(Topic ID: 137689)

Cleaning and Waxing Pinball Machines - Vid's Guide

By vid1900

6 years ago

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    Post #51 A list of pretenders. Posted by vid1900 (6 years ago)

    Post #77 Wax Recommendation Posted by vid1900 (6 years ago)

    Post #1237 Playfield protectors Posted by vid1900 (3 years ago)

    Post #1954 Opening a jar of blitz Posted by vid1900 (11 days ago)

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    #709 5 years ago
    Quoted from sethbenjamin:

    I just found this thread only *after* stripping down the playfield on a Sorcerer a friend of mine just bought. I'm doing all the rebuilding of pops and flippers, etc. for him. The game was dirty as hell, so I though, great, I'll bust out the Mill Wax as a first wave of cleaning.
    Now I find out it's made with silicone and, if I understand correctly, any chance of a future clearcoat job has now been defeated.
    So, moving on from that sad disappointment...I have been using Butcher's Wax on my games for a while, as it seems to offer lasting protection and really makes the games play super fast as well. Is there anything wrong with using it? I'll move on to Blitz when I need to buy more, but seeing as I'm constantly throwing money at these games, I'm inclined to use up the Butcher's that I have before investing $30 to try out a different wax. On the other hand, if it's really REALLY better or if Butcher's is somehow problematic, I'd welcome hearing about it.

    Don't worry about silicone on the PF. There are removers now to get most of it off later on if necessary. Also additives for the clear coat to help with silicones. Its not perfect but its not the first time silicones have had to be addressed on auto paint.

    As far as wax, Some of us are using this:

    Collinite's 845 Insulator wax
    amazon.com link »

    ITs not too expensive, easy to apply and leaves no white residue.

    2 weeks later
    #749 5 years ago

    Everyone should have a Future Spa in their collection. If anything, just for the amazing pornographic artwork.

    #764 5 years ago

    409 eats star posts.
    For an over the counter cleaner its dangerous sh#t.

    1 week later
    #783 5 years ago
    Quoted from jyeakley:

    I saw someone else post about this earlier...this stuff is amazing. Expensive, but no abrasives or additives and leaves no marks. Highly recommended:
    P21S Concours Carnauba Wax Combo Pack amazon.com link »

    Its what I use now. Ill never go back to blitz.

    #785 5 years ago
    Quoted from Spelunk71:

    Do you guys use this on both modern clear coated playfields and older games?

    I use it on everything. It has vastly reduced or zero white dust to vacuum out and is very easy to use, and put down the thinnest coats.

    4 weeks later
    #829 5 years ago
    Quoted from Luzur:

    What is your opinion about this one?
    Only "pinball" wax available here in Sweden except Mill Wax bottle.

    I think you can get P21S in Sweden.

    #840 5 years ago

    Gee and I thought P21S silver at $54 was expensive....

    amazon.com link »

    But its actually 100% carnauba

    #866 5 years ago
    Quoted from Nokoro:

    It seems like every time I wax my WOZ machine with Blitz, it loses that waxy feel pretty quickly, whereas when I wax my Stern Star Trek, it keeps it for months. I know this is probably a dumb question, but is there something about different clear coats that would make one feel more waxy than the other (or one wear off faster than the other)?

    I used to use Blitz, then it became hard to get, So I picked up some P21S 100% pure carnauba from amazon (silver can).
    I really like it. Goes on like butter, dries fast, leaves no white dust flakes. Buffs hard a nails, incredible shine.
    The JJP factory uses mist and shine as a final detailing on all the pins. I have that also, but its not a wax. I only use it for quick touchups if I take off the glass. Its a lot like a slightly heavier novus 1, works on plastics and ramps too.

    #871 5 years ago
    Quoted from Nokoro:

    Did you have the problem I described with Blitz where it seemed to wear off quickly? If so, is P21S any better?

    Fair point. I believe I read earlier that naptha is safe with mylar, correct?

    Your game is too new to need any serious cleaning.
    I didnt do a serious shop job on my WOZ until I had 2000 plays.

    In my experience, wax has to take hold. 3 or 4 waxings over time, not all at once.
    I think this is because of surface oils and such like vid says.

    The thinner the wax the better more effective protection.

    I always wax twice but only because I miss areas completely, that I want to protect.

    Yes you can strip the PF and get serious, but regular waxing will absorb minor oily crap (fingerprints etc.) off the PF without tearing into it with naptha on a brand new game.

    I use naptha only to remove old dirty wax, my game is too new for that yet. Now a 20 or 30 year old game, that is way different!

    At 5000 plays I will have to strip the PF to polish out the ball tracks. Naptha then to clean off all the polishing compund and old dead wax, then 2 coats if P21S and power buff the whole surface.

    Im estimating this based on the current wear and tear I see on my game.

    2 weeks later
    #894 5 years ago

    Magic eraser will grind out the imbedded dirt but will probably loosen the planked areas. If you were super careful you might get away with it, but you would still have to clear-coat to fix all the loose areas and probably have to do some touch-up for the scraped areas that are missing paint.

    #897 5 years ago
    Quoted from BorgDog:

    I actually did try a bit of Novus 2 under the apron and it did seem to work fairly well.
    Would ME+naptha be another alternative just to get a little abrasive and get more of the dirt out? Not sure which is more abrasive the Novus or the ME.

    There have been a lot of tests done with the Magic Eraser + 91% (or better) alcohol. The results have been very good.
    Seems to clean a bit better than novus 2, and may be easier to control as you can cut it into small pieces.

    3 months later
    #973 5 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Guitar guys use it to kill mildew on rosewood guitar fretboards, so it would probably work in a pin too.

    Naptha has been used since the egyptians, Its amazing stuff.

    1 month later
    #1013 4 years ago
    Quoted from facelift:

    I've been told that the playfield does not need actual "waxing" and that cleaning it with Novus 1 is all that is needed because of the factory clear coat

    This of course was from the people that sell playfields.

    Kinda like the car salesman who tells you that you never have to change the oil because its synthetic!

    3 weeks later
    #1029 4 years ago
    Quoted from PeterG:

    Ok buy new ones, how to remove the old rivet, drill them out? And install a new one, is there tooling for that.

    Rivet removal :

    Rivet installation:

    4 months later
    #1042 4 years ago
    Quoted from lb1:

    the new wax dissolves the old wax and picks up the dirt that's in there in the process.


    3 weeks later
    #1057 4 years ago

    So Im cleaning my pinball game, and have spent about an hour removing all the black dust from all accessible areas.

    I blew out the ball trough and vacuumed the cabinet as well as the playfield.

    I cleaned out all of the black dust from under the playfield.

    I removed the coil stops from the flippers and replaced the sleeves ( worn and dirty ).

    Rubbed out all ball tracks with a tiny bit of novus 2.

    Cleaned all the ball tracks off of the standup targets with a little RC-88 rubber cleaner on a q-tip.

    I applied a fresh coat of 100% carnauba to near everywhere I could reach with my fingertips.

    Shined up and polished my game, its a beautiful thing indeed!

    After 3 games the ball tracking is returning....

    I did not get under the tunnels, I need a little flexible cleaning pad of some sort on maybe a rubberized wire?

    I guess I have to do a better job next time

    #1060 4 years ago
    Quoted from flynnibus:

    If it's tracks that are just black dirt when you wipe.. then you missed some dirty spots. If they are the dull tracks... that's probably just beating back the filler the wax provided.
    Subways, troughs, and scoops are usually the biggest keepers of dirt given their location and the tendency for people to skip them.

    Yep, I need to rig up a sort of cleaning wand to get under stuff.
    I also cleaned a ton of black off the magnet cores.

    3 weeks later
    #1063 4 years ago
    Quoted from thundergod76:

    I'm looking for other waxes to use other than Blitz. I spend as much time vacuuming the damn chunks up as I do cleaning and waxing. It even clumps up while applying it. Gets worse each time I use it. Maybe I got a bad batch?

    If you put too thick a coat of wax then you will get a lot of dust.
    Really you just need the thinnest coat to do the job. Contrary to popular opinion you cant "build up" wax coats. If you did it would all grind off with the ball rolling on it anyway.

    If you dont like Blitz then maybe use P21S pure carnauba in the silver can. It leaves little or no residue even if you put a little too much on, and no dust to speak of.

    Also P21S goes on butter smooth so you can apply super thin coats.

    1 week later
    #1068 4 years ago
    Quoted from Pale_Purple:

    Maybe a dumb question but I just got some new balls from titan and they ship with a little oil to prevent rusting. It says to clean them but not how. Just wipe them down with a microfiber cloth? Put a little novus 2 on and wipe off or something?

    Rubbing alcohol, windex, dish soap or any type of gentle degreaser.
    let them dry and your good to go.
    Some people wax the balls but the wax just grinds off in seconds so dont bother.

    #1076 4 years ago
    Quoted from ForceFlow:

    Ok, I don't get it. I'm still having a lot of trouble with waxing. I don't seem to be able to end up with a slick surface any more, and I don't know what's going wrong here.
    I have a brand new can of blitz. Brand new microfiber cloths.
    Add water to a microfiber cloth. Rub the cloth in the wax until it warms up and starts to melt. Apply the gooey wax generously to the playfield in circles, and leave it to dry.
    It dries and turns white.
    When try to slide my finger over it, my finger just stops and doesn't glide--it is not slick at all. If I try to wipe it off with a dry, microfiber cloth, it takes a bit of rubbing. Again, the playfield is not slick at all and my finger doesn't slide.

    Re: "If I try to wipe it off with a dry, microfiber cloth, it takes a bit of rubbing"
    Wax is still not dry, its only white on the surface.

    Wax application is way heavy but ok it will wipe off. Let it dry again more completely after you wipe it off.
    After you wipe off all of the wax from everywhere the surface will not glide to the touch. You finger will drag like its got wax on it.
    Now take a clean yellow flannel cloth and buff the surface to a brilliant shine.

    You might have to clean all the wax off and do it over with a very VERY, thin coat of wax.

    You should barely be able to see where you are putting the wax, yes that thin.

    I have botched a wax job before by putting too much on it and had to start over, the Wax was so thick it didn't stick, just balled up in clumps and never shined up.

    I have not had super good results trying to buff out with microfiber. Im using yellow flannel now just as I have been for 30 years.
    As you buff it out the flannel cloth will slide easier and easier ultimately. Turn the cloth often allow the surface to breathe and dry up some more as you go.

    Remember the thinnest possible coats of wax give the finest results. And dry much faster.
    Dont put water on your applicator ( makes the wax dry times too long), if you must the applicator should be only slightly damp never wet. Heat friction and motion melts the wax as you apply it.

    #1086 4 years ago
    Quoted from ForceFlow:

    I tried it without water the second time. It didn't make a difference.

    Too much moisture, either in the pad or too heavy a coat of wax still.

    Let it dry, overnight of thats what it takes. It has to be "bone dry" in order to work.

    The wax is still "green", probably still too heavy of an application for the drying time expected.

    Wet wax will just re-wax as you are trying to get it to lay down and ultimately just rub off without laying down a coat.

    Each coat of wax removes the prior coat.

    Remember, the thinnest possible coats work the best. It should be so thin that you can barely see it when applying.

    Use an applicator sponge that is fairly dry, maybe 4 drops of water if its super dry and wring it in a towel.
    Rub the applicator on the pot in a circular fashion until it liquefies scrape off excess wax into the pot before application.
    If you have to, wipe the applicator pad onto a rag to remove excess wax before applying.

    1 week later
    #1095 4 years ago
    Quoted from ForceFlow:

    Well, that seemed to have done the trick.

    I botched a wax job on my TR-3 years ago.
    I waxed the car at night, applied too much wax, night was overcast that started to rain/drizzle.
    Even after the wax baked in the sun it would ball up and not polish or stick right.

    I ended up wiping the car down with white gas and rewashing the whole car.

    The next wax job was flawless, same can of wax etc...

    1 week later
    #1110 4 years ago
    Quoted from J85M:

    Any body ever used this or know anyone that has?

    WOW, I hope it cleans as good as Pledge...

    2 months later
    #1165 4 years ago
    Quoted from jibmums:

    I ordered some Collinite a year ago after reading some recommendations. Was hoping it would work better than either alcohol or naphtha for playfield deep-cleaning. I can tell you, and this is only my own experience of course, that a) it did nothing as far as cleaning dirt out of ball swirls, and b) when I tried it on a dirty area of the cabinet, it actually started taking paint off.

    I thought Collinite is a wax used on marine parts.
    Its very good as a wax, but it wont clean anything at all.

    Putting wax over dirt wont hurt anything but it wont help either.

    #1167 4 years ago
    Quoted from jibmums:

    Collinite #840 is a pre-wax cleane

    I see, and that makes more sense.
    I never looked for the pre-wax cleaner!
    I only looked at the wax.

    2 weeks later
    #1170 4 years ago

    Im still using wildcat RC-88 to clean all my rubber that seems to collect a tone of black dust.
    Has there been any improvements to using this?

    It sure works great to clean off a black finger print on white rubber.

    1 week later
    #1174 3 years ago
    Quoted from trk12fire:

    Is it ok to use simple green to clean rubbers or will it deteriorate the rubbers. It seems to work well and readily available, but I just had some rubbers fail early.

    Im using RC-88. It does a great job on rubber.


    #1176 3 years ago
    Quoted from trk12fire:

    I figured there was something better, but I was hoping I could use something that I already have around.

    Simple green doesnt remove the black dust well.
    Bleach-White works ok if you soak the rubber.
    RC-88 works immediately and kills black dust on contact. This is especially good on games with white rubber.

    1 month later
    #1260 3 years ago
    Quoted from 0geist0:

    I like to wax the playfield glass. Easier to keep clean and it slides on and off really well, almost too well.

    Im using Sparkle on the glass.
    Its non ammonia and leaves no streaks plus its recommended for invisiglass.
    To me waxing the glass makes it less clear, but it might only be me...

    2 months later
    #1296 3 years ago
    Quoted from Mr_Tantrum:

    Okay, I've read through the thread but have a specific question for my situation, and I apologize if you have to repeat yourself (just point me to the post(s) if already answered).
    I have a Getaway that I have done my best to restore, mod, etc. I keep it very clean but the playfield just doesn't have that glossy pop to it (at least not like some other pins I've played, even from the same era). I've cleaned it with various products I've seen recommended and I use paste carnauba wax (2-3 applications) to wax it by hand. However, I just can't get that high-gloss reflective shine that I've seen on many playfields.
    I don't know if it is my product, my process, or if I'm just limited by the age/condition of my playfield, but any suggestions would be sincerely appreciated.

    Hi-Gloss has to do with the lack of micro scratches and a hard finish.
    Careful machine buffing of the clearcoat with a variety of mild abrasives ( very mild!) to take out the micro scratches, and an application of a super hard wax like blitz or p21s and then buffed will produce a shine.

    Its easy however to rub through the clear and destroy the finish especially if its old and worn.

    Cheap liquid canauba wont shine at all compared to 100% carnauba, it just wipes off.

    Older finishes might not have the hardness of more modern finishes but they are more chip resistant.
    They can look dull with age as they wear or pick up a lot of micro scratches from cleaning and over-all use.

    You get a more satin sheen which isnt bad, just not hard and glossy.

    So, people clear over them to freshen things up a bit, and buff.

    I like to buff the wax with a felt pad or rag to shine it up after the wax dries for awhile.

    #1299 3 years ago
    Quoted from Mr_Tantrum:

    As always, thanks for the detailed explanation and sound advice. Also, the condition is much to do with your advice on how to clean, do touch-up paint, etc.

    FYI, I use Mothers California Gold Pure Brazilian Carnauba Wax Paste

    I have used that wax before, its ok but doesnt last very long.
    Its like 50% solvent. It does a good job of clearing old wax as you apply it but leaves too much white dust for me.

    I switched to P21S (silver can) and will never go back. Its perfect for me and leaves extremely little white dust.
    And Its higher wax to solvent ratio leaves more wax down on the playfield.
    It dries rock hard and lasts for weeks on my games that get a fair amount of play.

    Others like the Blitz 1000 wax. Its also very good but leaves a fair amount of white dust that you have to vacuum off.

    #1302 3 years ago

    Yes thats the stuff, expensive but one can of either will last a long time.
    You only use tiny amounts. More doesnt do anything and you cant build coats because each new coat melts off the old one.

    #1303 3 years ago
    Quoted from mrgregb123:

    I'm using Ball Baron Ninja balls...finest balls you can buy. Same situation, every game. The wax provides no benefit to me. Makes the ball way too fast and only seems to protect for a handful of games before it wears off. Another reason is:

    Wax keeps the clearcoat from getting hazy too fast between buffings.
    Same with cars.

    Hi solid content waxes last a long time. Liquids rub off in a day as they are mostly solvent.

    The Ninja balls are very nice, they look almost as good as regular balls after being in the polisher for a day.

    #1307 3 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    You must be thinking of Bill's
    Blitz has no white dust or flakes.
    You can barely tell when it'd dry.

    Perfect in the picture, Im sure I applied way too much that day.
    (always in a hurry, always screwing things up etc..)

    1 week later
    #1320 3 years ago
    Quoted from Damien:

    Been combing through this incredibly insightful thread, and just wanted to clarify that Novus 1 might not be the best choice for regularly scheduled cleaning, and that Naphtha can be use more safely to clean your pf?
    All my games are HUO, but get quite a bit of use. Is Naphtha safe to use everytime my games need a cleaning? And is there is there still a point of using Novus 1? I get that for ball trails or light scratches I could bring out the Novus 2 on occasion.
    And lastly, is Blitz still the top choice for wax?

    Naptha (lighter fluid) is hard to beat for degreasing and dewaxing. And its way cheap.
    But it can be smelly. But its waterless, and thats important on older games that might have some bare wood showing or cracks in the clear.

    Right now I like Mist n Shine on the new games (its what JJP uses on the line). Its a detailers quick clean product and looks great on clearcoat. Also way cheaper than novus 1.
    I use it for between waxing cleanups. It has some wax in it and smells great.

    I use novus1 on plastics after they are cleaned up. I think it shines better than the mist n shine. Mist n shine has a higher wax content it looks a tiny bit duller on plastics but still works good.

    Other than that, I use sparkle glass cleaner on tons of stuff (even black dust). It wont ruin coated (Anti-glare) playfield glass or melt plastics or posts (unlike 409 this crap is deadly)at all. And its also a pretty good, mild cleaner of itself.

    #1324 3 years ago
    Quoted from Damien:

    Is this the product you're referring to:
    amazon.com link »
    And is it advised to use this every month or two when I clean my games before waxing?
    I'm still a bit unsure of why and when I'd need Naphtha. If I'm already cleaning and then waxing with something like the above product, why would I need to use it?
    Also, what's best for ball trails, ball swirls, and light scratches? Novus 2?

    Yes thats the stuff.

    Maintenance has more to do with games played than time.

    I do a wipe down, general cleaning and black dust removal every 250 games.
    I do a wax job in all the areas I can reach every 350-450 games.

    I do a full cleaning/ball track removal/wax removal with naptha and partial tear down when I replace the rubber, every 3000-5000 games. Sooner if the game isnt being played much and the rubber is drying out. Like car tires, I think the rubber dries out less if its being played.
    For me at least the rubber is getting replaced every 3 years or so depending on how it looks and plays. And of course when a piece breaks.

    Others might have a different schedule, but this works for me.

    Ball tracking/swirls and wear areas is easily taken car of with novus2. Go easy on this stuff and rub gently. Its an abrasive and will thin down the clearcoat in time.

    Always wax over the area you used novus2 on after the area is clean.

    Its best to clean off the ball tracking as it occurs. Often it will come up with wax or a cleaner. Leaving it on a long time will bury the grit into the clearcoat.

    #1325 3 years ago
    Quoted from mmr61184:

    Does it make sense to wax a clearcoated playfield. I have heard some people say it makes the ball fly too much and that the clearcoat these guys would take years to tear up in a home environment

    Al games, all cars, everything with clearcoat should be waxed they will look nicer much longer.
    Just use a 100% carnauba past wax not a liquid.

    You dont really want to wait until the clear is so dirty that the grit is embedded into it.
    Its better the let the grit set into the wax instead of the clearcoat, remove the wax with grit in it then re-wax.

    Its true that the clear will last a long time. But ball wear areas will need a renewable coating to help the clear last its longest.
    Its simpler to just wax the areas you can reach periodically.

    The playfield will thank you later.

    #1336 3 years ago
    Quoted from FatPanda:

    I'll have to scour my local Menards/Home Depot for the plastic rod/wand, unless there is something specific you use? Was thinking something with a microfiber cloth wrapped around it with rubber bands that can get pushed into the orbits. I've got a Dyson cordless mini-vac that works well for vacuuming.
    Do you do this for waxing also? Or do you do a partial tear down?

    Right now I use some old wooden spoon handles and a couple rubber spatulas trimmed to fit in some tight areas.
    I have a couple old spoons that I let soak outside in a bucket of water for a couple months (I forgot about them) and they warped into gentle curves. I think that I could warp some specially for cleaning tools but I havent had to do that yet. If they get too rough I just sand them a little.
    I just wrap either a terry cloth towel or a yellow felt cloth depending on the job.
    Sometimes I just push thru a wad of paper towel dampened with whatever cleaner seems proper.

    And of course either old or new toothbrushes to clear out cracks and the occasional waxey goop on a star post.

    Lastly I really like RC-88 rubber cleaner.
    Its mean stuff but works wonders on rubbers. It kills black dust on contact with a q-tip.
    Dirty rubber can look like new if cleaned with this stuff, especially the white ones.
    Just dont use it on anything else but the rubber or non-decaled stand-up targets.

    #1338 3 years ago
    Quoted from FatPanda:

    Quite interesting. I'm thinking something flexible that can bend around the curve, but be sturdy enough that I can put a bit of pressure down towards the playfield to clean.

    I havent found anything flexible that I could put enough pressure on to do a light scrubbing.

    But wooden spoons can be bent to any shape after boiling, steaming or soaking for a long time.
    They are super cheap and they come in a lot of shapes, lengths and widths.
    I buy them by the bag once in awhile at the dollar store, especially if there is a new shape I might use.
    They can also be cut and trimmed to whatever you want to use them for.

    I imagine some 1/4" and 3/8" dowels of assorted length would be similar but no flattened ends for rags attached.

    #1341 3 years ago
    Quoted from gunstarhero:

    I second Mr. Tantrums California Gold Carnuba Paste wax from Mothers suggestion. Works great and even smells pretty nice.

    This is a pretty good cleaner wax.
    It has more solvent than I require though.

    Right now I just clean off the old wax then apply a very high solids pure carnauba like blitz or P21S.

    I like the outcome better and the non-cleaner wax seems longer lasting and harder.

    #1343 3 years ago
    Quoted from mrgregb123:

    You're saying Steve Ritchie designed his games for environments (i.e. route operation with nicely waxed pfs) that would never actually exist? Not sure that's entirely true:

    Looks like he recommended it to keep the playfield nice, and nothing more. God, I hope no designer actually designs a game expecting the pf to be waxed.

    It would be ludicrous to imagine that one would design a game that would only play correctly if it was dirty or worn out.

    One can only design around new games and ones that are waxed and play like new.

    Designers are paid to make "New" games, not old dirty, crusty ones.

    #1351 3 years ago
    Quoted from mrgregb123:

    Totally agree with you my man! No arguments there. Clean machines get played. But I think this conversation revolved around waxing for home use, which having done it in the past, I realized was unnecessary. If you're putting your machine up at TPF or Pintastic, hell yeah you should wax it - armor the crap out of it. But for home use, ESPECIALLY on machines with a nice thick clear coat, I found the ball speed makes it an overall negative. My TAF clearcoated with PPG is so friggin' fast w/o wax it would be nearly unplayable with a coat on. But you've mentioned scenarios where this makes sense - older games especially. No qualms there.

    That's the other problem I had with waxing. Wax with Blitz exactly as Vid has instructed. Run your finger. Smooth as butter. After 10-20 games the playfield feels like it did before you waxed. Your results may vary.

    My HUO WOZ has over 10000 games on it. This is at least 50,000 steel balls (more like 90,000) rolled and bounced around on the surface.

    You better believe I wax it!

    My games get played a lot, Im a player not a collector.

    But I see what you are getting at.

    If the games are getting no play then why bother waxing at all.
    I have seen HUO games come up for sale that only had 200 games on them after 6 years of ownership.
    I dont know if thats common or not, but the people I know that have pinball machines, do play them a lot.
    And games add up over time and maintenance is needed. So I recommend a schedule.

    If you are just a collector then
    keep then dusted off and just enjoy looking at them.

    Its all good.

    #1353 3 years ago
    Quoted from jsa:

    That's just it; They always feel waxed. I guess that means I'm not playing enough.

    I use the audits to see how many games are played and how many balls.

    I have a little notepad in each game to help me remember what parts I might need and what I did at each maintenance interval.
    I started doing this as my collection grew, I couldnt keep track of anything so now I just scribble a note to myself.

    I usually dont do everything in one day that needs to be done.
    I usually do coil sleeve cleaning while the wax is drying etc, but save big cleaning jobs for a time I can do a good job.

    #1355 3 years ago
    Quoted from mrgregb123:

    are you playing Woz on 5-ball?

    3 balls narrow outlanes 20 sec ball save.
    Pinballgoddess has it set the way she likes it. Her average score is 2 to 4 million.
    She plays it 7 days a week, every night, along with other games to warm-up.

    My medieval madness had 1500 games on the first weekend I owned it. I waxed it 3 times that weekend alone to keep it playing fast and like new. It was brand new and we noticed it was slowing down, so I waxed it then and there.

    My ARMrLE had 500 games on it the first 2 days.
    It started playing slow so I tuned everything up, replaced the flipper coil sleeves and waxed it so it would play like new again.

    And so on....

    But really everyone is different, I agree.
    I just like my games to play as new as possible and put in a little effort to make that happen.

    #1358 3 years ago
    Quoted from Damien:

    So let me make sure I have it right. Every couple of months, for my HUO games, it's advised to wipe down the pf with a micro fibre and do a little vacuuming?
    Would something like this be a good fit: amazon.com link »
    Then, if there are ball swirls, I can apply Novus 2 gently in a circular motion to remove them? After wiping that away, should I put something like Novus 1 on to clean anything I might have missed since it is abrasive? And then finish up by applying some wax?
    I'm still not certain when or why I would need to use Nahtha.
    Thanks again

    You on your new games don't really need to use naptha at all.

    It's only really used on heavily routed games that have years of Filth on them.

    Or a little bit in a neglected area that you would uncover when say you replace all the rubbers and do a full tear down.

    #1361 3 years ago
    Quoted from klr650:

    Hi Vid, I replaced some drop targets on Quicksilver but I forgot to wax them. Now, after only 200-250 plays I've got some really dark ball trails on the targets.
    Before I do something stupid, what would be the best method of cleaning the drop target surfaces? Thanks!

    You're picking up ball dust from some hidden Subway, ball trough or somewhere in it's getting rubbed into the plastic.

    I'm using RC 88 on a Q-tip for that stuff and it's working pretty good.

    #1371 3 years ago
    Quoted from pinheadpierre:

    What's the sandwich bag for?

    In case you want to take a sandwich with you as a snack or for lunch.

    1 month later
    #1392 3 years ago

    the clear shouldnt be softer than a nylon brush.
    But wax could be.
    Is it just the wax thats getting roughed up?

    #1396 3 years ago
    Quoted from jboner1058:

    Nope def in the clear. Had to buff it out

    Must be either very hard and Sharp nylon or softer clear coat.

    Does the ball easily wear tracks in it?

    1 week later
    #1399 3 years ago
    Quoted from PinballFever:

    Pieces of dried melted rubber on playfield. Best way to clean/remove them?
    I know pulling one of the pieces up will pull the paint up with it. Can I carefully crush them into powder then clean them off? Is there something that dissolves them without harming the paint?


    #1402 3 years ago
    Quoted from PinballFever:

    I don't think Naptha dissolves the dried hardened melted rubber pieces. I did try it before posting here.

    I did like your idea of crushing them into powder and then gently cleaning off the remainder with maybe a plastic razor blade and lighter fluid.
    Everything eats the paint including alcohol.

    #1407 3 years ago
    Quoted from PinballFever:

    I plan to leave it where the ball doesn't go but there are bumps from the rubber pieces where the ball does go. Maybe the ball will flatten them out while playing the game?

    If the rubber is very hard and wont budge at all, sand it off carefully with a custom made small 1" sanding block. Be careful and mask off any areas not to be sanded with masking tape.

    Once the rubber is thinned down, a cleaner might soak in enough to release the remainder, or just wax over it.

    #1409 3 years ago
    Quoted from PinballFever:

    I'll look into trying that. It does need to be smoothed down or flattened somehow. I may try the plastic razor first. Are you able to slide the plastic razor across the playfield without scratching the paint?

    Yes if you are careful.

    2 weeks later
    #1416 3 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    so pour a little on a rag, clean your game, and then set the rags outside to dry (usually they are dry before you can even take them out).

    This is what I do. In fact I move the rags outside immediately after Im done degreasing/dewaxing.
    Usually Im done using naptha within 5 mins or so, and then its outta here with it.

    I keep the used rags in a coffee can in the garage. They dont smell up the garage too much this way.

    Even left alone and dry the rags smell up the whole house with my central air running.

    #1419 3 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Make sure the coffee can is the kind with the METAL lid.
    The oily rags will self ignite from oxidation and burn through a vinyl lid.
    Naphtha will 100% evaporate if you spread the rags outside. A quick smell test will let you know they are done.

    Its more of an old latex paint can, yes with a metal lid.

    I really could use one of those red metal bins for rags that we had when I was a machinist.

    #1426 3 years ago
    Quoted from Damien:

    Should naphtha be used each time you give your game a clean up, or is it better to use Novus 1? From what I've read earlier, you mentioned Novus 1 can be slightly abrasive.
    Just wondering if it is safe/recommended to use naphtha on 90's-current games. I usually do a clean up every 2-3 months.

    For light regular non-waxing cleanings whenever I take of the glass for something.

    I clean off the ball tracks on standup targets with RC-88 and a q-tip (dont use it on anything plastic please).

    I dampen a yellow felt polishing rag with mist n shine and rub down wherever I can reach to remove coil stop dust (works good on all plastics too). You can poke and pull a yellow felt polisher rag thru, under and around a lot of areas with a wooden spoon handle or a rounded piece of 3/8" dowel. I cut the rags up as necessary to get then into places that are tight.

    If I have time to clean ball tracks I use a tiny bit of novus 2 on a small microfiber rag and rub them off.

    Note: novus 2 will remove the wax in areas you use it on, as its abrasive.

    Then I have to apply a super thin, almost non existent layer of carnauba over the ball track area, let it dry for a few mins and buff it off.

    This differs from a big cleaning in that I spend a lot more time on a thorough cleaning inspecting nuts, bolts and screws and then wax all of the playfield I can reach with a thin coat of carnauba.

    On other days I inspect the underside of the playfield and vacuum off black coil dust along with the inspection of all of the screws, bolts and nuts. I clean inside the inserts with a q-tip and rubbing alcohol.
    I also tug on and inspect wires for looseness and check each solenoid plunger for smooth operation and repair or clean as needed.
    I clean plungers and coils sleeves with naptha to degrease them. Especially on the flippers.

    I also vacuum out the lower cabinet and wipe down the harnesses with a rag and sparkle glass cleaner.
    I also use sparkle glass cleaner on plastics of they look grimy.

    I only use naptha on the playfield to remove all the wax, when I change out all the rubbers.

    Since you have to remove all of the assemblies, its a good time to really clean off the playfield. I do it in sections as I go.

    For me its about 3000 to 5000 plays.

    Notice that I havent mentioned novus 1. I rarely use it. Mist n Shine is sufficient if you have it.

    3 weeks later
    #1439 3 years ago
    Quoted from Haymaker:

    Its basically a clear liquid containing ceramic elements or more specifically a compound called SIO-2 (silicon dioxide). When applied on automotive paint, it essentially acts as a super high performance wax that lasts months or even years. Super water repellency, high gloss, super slick surface, and also some paint protection properties as well since the coating itself is very hard. Harder than the clear coat even sometimes. A coated car, will clean off like a breeze. Even hardcore things like brake dust on wheels comes right off with essentially a hose sprayer.
    The downsides of the coating are- expense and the prep necessary to apply, as you wouldn't want to lock in scratches or dirt under the ceramic.
    They do make cheap versions from china that I have been playing with on my beater car with good results, and I'm just about ready to try a quality one on my Ford Raptor.
    It seems like it would have a lot of properties that would make it nice for pinball machines, both old style and new ones that have actual 2 part clear on them. But perhaps theres something I'm missing, which is why I am asking. When winter hits and I'm down working on my machines more often I might be the guinea pig if nobody else has tried it.
    The best form is the actual ceramic liquid, but theres other styles of it as well including sprays and even a handful of paste waxes infused with it, such as Enigma by AngelWax. I just picked up some Enigma, and I'm excited to try it out on some cars and that might make it onto some of my games at some point as well.

    Since we don't run ballbearings all over or cars it's hard to say if it's good or bad.

    Also what about touchups after the application?

    Also what about re-clear coating after application?

    Many questions about this tech.

    But it looks really promising.

    Some guys are already using it on new games and really like it.

    But as always there are the after the fact repair questions.

    2 months later
    #1448 3 years ago
    Quoted from dashv:

    Thank you soooo much for this post and the tremendous amount of detail.
    I have a brand new bottle of mill wax “pinball play field wax and cleaner” that I was going to apply to my Attack from Mars LE. It’s my first pinball machine I’ve ever owned, it’s my baby, and it’s due for its first waxing ever.
    Instead this bottle of mill wax is going in the trash and I’m picking up some Blitz One Grand!
    Silly question.
    Are you supposed to wax the shooter lane too? Do you wax the metal rails the balls travel across and metal parts of the ramps?

    Only wax the playfield. This includes the shooter lane.
    You dont have to wax any of the metal parts.

    It won't hurt them, its just unnecessary.

    Dont wax the balls, the wax will just fall off of them.

    Put very small amounts of wax.

    Think of what a fingerprint on glass looks like.

    Yes that amount is plenty.

    You cant build layers of wax.

    One coat is enough. If you miss an area, certainly rewax that area.

    If you haven't already, get cliffy's for at least the shooter lane and the SOL scoop hole.

    #1459 3 years ago
    Quoted from branlon8:

    hopefully an easy question - is Novus No. 2 the brown stuff or the white stuff ?
    I’ve only bought Novus 2 and 3 once and I have the impression the brown stuff is coarser, but it’s in the Novus No. 2 bottle.

    If it's getting thick add a tiny bit of water to it and shake it up a lot.
    You shouldn't have to use the novus 3 at all, unless you are restoring an area.

    3 weeks later
    #1475 3 years ago

    The P21S silver can is the one you want.
    The blue can is half beeswax, cheaper but not as good as the 100% carnauba in the silver can.

    2 weeks later
    #1483 3 years ago
    Quoted from Damien:

    I've used some tips from this thread, but still can't seem to get rid of the trailed left from balls, and also the trails left from the flippers.
    Anyone have a solution to cleaning up the inlanes down the flippers, and the path that the flippers travel. Looks pretty bad on my LOTR, and Novus 2 just doesn't seem to do much.

    Ball trails become ball ruts in the playfield over time.

    Dirt accumulates in the ruts and gets ground in.

    Wax removal with naphtha and then Novus 2 is great for rubbing out the tracking.

    Small amounts of novus 2 and firm aggressive rubbing, turning the rag often will do the trick.

    Novus 3 is too aggressive, I dont like the dull appearance it leaves, and it damages/cuts too much clear off. But it works on badly neglected areas if you must, I hate using it.

    Wax afterwards with pure canauba.

    These areas have to be cleaned more often, so check it often.

    I use mist n shine to pick up black dust between waxings. It cleans without removing the wax.

    Every 2500-3000 plays I remove various coil stops and clean sleeves throughout the game to limit coil stop dust production. This helps a lot.

    Ultimately the clearcoat will wear off and need to be reapplied, but it could last 30 to 50 thousand or more plays with proper maintenance.

    So, keep it waxed and very clean for it to last.

    #1486 3 years ago
    Quoted from pinheadpierre:

    I understand the ball trail and agree with the above advice, but flippers should not leave a trail. Properly installed flippers don't touch the playfield. As Vid said, a picture would really help.

    Yes, flippers should never scrape the playfield.

    Definitely a broken flipper bushing or flipper bat clearance issue.

    1 week later
    #1490 3 years ago
    Quoted from wesman:

    What's the usual protocol for a first waxing, as in timeframe and such? I just got my game last Friday, have played a handful of games, and have some sponges and some Blitz One Grand that I bought prior to receiving it.
    And what would you recommend for picking up tiny particles from it being made. I have bits of wood/particle flakes here and there throughout the playfield, and of course some dust that came in from removing the glass a couple of times.
    Do you wipe the balls down with anything in particular?
    Thank you for reading!

    Today is a good day to wax.
    Wax all the easy reach areas first.

    Clean the balls with a waterless degreaser like lighter fluid or brake cleaner or lacquer thinner.

    Vacuum off dust and particles with a small shopvac, inside and out when done.

    #1492 3 years ago

    Grab the playfield by the inner apron center.

    Raise it straight up about a foot.

    Grab the yellow service rails one in each hand ftom their front verticle areas so you can stabilize and keep it straight.

    Dont let the playfield rock out of level side to side too much.

    Step backwards to pull the playfield out of the cabinet towards you, keeping the yellow rails above the front edge.

    Do not push the playfield Into the machine. Pull it out, past the coin door.

    Rest the yellow rails on the front edge of the cabinet.

    Rest the formed squared off rear sections, of the yellow service rails into the silver metal area of the upper front edge of the cabinet.

    This will keep the playfield from sliding back

    Fix the flipper.

    It seems hard but it's a very basic thing you must do for maintenance including waxing.

    It wont fall again if you keep it under control.

    It's actually very easy one you have done it. Most of us do it without thinking now.

    Do this first.

    #1494 3 years ago

    Just wipe it down for now with a clean cloth, then wax.

    #1516 3 years ago

    Manufacturers DO NOT apply wax from the factory.

    Applying wax gives you a rock hard, renewable surface that will make your game last thousands of plays more than no wax at all.

    Since pure carnauba is rock hard, use naptha to remove it. Full detailing and wax removal would only happen if the game is completely torn down for major maintenance after 10 or 20 thousand plays.

    Mist n shine is silicone free. JJP uses if for the final wipe down on all games. Its rated for clearcoat.
    A lot of us use it for between waxing "touch-ups", and you can use it on plastics too.

    Its a cleaner/wax that is similar to novus 1, but has more wax in it. Lightly spray it on a rag, wipe and buff off.

    Lighter fluid, brake cleaner, lacquer thinner is used to clean off grease from balls and small parts.

    Lighter fluid is pure old school Naptha.

    Small bottles of Ronson lighter fluid are readily available and very useful for cleaning off coil sleeves or greasy build up in mechanical parts.

    And it comes in a handy tool box size bottle.

    If you want, you can get a gallon of V&P naptha at home depot. This will be the newer safer version, its ok but not as good as the real thing we used to have. But Im kinda old school on this.

    Ball tracking will occur very soon after100 to 200 plays.
    Mostly waxing them off and buffing is pretty effective, the wax has solvents in it that soften and remove the old wax pretty effectively, taking the dirt off with it.

    If ball tracks dont wax off, a little novus 2 works really well. Novus 2 is slightly abrasive, so apply freash wax over those areas after cleaning.

    DO NOT spray stuff all over the playfield. It just drips into the cabinet and corrodes metal parts, or gets them wet so black dust sticks to them.

    Apply stuff with a rag then buff/dry off.

    Sparkle glass cleaner can be used to clean just about anything. Its also rated for coated anti-reflective glass and clearcoat.
    Its ammonia free and wont hurt plastics either.

    #1518 3 years ago
    Quoted from wesman:

    So this kind of stuff will work great for ball cleaning?
    You're genuinely so incredibly helpful, as are so many on this forum!
    Ooooh. So. I apply wax with a rag, and then use the yellow sponges to buff? Or.....vice versa?

    That might be white gas or kerosene (methanol or ethanol?). Its handy to have around but might leave a residue.

    This is lighter fluid:


    #1520 3 years ago
    Quoted from wesman:

    Oh shit! Okay, I was just looking for in-store available and cheap.
    How about this from home depot?

    Sure, but only use it on unpainted metal parts.

    #1524 3 years ago
    Quoted from wesman:

    Oh I was just using it on ball cleaning.
    Is there something widely available you'd recommend for that, specifically?
    Would Sparkle not work?

    Dont be too obsessed with ball cleaning, anything will do.
    The balls that came with my houdini were actually very clean, I just wiped them off with a rag.

    You just havent seen replacement balls that come with heavy honey-like grease on them to protect them from rust.
    You might see this later when you get new balls from marcospec.

    #1526 3 years ago
    Quoted from Who-Dey:

    I always just wipe mine off real good because they usually seem to be pretty clean when i get them. Maybe i should start using alcohol or something to clean them?

    WD40 works pretty good, and dries off well enough in a pinch.

    All this ball cleaning info is from the times you get fresh balls that are dripping wet with heavy oil on them.
    Degreasing will be what is needed then.

    Also I buy balls 50-100 at a time and oil them with motor oil to keep them fresh in storage.
    I just spray them off with brake cleaner and wipe with a rag before use.

    Buy balls in bulk, its better to replace them too often, than not often enough.

    #1531 3 years ago
    Quoted from wesman:

    You mean by honey, oily goo from lots of new balls? Mine were from American Pinball and super dry.


    #1537 3 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    Sounds good.
    I never heard of using coffee filters to clean glass, but that sounds like a neat trick.
    I don’t think Monster Bash has any magnets and leaning towards the ninja balls because they say ninja. Haha

    Coffee filters are lint free and dont fall apart like paper towels.

    Restaurants use them for glass all the time.

    #1542 3 years ago
    Quoted from wesman:

    Yeah, I was afraid I'd scuffed it up prewaxing. But I'd imagine wax can only protect the clearcoat so much either way.... I definitely noticed scuffs before waxing.
    As a first time new owner, I'm getting used to the fact that games are like cars. They can be preserved, but still take lifetime damage from being used. Makes sense.

    At about 10,000 plays, the game will be torn down for maintenance.

    At that point you take a buffer to the clearcoat and remove the scuffs do touchups etc.

    Also the dimples will start to even out flat again.

    You wax the playfield to get it to last 40,000 plays and still have something to work with.

    There's no guarantee that you can get a new playfield 30 years from now.

    #1546 3 years ago
    Quoted from JCNP:

    Mills pinball wax. Nothing else needed for a new machine if you keep maintenance up. Is this correct.

    no one uses that.

    use blitz 1000 or P21S silver.

    #1551 3 years ago
    Quoted from JCNP:

    Do you think the 4 mil mylar is too thick, will it create a problem?

    It's ok for shooter lanes and possibly other areas as long as the ball doesn't hang on an edge.

    2 months later
    #1565 2 years ago
    Quoted from Plungeroo:

    Thanks Vid for all the advice you have given over the years. I'm new to Pinside and have found all the essential advice more than often leads back to your involvement. I've just got my first pin and the cleaning and waxing products you have recommended work great. It's worthwhile taking the advice of people who contribute a lot to these forums as it saves time and money experimenting. You guys have already been down the path some of us are starting on.
    I had a hard time sourcing the Blitz Wax from the USA to Australia so when I eventually got some I bought an extra tub to avoid the future inconvenience. The biggest barrier is the shipping to Australia and you can't buy direct from the manufacturer.
    To my surprise, the tubs are huge and it seems to go along way and it works as you have described. So for all those newbies reading this thread, I have an extra tub brand new unopened and I'd be happy to part with it if you're in Australia and like me can't get your hands on it easily.

    Maybe post an ad in the marketplace?

    1 month later
    #1568 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    Hey guys/gals,
    Remember me?
    It's been a few months...
    I felt it appropriate to update you since I did a fair share of all my comments as a newbie on this THREAD.
    I'm no longer getting MBrLE. However, I DID just purchase (yesterday) NIB JJP POTC CE. VERY excited about and it should arrive this weekend I'm hoping.
    Relevant to this thread...
    I'm still "on the fence" "what I do" when I get this machine:
    a) Pre wax or no wax?
    b) Replace the balls or the balls that come w/ JJP are fine.
    vid1900 kinda scared the hell out of me and I know he is only trying to help... I appreciate it.
    Basically, do or "should" I worry about anything other than enjoying my new game when I get it...
    Interested to hear any feedback from others what YOU DO that wish to share.

    I order cliffys when I order the game.

    I always inspect the balls.
    If they are shiney and look good, I clean the oil off of them and use them.

    I usually play 20 or so games to dial in the game, install cliffys, then wax it.

    #1570 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    Aye pinballinreno,
    How's it going! I remember you...
    I'm sorry... What exactly is cliffys and how do you "install" it?
    I appreciate this!


    #1572 2 years ago
    Quoted from Nokoro:

    Agreed. Play the game, enjoy it. You are going to do no damage to the playfield by playing it at home for 20 or even 50 games before waxing. Within a week or two, wax. Just get all the areas you can reach -- no need to do a full tear down.
    As for cliffys, these are optional. Check the JJPOTC thread to see what problem areas there are. For example, on WOZ, you really need a cliffy to protect the munchkinland playfield, but all others are optional. For DI, you need cliffys on both scoops. Some people put cliffys everywhere, but it is really up to you whether you want that level of protection.

    Yes, muchkin edging and throne room are a must!

    #1577 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    I lied ...
    This looks pretty "solid" for a complete n00b like me...
    I don't understand most of it, but I like the presentation.
    This was mentioned a few pages back around a year ago and virtually went ignored...
    I'll actually shut up now.. =/
    EDIT: I went to https://www.flipnoutpinball.com/ (which I respect more out of all the other companies listed), looked for pinhedz on their site and they had no products to show.

    Use blitz or P21S silver.
    Mist n shine isn't a wax, it's a cleaning fluid.

    Email Cliff directly for what you want.

    All coil stops and sleeves wear down after awile.

    Flipper coil stops an sleeves wear down the fastest.

    As they wear the angle of the flipper bat changes.

    I change the flipper coil stops when they wear down 1/16" or more as it changes game play and I like the flippers to feel fresh and play properly.

    Generally 2-3 thousand games on flipper stops and sleeves unless they get sticky.

    Check the plungers also at this time and file off any mushrooming or replace them if they look bad.

    Mylar over any place that the ball drops on or any unprotected edge that gets a lot of ball traffic.

    When I do a serious cleaning or maintenance every 1500 games I pull the flipper coil stops, clean the sleeves with naptha and make an assessment.

    #1580 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    I appreciate this.
    So Blitz OR P21S Silver? Which do you use? Are they really so interchangeable that it simply doesn't matter?
    So much to learn man..
    So now the flippers have coil stops as well? I really need to do my homework and understand visually what a "coil" is...
    Also, is it fair that some of this stuff depends solely on the pin you own?
    Like I don't know how many sleeves or w/e my table will have.

    You are getting a brand new game.
    Parts maintenance is quite away in the future.

    Play it awhile and wax it after about 20 games.
    Blitz wax and P21S are interchangeable.
    Blitz is much cheaper.

    #1585 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    I’m not against waxing, but wasn’t there someone several pages ago who stated that they didn’t “believe” in waxing or something.
    Moreover, that waxing can create a game that wasn’t “intended.”
    I haven’t the slightest clue, but I have to say waxing seems necessary...
    So it should take about a pin dot of wax in total? And not just the play-field but everywhere the ball touches, so rails and whatever else right?
    Does anyone get scared they use too much on accident?
    Also, the slings... I think they are called slings. Ya know the things above the flippers that “sling” or ricochet the ball to hell. Now I must admit those things are practically my favorite thing about pinball, but scare the hell out of me as I think an uncontrollable drain is in my very near future.
    Back on topic. There are white and black rubbers right? It looks like JJP POTC has white. Are the black ones much more aggressive or responsive? This was talked in this thread at some point I think.
    I briefly played Deadpool and it had black rubbers and the ball was just going crazy. POTC not so much.
    TL:DR - I’m a bit of a purest and I’m just trying to understand what is okay and not okay as far as modifications to retain the authenticity and true representation of the pin.
    Thanks again!!

    Waxing is a matter of preference.

    If you are going to run the playfield until the clearcoat wears out and the paint wears thru, and then replace it (if you can get one for $2000 in the future from a collector) then dont wax.

    If you would like to preserve the finish of the playfield to make it last many years and possibly never replace it, and have it look new decades later, then wax it.

    I dont think people understand what pure carnauba wax is.

    Its not candle wax or beeswax.

    If you found it in nature you would think its a chunk of granite rock.

    Its as hard as a rock. Solvents are added to soften it for application.
    When the solvents dry out, what is left is rock hard carnauba wax on your surface.

    Pure carnauba leaves the hardest surface.
    Wax blends that have some carnauba in it are softer and less durable on the surface.

    You apply a very thin coat, think what fingerprints on glass look like, yes- that thin.

    This is so that the wax can dry out to its hardest surface in a short amount of time.

    Thinner coats dry harder and dry out faster.

    On a pinball machine you want the surface to be cleanable and renewable.

    When applying new wax the solvents in the application melt off the old wax, and lay down a new fresh coat.

    It has been proven over and over again, that its better and cheaper on the long run to wear out the wax surface, than the painted surface of the playfield.

    #1586 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    I’m not against waxing, but wasn’t there someone several pages ago who stated that they didn’t “believe” in waxing or something.
    Moreover, that waxing can create a game that wasn’t “intended.”
    I haven’t the slightest clue, but I have to say waxing seems necessary...
    So it should take about a pin dot of wax in total? And not just the play-field but everywhere the ball touches, so rails and whatever else right?
    Does anyone get scared they use too much on accident?
    Also, the slings... I think they are called slings. Ya know the things above the flippers that “sling” or ricochet the ball to hell. Now I must admit those things are practically my favorite thing about pinball, but scare the hell out of me as I think an uncontrollable drain is in my very near future.
    Back on topic. There are white and black rubbers right? It looks like JJP POTC has white. Are the black ones much more aggressive or responsive? This was talked in this thread at some point I think.
    I briefly played Deadpool and it had black rubbers and the ball was just going crazy. POTC not so much.
    TL:DR - I’m a bit of a purest and I’m just trying to understand what is okay and not okay as far as modifications to retain the authenticity and true representation of the pin.
    Thanks again!!

    Rubber is based on durometer numbers. different colors have different durometer readings.

    White rubber is bouncier than black, its softer.

    Black rubber lasts longer than white, its harder and more resilient.

    White rubber needs to be cleaned pretty often, it gets dirty fast from the black dust from the coils stops as they break down.

    Route games always have black rubber (or urethane now) for the best durability.

    In a home environment you have choices of rubber.

    Since its your personal game, you can put whatever rubber that you think plays the best for that game.
    A lot of home games have white rubber because it plays bouncier and has more action.
    It will last a very long time in a home environment.

    #1587 2 years ago
    Quoted from wesman:

    didn't wax the ramps though

    Waxing the ramps keeps the ball tracks down to a minimum.

    Its not perfect but regular use of wax on plastic ramps can hide the ball tracking quite a bit.

    #1589 2 years ago
    Quoted from Axl:

    vid1900 I have cleaned the pf with Novus 2 (it was really dirty) and laid down a coat of chemical guys wax. How can I get the whole playfield to get as shiny as the part that has little ball travel?
    [quoted image]

    Micro scratches in the clear cause it to be dull.

    Use a 3 way polishing technique.

    Carefully use a 2 or 3" sponge buffing mandrel with suitable pads for clearcoat in an orbital buffer or screw gun. Orbital yields the best results.

    If you completely tear down the topside you can use a bigger pad of 4 or 5"

    Run it at 200-300 rpm or lower to avoid burning the clearcoat.

    Do not let it ever go dry. Add drops of water as needed. I use a paintbrush and flick water as needed.

    1. Cut the surface to rub out scratches with rubbing compound. Use care and dont rub thru the paint.


    2, remove rubbing compound scratches with an intermediate polishing compound to bring up the shine.


    3. Rub out with a swirl remover or mirror glaze.

    GO SLOW.

    Any areas that need additional work will show up as you go.

    Lastly wax a couple coats and buff to a suitable sheen with a lambs wool polishing pad.

    IF there are areas that need additional work, the playfield may have to be sanded, clearcoated and repolished.

    #1591 2 years ago
    Quoted from Nokoro:

    His game might come with Titan silicone rings. JJP uses them in DI. Not sure about JJPOTC.

    WOZ and TH come with STC rubber rings and some silicone post sleeves. Latex flipper rubbers.

    Silicone rings are ok.
    I have used them.

    Not as durable as urethane but clean up pretty good.

    They have an ok bounce to them also.

    In my opinion they dont play as good as latex, but that's just me.

    They dont rot as fast as latex that's for sure.

    They can crack off of slings vs shedding of latex.

    Newer modern games with endless multiballs benefit from more durable rubbers regardless of bounce quality.

    Old latex burns up quickly on route.

    I use a combination of rubbers on my games.

    Urethane or silicone for posts or hard to reach areas or high traffic.

    White rubber where I want a more lively bounce. I an using a 2" white rubber on the upper sling in my WOZ. The slow bounce there really needs it.

    Black latex on slings etc.

    Perfect play red flipper rubbers.

    I try to match up the rubber to the gameplay.

    For example: older EM's greatly benefit from white rubber.
    Its way more lively and fun to play.

    #1604 2 years ago
    Quoted from Pinasco:

    First; what a great thread !
    As I understand it, Klean Strips WMP Naphtha would be the prime substance for normal cleaning when there is dirt that wont go away by vacuuming and soft dry towel swipes alone.
    The problem for many of us non-US-pinheads is that the KS WMP Naphtha is not available and hard to buy due to shipping policies for flammable fluids.
    Now a friend of mine who does car paint jobs said that he probably could get me a european brand of naphtha that has the same CAS-number (international classification for chemicals) as the Klean Strip WMP Naphtha.
    Like the KS WMP this is also a hydrotreated light naphtha and has a solubility in water labeled as zero
    ( compared to less than 0,1 % in KS WMP). The KS WMP labels the pure naphtha content to 95-100 % and the substitute from my friend as 100 %.
    So.....and I am no stranger or even hesitant to ask for the obvious or stupid: based on content and especially the fact that those two naphthas have the same CAS-number: it seem right to assume that the available substitute here would be as efficient and safe on the PF as the highly recommended Klean Strip WMP Naphtha ?

    Naptha is Naptha. It's not brand specific.

    Use it to remove wax, especially 30 year old dried up wax.

    It's used as a dewaxing agent for paint preparation.

    For general cleaning you dont have to use it.

    Re-waxing the playfield also removes the old wax. The solvents in the new wax do a good job of refreshing the wax.

    Small quantities of naptha are commonly available and often sold as lighter fluid for the older Zippo style lighters.

    The idea on older playfields is to use no water, or as little as possible. It can cause lifting and swelling of the wood.

    Naptha is good for this as it doesnt hurt plastics and cleans metal.

    But you have to apply new wax after using it as the old wax will be gone.

    Regular waxing cleans the surface very well without the use of naptha.

    Any light detergent like dish soap suds, ammonia free glass cleaner or automotive detailing compounds applied to a towel in small amounts, NOT directly to the surface, can be used for general wipe downs.

    Followed by a dry towel to keep things as dry as possible.

    #1610 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    Hey guys,
    Are spinners becoming stiff a common thing?
    Also, black dust?
    Where would black dust accumulate? I would think near pop bumpers and all, but I don't see any.
    So just curious.
    Trying to work on my 1ST maintenance ever...

    Spinners are always lubricated with the tiniest drop of oil.

    Use super lube on them

    Super Lube 51010 Oil Super Lube amazon.com link »

    #1612 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    Hey guys,
    Are spinners becoming stiff a common thing?
    Also, black dust?
    Where would black dust accumulate? I would think near pop bumpers and all, but I don't see any.
    So just curious.
    Trying to work on my 1ST maintenance ever...

    Black dust covers the entire machine.

    It is formed when the Black coil stops disintegrate due to thousands or millions of impacts from the plungers.

    The plunger in the coil sleeve acts as an air pump with the plunger being a piston to disperse air and dust.

    So most black dust will appear near coil stops or actually in the coil sleeves. And a lot of it will be dispersed in the air and settle pretty much everywhere.

    Vacuuming regularly really helps.

    #1614 2 years ago
    Quoted from Atari_Daze:

    For lube, check this out, seems there are multiple answers!

    I recently applied the super lube.

    I'm a convert and believer !

    #1617 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    Okay so just trying to get this all down.
    1) Vacuum playfield. Underneath playfield I guess
    2) Use a cloth to pick up anything residual
    3) *Optional* Use some compressed air ..
    Easy enough .. here's where it gets a bit fuzzy..
    I bought the Mist-N-Shine. I was going to "clean" with this and then perform the wax. I randomly saw where vid1900 stated that cleaners have solvents or w/e and might mess up the wax.
    On a NIB game w/ under 75 plays (probably) ... can I essentially "skip" the Mist-N-Shine or cleaning for now and go straight to the wax after the vacuuming and wiping and everything?

    Yes skip the mist n shine and use it for between waxing wipe downs.

    #1618 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    Interesting. So this is actually a thing?


    #1621 2 years ago
    Quoted from Atari_Daze:

    Just ordered me a super lube precision oiler, going to give it a go, been using 3 n 1 silicone, curious to see if I notice a difference.

    I use the 3 in 1 too.
    The super lube seems really slippery. And us supposed to remain and lubricate long into the future even after drying.

    We'll see. Its amazing for now lol

    #1625 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    So yea .. just like the tinest dot where the spinner rod goes through the hole, right?
    Do you guys have anything special you like to apply it with or do you just use like a toothpick or other tip, etc

    It comes in a precision oiler tube.

    #1632 2 years ago
    Quoted from pinheadpierre:

    We pinheads tend to use lots of stuff from other industries for our hobby. In the case of automotive stuff - paints, clearcoats, super high grit wet sandpapers, waxes, polishing compounds, cleaners, etc. "Detailing" is just a way of saying "really meticulous deep cleaning" in the world of cars. If you mean that it is not a cleanser, you are correct and thankfully so since we do not want abrasives here. That space is reserved for Novus 2, novus 3 and melamine foam (magic erasers). This stuff does help to get things clean, much the way that a slightly water dampened cloth will pick up stuff better than a dry cloth. Mind you, I'm not getting the cloth or the playfield really wet. I'm just slightly misting the cloth to pick up fine particles that the vacuum did not.

    It works well for what it is: a final wipedown type product that leaves a slick surface behind. I only use it because JJP (Jersey Jack Pinball) recommends it for its early versions of WOZ which tend to suffer light board failure. The board failure seems to be partly related to static electricity and this product allegedly has anti-static properties. Otherwise, I wouldn't be using it. Plain old vacuuming, maybe some occasional novus 1 for detailed wiping or novus 2 for ball trails and such followed by wax is what I usually do. I'm only using the mist-n-shine on WOZ.
    I am suspicious of the film it leaves behind, honestly, though really just out of cautious ignorance. I'd like to know what is left behind that is slippery and can't figure it out. Since folks on pinside come from many different walks of life, it's always worth asking.

    Your over thinking it lol.

    Sparkle glass cleaner sprayed on a rag is a great cleaner for plastics and quick wipe down. But it doesnt have any wax in it.

    Mist n shine is basically window cleaner with a tiny amount of wax in it and it doesnt strip the existing wax.

    We used to use Pledge furnature polish 30 years ago...really bad stuff, but it played fast for a few games. It was easy to get and was a cleaner polish all in one.

    We know better now.
    Any cleaner safe for your car clearcoat is probably ok for the playfield used in moderate amounts.

    #1636 2 years ago
    Quoted from pinheadpierre:

    I would use Sparkle but it seems to have been banned in CA. Not sure why but HD stopped carrying it here and neither HD or amazon will ship it to me.

    Any ammonia free glass cleaner will do.

    Lots of choices out there.

    1 week later
    #1640 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    Okay... just checking.
    I've yet to wax my game for the first time yet, but that's only because it hasn't been getting played lately due to some technical difficulties.

    Good time to wax it when its down.

    #1642 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    Yea, for sure.. I just want to get it working again.
    Test a few times.
    And I promise cleaning/waxing will be my TOP priority.

    You dont have to wax it at all.
    Just replace the entire playfield every so often....

    JJP will gladly sell you a fully populated playfield for 5 or 6 thousand dollars, just drop it in etc.

    If they have the parts or are still in business...

    1 week later
    #1651 2 years ago

    I have found old forgotten jars in my hot garage.
    They perk up perfectly if I put a damp sponge inside and tightly close the lid for a few days.

    1 week later
    #1655 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizardsCastle:

    How often is it recommended to clean and wax? I'm speaking more to modern games 2000+.

    To keep it well protected, every 350 to 500 games.
    Change balls at 500 games or less.

    #1657 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizardsCastle:

    And at that mark, are you going over it with Novus 1/2 and then waxing?

    I never use novus1 other than maybe on plastics.

    I use novus 2 on ball tracks if naptha or lighter fluid doesnt remove them.

    Always wax over the areas I cleaned off.

    I use novus2 sparingly. It's an abrasive and isn't necessary most if the time.

    But deep ball tracks can be rubbed out a bit with novus 2 or rubbing compound #7.

    Naptha and wax does an exceptional job over-all.

    I'm not a fan if abrasives unless there's no other way.

    Theoretically with frequent waxing, you wear the wax instead of the playfield.

    If you get deep ball tracking that is into the clearcoat, you should wax those areas more frequently.

    #1660 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizardsCastle:

    Would this work?

    I just buy it at walmart.

    #1663 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizardsCastle:

    How should they be stored.
    Also, just a dab on a microfiber, and then wipe down pf like you would with Novus 1?

    I just out it on a paper towel.
    Throw it away when dirty or done.

    #1666 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizardsCastle:

    Not sure I understood anybody that, but assuming you meant that you put it on a paper towel, wipe down your pf, and then throw it away when dirty?
    Never knew paper towels were good to use on a pf.

    I use dollar store q-tips dipped in naptha to clean black lines off standup targets, finish with a paper towel moistened with naptha.

    Kirkland paper towels from Costco. They dont leave much lint at all.

    The playfield is clearcoated with automotive clear. It's not that fragile.

    Try to get real here.

    No one wipes the whole playfield with naptha. Only ball track areas if you see black tracking.

    #1670 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizardsCastle:

    So naptha for noticably dirty area (like ball trails).
    Then clean everything off with Mist N Shine and then apply wax?
    How's that for a plan?


    #1671 2 years ago
    Quoted from Azmodeus:

    I only have just one game and blitz is the solution to me. These ceramic coatics sound interesting. I was trying to catch up on the thread but when the ceramics were mentioned I thought, we should try this. Like in an iron maiden. Test purposes...

    I'm interested in this too.
    Modern ceramic coatings are extremely aggresive.

    However there is a question of maintenance way down the road if you needed touch up work.

    The paint will not stick to it and it cannot be removed as its molecularly latched to the surface.

    Auto painters just sand it all off and repaint.

    This cant be done on a playfield.

    #1673 2 years ago
    Quoted from Spiderpin:

    Just waxed my Aerosmith after 365 games. I was working on something else, so while the glass is off may as well wax. Also noticed a screw on a post needed to be tightened the one between pop bumpers.

    Yes, wax time is a good time to look for loose/broken parts

    #1675 2 years ago
    Quoted from Liam:

    Do you understand correctly that for each model of the table, individual care is necessary? Where can I find care instructions for a specific model? Preferably not an expensive option.

    Not each model per se.

    But each generation over the decades.

    Newer games have clearcoated playfields.

    Older single ball games merely had shellac over the inked artwork.

    They all need the same waxing and cleaning techniques however.

    #1677 2 years ago
    Quoted from Who-Dey:

    How come you don't use Novus 1 to clean the playfield?

    Novus 1 is expensive and a terrible cleaner on playfields that are properly waxed.

    Mist n shine is a good cleaner and puts a minute amount of wax back down.

    Its rated for detailing and spot cleaning on cars that have been clearcoated and waxed. Just like a playfield. It is NOT a wax.

    Novus1 is a cleaner for the plastics.
    Used mostly for motorcycle fairings. You can use it on your plastics if you want but you can also use mist n shine on them.

    #1679 2 years ago
    Quoted from joseph5185:

    So in other words ...
    Mist-N-Shine > Novus 1
    Naptha > Novus 2
    Wax for everything else...

    Novus 2 is used to abrasively grind down the clearcoat to remove scratches and deep ball tracks that cleaning wont remove.

    Excessive use of novus 2, will ultimately wear through the clear and rub off the artwork.

    Novus 2 removes the sheen of the clearcoat. You have to buff with mirror-glaze to get it back if you did a large area. Then re-wax.

    So I say, use it sparingly.

    #1684 2 years ago

    Lol novus2 is an abrasive, but it's pretty mild.

    Note that I said excessive use like daily power buffing.

    Novus2 does take the shine off mint freshly cleared playfields though, and you have to re-buff with mirror-glaze to bring it back.

    But if using power buffers it's pretty abrasive. There are milder compounds if you are buffing it a lot.

    #1685 2 years ago

    The problem with novus 1 is that it is so mild it doesn't cut the grease or wax enough to be considered a cleaner.

    Sparkle sprayed on a rag works better and is way cheaper.

    Its mostly for cleaning clear windscreens as it has no wax or abrasives in it.

    Mist n shine is better suited for waxed playfields.

    Novus1 for plastics but why have 2 things? Mist n shine cleans plastics just fine.

    #1686 2 years ago
    Quoted from TheLaw:

    I've been using Novus 2 for a long time & I'm not afraid of it

    I use it all the time for ball tracks. It's great stuff.

    But I scrub by hand in hard to buff areas and dont use it on the complete playfield.

    I power buff with milder compounds to bring it back to looking new after using it.

    #1688 2 years ago
    Quoted from Pinasco:

    I'm following the last exchange of thoughts here with huge interest (like a few hundred other pinheads I guess . )
    pinballinreno: on a dirty mylarcovered pf - would you rely more on naphta or Mist-n-Shine ? Will any of these substances mess with the Mylar so that it becomes miscolored or starts to come loose from the playfield ?

    Naptha usually wont remove mylar but it will clean it pretty good unless dirt is ground into the plastic. It dries fast so it wont lift the edges of the mylar.

    Mist n shine will do little to clean very dirty playfields. It's got a fair amount of water in it so I wouldnt even use it on non clearcoated playfields.

    It's more of a light wipe down solution.

    Naptha is your friend. Mylar is immune to it

    Goo gone cleans, but might lift the mylar edges.
    The orange oil gets in and slowly releases it.

    So I would avoid that.

    Some guys power buff old mylar with novus3 then 2 then mirror glaze. but you have to be super careful and go really slow.

    Treasure cove has a handy kit. Its pricey, but handy. It will buff off mylar.

    It's easy to burn through mylar with power tools.

    Working on old beat up playfields always has its risks.

    #1690 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizardsCastle:

    After putting naptha on paper towels is it safe to just throw in the garbage bin?
    And where do you store you naptha container?

    Yes it's safe to throw paper towels away in the bin, it evaporates really fast. Rags should be stored in a metal bin rated for paint, oil or gasoline.

    Take some care and dont smoke around it.

    Naptha is safe to store in it's original container pretty much anywhere. Its fairly inexpensive at home depot or lowes by the quart as V&P Naptha.

    I have a gallon in my garage and a squirt bottle of Ronson Lighter Fuid in my pinball tool bag.

    Smaller easier to store quantities as sold as Ronson Lighter Fluid in the yellow plastic squirt bottles at Walmart, not the butane aerosol.

    It's also sold as Coleman stove fuel or white gas.

    #1693 2 years ago
    Quoted from mark532011:

    But naphtha takes off the clear coat. So if you use it you have to put a new coat of clear, waxing is not sufficient....correct?

    Naptha will not remove clearcoat.

    Automotive clearcoat is one of the most durable finishes known.

    It rivals powdercoat.

    Its impervious to pretty much anything you apply to it other than urethane reducer.

    Naptha is smelly but pretty mild.
    However it's an awsome cleaner, dewaxer and degreaser.

    Clearcoated playfields dull up after awhile.

    Rolling dented, pitted and scratched heavy steel balls on clearcoat at high speeds is not really recommended.

    Change balls frequently

    Waxing gives you a renewable surface to extend the life of of the clearcoat almost indefinitely.

    Plastic ramps also benefit from waxing.

    Wax reduces ball tracking and dulling on ramps.

    Wax will also extend the life of your plastic ramps.

    #1695 2 years ago
    Quoted from BJM-Maxx:

    Clarifying, Naptha will remove the clear finish off an old pinball machine. A modern clear coat is impervious to Naptha.

    If you see Naptha removing a clear finish, it probably 50 coats of wax that is being removed.

    Naptha will not remove the old shellac or varnish on older playfields.
    Naptha will not dissolve your plastics.
    Naptha is an excellent degreaser for machine parts
    Naptha removes wax.

    Naptha has little affect on dried varnish and shellac.

    Naptha dries so fast its safe to use even on old planking playfields just dont go crazy with it. Used properly it wont even raise the grain on bare wood.

    Woodworkers use naptha and xylene to remove pencil marks and glue fingerprints on bare wood before applying the finish because it doesnt raise the grain,

    The rule of thumb is to use as little as possible to get the job done.
    Excessive use of fluids of any type on and old playfield can raise the grain and leech into the old plywood causing more planking.
    The fluids will get into the areas missing varnish and soak into the wood a little.

    So dont dump it on by the gallon or quart, dont soak the playfield in it.

    Applied to a rag or surface that is wiped up quickly is very safe.

    Stupidly expensive playfield cleaning solutions are primarily VM&P Naptha, sold cheaply in big box stores with a little wax in it.

    It is widely used as a cleaner on all types of woodwork, primarily for removing hardened coats of old wax.

    Rubbing alcohol will dissolve the surface of older playfields though.

    This is why ME and rubbing alcohol works to restore the finish on older games, Alcohol dissolves the surface to expose the ink. This technique yields great results but is very dangerous. Clearcoating is mandatory after varnish removal.

    Shellac is actually made from dissolving shellac beetle flakes into rubbing alcohol.

    Use rubbing alcohol with great care on older games.


    #1702 2 years ago
    Quoted from Skidave:

    I was new to this once. For some reason, most of my machines are neglected when I buy them. I always vacuum with a soft paint brush, Naphtha, Novus 2 then wax. After that, it is just lightly vacuum, and wax as needed. I try for once a month or ever 2 months depending on how much play the kids give the machines. I bought the P21S wax only because I couldn't combine the Blitz with another order.
    I own a boat, the discussions about wax, detailing, brands, methods, etc go on forever. Sorry, I don't have time to compound, claybar, wax, polish, apply detail spray, etc. I like to use and enjoy my toys. A spray of detail spray here and there and wipe down after every use prevents water spots. I spray the interior once or twice a year to prevent suntan lotion stains. I enjoy it more than I work on it. Much like my pins.

    Yep, keep it simple

    #1704 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizardsCastle:

    All this naphtha talk is getting me hot!
    Is this the right stuff?[quoted image]

    You mean the gallon cans in the lower part of the picture, not propane bottles corect?

    see if its 100% naptha. Coleman fuel might have a rust inhibitor in it and leave an oily residue, smear some on glass see if it evaporates completely
    Probably ok for cleaning but you cant clearcoat over it for painting.

    BBQ lighter fluid is also a good source. read the label.

    They dont have Zippo or Ronson Lighter Fluid in canada for a smaller quantity, its super clean and has no additives?


    or this:

    Rona might have BBQ lighter fluid near the BBQ's Its also good.

    I have heard that Varsol paint thinner is used somewhat but it dries slow and is not preferred.

    Zippo lighter fluid is probably your best bet for the money.

    #1710 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizardsCastle:

    Found these on Amazon. The VM&P seems expensive. Would the Zippo fuel work?
    [quoted image]
    [quoted image]

    yes, and walmart carries it. Also the Ronson brand too.
    I like the small bottles. I carry one in my tool bag.

    #1711 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizardsCastle:

    The label on the store shelf said "naphtha".
    Here are a couple of photos of the container:[quoted image][quoted image]

    Its a good price.
    The only way to know if its free of contaminants is to put it on glass and see if it evaporates clean.

    They dont list it, But my understanding is that it has a rust inhibitor in it.

    If it evaporates clean with no residue than you are good to go.

    #1713 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizardsCastle:

    So that Zippo ones is good?

    VM&P naphtha?

    Both of these are very good.

    VM&P naptha is carried by most paint stores. Its very good and fairly inexpensive.

    #1724 2 years ago
    Quoted from fusion:

    Any advise on using simple green to clean off the PF before a new coat of wax?

    Simple green is good sprayed on a rag.

    I wouldnt soak It down though.

    For that matter sparkle glass cleaner works good too, sprayed on a rag. And its ammonia free, good for clearcoat.

    Once you get surface debris off the playfield, the actual wax does a great job of removing old wax and laying down a new coat.

    You will see your applicator get black, just wash it with dish soap and warm water.

    #1728 2 years ago
    Quoted from phillyfan64:

    I tried some of that Mist-N-Shine on my Mata Hari. Holy cow! It plays like a new game. Lightning fast!

    Now that its clean you can wax it to finish the job.

    1 week later
    #1738 2 years ago
    Quoted from Budman:

    But.... isn’t Mist and Shine a “cleaning wax”. If so, I thought those were to be avoided?

    Think of it as a general purpose cleaner like windex or sparkle.

    Spray it on a rag and clean your game.

    Dont soak down the playfield wirh it.

    Dont soak down the playfield with anything really.

    Dont be foolish, drink sensibly etc...

    #1740 2 years ago
    Quoted from Nokoro:

    Its basically a substitute for Novus 1 only a lot better smelling.

    And way cheaper

    #1753 2 years ago

    Just get the blitz 1 grand from Terry at pinball life.

    Its proven and a fair price.


    #1762 2 years ago
    Quoted from scottslash:

    Just used Ronsonol Lighter Fluid on a playfield for the first time. It cleaned my NASCAR *very* well. New rubbers, wax, put it all back together and couldn't be happier. That stuff works "as advertised." [quoted image]

    It's great stuff in a handy small container.

    1 week later
    #1764 2 years ago
    Quoted from Budman:

    Is this the equivalent of Mist N Shine?[quoted image]

    Pretty much

    #1770 2 years ago
    Quoted from Haymaker:

    Worth noting that many (most) QD sprays are silicone based.
    Its been a while since I checked in here, but since I've been hardcore into the automotive detailing scene again, I can't believe how many awesome products that are on the market now. Carnuba based waxes are very old school nowadays (but still have a place). I want to ask vid1900 again if he's experimented with SiO2 based ceramic coatings on pinball machines yet and if he had anything to report. Theres also several other products I am interested in such as liquid sealants, which are much more durable than carnuba, easier to apply and WAY easier to remove than carnuba, and last a lot longer while still delivering amazing gloss and protection. There's even some sprays such as turtle wax seal n shine that have me wondering if theres a better way than the old way. Just wondering if you've had a chance to experiment with any of the exciting products that have made their way to the auto market the past couple years. If you'd like some specific recommendations let me know. I realize good for automotive doesn't necessarily translate to good for pinball, but there should be some overlap.

    The problems with modern ceramic coatings and polymers is that they are difficult to renew. And some are difficult to apply.

    They just are not designed for having a heavy steel ball grind fine metal fillings into them.

    Once applied they stay put, black flings, ball tracks and everything else.

    As an example, Full playfield mylar has been available for decades, it's very durable but It's impossible to renew.

    Carnauba is hard enough and plenty durable, yet can easily be stripped of with naptha and reapplied. You just have to rewax every so often to clean off the metal filings.

    It's not so much about the durability of the coating as it is about being able to renew it.

    #1779 2 years ago
    Quoted from Roostking:

    I need to ask what I am doing wrong, when cleaning. I have a HUO Metallica, being played a couple of times daily. I think I change my balls out often enough. I use Novus 1 for cleaning with nice micro fiber cloths. Mill wax for waxing, but the info in this thread, ill bemoving way from that to either blitz or carnuba.
    With that said, it just seems I have more black ball trails than I would expect. Rubbers are wearing out and some have been replaced already. Are there areas/spots on a pin that need more attention, regardless of title?
    Thanks in advance.

    Black ball tracking is from coil dust pure and simple.

    Clean out all the coils and coil sleeves, wipe down the coil stops etc.

    Clean off the wiring and all of the hidden place that the dust accumulates.

    Clean off all the rubber or replace it after the game us clean.

    Vacuum out everything including the cabinet.

    Blow out everything with compressed air etc...

    Each solenoid is a little air piston that sprays dust everywhere.

    #1782 2 years ago
    Quoted from WizWiggy:

    Is my California bottle of Ronsonol Lighter Fuel that "contains light petroleum distillate", safe to use on my CC'd playfields? pinballinreno
    CAS # 68410-97-9 & # 64742-49-0
    I'm assuming non CA bottles have a different formulation? Do bottles still prominently advertise "contains Naphtha" on the front?
    Thanks[quoted image]


    1 month later
    #1785 2 years ago
    Quoted from Oneangrymo:

    Hey guys this happened to my playfield and I have no idea what to do. I was using Novus 1,2 and 3 on the display in the playfield plastic, but not the playfield, but obviously something happened. I tried waxing this several times, it wont come off
    Anyone have ideas?[quoted image]

    I'm not sure what I'm looking at.
    Looks like clearcoat blush?

    #1787 2 years ago
    Quoted from Oneangrymo:

    Here’s another photo .. again I have no idea how this happened. But it won’t come off ![quoted image]

    It's not a stain.

    It's either clearcoat delamination or moisture in the cure.

    I looks more like trapped humidity in the clear.

    If that's the case it may go away.
    It often does.
    It happens when clear is sprayed in a high humidity environment.

    It sometimes takes months to appear

    Leave it alone.

    #1789 2 years ago
    Quoted from Oneangrymo:

    I hope it’s not from accidentally using that novus on my playfield
    Plastic . I didn’t even use it in this area. Maybe when I sprayed novus 1 on the plastic panel some weeped into the playfield ? Because there are like 3-4 of these spots ?

    The playfield is impervious to anything you might apply.

    They just aren't that delicate once cleared.

    Plus its maple plywood. Pretty durable stuff.

    Don't overthink it.

    #1791 2 years ago
    Quoted from Oneangrymo:

    So just leave it alone and hope it goes away ? Thanks again for ur help it
    Looks about the same today. I’m crossing my fingers[quoted image]

    Basically if its smooth to the touch, wait it out. It can go away.
    I've seen it on cars.

    If it changes for the worst, you will know, and have to re- clear the playfield when it's time.

    #1794 2 years ago
    Quoted from lecter:

    I guys! I'm thinking about cleaning the playfield of my PINBOT. I've read Vid's Guide and I found out that the best cleaner for it is VM&P Naphta manufactured by Klean Strip.
    I my country there's not possible to buy the procucts of this supplier that's why I need to ask you for advice.
    In my country I'm able to buy product called "Nafta" which is used for cleaning tools, for traditional lamps (it's flammable) etc. It is petroleum product and smells terrebly. Do you think this is the same product and it's safe for my playfield?

    Its really hard to say.
    But if its listed as a lamp or cooking fuel, then it's likely the same thing.

    Sometimes you can find coleman cooking fuel, its naptha.

    Naptha is also used here for cleaning tools.

    Yes naptha can smell bad.

    Paint thinner also smells bad and is a lot like naptha but leaves oily redidue sometimes.

    If you smear it on glass and it evaporates clean, it's ok to use.

    Automotive clearcoat is fairly immune to gasoline and fuels like naptha.

    #1797 2 years ago
    Quoted from Oneangrymo:

    I contacted Mirco because its a Mirco playfield. He said its from buffing dust and to use 3M green polish maybe needs a buffer. As long as its not a clear coat issue, and not going to get worse, I may just leave it alone, unless someone knows someone in Michigan who can come to my house and fix this?

    Buffing dust would come off with a little naptha.

    If not, wait it out.

    1 month later
    #1800 2 years ago

    Spraying fluids, especially water based fluids will have unpredictable results.

    It's best to apply them to a rag and then use them.

    This way you can control where they go.

    #1801 2 years ago
    Quoted from arcyallen:

    Forgive me if I missed this after only reading the first 900 or so posts in this thread, but how does the above reconcile with your oft-quoted
    "Wipe with soft cloth moistened with Novus1 or Simple Green"?
    Do you mean don't spray Simple Green DIRECTLY onto the playfield but it's ok to apply with a towel? Or is there some other hidden meaning between these two apparently conflicting directives? Also, are you diluting the Simple Green per the label or using it full strength? My No Fear is waiting patiently for a response. And thanks for all the info so far!

    Dont bother with novus 1 or novus 3.

    Use mist n shine and novus2.

    Use novus 2 for heavy ball tracks that wint wipe off, followed with pure carnauba like blitz 1000 or P21S silver.

    Other than that, VM&P Naptha to clean mechanical parts and badly soiled playfied targets and such.

    Always re-wax the playfield in areas that naptha was used as a cleaner. It readily removes wax.

    Oddly naptha wont harm anything on the playfield.

    #1803 2 years ago
    Quoted from RWH:

    It's the only thing I use to remove wax, no residue to deal with.

    Naptha is a wonderful thing!

    #1806 2 years ago
    Quoted from Who-Dey:

    It's weird, everyone I know uses Novus 1 to clean their playfield and these guys all know their shit. That's all I've ever used because I learned from them and my games are super clean. I'm not trying to argue because I'm certainly not an expert on the subject but Novus 1 seems to do a fantastic job for me.

    Novus1 is a plastic cleaner.

    Mist n shine is a clearcoat cleaner. It has more wax in it and is better suited for playfields, ramps and plastics.

    They are similar. Mist n shine is way cheaper and better.

    Sparkle glass cleaner is also a good ammonia free cleaner that is safe to use on everything, including anti-glare treated playfield glass.

    #1808 2 years ago
    Quoted from RWH:

    Spray way glass cleaner, nothing better, cleans and polishes the glass.

    And its ammonia free!

    4 weeks later
    #1813 2 years ago
    Quoted from Murphdom:

    So I picked up a machine from the 1960’s that was absolutely filthy and it literally had caked on dirt. I used the old naphtha method and it did absolutely nothing in terms of cleaning. It has done wonders for me in the past. For the first time I used simple green on a barely damp microfiber cloth and I have to say it worked amazing. I know that there is a huge debate whether or not to use water based cleaners on playfields but if you wipe it off immediately it should be fine. Vid actually contradicts himself in his guide at one point and says to never use water based cleaners and then about ten pages later he actually mentions the use of simple green to remove dirt rather than grind it in using Novus. I’m converted.

    Discrete use is ok and can yield great results.

    Purple power is also really effective in tiny doses.

    Generally on a rag. Not flooded onto the playfield.