Last night was the low point of my pinball operating career.
I haven't worked this hard since I worked at CSC. I haven't been this burned out since I missed a flight out of SEATAC and spent all night in Las Vegas, not getting any sleep for 24 hours.
Friday I spent all day up in Phoenix getting two pinball machines from My Project Pin Guy in Scottsdale.
He has quite a background in pinball. I took him to lunch and enjoyed hearing some of his stories.
Later that day I visited my San Tan Valley Project Pin Guy. He gave me 39 locks from the days he used to operate pinballs for a mere pittance. These locks are super heavy duty locks and look the part. I don't know what these locks are worth, but new high quality locks cost me $16 and his locks are better than the stuff I can get today. He also had a Gottlieb chimes unit, very hard to find, that I needed for Jack in the Box. We agreed to $100 for everything but I will be sending him $200. He and so many others have been a huge part of getting my Pecos Pinball biz up and running. I am so blessed - truly! Thank you guys!
Saturday and Sunday I spent all afternoon at the Spotted Bull getting two machines set up.
The long and short of it was that I was feeling pretty burned out and down after I found three problems on Aztec and after I had to bring Harlem Globetrotters On Tour back home to fix two problems.
Pinsiders brijam, clg - all the way from 'down under' lands, chalkey, brianbannon, tomahawkjim and cudabee - all the way from the Netherlands, gave me some good advice, provided solace in my time of troubles and sent some very important encouragement. What a great group of people pinball people are and what a wonderful Website for pinball that Pinside is!
I'm back at it today after a good nights sleep. Missing my afternoon naps has made me a grumpy old man!
Quoted from cudabee:
If i see the middle rectifier you used more solder, maybe the burnt one had insufficient solder, got hot and started to arc.
I think you are right, cudabee. Good diagnose it and thanks for mentioning it. I need to know what happened and why so I won't make this mistake again. That is the best explanation and makes a whole lot of sense considering the problems I was having getting the top side of the board properly soldered.
I looked for the transistor number for the target saucer solenoid on the schematic and found that it was Q11. I pulled the solenoid board this morning, officially called AS-2518-16 Solenoid Driver Board Assy and got out my DMM to test Q11. I certainly expected that to be the problem. It wasn't! Surprise - Surprise - Surprise! It turned out to be a broken trace or a cold solder joint, not on the connector but on one of the transistor legs! More surprise!
Not the greatest soldering job. I won't be overly critical though, my soldering skills aren't much better.
Here is a close-up of the solder joints and trace. Hard to see any breaks in the circuit, but the continuity test wasn't lying.
With that solved, I pulled the power supply/rectifier board. Bally officially calls it the AS-2518-18 'Transformer Assy.' The bridge rectifier still tests good, but what a mess! That must have been quite a light show!
I will be ordering bayonet style (#44/#47) SMD LEDs tonight or tomorrow, probably from Comet. I like their bright white SMDs. I used them on Hardbody and they really bring the playfield to life.
I will be using my brother and his wife's birthday gift to purchase a new Transformer Board, pre-assembled, from weebly.com. I neither have the time or the confidence in my soldering skills at this point to try the DIY kit. I will in the future. I really enjoy these kind of projects. Thank you, brother mine.