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Pinball Rehab

pinball repair and restoration

 
145 results - showing 11 - 20 « 1 2 3 4 5 6 ... 7 15 »
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Cleaning Pinball Playfield
If you look closely at your playfield your are going to see thousands of tiny scratches. The majority of those scratches were caused by improper cleaning. So when cleaning a playfield we have two goals: get the game clean plus minimize adding any more scratches (which can only be removed through polishing). The first question is what type of cleaning you're doing. If you just picked up the game and it's filthy I would completely strip the playfield and then clean, polish (if necessary) and wax (see the references for polishing and waxing). ...
 
 
Pinitech WPC Reverse Switch Tester Review
Pinitech just announced a WPC Reverse Switch Tester (see Image 1), which I was able to beta test. I can say definitively that it should be part of the toolkit for anyone who works on pinball games. This simple, inexpensive product (un-assembled $10 and assembled $15) will turn the several hour process of identifying phantom switch closures into a simple 30 minute project. If you opt for the kit it can be assembled in a few minutes as only four connectors need to be soldered onto the board. There are several switch/diode...
 
 
Pinitech 64 Switch Matrix Tester Review
In this article I will be reviewing the Pinitech 64 Switch Matrix Tester (see Image 1). The tester costs $47.50 for the kit and $90 assembled. In addition you will need a wire harness kit for different types of games (the tester will work with almost all games manufactured since 1977--more information at the link above). The un-assembled harness kits run $17.50-$18.50 and the assembled kits are $35-$36. The board is silk-screened with the switch numbering system used by Williams on system 3-11. In addition generic manufacturer charts are available for other systems...
 
 
Using a Logic Probe
One of the simplest and cheapest tools you can include in your test equipment arsenal is a logic probe. Although a lot of people seem overwhelmed by logic probes, they are actually very easy to use. In regards to their purpose, consider a logic probe as a bridge between a meter and a scope. While a meter is great for reading constant voltages (see Image 1) they fall short when a signal is pulsed (see Image 2, which is a 12 volt pulsed signal from the switch matrix). What the meter will try to...
 
 
Comet Pinball New Products
Comet Pinball (my go to led vendor) has recently added several products that are worth writing about. Art has added two led strips; a 3 led 12 volt for flasher circuits and a 6.3 volt (AC/DC) 3 or 7 led strip that comes with a variety of connectors for easy installation. See this post on Pinside to see some examples of how pinballers are using them. Also new is a high-powered spotlight (center led in image) with a wide throw that unlike many spotlights will work in numerous applications, a fluted bullet (bottom-center in...
 
 
Ultra Dust Ultrasonic Cleaner Additive
I recently tried out a new ultrasonic cleaner additive from Comet Pinball. Ultra Dust is a granular concentrate based on a formula that has been used for years in the jewelry and electronics industry. It can safely be used on pinball plastics, hardware and electronic parts. I tried out a batch recently and was extremely impressed with the results. It worked much better than Purple Power, Simple Green or any of the other degreasers I have used in the past. It works best with heated ultrasonic cleaners although you can achieve similar results...
 
 
Fixing Insert Problems
I was not happy with the peeling, fogged, and delaminating inserts on my Arabian Nights (see Image 1). Most of the inserts were looking pretty bad. Advice on the web usually mentions trying Krazy glue, Varathane, or just redoing the whole playfield with a full restoration. I was not liking those options and noticed when I wiped the playfield with alcohol, the liquid seeped into the crevasses around the insert and made them look great, until the alcohol dried up. Having work experience with UV curable resins, I tried the following method and it...
 
 
Pad and Trace Repair
When it comes to pad and trace repair the two common solutions are copper foil or jumpers. Both methods are functionally equivalent and which one you select depends on the specific situation and how original you want the board to look. One other method I should mention, since I get asked about it a lot, is liquid trace or silver conductive epoxy. Other than a few specific situations, like repairing the glass on a DMD, I stay away from them. Both solutions add some resistance to the circuit, which can sometimes cause problems,...
 
 
Repairing WPC Dot Matrix Controller
Display problems are typically the result of failing DMD's, bad ribbon cables or connectors, a cable installed one pin off (or reversed) or the high voltage section of the Dot Matrix Controller (called DMC herafter). Once you have confirmed the problem is with the Dot Matrix board (either logic or high voltage) this article will assist you with the troubleshooting process. For informational purposes I will also address some common symptoms that indicate problems other than the DMC board. You can either test the board in the game or use a test fixture...
 
 
Building a WPC Test Fixture
As my Dad would say, there are several ways to skin a cat. So while this may not be the ultimate WPC test fixture, the design was limited by a couple of my personal objectives. First I didn't want to mess with a transformer, and secondly I did not want high voltage on the bench. While this design precludes the possibility of troubleshooting DMD's or the high voltage section of dot matrix controllers, I can live with that. Most DMD problems can't be fixed anyways, and the high voltage section of the dot...
 
 
 
145 results - showing 11 - 20 « 1 2 3 4 5 6 ... 7 15 »