EM : Show us your EM Pinball Machines!

(Topic ID: 52867)

EM : Show us your EM Pinball Machines!

By Rat_Tomago

5 years ago

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  • 11,404 posts
  • 629 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 46 minutes ago by VectorGamer
  • Topic is favorited by 170 Pinsiders


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#10240 1 year ago
Quoted from electricsquirrel:

Sorry, couldn't resist.
Wouldn't mind seeing some pix of the Vespas!

Dude - you gotta at least come up with a funny explanation of why this qualifies as electromechanical. Nice ride.

1 week later
#10293 1 year ago
Quoted from ZNET:

I think that LEDs can enhance some EM titles. However, on Strange World, I note that so much of the great Morison art is lost with the LEDs, as shown in your photos. Compare those photos to these, which show the game utilizing #47 incandescent bulbs. So much more wonderful art is revealed on the backglass and playfield with incandescent bulbs.
While I agree that LEDs run cooler, #47 bulbs emit less heat than #44 bulbs and are unlikely to cause damage under typical conditions. If the game is in a temperature-controlled environment, #47 incandescents will not contribute to backglass or playfield plastic degradation.
Also, the warmer incandescent light is at home in a machine made in 1978 whereas the strident LED illumination seems at odds with the game's sensibility. Strange World was designed to look seventies strange as opposed to head-scratching strange. Alternatively, my age (nearly 59) is making me cranky about the discord these LEDs cause to my memories of having played these EMs in my youth. In any event, you've got yourself a line-up keeper in Strange World, for sure. Enjoy!

While I totally agree with you aesthetically, I would be curious to see an illuminated backglass photo from yoski taken in daylight or at least with lights on in the room. Your photo looks like it was taken with flash. A camera flash is going to wash out the actual head lighting and show more printed surface detail. Due to the spotty locations of em head lamp sockets you're not going to see much illuminated art detail on the glass in a darkened room with incandescent lamps either. I mostly prefer incandescent lighting for everything, but I do sometimes use leds to accentuate a color or provide extra illumination under some of the playfield inserts or behind the backglass - never for gi. nicovolta does something similar. He calls it the "stealth led" treatment.

#10380 1 year ago

I picked up a San Francisco and a Moulin Rouge a little over a year ago as learning objects. Neither worked.
They were cosmetically and mechanically in bad shape. I used them to practice playfield and cabinet restoration figuring that I couldn't make them any worse. Both got extensive playfield paint work and clear coats. The cabinets got stripped and repainted inside and out. Nearly every switch got cleaned, polished and adjusted. I remade all of the plastics for Moulin Rouge. Now that they are pretty much done I have happily discovered that I really enjoy playing them, too! (I wasn't sure that would be the case since I had never played a good dialed in example of either one.) Next up in the project queue - Old Chicago and Space Mission.

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#10385 1 year ago
Quoted from Grayman_EM:

Fantastic work! Should have a before and after pictures to see just how much you did. Did you go by Vid's instruction thread on the redo?

Thanks! Not sure I have much except the section by section scans I used for creating stencils. I really wasn't in a documentation frame of mind with these and took practically zero pictures along the way. For SF, I repainted all of the blue, white and yellow as well as some red and text. For MR I repainted all of the blue, yellow and white along with the purple on the guy and the peach toned lighthouse beams.

Yes, I followed the advice of vid1900 via his playfield restoration thread. Well, pretty much...I deviated a few times in the early stages, quickly regretted it and learned not to question the master.

As nicovolta says, condition affects fun A LOT. That has been one of my big takeaways from these projects. The difference between how these play compared to examples in need of mechanical care and/or a smooth, low friction playing surface are worlds apart. I had played both before and did not care for them at all. Now, they are among my favorites (and not because of the countless hours spent working on them). My mechanical and restoration skills have a ways to go before I would consider myself competent, but I am determined to keep learning as it is both interesting and rewarding.

My approach going forward, now that I have some basic abilities, may be to clean a game and tune it up mechanically as soon as I get it. If it shows promise as a keeper, I would probably do a full topside teardown, deep cleaning and 2PAC clearcoat to halt further deterioration and allow for true play. I don't buff the clear for my EMs. It's smooth enough and probably close in gloss and color saturation to what these looked and played like when new with their fresh acrylic lacquer sealant. If it has held my interest after a year of playing, then I might get into a detailed paint restoration.

#10389 1 year ago
Quoted from jrpinball:

Truly outstanding work. Bravo! "Moulin Rouge" is an excellent player. I see you even made the very rare center "plastic". The actual one is metal, but it was only on sample games and maybe some of the early production ones. I had an image of the graphic design on it, but I can't seem to find it at the moment.

Thanks - and yes, I copied the shape from this image on IPDB. I tried one out of metal and did not like it as much. It blocks too much view imho. It does seem to have a function, however (less airballs from hard shots skipping over the saucers) so I made one with clear acrylic. Now that there is a really nice maker lab at my local library, I might cut one on the laser cutter and have the machine etch the original pattern into it. Not sure how to handle the two color overlap as an etch, though.

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2 weeks later
#10460 11 months ago
Quoted from MikeO:

I don’t understand how these games got so dirty. Clearly they got played a lot but I still don’t quite understand how so much dirt got behind everything.

Years of coil dust?

2 weeks later
#10567 11 months ago
Quoted from EM-PINMAN:

Nice game and congrats.
Next time please don't use a water product like simple green to clean a playfield. Water and Wood don't mix unless it is a tree, and a live one at that. Use 91% or better rubbing alcohol as it evaporates quickly and will not plank the playfield from soaking in like water.

I agree about avoiding water based cleaners. The water can promote planking. I would also avoid alcohol unless you are keen to remove your lacquer. Naptha will dissolve wax and grime but not harm your paint or clear/lacquer.

Stunning find. Congratulations.

#10577 11 months ago

I am old enough to have played EMs new. They were shiny. They were also harder and faster than any unrestored original "survivors" you might luck into today. You could reclear with acrylic lacquer to be "authentic" but the reality is that the manufacturers just used the most effective and economical clear that was available at the time. No matter how you slice it, acrylic lacquer (the automotive clearcoat of that era) sucks. It is dimensionally unstable, yellows slowly but steadily and gradually deteriorates until it's basically not there anymore. That leaves you with a minimally protected playfield lacking its original color saturation. Do your games a favor and have the playfields professionally clearcoated. If you insist on maintaining the dulled patina of the 40+year old deteriorated surface (which is not the original look) dull it ever so slightly with 1500 grit. But honestly, clearing a playfield is like painting a house that hadn't been painted in 50 years. You'll be surprised how good it looks (and plays) - much like it did was when it was first built.

#10590 11 months ago
Quoted from pinwiztom:

my 2 cents
Cupped inserts are just part of the game
man vs machine
just a bit of a handicap
Now if the insert is missing
that is too much of a handicap

1 week later
#10670 10 months ago
Quoted from electricsquirrel:

I always hear the Steve \ Soup Nazi comparisons.
I don't understand. Every time I've dealt with him, he was always really cool.

Me too. Always really nice and helpful.

1 month later
#10804 9 months ago
Quoted from pinwiztom:

Not my game, but posting photos anyway as it is a game
that I have never seen in person before.
Part of the PPM collection thanks to Larry Z.
It will be at the Golden State Pinfest (Pin-A-Lodi) in 2 weeks.
Looking forward to playing it,
though it probably will not be much better
gameplay wise than its descendent
WMS Darling/Jubilee

One of those just sold locally on flea bay for only $227.

#10806 9 months ago
Quoted from pinwiztom:

Probably the one that had the PF stripped
but then never put back together before selling?
10 yrs ago i would have been all over it.

Yup - that's the one.

#10835 9 months ago

I made some for my San Francisco. I recommend ordering white ones from PBR and dyeing them yourself. I used synthetic fabric dye (for dyeing polyester fabric) from the fabric store.

#10838 9 months ago
Quoted from Mikala:

Can you show us a picture of your results?

Next time I might give it less time in the dye or mix the dye weaker for more color control, but I'm pleased with the result.

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#10841 9 months ago
Quoted from singlezero:

that does look good and a great solution. i suppose id do both the 6 hole and 4 hole to match . id be a bit concerned how it would wear though , with continual ball play. would the edge turn to white after several games?

No, the dye soaks in.

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