(Topic ID: 153689)

Electrical problem causing ejecting balls?

By n1teowl

4 years ago

Topic Stats

  • 12 posts
  • 4 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 years ago by Mbecker
  • No one calls this topic a favorite


Linked Games

#1 4 years ago

I've had a continuing problem with my World Cup Soccer. It occasionally and randomly ejects balls into the shooter lane during a game. It's very unpredictable. For example, I played 10 games tonight with no issues and then it started firing additional balls into the shooter lane and stacked up two or three. I've noticed it happens more often when the slingshots are both kicking back and forth or during multiball. I also noticed today that it might be related to the right flipper. The opto transmitter board has been replaced and the optos have tested out okay. No issues with any switches firing on the switch test when I bang on the playfield. Any ideas on what could be causing this? Ideas for what to try? I've considered replacing the 7 opto switch board - am I on the right track?

#2 4 years ago

Have you checked for a loose solder joint or a bare wire somewhere?

#3 4 years ago

Ditto what he said. See if you can replicate by starting a game and slapping the sides hard or shoving the cab around -- anything for a good jiggle. I think you might have a loose joint on the trough eject since you already tried reflowing trough optos

#4 4 years ago

I've taken a look and haven't found anything obvious - no loose solder joints that I can see. I can't seem to cause the machine to act up by shaking, smacking, or generally abusing it. I even checked all of the diodes on the switches in the same row and column as the ball jam opto. The ball jam opto is suspect as the solenoid will kind of "half-fire" a few times before kicking the balls out as if they were trying to unjam something. Unfortunately, the ball jam opto checks out.

#5 4 years ago

Hmm.. Perhaps not solder joint then. Does it happen ever when there's nothing else going on really i.e. Not many other mechanisms activated at the moment it happens? Is the ball jam opto part on the opto board you replaced I can't remember..? maybe next step to solder in a new receiver for that opto as well to eliminate a flaky in and out possibility of its starting to fail.

#6 4 years ago

It's very variable as to when it happens. It is usually brought on by a lot going on (e.g. multiball) but I've also had it happen even after all the balls have drained and nothing is really going on. I replaced the opto transmitter board, which contains the ball jam opto, but not the reciever board. It could be the receiving opto, but I read that the transmitters are more often the problem (and my soldering skills are pretty crappy). I've never gotten the ball jam opto to show any problem in test mode, which makes me a bit suspect, but who knows. I'm willing to try anything at this point. Any thoughts on the 7 opto switch board that the two opto boards plug into?

#7 4 years ago

Ball trough opto boards are usually the culprit. Remove both and reflow the solder, not only to the optos, but to the connectors as well on both boards. A cracked solder joint will make intermittent connections from vibration from coils firing. Optos are different from a normal switch, in that if you lose a connection, the CPU thinks that there is a ball there and will try to clear it. This typically results in balls getting kicked to the shooter lane.

#8 4 years ago

Given the total randomness, I'd start electrically at the opto and work back to the boards in the back box -- so yes, that opto switch board would be next in line I think? If it happened only when multiple selenoids were firing I'd consider the possibility of low voltage causing the opto to trip but that doesn't sound like the case. Trace the line out and reflow everything back to the boards, check that connections not loose anywhere, check for nicked insulator that could be causing a short

#9 4 years ago

Thanks for the replies schudel5 and Mbecker. I will start at the optos and work my way back. Although I've tested them using the switch test and blocking the beam, it would be pretty unlikely for me to identify the issue that way because it happens so infrequently. I'll go over all of the connections carefully and see if I can see anything janky. I meant to say that I have already tried reflowing the opto switch board and the problem hasn't gotten any worse or any better (not sure how good I job I did though). Thanks again and I'll let you know what I discover.

#10 4 years ago

I had the same issue on my DH. Sometimes just sitting in attract mode I'd hear the balls kick into the shooter lane and then out into the playfield from the auto-launcher. Occasionally during a game one would shoot out for a mini-multiball.

I ended up putting the game into switch edge test. The switch matrix in the manual should show the squares lightly grayed out to represent the switches that are optos. With the balls removed, the matrix on the DMD should look like the matrix in the manual. I raised and lowered the playfield several times into the receiver. Even pounded on the playfield in-between. Then eventually I heard the tone and saw the square on the DMD go out and come back on. It was the jam opto. It did take a while of fiddling around to get it to show up. If the game has an opto control board under the playfield, reseat all the connectors on there just to rule out a flaky connector.

#11 4 years ago

I had a chance to work on this tonight. I did what you suggested schudel5 and got the switch edge test going and really gave it a going over. Of course, nothing seemed wrong as the other times I tried this. I stuck with it though and started firing off the slings (as this sometimes seemed to cause the problem). I would see the slings listed on the switch edge test, back and forth, and spent a good couple of minutes doing this. And then...one time...the ball jam opto fired. I pressed on the opto board, the ball jam opto, and banged on the playfield and couldn't get it to fire again. And then, as I was pressing on the contacts for the ball jam opto with a pencil, it fired again. Those were the only two timies I could get it to fire, but that was enough for me. I took the opto receiver board out and reflowed the contacts to the ball jam opto. It's back in now, and I'm cautiously optimistic after playing three games with no issues at all. No more "mini-multiball"! Mbecker, you helped me realize that I was probably overthinking things and I should start at the beginning and the most obvious place. It's amazing how you get an idea in your head of what the problem is and stop thinking about other options. I'm hoping this fix sticks, I'll let you know how it turns out. Thanks again for your help, an objective look was what I needed.

#12 4 years ago

Sweet! Always good feeling to find the problem and hopefully have fixed it! I have an ongoing opto issue in my shadow that I have not solved yet.. not even intermittant but when you try everything you can think of and still don't solve it, sure can be frustrating!

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