(Topic ID: 128521)

First Pin Four Million BC

By orangestorm87

9 years ago


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  • 37 posts
  • 16 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 8 years ago by egyptrus
  • Topic is favorited by 3 Pinsiders

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#1 9 years ago

I just bought my first pin and I am really excited to get it all cleaned up and working 100%. I have been reading a lot of the restore forums and seems like there is conflicting answers on how to clean a playfield.

I bought my machine from the grandson of the original owner and it unfortunately looks like they never once cleaned it. So there is a bunch of dirt and grime all over the playfield as well as a few large and a few more minor wear spots going to the base wood. Reading I have basically seen two schools of thought. One, use Novus 2 and a microfiber towel to clean the playfield or Two, use a Magic Eraser and alcohol.

Which one would work best for me? I think if I press or rub to hard more paint could easily come off.
What pinball site is the best to get spare parts from? I found https://www.marcospecialties.com/ but curious if there are any others?

For more machine specific questions there appears to only be two issues right now in its operation.
1) There is a loud buzzing coming from the Coin Mech when the machine is on. If I press down on it (see picture) or hold in the left flipper the buzzing stops.
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2) When playing with multiple players, when its goes from a lower number player to a higher numbered player everything works great. (Such as 2nd player ends turn and it goes to 3rd player). But when a higher numbered player goes to a lower numbered player (4th player to 1st player) the machine may not actually switch, may only get back to 2nd player not 1st, or it takes some time (30seconds or more) to do so. I am guessing it has something to do with the player up unit in the backbox.

Finally, two minor questions.
1) It has a bit of a musty smell, any recommondations on how to remove/reduce it?
2) The scoring chime/bell is really loud, any way to quiet it down but not silence it?

#2 9 years ago

Awesome First Game

#3 9 years ago

Thanks, like I said I can't wait to get it as close to 100% as possible.

#4 9 years ago

Here is a good place to start. http://homepinballrepair.com
I also like "pinball life" for parts. Tons of stuff online for parts and repair- just takes time to do the research. Use the forum search here on pinside is also a great resorce.

#5 9 years ago

I would avoid using Magic Eraser unless you are VERY careful. It is HIGHLY abrasive and WILL remove paint! Use Novus 2 as it is much gentler. ME might be OK on clearcoat but would never use it on a painted playfield.

As for the buzzing coil, this is pretty common for always-on coils. You can bend the plate bracket a bit, tweak the spring, or put 1 layer of duct tape over the pivoting plate. Any of these can eliminate the buzz when the relay is on.

#6 9 years ago

Also, to quiet the chime, use duct tape wrapped on the end of the chime or on the surface, dampen to the degree you want. As for the player s changing, I would disassemble the player select unit, clean everything (solvent is best like carb cleaner), make sure all springs and contacts are good, everything turns smoothly, and reassemble. Use a regular pencil eraser to clean contact rivets.

#7 9 years ago

For the coin door coil. I have disconnected them if they make noise or are burned up on my machines that I have on free play.
My Bally Kick-Off had close to the same player number change problem(Very slow to change, if it would at all, without me manually moving the stepper(player up unit) in the back box). I had to take the stepper apart and clean the old grease and crud out, then lube with Teflon lube, and re assemble. There are very helpful guides on pinrepair website for this.
I order parts from Pinball life and Pinball resource. There are lots of other suppliers, everyone has there own preferences.
Hope this helps a little.
Also, congrats on the new game!

#8 9 years ago

If you use Magic Eraser & 91%+ Alcohol as a wiping sponge rather than an eraser, you will clean the surface dirt.

The trick to Magic Eraser/Alcohol is to use a two wipe system. The first wipe is the ME/A. The second wipe is a dry microfiber towel. This method also limits the need for Naptha after you clean.

If you focus in small 2 inch x 2 inch sections, and take your time, you will get amazing results. Just like any tool, you need to constantly check your sponge to see if paint is starting to come off.

As long as you are not scrubbing, your risk of pulling up paint is minimal.

Good luck and congrats on a terrific first game!

Marcus

#9 9 years ago

Too much alcohol can reactivate the laquer and make it sticky. I use magic eraser and alcohol to spot clean being very careful. Then I go over the playfield with one coat of novus 2. Millwax is next as that will clean the playfield very well and make it shine. Two coats of a good carnuba wax like Blitz and it is done.

#10 9 years ago

So far using Novus 2 and microfiber towels seem to be doing the trick. Slow and steady wins the race at this point. Thanks for all the tips so far.

#11 9 years ago

Congrats on the great game pickup! I love mine.

Usually order from Pinball Resource (www.pbresource.com) for early EM parts as they generally have the best availability. Just email the part numbers to them and they'll get back to you quickly. Marco is also really good.

Just disconnect that lockout coil on the front of the game and cap the wire so it doesn't short to anything. If it's staying at home, that'll work just fine. For general EM repair I'd highly recommend Clay's guide at http://www.pinrepair.com/em/index.htm

Have fun!

#12 9 years ago

A couple of preventing future headaches questions.

1) Looking at items on pinball reasource I saw a comment about being careful with wax that gets trapped in deep wear spots. Should I be concerned about this, I thought waxing was helping protect your playfield? How do you remove wax from your playfield in the future?

2) At Marco I see adhesive Mylar Pop Bumper protectors and at PR I see non-adhesive. I assume the non-adhesive is preferred for an older playfield and ease or removal in the future?

#13 9 years ago
Quoted from orangestorm87:

2) At Marco I see adhesive Mylar Pop Bumper protectors and at PR I see non-adhesive. I assume the non-adhesive is preferred for an older playfield and ease or removal in the future?

Adhesive protectors are much better and more forgiving than non-adhesive. Non-adhesive get dust under them, then scratch up the PF even more over time.

#14 9 years ago

Non adhesive is what came on Gottlieb games starting after the mid-60's into the 80's.

Everyone else used adhesive style once they started using them.

Most of my games are Gottlieb EM and I'm a stickler for originality and only use the non-adhesive style. They survived 30,000 to 80,000 plays before I got them without tearing up the paint with the non adhesive style - most probably because the operators maintained them well.

I know the operator that maintains my games and think he'll do a decent job of maintaining them such that the non adhesive style will be adequate.

#15 9 years ago

Back in 1979 this was my first game. Foolish 15 yr old that I was sold it a year later for a stereo...And to add insult to injury, the couple that bought the game put wood grain contact paper all over the cabinet because they didn't like the artwork. Kills me to think about my poor game.

Congrats on your pinball machine.

#16 9 years ago

Time for my dumb questions for the day. Many have to do with removing items from the machine for easier cleaning.

1) Can you remove the top porition of a pop bumper without de-soldering it from the underside of the playingfield? I assume when my mylar protectors come I will have to remove the pop bumper to install them.

2) How do you remove the mushroom bumpers? Also I see they have rubber rings around their bases, do I just stretch them and pull them over the top to replace them? Or do I have to someone remove them fully from the playfield?

3) Does the shooter rod need to be greased/oiled? I took mine out since it was dirty, but now curious if I may have removed some long ago grease to help smooth the pull action.

4) I keep reading that there usually is an easy way to remove the score reels from the back box for cleaning. I see a screw and pin on the outtermost score wheel(ones place), and even if I get that one I don't know how I would remove the 10's 100's etc place.

Now time to get back to making more dirty rags.

#17 9 years ago

Pop bumpers need to be completely removed.
lite sockets should also be replaced. cut them out. cut the actual socket leg, not the wires.
Remove pop assy. replace whatever needs it, reassemble.
treat play field however you will. install mylar, reinstall pop,resolder lite legs.
If the shooter is sluggish, remove, clean, and try some sylicone on a reg, and rub on shooter rod,reinstall. Don't put grease on the shooter, grease travels.
Score reels usually have a spring clip, or a wing nut, or a hairpin holdin them in. Look at the bottom of the bracket, and you shud see how they are held. all are the same.

on a side note... remove everything you can from play field to clean/wax. most will come off.
some standup switches will not easly be removed, so cut a straw, and put over the switches"to protect your hands, not the switches". then use paper towels to stuff in the holes. cleaner and wax is a bummer to remove from holes.
Getcha a dremmel tool, and a BRASS wire wheel to clean contacts. much faster, and no damage.

#18 9 years ago
Quoted from orangestorm87:

Time for my dumb questions for the day. Many have to do with removing items from the machine for easier cleaning.
1) Can you remove the top porition of a pop bumper without de-soldering it from the underside of the playingfield? I assume when my mylar protectors come I will have to remove the pop bumper to install them.
2) How do you remove the mushroom bumpers? Also I see they have rubber rings around their bases, do I just stretch them and pull them over the top to replace them? Or do I have to someone remove them fully from the playfield?
3) Does the shooter rod need to be greased/oiled? I took mine out since it was dirty, but now curious if I may have removed some long ago grease to help smooth the pull action.
4) I keep reading that there usually is an easy way to remove the score reels from the back box for cleaning. I see a screw and pin on the outtermost score wheel(ones place), and even if I get that one I don't know how I would remove the 10's 100's etc place.
Now time to get back to making more dirty rags.

Mushroom bumpers have a clip on the underside under the playfield that hold them in place. Be careful, there's a spring and a sleeve involved too. Don't let it go flying somewhere.

It's an easy job. Much easier than trying to stretch a rubber over the bumper itself.

On the shooter rod, cleaning up the rod can usually cure issues. A tiny, and I mean tiny, drop of 3 in 1 oil will be ok, but I'd kind of wipe it on/off.

#19 9 years ago

I just want to say thanks everyone who has posted here or pm'd me with help. Got everything put back together, and with new rubbers, balls, and a fresh waxing oh boy does this game play fast! I barely have to touch the shooter rod now to try and get the skill shot, unlike before it was basically a full pull.

Now with everything back together I saw a couple minor issues while playing last night which should be easily taken care of. Another thing I found through the whole process is how difficult getting some of the new rubber rings on turned out to be. Had to call in the finance for an extra set of hands.

But I do have one more question (for now )

Anyone have a picture of the tilt assembly? Mine has both a tilt bob mechanism (though mine doesn't have the acutal bob just a thin piece of metal wire) as well as what appears to be some sort of captured ball device with no ball in it. I just want to know what this is supposed to look like and if I am missing anything.

When I get a chance I'll post some more pictures!

#20 9 years ago

You need a plumb bob on the end of the wire you mentioned.

The two mechs are correct. The ball roll tilt is for if you were to raise the front legs to make the game play easier.

The plumb bob tilt is to deter quick actions of pushing the game or sliding it sideways.

#21 9 years ago

Ok thanks. I'll have to figure out how to get a ball in the roll tilt mechanism and buy a new tilt bob as well.

Playing a few multiplayer games on Sunday night showed there is now a rare instance (happened once out of probably twenty games) where the ball count does not go up and stays on the previous number after a drain. So looks like I will have to go through and clean that stepper motor as well.

Also noticed buzzing in what I would assume are hold relays for the vulcano and skill shot, as well as when I hold the left flipper. Anyone have link with pictures on adjusting the relays for less buzzing? I am reading http://www.pinrepair.com/em/index3.htm#buzz but this being the first time I'm doing any of this, pictures help showing what it should look like in the end

#22 9 years ago
Quoted from orangestorm87:

Ok thanks. I'll have to figure out how to get a ball in the roll tilt mechanism and buy a new tilt bob as well.
Playing a few multiplayer games on Sunday night showed there is now a rare instance (happened once out of probably twenty games) where the ball count does not go up and stays on the previous number after a drain. So looks like I will have to go through and clean that stepper motor as well.
Also noticed buzzing in what I would assume are hold relays for the vulcano and skill shot, as well as when I hold the left flipper. Anyone have link with pictures on adjusting the relays for less buzzing? I am reading http://www.pinrepair.com/em/index3.htm#buzz but this being the first time I'm doing any of this, pictures help showing what it should look like in the end

Just push the ball in from the side. It will go in easily.

#23 9 years ago

Ok playing many more games I have noticed another "issue" and has me questioning the rules.

What do you need to do to light up the pop bumpers so that when hit they score 100 points? I thought you simply had to hit a pop bumpers corresponding roll over switch with the current ball in play, regardless of making the skill shot, going up and over the ramp, or only going up the ramp slightly.

I have noticed a few times, and I think it was on player two but not 100% certain, that some ramp shots would hit a roll over switch and light the corresponding pop bumper for an instant before it turns off again, and the pop bumper thus only scores 10 points.

TLDR: Is there a rule I am missing on lighting up the pop bumpers?

#24 9 years ago

Ramp shot lights the pop bumpers. They are OFF at the start of every new ball. When you plunge, each of the 3 switches you hit will turn the light ON for the corresponding color pop bumper. If you go over the final pterodactyl switch, they still remain lit through the ball. That's how it should work. If you hit the switches and the bumper doesn't stay engaged then something isn't engaging that pop bumper relay enough for it to hold.

#25 9 years ago

As I thought, more under playfield time for me tonight.

2 months later
#26 8 years ago

So a new issue popped up tonight, and of course it happened while my fiance was on her way to setting the high score. She was on ball four of five and had a two ball multiball going. When one drained, it stayed her turn. When the remaining ball was put in the volcanoe the machine advanced the player back to me and put a new ball in the shooter lane. It should not have done that. Any idea where I need to look for this problem?

Also another rule question. When you hit the skill shot by hitting the pterodactyl switch and rolling down the ramp, if you hit any of the switches again should you get 1000 points?

#27 8 years ago
Quoted from orangestorm87:

She was on ball four of five and had a two ball multiball going. When one drained, it stayed her turn. When the remaining ball was put in the volcanoe the machine advanced the player back to me and put a new ball in the shooter lane. It should not have done that. Any idea where I need to look for this problem?

FWIW: This game and other EM multi-balls don't react like a solid state game. If you drain while and the other ball is about to be locked, it will more than likely, count it as the ball lock FIRST and the DRAIN second, therefor ending your ball.

One day, I hope to own one of these

#28 8 years ago

Well I don't remember it being all that close together in happening (time-wise that is). Awhile ago I also had it happen while I had a ball get locked in the tarpit and the same adancing of the player instead of just a new ball occurred.

4 weeks later
#29 8 years ago

While looking into why my backbox lights don't come on, I noticed the every single fuse holder in my machine is broken. I was able to go to a radio shack and get a new fuse holder but now the problem. I tried to de-solder the wires on the old broken one, but it seems my cheapo soldering iron does not get hot enough to liquify the solder on there.

Any suggestions on how to remove this solder, or do I just do the hack thing and solder additional wires from the old fuse holder to my new one?

#30 8 years ago
Quoted from orangestorm87:

Any suggestions on how to remove this solder, or do I just do the hack thing and solder additional wires from the old fuse holder to my new one?

Buy a good soldering gun off Amazon as you do not want cold solder joints causing you more grief.

I have 4 different ones and recommend this one that will take take of all your medium and heavy duty soldering.

http://www.amazon.com/D550PK-120-volt-200-watt-Professional-Soldering/dp/B00002N7S1/ref=sr_1_5

Ken

#31 8 years ago

Do you have enough excess wire that you could just cut the wire from the existing fuse holder and then strip the wire and solder it to the new fuse holder? If so, that would be easier than trying to desolder the existing wires.

Dave

#32 8 years ago

I should have just enough, but do I need to use the more high grade solder or will the stuff I have from Radio Shack be ok?

#33 8 years ago

Mid Morning soldering help bump

#34 8 years ago

I'm not a soldering expert so I'm not sure but I would think the solder you have would suffice. Maybe one of the soldering experts out there could tell you if you need a different kind of solder but I think you'll be ok with what you have.

#35 8 years ago

So I took Egyptrus' advice and simply snipped off all the end points of the old fuse holder and put in my new one. I think it turned out pretty good. That and when I turned my machine on, the Backbox Lights came on just made it all that much sweeter.

Some pictures from the process.

Old & Busted
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(I really like the floating "new" holder they put in)

Old Removed
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New & Sexy
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#36 8 years ago

Best part of the whole thing was the screw holes in the new Radio Shack fuse holder board matched up exactly with two of holes for the old one. That and the screws fit as well, so I didn't need to do anything new there.

I chose the rightmost two holes for wire length reasons.

#37 8 years ago

It looks like you did a pretty nice job and the fact that it works is proof that your work was good! I'm glad you were able to clip the wires and solder them into the new fuse holders. Good job!

Dave

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