(Topic ID: 243423)

Diagnosing drop target on Black Knight...Help!

By Destin

9 months ago

Topic Stats

  • 27 posts
  • 8 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 months ago by Destin
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider


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    #1 9 months ago

    I have a Williams Black Knight 1980 vintage, Everything was working on game and I went and replaced bulbs with LED's and added a special solenoid fuse block from NAVRAM. I think everything was working shortly after doing these two upgrades but I played a little later and the lower right drop targets are not working.

    Went to solenoid test mode and nothing happens as it tests solenoid #3 which corresponds with this drop target. Looked at all wiring thinking I may have knocked something loose but all wires underneath look good. Everything else works on game so I don't think there is a single fuse for this one drop target.

    I am somewhat capable of doing simple repairs if I have some guidance on what and how to test to track down this problem. Thanks for any suggestions!

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    #2 9 months ago

    First make sure you can push the lift plate by hand up to reset the bank.

    #3 9 months ago

    Yes, I can reset the lift plate/targets without difficulty.

    #4 9 months ago

    Well let's try and isolate this down. The coil worked fine before, so that's likely good. Did you have the game off when changing lights? I'm not familiar with that fuse block so you may need to provide a link to the info for use to see if that could be related.

    Does it try to fire the coil at all? Or does nothing at all happen?

    #5 9 months ago

    Here is a link to the solenoid saver I installed: https://nvram.weebly.com/repair--conversion-kits.html

    I do not see any attempt at firing when testing the solenoid.

    Yes, the game was unplugged while changing lights and installing fuse block.

    Here is a picture of the special solenoid saver installed

    Thanks for helping!!

    fuse (resized).jpg

    #6 9 months ago

    One additional item I just remembered.

    When playing the game, and the targets are staying down, the game keeps triggering the lights and activating the magna save so at least some of the wiring is registering that the targets are down...so some of the drop target wires are working.

    #7 9 months ago

    Have you tried to isolate the Solenoid saver? Remove the solenoid saver, to see if maybe there is a problem with the solenoid saver. I realize it is a rather simple device but at least eliminate that possibility.

    Also maybe while installing the Solenoid saver you bumped a connector that now may not be making good contact.

    #8 9 months ago

    If you haven't already, pull the fuse associated with the coil and test it with a meter to make sure it's good. It's possible the coil shorted to something and blew a fuse.

    #9 9 months ago

    I did reconnect the wire directly and took the solenoid saver out of the loop but no change.

    I have not tested any fuses....since all other solenoids are working I thought a fuse wouldn't be the cause.....does this solenoid have a separate fuse??
    I am not at the game location or I would go test the fuses before answering but I assumed their were more than just that solenoid on a fuse.

    I thought about the wire harness being jiggled. I think it is the one just below where the solenoid saver connector goes. I did wiggle those wires on that connector but didn't get the droptarget to work.

    I realize all the connectors to the board are original and should probably be replaced but haven't started that project yet.

    Is there a way to test the solenoid/wires to see if they are getting power?

    Would this be a board issue?

    Thanks for suggestions!

    #10 9 months ago

    Have you tested to see if you are getting voltage at the coil?

    How about resistance to see if the coil itself happens to be bad? You can use the chart below or just compare readings to a known good one on another set of targets.


    #11 9 months ago

    I have not....mainly because I am not sure how to do this....

    To test voltage, game must be on obviously, but do I need to have a game started or just power to pinball game?
    I have a multi-meter but need some help on what to set it on and where to place the probes

    I have seen a video for testing resistance and it looks like you put meter on ohms and put probes on each end of coil to test. Will this test both the coil and also the diode?? Or can I test those separately??

    Sorry for lack of knowledge but each time I work through an issue with this game I am slowly learning!
    Thanks for help!

    #12 9 months ago

    According to chart, 5.3 is resistance for my coil. I will check when I get home.

    #13 9 months ago

    To test the voltage to the coil, the game must be on, and a game started. To test resistance, the game must be off. To test a diode on a coil, one side of the diode must be lifted off of the coil.

    #14 9 months ago

    Edit: i misread your post! Sorry good news is you're in good hands here

    #15 9 months ago
    Quoted from Destin:

    I have not....mainly because I am not sure how to do this....
    To test voltage, game must be on obviously, but do I need to have a game started or just power to pinball game?
    I have a multi-meter but need some help on what to set it on and where to place the probes
    I have seen a video for testing resistance and it looks like you put meter on ohms and put probes on each end of coil to test. Will this test both the coil and also the diode?? Or can I test those separately??
    Sorry for lack of knowledge but each time I work through an issue with this game I am slowly learning!
    Thanks for help!

    No problem. You are on the right track and we will get this sorted. To measure the resistance on the coil set the meter or ohms and just measure across the lugs of the coil with the game off. Compare the measurements to a known good coil of the same type, so another drop target bank.

    To measure voltage, you want the game on (be careful) and the red lead of your meter (set to DC volts) on a coil lug and the black lead to ground, I usually just grab the ground strap in the cabinet.

    Let us know what you get and we will go from there.

    #16 9 months ago

    Thanks! Will do!

    #17 9 months ago

    Also check continuity on the wires that came with the solenoid saver. I did the wires for him on the original run, and my crimper had some trouble around that timeframe.


    1 week later
    #18 8 months ago

    Sorry for the delay in responding. Just tested drop target coil. Resistance with game off is .001 which is same as other drop target coil.
    Voltage with game on is 80.2 volts which is same as other drop target coil.

    So....what should I be looking for now??
    Thanks for the advice!!

    #19 8 months ago

    Additional info: tested all fuses with meter and all working

    basically everything in game works just no reset of drop targets. they move easily and when game being played, it keeps sounding and flashing three arrows in front of targets and gives points for targets down and this repeats so it recognizes all three targets are down, just no reset.

    #20 8 months ago

    Actually, the solenoid saver board won't come into play here anyway, as that protects the special solenoids. Drop targets are standard solenoids.

    Time for back to basics here.

    You're saying they don't reset during solenoid test, and I'm assuming they don't reset at game start either? At game start, all 4 banks should reset one after another, a quick 4 clunks as the solenoids fire. Do the other three banks reset?

    Handy with a multimeter? Next step would be to check for voltage. Put it into solenoid test mode, and check for voltage on the coil tab where the red wires are on the coil. It's not regulated and can vary quite a lot, but anything over about 25v would indicate good power.

    If you have voltage, then next step would be to check the connector on the driver board. Easiest way to check overall coil wiring is to ground the transistor tab for that particular coil. Should fire it for you. If that works, then you're looking at board issues, and all your wiring is good.


    #21 8 months ago

    Let me see if I can answer your questions:

    Solenoid saver working and special solenoids are working...so not a player in my problem

    Game start: all targets reset except the lower right drop target. All solenoids fire when running solenoid test EXCEPT: lower right drop target

    I checked volatage by turning game on and putting red tip of multi-meter on coil terminal with red wire and black tip on ground cable in cabinet....got 80.2 volts. I then checked the coil on the lower left droptargets and got 80.2 volts as well. **I did not do this in solenoid test mode**

    I have not checked the "connector" on the board...not sure how to test this.....if you could give me some guidance! According to schematic: Solenoid Coil #3 is for lower right drop targets and it connects on J11, 3rd wire from top of connector colored Gray/Orange. You can see it in the above photos.

    I also need help with testing overall coil wiring......what is the transitor tab?? Where is this located?? How do you ground....just put meter on voltage and one tip on tab and other on ground wire?? Is the game on for this??

    Thanks for helping!

    #22 8 months ago

    Hopeful Bump!!

    #23 8 months ago

    Sounds like your voltage is good at the coil.

    I think he's suggesting that grounding the transistor will be an efficient way to test the connector, wiring, coil etc. To do it, you'll need a wire with an alligator clip on at least one end. Clip the alligator end onto the metal tab on the transistor that fires the coil. The other end of the wire can be *briefly* touched to ground to fire the coil. There's usually a metal ground strap running from the backbox to the cabinet--that is a suitable spot to touch the wire for ground. If the coil fires when you do that, you know the wiring and coil and connectors are good, but it doesn't rule out the transistor itself. I don't have any of my games opened at the moment, but here's where you'll need to hook up the clip:

    #24 8 months ago

    Great! Thnaks for the explanation. I will test this next!

    3 months later
    #25 4 months ago

    any update on this? I have lower left drops doing same thing..

    #26 4 months ago

    Does it reset in coil test? Have you tried grounding it's associated TIP transistor?

    #27 4 months ago

    OK...so here is an update.. I went through the wiring and the wire at the connector to the board was apparently not making good contact. After correcting this, the coil can be triggered by grounding at the coil and also at the TIP transistor. So, since this was corrected, no additional problems.
    I also just upgraded the flippers to the WPC type and they play much better. Used VID's flipper guide to order the complete flipper units and install. Very easy and has improved play!

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