Thanks so much for the feedback Pb and FH13! It was a total blast to build and it's been really fun playing arcade games too!
Pb, I took a look at your buddy's amp design and I love it, it's a really refreshing design. I especially liked the more functional aspects it incorporates like the seat on top and rolling wheels. You can tell he's well aware of the amp owners struggles. It would be cool to play with the form of an arcade machine like you suggest to reinterpret it. For this build I was pressed for time (using my Dad's workshop while I was home for the holidays) and wanted to settle on a simple design I could complete in 1 week.
FH13, you're exactly right about me building it from materials I already. I also made material choices based on cost, weight, and tools that were available to me at the time. Looking at the final result, it definitely didn't match the round, more friendly design from my initial sketches. The main reason for that is that while I was building it, I realized that following that design would require more time and more complex finishing techniques needed to achieve that look. Overall I made the decision to keep the white parts simple and angular since those edges don't end up coming in contact with the player.
Here a rough cost breakdown:
"Materials Used" $100
Used 4:3 LCD monitor $75
Old laptop $0 (you can use a new Raspberry Pi computer which would be around $40)
Cannibalized PC Speakers $0
Power cord and mounting accessories $15
Arcade buttons, joysticks, usb controller $130
"Curves" book to act as a clamp $priceless
Total, about $300 not counting about 40 hrs of blood, sweat, and, paint fumes