(Topic ID: 303903)

Centaur Light Issue (solved)

By SJ23

17 days ago


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  • 5 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 days ago by djblouw
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There are 54 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
#1 17 days ago

All of a sudden issue with the top 3 lights on PF always on. All other lamps test ok. Wires & bulbs looks fine. Any suggestions? Very new to fixing my pins so please dumb it down for me
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#2 17 days ago

Do you have a hood lamp driver board to swap out?

#3 17 days ago

Those lights are routed to/controlled by the aux lamp board. This is the one that is on the back of the light panel when you open the backbox.

Start by inspecting the board, and all connectors to make sure everything is fully seated.

#4 17 days ago

Thank you for the responses. I am on week 1 of learning how to fix my pins.

Quoted from djblouw:

Those lights are routed to/controlled by the aux lamp board. This is the one that is on the back of the light panel when you open the backbox.
Start by inspecting the board, and all connectors to make sure everything is fully seated.

Everything looks ok.

Quoted from Billc479:

Do you have a hood lamp driver board to swap out?

No, I don't.

Something new happening: the light on the far right (of those 3) goes out occasionally when the red pop bumper right below the light is hit. Not all the time, once in awhile. And sometimes stays off right when I power it on but then turns on solid when game is started.

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#5 16 days ago
Quoted from SJ23:

Something new happening: the light on the far right (of those 3) goes out occasionally when the red pop bumper right below the light is hit. Not all the time, once in awhile. And sometimes stays off right when I power it on but then turns on solid when game is started.

This is most likely just a flakey socket, since it sounds like it’s intermittent. We can tackle that issue later.

Yes, aux lamp board does t show any smoking guns. How does the main lamp board look ? It’s the one in bottom left of the back box.
Can you also get a pic of the mpu? Top left board in the back box. These are notorious for having a battery puke on the board and causing issues.

#6 16 days ago
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#7 16 days ago

Looks like you've got a corrosion issue on your MPU. It's hard to say where else it has spread to, but it should be addressed.

This may or may not be the cause of the lights staying lit, but it will be difficult to determine without taking care of it first.

Capture (resized).PNG

You've got a couple options:
-Clean the board yourself (consult pinwiki for details). This involves desoldering & soldering many items
-Swap out the MPU from another game you have (EBD, Lost World) to test. You'll need to swap the ROM too, located at U2
-Buy a replacement new MPU (they're good to have on hand for trouble shooting purposes, even if you fix the original)
-Buy a used MPU (they show up in the market quite often)
-Borrow a MPU for testing

#8 16 days ago

Swapping the MPU from my Lost World. Took Centaur's off and the back bottom is corroded, Lost World's looks great.

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#9 16 days ago
Quoted from SJ23:

Swapping the MPU from my Lost World. Took Centaur's off and the back bottom is corroded, Lost World's looks great.[quoted image]

That could be saved with enough time, effort, and skill. But, when a replacement is $160, you have to figure out if it’s worth it.

Have you put the lost world mpu in? Did the lights issue change?

#10 16 days ago

Here are the 2 boards. Back (top) is Lost World, front (bottom) is my original from Centaur. They look different- red wire from E4-E12. There's no ROM in U1 in original Centaur.

Am I leaving the U1 in? My Centaur board had nothing there.

Am I matching all the switches to my old Centaur board?

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#11 16 days ago

And...while I have you here...should I swap out the solenoid driver board too? Burn marks on my Centaur, Lost World's looks fine.

My Lost World has all kinds of other issues so it's basically a parts machine til I feel like getting her running. Centaur gets all the attention. Thank you very much for your help!

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#12 16 days ago

Without switching the U2 ROM, the 3 lights did not turn on like they were before. The game didn't play but it did turn on, some lights, etc. and the green light on MPU flashed. After switching U2 ROM, the green light flickered once and nothing turns on except lights on backbox

Can I keep this board in there (if I can get it working to this game)? Or should I buy a new MPU & Solenoid Board? I'm not confident enough to fix/solder anything yet.

https://allteksystems.com/products/ultimate-mpu-w-solenoid-driver-board-bundle

#13 16 days ago

You can't swap boards and expect the game to work, as you may be aware.
The majority of the 32 DIP switches are game specific.
The ROMS are different as are the jumpers needed to get the game working.

They are both -35 type mpu's so with some work it is possible to fix both mpu's as imo they don't look too bad, seen much worse.

Lots of information here :https://pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=Bally/Stern

#14 16 days ago

Sorry for slow response. After looking at the two mpu’s you’d have to swap some jumper for it to work properly.
The centaur mpu has been set to allow just one rom to be used, and the lost world is still using two.

If they were both set up for the same number of chips, you would still need to change all the dip switches to match.

#15 16 days ago
Quoted from SJ23:

And...while I have you here...should I swap out the solenoid driver board too? Burn marks on my Centaur, Lost World's looks fine.

That’s not too uncommon. It looks like it has been repaired. For the time, leave it, and if a coil isn’t working, we’ll address that at that time.

#16 16 days ago

The mpu board you linked will work. Altek makes a good board, and lots of places sell them.

Another option, for a little cheaper is here. This is a good board and works just the same:

https://nvram.weebly.com/bally---stern-pcbs.html

#17 16 days ago

the leaking battery acid damage will continue to spread on both boards unless tended to.

+1 to Weebly

#18 15 days ago
Quoted from djblouw:

The mpu board you linked will work. Altek makes a good board, and lots of places sell them.
Another option, for a little cheaper is here. This is a good board and works just the same:
https://nvram.weebly.com/bally---stern-pcbs.html

Thank you so much for your help. I'll order the new board. And thanks for not making me feel like an idiot I'm very, very new to fixing my pins. Trying not to call a tech for everything.

#19 15 days ago

djblouw Is this a problem waiting to happen? Should I do something about it or just leave it be?

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#20 15 days ago
Quoted from SJ23:

djblouw Is this a problem waiting to happen? Should I do something about it or just leave it be?
[quoted image]

No that’s like that from the factory. You can leave it.

On a side note: On the lost world mpu, is there a battery still attached (it will be at the bottom of the board). If it looks original, cut it off right now, before it kills the board, like the centaur mpu. Just take cutters and snip both ends, semi-close to the board. When you’re ready to tackle the lost world, you can replace the battery then.

#21 12 days ago
Quoted from djblouw:

On a side note: On the lost world mpu, is there a battery still attached (it will be at the bottom of the board). If it looks original, cut it off right now, before it kills the board, like the centaur mpu. Just take cutters and snip both ends, semi-close to the board. When you’re ready to tackle the lost world, you can replace the battery then.

Thank you. I am going to attempt to replace it with a remote battery pack - seems easiest for me to try.

#22 10 days ago

New alltek mpu board did not solve the light issue

#23 10 days ago

Are you up to testing the associated transistors on the auxiliary lamp driver board and if found faulty then replace them?
Q6, Q1 & Q12.
Have you tried reseating the connectors on the auxiliary lamp driver board?
Have you removed the auxiliary lamp driver board and checked header pins for dry/cracked solder joints?

What happens when you do the lamp test via the button inside the front door?
Do you hear a clicking of the solenoid expander board relay under the playfield?

Maybe consider a new aftermarket auxiliary and lamp driver board:

https://nvram.weebly.com/bally-stern-ldb.html
https://nvram.weebly.com/bally-aux-ldb--43.html

or
https://allteksystems.com/collections/pinball-replacement-board-products/products/auxiliary-led-lamp-driver-board-for-as-2518-52
https://allteksystems.com/collections/pinball-replacement-board-products/products/ultimate-led-lamp-driver-board

#24 10 days ago
Quoted from Rikoshay:

What happens when you do the lamp test via the button inside the front door?

The 3 lights at the top stay on. One light inside a bumper flickers. Two other lights on pf don't turn on at all (bulbs look fine).

Quoted from Rikoshay:

Do you hear a clicking of the solenoid expander board relay under the playfield?

No clicking.

Quoted from Rikoshay:

Have you tried reseating the connectors on the auxiliary lamp driver board?
Have you removed the auxiliary lamp driver board and checked header pins for dry/cracked solder joints?

Yes. All of the connectors looks great, no darkening/burns, all solder joints looks fine.

#25 10 days ago
Quoted from Rikoshay:

Are you up to testing the associated transistors on the auxiliary lamp driver board and if found faulty then replace them?
Q6, Q1 & Q12.

Not sure...maybe if I find a beginner's video or something to walk me thru it.

#26 10 days ago
Quoted from SJ23:

New alltek mpu board did not solve the light issue

Well, that's not necessarily unexpected. But know we know that the MPU is good. What we don't know is if the connectors are good. Or the aux lamp driver.

So the aux lamp driver board controls these lights, and some others:

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Both of the slingshots, both pop bumpers, and the chamber feature (top left corner of the pf) lights are controlled by the aux board.

Once the game fully boots up, what do the chamber lights do? And sling lights? And pop bumper lights? What do they do once you start a game?

#27 10 days ago
Quoted from djblouw:

Well, that's not necessarily unexpected. But know we know that the MPU is good. What we don't know is if the connectors are good. Or the aux lamp driver.
So the aux lamp driver board controls these lights, and some others:
[quoted image]
Both of the slingshots, both pop bumpers, and the chamber feature (top left corner of the pf) lights are controlled by the aux board.
Once the game fully boots up, what do the chamber lights do? And sling lights? And pop bumper lights? What do they do once you start a game?

Chamber lights are either off or barely flickering (up until now I didn't even notice that there were lights along the queens chamber-oops). Sling lights flickering or off. Pop bumper off.

The aux board looks good & so do connectors but I'm guessing that's what wrong then?

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#28 10 days ago

U1 is known to fail.
Aux. board ground is known to fail.
1) make sure +5 volts and board Gnd. have good solid connections.
-- and clean continuity.
If all good then, at times, U1 is bad.
2) replace IC U1 MC14013.
3) at times I have also had to change one of the MC14555.

#29 10 days ago

Not that this is causing the issues, usually a lamp won't light if there is a dry solder joint, but I definitely see dry joints on both connectors.

A lengthy read but very informative read: https://www.pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=Bally/Stern

Regarding the clicking of a relay....I misinformed you, sorry.
The solenoid expander board relay under the playfield is driven by the Q11 transistor on the solenoid driver board, not the lamp driver like in other games.

#30 10 days ago
Quoted from vec-tor:

U1 is known to fail.
Aux. board ground is known to fail.
1) make sure +5 volts and board Gnd. have good solid connections.
-- and clean continuity.

Tests good. 5.14

Quoted from vec-tor:

U1 is known to fail.
2) replace IC U1 MC14013.
3) at times I have also had to change one of the MC14555.

Recommendation on where to get these?

#31 10 days ago

Before changing any components I suggest reflowing your header pins with solder.

Even if you do swap out components those dry solder joints need to be addressed.

#32 10 days ago
Quoted from Rikoshay:

Before changing any components I suggest reflowing your header pins with solder.
Even if you do swap out components those dry solder joints need to be addressed.

So for someone who is still in the practicing phase of learning soldering...a new aux board then?

#33 10 days ago
Quoted from SJ23:

So for someone who is still in the practicing phase of learning soldering...a new aux board then?

Most likely, if you’re not into board repair. But it still may not fix it. It could still be corroded connectors.

So if you buy a new aux lamp board, and it still occurs, you’ll have to re-pin the connectors. Not a tough job, just need a crimped (you’re welcome to borrow my spare)

But yes, next step would be new aux lamp board. (Sorry, pinball isn’t very cheap if you can’t repair everything)

#34 9 days ago

So you have a soldering iron station or even a cheapy, and some solder just to try out on your auxiliary driver board headers?

#35 9 days ago

For learning, this situation is ideal imo.

You would just be heating up the solder joined to the pin until you see it melt and add a little solder, remove your soldering tip from the pad/pin and let it cool.

Again, I don't believe a 'stuck on' light is the result of a dry solder joint, but where you have lights that are intermittent it should fix it.

#36 9 days ago
Quoted from djblouw:

Most likely, if you’re not into board repair. But it still may not fix it. It could still be corroded connectors.
So if you buy a new aux lamp board, and it still occurs, you’ll have to re-pin the connectors. Not a tough job, just need a crimped (you’re welcome to borrow my spare)
But yes, next step would be new aux lamp board. (Sorry, pinball isn’t very cheap if you can’t repair everything)

Actually just today learned how to re-pin connectors with my new crimper & YouTube. Thanks for the offer to lend tho!

Good thing I got a great deal on my pins/arcades bc you're right, it's not cheap! But my games are all 40 years old & have been neglected awhile. I'll try to resolder the aux board myself, if I kill it then I guess I'll get a new one.

#37 9 days ago
Quoted from Rikoshay:

For learning, this situation is ideal imo.
You would just be heating up the solder joined to the pin until you see it melt and add a little solder, remove your soldering tip from the pad/pin and let it cool.
Again, I don't believe a 'stuck on' light is the result of a dry solder joint, but where you have lights that are intermittent it should fix it.

These? I'm just adding, not desoldering with a wick or sucker, correct?

20211118_185704 (resized).jpg
#38 9 days ago
Quoted from SJ23:

Actually just today learned how to re-pin connectors with my new crimper & YouTube.

Awesome. Good job!

Quoted from SJ23:

These? I'm just adding, not desoldering with a wick or sucker, correct?
[quoted image]

Yea those are the ones. Just reheating the current solder and adding a little. Technically the proper way is to remove the old, and replace. But reheating and adding will be sufficient for now.

#39 9 days ago

For example, the right hand side bottom pin and top pin you can see a circle in the solder around the pin, as in the left hand side 4th pin from the bottom, there are more.

That circle is a break in the solder connecting to the pin, there must be solid contact between the solder pad, solder and the pin.

These 'dry joints' can occur from the header pin being moved/having pressure put on repeatedly from removing the connector on the other side.

#40 9 days ago

There are dry joints on the second and third pins from the bottom on the right hand side, but these are not used as the don't have a trace connected to them.

Where you don't see a trace connected to a pin is where I suggest you try out repairing the dry joints.
This way you will see what is going on but don't have to worry about applying too much heat/solder as it won't ruin the trace pad, if that makes sense?

Upon applying the solder tip to the solder and pin you will see the solder change in colour slightly as it melts.
Adding a little fresh solder, it will 'join' to what is there, ideally creating a new fresh join.
As the new solder is joined you remove the soldering tip from area and you're done.
Depending on the solder you have you may notice fumes coming off, this is flux that helps the metals join, ideally don't breathe it in, also it may leave a brownish residue there, this can be removed when cool with methylated spirits.

#41 9 days ago
Quoted from Rikoshay:

There are dry joints on the second and third pins from the bottom on the right hand side, but these are not used as the don't have a trace connected to them.
Where you don't see a trace connected to a pin is where I suggest you try out repairing the dry joints.
This way you will see what is going on but don't have to worry about applying too much heat/solder as it won't ruin the trace pad, if that makes sense?
Upon applying the solder tip to the solder and pin you will see the solder change in colour slightly as it melts.
Adding a little fresh solder, it will 'join' to what is there, ideally creating a new fresh join.
As the new solder is joined you remove the soldering tip from area and you're done.
Depending on the solder you have you may notice fumes coming off, this is flux that helps the metals join, ideally don't breathe it in, also it may leave a brownish residue there, this can be removed when cool with methylated spirits.

Thank you very much for the detailed instructions! I'm going to give it a try tomorrow.

#42 9 days ago

djblouw is there a place in GR to get a selection of molex connectors? Or just online?

#43 9 days ago

I attempted to fix the dry solder joints. Reinstalled the board. The queens chamber lights flicker brighter now but still same issues with all the problem lights. So new aux board then?

#44 9 days ago

regarding the flickering......are there original incandescent globes or LED's installed?

#45 8 days ago
Quoted from SJ23:

djblouw is there a place in GR to get a selection of molex connectors? Or just online?

Just online. I can float you a couple if needed, but they’re good to have available.

When the game is on, if you wiggle the connectors (on aux lamp board, and mpu) does the lights change? Of course, please be careful.

#46 8 days ago
Quoted from djblouw:

Just online. I can float you a couple if needed, but they’re good to have available.
When the game is on, if you wiggle the connectors (on aux lamp board, and mpu) does the lights change? Of course, please be careful.

Thanks for the offer, very kind of you. I'll just order a bunch, I'll probably have to re-pin most of my machines. Getting impatient not being able to play any right now

I'll try the connectors tomorrow.

#47 8 days ago
Quoted from Rikoshay:

regarding the flickering......are there original incandescent globes or LED's installed?

Original

#48 6 days ago
Quoted from djblouw:

When the game is on, if you wiggle the connectors (on aux lamp board, and mpu) does the lights change? Of course, please be careful.

No change when wiggled.

#49 6 days ago

in the pic in #4 of the 3 light sockets, the ones remaining on.....can you please upload close up pics of lamp sockets showing the wire connections to the sockets and the braid to the sockets?

it's probably just the pic but it looks like the ground wires are touching the bus wire?

also you could remove the globes and using your multi meter check for resistance/continuity between the two tabs on each socket.

if you are unfamiliar with using a multi meter to check for continuity/resistance please upload a pic of your multi meter (if you have one) and I'll explain.

#50 5 days ago
Quoted from SJ23:

No change when wiggled.

So, it's looking like the aux lamp board has a address issue. It's either coming one of the chips has failed, or it's not getting the data correctly. The first would be remedied by a new aux lamp board. The second would be by re-pinning the connectors, and reflowing the headers.

There are 54 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.

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