(Topic ID: 229232)

Captain Fantastic (Home version) Issues

By Nikrox2

8 months ago

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  • 40 posts
  • 5 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 6 months ago by Nikrox2
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#1 8 months ago

Hello- just picked up an old Captain Fantastic (Home Version) – head lights up, playfield lights up, flippers work (front two bumpers go off when the flippers do), and ball retrun solinoid works – but nothing else. No game start, no score (player and ball lights seem burnt out) , no sounds…like the cpu is shot, but when looking at the power supply board, one of the small black”thingys” (yeah, I don’t have a clue) is burnt/broken. Its next to the little blue “thingy”..l(which the cover on it has broken off as well) ol
But as it’s burnt and from reading, it looks like this is where I should start in this endeavor, rather then the cpu board? Can someone look at this photo? I'm looking into one of the links to get my power supply board swapped out, but does this look like a minor fix? Or bite the bullet and pay the $50-60? Then I may still need to get the cpu fixed or replaced? Are there more than one place to get the power supply board repaired or replaced ? As usual any and all help is appreciated ! Thanks

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#2 8 months ago

Well after further reading (great stuff on here !) I found out my little black thingy is an 18 volt regulator 78L 18 and the little blue thingy was a Tantalum 47uF 35v capacitor. And while I’m there the two large cylindrical thingys were also capacitors 35v and 16v. So got on line and ordered all quickly and should have later this week. Least I can do is switch these out and see if that’ll work. Wish me luck!

#3 8 months ago

Remember, electrolytic and tantalum capacitors are polarized. Make sure you are installing them correctly. Same goes for the voltage regulator.

Here is some repair info:


Here's a picture of a rebuilt series 2 power supply board you can compare to:


#4 8 months ago

Thanks Ken ! I’ve used your info to get this far! The small black thingy looks like the flat part goes toward the heat sink. The two large ones have positive markings. What about the tantalum capacitor ? How do I know which way that is positioned?

#5 8 months ago

The most common point of failure on the power supply is the diodes on the left side of the board. Often one or more of them shorts out. You'll need a multimeter with a diode checker setting to test. Good news is the replacement diodes are cheap. I recommend a larger diode replacement if that indeed is the case.

Here is a great video from TNT showing how they brought a similar Bally home game to life in an afternoon.

#6 8 months ago

Thanks. I also found the identification on the tantalum so know which way this goes In Now Parts are to be here Thursday. Wish me luck ! I’ll post back here on Friday !

#7 8 months ago

You'll need a good magnifying glass to read the markings on a dipped tantalum capacitor. The printing and polarity markings are very tiny.

#8 8 months ago

Luckily I have a friend in It and he’s going to do the switch out for me. The possibility of success just went up 100%! lol

#9 8 months ago

Well while waiting for the electrical parts to come in it gave me time to clean her up a bit . While driving back from picking her up i got on line and purchased the tune up kit (I can hear the groaning now but i don’t do enough of these to buy bulk. So far each machine is from a diff mfr anyhow- but that’s another topic here). Anyhow amazing amount of dirt on the playfield all cleaned and waxed all new rubber.(old stuff was like marshmallows) All new bulbs ya know the easy stuff (but I love that. Takes the stress from the day job away). So she’s looking good and just needs some power. Lol. Just hoping the fix there will be it - but I’m prepared for cpu issues. We'll see!

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#10 8 months ago

Neat game, if you can't get it working let me know. I'd like to buy it for a charity project restoration and use. Tx.

1 week later
#11 8 months ago

Well after some delay (why do they always ship the wrong parts when you pay extra to get them faster? Lol). Anyhow the power supply is back together. I’ll plug it all back together this evening with high hopes of it coming back to life! I’ll keep those interested updated. Thanks!

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#12 8 months ago

Ok the power supply seems to be working but game not functioning. After it’s first plugged in the flippers work but when they go off the front bumpers and the side bumpers go off and seem to stay on for too long. Humming. Then shut down I think it’s flipping one of those little red breakers (?). each flipper activates the cooresponding bumpers simultaneously Start isn’t working no display of any type no sounds. Or activation of any switch besides the flippers. Checked for stuck switches but all seem ok. Hope this gives enough explanation ? As usual any and all help is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

#13 7 months ago

Hope everyone ate enough turkey, now on to peculuiar things - I’ve attached some photos. If anyone can look at these at let me know if you see anything suspect. Again to refresh - picked up machine in storage for over 20 years. Cleaned changed all bulbs and rubbers. Rebuilt the power supply board. Lights up cab and playfield. Can’t get it to start Can get the flippers to work but it keeps flipping a breaker (circuit interrupter ?). Any and all help or words or wisdom is appreciated!

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#14 7 months ago

Check for a shorted diode on power supply board.

#15 7 months ago

Will do thanks Ken

#16 7 months ago

Ken got my elect support man here lol. Do you also have the output per pin listing ?

#17 7 months ago

He thinks we found the problem. Zero out put on the 5v reg Trying to reset that. Fingers crossed !

#18 7 months ago

Ok. Weird. It was shorting out thru the screw mount to the heat sink

So now we have it all working points. Start game music switches.

Only issue the left bumper solinoid activates on power up. It has power to the solinoid full time. Until it gets hot and pops the breaker. Checked switches they’re ok.

Amy suggestions ?

#19 7 months ago

Solenoid driver transistor must be bad for that coil.

#20 7 months ago

That’s one on the board in the head correct? We traced it down to there. But he’s said he’s only seen them fail catostrphically (as in blow apart). The one we’re thinkg (well all of them) look fine nothing showing. Can they go bad without blowing apart? Could be the issue then?

#21 7 months ago

Just glad it’s finally starting and runnning points with all the music playing ! Got me that far thank you ! I’ll keep at this one

#22 7 months ago
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#23 7 months ago

Thinking it’s the one closest to the light bulb? Bottom left corner of this photo

#24 7 months ago

The board is out of the cab laying upside down so that may skew things. Here’s a couple more to show the blue conductor from the solinoid to the board in the head then traced it to that transistor. But he’ll i could looking at the wrong board even lol

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#25 7 months ago

Now I know why I loved EM’s when I first got into this hobby (addiction?). But as with those I’m learning. From you even my friend here at the house so thanks!

#26 7 months ago

Here's a picture of of the layout of series 2 cu boards:


Yes it is the driver transistor (S3) next to that lamp socket.


3 weeks later
#27 7 months ago

Finally got both the power board and the cpu board back yesterday. Had one transistor bad and also had that quirky short on the heat sink on the power board. We added a smaller sink to resolve that issue. I will try to install them later today. I’ll post an update later.

#28 7 months ago

Both boards back in and connected. Looks and sounds like it’s all working as it should. The right flipper works but is really weak? Won’t even get the ball back up the playfield Possible Causes?

After driving several hours and back to get this one and then all the work getting it going again , I’m a little disappointed. Home pins aren’t that interesting and very weak overall (sounds lights play).

Someone should have warned me! Lol. Newbie lesson learned

But good experience nonetheless and for one working again. It’s a success anyway I look at it.

Thanks again to all who helped!

#29 7 months ago

If you get tired of it, I would be a buyer as think it would be perfect to little kids to kick around on.

#30 7 months ago

Make me a decent offer and I’m coming thru Columbus Christmas Eve noonish I can deliver to add to the deal

#31 7 months ago
Quoted from Nikrox2:

Make me a decent offer and I’m coming thru Columbus Christmas Eve noonish I can deliver to add to the deal

Ha, I am now on the way to NC for the holidays! PM me and maybe we can work out a desk when I get back.

1 week later
#32 6 months ago

Latest update on my Captain....

Power Board and CPU in and working

Right Flipper - weak ,but I changed out the sleeve which helped some. Will be doing a rebuild over the weekend. I know, the hours and cost I have in this machine are more than it's worth, but I like these machines to work as close to 100% as possible, no matter the value of the machine.

Two Pop Bumper skirts started to chip away (they are pretty old plastic) - so ordered those and will also change out over the weekend.

Now for the questions/issues - the left kicker (photo and earlier issues listed above) - after the boards are back in, if I plug in that solenoid, it kicks a circuit breaker. If I disconnect it, and then just touch the conductor to the solenoid tab, it fires. The blades on the switch are open, and when I push on either switch, it then connects and I hear the chime and points add (so it's not stuck on as far as I can tell??)

The right kicker, even though it's plugged in, and when I push on those switches, I again hear chimes and see points, but no kicker happens?

Are these two items related? Any ideas, comments or suggestions?

Again, not the most valued game I know, but no matter. They all play better when they work like they should. Just want to make this one right. Selling it or not, it should be 100%.


#33 6 months ago

Transistor S3 controls left slingshot and transistor S4 controls right slingshot.

#34 6 months ago

Thanks Ken! Are those symptoms of them gone bad?

#35 6 months ago

It could be.

#36 6 months ago

Will do. Thanks!

#37 6 months ago

Well, looking at the board now, my friend helping me on the power supply rebuild (that now works!) helped also on the original transistor replacement. It was S3 that was to be replaced. Then when looking at it, he actually changed S2...lol

So now I will have him install these two, and hopefully we'll be back in action. ( I bought 10 of them, so we have extra!)

Another question - I also noticed the "left target" not scoring or any audio when the switch is activated. Is this a switch issue, or perhaps another transistor acting up? As I have the other transistors, and someone to install them, I'm hoping it's something like that, but think it may be a bad switch? Let me know your thoughts....please? Thanks!

I have changed out the sleeve, and coil stop on the right flipper, which solved about 50% of the weak flipper issue. I have the full rebuild kit due in, so I'll replace the linkage and spring to see if that does it. If not, then I'll also change out the EOS Switch while I'm in there.

On that EOS Switch - I noticed the metal tab that actually separates the switch blades to make them open, has cut a small slice out of the "paper blade" (??) so when it rotates to open the blades, it's actually directly hitting the metal blade...could that me the whole issue and should have just changed that first? (I've tried to do as others here state, fix only what's needed, so the full rebuild I was try to keep away from, but looks inevitable)

#38 6 months ago

Another Update on the captain -
Transistors in and left kicker now working great. Right kicker still out. Traded leades with the left and it appears the coil is bad (plastic wrapping on outside looks like it’s been heated and shrunk (took out coil and will replace)

Flipper - for a newbie I tried to only fix as needed but I learned here to go ahead and do the full rebuild with the EOS switch. New spring , arm, sleeve , etc and that’s back in action.

The target issues was the switch is one directly soldered to the board thru little tabs. When the ball strikes the target it pulls it away from the board. Pulled it back into place , resolderd tip , but more importantly wedges a small piece of wood between the edge of the switch body and the board. This puppy won’t move again

Now all working except this one coil on the kicker

And I have to take back what I said about the home pin games. With both kickers out and one flipper at 10% and one target out. It just wasn’t much fun.

Fixed the above , set the level right and this thing is a true pinball machine again. Sure the heads smaller and the playfield isn’t exotic , nor the sounds but hey it’s not bad!

And I learned so much off just this one machine. May keep it now! Lol

#39 6 months ago

Had “The Wiz” look at the coil. Seems to be good by the meter , I’ll put it back in and see what else there may be?

When we switch the conductors to the other kicker - it works fine - so the switches and transistor are working if it can activate the other kicker.

And when we put the conductors from the wrong kicker this one doesn’t work.

Thought the only thing left was the coil ?

Any ideas on this one?

#40 6 months ago

Well, cleaned everything and reinstalled the coil and just like that it's working again. I think it was the connection, these instead of soldered joints, it has spade connectors and the power lead was very loose. So when reinstalling, I made sure this one was tightened up and just like that, she's working again.

Another newbie item - the two pop bumper skirts or aprons were cracking (old plastic getting hit by the ball from the rebuilt flipper! So I checked and thought hey, only $1 each, I'll go ahead and do those as well. OMG, you have to take the complete pop bumper off, and to do that you have to disconnect the light fixture inside, and let's just say my big hands have cut knuckles this morning putting all those two back together - but it does look so much better now!

So - 2 nice strong flippers, 2 strong kickers, 2 pop bumpers (that look new again) - and all switches & lights working, leveled the game to a good slope and wow! I now have a very nice working machine again.

And yes, I know this isn't a pro model or sought after title, but I've learned a lot off of this machine, so for the hours spent, it was well worth it.

Just glad to have another one that was lost to the garage dust monsters coming back to life and able to be enjoyed once again.


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