Quoted from trueno92:
This is how I also understand the circuit. The cap just acts as a reserve to hold a charge once a contact is made. Its now gotten me curious on how much room we have to play with cap values. The old caps are probably lacking and the values may have been dialed back for commercial use... so lets see how I can improve this!!! Is there a downside to using too large of a cap? I guess it would take too long to charge between quick repeating ball-strikes?
I'm going to double up the pop bumper tonight and report back, the slings kick a lot more consistently now, even on light bounces which is where i want it to be.
I'm used to seeing a debouce circuit being used to send a single pulse to a circuit when normally you'd see a bunch of flutter as the contacts almost close. The higher the capacity of the cap, the longer the switch appears to stay closed and multiple closures within that period are read as a single event.
From that logic, if you used too big a cap multiple hits in quick succession might be missed or the mechanics of the mechanism being in the way of the switch being closed (eg the bumper ring staying down too long). Way too big a cap would result in the coil staying energised too long and blowing a fuse, transistor, coil, etc, just like the switch being held closed.
The cap only needs to be big enough to give the coil enough time to complete its action and 22uf seems to have worked for years. I'd be hesitant to fiddle with them too much and would look at mechanical issues first (coil sleeves, gummed up pivot points, etc) first.
If you had a solenoid saver (http://nvram.weebly.com/repair--conversion-kits.html) in place or another method of individually fused specials it'd be less scary to fiddle with the values.