(Topic ID: 172117)

Are shaker motors totally safe for the pinball cabinet ?


By chucksmith

4 years ago



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  • 20 posts
  • 15 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 years ago by jorro
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SVS2000 (resized).jpg

#1 4 years ago

Is there risk to the cabinet's seams and construction from using a shaker motor?
The action seems rather abusive to the cabinet's structure.
Since Stern puts shakers in its LE's , do the LE's have any additional reinforcement over the Premiums or pro's ?

I like the idea of shaker motor, but I need to learn more about how a pinball machine cabinet can take this abuse long term.

Shaker motor users, I appropriate your input. Has anyone witnessed splitting or cracked seams due to the shaker motor ?

For Reference: I have a Ghostbusters Premium.

#2 4 years ago

I own an Earthshaker and the cabinet's fine. Which is a lot more than I can say for the plaster on my walls and ceiling.

#3 4 years ago

I personally have never seen any damage to the cabinet or internal workings of a pinball machine. Not tosay that it wont happen though. I did play a roadshow that shook so much that it seemed like there was two shakers in it! That was awesome . I will say that maybe in time depending on age of machine that eventually something is going to shake loose!

#4 4 years ago

if the shaker is in good ballance, no problems

#5 4 years ago
Quoted from jorro:

if the shaker is in good ballance, no problems

The whole idea of a shaker is UNbalance

#7 4 years ago

i personally claim that the newer, lighter, cheaper stern spike cabinets can't handle them. I had numerous problems with my GOT pro, so i unplugged the shaker= less problems and strange breaks. i had multiple wierd EOS switch and flipper components fail (not fail, literally metal was broken in half), and i had coin door service switch issues. funny thing is, i ordered another shaker for my TWD pro, and i will probably not even install it.

on the other note, i had a shaker motor in my tron (no problems) and i still have one in my metallica pro (no problems).

#8 4 years ago

Cabinets are not really the issue.
Electronics and parts.
I have never seen a RS yet that did not have some sorts of playfield parts in the bottom of the cabinet over a period time.
Mostly nuts and mini light bulbs, but some of the driver boards also get busted up like the LED sign boards, and event the motor EMI driver boards.

Today's surface mounted boards conformal coatings are much better than the original component boards for protection, but solder traces and connections DO crack under the vibration.
I really don't know how well SPIKE boards have been properly tested, but a shaker motor is like lifting the machine up and down at high frequencies without dropping it.
Over time, high frequency vibrations do damage modern PCBs (those type of boards under high stress in other industries are normally independently mounted with shock absorbers which is not done in pinball machines), but the periods are longer than the lifecycles of the boards themselves that are only designed for roughly 5 years before failure.
That is something people may not know.

Stern is not designing these games to run forever.
They are designing them to run for under 10 years (commercial environment) and be replaced with new games.
The cabinet is not going to give out in 10 years, but the electronics may.
I cannot tell you the risks with CGC MMr and the master PCB under than playfield at half its overall dimensions with a shaker motor running, but it does not not favorable in terms of overall vibration antics.

#9 4 years ago

I've wondered about all the ghosting & de-laminated inserts , if the shaker is partly responsible. A lot of LE owners talk about the inserts and every LE has a shaker motor.

#10 4 years ago

Shaker motors are totally safe for both electronics and cabinet.

EVERY old game has various parts in the bottom of the cab before it's restored, it's not like Earthshaker is unique in that respect.

Newer electronic components are much lighter weight and thus less likely to crack their solder joints from the mass's momentum.

Ghosting is the failure of the clearcoat to adhere to the substrate.

The clearcoat does not peel off those giant subwoofers in your theater, and they run continuously.

SVS2000 (resized).jpg

#11 4 years ago

My IMVE has had a shaker motor in it since game #1. It now has just over 20,000 plays with no significant issues. Same is true with my AC/DC pro with over 15,000 plays.

Don't sweat it.

#12 4 years ago

Shaker motors are dangerous. I know a guy who knew a guy that had a pin explode with violent force due to the shaker. The blast blew off his left hand and scrotum.

#13 4 years ago
Quoted from kpg:

Shaker motors are dangerous. I know a guy who knew a guy that had a pin explode with violent force due to the shaker. The blast blew off his left hand and scrotum.

Pics or it didn't happen

#14 4 years ago
Quoted from kpg:

Shaker motors are dangerous. I know a guy who knew a guy that had a pin explode with violent force due to the shaker. The blast blew off his left hand and scrotum.

Why did he have his scrotum in his left hand?

#15 4 years ago
Quoted from kpg:

Shaker motors are dangerous. I know a guy who knew a guy that had a pin explode with violent force due to the shaker. The blast blew off his left hand and scrotum.


Quoted from Esoteric_rt:Pics or it didn't happen


Quoted from bam10:Why did he have his scrotum in his left hand?

#16 4 years ago
Quoted from kpg:

blew off his left hand and scrotum.

OMG! We need to ban shaker motors.

#17 4 years ago

Has anyone added more than one? I want to line the entire bottom of the cabinet with them.

#18 4 years ago

I want one for the wife if you catch my drift !!

#19 4 years ago
Quoted from bam10:

Why did he have his scrotum in his left hand?

The investigators are still trying to figure out why themselves

#20 4 years ago

was his scrotum next to the shaker at the moment of explosion?

my jp has a shaker, am i missing out?

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