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US Games Super Duper Casino v25.1 (SDC)

As far as my research is able to find, the Super Duper Casino counter-top arcade cabinet was originally manufactured in 1986. The system was produced by US Games, a fairly common vendor of video entertainment consoles based in Georgia. It appears that in 1988 the the computer board was upgraded. All five game ROMs were upgraded in 1991. To view a picture of the logic board click here. Some of the games on this machine include Blackjack, US Slots, 10-Game trivia, and several other entertainment games such as Reflex Tester and Chariot Race. This console sits on a lazy-susan, making it an ideal item for a bar counter. You may notice the unusual mechanism in place of the coin-op; I will explain more about this later.

Discovery

One day I was surfing through the fantastic display of humanity that is the Goodwill Outlet store, desperately searching for anything electronic that was both old and not too sticky. If you've ever been to a Goodwill Outlet, you will understand my struggle. My friend noticed this tremendously heavy metal terminal that was sitting upside down inside one of the bins of filth. I quickly rushed over to inspect. It took a few minutes to figure out what it was. It looked like a classic computer but instead of a keyboard it had buttons, like an arcade cabinet. It was missing the coin mechanism and the front panel. We were absolutely shocked to find that it worked. In fact, I haven't even had to replace any of the wedge bulbs in the buttons. Due to the extreme weight of the CRT, I convinced the cashier to consider it as a TV, and I got the whole thing for five bucks!

Fixing It Up

With very little information available on the internet, fixing this machine was a bit difficult. I disassembled it entirely just to get the cigarette soot off of everything. After gutting it I was able to remove the pins from the cam locks so they could be turned with a screwdriver. I also messed around with the two cables hanging loose in the coin-op compartment and determined which pins could be connected to trigger the machine to believe a coin had been inserted. Both are momentary pull-down circuits.
I focused and centered the CRT, cleaned and oiled the fan, and straightened a few bent panels. But most importantly I created a solution to replace the front panel and coin-op, which were missing entirely. I measured the front opening and the raster position and built a prototype in Autodesk Inventor. My highschool shop teachers very kindly allowed me to use their laser cutter to create the new parts. There were two parts to build with the laser: the wood panel with the raster hole and coin button hole, and an identical sheet of plexi-glass without the raster hole. With some black paint on the wood panel, and a matching arcade button from eBay, I had the front panel looking quite genuine. I don't like that it's not original, but I think this was certainly a better solution than throwing the machine away.

Mysteries

There still remains a few mysteries with this device. This first mystery I was able to solve. Inside the left service panel on the back, next to the service and volume buttons is a female DB-9 connector. It turns out that it's a non-standard XT-type keyboard connector. It could be used to type in customized messages.
I don't really know what the original front panel looked like. If you have any photographs of the way this machine is actually supposed to look, please send them to me. I modeled the front panel off of a similar machine, but I have no reference for the way the coin-op needs to look. I designed the front in a way that I can chop off the current front at the edge of the coin-op compartment in case I ever find one that fits.

System Specifications

My system is the 1986-style model with a 1988 logic board and a 1991 ROM set; These machines were originally produced in 1986. The only resource on this exact machine I have found is a page on the Vintage Arcade Preservation Society (VAPS) website: click here to view. I have filled out the spec table to the best of my ability.

Type/Model Super Duper Casino v25.1
S/N 03019236
Processor Motorola 6809 (Thompson EF68B09P) 8-bit CPU (2MHz)
Memory 64KB on-board RAM
Display 10 inch color CRT
Video Output 512 by 256 pixels (16-color)
Motorola 6845 (MC68B45P) CRT Controller (2MHz)
ROM Specs 1x 32KB and 4x 64KB game ROMs
Communication Interfaces 1x DB-9 keyboard connector
Storage Devices None
Software Super Duper Casino, Version 25.1
(Nearly identical to 1992 MAME package "USGAMES")
Manufacturer US Games Incorporated

Software

These are the first few screens you will see when the system is booted. The first is a quick set of diagnostics and ROM checks that occur before any of the games are loaded. Each ROM has a set of at most three games on it, and it appears like the system can run fine as long as it has at least one game ROM. This is quite the patriotic system, as the next two screens are featured regularly throughout the preview cycle.

Written By: Erik Greif
Published: 01/18/2015 20:30PST
Modified: 07/19/2015 10:59PST
Article Title: US Games Super Duper Casino (SDC)
Article URL: http://bitfracture.com/?page=techarticles/retro_usgames_sdc
Website Title: Bit Fracture Online
Website URL: http://www.bitfracture.com
Media Type: Blog Post/Personal Article
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