(Topic ID: 181165)

Corvette Racetrack Problem ***Fixed***


By pindude80

2 years ago



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#1 2 years ago

I just completed a shop job on my Corvette. I was having a problem before the shop job where the red car wouldn't go all the way to the top of the racetrack or if it did it wouldn't reset to the bottom. During the shop job I replaced both internal racetrack boards with the re-designed units from Great Lakes Modular. I also converted the board connectors from IDC connectors to Molex connectors. It passes the track test mode every time and the cars cycle to the top of the track and back down when I boot the game up.

I was playing it last night. Sometimes during a racetrack mode the cars will only go about 1/3 of the way up the track and then it will end the racetrack mode. Does anyone have any ideas on why this is happening? I was beginning to think possibly a bug in the software? My game is running LX-2 software.

#2 2 years ago

help bump

#5 2 years ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

That doesn't sound like a board issue to me, sounds like a mechanical issue.
Good luck is all I can say. The diagram makes taking that thing apart look like a nightmare.

I don't think it's a mechanical issue. It operates smoothly and passes the test mode everytime. I had it apart to put the new boards in it when I shopped the game out and everything looked good. I think I'm going to look for cold solder joints on the under PF racetrack board next.

#6 2 years ago
Quoted from pindude80:

I was playing it last night. Sometimes during a racetrack mode the cars will only go about 1/3 of the way up the track and then it will end the racetrack mode. Does anyone have any ideas on why this is happening? I was beginning to think possibly a bug in the software? My game is running LX-2 software.

Tonight I re-flowed all of the connector pins. I put the board back in and started experimenting with the glass off.

What I noticed tonight is that sometimes if you don't hit any playfield switches while in a racetrack mode the cars will only go about 1/3 of the way and end the mode, but if you hit switches it will advance the blue car and both will race to the top. Can anyone tell me if you don't hit any switches in a racetrack mode should the game end the mode before the red car (opponent) gets to the top? I would think you should be able keep trying to catch the red car (opponent's) until it reaches the top and that would end the mode. I guess what I am trying to get at is: should the racetrack mode only end once the red car reaches the top or is it correct if no switches are hit and it ends the mode before either car reaches the top?

#7 2 years ago

I played a few games last night. Everything seemed good with my racetrack at first, but on my last game I started a mode and it ended the mode within about 3 seconds. I don't think the cars even moved, but not for sure on that.

Can anyone tell me what to look at it? This is driving me crazy because the game looks awesome and everything else works great. Could it have anything to do with software or dipswitch settings?

Any help or suggestions is much appreciated.

#9 2 years ago

I also thought one of the cars had to make it to the top to declare a winner, but my racetrack hasn't worked right since I got the game so I wasn't for sure.

I replaced both opto boards with new units from Great Lakes Modular. The opto gap is really narrow on those optos and I doubt something is tripping them, but I guess it's possible. It does declare someone won the race, usually the computer wins, but last night it said I won after about 3 seconds in the mode.

#12 2 years ago
Quoted from CadillacMusic:

It may have a software compensation thing going on from when it didn't work before. Have you tried a factory reset?

No, I have not tried a factory reset, but that seems like a good idea and I will try that next, thanks!

#13 2 years ago
Quoted from CadillacMusic:

Also, a drop in voltage can make the game think an opto is getting interrupted. When you run the race test (not the self test, but when you run it manually), it works fine? Have you checked the plugs? Those tiny little wires get loose sometimes. Jam a little flathead screwdriver in there to make sure they're snug and secure.

When you say run it manually do you mean running in game mode? I changed over the factory IDC connectors to Molex connectors to get a better connection than the IDCs.

#16 2 years ago
Quoted from CadillacMusic:

I mean that you should be able to run the cars forwards and backwards with the plus and minus buttons in test, and I thought there should be some kind of feedback about the state of the switches. Little boxes that have X's in them or not.

I've never done this before, but I will mess around with it tonight.

#17 2 years ago
Quoted from CadillacMusic:

The reason I ask is that it sounds very like what happens with the reel in fishtales. The motor control board has inductors on it that fail, and it means you get a pulse back up the line when the motor activates. This messes with the optos something awful, and sometimes you can catch it in test mode.

Do you know what I should be looking for?

#20 2 years ago

More bad news. I just went to do the race track test and noticed that neither the ZR1 moved or race track at startup. I tried to run both of their tests in test mode and both failed. I did a factory reset and they still didn't move. I checked all the fuses on the boards in the backbox they tested ok. I looked for an under PF fuse, but couldn't locate one.

Any ideas? I'm at a loss

#21 2 years ago
Quoted from pindude80:

More bad news. I just went to do the race track test and noticed that neither the ZR1 moved or race track at startup. I tried to run both of their tests in test mode and both failed. I did a factory reset and they still didn't move. I checked all the fuses on the boards in the backbox they tested ok. I looked for an under PF fuse, but couldn't locate one.
Any ideas? I'm at a loss

All 4 coils are there. I did a continuity test on them from the backside of the board and they all had continuity, don't know if that tells us anything or not.

#23 2 years ago

it was closed

#27 2 years ago
Quoted from CadillacMusic:

Did one of the plugs on the power board come loose? It'd be the three in the lower left corner. Double check fuses 116 and 115.

Not sure, I will check these tonight.

Quoted from CadillacMusic:

And check your two 12v voltages on the power board. Both regulated and unregulated.

Ok, will do this also.

Thanks for all of your advice and help so far

#28 2 years ago
Quoted from Kawydud:

I had issues with my racetrack after a league night. The left car would go up the track and you could hear the motor still going. During test I found that the upper opto was not registering after the car left the bottom opto. The track uses two different types of optos. When the car is in the parked position, the lower opto just recognizes that the car is back at ground zero, it just breaks the beam. The upper optos actually measure the movement of the car, they count how many times the opto is made and broken. Mine had a bad upper opto since it wasn't measuring that the car was moving. If the car on the left moves up the track and then the test fails, it would be an issue with the upper opto. If the left car never moves to begin with, there is probably something wrong with the lower opto.

I replaced both boards with the Great Lakes Modular set so I hope that's not the problem, but I will check the opto readings in test mode once I get the track to work again.

#30 2 years ago
Quoted from Kawydud:

Put it in test mode and see if it is breaking the opto signal at the start position. If it isn't, the car won't ever move.

Yeah I'm going to check them, but up until last night the cars at least moved, but wouldn't end the modes correctly.

#32 2 years ago
Quoted from CadillacMusic:

No thanks needed. We're getting a corvette from another operator soon, so it's helpful for me to review how all the toys work, because I'm sure they won't be working right.

Yeah they both seem to be problematic, especially the racetrack.

#33 2 years ago

Ok, just done looking at a few things, here's what I came up with
a.) fuse 115 and 116 were pulled off the board and both tested fine
b.) TP 1, 2, and 3 all tested normal
c.) TP 7 shows 20v written on the board, I got .5v
d) the top led, D19, on the CPU board isn't lit (it's a Rottendog board if that makes any difference)
e.) ZR1 motor control board in backbox led doesn't light up
f) I noticed a led between c5and c11 on the power driver board that is not lit up, I'm not sure it's supposed to or not, there is no labeling by it.

#34 2 years ago

I just talked to a good friend of mine who know's these games pretty well and he gave me feedback on what I found last night

c.) this is for the flashers and the coin door must be closed to properly check this voltage. I'm not sure if I had the coin door closed or not, I will double check this
d.)this led should turn off about 1 second and stay off. I didn't look to see if it came on at bootup
f.) this is probably a high/low voltage led that might flicker sometimes, but for the most part stays unlit

So seems like I might not have a power driver board problem. I am still curious as to why the led on the ZR1 motor board in the backbox isn't lit.

1 week later
#35 2 years ago

After a lot of diagnosing/part replacement it turns out the coin door interlock switch went bad and was cutting the power even with the door closed.

Last night we "jumped" the coin door interlock switch and the ZR1 and racetrack started to work again. Same problems with the racetrack though where it would end the mode before the cars reached the top. My friend happened to notice the cars' progress on the dmd doesn't match the cars' progress on the track- see video. The red car is only partially up the racetrack, but on the dmd it shows it reaching the top which ends the mode. This problem isn't limited to just the red car, sometimes the blue car will do it.

I went into test mode and advanced the cars manually, occasionally it would do like in game play where one car would go to the top on the dmd, but not on the racetrack and end the mode, but it does this A LOT more in game play than in test mode.

Anyone have any ideas on what I can look at? As I mentioned the racetrack boards have been replaced with new units from Great Lakes Modular

Video: https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B8LKsouTS1igdllQNm9kTjcwWFE

#36 2 years ago

I just replaced the IDC connector that is on the racetrack board mounted under the PF with a molex connector with trifurcon connectors, no change, cars still go to the top of the track on the dmd and end the race.

#37 2 years ago

So to me it seems like the cpu is seeing a bunch of opto switch registrations at once and that is why the car position on the screen moves to the top so fast when it messes up. It's like something is freaking out the opto signal to the computer, but I don't know what is causing it.

I was going to take the racetrack apart and inspect it, but I don't think the problems in there. All that it is as far as this is concerned is those two boards that are new, two connectors, which I converted to molex and the wiring, which if I remember right is a shrink tube type housing.

Anyone know what could cause the cpu to see a bunch of phantom opto registrations?

#38 2 years ago
Quoted from CadillacMusic:

The reason I ask is that it sounds very like what happens with the reel in fishtales. The motor control board has inductors on it that fail, and it means you get a pulse back up the line when the motor activates. This messes with the optos something awful, and sometimes you can catch it in test mode.

I was re-reading the posts in this thread and forgot about this. I looked at the manual, the motor control board and the opto boards in the racetrack both use J116-3 on the power driver board for ground so maybe it could be causing the problem as Cadillac mentioned? I did run a continuity test on the inductors and they all showed continuity, but not sure if that is conclusive or not on considering them good. If I were to replace the conductors does anyone know where I can get them from?

#39 2 years ago

Monday Morning tech help needed bump.

#41 2 years ago

I kind of doubt it has anything to do with the optos. It did this same thing with the original boards and now doing it with the replacement boards. Putting in test mode and manually doing it might show something, but I don't think I can manually turn the wheels since they are inside the racetrack. I guess I can push the cars, but not sure if that would damage anything. I'm thinking it wouldn't because it would just make the string slip over their cogs, but not sure.

1 week later
#43 2 years ago

My friend and I replaced the caps and inductors on the racetrack motor board yesterday, unfortunately my problem still exists We are considering replacing the LM339 quad chip on the racetrack motor board next. Does anyone know if this chip is anyway tied to the switch matrix or anything else that we might be able to look at?

#45 2 years ago

I think I'm going to do as Kawydud said and bypass the motor board and move the cars manually. I will take the track apart and disconnect the cables that drive the cars, put it in test mode, manually move the cars and see if I get any phantom opto registrations.

#46 2 years ago

Interesting development. I unplugged only the 2 motor connectors off of the motor board and turned the game on. I went into a race mode and to my surprise the car "postions" on the dmd moved, I thought they would stay still since the cars weren't physically moving. Everytime I hit a target it would show the blue car advancing like it should. I did this about 6 or 7 times, the display never showed a car prematurely winning a race like it did before. I plugged the motor connectors back in, turned the game on and on the first race it did just like it had done before showing one car going on the display going straight to the top and ending the race early.

Does that clue anyone into what could be happening?

#47 2 years ago

I wasted about 2 hours on Corvette last night. I took the track off the game and took it apart. Everything looked good. I removed the cables that drive the cars so I could manually advance the cars to see if I got the phantom opto hits. The more I thought about it the more I realized it wasn't going to work because without the cables nothing would turn the opto wheels so I put it all back together; it's a real PITA to re-install the cables and get everything right and it not fly apart in your hands, which it did to me quite a few times.

I re-installed the track, and put it in test mode. I manually pushed the cars up the track and no phantom hits of any source. I noticed every time the opto count hits 670 it ends the mode no matter the position of the car. So it seems to me that in game mode the computer somehow thinks it's seeing the 670 opto count and ending the mode. I wonder if the ROM code might have a bug in it causing this?

#49 2 years ago

I was looking at Corvette some more last night. I ran the racetrack test mode, it passed as always, but I noticed when the cars returned to the start position the zero opto count box wasn't checked- see pic. I manually moved the car about 1/4 inch and it highlighted the box then. I then ran the test a few more times. Sometimes all the boxes would be highlighted and then other times the right car zero position wouldn't be highlighted, then the left wouldn't be, etc.

As you tell I'm having inconsistent results and think this might lead to the problem I've been having. Does anyone have any insight as to what is going on and why I'm not getting all boxes checked every time.

IMG_20170319_190833493 (resized).jpg

2 weeks later
#53 2 years ago

The saga continues. Last week I got a U6 checksum error so I pulled the game rom chip to find 2 of the legs were broken off. I thought for sure this would be the cause of my racetrack problem so I ordered a new chip. I installed the new chip and was still getting the checksum error and problem with the racetrack. I thought maybe the there was a problem with the rottendog replacement board that is in the game so I pulled the factory CPU board out of Dirty Harry, put the new Corvette rom and security chip in Dirty Harry's board, installed it and was getting the same results. I thought maybe it could be a problem with the power driver board, even though I kind of doubted it, but I've checked about everything else so I pulled the power driver board out of my White Water and put it in Corvette, no change.

I disconnected the connectors on the racetrack board that power the motors in the racetrack as I did before and the car positions in the race mode act according to what switches are hit with no run away car syndrome on the dmd like I see when the motors are plugged in. The game is a re-import and I got to thinking I wonder if the people who set it back up for the US did it right and how I can check?

#55 2 years ago
Quoted from CadillacMusic:

You really shouldn't still be getting a checksum error. Check to see if there are any broken bits left in the socket. You can't diagnose anything properly with that error going on.

thanks for the reply! I used a magnifying glass and didn't see any broken legs left in the holes. I put the rom on my dirty harry cpu, even in the dirty harry machine I was still getting the error, so it looks like it points to a bad rom.

#56 2 years ago
Quoted from CadillacMusic:

You really shouldn't still be getting a checksum error. Check to see if there are any broken bits left in the socket. You can't diagnose anything properly with that error going on.

I received a replacement U6 Rom yesterday from Action Pinball, excellent service by the way, no more checksum error, but as suspected I still have the racetrack problem.

Anyone have any advice on what to look at now?

#58 2 years ago

If I follow you correctly the fins, are underneath the cars themselves. I don't believe the optos are shining through because it always registers the cars at the home position, which I believe is the only time the fins are used. The problem is when the cars advance up the track and their movement is tracked by a slotted wheel on each of the cars that turns as the cars move, once it sees 670 opto counts the game ends the racetrack mode.

#59 2 years ago

Monday morning tech help needed bump

#60 2 years ago

thursday bump

8 months later
#62 1 year ago

Hello my old friends, I'm back, but not for a good reason. I thought i updated this thread over the summer when a friend and I did some diagnosing with my racetrack in his game, but I guess I didn't. I took my racetrack over to a friend's house who has a nice Corvette. We put my reproduction boards in his track and had the same problem I did with my racetrack in my game. We then put his factory track boards in my track, installed in his game and it worked properly. We came to the conclusion the reproduction boards I had were bad. I ordered a new reproduction set from Mad Amusements I believe it was. I got them over the summer and I didn't put them in until this weekend because I had summer projects going on, new pins in the house and Corvette was pushed off into the corner. Now that winter is fully upon us I installed the new boards in my track and put the track in the game. I thought for sure it was going to be fixed and I would be back to playing a fully functional Corvette. On my first test it screwed up and did just like it did before with the previous boards.

I am thinking it's either a bad connection in my game on the harness, a bad wire in my game, another bad racetrack board or those reproduction boards just flat out were designed wrong and don't work. Does anyone have any experience using the Great Lakes Modular boards? I guess my next step is to find a set of factory racetrack boards, but I'm not thoroughly convinced that is the problem at this point, might be something in my game, but the reproduction board in my friends game had the same result/error as in my game.

Anyone have any ideas or suggestions?

#64 1 year ago
Quoted from Kawydud:

Do you have all of the original boards? I have extra optos that I ordered when fixing my boards. If you want to send them, I take a crack at repairing them and testing them in my Corvette.

I am not sure, it's been over a year since I swapped them out, but I don't think I would have thrown them away. They had some previous repairs done on them and a friend that helps me with board stuff recommended getting the replacement boards instead of messing with the originals. I can look for them and if I can find them would definitely take you up on your offer. Thanks!

#66 1 year ago
Quoted from Kawydud:

Sounds good, just shoot me a message if you find them.

I'll look tonight. Thanks for the offer!!

#68 1 year ago
Quoted from Iizi:

I had my board modded by previous owner. Rightside opto was replaiced with 4-legged instead of 5-legged and modifications were made accordingly. I fixed it back to original and have had no issues since. I think 4-legged opto was too sensitive, and i could see it giving rapid phantom hits in test mode when moving car manually.

Did yours end the race early during game mode even if the cars weren't physically at the top of the track? So it sounds like the factory is a 5-legged opto and that's what it needs to be. Replacing optos is beyond my skill set and tools I have, but Kawydud offered above to look at boards for me.

#71 1 year ago
Quoted from mjwilliams:

I am fighting a couple issues on my Corvette at the moment too. I just received a set of the Great Lakes Modular Boards. Did you ever determine if they are indeed designed wrong or is it just your set that is bad? Have you talked with GLM about the boards? I haven't put mine in yet and I will not have the chance to install the boards for a while, so I am curious what you find out

Well, still not sure. Before when we put the GLM boards in my friend's game that was working fine with his factory boards and it started screwing up with the GLM boards. GLM actually ended up screwing me and not refunding me for the bad boards or replacing them as he said he would and quit responding to my emails I ordered another set from Mad Amusements, those are the ones I put in last weekend and it was doing the same thing. I am going to try and find my factory boards who a fellow Corvette owner graciously volunteered to check out for me so I guess that is my next step.

#74 1 year ago
Quoted from mjwilliams:

Just want to make sure you realize that the MadAmusements boards are also GLM boards. I called MadAmusements with a question about the boards a couple weeks ago and they said I had to call and talk to GLM with any questions. I ran out of time for more calls and never did call GLM.

yes I do know they are GLM boards. GLM screwed me as I mentioned and wouldn't refund or replace my boards and I needed a set so I didn't have much of a choice but to buy another set. Did you ever try to get in touch with GLM? I'm not sure if he got caught up or past whatever was going on in his life, but others posted the same thing that he wouldn't communicate.

2 weeks later
#76 1 year ago

Kawydud tested my boards and here was his response to me on what he found: I took apart my racetrack tonight and installed your original boards and went through the tests. I hate to tell you, but the boards tested out perfect. I even took a video of it that I can send you. Then I also took your brand new boards and installed them into my game, same thing, things tested perfect. So there has to be something else going on with your game I think.
I would suspect wiring at some point, because your original boards were repaired at one point, they had original traces lifted on them that someone jumped out with a soldered wire. Who knows what else may have been messed with.

I guess I will do some continuity tests next from the wires in the racetrack to the backbox and see what comes of that.

1 week later
#78 1 year ago
Quoted from Iizi:

My faulty boards also passed tests with no problems, weird behaviour only occurred during gameplay.

I almost forgot about this, this is exactly how many acted in the past. It would generally always pass the test mode, maybe one in 10 time fail, but pretty much always messed up in game play. I am in search of another track to try in my game to see what happens.

#79 1 year ago

I think we did this before, but I couldn't remember for sure and didn't document it. My friend took my 10-opto board home and tried it in his MM since it runs the same board, he said his game played fine with my board in it. We are also going to put his MM opto board in my Corvette and see what happens, but I don't think is the problem with my game.

#81 1 year ago

Yeah man this Corvette has really put up a fight. I forgot to mention that last weekend my friend and I continuity checked the wiring in the racetrack, from the racetrack to the opto board and to the cpu board, all tested ok, so it doesn't appear to be a wiring problem at this point and like he said if it was a wiring problem it would more than likely not work at versus give us the screwy stuff it's doing.

1 month later
#83 1 year ago

nope, haven't solved it yet. My game has a Rottendog MPU board in it, I swapped the factory board out of my Dirty Harry and it did the same thing. I'm glad you got yours fixed, hopefully one day I will be able to say the same thing.

7 months later
#84 1 year ago

Update: the never-ending racetrack saga may have come to an end, finally I ordered new 5-legged optos for the opto count board from Marco and one of my good pinball buddies installed them for me. I put the track back together last night and it didn't work at first; the red car would go to the top and the motor would keep going. I went into test mode and it didn't show the home position so I got one of my Great Lakes Modular home boards, installed it, ran the test and it passed a couple times so I went to test it in game mode. I really wasn't expecting it to work because of everything we went through with no luck, but I ran the race in various ways about 10 or more times with the glass off then played the race track mode at least 10 times in true game play and it worked great!

When my friend got my board he tested everything and it all tested ok, but he went ahead and installed the optos to try it out. I called him last night with the good news and he said a couple of the through holes for the optos looked a little rough so he worked his magic and did an install method that beefed up the connection.

Thanks to everyone who offered their help and advice in getting this fixed! Since this game has been down so long and it's back from the dead it's almost like getting a new game!

#86 1 year ago

You and me both! The only bad part is I kicked the game out to my 3-seasons room that isn't climate controlled a few months back when I needed room and my brand new ramp flaps that a friend made for me are covered in rust!

#88 1 year ago

You and me both! It's been a long and frustrating journey. Heck no I'm not ready to trade it, I haven't played it until now in over a year so it's like getting a new game!!

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