Gottlieb Big Brave won't start anymore


By TimC

1 week ago


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  • 22 posts
  • 8 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 2 days ago by currieddog
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#1 10 days ago

Bought the game from a private collector about a month ago. Played great at home then just stopped after a couple weeks. I've manually flipped the reset bank, when I power on it pulls in the QB (game over) and ZB (1st ball) relays. However, pushing the start game button on coin door doesn't do anything (used to lite player one and go thru the whole score reset, drop target reset, etc). Where do I go from here?

I uploaded a video in case that helps at all.

» YouTube video

First time owner/poster, so please go easy on me. Thanks!

#2 9 days ago

The first thing the replay button does is activate the Replay Button (V) relay. If yours isn't doing that and you have replays on the counter, diagnose why with this circuit. Do you know how to use Alligator Jumper wires?
http://www.pinrepair.com/em/index3.htm#features

Pinball (resized).png

#3 9 days ago
Quoted from HowardR:

The first thing the replay button does is activate the Replay Button (V) relay. If yours isn't doing that and you have replays on the counter, diagnose why with this circuit. Do you know how to use Alligator Jumper wires?
http://www.pinrepair.com/em/index3.htm#features

Thanks, I'll look into that. I believe my game is set up for free play and has the credit wheel bypassed as it used to start with 0 credits on the back glass reel, so that may be a non-issue? There are 3 credits on it now but those were free plays given for high score. I've had up to 7 I think but that was never an issue. It would actually take the credit off I'd there was one on the reel, but would start at 0 without issue as well.

#4 9 days ago

If you have a multi-meter you can check if there is voltage at the start/credit button. Check if there is around 25 volts AC at the orange wire on the start/credit button switch. This will tell you what part of the start circuit to look at...

#5 9 days ago

Another thing I should mention, when it started failing it would say finish ball 2, but when it kicked ball 3 the backboard would go off "2" but not light "3". I'd turn it off and on, start a new game and it would work fine. Then after this happening a few times, one time I started a game and it just started racking up points without even plunging. Turned the machine off and back on, and that's when it stopped resetting entirely.

#6 9 days ago
Quoted from TimC:

Another thing I should mention, when it started failing it would say finish ball 2, but when it kicked ball 3 the backboard would go off "2" but not light "3". I'd turn it off and on, start a new game and it would work fine. Then after this happening a few times, one time I started a game and it just started racking up points without even plunging. Turned the machine off and back on, and that's when it stopped resetting entirely.

That sounds like a playfield switch is making contact when it should not be.

#7 9 days ago
Quoted from Briehl:

That sounds like a playfield switch is making contact when it should not be.

That's what I thought, but would that keep it from starting a new game?

#8 9 days ago

Hi TimC
I see in Your video as You manually reset the Control-Bank - then toggle-on and the ZB-First-Ball-Relay plunges and the QB-Game-Over-Relay plunges --- both is needed and done in Your pin, good.

There is one more thing You may try --- (the pin is toggled-off): Stepping the Player-Unit to Home-Position and some 16, 17 steps further - please read here https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/magnotron-not-resetting-fully#post-3979911 starting from "The secrets of the Player Unit" ... till the end of the text. See (there) in the second JPG the (fifth cam) "Home-Position" --- it is much better to step some steps BEYOND the Home-Position - then manually reset the Control-Bank - then toggle-on and then try to start a game.
If still "No luck": Try a little cheating - use a wooden stick and press / move the armature on the S-Start-Relay. Greetings Rolf

#9 9 days ago
Quoted from TimC:

That's what I thought, but would that keep it from starting a new game?

I'm not sure why it would, but for now I would manually press the start relay and get it through its start sequence. Then when it starts scoring points, I would find which switches award that point increment and check them all to figure out which is stuck on. If that solves the start problem, then great.

If not, I would check the switches on your replay unit (assuming you have checked and confirmed that you have credits on the wheel) there are switches there that if they are not making contact it will not allow you to begin a game.

#10 9 days ago

Well, I cleaned up the start relay contacts a little and just turned the scoring motor a few clicks. Turned it on and it's resetting fine and advancing ball, scoring, etc! Any guesses as to what did it?

» YouTube video

#11 8 days ago
Quoted from rolf_martin_062:

Hi TimC
I see in Your video as You manually reset the Control-Bank - then toggle-on and the ZB-First-Ball-Relay plunges and the QB-Game-Over-Relay plunges --- both is needed and done in Your pin, good.
There is one more thing You may try --- (the pin is toggled-off): Stepping the Player-Unit to Home-Position and some 16, 17 steps further - please read here https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/magnotron-not-resetting-fully#post-3979911 starting from "The secrets of the Player Unit" ... till the end of the text. See (there) in the second JPG the (fifth cam) "Home-Position" --- it is much better to step some steps BEYOND the Home-Position - then manually reset the Control-Bank - then toggle-on and then try to start a game.
If still "No luck": Try a little cheating - use a wooden stick and press / move the armature on the S-Start-Relay. Greetings Rolf

Thank you so much for your help Rolf! I definitely played with the start relay and motor and by some luck she got her bearings and started clunking away! Played about 30 games thru her and no issues yet! (besides a cracking rail I just noticed... And a couple lights out... And cracked plastics edges... Why do I look so close??!)

#12 8 days ago

The switches in EMs do get dirt in the contacts periodically. Sounds like that is what happened here.

#13 8 days ago
Quoted from D-Gottlieb:

The switches in EMs do get dirt in the contacts periodically. Sounds like that is what happened here.

Do you think it was the start relay? Or something keeping it from reading motor position correctly?

-1
#14 7 days ago

Dirty contacts in several switches. If it it starts acting strange again, adjust and clean as needed. It's not a bad idea to go through every relay and make sure they are in spec.

#15 7 days ago
Quoted from D-Gottlieb:

The switches in EMs do get dirt in the contacts periodically. Sounds like that is what happened here.

Quoted from D-Gottlieb:

Dirty contacts in several switches. If it it starts acting strange again, adjust and clean as needed. It's not a bad idea to go through every relay and make sure they are in spec.

Sorry but I have to disagree.

As to the first, properly adjusted switches will almost always stay clean and working for years. To the second, bank and motor switches are prone to being jarred by untrained fingers and accidentally moved out of adjustment, causing new problems. Even normal relay switches can suffer from attention from untrained fingers.

With that said, @d-gottlieb, if you have a maintenance routine that works for you then I wouldn't want to tell you what to do, but for others with less experience, I highly recommend only fixing what's broken.

#16 6 days ago

Yes, I agree with your ideology. However, I continue to run across EMs that are adjusted and look ok, but the contacts are just plain covered in crud. Like I have said before, to own an EM is to work on it as well. Once it is adjusted and cleaned up, as far as the contacts are concerned, it should last for years without further attention.

#17 3 days ago

So, a little insight... Remember how I mentioned it was racking points before I turned it off, then it wouldn't start again? Well, I realized the top drop target is sticking. It did it again and I played the ball out, hitting the drop target rack seemed to shake it loose and start playing normally again. Sounds like another project!

To the above conversation, I was told not to work on multiple switches at once since that could confuse things. I sanded the start relay only, and spun the motor. I don't know which fixed it. But I have a feeling every contact in this game could use a filing. As long as I don't bend anything, this shouldn't break anything...? Right? Maybe?

#18 3 days ago

And another question to technique, should I just be filing contacts or using an electrical contact cleaner?

#19 3 days ago

If you want your game to go up in flames, then contact cleaner will help.

This is a great resource:
http://www.pinwiki.com/wiki/

#20 3 days ago

Hi TimC +
I often read in pinside about "using a flexstone" for cleaning contact-points. Actually - I never have seen such --- here in Switzerland I / we use very fine sandpaper --- it is so fine and its called "car polishing cloth" - as some people use it to "freshen up old car paint" - actually they "sandpaper away" a bit of the car paint ...
I often read "a stripe of rough cardbord - rough card" is enough for cleaning the contact points.

I like the "precious Self-Cleaning of contacts" --- well-adjusted switches. I believe in the 50% rule --- want to see here https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/grand-prix-reset-issue/page/2#post-3831198 and then follow the link. Greetings Rolf
P.S.: Gottlieb pins / switches have very little travel of the switchblades --- in Gottlieb pins I usually am happy to adjust the switch so it works and take everything from 30 to 70% ...

#21 3 days ago
Quoted from HowardR:

Sorry but I have to disagree.
As to the first, properly adjusted switches will almost always stay clean and working for years. To the second, bank and motor switches are prone to being jarred by untrained fingers and accidentally moved out of adjustment, causing new problems. Even normal relay switches can suffer from attention from untrained fingers.
With that said, d-gottlieb, if you have a maintenance routine that works for you then I wouldn't want to tell you what to do, but for others with less experience, I highly recommend only fixing what's broken.

This ^^^^^^^^^^ x 100!

If you are new to EM's I guarantee that if you go and clean/adjust every switch in game you will make things worse. As @howardr says it is much easier to fix what is broken! Why clean 100's of switches and riskj making things worse when you actually only need to find the one switch that needs attention and deal with it.

I do appreciate that sometimes it may be necessary to go through all the switches if you don't have a schematic and have come to a halt in troubleshooting. However, usually enough info can be gleaned from schematics of the same era in order to point you in the right direction. There is lots of help on Pinside...I personally enjoy the challenge of trying to pinpoint the faulty switch and love to help others when I have the schematic available.

BTW my first game ever was Jack in The Box that I purchased back in 1983 - I remember using contact cleaner I mean why wouldn't you right!? Thankfully the machine didn't catch fire.... but I sure was lucky!

#22 2 days ago

Oh my GAWD!!! when I think back on some of the things I subjected my first EM to ... luckily, unless you get a fire going, they're fairly forgiving.

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