(Topic ID: 246892)

Failing Step 0 in debug of an Eight Ball pinball machine, HELP!

By USB_John

1 year ago

Topic Stats

  • 10 posts
  • 4 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by Timerider
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider


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#1 1 year ago

I have just got an Eight Ball pinball machine and I can't get past "Step 0" which is 'Open the Back Box door'

The key turns about 1/8 of a turn and I heard a big CLUNK.
Looking through the vent holes in the back I can see a rotating lever and a stationary 1/4" square bar that it is hitting.
What is the trick to get the door open?

I have schematics and the Bally information to diagnose problems, but this assumes that you can open the front display panel door.
I am a professional electronics engineer (ex Intel) so know I should be able to do this

Best regards, John

#2 1 year ago

Turning the lock moves the rotating lever far enough that you can lift and remove the backglass.

#3 1 year ago

Wow, opened. Not how I was expecting it to open but THANK YOU, THANK YOU.

How do I delete this post to save the time/effort of other pinsiders?

Inside looks good, no obvious burning, which is GREAT.

Now to run the self-diagnostics and count LED flashes, then measure voltage etc

Warm regards, John

#4 1 year ago

What's the symptoms so far?
Note, the first blip of flashes doesn't count.
(Or does it? Now I'm doubting myself.)

#5 1 year ago

Glad I could help, John.

#6 1 year ago

John - to answer your question about deleting, not sure, but if you go to your first post, in the right hand corner, one of the icons should be labeled as solved. Hit that.

#7 1 year ago

Timerider, with some debugging I got all of the way to chimes and game play, except that the flippers aren't working yet. The initial problem was with the power regulation on +5V - I got it going with an independent +5V supply. I have ordered some large electrolytic capacitors since I wouldn't expect them to last since 1977. I was thinking of replacing ALL of the electrolytic caps on all boards - there are not many.

#8 1 year ago

So does the diagnostic LED blink? How many?
You got a manual? (Download from IPDB if not... both manual & then schematics too)


The flippers are both energized by the large relay in the backbox on the SDB. That relay is controlled by transistor Q15 on the SDB.
Does that relay click closed if you can do the solenoid diagnostics test via the test button on the inside coin door?

Have you removed the boards and reflowed the solder on all the connectors? This is key... solves many problems.
Also, there is a bulletproofing guide for both the power rectifier board & the solenoid drivers board, to improve grounds/reliability.

#9 1 year ago

I've got all 7 blinks and the game is enabled but it's not much fun without flippers!

I'm away from the game at the moment but have learnt how flippers work including the "disable flippers" relay.
I have the manual and schematics as well as a plan to debug the flippers.
But not a 'bulletproofing guide' - where would I find this?
Resoldering all the connectors sounds a good idea, I shall do this

Where would I find the specs of the power sources, ie how much current is needed from +5V and +42V?
It would be cheaper to use a modern switching supply for +5V rather than replicate the 1977 design (the old components are very expensive).
Is this considered "bad form" in a refurbishment?

#10 1 year ago

Here's the SDB upgrade link: http://www.pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=Bally/Stern#Solenoid_Driver_Upgrades

Normally, I buy the Bally solenoid rebuild kit from Ed @ Great Plaines Electronics, but he's out of stock. However, you can still use his values for reference ordering from Mouser or Newark (o whomever is your electronics go-to).

Ed also normally has all the connectors & headers to repair/bulletproof the boards.

And actually, it's a "flipper enable" relay, that is held closed by Q15 (also get from Ed @ GPE). Sometimes you can steal an unused transistor elsewhere on the board. There's a great matrix chart that shows which unused trans you could move: http://www.pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=Transistor_Mapping_for_Bally_Games

Beyond voltages found in the manuals (and on the various PinWiki pages... that's all you generally need on these Bally's.

Also, there are several aftermarket makers of brand new & improved Bally board sets. I don't recommend trying to retrofit a generic power supply to provide voltages.
And I've only replaced the Bally rectifier of this series, when the original was truly toasted.

If you're halfway decent with a soldering iron (and solder sucker/desolder gun/tool)... these are fairly easy boards to repair. IMO

And... if you've got any display issues: http://stevekulpa.net/pinball/bally_disp6r.htm

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