(Topic ID: 292031)

Capt Fantastic Bonus hesitation


By fb_rider

23 days ago

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  • 34 posts
  • 8 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 10 days ago by fb_rider
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

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#1 23 days ago

After fixing a few minor issues, my Capt Fantastic is working "fantastic"!

But I have one remaining item that I wanted to get some advice on:
When collecting bonus at the end of each ball, there is some hesitation on racking up the bonus points. This is not 100% consistent, but seems to happen about every 3000 bonus points - it seems to hesitate for one bonus advance, then continues. It happens on regular or double bonus, but still seems to give you the correct total of bonus points.

I don't seem to remember this happening on other Capt Fantastic machines I've played, but wanted to run it by you all.

Thanks in advance for any advice!

#2 23 days ago

So I have been playing my Capt Fantastic a lot, and I think you are experiencing the "300 and 3 bonus advance" scenarios. This def has a little bit of a pause, since it is counted by the score motor.

Basically "300pts and 3000 bonus" when the top saucer is lit and hit, as well as the bottom right flipper return inlane.

Single bonus (1000 points) should seem quick, and these are added when the rollovers on the top right of the playfield is lit.

Hope that helps.

#3 23 days ago

Thanks for the response, but this happens after the ball drains when collecting bonus. I think you are describing something that takes place during game play.

#4 23 days ago
Quoted from fb_rider:

After fixing a few minor issues, my Capt Fantastic is working "fantastic"!
But I have one remaining item that I wanted to get some advice on:
When collecting bonus at the end of each ball, there is some hesitation on racking up the bonus points. This is not 100% consistent, but seems to happen about every 3000 bonus points - it seems to hesitate for one bonus advance, then continues. It happens on regular or double bonus, but still seems to give you the correct total of bonus points.
I don't seem to remember this happening on other Capt Fantastic machines I've played, but wanted to run it by you all.
Thanks in advance for any advice!

Maybe the bonus switch on the score motor is not making contact on every revolution? But I'm really shootin in the dark.

#5 23 days ago

Hard to know what you're describing without video, but even when working correctly the bonus count does not have a consistent cadence due to the score motor pulses it uses:
Capt. Fantastic Bonus Count (resized).jpg
On a regular bonus count the 1000 points and chime are fired by the #2 cam which sends out groups of 5 pulses with a consistent gap between groups. On a double bonus the #9 cam is used instead which sends out pairs of pulses with inconsistent gaps between the pairs.

If you're not hearing these patterns I wonder if the teeth on your score motor cams are worn. Closing the gap on the relevant cam switch might compensate for that.

/Mark

#6 22 days ago

Thanks for the info. I have a video but don't see a way to post it?

#7 22 days ago

I usually upload to YouTube and then copy the link to a post. Easiest way.

#8 22 days ago

Are you talking about the double bonus at 3:05 in this video?

Basically at double bonus it is going "ding ding, ding ding........ ding ding, ding ding......." but yours will randomly take longer in between some of them so it is out of rhythm? The string of ...... will take longer sometimes.

My Flip-Flop is doing the same thing.

Our single bonus sequence is much different but double seems to be about the same so I am going to assume we have the same issue.

Mine will eventually make all of the dings it is supposed to and will score the proper bonus but sometimes it has to think in between them which sounds like what you are describing. To me there is a switch somewhere that is just slightly out of adjustment so that when it is supposed to be open or closed, it is not so everything cycles again and then finds it where it is supposed to be and continues scoring the bonuses.

#9 22 days ago

They sounds exactly like what I'm experiencing. Let me see what I can do on the video

#10 22 days ago

Sorry I can't be of much help other than helping describe the issue. I have been meaning to dig into mine but haven't as of yet. I saw your post and realized we might have the same problem on a different machine from the same era.

#11 22 days ago

Here's what I'm talking about

#12 22 days ago
Quoted from fb_rider:

Here's what I'm talking about

Hmm..ok that is odd. My guess is that there are some dirty leaf switches on one of your cams on the score motor. Therefore, taking a few times for it to register and cause the delay

#13 22 days ago
Quoted from fb_rider:

Here's what I'm talking about

Since it happens on single and double bonus and yet it is giving you the correct points, I would think the score motor is struggling or slipping but still successfully completing it's cycle. When you knock a drop target down for 500 pts, is the cadence also unusual? How about when you reset the game - do the score reels reset with the non-uniform cadence?

#14 22 days ago

It looks like you have 2 issues. (1) The playfield Bonus indicator doesn't count down smoothly, and (2) The bonus doesn't award 1000s smoothly.
They're probably related but let's start with #1
Inspect and diagnose this circuit with Alligator clip jumper wires
http://www.planetimming.com/Pinball/troubleshooting/EM%20Troubleshooting.pdf
http://www.pinrepair.com/em/index3.htm#features
Example of a pinsider actually doing this https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/red-baron-tech-question#post-5858156

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#15 22 days ago
Quoted from sudsy7:

Since it happens on single and double bonus and yet it is giving you the correct points, I would think the score motor is struggling or slipping but still successfully completing it's cycle. When you knock a drop target down for 500 pts, is the cadence also unusual? How about when you reset the game - do the score reels reset with the non-uniform cadence?

On my Flip-Flop, scoring for any in-game events there are no issues, everything seems to be in time with no delays. Same with resetting the game, it will spin all the score reels to zero with everything seeming to be in time and uniform.

fb_rider's Captain Fantastic may be a different story so please do not rule out these potential issues on his machine which was the original problem in question until he responds.

I am not going to be able to work on mine for a day or so but will report what I do and what I find.

#16 22 days ago

Thanks for all the info everyone. Yes all of my normal scoring and reel reset is normal. It's only when collecting bonus after the ball drains.

I'm somewhat new to EM machines, but I've done pretty well getting everything else working correctly. Just to make sure, the scoring motor is the one in the bottom of the cabinet front left side, correct? There's also some type of bonus mechanism attached to the underside of the playfield on the middle right - could that be part of the issue as well?

#17 22 days ago

Is the score motor spinning properly during that bonus countdown? Meaning the RPM is constant and it is not binding up?

I would look at the gaps on all the score motor switch stacks and make sure they are clean and gapped properly. Take a schematic copy and look at all the score motor switches on the copy and circle them. Then go to the motor and switch stacks and look at each one and make sure the are normally open or normally closed and the right gap distance.

I'm not terribly far away from you and would be willing to help if my schedule allows.

#18 22 days ago

Manually add some bonus using the bonus stepper, Then push the switch where the ball drains, The score motor will run, watch cam 2 and see if the game is counting down the same time the cam is hitting the switches. Do the above this time run your finger across lane A & B to get dbl. bonus going then watch cam 9 do it thing. Countdown of the bonus stepper should be in time with the score motor hitting the switches. Get your fingers in there, watch how things work. It's all about the switches making contact. Look at the schematic also, it will start to make since. I'm not at all that proficient at fixing EM's but, As MarkG would say "they are fun". You'll get it.

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#19 21 days ago
Quoted from fb_rider:

Thanks for all the info everyone. Yes all of my normal scoring and reel reset is normal. It's only when collecting bonus after the ball drains.
I'm somewhat new to EM machines, but I've done pretty well getting everything else working correctly. Just to make sure, the scoring motor is the one in the bottom of the cabinet front left side, correct? There's also some type of bonus mechanism attached to the underside of the playfield on the middle right - could that be part of the issue as well?

So if the score motor is running smoothly, then it is most likely the bonus circuit, and as HowardR pointed out, specifically the Bonus Unit Reset Solenoid circuit. If all the circuit switches (Bonus Score Re., A Re., B Re., 2B SCM) check out good (clean contacts, check gap, and verify continuity when closed), then look at the unit itself. Yes, that is the bonus unit on the underside of the playfield. The unit has 2 solenoids on it - the Reset solenoid is the one furthest away from the playfield. You can manually step it up and down (with the power off), and I suspect you will find it is sticking on the way down (Reset solenoid). These units notoriously gunk up after 40+ years and the entire unit requires rebuilding to get their "snap action" back. It might also not quite be assembled correctly or have a weak spring or otherwise be out of adjustment in some way. Another possibility is that both of the solenoids on the bonus unit are energizing simultaneously intermittently (due to a short) which would have the same result as a sticking Reset (no decrement).

#20 21 days ago

thanks again for all the help!

I'm probably not going to have time to look at this until late next week, but I will post an update once I've had a chance to check everything out!

#21 20 days ago

So I was able to spend about an hour working on it Thurs night. The count up/count down on the bonus wheel works great manually, but doesn't always fire when counting down in game play. The score motor seems to work well, but there definitely some slop in the joint that connects the gear box to the shaft with the cams. I watched, cleaned, and adjusted switches on cams 2 and 9 with no change. Double bonus seems to work pretty well, the issue seems to mostly be single bonus. I learned a lot but no fix yet.

What fires the count down solenoid?

#23 19 days ago

Thanks I'm going to need to take some time studying this when I get back in town next week.

#24 15 days ago

OK, Update after doing some investigation on the Flip-Flop machine...

Everything looks to be operating properly on the score motor and on the bonus unit. Looking at other relays, the bonus score coil is releasing when the bonus cadence is delayed then will energize and bonus will continue. That coil looks to be in good shape. Looking at what controls that coil, the bonus zero coil appears to be very burned. I have noticed a very loud buzz when playing that doesn't appear until second ball and verified that this coil is the one making the noise, you can feel it when you touch it and if you gently knock on it you can change the intensity of the buzzing. It is actuating its switches but I think it is weak and maybe not holding the switches together strong enough. If I run the end of ball bonus while holding this coil in the energized position, it fixes the problem. If I run it again without holding it, the problem comes back. If you check resistance, this coil is supposed to be 78 ohms, I am getting less than 10. I am next going to look at all of the switches on this relay and see if an adjustment helps at all and then plan to replace the coil (which I plan to do regardless if the switch adjustment helps). While checking other coils for sanity of the low reading I was getting on the bonus zero, I also found my lock coil is also burned up looking and at sub-10 ohms versus its 105 ohm rating so I will be replacing that one as well.

fb-rider, unless the thrill of the chase is calling you, you may want to take a look at your bonus zero coil on Captain Fantastic. I just held the switches in the energized position by holding a piece of wood against the plastic piece that actuates the switches when the coil is energized to fix the issue showing an issue with this coil and or switches.

#25 15 days ago
Quoted from SJFalls:

If you check resistance, this coil is supposed to be 78 ohms, I am getting less than 10.

Not sure if you know this or not, but you can't measure the resistance of a coil when it is installed in a machine and have any faith that the result is accurate. You have to desolder one leg of the coil.

#26 15 days ago
Quoted from sudsy7:

Not sure if you know this or not, but you can't measure the resistance of a coil when it is installed in a machine and have any faith that the result is accurate. You have to desolder one leg of the coil.

Thank you for the tip. That was in the back of my mind which is why I was sanity checking with other coils (still not right but trying to answer by comparison)- was getting much closer measurement to the ratings on those. I will pull a wire and check them again though.

I am generally pretty good at releasing the smoke that electrical circuits run on so digging in to troubleshoot an EM is not necessarily in my wheelhouse. I'm not intimidated but not very confident either.

#27 13 days ago

Funny you wrote this post. This is exactly what I've been doing this morning with exactly the same results. I'm just having difficulty figuring out what holds that relay closed. On my machine it's coil number 13. It says bonus on the label on not sure what else - it's too hard to see.

Once one of us figure this out I think we'll both be able to fix our machines!

#28 13 days ago

ok IT's FIXED

Basically the switch on the bonus stepper unit that tells the relay to stay closed wasn't making good contact. To me, it looked like it was backwards at the "points" weren't facing each other. I took it apart, turned it around, and put it back together. Then adjusted it and everything works like it should. Maybe I didn't need to turn it around, but cleaning and adjusting it the way it was wasn't working. Here are before and after pics:

switch 1 (resized).jpgswitch 2 (resized).jpg
#29 12 days ago
Quoted from HowardR:

It looks like you have 2 issues. (1) The playfield Bonus indicator doesn't count down smoothly, and (2) The bonus doesn't award 1000s smoothly.
They're probably related but let's start with #1
Inspect and diagnose this circuit with Alligator clip jumper wires
http://www.planetimming.com/Pinball/troubleshooting/EM%20Troubleshooting.pdf
http://www.pinrepair.com/em/index3.htm#features
Example of a pinsider actually doing this https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/red-baron-tech-question#post-5858156
[quoted image]

I'm sure this is a dumb question, but what are the numbers in the rectangles on the schematic, like 31-1, 52-4, etc?

#30 12 days ago
Quoted from fb_rider:

what are the numbers in the rectangles on the schematic, like 31-1, 52-4

pasted_image (resized).png
#31 11 days ago

Perfect, thanks!

#32 11 days ago

I'm bound and determined to get a better perspective on these schematics. I printed them out and taped them together poster style

printed out schematics (resized).jpg
#33 10 days ago
Quoted from fb_rider:

I'm bound and determined to get a better perspective on these schematics.

Good for you. You might want to read through these topics to get a better idea of how things work. Not necessarily specific to your game, but in general:

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/em-schematic-fully-described-from-beginning-to-end-bally-bon-voyage
https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/em-pinball-machine-complete-circuit-description-2-bally-monte-carlo

There are also plenty of other topics in the EM forums with schematic snippets and explanations that should be helpful.

/Mark

#34 10 days ago

Great info, thanks!

Put a bunch of games on the Capt. last night and everything works great!

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