Build an Arcade Style DDR Pad

1 - materials and tools
2 - solid panels
3 - ddr pad base
4 - acrylic panes
5 - supports and switches
6 - wiring the ddr pad
7 - finished ddr pad

3 - Pad Base


This is a top down view of the design of the base of the pad. It was done with a CAD, so the proportions should be accurate except for the screw locations on the angle brackets.

The red shows where the 2x4s lie. Each panel is bolted straight down into the base. The angle brackets should be bolted only downward through the arrow panels.
(and yes, 2x4s are actually 1.5" x 3.5")

To go about building the base, I:
  1. Cut a 33" x 33" slab of plywood.
  2. Cut my 2x4s to 33" in length.
  3. Measure out and mark the 11" squares that will correspond to the panels.
  4. Drill pilot holes where you want to bind the 2x4s to the plywood base.
  5. Place screws from the bottom through those pilot holes just far enough that they poke through the top
  6. Place the 2x4 in the desired location on top of the screws and press it down.  Now you have markings in the 2x4 where the screws will enter the 2x4s
  7. Drill pilot holes in the 2x4s at the marks the screws made in them.
  8. Line up and screw down the 2x4s the their positions.  (make sure they are flush with the plywood)
  9. Add in 2x4 sections perpendicular to the longer lengths along the center of  the rest of the panel boundaries with the same method.
  10. You should  now have a  base where if you put 11"x11" panels on top of  it, the panels will all lie above an 11" x 11" opening with 2x4s bordering the opening.
To place the solid panels, I advance the screws in them forward to where they just poke out of the bottom.  I then align the panel where it should go and press it down.  This makes marks in the 2x4s.  I then drill pilot holes where those marks were made and finally advance the screws from the panel the rest of the way fully binding it to the base.
At this point, I have a piece of 3/4"x33"x33" plywood bolted to the 2x4s from underneath the pad. I also have some additional 2x4 in the wells for the arrow panels.  If you notice in the above picture, I did cut the vertical 2x4 supports in half (vertically) so that they don't take up as much room.
If you would like to suggest something or comment on my metal ddr pad design, please email me at