Cleaning and Waxing Pinball Machines - Vid's Guide

(Topic ID: 137689)

Cleaning and Waxing Pinball Machines - Vid's Guide


By vid1900

3 years ago



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  • 298 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 days ago by pinballinreno
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    Topic index (key posts)

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    There are 1475 posts in this topic. You are on page 25 of 30.
    #1201 10 months ago
    Quoted from RatShack:

    Check out the drain subways and ball trough

    Good point, I mean outta sight outta mind, like tray under your fridge? How often is it cleaned.

    Which reminds me, is your refrigerator running?

    #1202 10 months ago
    Quoted from RatShack:

    Check out the drain subways and ball trough and give them a quick cleaning. My first machine did the same thing.

    What is a drain subway and how do I get to it?

    #1203 10 months ago
    Quoted from flynnibus:

    Just dirt in general - this is what happens when games get played
    Clean and inspect balls if they haven't been... but even clean balls will do this over time.

    and what do you guys think of using a small amount of car detail spray to clean with?

    #1205 10 months ago
    Quoted from zgusto:

    and what do you guys think of using a small amount of car detail spray to clean with?

    Worse idea ever.

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/cleaning-and-waxing-pinball-machines-vids-guide/page/2#post-2657083

    #1206 10 months ago

    This might be a stupid question, but.... how do you wax the playfield? I've read tons of debate on what to use and how often, but unless I missed it (I didn't read all 25 pages, but did read a good number of them), I didn't see a how to video or explanation. I tried looking at YouTube but didn't see anything there either. As someone who ha's never waxed a car or a pin or anything else... help?

    I have a T2 and MET if that matters (doubt it does).

    Thanks!

    #1207 10 months ago

    To cut down on the noise, filter to just vid's posts (click on the person silhouette between the post number and the time of the post): https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/cleaning-and-waxing-pinball-machines-vids-guide/page/1?tu=vid1900 That'll help pull out the more useful posts.

    This post and the few that follow it might be what you're after: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/cleaning-and-waxing-pinball-machines-vids-guide/page/9#post-2734047

    #1208 10 months ago
    Quoted from zgusto:

    Great thread, but slightly overwhelming! Hoping I can get some help here, as my searches and reading, have left me dizzy.
    I have a beautiful HUO Indy 500 I just bought. The problem, is I am playing the shit out of it and have yet to clean or wax it! I am getting dark lines down the right hand lane that gets the ball on every opening shot and some other wear areas.
    My questions.
    Basic cleaning. How often and with what? Just a micro fiber?
    Waxing. How often and with what? My time is limited, what is the easiest but most effective waxing?
    Thanks to all in advance!

    Wipe the balls to clean them
    Wipe the turbo out
    Remove the apron and wipe the trough
    Wipe ramps
    And when you are ready to work on the game remove the ramps so you can clean the orbits

    Basically the game builds up dirt and will keep tracking it around like that until you keep up the cleaning
    And if I recall indy500 is black sling shot rubbers. Change those to silicon or white and you'll have a lot less dirt. Black rubber generates more dirt...

    #1209 10 months ago

    I think old black rubbers can cause that too.

    #1210 10 months ago
    Quoted from ajfclark:

    To cut down on the noise, filter to just vid's posts (click on the person silhouette between the post number and the time of the post): https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/cleaning-and-waxing-pinball-machines-vids-guide/page/1?tu=vid1900 That'll help pull out the more useful posts.
    This post and the few that follow it might be what you're after: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/cleaning-and-waxing-pinball-machines-vids-guide/page/9#post-2734047

    Nice, I hadn't seen the filter function before - thanks!

    I missed the waxing post as well, but I still have a question - it says to use 1/8 teaspoon and then swirl it on the playfield, doing "small sections at a time." I'm probably overthinking this (which is one of the things vid said to avoid!), but how big an area? I'm assuming it's 1/8 teaspoon per area, so how much should be expected to be used overall?

    Like I said, I should probably just do it and see what happens - worst case scenario, I just take it off and do it again, so...

    #1211 10 months ago
    Quoted from Fezmid:

    it says to use 1/8 teaspoon and then swirl it on the playfield, doing "small sections at a time." I'm probably overthinking this (which is one of the things vid said to avoid!), but how big an area? I'm assuming it's 1/8 teaspoon per area, so how much should be expected to be used overall?

    An 1/8 of a teaspoon will probably do 30% of the playfield.

    Make the thinnest coating, that will give 100% coverage.

    When in doubt, use less wax. It's obvious when you need more on your rag.

    #1212 10 months ago
    Quoted from flynnibus:

    Wipe the balls to clean them
    Wipe the turbo out
    Remove the apron and wipe the trough
    Wipe ramps
    And when you are ready to work on the game remove the ramps so you can clean the orbits
    Basically the game builds up dirt and will keep tracking it around like that until you keep up the cleaning
    And if I recall indy500 is black sling shot rubbers. Change those to silicon or white and you'll have a lot less dirt. Black rubber generates more dirt...

    Much appreciated!!

    #1213 10 months ago

    Thanks for all the help Vid et al..!!

    No silicone!
    Ordered paste wax (even though I have some for my cars)
    Novus 1 and 2
    Micro vacuum kit.

    Love forums. I use them for my car collecting and gas and oil collecting as well!

    Merry Christmas!

    1 week later
    #1214 9 months ago

    Thanks for the guide, Vid! Using the details here, I cleaned and waxed my T2 and MET and it turned out great. I didn't take the playfield apart, so it could be better, but for the first time, I'm happy. The games are a lot smoother (and faster) now -- sometimes on T2, it feels like the ball is launching through the ramps back to the flippers!

    I also learned a lot more about each playfield by getting down and dirty. For example, I didn't realize there's mylar in a strip in front of the mystery hole on MET or by the pops and a couple of other places on T2. Learning!

    Next up I have to install the chrome decals that I received from the Pinside Secret Santa! (https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/official-2017-pinside-secret-santa-participants-thread)

    1 week later
    #1215 9 months ago

    Wow a cleaning thread! This is exactly what I need and a big thanks to vid1900 who has been super helpful with his awesome guides.

    I have a rarish sample machine : http://www.hassellcastle.com/cvsample.htm

    As there was less than 3k produced and apparently less than that kicking about now and considerably less sample models , i wish to be careful.

    The sample models used "decals" on the playfield and later painted them in production. My playfield though dirty is in very good condition and has original decals all over it.

    As I'm learning how to clean I wish to be careful with these decals and possible lifting or damage.

    Currently I was planning on using white spirit on a microfiber for a basic clean and then novus 2 on white paper towel and then a rag for wax.

    Does anyone see any issues with this and is it suitable for these decals ?

    Thanks

    #1216 9 months ago
    Quoted from BallyWilliams:

    Wow a cleaning thread! This is exactly what I need and a big thanks to vid1900 who has been super helpful with his awesome guides.
    I have a rarish sample machine : http://www.hassellcastle.com/cvsample.htm
    As there was less than 3k produced and apparently less than that kicking about now and considerably less sample models , i wish to be careful.
    The sample models used "decals" on the playfield and later painted them in production. My playfield though dirty is in very good condition and has original decals all over it.
    As I'm learning how to clean I wish to be careful with these decals and possible lifting or damage.
    Currently I was planning on using white spirit on a microfiber for a basic clean and then novus 2 on white paper towel and then a rag for wax.
    Does anyone see any issues with this and is it suitable for these decals ?
    Thanks

    I wouldn't use paper towel. Aside from anything else it leaves lint everywhere and vid1900 says not to:

    Quoted from vid1900:

    Use Novus2 - with a soft cloth (not paper towel), polish out any scratches. Polish out the ball trails in the inlanes. Keep the cloth rotated to clean sections, and keep it moist with the Novus2.

    The post that came from is probably quite relevant: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/cleaning-and-waxing-pinball-machines-vids-guide/page/3#post-2660463

    #1217 9 months ago

    Vid, wading through the thread again and looking for clarity on waxing brand new NIB home use only games.
    Seems some new collectors can get a bit too obsessive on the subject from what I read including supplies, protectors and waxing everything out of the box.
    Been thinking 500 or so plays I’m still ok on a brand new clear coat from factory vs. an older or routed game.
    Am I on track here or way off the rails?

    #1218 9 months ago

    I wax any game I own, clearcoated or otherwise. I love the way the ball moves when it's got so little friction against the playfield. Less fiction would mean less wear too, right?

    #1219 9 months ago
    Quoted from Vino:

    Vid, wading through the thread again and looking for clarity on waxing brand new NIB home use only games.
    Seems some new collectors can get a bit too obsessive on the subject from what I read including supplies, protectors and waxing everything out of the box.
    Been thinking 500 or so plays I’m still ok on a brand new clear coat from factory vs. an older or routed game.
    Am I on track here or way off the rails?

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/cleaning-and-waxing-pinball-machines-vids-guide/page/21#post-3529168

    #1220 9 months ago

    Thx for clarification Law

    #1221 9 months ago
    Quoted from Vino:

    Thx for clarification Law

    Yeah I think it comes down to what's the harm vs time etc etc. I mean...why not if you have it.
    Funny that post mentions a NIB MET which I had and never waxed, and it was totally fine. But hey you have the wax laying around I just do it now.
    And I, like you, am not obsessed with getting a machine and wrapping everything in bubble wrap so it's safe.

    #1222 9 months ago
    Quoted from Vino:

    Been thinking 500 or so plays I’m still ok on a brand new clear coat from factory vs. an older or routed game.
    Am I on track here or way off the rails?

    Just like a car, wax it as soon as you get it.

    (and before somebody posts the wisdom of "you got to let a car's paint dry for 6 months...bla bla bla...." that has not been true for 40 years)

    #1223 9 months ago

    Paper towel is fine for cleaning and waxing, but for Novus2, it's safer to use a cloth.

    #1224 9 months ago

    Yeah, it’s about balance, I don’t tend to get too obsessive but always wanted to ask. I’ll go ahead and bust out the grand over the three day wknd. Thx guys!

    #1225 9 months ago

    Use bright lights over the play field when waxing. Take your time and polish ALL the applied wax. It helps to see crevices and using various picks and clean cloths helps around tight spots.
    Its called detailing for a reason. Address every detail, built up wax in post grooves, under ramps, close to rail anchors, it all adds up.
    Really the most fun task of the whole pinball experience. Besides playing.

    #1226 9 months ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Paper towel is fine for cleaning and waxing, but for Novus2, it's safer to use a cloth.

    Thanks for this clarification.

    Any thoughts anyone on the playfield decals ?

    #1227 9 months ago
    Quoted from BallyWilliams:

    Any thoughts anyone on the playfield decals ?

    I have a CV that has the Ringmaster Defeated decal on the center insert. As long as you use Novus 2 or wax you'll be fine. Just don't use anything that can loosen adhesive like GooGone or naptha.

    #1228 9 months ago
    Quoted from schudel5:

    I have a CV that has the Ringmaster Defeated decal on the center insert. As long as you use Novus 2 or wax you'll be fine. Just don't use anything that can loosen adhesive like GooGone or naptha.

    Thanks for that. I was planning on using white spirit (naptha) to clean the entire playfield first. So should i just use novus on the decals.

    #1229 9 months ago
    Quoted from BallyWilliams:

    Thanks for that. I was planning on using white spirit (naptha) to clean the entire playfield first. So should i just use novus on the decals.

    Novus2 and 3 are abrasives - DO NOT use them on decals.

    #1230 9 months ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Novus2 and 3 are abrasives - DO NOT use them on decals.

    Thanks For that

    But if I can't use white spirit on decals but they're still dirty...and novus is an abrasive ....how do we clean playfield decals ?

    #1231 9 months ago

    I'd have to see a close up picture of the decal in question.

    #1232 9 months ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    I'd have to see a close up picture of the decal in question.

    Like this ? These are originals decals as part of the sample machine which also has many other variants.

    CollageMaker_20180114_202213096 (resized).jpg

    #1233 9 months ago

    You are not really going to be able to clean or polish those decals.

    They are fragile, and if you get solvent near the edges, they could start to peel up.

    Clean around them - carefully.

    If that were my game, I'd get a clear playfield overlay to protect the whole thing.

    http://bayareaamusements.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=GS-CV-PF-PROTECTOR

    #1234 9 months ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    You are not really going to be able to clean or polish those decals.
    They are fragile, and if you get solvent near the edges, they could start to peel up.
    Clean around them - carefully.
    If that were my game, I'd get a clear playfield overlay to protect the whole thing.
    http://bayareaamusements.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=GS-CV-PF-PROTECTOR

    Ahh I thought so. Thanks for heads up. But ill still need to clean first before putting on a cover right? So i guess I'll clean it first then consider such a cover.

    White spirit / then novus / then wax.
    Gentle around decals.

    #1235 9 months ago
    Quoted from BallyWilliams:

    White spirit / then novus / then wax.
    Gentle around decals.

    You can skip the Novus; the protector will be glossy all by itself.

    #1236 9 months ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    You can skip the Novus; the protector will be glossy all by itself.

    I googled and asked elsewhere and didnt get anywhere so maybe you'll know. You say protector. Do all 90s + pinball come with a protector on the playfield? Is this what they call Mylar And if so when does it need replacing? (Presumably with what you kindly linked me to).

    #1237 9 months ago

    The playfield protectors are Markolon, not Mylar.

    They don't glue down, so you can remove them in 20 years if it wears out.

    #1238 9 months ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    The playfield protectors are Markolon, not Mylar.
    They don't glue down, so you can remove them in 20 years if it wears out.

    So how do you know if it's worn out...does it peel ? And Mylar seems to be what they sell in pin shops so is that what you put over worn out Markolon?

    Ps I must say your knowledge is astounding (to me) and I for one thank you for sharing it!

    #1239 9 months ago
    Quoted from BallyWilliams:

    So how do you know if it's worn out...does it peel ? And Mylar seems to be what they sell in pin shops so is that what you put over worn out Markolon?
    Ps I must say your knowledge is astounding (to me) and I for one thank you for sharing it!

    Mylar is soft and pliable. CDs and DVDs are made of polycarbonate which is a little less soft and a little less pliable than Mylar. Lexan is a trade name for polycarbonate and is produced by Sabic Innovative Plastic. Makrolon, another polycarbonate trade name, is produced Sheffield Plastics Inc.

    Mylar from the pin shops is adhesive backed. Stick it down and you will have to scrape it off or peel it up if you want it gone.

    Imagine your entire play field covered with a large enough CD or DVD that also has been trimmed to fit your play field. It is as hard as nails. You lay the poly down on top of your play field and if you ever tire of it, you lift it off. In a pinball application it is generally not going to wear out.

    #1240 9 months ago
    Quoted from BallyWilliams:

    So how do you know if it's worn out...does it peel ? And Mylar seems to be what they sell in pin shops so is that what you put over worn out Markolon?
    Ps I must say your knowledge is astounding (to me) and I for one thank you for sharing it!

    It would have a hole through it if it's worn out.

    Never happen in a home use game.

    #1241 9 months ago

    I have simple green, novus 123 , paper towels and Terry cloths.

    I wanted blitz wax but it's not availble right now.
    Is Mothers Carnuba wax an acceptable alternative?

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/MOTHERS-Brazilian-Carnauba-Cleaner-California/dp/B0002U1TVW

    And when I have a wax... is this video a fair demonstration for a beginner:

    #1242 9 months ago
    Quoted from BallyWilliams:

    I have simple green, novus 123 , paper towels and Terry cloths.
    I wanted blitz wax but it's not availble right now.
    Is Mothers Carnuba wax an acceptable alternative?

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/MOTHERS-Brazilian-Carnauba-Cleaner-California/dp/B0002U1TVW

    And when I have a wax... is this video a fair demonstration for a beginner:
    » YouTube video

    #1243 9 months ago
    Quoted from BallyWilliams:

    I have simple green, novus 123 , paper towels and Terry cloths.
    I wanted blitz wax but it's not availble right now.
    Is Mothers Carnuba wax an acceptable alternative?
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/MOTHERS-Brazilian-Carnauba-Cleaner-California/dp/B0002U1TVW
    And when I have a wax... is this video a fair demonstration for a beginner:
    » YouTube video

    The Mother's wax you have shown is not what you want. you linked to the cleaner wax.

    This is what you want. Look at the cans carefully.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/MOTHERS-05550-Brazilian-Carnauba-California/dp/B0002U2V1O/ref=sr_1_sc_2?s=automotive&ie=UTF8&qid=1516108417&sr=1-2-spell&keywords=mother%27s+carnnauba+waX

    #1244 9 months ago
    Quoted from cottonm4:

    The Mother's wax you have shown is not what you want. you linked to the cleaner wax.
    This is what you want. Look at the cans carefully.
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/MOTHERS-05550-Brazilian-Carnauba-California/dp/B0002U2V1O/ref=sr_1_sc_2?s=automotive&ie=UTF8&qid=1516108417&sr=1-2-spell&keywords=mother%27s+carnnauba+waX

    Ahh yes but Amazon has no stock. I'll try ebay thanks.

    What about the video. Is rhat representative of a new first clean for a beginner ?

    #1245 9 months ago

    I have a police force where someone removed the mylar on and its defiantly in players condition. Some exposed wood areas etc. I plan to restore it one day (just not right now) so I cleaned it as best as I could without damage and want to put wax on the playfield to somewhat protect the very fragile paint. My question is will putting Clear Paste Wax on the raw paint/exposed wood pose a contamination issue down the road when I am ready to restore and clearcoat? I know in your restoration guide Naphtha is used to remove old wax etc but what if its in the wood/existing swirls etc?

    #1246 9 months ago
    Quoted from BallyWilliams:

    I have simple green, novus 123 , paper towels and Terry cloths.
    I wanted blitz wax but it's not availble right now.
    Is Mothers Carnuba wax an acceptable alternative?
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/MOTHERS-Brazilian-Carnauba-Cleaner-California/dp/B0002U1TVW
    And when I have a wax... is this video a fair demonstration for a beginner:
    » YouTube video

    PInball Life has Blitz:
    https://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=4292

    #1247 9 months ago
    Quoted from BallyWilliams:

    Ahh yes but Amazon has no stock. I'll try ebay thanks.
    What about the video. Is rhat representative of a new first clean for a beginner ?

    There are 4 buying options on the Amazon UK site. Only Amazon is out of stock. There are 3 other buying options but I will allow that they do ont offer free shipping. Man, your UK shipping prices are a bitch.

    #1248 9 months ago
    Quoted from cottonm4:

    There are 4 buying options on the Amazon UK site. Only Amazon is out of stock. There are 3 other buying options but I will allow that they do ont offer free shipping. Man, your UK shipping prices are a bitch.

    You're telling me! Even our cleaning kits are half the size for more money!

    #1249 9 months ago
    Quoted from BallyWilliams:

    I have simple green, novus 123 , paper towels and Terry cloths.
    I wanted blitz wax but it's not availble right now.
    Is Mothers Carnuba wax an acceptable alternative?
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/MOTHERS-Brazilian-Carnauba-Cleaner-California/dp/B0002U1TVW
    And when I have a wax... is this video a fair demonstration for a beginner:
    » YouTube video

    I'm a noob at this and the thought of using an electric polisher seems a bit extreme.

    #1250 9 months ago
    Quoted from Langless28:

    I have a police force where someone removed the mylar on and its defiantly in players condition. Some exposed wood areas etc. I plan to restore it one day (just not right now) so I cleaned it as best as I could without damage and want to put wax on the playfield to somewhat protect the very fragile paint. My question is will putting Clear Paste Wax on the raw paint/exposed wood pose a contamination issue down the road when I am ready to restore and clearcoat? I know in your restoration guide Naphtha is used to remove old wax etc but what if its in the wood/existing swirls etc?

    If the paint is fragile then you better wax it.

    If the paint wears off, you will have a much harder time restoring it.

    If it was an uncommon game, I'd even suggest you put a sheet protector over the entire thing.

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