(Topic ID: 12662)

atari middle earth


By knexster

7 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 13 posts
  • 10 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by Boise_D
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders

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#1 7 years ago

I just got an Atari Middle Earth pinball machine, the model is PME-4. I believe its a 78. this is my first pinball machine so I'm here for advice on how to proceed with my new project.

1. The machine runs but it has a short or something. after playing for a few minutes the machine basically goes haywire. the bumpers and flippers begin to activate uncontrollably.

2. not all the lights on the board illuminate, generally right before it goes haywire the lights on the play field appear to properly illuminated before flashing off and on.

3. the score board in the bottom left corner does not appear to be fully functional.

4. after lifting the machine play field up and peering inside I not only noticed the smell of bell bottom jeans and hairspray and of course a lot of dust but most importantly (i think), I noticed burn marks on the board that is fastened to the left side of the machine.

here are a few pictures of the inards... please let me know what I'm in for and if any miter information will be needed. thank you!

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#3 7 years ago

How do the fuses check out? are they all working and the correct type?

#4 7 years ago

Same game as mine. Also recently aquired as my first pin. Can't help with your problems. But a note of caution, if you remove any wires from playfield parts make sure the go back on the same same terminals they came off. I am now in the proccess of repairing the main cuicuit board as I burnt up a transiter and maybe a few diodes, because I reversed the wires on the drop target coil.

9 months later
#5 6 years ago

Darn, I shoulda found this thread a year ago. I have an Atari Middle Earth that doesn't do much past the GI lights and the flippers working. For $75, I have replacement boards from a working ME coming in, which should be due today.

1 week later
#6 6 years ago

So I got the aux board & motherboard in from a the ME. It's showing signs of improvement. The lights flash in attract mode, but it was no better than it was before. No score shows up, slingshots & pop bumpers don't work.

Any idea where to start? I have disconnected & re-connected molex connectors thinking there was something loose.

11 months later
#7 5 years ago
Quoted from knexster:

1. The machine runs but it has a short or something. after playing for a few minutes the machine basically goes haywire. the bumpers and flippers begin to activate uncontrollably.

I have the exact same issue. Were you able to fix it?

#8 5 years ago

I haven't touched my ME in a year, but now the problems seem to have just gotten worse from having it sit there. It's reverted back to just doing nothing when you turn it on, not even the GI lights. I can't even give the dang thing away. Heh

2 weeks later
#9 5 years ago

I had a similar issue with my Time 2000 where the pop bumpers (and probably the slingshots) would seem to start firing randomly after a few minutes of play. My problem ended up being the "Switch Common" line that is normally pulled up to 5 volts when inactive. This line was being pulled down by an issue with SW1 position 6. When this switch was in the "On" position, it was pulling the line voltage down to around 2.5 volts (right around the high/low voltage threshold). My theory is that when the chips in the circuit warmed up it would float further towards ground causing switches to be inaccurately sensed as closed.

My initial thought would be to check your "Switch Common" line to make sure that it's sitting at 5 volts when no switches are activated. Then one by one activate each switch and try and see if this triggers the problem. You should be able to monitor the voltage level of the common line with a DMM or Oscilloscope.

#10 5 years ago
Quoted from knexster:

I just got an Atari Middle Earth pinball machine, the model is PME-4. I believe its a 78. this is my first pinball machine so I'm here for advice on how to proceed with my new project.

Check your voltages when you first turn the machine on and again when the machine acts up.
As with most pinball machines, when 5 volts goes to low, say around 4.75 volts, odd things happen.

3 weeks later
#11 5 years ago

Still not working?

1 year later
#12 3 years ago
1 year later
#13 1 year ago

Looking for some advice on how to get this Middle Earth working again. The machine powers up with displays but then does not coin up. Nothing registers during the coil or switch tests either, although I have heard quite a thunk a couple of times (I think it was a slingshot). The main board looks less hacked on than the aux board. Section A1 on the aux looks messed up. The main board is a -12, which I think is pre-production.

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