(Topic ID: 262300)

Bally Amigo - Weak Flippers, Play Field Light Issues

By mattbirk

1 year ago


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  • 34 posts
  • 8 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by RonSS
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

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#1 1 year ago

Hi,

I am new here; my father gave me his Bally Amigo pinball machine and it worked two-three years ago. Today, the machine has some issues that I want to look into fixing myself, since having a tech out sounded more expensive than the machine is worth.

First thing, the flippers are weak. Both of them. From my research this could be quite a few different things, from cleaning the buttons to replacing the flipper coils. Any suggestions in troubleshooting this issue?

Second thing, the play field lights don't work. They did power on when I first powered on the machine, but haven't since. Possible fuse issue here I believe, but I think the fuse board is broke/damaged. Suggestions? I attached a photo I happened to take after initial boot up where the play field is lit.

Third thing, the trigger that moves the ball over to the ball launcher isn't working; the ball gets stuck and pressing the Start button doesn't work either to kick the ball over. Any ideas?

Thanks in advance for any replies, I look forward to this learning project.

Thanks,
Matt

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#2 1 year ago

Will the flippers propel the ball to the top of the playfield?
The first thing I would suggest is to examine the wires that connect to the flipper solenoids and make sure that none are loose or broken off at the solder joint.

I once helped a fellow with a Bally Nip-It who reported both flippers were weak after the game had been transported. It turned out that both flippers had the same wire connection to the solenoid (the shunt wire that short circuits the hold coil) fractured off at the terminals. Easy fix in that case.

#3 1 year ago

That's a nice looking game!

Check if the flippers "have play" when you wiggle them by hand. The bushings may be shot, giving you the weak feeling. I just did a refurb on my A-Go-Go flippers: night and day!

Check fuses by pulling each out one at a time to test. Also, make sure the correct fuse is being used (3 amp, slo-blo, etc).

For the ball kick out, is the coil firing?

Good luck, this forum is full of knowledge.

#4 1 year ago

First thing I would do is replace that entire fuse block with something like this:
https://www.radioshack.com/collections/fuse-holders/products/radioshack-chassis-type-4-position-fuse-block?variant=20332271493

That will fix your light problem and prevent any future fuse holder issues.

#5 1 year ago

I looked at it today, and the flippers don't even move, and the ball doesn't kick over to the launcher. I am thinking it's an issue with the fuse block. In the video, when I remove the white fuse, OR the in line fuse (orange wire), the back lights don't work.

No change when removing fuses 1 and 3. Those two are very weak, the fuse holder wings are not applying any pressure.

You can see a couple short clips of the machine here. I feel like first problem is the power issue.

Might be a good idea to replace that fuse board like edednedy suggested.

Thoughts?

#6 1 year ago

Replace fuse holder and fuses first. Then continue. The playfield lights and back box lights go through the lock relay. Make sure they are making good contact.

You can get similar fuse holders at Pinball Resource. You will need new rubbers and you should replace the ball too. Start a list and order.

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#7 1 year ago

Yes, get new fuse holders. Number 1 priority.

#8 1 year ago

After doing the fuse holder, check the EOS sw. on the flippers. And from the manual, re: the ball kicker. The score motor sw. is 7D (lettering starts at the bottom of the stack)
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#9 1 year ago

Thanks so much for all the info. I have ordered fuse holders. Can anyone recommend a solder gun and solder? I haven't really done this before, although it seems very straight forward...just making circuits/connections. And I will be careful to not short anything out.

#10 1 year ago
Quoted from mattbirk:

I have ordered fuse holders. Can anyone recommend a solder gun and solder?

I like my simple Weller with a chisel tip and thin 60/40 solder (0.8). Check YouTube for soldering hints. That's how I learned.

#11 1 year ago

Biggest issue new solderers have is putting solder on the tip. You want to heat up the joint and apply solder to that. When you put it on the tip, the solder melts but the joint isn't usually hot enough and you get a cold solder joint.

Best advice I can give for replacing those fuse holders, is to unplug all the jones plugs from the bottom board, take out the bolts holding it to the cabinet, and remove it . Place it on a bench, or sideways across the cabinet (with the playfield removed).

This will allow you much better access to the spot where you need to solder and keep you from having to stand on your head while trying to solder inside a box. The few minutes that it takes to remove it and put it back are well worth it.

#12 1 year ago

Update: I replaced the four fuse blocks, but no changes. The back lights still works, but the playfield does not light up. Also, the machine seems non-responsive, the start button doesn't kick the ball over. When turning the machine on it used to reset the score, but nothing happens when I turn it on except the back lights and quarter light turn on. When I hit start there is a click, but that's all.

Pics: http://imgur.com/a/UBTkfzG

What's the next suggestion? I have some stuff I'm reading up on to that was sent to me from a user, I will dig more into that tomorrow.

I want to add, the playfield did light up the first time I started it after moving it and I did get to actually play a ball, but after that, nothing. So idk if that would mean a loose wire or what else could possibly be happening.

Thanks,
Matt
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#13 1 year ago
Quoted from mattbirk:

the start button doesn't kick the ball over

How far in the startup sequence is it getting?
https://www.ipdb.org/files/71/Bally_1974_Amigo_Manual.pdf

#14 1 year ago

The only things needed to complete the circuit to your playfield lights are the fuses (which you already fixed), the Lock relay and the jones plugs. The Lock relay has one switch that closes to the GI for the backbox and a different switch that closes to light the playfield. Since your backbox lights and your playfield doesn't, that switch is your most likely suspect.

As to your start up problem. Are you sure you have credits on the credit unit? The credit unit should be on any number except zero, unless you have the switch bent or jumpered for free play.

What happens when you engage the credit or coin relay manually with your finger?

#15 1 year ago

Did you test the fuses?

#16 1 year ago
Quoted from edednedy:

As to your start up problem. Are you sure you have credits on the credit unit? The credit unit should be on any number except zero, unless you have the switch bent or jumpered for free play. What happens when you engage the credit or coin relay manually with your finger?

So the game was in free mode previously so I thought, but I tried this and manually hit the coin button...boom, the playfield lights up! It also added credits to the back board, so I clicked it enough times to put 10 credits on the machine. Also, the flippers are working (but still very weak)! What is not working is that the ball is not getting pushed from the bottom over to the launcher. How do I begin troubleshooting what would prevent the ball from getting kicked over to the launcher? Also, the ball gets stuck between the two guide rails and doesn't get launched out.

Making progress here, I appreciate everyone's help so far. That issue appeared to be user error. I'm learning...

Also, the fuses I believe are all good, since I tested all four by moving them to the fuse slots that powered the back panel and all four worked.

Thanks,
Matt

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#17 1 year ago
Quoted from mattbirk:

So the game was in free mode previously so I thought, but I tried this and manually hit the coin button...boom, the playfield lights up! It also added credits to the back board, so I clicked it enough times to put 10 credits on the machine. Also, the flippers are working (but still very weak)! What is not working is that the ball is not getting pushed from the bottom over to the launcher. How do I begin troubleshooting what would prevent the ball from getting kicked over to the launcher? Also, the ball gets stuck between the two guide rails and doesn't get launched out.
Making progress here, I appreciate everyone's help so far. That issue appeared to be user error. I'm learning...
Also, the fuses I believe are all good, since I tested all four by moving them to the fuse slots that powered the back panel and all four worked.
Thanks,
Matt

Hi Matt,

In the future, to check fuses, get yourself a Digital MultiMeter (DMM) pop each fuse out, one at a time. I generally use the diode setting to test for continuity (The triangle looking mode). That way you'll know which fuse, if any, needs to be replaced.

Glad it's working! We all took small steps to start. I'm in this thing about 2 years and learn something new every machine - both what to and what not to do!!!

********

As to your ball not being pushed onto the launcher, is there a metal arm that is supposed to do this, or is it gravity fed? If it has an arm, you may need to test that coil. Also, check if there is a wire that may not be being pushed down. It's possible the machine doesn't realize there is a ball there. I'm not familiar with that game, but it could just be a switch adjustment.

#18 1 year ago

First, make sure your outhole switch is clean and closes with a ball in it. If it looks alright, does the outhole relay energize?
If the outhole relay energizes but the ball doesn't kick, clean switches on Outhole relay. If the outhole relay doesn't energize make sure your zero position make/break switch is closed on your bonus unit. If that doesn't work, you'll have to look at the score motor switches or jones plug connectors shown in the schematic.

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#19 1 year ago

Dumb question: Are all four fuses the same?

I see them labeled as 15a, 15a, 10a, and 8a. Do I need specific fuses for each?

I will look at the outhole later this evening and try to answer the above questions.

#20 1 year ago

Update: I was looking under the play field at the outhole and noticed two wires, one disconnected, and one a terrible connection to the flipper. I don't think this is my fix for the outhole, but maybe the flipper power issue?

Do I need to solder these wires, one on each flipper? It looks like someone just wrapped wire around the connector instead of soldering it, and over time they came out of contact. Could this explain the lack of power to the flippers? I want to verify before I solder that those wires do indeed belong where I see them in the photos.

A few things:
1) It looks like I need to fix that exposed wire that starts in yellow sheathing and is then exposed.
2) In the pic with the purple trace, that wire is disconnected, but I believe it needs to be connected to the flipper, which is what I circled in red.
3) The pic with the green trace, that wire is connected, but barely. It looks like the same with the other side in the other pic. Someone must have lazily fixed this machine?

The pictures are the flippers, on the underside of the playfield.

Thanks,
Matt
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#21 1 year ago

Get some alligator clips so you can test before soldering. If it checks out, then solder.

Also, remove the ball, then tip your playfield all the way up. It will rest on the backbox. Makes seeing much easier.

You're getting there!

#22 1 year ago
Quoted from mattbirk:

Dumb question: Are all four fuses the same?
I see them labeled as 15a, 15a, 10a, and 8a. Do I need specific fuses for each?
I will look at the outhole later this evening and try to answer the above questions.

Yes, specific fuses. Usually the ends of the fuses are stamped with the values.

Not a dumb question, a good one!

#23 1 year ago
Quoted from edednedy:

First thing I would do is replace that entire fuse block with something like this:
https://www.radioshack.com/collections/fuse-holders/products/radioshack-chassis-type-4-position-fuse-block?variant=20332271493
That will fix your light problem and prevent any future fuse holder issues.

+1 Bally fuse holders are well known for being shit

#24 1 year ago
Quoted from RonSS:

Did you test the fuses?

& make sure each is the correct value for where it's used. I don't recall EVER fixing a pin that had the correct fuses in it.

#25 1 year ago

Yes, Put the correct fuses in as marked. Also, I wouldn't bother messing with the flippers until you get everything else working. Flippers are the last thing I work on. Otherwise it's kind of like fixing the windshield wipers when your car won't start.

#26 1 year ago

It looks like maybe those loose and poorly connected wires go to the end of stroke (EOS) switch! If so, that is what I was writing about in post #2. If those wires are disconnected, the EOS switch becomes non functional and the low-power hold coil remains in the flipper solenoid circuit, which then results in low current (or low power).

Read about flipper function here, especially toward the bottom of the section: http://www.pinrepair.com/em/index3.htm#flips

From looking at your 3rd photo in your recent post, it appears that the prior owner did a very poor solder job on the wires to those flipper coils. I see several big, dull-looking globs and one that looks cold soldered. Once you become proficient with soldering (or get some help), I would strongly recommend those wires all be resoldered.

Lee

#27 1 year ago
Quoted from edednedy:

First, make sure your outhole switch is clean and closes with a ball in it. If it looks alright, does the outhole relay energize?
If the outhole relay energizes but the ball doesn't kick, clean switches on Outhole relay. If the outhole relay doesn't energize make sure your zero position make/break switch is closed on your bonus unit. If that doesn't work, you'll have to look at the score motor switches or jones plug connectors shown in the schematic.[quoted image]

When a ball is in it, it does force the metal contact, but the outhole ball assembly solenoid does not energize or move when the switch is hit by the ball. All the wires look connected properly. How do I check zero position? I'm a bit confused there. Thanks!

Quoted from RonSS:

Get some alligator clips so you can test before soldering.

Quoted from Runbikeskilee:

It looks like maybe those loose and poorly connected wires go to the end of stroke (EOS) switch! If so, that is what I was writing about in post #2.

I did a quick test with alligator clips, and sure enough it seems to have fixed that issue. Will continue focusing on the other part of the machine before I solder those wires, as the above analogy of replacing windshield wipers on a car that won't start makes sense.

Quoted from RonSS:

Yes, specific fuses. Usually the ends of the fuses are stamped with the values.
Not a dumb question, a good one!

None of the fuses matched the amps so will be replacing all four.

One additional thing, in the attached photo, this wire is not connected to anything. I know it's hard to say, but any ideas where it belongs connected to?

Thanks,
Matt

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#28 1 year ago

When a ball enters the outhole, it closes the outhole switch. That switch should close the Outhole Relay. Then a switch on the outhole relay will close energizing your kick out coil but all these also run through score motor switches as shown:

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#29 1 year ago
Quoted from dasvis:

+1 Bally fuse holders are well known for being shit

Oops, looks like someone already replaced the fuse holders.....

#30 1 year ago
Quoted from edednedy:

When a ball enters the outhole, it closes the outhole switch. That switch should close the Outhole Relay. Then a switch on the outhole relay will close energizing your kick out coil but all these also run through score motor switches as shown:[quoted image]

So when I manually make the outhole relay connect (in photo), it kicks the outhole, and it works. It's not doing it automatically. For example, if the ball hits the outhole switch, it does close it. But nothing happens. If I manually hit the relay, it kicks the lever. The bonus switch is open, see photo. I guess it's maybe a bad connection somewhere...but where is the challenge. I guess that's my next step... trying to understand the schematics, but it's confusing to me. Will do some research. I reseated the Jones plugs, but no change. Also, I used a multimeter and there is power to the outhole.

Quoted from dasvis:

Oops, looks like someone already replaced the fuse holders.....

Yes, I replaced those already this past week, thanks!

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#31 1 year ago

Did you inspect the outhole switch by hand also?

If it is a leaf switch, are the 2 metal "nubs" touching (or releasing) when the switch is activated by hand/ball?

This is fun!

#32 1 year ago

In order to complete the circuit to the outhole relay, a make/break switch on the Bonus Unit should be closed on one side and open on the other, when reset to the zero position. Try placing a jumper wire on this switch and see what happens.

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#33 1 year ago

Good evening,

So I think I need to take a step back and not focus so much on the outhole as I believe there are other issues.

1. The game seems to be stuck on player two, even after power cycling it. I'll turn it off and on, and still remains on player 2.

2. The "Ball Count Unit" never spins. I can change it manually, but it doesn't move on its on.

3. The "Coin Unit" never spins either. That's how it should be able to select 1-4 players, but I can't. Again, I can change this manually in the cabinet.

4. To start a game I have to hit the lever on the back of the coin area. There are 23 credits, and it seems the credit never decrease. I'm not sure if that's coin unit, outhole, etc.

I think I gave more problems than solutions!

Thanks,
Matt

EDIT: on second thought, and more looking into it, I think the above issues are all due to the fact the outhole is not being reset. Sorry, I'm all over the place trying to understand this, but I do think it's related to the outhole.

1 week later
#34 1 year ago

Any progress?

Hey there! Got a moment?

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