(Topic ID: 264756)

Firepower II Repair and Shop


By Shredso

11 months ago



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  • 52 posts
  • 6 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 9 months ago by Shredso
  • Topic is favorited by 6 Pinsiders

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There are 52 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
#1 11 months ago

In light of the current situation I decided to shift my repair queue around and concentrate on fixing and selling games I know I don't want to keep. There are probably 3 in this category, so unfortunately, BOP 2.0 and Judge Dredd will take a back seat for a bit. First in line is Firepower II. I bought this because (I thought) it was a deal. I liked Firepower and thought I could make a few bucks and hopefully enjoy it. I responded to the ad and was told I was first in line, and that he had a ton of interest. I told him I could be right there, and we set a time. The playfield was far worse than I thought from the pics. I probably should have left it for the next guy as it wasn't a title I cared about. I knew I couldn't talk him down because he had people waiting in line and I didn't want to waste the trip, so I bought it. I should have taken a few pics at this point, but I have lots moving forward.

#2 11 months ago

Game setup- Legs:

The legs were a rusty mess. I could have made these perfect, or at least much better with an Evaporust bath and some buffing, but this is Firepower II. My goal here is to get it clean, reliable, and playing well. Cosmetics will take a back seat due to the condition of the playfield. Windex and a scotch bright pad removed most of the rust and they looks much better. One is still a rusty mess, I may replace it if I have a matching one. I don't have a great before pic, half way through cleaning these I decided to document the shop job. Here is a half way done, and as good as it's going to get picture.

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#3 11 months ago

The first 2 leg bolts were a breeze, then it was a fight. I decided to re-tap every bracket. I didn't want to ruin the brand new bolts, and there is a good chance a non-pinhead or first time pin buyer will end up with this. I want to try and catch all of the little details so I'm not making free trips.

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#4 11 months ago

Legs are on! After a quick wipedown I noticed the cabinet is in decent shape. The game flipped but had no sound when I bought it. I didn't play it for more than a minute or so to make sure it was complete. First power on, attract mode, credits on the game, start button doesn't work.

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#5 11 months ago

A quick peek in the cabinet and I see a connector I missed. Plugged it in and the game flips! Most of the features seem to be working. Some switches are inconsistent or not working. Hopefully small adjustments. I also plugged in the speaker, there are 2 spots on the sound board that it fit in, it's not keyed. Quick search in the manual and I was good. There is something else I should have noticed at this point. More on that later.

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#6 11 months ago

The boards were serviced at some point, and it appears to be a professional job. This was the reason I didn't bail on the game. I was anticipating dealing with some battery damage and the interconnect mess. Huge plus (I think).

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#7 11 months ago

Time to deal with the sound. Or more specifically, the lack of sound. I'm not very familiar with anything earlier than System 11, so I'm poking around blindly. I'm not getting voltage anywhere. I check the fuses, one was blown. Could it be?! One fuse was blown, and one was way overfused. I swapped in a 4A SB for the overfused good fuse, and my circuit breaker for the blown one. Neither blew on power up, but still no sound.

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#8 11 months ago

I was getting some odd readings on the bridge rectifier. Unfortunately it's a different package, 4 in line. All mine are square. I know I have one of these somewhere from an Ice Cold Beer I repaired, no idea if it's the correct specs, can't find it anyway. There is no harm in putting in a beefier bridge, right? I decided to try a Coronapocolypse/operator repair just to get the thing going. I'm not sure who is shipping parts now,and I don't want this to take a month. I bent the legs on a square bridge rectifier and put some heat shrink tubing on the legs because it was a little too exposed for my liking. It's definitely a hack, and I will either replace or disclose it when I sell. Reinstall the board, nothing blows, still no sound. I'm thinking maybe the capacitors need to be replaced. I hit the test button on the sound board and hear a very faint sound. Does anyone know what I previously missed? Post #5, I wasn't sure where to plug the speaker in. I looked in the manual and figured out the location on the sound board. This should have triggered me to question why the other one wasn't populated. I plugged in the volume control and it worked! This game sounds awful.... I have some pics of the hack repair so you guys can laugh and call me a hack.

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#9 11 months ago

The sound works, the game works, the only issue now is a bad display. I confirmed it's not the controller. Its the player 4 glass, no big deal for now. Moving on to the shop job. This is the point I probably should have dumped the game. It was purchased with the intent of making a profit. Anything I do from here on in is probably free labor and parts. Oh well. Here is a pic of the trashed playfield. My intention here was to tear down just enough to replace the rubber and clean as much as I can without destroying paint.

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#10 11 months ago

I ended up tearing down most of the topside. There are a lot of posts on this game! I was hoping the teardown would be simpler for such a simple game. I will probably end up rebuilding the pops and the slings, and likely dropping all of the switches and polishing them. Fortunately even with an aggressive cleaning I didn't lose any more paint. Here it is after a coat of wax. I'm pretty happy with how it cleaned up. That's it for today, it was a productive day.

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#11 11 months ago

These parts are pretty gnarly. Going for a bath in the ultrasonic. I considered breaking out the tumbler for the first time in years, we'll see how they come out.

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#12 11 months ago

They cleaned up nicely, I may hit a few with the buffer.

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#13 11 months ago

All organized! I started buffing a few parts without great results. The plating seems different on these older games.
Buffer- 1
Post - 0
My workshop claimed a post and I need to stop buffing. No idea where it went, luckily I had an extra so it won't slow me down.

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#14 11 months ago
Quoted from Shredso:

The first 2 leg bolts were a breeze, then it was a fight. I decided to re-tap every bracket. I didn't want to ruin the brand new bolts, and there is a good chance a non-pinhead or first time pin buyer will end up with this. I want to try and catch all of the little details so I'm not making free trips.[quoted image]

I do this to every game brought home including NIB . Makes it so much smoother.

#15 11 months ago
Quoted from chad:

I do this to every game brought home including NIB . Makes it so much smoother.

It used to be part of the every game routine for me. I haven't found it necessary with the newer games, but definitely a good practice.

#16 11 months ago

After some socket cleaning and all new lamps, all of the GI is working.

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#17 11 months ago

I'm out of order here, but I was exhausted and wanted to get something done. Some of these parts will come back off, but sometimes I need a little inspiration of a slightly populated playfield to keep me moving. This isn't making a great shop out series because the game really isn't in that bad of shape (other than the playfield wear). I was kind of expecting a basketcase. There was some weird corrosion on the metal, but overall it's not nearly as bad as other games of this age I've encountered. I was expecting some interesting detours, but this is turning out to be a fairly standard shop job. Not a bad thing...

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#18 11 months ago

Due to the overwhelmingly positive response, I've decided to continue this thread. I've again told myself, even if it's going to cost you some time to remove things, do something today. I probably won't touch it tomorrow, but I'm hoping for a full day on Friday. I'm still working, but I think I need a day off with the family. Maybe I can rope the kids into helping. I'd like to see it playable again by Friday night. The beauty of the simpler games is, if I decide I want to completely rebuild the pops (I probably will), it's not like I need to take off 6 ramps and an upper playfield.

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#19 11 months ago

The more I look at this part, I think it's homemade. I'm not seeing it on other pictures of the game. I'm guessing it's a defector for stuck balls. If it's homemade, it's well done. It looked better before I ran it through the ultrasonic. I should throw a coat of paint on it if I decide to keep it. Has anyone seen this? Is this a common location for stuck balls?

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#20 11 months ago
Quoted from Shredso:

The more I look at this part, I think it's homemade. I'm not seeing it on other pictures of the game. I'm guessing it's a defector for stuck balls. If it's homemade, it's well done. It looked better before I ran it through the ultrasonic. I should throw a coat of paint on it if I decide to keep it. Has anyone seen this? Is this a common location for stuck balls?[quoted image]

everything in that pic is standard and on mine!

great thread

#21 11 months ago

Thanks for all the detailed posts! Exactly the kind of thing I need to stay sane right now. NBA is MIA, and there’s only so much Netflix you can watch. I used to have a Firepower II, gave it a full topside teardown eons ago. This takes me back.

#22 11 months ago

I was able to spend about an hour this morning before house and yard work. First issue to tackle was this post mess. I suspected the machine screw was broken off inside the tee-nut, and it was. Pooped the tee-nut through the bottom of the playfield, installed a new one and a new machines screw. Luckily had everything on hand. Easy fix!

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#23 11 months ago

This was a bummer, remember the metal post I lost to the buffer a few posts back? I thought I had another. Unfortunately I have one with a wood thread, and one with an 8/32 thread. I need the 6/32. I haven't decided how to deal with it yet. I could find a random placeholder to make the game playable until I can order the part, or drill it out to 8/32. I really don't see any harm in doing this, especially with the condition of the rest of the playfield. I believe the post is identical on the topside.

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#24 11 months ago

I had a metal post that was pretty beat, so I didn't mind destroying it with an experiment. Could I turn a beefy wood thread into a machine thread? It's definitely a little short.

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#25 11 months ago

The answer is, sorta. It's too short to use the washer, but it catches a couple threads without it and seems solid. It's certainly good enough to hold until the next parts order. That rubber should probably be a 3/4", but I didn't want to push it.
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#26 11 months ago

I decided to try and paint the stuck ball deflector. I found some black spray paint, but it wasn't spraying properly. I tried soaking the tip in some thinner. The can is junk and I ended up with a horrible result, and paint all over my hands. The can would spray a thin mist, then spit some paint, then get clogged.
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#27 11 months ago

I'm sticking with my apocalypse method. I really don't want to go to the store unless I absolutely need to. Must make it work with parts on hand... I decided to strip the paint and try buffing it. I could have made it a little better with some more sanding steps, but this is good enough. Not sure if I will leave it or buy paint next time I go out. Pictures are before and after buffing.

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#28 11 months ago

Out of 2 1/2" rubber! Luckily the game came with a box of random stuff, and there was a 2 1/2" in there. I've been using Titan on all my games lately so I stopped restocking the traditional rubber.

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#29 11 months ago

Slings were super warped. Not perfect, but I was able to get it to settle down.

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#30 11 months ago

Almost there! I need to decide how far I'm going with the flippers, pops, and other mechs on the bottom. I also have the display to deal with and one target that needs repair.

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#31 11 months ago

Thanks for posting pics and explaining what you are doing.

I've got flipper rebuilds and pop bumper rebuilds too, when I can put in an order.

4 weeks later
#32 10 months ago

I figured I should finish this, took a little break. I was so close to the end, not sure why I bailed on it for almost a month.

Pop bumpers were dirty, but surprisingly, nothing broken. One coil sleeve was a little tougher to get out than I like. The coil probably should be replaced, I'll see how it goes. Dirty before, and after all cleaned up and organized,

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#33 10 months ago

Flippers! This is where I really started losing interest in the project (a few weeks ago). I didn't have the proper rebuild stock. I made it work, but will either need to fix it or disclose that it's a little bit of a hack rebuild. Both coils required drilling to get the sleeve out, and a new one in. Obviously these coils should be replaced. I used a WPC rebuild kit, but had to reuse the conical spring because there was no place for the return spring to attach. I also realized I had the flat bushing, and should have the tapered one like System 11. We'll have to see if the spring gets bunched up. Surprisingly after all of those hacks, the flippers feel fine. The left flipper keeps coming misaligned. I remember getting a bad batch of kits from Pinball Life years ago. The bolt would shear before you got it tight enough to secure the flipper. I suspect that will happen here, I believe I have another if it does. Would you leave it?

#34 10 months ago

Doing some final adjustments. I replaced 100% of the topside lamps, but only the ones that were out on the bottom. A few switches needed adjustment. Nothing big. Ideally I would clean up all the inserts and replace those as well, but I'm kinda done with this game. The little bit of play testing I've done, I'm not crazy about the game. One target wasn't working. I noticed it was missing the brace. Luckily I have some old targets. I was able to drill out the brace from an old target and reattach to the broken target with nuts and bolts. The solder connection broke while I was messing with it, quick fix and the target is working!

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#35 10 months ago

I just set the game to free play, I was worried I was going to have to burn a special ROM. That always turns into a project for me on these older games.

The only things left to do (until I uncover more things to do)

1. Fine tune pop bumpers
2. Figure out what the diverter is supposed to do and see if it's working
3. Find a replacement display.
4. New score cards.

#36 10 months ago

2. The diverter isn't a diverter. At least not a solenoid powered one. I should have known this with all the time I've spent on this playfield. Interesting design really, combining a plunger diverter and a switch in the other direction. Did any other games use this?

4. Found some decent cards!

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#37 10 months ago

I'm putting off #1 and #3 because they are a pain. Instead I'm adding #5. Speech? I saw that this was a potential mod and thought it was really cool. Probably not cool enough to dump more money in that I likely won't get back on a game I have no intention of keeping. Upon further investigation- I already have the board! Exciting. Does it work? Is it loaded with the correct ROMS?

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#39 10 months ago

Could the speech mod be as easy as cutting a jumper and flipping a switch? Unfortunately no. I'll have to see how difficult it is to test this board.

#40 10 months ago

I looked up the ROMS to see if the correct ones were in there. The numbers matched, but my bottom left ROM socket isn't populated. The other pictures I see have the upper left empty. I swapped the chips....FIREPOWER! It works, or at least that much. Gotta get back to the real job. It's tough having to work from home 5 feet away from a project. I'll have to test it later, but the fact that is says Firepower when I add a credit is great.

#41 10 months ago

I got all the pop bumpers dialed in, so much better. There is still a clatter in the left sling, and it also wasn't scoring. I foolishly tried adjusting it while the game was powered on, and I think I cooked something. So close!!! Time for some research....

#42 10 months ago

I wish I knew a bit more about board repair. I can typically fumble my way through it by using repair guides and the forums, but I wish I didn't have to rely on those so much. The manual is clear on what chips control the switch matrix. Worst case I can replace all of them. I started poking around with the logic probe and got nothing. I suspected I cooked it a long time ago. Amazon quickly got me a replacement and my old one was in fact bad.

While I was waiting for that to ship I thought it would be a good time to learn something about the pocket oscilloscope I bought a million years ago. I fumbled around with that for awhile, watched some videos. All I really got out of it is the pin that controls the column in question looks different than a working column. The new logic probe showed it was stuck high while a working pin pulsed.

#43 10 months ago

I got the board on the bench. I planned on leaving the 2 boards together, but of course the chip in question is on the top. These things are a nightmare to separate. I was able to remove the 7406 without damaging it. After 4 tries I remembered how to orient the chip in my little tester and it failed. I happened to have a new one on hand, soldered it in and I'm back up and running. I still need to adjust that switch though. Next time with the power off....

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#44 10 months ago

The display graveyard...Hopefully there is something usable in here.

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#45 10 months ago

Holy crap this was difficult to separate. There must be a better way.

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#46 10 months ago

I was really hoping a couple of the glass displays on the Data East board would be good. 2 of them were already hacked up. 3 pins fell out of one after I cut it off the board. The last one I pulled off looked to be in great shape, but had too many pins. This is a shame because these displays were for another project.

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#47 10 months ago

I decided to test the board with the missing pins to see if it worked at all. It does work, but there are segments out. I prefer a partially working display over a totally dead one. At least we can tell if someone accidentally starts a 4 player game. This caused some confusion the other night when I was playing with the kids. Not the outcome I was hoping for, but not a total loss.

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1 week later
#48 9 months ago

LOve your thread

#49 9 months ago
Quoted from Shredso:

Holy crap this was difficult to separate. There must be a better way.
[quoted image]

Yes there is a good way. A long sharp knife works well but be careful!

Quoted from Shredso:

I prefer a partially working display over a totally dead one.

Cool, at lest you know the glass is good. If no pins are at fault, you should be able to repair that.

#50 9 months ago
Quoted from snyper2099:

Yes there is a good way. A long sharp knife works well but be careful!

Cool, at lest you know the glass is good. If no pins are at fault, you should be able to repair that.

The pin is broken off inside the glass. I tried shoving a pin up there, and maybe soldering it in place, but couldn't get it to stay.

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