söndag 7 maj 2017


This is another game I did in the workshop during the winter. It came in for cleaning of the playfield and new rubbers and a non-working upper right flipper. The non-working flipper was suspected to be due to a loose cable but instead it turned out to be the EOS switch, bad connection and therefore no current through the high-power winding of the flipper coil. The EOS switch is the right one in the picture below. The left switch turns of the light under the lower flipper once the flippers are actuated. It turned out to be a bit tricky to find a replacement for the switch but at the end I found one at a dealer in Holland.  And since the right one was bad I also bought and replaced the left one.

Next thing of the todo list was the drop target unit. It had a target that didn’t reset properly. This table had been glued together at some point in time and the return spring had eaten its way through the glue used to repair the loop where the spring was hooked to the target, so a new target was needed. Another of the targets had a quite badly worn printing so also this one was replaced with a new one. Working with this unit while it is still in the playfield is almost impossible but luckily it’s easy to unplug it and take it out.
The speaker had been replaced in the game and connected by screw terminals. I just couldn’t leave it like this and made a proper connection of the cables.
I had some problem with a playfield lamp that most of the time didn’t work and this was caused by an unsoldered ground wire. This problem has been in the game since it was produced, interesting that no one had found and fixed the problem earlier.

The rest of the cleaning and re rubbering was made in a hurry during a couple of evenings due to the owner had a trip booked past my part of the country and had the possibility to pick-up the game. And of some reason I didn’t take any photos of the finished game. But the playfield was cleaned and reassembled, the coin door was disassembled and polished and the shooter polished and the shooters barrel spring replaced.  

lördag 22 april 2017

Dolly Parton

It’s quite some time since I wrote something at the blog. It doesn’t mean that I haven’t done anything, just that haven’t had enough time for everything I want to do. Beside repairing and restoring pinballs I have also started horse riding and spend quite some time in the stables during the weeks. Yes stables, I ended up joining two riding schools and a private stable with Icelandic horses and I really enjoy the riding and the time spent with the horses.

I have made quite a lot of onsite repairs during the autumn and winter, about 15 pinballs and a few juke boxes and one of the last repair done in the workshop was a Bally Dolly Parton. This machine was more or less already restored. The playfield was cleaned and new rubbers mounted. It also had a new CPU board mounted but the previous repairer didn’t get the machine to run with the new CPU. When powering up the machine it displayed numbers at the player displays and a bright 0 at the credit display but nothing else happened. The cause of the problem was the cabinet switch matrix connector, J3. The CPU did actually boot properly but it wasn’t possible to add credits trough the coin switches and the start and service switch didn’t work. Repining the connector solved the problem and it was then possible to start a game.

The bright 0 at the credit display was due to a faulty resistor at the displays PCB, there are six 100K resistors at the display board and all six of them should be replaced with ½ w resistors, with a bit of distance from the board.

While working with the cabinet switch matrix I noticed that someone had disconnected the tilt pendulum and roll cage tilt, also the slam tilt switch at the playfield and coin door was disconnected, these was reconnected again.

I was asked to replace the three German coin mechs with a Swedish one while having the game at the workshop. The coin door also needed a bit of restauration so I took it out and disassembled it for cleaning and polish the bits and pieces.  

 And then after some minor wood work and just a little cleaning some playfield parts the game was ready to be picked up.

onsdag 29 juni 2016

Sharkey’s shootout

This machine has been sitting in the workshop for a long time, like a patient friend waiting for its turn. And finally, it was its turn to be taken care of. The reason for being set aside was that the CPU was ruined beyond repair by battery leakage while the game was in storage. When I first got it there was no replacement CPU’s to find anywhere but a little while ago Todd at TNT mentioned in one of his videos that Stern had produced a batch of new CPU’s and K’s arcade had one to sell. It was delivered with the latest software for the game and most important, an external battery holder.
But first thing first, the reason for being put in to storage was that it broke down and smelled burnt. The problem was easy to spot at the little auxiliary transistor board at the left side in the back box. One transistor had exploded and one was shorted. These transistor controls the pop-up posts in the outlanes and the center post between the flippers. The center post coil was shorted and also one of the outlane post coils was shorted as well. I didn’t expect two coils to be shorted at the same time when feed through the same fuse.  Maybe the coil connected to the exploded transistor shorted first then a new fuse was applied and later also the second transistor and coil shorted, I do not know for sure. But it doesn’t matter, two new transistors and two new coils and this part was fine again.
Next step was to install the new CPU and fire up the machine and this didn’t go as smooth as I hoped. I got some odd text message at the display which went black after a couple of seconds and the singe drop target in the right orbit jumped up and down continuously.  Expecting the worst, faulty CPU, I started fault finding but it turned out to be not as bad as I first thought. The display problem was due to battery leakage that had dropped from the CPU down to the ribbon cable connector at the DMD driver board and the jumping drop target was due to the coil stop for the reset coil was missing. So the CPU tried to raise the target but it didn’t manage all the way up and it fell down and the reset cycle started again. I found the coil stop in the bottom of the cabinet but the threads for the screws to hold it was dammaged and I had to mount it using slightly longer screws and lock nuts.

Once these two problems were fixed the game booted properly and worked fine. The only remaining electrical problem was a blown GI fuse which was caused by a short at the back side of the cabinet light board.

Then it was time to disassemble the playfield for cleaning and new rubbers.

Once the playfield was disassembled it was carefully cleaned and it got two coats of wax while it was easy to reach all areas.  There was a couple of wear spots above the two upper pop bumpers. At the left one the wear was in a black area so I touched it up and protected the area with a mylar patch. The wear at the right bumper was in a yellow area and I do not think that I would be able to mix the paint and make it look better than what it is now so I just protected it with a mylar patch to stop it from getting worse.

All visible screws and nuts was hand polished during the reassembly process and all other parts cleaned and polished. The drop targets got new decals and the bumpers were rebuilt with new skirts and bodies. Also the flippers were rebuilt with new sleeves, links and bats.

One remaining problem at the playfield was the wear by the VUK hole. I tried to find a Cliffy protector to cover it but it was nowhere to be found. I have seen pictures of Sharkey's with protectors and some web stores lists it, so it does exist,  but none of the stores had it in stock.  Instead I touched up the wear and protected it with mylar.
Once reassembled it became a very nice looking playfield.

The last thing to do was cleaning the cabinet inside and out, removing the lock bar brackets at the front and give the shooter a new barrel spring. I also gave the game a matching keyring.