(Topic ID: 291055)

Bally Night Rider EM Refurb in Progress,,,

By RonSS

6 months ago


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  • 276 posts
  • 26 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 36 days ago by dhutton
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There are 276 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 6.
10
#1 6 months ago

Hey all,

Picked up this Night Rider a few weeks back. Non-working, super rusted out head unit, decent playfield for not having any glass I guess. Backglass is pretty good, sans a huge hole in the art by Player 1. As a bonus, the head itself is falling apart. No back door, and the rear glass holding pieces and lockdown bar were just handed to me. I've got to say, I was happy to see those parts though! As an aside, super nice seller. Guy was basically just cleaning out a little and looking for a little cash to give to his daughter. Win - win!
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Started off with my old friend vinegar. Had to break the leg levels free. I plan on seeing if I can't gussy them up a bit, but for now I just wanted to make certain this project was going to run fairly quickly, and cheaply. Legs took about 2 nights soaking, then boom, off they came, no problem.
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Got her stood up, and evaluated the project a little:
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Time to work on the rusty score reel coils. I couldn't believe how the plungers were rusted out, in a plastic sleeve. And man were they stuck in there! For the most part, a little iso and gentle tugging got them free. I didn't dismantle each score reel yet. My main goal was to get everything to move and reset to 00000.
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Of course, the last 2 wouldn't budge. At all. I was being very careful to not stress the nylon/plastic parts, so I kept applying iso, then oil, and eventually vinegar. A day later I was still tugging with no release ( ). Eventually I pried the coil support loose, and had access to the plunger. I poured a little more vinegar in there, let it sit, then tapped it out. Problem solved! The last 2 coils were cleaned.

But then I ran across a set of gears not moving. Out of 16 possible reels, only 1 was totally seized. Not bad! I took this one apart and gave it a solid cleaning. No surprise it is the smoothest reel now.
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Hooked everything back up, hit the power, and started a game! Had to tap a few reels to get them to advance; no surprise, I did the minimal amount of work at this point. She's alive! At first the reels didn't turn at all, even though the bells were sounding, but eventually they started moving. My guess is a few contacts under the playfield needed get cleaned.

I've got my plastics cleaned, and am working on a general playfield refurbishment. If all goes well I may try to clear coat this thing, we'll see.

So now I'm looking for a little free advice...

I have no GI at the moment. I have checked the fuses, all 5 test good (out of socket with a DMM). I pulled and replaced all Jones plugs. Most look pretty shiny. Even thought the playfield has no lights, it sounds as though the bonus countdown is still in effect. I've never played Night Rider before, so I'm just guessing here.

Any thoughts on my GI problem (wow, 2 in one post! )

#2 6 months ago

Love to find one, congrats!
As far as illumination, the famous Bally fuse holder?

#3 6 months ago

Unaware of that. This is my first Bally.

I'll look into it. Thanks!

#4 6 months ago

Following! Hope you keep us updated. Love seeing these games saved. So many in better condition have already been thrown away.

#5 6 months ago

The Bally fuse holders are the worst thing ever also it’s easy to lose the gi connection on the back box Jones plug if they’re still dirty. Great job so far, I have one I’m starting soon!

#6 6 months ago

Was it in a place near the Beach? I see a screened in pool room at Cape Hatteras, with the salt air blowing in.
Still not bad though, clean right up.

#7 6 months ago

Just read that 70's Ballys had a left of coin door Jones plug issue as well. Looks like I've got a few leads.

And yeah, beach game, or nice damp basement.

#8 6 months ago
Quoted from RonSS:

I have no GI at the moment. I have checked the fuses, all 5 test good (out of socket with a DMM). I pulled and replaced all Jones plugs. Most look pretty shiny. Even thought the playfield has no lights, it sounds as though the bonus countdown is still in effect. I've never played Night Rider before, so I'm just guessing here.

1) Free advice? Drop it off at my place

2) Are you having a problem with the general illumination or the insert lighting?

Broken fuse holders are very common on Bally, more so on the 60's than 70's though.

Use a meter to check flow of power, don't depend on a fuse being good because it looks good.

Check the Jones plugs at the rear of the control board towards the rear of the cabinet. If memory serves me right there is three there and common to have a bad connection.

#9 6 months ago
Quoted from gdonovan:

1) Free advice? Drop it off at my place
2) Are you having a problem with the general illumination or the insert lighting?
Broken fuse holders are very common on Bally, more so on the 60's than 70's though.
Use a meter to check flow of power, don't depend on a fuse being good because it looks good.
Check the Jones plugs at the rear of the control board towards the rear of the cabinet. If memory serves me right there is three there and common to have a bad connection.

1) You've already got one!

2) Both. Entire deck. Backglass and coin door are fine. I used a meter - out of holder. Fuses check. Did break a tab on the 5 amp though. Ran the meter with fuse in on the holders; still getting current.

3) Jones plugs. Just cleaned 'em a little with a wire brush. Lowered the playfield, and of course it slipped a little as I have the apron off. Kinda slammed some. Now I've got no power. Yay!

So, back at it. I'll get a new fuse holder for the 5 amp as well.

#10 6 months ago
Quoted from RonSS:

1) You've already got one!
2) Both. Entire deck. Backglass and coin door are fine. I used a meter - out of holder. Fuses check. Did break a tab on the 5 amp though. Ran the meter with fuse in on the holders; still getting current.
3) Jones plugs. Just cleaned 'em a little with a wire brush. Lowered the playfield, and of course it slipped a little as I have the apron off. Kinda slammed some. Now I've got no power. Yay!
So, back at it. I'll get a new fuse holder for the 5 amp as well.

I suspect a dirty contact on a relay then. I'll look when I get home.

A friend of mine wants one and I won't give up mine, haa.

#11 6 months ago

So, I'm back to power and old light situation. I believe it has to do with the plug on the left near the score motor.

Time for more tinkering!

GD, thanks.

#12 6 months ago
Quoted from RonSS:

1) You've already got one!
2) Both. Entire deck. Backglass and coin door are fine.

Ok, good clue here that points towards the Jones plug.

General Illumination and front door are off one fuse.

Look at the Game Over Relay, a lot of lighting runs through there. Start a game and try fiddling with the relay and see if the lights flicker on.

#13 6 months ago

Well, I'm looking for it, but don't see that relay labeled.

I see it on my schematic, but I don't see the other near by units either...

Also, I've found the middle Jones in the head has a loose wire effecting behind the backglass. So I'm learning!

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#14 6 months ago
Quoted from RonSS:

Well, I'm looking for it, but don't see that relay labeled

Start a game, look for the one that clacks.

Dirty contact or even possible the wire popped off.

#15 6 months ago

Very fortunate on the backglass paint loss. Looks like it'll be an easy touchup after you clean and seal it with something. Night Rider is a great classic.

#16 6 months ago

Think I found the game over relay (right next to score motor?), but no matter what I jiggle, no lights.

Oh well, for another day. I'll find it eventually. I've got plenty else to work on with this project!

#17 6 months ago

And then you look at the same plug for the 15th time and realize it's dirty and needs some wire brush!

Still don't have all lights/inserts, but progress I'll take!

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#18 6 months ago

And then more lights as contacts came clean from use!

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#19 6 months ago

Pretty clean playfield as these were played hard. CPR makes new Playfields if you want one but yours looks like it will clean up well. Nice job getting it running again.

#20 6 months ago
Quoted from atpcfiaim:

Pretty clean playfield as these were played hard. CPR makes new Playfields if you want one but yours looks like it will clean up well. Nice job getting it running again.

I'm thinking I may just do a few minor touch ups and then auto clear. I'm thrilled its working so quickly! Thanks

#21 6 months ago
Quoted from atpcfiaim:

Pretty clean playfield as these were played hard. CPR makes new Playfields if you want one but yours looks like it will clean up well. Nice job getting it running again.

Playfield is better than average.

#22 6 months ago
Quoted from RonSS:

And then you look at the same plug for the 15th time and realize it's dirty and needs some wire brush!
Still don't have all lights/inserts, but progress I'll take!
[quoted image]

1) I use a brass brush and a piece of 3M scrubby pad used for automotive paint prep.

2) You already have done the steppers and didn't mention it but a good pro tip for Bally steppers. Do NOT use any petroleum based lube on the nylon sprockets, this will cause all sorts of trouble down the road. Just clean and buff up the surface they ride on and you should be good to go.

#23 6 months ago
Quoted from gdonovan:

1) I use a brass brush and a piece of 3M scrubby pad used for automotive paint prep.
2) You already have done the steppers and didn't mention it but a good pro tip for Bally steppers. Do NOT use any petroleum based lube on the nylon sprockets, this will cause all sorts of trouble down the road. Just clean and buff up the surface they ride on and you should be good to go.

Yeah, after going through that bowler a while back I learned a lot about lube/no lube.

I isopropyled the nylon shaft interior on the steppers and just lightly sanded and cleaned the shafts. I sanded/wired some rust off of the metal plungers, then gently oiled, and wiped off. I didn't want rust forming right away again. I didn't do a super job first go round, only wanted to see if I could free it up and get it going. I'm going back over them soon - full tear down. I'll be sure to avoid any oil to nylon intermingling.

I'd love new plungers & sleeves, but that's about $200 I don't want to spend right now if it's working as is.

Thanks for the help and tips. Keep them coming!

#24 6 months ago
Quoted from gdonovan:

Do NOT use any petroleum based lube on the nylon sprockets, this will cause all sorts of trouble down the road.

Very true. In certain situations I use Remmington Gun oil on metal to metal, but using on nylon
the nylon can/will swell and problems (especially close tolerance) will almost surely follow..
Inside nylon sleeves, a cue tip with Lemon Pledge. Metal sleeves I clean with a solution then
finish off with Lemon Pledge. Same with the plungers..
I'm presently working on another room for more machines. Before long the Night Rider will once
again be set up..

#25 6 months ago

White or pearl?

Thinking I would peroxide + sunshine these guys if white.

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#26 6 months ago
Quoted from RonSS:

White or pearl?
Thinking I would peroxide + sunshine these guys if white.
[quoted image]

White.

Been meaning to try peroxide myself one day, even have an old fish tank UV lamp kicking about.

#27 6 months ago

If you're trying it soon I'll send my stuff up to you...

#28 6 months ago

Ok, spent this morning removing posts, etc.

I'm a little nervous about getting things back correctly, so plenty of pics for me. Here's my deck now.

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#29 6 months ago

And, why not label some baggies while I'm at it? Let's keep this easy on the finish end.

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#30 6 months ago

Well, a little chilly, but let's see what this does.

I know it's not the 12%, but cheap is good. I've done small plastics before. Didn't totally clear them but definitely showed improvement.

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#31 6 months ago

Here we are after one day of sunlight. Around 45 - 50 degrees today.

I'll let them sit out again tomorrow.

Also worked on cleaning the playfield today.

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1 week later
#32 6 months ago

Aaannddd, we're back.

Well, the hydrogen peroxide didn't really give me the results I was looking for. Oh well, no real loss there.

Spent some time the past few days working on derusting some metal and fortifying the backbox.

I've got a bunch of plywood delamination going on, so lots of glue and clamps at work now.

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#33 6 months ago

Had a few nice days last week, so I got some backglasses triple thicked.

Night Rider had a little more flaking than I initially thought.

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#34 6 months ago

Penny for your thoughts on these inserts.

1) heat and level them. The decals will be fine.

2) drop some leveler on there. If you try to remove or adjust those they'll only look worse.

3) grab some clear circular labels and stick them on those. It's just a beat Night Rider.

4) something completely different.

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#35 6 months ago

I would try to level them if possible and put a sheet of Mylar over the center.

#36 6 months ago

Well, I was unhappy with the results of the 3 inserts I tried. I rolled a ball over all of them and it didn't seem to alter the path or jump and bump, so I'll probably just leave them or try some leveling agent.

I plan on clear coating the field anyway.

Decided, though not cost effective, nor truly deserving, that I would repaint this cab. I've never done one before, and I'm basically in this hobby to learn. I figure if it fails miserably, oh well, so long as it plays.

Here's my head. I'm using a stripper as I'm fairly certain this has lead.

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#37 6 months ago

Round 2.

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#38 6 months ago

Round 3.

Time to head over to the whiskey thread. This can wait til tomorrow, with more sauce and a brush to finish it up.

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#39 6 months ago

Switched up from using a 5 year old can of chemical stripper to a brand new bottle of Citristrip. Bam!
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#40 6 months ago

It's got that "far away" look.

Primer all set, I'll white it up in 30 minutes or so.

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#41 6 months ago

I did such a poor job on this I think it'll pass for factory!

It's all good though. It's 100% better than before. Plus the game wouldn't even play, so anything I do can only help I figure.

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#42 6 months ago

I was wondering what shade of red to go with. Took off the side rail.... there's my answer.

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#43 6 months ago

Gloss Sunrise Red Rust-o-ilium

#44 6 months ago

Thank you.

#45 6 months ago

So, my lock down is so snug it has to be forced down.

I was originally thinking the cab was separated. Looking at these corners I figured no brainer.

But when I look inside they appear tight.

Even with a clamp they don't really close much.

Thoughts?

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#46 6 months ago

Maybe take a thin blade/saw and try "cleaning the crack", then glue and clamp?

#47 6 months ago

How about bending the ears of the bar out, check to see if bent.

#48 6 months ago
Quoted from RonSS:

But when I look inside they appear tight.
Even with a clamp they don't really close much

That does look quite separated on the outside's top half.
If you have a small grinder that takes 4" disc, with a
zippy wheel (very thin disc) you can cut into the inside
(but not all the way to the outside) to make space so
it'll squeeze and close up the outside's gap.
For gluing small cracks as such, I place a stream of glue
in the corner, then with an air compressor and air nossel, I
I blow the glue so it travels deep in the crack.
Is both front outsides separated, or just the one side shown
in the pic?

#49 6 months ago

If you're going to repaint anyway and the seam is tight. Can't one just fill the gap with body filler and sand to a clean edge? Sorry if this is a crazy suggestion. Cab repaints aren't my area of expertise.

#50 6 months ago
Quoted from AlexF:

Can't one just fill the gap with body filler and sand to a clean edge?

I had machines that had a very rough life. I'd be lost without Bondo as a body filler, but here, I think
one of his concerns is that the lock down bar doesn't slip on. It's too tight..
I had machines with this same problem, but the gap always tightened up after clamping..

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