(Topic ID: 233757)

1977 Star Explorer Restoration


By vestaviascott

2 years ago

Topic Heartbeat


Topic Stats

  • 62 posts
  • 10 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 5 months ago by KenLayton
  • Topic is favorited by 8 Pinsiders

You

Linked Games

No games have been linked to this topic.

    Topic Gallery

    View topic image gallery

    B15257BA-567C-4BC8-8650-4FA2276A0630 (resized).jpeg
    F1324F2C-8718-452F-845B-2817096EBAE6 (resized).jpeg
    pasted_image (resized).png
    pasted_image (resized).png
    electronic-parts (resized).jpg
    IMG-2242 (resized).JPG
    Screen Shot 2019-01-15 at 7.21.40 PM (resized).png
    IMG-2295 (resized).JPG
    IMG-2296 (resized).JPG
    IMG-2264 (resized).JPG
    IMG-2265 (resized).JPG
    IMG-2264 (resized).JPG
    IMG-2263 (resized).JPG
    IMG-2262 (resized).JPG
    IMG-2261 (resized).JPG
    IMG-2259 (resized).JPG

    There are 62 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
    #1 2 years ago

    I just picked up a Star Explorer "home" pinball machine at thrift store. Got it way cheap. It powers on and lights up. However, there are some issues:

    1) The left flipper solenoid had come apart and the spring was laying in the cabinet. I put it back together but still need to get a set screw to keep the flipper from slipping under load.

    2) When powered on, the siren starts immediately and will not stop.

    3) The button on the front of the machine has no effect.

    4) The flipper buttons do not activate the flippers.

    Pics follow: First pic is a stock photo of the machine. 2-3 pics are the underside of the playfield. 4th pic is showing the left flipper solenoid that I had to reassemble. Last pic shows some push buttons on the back of the machine. The left red push button makes the siren sound stop when pressed in and held. The middle switch toggles the lights on/off. The last switch operates the bonus solenoid just in front of the flippers.

    Really need to know if anyone is familiar with this machine can help me get started with figuring out how to get it working again.

    1267661425 (resized).jpgIMG-2240 (resized).JPGIMG-2241 (resized).JPGIMG-2242 (resized).JPGIMG-2243 (resized).JPG
    #2 2 years ago

    Maybe a pic of the curcuit board may help?

    #3 2 years ago

    Reseat all connectors and boards in the backbox. If that doesn't help then you've got electronics problems. Possibly that "push-to-reset" circuit breaker is bad. If so, you can replace it with a 2.5 amp slo-blo fuse and fuseholder. If that doesn't fix it, then test bridge rectifier BR402. If that's ok, then test/replace integrated circuit IC101.

    Be sure to read everything here:

    http://www.pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=Sentinel_/_Wonder_Wizard

    #4 2 years ago
    Quoted from KenLayton:

    Reseat all connectors and boards in the backbox.

    Wow, these boards are locked down tight. I can't really move any of them. I took the top off for better access but I'm afraid I'm going to crack something with the force I'm having to exert.

    Quoted from KenLayton:

    If that doesn't help then you've got electronics problems. Possibly that "push-to-reset" circuit breaker is bad. If so, you can replace it with a 2.5 amp slo-blo fuse and fuseholder.

    OK, I think that's where I'll start. The siren is on the first circuit breaker (left when viewing from behind). That switch feels different from the other two. I can make it stop the siren by holding it all the way in, but it feels spongy and I have to hold it just right to keep the siren turned off. The second switch appears to control the lights. The machine goes dark when its depressed. The third switch appears to operate the bonus solenoid. That's all that kicks when I depress it. I believe that bonus hole also triggers the siren during gameplay.

    Quoted from KenLayton:

    If that doesn't fix it, then test bridge rectifier BR402. If that's ok, then test/replace integrated circuit IC101.
    Be sure to read everything here:
    http://www.pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=Sentinel_/_Wonder_Wizard

    Thanks. Will do. I'll post some additional pics showing circuit board sans top

    #5 2 years ago

    Couple more notes. When I first turn the machine on, the scoreboard shows like 15,000 points. When I press the game start button, it resets to 00. So, that atleast appears to be functioning. So, the main things currently I'm trying to resolve are (1) Stop the siren - think that circuit breaker will be first to be replaced to do that and (2) Figure out why the flipper switches don't work.

    #6 2 years ago

    Here are the pics of the circuit boards:

    IMG-2252 (resized).JPGIMG-2253 (resized).JPGIMG-2254 (resized).JPGIMG-2257 (resized).JPGIMG-2259 (resized).JPGIMG-2260 (resized).JPGIMG-2261 (resized).JPGIMG-2262 (resized).JPGIMG-2263 (resized).JPGIMG-2264 (resized).JPGIMG-2265 (resized).JPG
    #7 2 years ago

    Please confirm...

    IMG-2264 (resized).JPG
    #8 2 years ago

    Couple more notes. The score on the machine when its turned on is 15,050 (or 150000, can't really tell if the 3rd digit is a comma or a broken zero).

    After pressing game start button, the score resets to 00. Each time the left breaker switch is pushed, the score increases by 100 points. The siren remains constant throughout.

    Depressing the ball lock spring in the center of the playfield produces a second noise.

    The third switch just trips a single solenoid (the one mentioned above, the ball lock hole). Based on the info from pinwiki:

    Circuit breakers and power switch are on back of machine. The 2.1 amp breaker controls BR401 (coils). One 2.5 amp breaker controls BR402 (game logic, displays, sounds). The other 2.5 amp breaker controls the 6.3 volts AC for the general illumination bulbs.

    It appears that BR401 is the one that's resetting that single coil. Shouldn't it reset ALL coils? If so, does that mean I have bad coils or bad coil transistors perhaps?

    #9 2 years ago

    Thanks for posting this thread ...have one in their garage and this will be very helpful

    #10 2 years ago
    Quoted from transprtr4u:

    Thanks for posting this thread ...have one in their garage and this will be very helpful

    Great. Maybe we can both learn. So far, everyone locally I've asked basically has responded "That's a toy. I wouldn't touch it".

    #11 2 years ago

    So, reseating the boards I suppose, is my first step. Should I try to clean the contacts once I have the boards pulled? If I didn't know any better, I'd think they were glued in. These bidges do not want to budge.

    #12 2 years ago
    Quoted from KenLayton:

    Reseat all connectors and boards in the backbox. If that doesn't help then you've got electronics problems. Possibly that "push-to-reset" circuit breaker is bad. If so, you can replace it with a 2.5 amp slo-blo fuse and fuseholder. If that doesn't fix it, then test bridge rectifier BR402. If that's ok, then test/replace integrated circuit IC101.
    Be sure to read everything here:
    http://www.pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=Sentinel_/_Wonder_Wizard

    Ken, really appreciate the help you've given on this machine. I've seen several threads now where you've offered helpful insights and info. Do you have one of these machines yourself?

    You mention "That" circuit breaker. There are 3. The last one (farthest right) appears to operate at least one solenoid - at least when I depress it, my "Bonus Score" solenoid trips. Is that the one you are suggesting to change to a slo-blow fuse?

    #13 2 years ago

    Change all three of those crappy circuit breakers with fuseholders and use 2.5 amp slo blo fuses in each one.

    #14 2 years ago

    Best of luck. Had one of these as a kid; brings back so many memories. I’d love to find one in the Dallas area for sale

    #15 2 years ago
    Quoted from KenLayton:

    Change all three of those crappy circuit breakers with fuseholders and use 2.5 amp slo blo fuses in each one.

    Thanks for clarifying that. Will do and report back for next steps.

    #16 2 years ago

    Ken, I see several references on the pinwiki guide to IC201, but no references to IC101. Where is it located and what does it control?

    http://www.pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=Sentinel_/_Wonder_Wizard

    #17 2 years ago

    While I'm waiting for fuses and holders to come in, I pulled the solenoid board to check the transistors. Not sure if it matters but visually, 309 and 303 metal tabs look heavily charred.

    Resistance measures are below:

    309 left+ to right- = 11.9
    309 left+ to middle- = 11.9

    307 left+ to right- = 5.8
    307 left+ to middle- = 4.1

    305 left+ to right- = 7.6
    305 left+ to middle- = 1.2

    303 left+ to right- = 9.3
    303 left+ to middle- = 9.0

    301 left+ to right- = 5.8
    301 left+ to middle- = 4.8

    IMG-2295 (resized).JPGIMG-2296 (resized).JPG
    #18 2 years ago

    Looks like common metal tarnishing to me. All of those transistors are the solenoid drivers.

    #19 2 years ago
    Quoted from KenLayton:

    Looks like common metal tarnishing to me. All of those transistors are the solenoid drivers.

    Thanks Ken, so no worries on the transistors, at least based on how they look? It just seemed strange to me that the others are pretty clean by comparison to these two.

    #20 2 years ago

    You can test those transistors. I did a Flying Aces a couple yrs back as a learner for soldering and testing basic circuit board parts. I ended up replacing the flipper transistors drivers and pre drivers. Also changed 3 or 4 of the IC chips. Got it up and running a 100% and my buddy gave me a hundo for it which is what I had in it.
    I also replaced the bridge rectifiers and did the same with the fuse holders. I wish I could remember all that was wrong with it when I started. Trying to look back and find the thread.

    #21 2 years ago

    I think I have some IC chips left over. I will check tonight. If you need them! My pop bumpers were also not working and the IC chip fixed that problem.

    #22 2 years ago
    Quoted from heni1977:

    You can test those transistors. I did a Flying Aces a couple yrs back as a learner for soldering and testing basic circuit board parts. I ended up replacing the flipper transistors drivers and pre drivers. Also changed 3 or 4 of the IC chips. Got it up and running a 100% and my buddy gave me a hundo for it which is what I had in it.
    I also replaced the bridge rectifiers and did the same with the fuse holders. I wish I could remember all that was wrong with it when I started. Trying to look back and find the thread.

    Thanks! I tested the transistors in circuit and got readings on all of them. I think I'm going to replace all of them and the little ones in front of them too. They are too small for me to get readings on. And the two bridge rectifiers. And the diodes on all the coils. Just to get some practice if nothing else.

    #23 2 years ago

    Nice! It's a great little pin to start out doing those kinda things with. I learned a lot from that little HUO pin. And KenLayton was a big help as well!!!

    #24 2 years ago
    Quoted from Dallas_Pin:

    Best of luck. Had one of these as a kid; brings back so many memories. I’d love to find one in the Dallas area for sale

    Me too Dallas. My brother and I bought it brand new for about $ 200 (lots of money when we were making $5/week delivering newspapers at the age of 12).

    We loved it and my Dad modified the flippers with a separate bracket and coil so they would work "normally". It lived in my bedroom next to my bed

    Dave

    #25 2 years ago

    FYI, Here's my order from digikey.com for the board work:

    Screen Shot 2019-01-15 at 7.21.40 PM (resized).png
    #26 2 years ago

    Anyone know the size for the set screws holding the flipper axles to the solenoid assembly? Also, fine thread or course? Missing from both my flippers. Looks course from what I can tell but I'm not sure about the size to replace them with.

    IMG-2242 (resized).JPG

    #27 2 years ago
    Quoted from vestaviascott:

    Anyone know the size for the set screws holding the flipper axles to the solenoid assembly? Also, fine thread or course (looks course from what I can tell)? Set screws missing from both my flippers.
    [quoted image]

    #28 2 years ago

    Bally used 1/4-28 (fine) threads (headless set screws) on their flipper pawls. I would assume that is what is used on your machine.

    #29 2 years ago

    Digikey has some real quick shipping! All my components arrived today. They even sent me a double order of diodes. I ordered 5, and got 10.

    electronic-parts (resized).jpg
    1 year later
    #30 7 months ago

    Did you get this fixed? I have the exact same machine. Everything works but the flippers and bumpers. Powers on calculates score etc. I cleaned all the coils but it made no difference at all.

    #31 7 months ago

    And I have had this machine since 1978 when Santa brought it. Lol

    #32 6 months ago

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/flying-aces-pinball-by-sentinal
    This might help a little.
    Never mind wrong one.

    #33 6 months ago

    The hard to find score display chips shown simply as 4433 chips on the schematic are actually type SCL4433ABE for everyone's information.

    #34 6 months ago

    I know changed all the transistors small and large. Or pre drivers and drivers is the term used. Then the bridge rectifiers and finally it came down to the interconnect chip being bad. Can't remember for sure which one runs your solenoids.

    #35 6 months ago

    KenLayton was there even a diagram available for this pin?

    #37 6 months ago

    I will check this evening I might still have a couple of those interconnect chips in the tool box.

    #38 6 months ago
    Quoted from vestaviascott:

    Ken, I see several references on the pinwiki guide to IC201, but no references to IC101. Where is it located and what does it control?
    http://www.pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=Sentinel_/_Wonder_Wizard

    IC101 is on the display board. It controls the 1s and 10s digits and scoring. It is a type CD4093.

    IC201 is the sound tones generator on the sound board. It is a type LM324.

    #39 6 months ago

    Hello, I understand that this thread was created a year ago. Maybe there is some help out there. I wish to unseat my audio board to fix some rollover/bonus slot scoring problems (it does not score points). How were you able to unseat the boards as they are very tightly secured? Any recommendations would be appreciated.

    #40 6 months ago

    General observation about Sentinel/Wonder Wizard machines: The wiring harness is a loose bundle of wires. You'd think the manufacturer could spend a few pennies for some zip ties to neaten up the harness like other pinball machine manufacturers.

    #41 6 months ago
    Quoted from Leo_T:

    I wish to unseat my audio board to fix some rollover/bonus slot scoring problems (it does not score points). How were you able to unseat the boards as they are very tightly secured? Any recommendations would be appreciated.

    In general, when I encounter "difficult" to remove boards mounted vertically, I *carefully* pry up the board with a screwdriver. Of course I first look to see if there are any screws/ties/studs/brackets that may need to be removed first before the board can be released.

    2 weeks later
    #42 6 months ago

    Leo_T Instead of pulling up on the boards, I push up from the bottom using my fingers in a rocking motion. I was very nervous, but with a little patience and effort the board came out.

    #43 6 months ago

    KenLayton
    Ken you rock! I have been reading your responses to several of the Star Explorer posts. Thank you for your patience and friendly replies.

    My son discovered the Star Explorer in his Grandfather's shed over the summer that must have been there for 35 years. It has been a great project for us, especially him. He has learned about soldiering and electronics. We have done many of the recommended changes on this post and 2 others. Now, we have hit a brick wall.

    What areas should make sound?

    Currently, we have sound being triggered from metal rollover contact strip of the Bonus strip on the far top left side of the playing field and the Bonus hole. However, we do not have any sound from the top 2 metal rollover contact strips in the playing. These contact strips do trigger the points counter, just no sound. We have replaced the IC202. Do you have any other suggestions?

    Thanks,
    Ken

    #44 6 months ago

    IC 201, IC 203, and IC 204 are chips relating to sounds generation. You might try replacing them.

    1 month later
    #45 5 months ago
    Quoted from heni1977:

    I know changed all the transistors small and large. Or pre drivers and drivers is the term used. Then the bridge rectifiers and finally it came down to the interconnect chip being bad. Can't remember for sure which one runs your solenoids.

    Where is the interconnect chip?

    #46 5 months ago
    Quoted from KenLayton:

    Reseat all connectors and boards in the backbox. If that doesn't help then you've got electronics problems. Possibly that "push-to-reset" circuit breaker is bad. If so, you can replace it with a 2.5 amp slo-blo fuse and fuseholder. If that doesn't fix it, then test bridge rectifier BR402. If that's ok, then test/replace integrated circuit IC101.
    Be sure to read everything here:
    http://www.pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=Sentinel_/_Wonder_Wizard

    How does one go about replacing this with a fuse ?

    #47 5 months ago
    Quoted from Chuckh:

    How does one go about replacing this with a fuse ?

    Radio Shack # 2700739 fuseholder and Radio Shack # 2701024 Fuse, 2.5 amp slo-blo are the parts.

    #48 5 months ago

    These little black guys are IC chips and should numbered as KenLayton said IC 201,203,204 are related to sounds. Others will be for solenoids. I will look at print and see if I can tell which are for solenoids. Hard to read this print as it is old and I am still noobish!

    pasted_image (resized).png
    #49 5 months ago

    KenLayton please correct me if I am wrong and school us with your knowledge and the correct answer!
    I think these small ones indicated in red are logic gates which I think are a smaller ic chip and would all be Identified with the same # IC101.
    As for the IC chip 106 which I believe is for the solenoids would be indicated in blue.
    I might be wrong, as I am trying to learn here as well.

    pasted_image (resized).png
    #50 5 months ago

    IC106 drives the outhole ball return coil.

    All other coils are operated by their respective switches which in turn operate the driver transistors (no ICs are involved for those coils as well as the flippers).

    There are 62 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.

    Hey there! Got a moment?

    Great to see you're enjoying Pinside! Did you know Pinside is able to run thanks to donations from our visitors? Please donate to Pinside, support the site and get anext to your username to show for it! Donate to Pinside