(Topic ID: 2167)

1974 Williams Star Pool Backglass lights intermittently working.

By Toughgirl

11 years ago


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  • 11 posts
  • 5 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 9 years ago by pops21
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#1 11 years ago

Having an issue with the backglass lights on our Star Pool machine. Seemed ok for a few days after we bought it, then we changed all the burned out bulbs behind the backglass (with #47 bulbs) and we replaced the 5 bulbs behind the game title with #455 flashers. Also changed lots of playfield lights, everything worked fine. Later when I turn the machine on, the backglass is dark. Everything works and the playfield lights are fine, scores work fine, etc. I played it and got a free game (knocker banged) and the lights came back on! I was relieved to say the least. Turned the machine on and off several times, everything was fine. Then today I turned it on, no backglass lighting again!!
Could those 455 flashing bulbs be the cause of this? And has anybody come across a problem like this before? I'm a total newb, but I have done some electronics work before. Any help would be awesome as I'm just about ready to cry over this

#2 11 years ago

Ok, after an hour of leaving it on, the lights came back on. Didn't get any free games or anything, they just decided to work again (flashers and all). It would seem like once the machine warmed up they came on, but now I'm more confused than before. The game is in my house which is well heated. Again, any ideas would be great, doesn't seem like a major problem, just an aggravating one (which I guess they all are).

#3 11 years ago

I dont think it's the 455s.
I use 455s in my EMs and never had any bad luck,
try rocking the wire connector in the backbox should be 8-12 pin plug just as an example .
When you brought it home I assume you had it in two sections?
the backbox and the cabinet and then reconnected everything .
- sometimes problems come up when you move or set up an old machine, the aluminum pins can corrode/ tarnish and when re - inserted never match up exactly and work like they did before.
I would try cleaning all the 'Jones type plugs' and see if it helps before digging any further

#4 11 years ago

I'll do that. When the problem started I pulled all the connectors back out and reinserted them, but it didn't help. But tomorrow I'm going to take them all back out and clean each and every pin to see if that helps. I was thinking of using some 600-800 grit sandpaper and just shining them up, unless there is a better option.

#5 11 years ago

that should be fine I use 330,
what ever it takes to clean the pins - the hard part is getting the other side done.
if you think about it the round pin only makes contact in 4 places 90* apart in a square hole.

oh another place to look is the fuse holder for the lighting you can add some pressure to the clip part when your star pool acts up again and see if that helps.
I dont know how many times I've wasted hours looking all over a pin when a bad - fuse holder was the culprit - good luck

#6 11 years ago

Almost likely a loose connection specially since they came on after knocker vibration. Check your wiring and connectors. and wires going ito the connectors as well as solider joints. Including the ones on the fuse holders.

#7 11 years ago

I think the knocker was just a coincidence now. Since it did the same thing today without being played. Obviously it's a loose connection somewhere, but I wasn't sure about the flashing bulbs. I researched them before putting them in my machine, but I wasn't sure. This is really new for me and it's overwhelming at first (like everything) but as time goes on I'll start figuring things out I'm going to clean everything well tomorrow, and I'll check all the fuses and their holders, I'll scuff them a little as well if they look even slightly oxidized
And I appreciate your help guys, it's nice to have this forum and all of you that help. Think about the first machine you owned and how it looked like 100 miles of spaghetti under the playfield! Won't be long till I can talk the talk! I hope so at least because I have several other 60-70's EM machines that I want to restore when these are done!

#8 11 years ago

Check the fuse holder itself while your checking the wires, pretty common for those to go bad with age.

#9 11 years ago

Well, one of you guys were right! Couldn't tell you which one since I did all of the suggestions. But whatever, she's running 100% now
First I did the fuse holder, pulled them all out and straightened the clasps. Someone had already replaced it before I owned it because it was too new looking. Anyway, it looks perfect now. Now for the plugs in the head unit! First off, that was a pain in the ass! The pins were indeed oxidized. I did the smallest one first with sandpaper, which was ponderous. It took a good 20 minutes to get them all shiny. So I came up with a way to do them fast and perfectly. I used a motorized manicure tool. It looks and acts like a dremel tool, but is battery powered and it's much weaker. It was made to shine finger nails so I knew it wouldn't harm metal. Each pin only takes 10 seconds to get new looking, where sanding takes a good minute or so, if your a perfectionist like me. This tool can be purchased just about anywhere that sells nail polish. I think I paid $10 for it, at best. And it comes with around 8 bits of different sizes. Just a little girl-tech fyi
Anyway, I'm super happy now!! Thanks guys!!

#10 11 years ago

glad to see you fixed it ,
Most of the time it's not hard but time consuming - good luck with that Star Pool
wax the playfield and add a new ball you should be good to go

2 years later
#11 9 years ago

If it happens again ck relay That was my issue dirty contacts

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