Junk Yard is Acting Crazy


By TopMoose

1 week ago


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  • 9 posts
  • 5 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 week ago by Mbecker
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#1 9 days ago

Hi, Tech friends! I could use some help with a weird problem on my Junk Yard. I do have a manual, but I'm not great at diagnosing problems with modern games.

When I hit both flippers at the same time, it appears to trigger several of the opto switches. Specifically, I'll hit both flippers at the start of a game to cancel the intro animation and, before even launching the ball, the shooter lane opto registers a hit, the Alley opto registers a hit (causing DOG to advance) and the crane tunnel in the back registers a hit, scoring a sneak-in and advancing MULTIBALL. If I keep hitting both flippers together, MULTIBALL will advance, a multiball will start, balls will eject and keep shooting out and jackpots and super jackpots wil score on their own. It's insanity.

After a few days of poking around, I can report that:

1. There are no errors reported on boot-up.
2. A Single Switch test shows no problems - all the switches ( including the flippers) function normally in test mode.
3. All of the optos involved are on column 4 of the switch matrix.
4. To pinoint the problem, I tried disconnecting each switch (including the flippers) in turn and testing the game, but in each case all the other opto switches would go crazy like before.
5. There does appear to be some weirdness with the right flipper opto: in a multimeter test, pin 6 (+12V), which connects directly to the left flipper opto board, seems to be in circuit with pin 4 (ground) and, according to the diagrams that's not supposed to happen.
6. I've also checked all of the connectors, thinking that maybe on of them is plugged in backwards, but they're all keyed and they all seem to check out.

I've traced the problem through both flipper optos, the coin door board, the Power Driver and CPU boards and can't seem to find the point of contact that's causing a short circuit. I've also cleaned out as many opto lenses as I can reach.

In my experience, these kinds of issues tend to require tiny adjustments, rather than replacement of whole boards, but it's a matter of tracking down where the problem occurs. Maybe it could be as simple as installing a new right flipper opto?

Let me know if you have insight, if you have questions or can suggest any tests I should try. Your help is appreciated! Thanks in advance!

#2 8 days ago

I don't think the shooter lane or dog advance use optos. I believe they use micro switches. You may have something shorting a switch column

#3 8 days ago
Quoted from cad-kid:

I don't think the shooter lane or dog advance use optos. I believe they use micro switches. You may have something shorting a switch column

Quoted from cad-kid:

I don't think the shooter lane or dog advance use optos. I believe they use micro switches. You may have something shorting a switch column

There's an opto at the end of the shooter lane - switch 41, called "After Spinner." It's listed at the top of switch column 4.

You're correct that the only way to advance DOG is with the "scoop made" and "dog entry" micro switches - I'll check them out!

#4 7 days ago

Lots of testing tonight and I've made a major breakthrough - in a switch test with the coin door closed, engaging both of the flipper EOS switches at the same time seems to cause the closed opto switches to flicker. This would register all of them at once as hit, which is causing the weird behavior. I've re-gapped and filed the EOS contacts and it's much better now. There's still some minor adjusting to make yet, but I think this might be the solution.

Also, while I was looking into every possible area that might cause problems, I checked the power switch fuse at the bottom of the cabinet and discovered that the previous owner had rolled up a wad of tin foil and jammed it in there in place of an actual 5A fuse. So... no more surprise fire hazard!

#5 7 days ago
Quoted from TopMoose:

Lots of testing tonight and I've made a major breakthrough - in a switch test with the coin door closed, engaging both of the flipper EOS switches at the same time seems to cause the closed opto switches to flicker. This would register all of them at once as hit, which is causing the weird behavior. I've re-gapped and filed the EOS contacts and it's much better now. There's still some minor adjusting to make yet, but I think this might be the solution.
Also, while I was looking into every possible area that might cause problems, I checked the power switch fuse at the bottom of the cabinet and discovered that the previous owner had rolled up a wad of tin foil and jammed it in there in place of an actual 5A fuse. So... no more surprise fire hazard!

Great detective work!

#6 7 days ago

Are you closing the EOS switches by hand or by powering the flippers? If powered up, I t sounds to me like a vibration issue from the flippers affecting a possible cracked solder joint or wire on an opto or maybe a cracked diode on a switch. I would go to switch test mode and tap around the opto areas and also the switches with your finger and see if any thing gets triggered. Also give a slight gentle tap to each switch diode and make sure none have come loose, especially the shooter land switch. I've seen that happen, diode wiggled due to cold solder joint and caused all kinds of issues on a CV I had

#7 7 days ago
Quoted from PNBLWZD:

Are you closing the EOS switches by hand or by powering the flippers? If powered up, I t sounds to me like a vibration issue from the flippers affecting a possible cracked solder joint or wire on an opto or maybe a cracked diode on a switch. I would go to switch test mode and tap around the opto areas and also the switches with your finger and see if any thing gets triggered. Also give a slight gentle tap to each switch diode and make sure none have come loose, especially the shooter land switch. I've seen that happen, diode wiggled due to cold solder joint and caused all kinds of issues on a CV I had

Excellent advice - I'll do some poking around this weekend to pinpoint the problem. So far, I've only used the flipper buttons to engage the EOS switches, rather than closing them by hand.

#8 7 days ago
Quoted from TopMoose:

I checked the power switch fuse at the bottom of the cabinet and discovered that the previous owner had rolled up a wad of tin foil and jammed it in there in place of an actual 5A fuse. So... no more surprise fire hazard

Glad you found this!

#9 7 days ago

So you determined it’s an entire row or part of a row being activated when both eos switches close? And it’s not just optos, correct?

Thoughts: if only optos, could be a quick dip in the 12v supply to them that causes the phantom trigger when the Eos switches close. I think those Eos switches are 12v, so that could also be related to the optos and possibly a fault.

Certainly as pointed out - it would be helpful to manually close the switches in switch test to see what happens. If only one opto triggered I would think possible crack in joint or bad opto but with multiple switches being triggered that doesn’t seem as likely

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