(Topic ID: 256249)

Gottlieb System 3 Shaq Switch matrix row out

By junkyardjedi

2 years ago

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  • 36 posts
  • 5 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 2 years ago by junkyardjedi
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders


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#1 2 years ago

I have a system 3 shaq with an entire row of the switch matrix out (return line 2) as well as half the flasher lights(all new bulbs) all the A3J5 flashers are out. None of the switches are stuck closed and I did an edge test. I'm at a loss where to start at this point can anyone point me in the right direction? I do have a copy of the manual

#2 2 years ago

First before test anything, you'de better shunt all ground wires (whites wires next to the transformator at the top left) as it is preconized on pinrepair.com


Also check all fuses continuity. Those on the right of the tranformator. Pull them out of there brackets to test them and don't forget to disconnect the power before any works near to the tranformator then switch pinball on and back to off, to discharge big capacitors next to transformator.
Good luck

#3 2 years ago

A problem with an entire row or column of the switch or lamp matrix usually means a bad transistor that controls that row or a ground issue.

#4 2 years ago

The grounds were all redone prior to me buying the machine so that should be in order and fuses were removed and checked for continuity

#5 2 years ago

With the power off, check continuity from the switch lug connected to one of the return wires to the Molex connector corresponding to that wire in the back box. If no continuity, you may have a broken wire somewhere, or maybe need to repin the connector. Check all switches in the row.

If there is continuity, then I would remove the Molex connector and (now with the power on) take a jumper wire and with the game in switch test mode, jump the send and return pins corresponding to each switch in that row. If they don’t register, then it seems like a board problem.

Note that I’m unfamiliar with this game and Gottliebs in general, but I assume they work in the same way. Someone more familiar with them can perhaps confirm.

If you are not sure how to do this, let me know, and I can provide more detail.

#6 2 years ago

I'm not 100% on what you said however I do have continuity from the playfield plug to the board as well as continuity from the backboard (first switch) to that same plug

#7 2 years ago

Ok. On the games where I’ve done this, the connector on the board connects to a set of pins. Each pin corresponds to a row or a column on the switch matrix. You would need to look at the schematics to figure out which pins are which. If you take a jumper wire with alligator clips on the end and put a straightened out paper clip in the clips, you can use that to jump the pins on the board. You essentially want to have the send pin connect to the return pin corresponding to a particular switch. This simulates the switch being closed. It is a way to test if the board is working.

#8 2 years ago

Ok just to be clear the solenoids are working just not the sensor so a ball will land in that hole and will not be recognized by the CPU and wont get kicked out till all the solenoids run through their cycle

#9 2 years ago

Are there optos? If so, someone else better chime in as to whether there are separate opto boards that could be causing the problem.

However, you have described a problem with a whole row of switches. This wouldn’t affect the solenoids. What I said earlier was about trying to isolate whether there was a problem with the board or playfield. But, if there are separate opto boards, it may be a bit more complicated, and I would want someone else familiar with this game to chime in.

#10 2 years ago

I know some system 3 games do have optos but I am unsure if shaq does

#11 2 years ago

See if this helps

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#12 2 years ago

So the flasher lamp issue could be connected to the switch matrix issue I am having? Bear with me you guys this is the first pinball repair I have started on. I usually am working on standard arcade games and monitors

#13 2 years ago

The switch matrix and lamp matrix are controlled on the same strobes. So a lamp issue can cause problems on the switch matrix and vice versa, put the game in lamp test mode and individually cycle through and check each lamp, look for 2 lamps illuminating at once, or one that is dim. Your manual will have a diagram of the driver board switch and lamp matrix showing what controls what.

#14 2 years ago

The problem with that is because of the switch matrix issue I am having the right flipper isnt recognized by the CPU so I can't really navigate the service menus properly. I have a the lamp matrix and switch matrix's printed out

#15 2 years ago
Quoted from gottlieb_fanatic:

See if this helps[quoted image]

Great info!

So, wait, the diodes are all on one board, not on individual switches?

#16 2 years ago

When I go into the lamp matrix menu there is no option to check the flashers so they must not be directly connected to the matrix

#17 2 years ago

Dang, you could try pushing the test button to get the all lamp and flashers to come on and see if any are not working. Here's another article from pinrepair about unplugging connector A3J4 which will disconnect the lamp matrix from the driver board to see if the problem still occurs with it disconnected. On my super Mario Bros in lamp test mode I can individually check all CPU lamps and flashers to, the flashers are after all the regular lamps.

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#18 2 years ago

Your are right, the flashers are in the relay and solenoid test, they aren't controlled by the lamp matrix, I forgot they were part of the solenoid test mode last time I went through it

#19 2 years ago

@Nokoro , I think so, I just had an issue on my super Mario Bros with the 7 islands that light up around the back glass as castles are destroyed, there are 2 bulbs per island, islands 1-3 are controlled by strobe A on the lamp matrix and islands 4-7 are on strobe B, on strobe A everything worked, on strobe B island 4 worked but only one bulb in #5 and #7 worked and both on #6 didn't, since others in the same row were working I knew it couldn't be a board problem or wiring problem, turns out that there had been a voltage surge or something because all of the 1N4004 diodes on each lamp socket that weren't working tested bad, I went ahead and removed all 6 sockets for islands 5-7 and soldered in new diodes and everything works, I guess the switches are the same way with the diodes at the switch like the lamps.

#20 2 years ago

I believe only two or three of the flashers are working the rest were replaced with new units but show no signs of life. I'm going to order some 220ohm resistors and pull both boards that have them on it and pull a leg and test them.

#21 2 years ago

Good luck, I just started working on my first pinball machine , a super Mario Bros, a few months ago so I still don't know a whole lot about the gottlieb system 3 but im learning more and more, let us know what you find.

#22 2 years ago
Quoted from junkyardjedi:I'm going to order some 220ohm resistors and pull both boards that have them on it and pull a leg and test them.

No need to unsolder a leg. Disconnecting the board from the playfield wiring will allow you to measure them.
Order some 1N4148 diodes as well.
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#23 2 years ago

OP, are you not able to get into switch test mode at all? Because, if you are, the first thing to try is jumping the pins for the columns and rows like I said. The first article posted tells you how.

#24 2 years ago

Well when I got the machine I had GI and nothing else so I rebuilt the DMD board, removed the original lithium cell and placed a socket for easy removal, replaced and socketed both 4116 RAM chips on the sound board. So its gone from barely functioning to nearly 90% but this last 10% has been brutal LOL

#25 2 years ago

I'm not really sure how to jump the pins and without seeing what to do I dont want to cause any more damage by doing something incorrectly

#26 2 years ago

Not the exact same issue, but similar concept. For you, you want to jump the pin for the row and the column for each switch in that row that is out. You won’t be going to ground. As I said, I put a paper clip in each alligator clip to help touch the pins since they are close together. Follow the instructions in the article. This is just an example of jumping pins to see if you have a board issue.

#27 2 years ago

To be more clear. The computer sends a signal out through one of the pins on the back box. That signal travels down the connector, through the wire and gets to the switch. When the switch is closed, the signal goes through the switch, back up the wire and back to the connector in the backbox where it connects to a different pin. So, if you jump those two pins, you are effectively closing the circuit and simulating a closed switch. There should be a pin for each column and a pin for each row. So, you need to find the appropriate column and row by looking at the schematics, and jump those two pins.

#28 2 years ago

I watched that video but to me it wasnt clear as far as what I actually needed to be doing I'm going to look at those resistors and diodes and go from there for now and if that doesnt resolve my problem then I'll start looking at how to jump these connections I guess

#29 2 years ago

I checked all the diodes and resistors on that board and they all are within tolerances. Any other ideas?

#30 2 years ago

Check wiring for that row, should be color coded in the switch matrix diagram, check diodes for each switch on that row, has a lamp matrix issue been eliminated as a possible cause yet?

#31 2 years ago

Yeah I pulled the plug with no changes..

#32 2 years ago

Then the problem is in the board or switch matrix or the wiring

#33 2 years ago

Yup I guess the easyiest thing to eliminate would be the board. So I've gotta figure out how to jump those switches

#34 2 years ago

That's where I would start.

#35 2 years ago

I don’t know of this will make things clearer, but I first learned about jumping pins associated with the switch matrix in this thread:


TerryB was very helpful in helping me diagnose a problem of my own making. Halfway down the first page, he tells me how to jumper the pins. Of course, it is a different game, so you will need to look at your schematics and figure out how to do it on yours. But perhaps it helps a bit.

#36 2 years ago

Which plugs did you pull from the driver board? I'm having trouble matching up the correct colors

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