Nice machine! My 1993 vintage V2XT is almost in that nice of shape. My controller died shortly after I got the machine also. I had tried looking for spare parts, but decided to take the plunge and convert it. It was a bit daunting hacking all of the guts out of the entire cabinet, and converting to Mach3, but it was worth it. Cool trick about mounting the monitor - I did the same with a 15" dell LCD - pic attached.
I temporarily converted the machine to steppers (as I had them on hand) but I am now going to begin a "proper" conversion complete with Galil card and brushless servo's on all three (possibly 4) axes. My machine is only for hobby use, so it's taking a loooooong time to convert, but I have gathered all of the electronics and hope to have it completed this winter.
I have started laying out alternate control panels for surrounding the monitor, and also the jog wheel on the front of the quill. I can't decide on what buttons, and I have been running the machine with the keyboard, mouse and e-stop only for about a year.
I'll certainly keep a close eye on your project.
If you hadn't already found it, there is a V2XT group on yahoo groups.