some kind of service arrangement to change the games up every now and then.

              I really hope the monitor is still good. Although to recap the board will require me getting over my intense fear of CRTs.. 8bitguy and Adrian make working on them look so safe and easy...
              Last edited by falter; May 15, 2021, 05:21 PM.


                There is nothing wrong with trash picking, until the guy watching you through the window picks up the phone.
                [Need something to waste time on? Click here to visit my YouTube channel CelGenStudios]
                [No time for videos? Click here to visit my Twitter feed @CelGenStudios]

                = Excellent space heater


                  This is waaaaay too early for Jamma. But it's very easy to figure out the pinouts on the connectors since the game is still connected to the harness.
                  You can find help getting this up and running at

                  Easiest way to ID that board is to grab one of the eproms off of it, read it in and run a romident on it.


                  Good luck. I've been collecting and repairing arcade games for 25 years or so. It's a bad knock off, but might restore into something nice.


                    It looks like a Japanese made Tehkan "Lava" cabinet (also existed in Namco flavors) but seemingly OEMed for Coastal Games, Ltd. Pretty cool!
                    Attached Files


                      Inspection sticker says 1982. I wonder what Game(s) it plays.


                        I've ordered replacement caps for the monitor board.. however in the interim I was thinking about firing this thing up just to check out the power supplies for the PCBs. I don't see any obviously leaking caps on the monitor board but there is this cylinder thing that kind of reminds me of a penny roll.. it looks a little rough.. anyone know what this is (near bottom right):


                        Am I risking fire etc trying to power it up as is?


                          The thing with 3PO on the top? I'd say it's a coil with a 3P capacitor attached. You could use a brush and gently clean all of that dust out of there - that would reduce the fire risk.


                            I'd just pull the board out and hose it off and let it dry in the sun.


                              So I cleaned up the board and then fired up without the arcade PCBs connected to test power from the PSU - all came up good, getting good +12v, +5 and -5V. So I connected the PCBs and fired up. The game itself (Scramble) seems to be working just fine as you can see in this video. It looks like the monitor is suffering from some kind of partial collapse. Maybe caps?