Classic Bally Stern Clear Buttons - Vid's Review

(Topic ID: 137196)

Classic Bally Stern Clear Buttons - Vid's Review


By vid1900

3 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 46 posts
  • 15 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 2 years ago by Onevox
  • Topic is favorited by 18 Pinsiders

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    There have been 19 images uploaded to this topic. (View topic image gallery).

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    #1 3 years ago

    John Zitterkopt (Yes, the alt-universe Star Trek guy) from www.Pinball-Mods.com came out with some new CLEAR flipper buttons for Classic Bally, Classic Stern, Chicago Coin, and Gottlieb games.

    He has over a dozen colors that look great on the web, but how do they perform in person?

    Let's find out....

    19736644476_7889859c1e.jpg

    #2 3 years ago

    First, we have to get the old ones out.

    If this is your first time, remove and install one at a time - you'll see why latter.

    Remove the top screw from the Flipper Switch.

    Loosen the lower screw.

    2.jpg

    #3 3 years ago

    Swing the Flipper Switch out of the way.

    Now is a great time to file the switch contacts clean and smooth; for maximum flipper power and responsiveness.

    With the switch out of the way, the old button comes out with just 2 screws in the retention plate.

    3.jpg

    #4 3 years ago

    Here is the new button next to the old one.

    There is no coiled spring like a Williams button. The switch blades themselves provide the tension.

    Polish up the old metal backing plate for maximum Reflectivity.

    4.jpg

    #5 3 years ago

    Here is the length of a worn original button.

    6.jpg

    #6 3 years ago

    Here is the length of the new ones.

    Even accounting for wear, the new ones are taller/ longer.

    5.jpg

    #7 3 years ago

    Side by side you can see that the body is deeper and the plunger is longer.

    This is not a problem at all, but be aware that you may need to shim back your flipper switches to have the exact same "feel" as the old ones.

    7.jpg

    #8 3 years ago

    Now it does not make much sense to have clear flipper buttons if you can't light them up. I mean, all the cool kids are doing it.

    But unlike the clear buttons on a Williams game, the Backing Plate would block 95% of the light.

    So we need to drill a hole in the plate.

    Drill a hole in the plate big enough to allow all the light to shine through from a Flexi-LED, but not so large that the metal plate shorts out the LED contacts.

    8.jpg

    #9 3 years ago

    Install your now drilled Backing Plate over the new Button.

    Don't tighten the plate too hard or you will crack the plastic. Use common sense and just snug it down.

    Because the new Button's plunger is longer, you may have to shim the Switch Base backwards, so the Switch is not locked on, and you maintain that same Bally spring feel. That is why you want to leave the old switch installed so you have a "feel" to reference.

    Back in Bally School, they taught us the flipper switches should make contact in the firs 20% of their travel, the rest of the motion is a "cleaning motion" as the contacts rub together.

    9.jpg

    #10 3 years ago

    Here you can see the FlexiLED shining through the hole in the backer plate.

    http://www.cometpinball.com/product-p/1smdflex.htm

    The socket is a #44 "Laydown Socket".

    http://pbresource.com/sockets.html

    The wires run to the Coindoor GI Circuit for power.

    Details on all the above here:

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/vids-guide-to-lighted-flipper-buttons-for-418

    10.jpg

    #11 3 years ago

    Here is the final installation.

    These buttons operate smooth, none of the stickiness that some of the Williams clear buttons sometimes exhibit.

    Nice job on the molds to make these things, fit is perfect.

    Highly recommended.

    11.jpg

    #12 3 years ago

    Here are the other colors the buttons are available in:

    http://pinball-mods.com/oscom/product_info.php/products_id/11/osCsid/caf32de3f2b1644e41d38f490e72ccbf

    19058205343_e43aabec41.jpg

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    #13 3 years ago

    Nice work Vid. Now, when you converting that Vector to a Hammer of the Godzzzz pin?

    rd

    #14 3 years ago

    Badass. Vector!!!

    #15 3 years ago
    Quoted from rotordave:

    Nice work Vid. Now, when you converting that Vector to a Hammer of the Godzzzz pin?

    Too late now. I would have had to have installed purple buttons.

    #16 3 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Too late now. I would have had to have installed purple buttons.

    True that.

    rd

    #17 3 years ago

    PBR sells a this Gottlieb strap that i will probably use instead of drilling a hole, unless convinced otherwise.

    gtb-a13898+.jpg

    Exciting. Can't wait to put green illuminated buttons on my Surf Champ.

    #18 3 years ago
    Quoted from brandsilence:

    PBR sells a this Gottlieb strap that i will probably use instead of drilling a hol

    Wonderful solution!

    Zit should stock a bunch of those to sell along with the buttons.

    #19 3 years ago

    One of those is clear. The rest are translucent.

    #20 3 years ago

    I just got in an assortment of these buttons and I am installing some tonight. The quality on these is excellent. They have a nice glossy surface, no air voids and a great color selection.

    #21 3 years ago

    Dammit. Now I gotta buy a bunch of these and light them up.

    #22 3 years ago

    I installed a set in my xenon last night. Like Vid said, the center post is too long so your switch stack needs to be shimmed. I find that disappointing, why not make them exactly like the originals to avoid things like this. That being said, once installed they look and feel great. I like the face of them, its more concave than the originals and has a better feel.

    #23 3 years ago

    That struck me as being a bit odd too.

    Guess they made a mistake when they were taking measurements.

    #24 3 years ago

    Thanks for the review Vid. I was considering putting some of these in my Stars project.

    #25 3 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Even accounting for wear, the new ones are taller/ longer.

    Quoted from indypinhead:

    That struck me as being a bit odd too.
    Guess they made a mistake when they were taking measurements.

    Damn - Had forgotten about this during the design phase.
    This was done on purpose. Apparently there were two different buttons sold under the same part number. Or maybe a Bally vs Gottlieb difference. During development; I used the PBR NOS Red Translucent as the model the project. These match the NOS PBR Translucent poles. Then I found out that the older opaque buttons had a shorter pole. In my games; there were using the Red Translucent so didn't give it any thought.

    I opted to use the longer pole for great compatibility with all games. As Vid stated; you can shim or cut down the longer pole. In my case; I just bent the flipper switches to accommodate. I'll update the product web page to note this difference.

    Quoted from vid1900:

    Wonderful solution!
    Zit should stock a bunch of those to sell along with the buttons.

    Already part of the plan; just need to get some material and some laser cutter time at Techshop.

    BTW: The original product development thread is here.

    #26 3 years ago

    nice write up vid.

    been looking for those for a long time, i really like the purple one, those will look good on bally playboy. i'd be in for a set that's for sure.

    #27 3 years ago
    Quoted from Riptor:

    Like Vid said, the center post is too long so your switch stack needs to be shimmed. I find that disappointing, why not make them exactly like the originals to avoid things like this.

    You can quickly sand them down with some 120grit, but I would think that I would rather leave them longer and just pull the shims/washers out as the plastic wears away.

    If you have a bunch of those switch stack spacers from some broken switches, 2 is all you need per side.

    Or buy them @ .16 cents each if you don't have any washers or broken switches.

    gtb-a463.jpg

    #28 3 years ago
    Quoted from beatmaster:

    nice write up vid.
    been looking for those for a long time, i really like the purple one, those will look good on Bally Playboy. i'd be in for a set that's for sure.

    Lt purple if that is the one your talking about is a limited edition. Won't be restocked unless there is massive demand

    #29 3 years ago
    Quoted from Zitt:

    Lt purple if that is the one your talking about is a limited edition. Won't be restocked unless there is massive demand

    i'd be fine with the other one also, if the Lt purple is available i'd go with this one first.

    *** just made an order for two sets *** thanks.

    #30 3 years ago

    Looks like i will be placing an order soon too!

    #31 3 years ago

    Clear Straps are now in stock:
    http://pinball-mods.com/oscom/product_info.php/products_id/38

    Note added to product page about the longer pole. Thanks for keeping me honest, Vid!

    #32 3 years ago

    Mine arrived today ,thanks mate
    should of bought more

    #33 3 years ago

    Just placed a big order to update all my Classic Bally games!

    Rob Bell
    Robsgameroom.com

    #34 3 years ago

    So you did... guess I need to get off pinside and actually pack it.

    #36 3 years ago

    Packed; labeled; and will go out tomorrow.
    Appreciate the confidence. Looking forward to seeing pictures of them installed one day. ;D

    #37 3 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Here you can see the FlexiLED shining through the hole in the backer plate.
    http://www.cometpinball.com/product-p/1smdflex.htm

    Is there an LED like this that has adjustable brightness? I'm going to install these I all of my games, but I'm not a fan of the super bright light look. I would like them illuminated, but softly.

    #38 3 years ago

    I'm not aware of any single currently on the market with adjustable brightness.
    You could always wait for my Radiant Button project... hopefully will be in stock by the end of Sept.
    But they will be expensive compared to a single bulb.

    #39 3 years ago
    Quoted from MrBellMan:

    Is there an LED like this that has adjustable brightness? I'm going to install these I all of my games, but I'm not a fan of the super bright light look. I would like them illuminated, but softly.

    Just move the flexi over the hole and create an eclipse.

    Then you can vary the brightness to any level that suits you

    #40 3 years ago

    Except I also bought the clear straps. I'll figure something out. I will just need to defuse them with something. Thanks!

    #41 3 years ago
    Quoted from MrBellMan:

    Except I also bought the clear straps. I'll figure something out.

    Still not a problem.

    Simply bend the flexi closer and closer to the edge of the button, until you find the proper illumination.

    #42 3 years ago
    Quoted from MrBellMan:

    Is there an LED like this that has adjustable brightness? I'm going to install these I all of my games, but I'm not a fan of the super bright light look. I would like them illuminated, but softly.

    Just move the bulb further away.

    Or instead of the flexi type, experiment with different "normal" LEDs at different angles.

    All my lighted flipper buttons are normal LEDs, simply because I have 1000 4 LED bulbs here and no flexis. You can get all sorts of brightness levels just by mucking around with the angle of the bulb. I use the longer holders, same as the Bally SS ones.

    Vids setup would be much brighter than anything you could do with this setup though. But when you live 10,000 miles away from the closest LED or bulb socket retailer, you gotta make do with what you got ...

    rd

    #43 3 years ago

    Ya'll ran me out of stock of the clear straps tonight... so I had to do another laser cutting run.
    Back in stock.

    I also added Smoke/Transparent Acrylic straps to the store tonight in limited quantities. I testing to see if anyone wants to use the smoke acrylic straps to darken any LED light. I'll post pictures of the strap; probably tomorrow night.
    strap smoke

    1 week later
    #44 3 years ago

    received my order from john today and it's already installed in my bally playboy, ordered 2 sets and i went with the clear ones with a pink flexible led. looks very good, hard to capture leds with a camera but looks perfect in person.

    great product, and don't forget to get the clear straps also, works perfectly.

    thanks for making this.

    bob.

    early_ss_clear_flipper_button.jpg

    early_ss_clear_flipper_button_on.jpg

    Playboy_early_ss_clear_flipper_button_on.jpg

    #45 3 years ago

    Cool Beans! Marked one image NSFW given I am sitting in the lab waiting on source code to compile.

    4 months later
    #46 2 years ago

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