(Topic ID: 308073)

advice about upgrading Stern flipper coil

By tampa12

7 months ago


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  • 15 posts
  • 9 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 months ago by tampa12
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

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#1 7 months ago

My son and I play Avengers infinity pin every day and after awhile we get flipper fade because flipper coils gets hotter then weaker, so we ordered cooling kit which should help. However still want faster shots and make shots up the inverted marvel ramp easier which ball REALLY struggles every time to climb even when flipper settings are maxed out and rear feet lowered. long story short we ordered 2 of Stern's strongest flipper coils for Avengers Infinity Pin which is 1 grade higher than what is installed and want to know if anyone has experience upgrading their flipper coils. You can see in the Pic my Godzilla pinball has coil 090-5020 no diode and game shoots amazing up the invert ramp. So we want that coil installed for our Avengers pin too.
see pic, my Godzilla pin has 090-5032-ND / 22-1080 coil on left and right coil is 090-5020-20-ND / 22-900 no diode.
Avengers infinity pin has 090-5032-ND / 22-1080 for both flippers and want to upgrade both flipper coils to 090-5020-20T coils but they have a diode. is wiring the new coil the same and is coil diode going to make a difference? I know diode allows voltage in one way and not the other, so i think it's protecting the coil or circuit. can I install these coils safely with diodes or should diodes be cut?
any advice is welcomed, I also have 10+ years experience fixing tech and some experience fixing Pins and changing coils.

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#2 7 months ago
Quoted from tampa12:

My son and I play Avengers infinity pin every day and after awhile we get flipper fade because flipper coils gets hotter then weaker, so we ordered cooling kit which should help. However still want faster shots and make shots up the inverted marvel ramp easier which ball REALLY struggles every time to climb even when flipper settings are maxed out and rear feet lowered. long story short we ordered 2 of Stern's strongest flipper coils for Avengers Infinity Pin which is 1 grade higher than what is installed and want to know if anyone has experience upgrading their flipper coils. You can see in the Pic my Godzilla pinball has coil 090-5020 no diode and game shoots amazing up the invert ramp. So we want that coil installed for our Avengers pin too.
see pic, my Godzilla pin has 090-5032-ND / 22-1080 coil on left and right coil is 090-5020-20-ND / 22-900 no diode.
Avengers infinity pin has 090-5032-ND / 22-1080 for both flippers and want to upgrade both flipper coils to 090-5020-20T coils but they have a diode. is wiring the new coil the same and is coil diode going to make a difference? I know diode allows voltage in one way and not the other, so i think it's protecting the coil or circuit. can I install these coils safely with diodes or should diodes be cut?
any advice is welcomed, I also have 10+ years experience fixing tech and some experience fixing Pins and changing coils.
[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

With the active cooling of the Tibetan Breeze kit you ordered, you should be good to go - it will eliminate the fade. I would not recommend changing out the coils. I would instead look at optimizing your current setup to correct the coil performance:

1. Check EOS isn't triggering before flipper is at peak (use switch test and manually move flipper slowly and note when EOS triggers - adjust if it's before the flipper is at peak)
2. Check coil stop (REMOVE it and try to move the middle - visual inspection sometimes looks good when it's not)
3. Check coil sleeve for free movement.
4. Wax the playfield with a carnuba wax like P21S. Buff with lambswool pad.
5. Check that flipper switch blades at the flipper buttons are making solid contact when the button is depressed (both levels if there are 2 flippers on a side) instead of BARELY making contact which can cause the coils to flutter power and feel weak.
6. Check coil resistance with a multimeter (ohms setting) to make sure you don't have a bad or out of spec coil robbing you of power.
7. Check power settings in system menu for coils. With active cooling, you can afford to turn this up to give more power. (you did this, but for posterity's sake of other people with the same idea, adding to the checklist).

Here's a Stern coil strength chart, most to least (part, resistance in ohms, windings, wire gauge):
090-5020 3.4 900 22
090-5032 4.3 1080 22
090-5030 5.1 1100 23
090-5025 9.5 1570 24

For your vertical ramp, slo-mo it with a cell phone video and see if there's something about the ball entry that's robbing it of power.

Do this instead of changing out coils. Too-strong coils break stuff faster. Not a good idea, especially since you now have the active cooling covered to keep the performance consistent once you get it dialed in.

#3 7 months ago

DONT DO IT

#4 7 months ago

Indeed! AIQ's game/note code was designed based around the stock flippers. Swapping out the coils for more powerful ones could blow a node or the coil.

If you want faster play, then wax your playfield. That will get the ball zooming faster than you'll ever imagine.

#5 7 months ago
Quoted from Shogun00:

Indeed! AIQ's game/note code was designed based around the stock flippers. Swapping out the coils for more powerful ones could blow a node or the coil.
If you want faster play, then wax your playfield. That will get the ball zooming faster than you'll ever imagine.

I think it's very unlikely to blow a node or coil (they don't customize node boards per machine, and this node is in other machines with bigger coils), but it CAN break stuff on your playfield with stronger shots than it was designed to handle.

Wax is a great suggestion I forgot. Too obvious. D'oh.

#6 7 months ago

I think it is generally ill-advised to deviate from OEM specs in most situations (I assume the professionals who designed the circuit are smarter than I, a marginally capable hobbyist).

The original coils were carefully selected in order to achieve the gameplay desired by the designer, and as PinMonk stated when you go in and simply dial everything up to “11” you’ll put unnecessary strain on a variety of parts and things will start breaking prematurely, and you can also conceivably screw up other aspects of gameplay in ways you might not be able to anticipate.

If the flipper as originally specified isn’t performing adequately, the first thing to do is to check everything PinMonk suggested, and given your pattern of playing definitely consider adding forced cooling. You also might consider simply doing a full flipper rebuild; your game is old enough that there is probably sufficient overall wear to reduce performance, and replacing all the consumable parts en masse (cheap and not difficult) will yield a noticeable improvement that will almost definitely feel like an “upgrade”.

#7 7 months ago

Just wanted to amen PinMonk post, especially the EOS switch adjustment. You can get a lot of extra oomph by getting those right.

#8 7 months ago
Quoted from PinMonk:

With the active cooling of the Tibetan Breeze kit you ordered, you should be good to go - it will eliminate the fade. I would not recommend changing out the coils. I would instead look at optimizing your current setup to correct the coil performance:
1. Check EOS isn't triggering before flipper is at peak (use switch test and manually move flipper slowly and note when EOS triggers - adjust if it's before the flipper is at peak)
2. Check coil stop (REMOVE it and try to move the middle - visual inspection sometimes looks good when it's not)
3. Check coil sleeve for free movement.
4. Wax the playfield with a carnuba wax like P21S. Buff with lambswool pad.
5. Check that flipper switch blades at the flipper buttons are making solid contact when the button is depressed (both levels if there are 2 flippers on a side) instead of BARELY making contact which can cause the coils to flutter power and feel weak.
6. Check coil resistance with a multimeter (ohms setting) to make sure you don't have a bad or out of spec coil robbing you of power.
7. Check power settings in system menu for coils. With active cooling, you can afford to turn this up to give more power. (you did this, but for posterity's sake of other people with the same idea, adding to the checklist).
Here's a Stern coil strength chart, most to least (part, resistance in ohms, windings, wire gauge):
090-5020 3.4 900 22
090-5032 4.3 1080 22
090-5030 5.1 1100 23
090-5025 9.5 1570 24
For your vertical ramp, slo-mo it with a cell phone video and see if there's something about the ball entry that's robbing it of power.
Do this instead of changing out coils. Too-strong coils break stuff faster. Not a good idea, especially since you now have the active cooling covered to keep the performance consistent once you get it dialed in.

Reply: I went ahead installed the upgraded flipper coils and got an error on node board 8 because I didn't cut the diodes on those coils. I guess the protection diodes are located on the boards now but back in the day they needed the diodes on the coil. After cutting the diodes on both flipper coils the game booted up perfectly and played amazing but did lower both flipper power setting a bit. I actually had my best game, but once again I had flipper coil fade after 1hr of gameplay so I'll be using cooling kit for sure. I will keep everyone updated and let you guys know how things are running, thanks for all the advice and help. See pic. I cut the diode on the coil after I took the pic. I got the idea to use this upgrade coil because my Stern Godzilla pro pinball machine had it and used the similar node board as avengers Infinity. Not one plastic was harmed during gameplay and no bounce outs on ramps or wire forms.

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#9 7 months ago
Quoted from tampa12:

Not one plastic was harmed during gameplay and no bounce outs on ramps or wire forms. [quoted image]

The damage to playfield components from too-strong coils doesn't happen immediately, but over time. If you turned the power down, that's good, but using the stock coils and doing the stuff on the list probably would have achieved the same result with less wear and tear on the machine over time.

But it's your machine for YOUR amusement to do with as you wish.

#10 7 months ago

Makes post asking should I do this? Dozens say NO! Next post, I did it!

#11 6 months ago

I agree with him---it's not a problem --just have to cut diodes. That being said I have the cooling fans and keep it waxed and it's good. I can see the advantage of changing coils though--the shots are are all at the back of the game. Also the CM shot would be more consistent. May try eventually.

1 month later
#12 5 months ago

I added the upgraded coils (needed to cut coil diode) because Avengers ramp shots got too many rejects and default flipper power settings were max out. I also have the coil fans but they only make the flipper coils maintain strength not increase strength. If you get ball rejects then upgrade but it will void your warranty.
*1 month later: I have no regrets in fact pin is more enjoyable and faster. No broken plastics or electronic issues to report but did lower flipper power settings a bit.
*Note I'm a repair tech and have 10+ years experience in fixing electronics.

#13 5 months ago
Quoted from tampa12:

I added the upgraded coils (needed to cut coil diode) because Avengers ramp shots got too many rejects and default flipper power settings were max out. I also have the coil fans but they only make the flipper coils maintain strength not increase strength. If you get ball rejects then upgrade but it will void your warranty.
*1 month later: I have no regrets in fact pin is more enjoyable and faster. No broken plastics or electronic issues to report but did lower flipper power settings a bit.
*Note I'm a repair tech and have 10+ years experience in fixing electronics.

Are you Tempa Tec on YouTube? Enjoy your vids

#14 5 months ago

Your game, your rules

Although it is worth noting by using a stronger coil, ie one with a lower resistance, it will heat up faster and more quickly fade than the stock coil. So the active cooling is definitely a must with the stronger coil. (I wonder how long till people start to liquid cool their coils. Only half joking)

1 month later
#15 4 months ago

another update: upgraded flipper coils performing amazing and shots hit ramps smoothly, almost no ramp ball rejects. No broken plastics to report. I did install flipper coil fans, which helps keep the upgraded flipper coils performing at peak performance and adds life to the coils since they don't overheat anymore. I have 10+ years tech experience and still learning. I feel that originally Stern realized the coils they used were kinda weak for Avengers infinity but instead of upgrading all the coils for stronger coils they maxed out the flipper power setting, just a theory.

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