(Topic ID: 264892)

Creature troubleshooting help?


By Forester

12 days ago



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  • 8 posts
  • 3 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 days ago by Forester
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#1 12 days ago

Hey everyone-

As a public school teacher who now suddenly has extra time on his hands, I've finally jumped in to fixing a few odds and ends on my Creature from the Black Lagoon. The two big (unrelated) issues I'm having right now:

1) The left flipper is not holding. A quick tap of the flipper button and flipper works as usual, but hold the button and flipper flips quickly and stays in the down position. Right flipper performs as usual.

Test results at startup: Check switch 64, check switch 65, F1 R Flipper EOS, F3 L Flipper EOS.

So far I have cleaned the optos on both sides and pulled and checked the fuses on the Fliptronic II board. Fuses were fine, clean optos made no difference (although they were filthy).

What should I look at next? Any way to adjust the EOS on one side? Get a new one?

2) Sadly, my Mike D mod is no longer working. My guess is overheating caused whatever is going on. The monitor is fine - I connected it to another HDMI source and it works. I tried connecting the HDMI out on the Raspberry Pi to another TV and got nothing.

Pulled the flashdrive to check what was on it (never done that before) and it appears to be unformatted. I don't have a micro SD reader, so I haven't checked what's on it yet. What what on the flashdrive originally? Did the micro SD get wiped out? Has anyone else had issues with this mod getting too hot?

There are lights on both the Raspberry Pi board and the custom Mike D board underneath it. After startup, there are lots of different lights that light up on the "fuel gauge" on the side of the Mike D board, so I'm hoping it's not cooked.

Any help troubleshooting would be greatly appreciated!

#2 12 days ago

64 & 65, check the switch matrix in your manual. Might need adjusting or the wire color for the "6" might have a broken wire at 63 or 67.

EOS - look your EOS wires over, a broken wire can kill both of them if it came off.

Flipper- check the hold winding for a cold solder joint at the coil lug, broken wire, or a crack or break in the thin wire from the coil winding to the coil lug.

LTG : )

#3 11 days ago

Your SD card is corrupt. You have to reformat using info on the thumb drive. Mine has failed 4 times.

I can email the Mike D instructions on how to reformat a new SD card.

#4 11 days ago

Mike-

If you could email the Mike D instructions, that would be amazing! However, the thumb drive plugged into my Raspberry Pi has nothing on it. I'm gonna need help with those files as well. PM me and I can get you my email.

Have you had any issues with this mod overheating or with the power source? In the past, if I left the game on for more than an hour, the Mike D mod would get squirrely - sometimes glitching out, sometimes shifting to only red graphics. Machine has been not plugged in for a year, and now that I've got it in it's new location and I want to play it, the mod doesn't work at all.

Thanks for your offer to help!

#5 10 days ago
Quoted from LTG:

64 & 65, check the switch matrix in your manual. Might need adjusting or the wire color for the "6" might have a broken wire at 63 or 67.
EOS - look your EOS wires over, a broken wire can kill both of them if it came off.
Flipper- check the hold winding for a cold solder joint at the coil lug, broken wire, or a crack or break in the thin wire from the coil winding to the coil lug.
LTG : )

Such an easy fix for the flipper hold issue once I read this message and took the time to look over the left flipper coil. My soldering iron and a bit of solder and the flipper holds again.

One problem solved! Of course as I played it and checked it out after re-attaching the lead, I found other issues I'll need help solving...

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#6 5 days ago

My update-

I re-soldered a loose connection on the ramp switch and both the 64 & 65 switch errors went away. Reinstalled the switch, realized it was backwards, re-reinstalled it. Works fine.

I checked the EOS on both side. Re-soldered a janky looking connection, but I am still getting EOS errors in the test report. What's my next troubleshooting step? Should I put in new EOS?

drummermike and that_pin_dude have been incredible helpful in getting me what I need to re-create the image on the SD card in the Mike D mod, RPi. I'm working on that now and will see how it goes this evening.

However - here's the next issue I could use help with. This image shows how far the outhole kicker sits in normal play action. When a ball drains, the machine is not recognizing it at first. The outhole kicker arm or end seems like it sits in the way. Eventually the machine will kick the ball over to where it needs to be, but something is not right and it also slows down play. Any suggestions?

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#7 5 days ago
Quoted from Forester:

Any suggestions?

Clean the mechanism. Figure out what it is binding on. Things like that.

Quoted from Forester:

Should I put in new EOS?

No. Fix the problem. New EOS won't do that. From the EOS switches you have a break in wiring from them to the fliptronics board. Run the wires down. If both left and right report errors, then start with a common wire to both, it breaks or comes off, both don't work.

LTG : )

#8 3 days ago
Quoted from LTG:

Clean the mechanism. Figure out what it is binding on. Things like that.

No. Fix the problem. New EOS won't do that. From the EOS switches you have a break in wiring from them to the fliptronics board. Run the wires down. If both left and right report errors, then start with a common wire to both, it breaks or comes off, both don't work.
LTG : )

Well ltg - as usual, you were right. I pulled out the outhole kicker, thoroughly cleaned it and it now works. Thank you for the clear, common sense advice. It was binding on pinball gunk. Every once in a while I find a reminder that this machine is over 25 years old.

I've checked the EOS switches and the soldering at both ends is clean, no loose wires. I can't see any breaks in the wires, but I can see the common orange wire. It looks like a solid connection back the the Fliptronics board, but the voltmeter was out in the garage and I was feeling lazy, so checking for continuity is tomorrow's project.

Cleaned kicker pic below...

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