Pinball Rehab

pinball repair and restoration

Saving Backbox Warning Decal Saving Backbox Warning Decal Hot

This is the second part of my cabinet repair on a Williams Terminator 2.  The first part is covered in my Backbox Restoration article. Just to quickly bring you up to date, the game was purchased from someone who kept it in a garage and the humidity had completely trashed the backbox.

Because of the condition of the backbox warning decal I couldn't use painters tape to mask it off without peeling up chunks of the decal so I had to take a circuitous route to finish and repaint the back.  The first step was to tape off around the decal on the back (see Image 1).  You will note I didn't sand down all of the black paint on the back since it was in fairly good condition, but just smoothed it out with a sanding block and some 220 grit sandpaper.

I then sprayed a couple of coats of clear semi-gloss over the decal.  You will get a small ridge of semi-gloss paint along the edge of the painters tape.  After removing the tape, just hit it with some 0000 steel wool to smooth out the ridge.  This will remove some of the glossiness but we'll fix that later. Now I've got enough protection so that I can tape off the decal before I spray paint the back.

At this point tape off or cover any areas you want to protect, blow off any dust and wipe down the wood with a tack cloth.  Lay down three light coats of black paint and always start and stop spraying off of the wood surface.  Sand lightly between coats with a sanding block and 320 grit sandpaper and wipe with the tack cloth.

After removing the tape over the decal I again had a small ridge, this time of black paint.  Smooth out the ridge with your steel wool and then spray a coat or two of semi-gloss paint only along the line around the decal.

Image Gallery

Saving Backbox Warning Decal
Saving Backbox Warning Decal

You can see the final result in Image 2.  It looks much better when viewed straight on instead of at an angle where the light highlights the line between the decal area and the newly painted area.

Please note I did not spend as much time on the back making it perfect, it is the back after all.  Also, I should have gone with black satin instead of semi-gloss.  The clear semi-gloss I sprayed on the decal did brighten it up some, but not enough to match the semi-gloss black.