(Topic ID: 264445)

High Speed Restoration in low speed. (Jan 2020)

By Pin-Pilot

75 days ago

Topic Stats

  • 103 posts
  • 14 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 day ago by eyeamred2u
  • Topic is favorited by 25 Pinsiders


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Topic poll

“Should I wrap the lines around the front of the cabinet?”

  • Wrap the lines around the front of the cabinet 3 votes
  • Don't do it 0 votes
  • Just play pinball 2 votes

(5 votes)

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There are 103 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 3.
#1 75 days ago

Ok, I am in the middle of my #high-speed restoration project. This is my first restoration of this level. I have brought back to life several EM machines and love a good challenge.

I purchased the pin back in July of 2019. It was in rough shape. Been in a humid environment as there is lots of rusty parts. All the boards were original and there was ZERO acid damage. Got a great deal on it, previous owner just wanted it out of his garage. Had "Adjust Failure" message when turned on. At the time I did not know the meaning of the message but figured for $150.00 it was worth it. It was my second SYS 11 game after finding a #pool-sharks that had several issues and the previous owner did not have any troubleshooting skills.

I played the High Speed for several months. Really liked the theme and the play. The playfield was in bad shape. The cabinet needed a lot of attention as well. Pretty much every corner of this game needs some type of help. One of the displays was gassed out. I bought a display from a fellow Pinsider that converted to aftermarket display. I like keeping a game in as much original condition as possible.

I lucked out and was in the market when CPR ran a batch of playfields in October 2019. They sold out rather quickly. I bought a playfield, Backglass and plastics. Wanted to let the playfield topcoat cure for a good month so I did not start the restoration until January. A little later than I planned.

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I am currently about 60% into the restoration right now. Have been posting some progress pics in the High Speed Club thread but that is really not the proper thread to be posting a restoration so I decided to start this thread.

Do not want to be long winded here so I will start posting some of the progress from the beginning and hopefully catch up to current restore progress soon.

Here are the pics of the pin when I purchased it.

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As you can see, the cabinet is trashed - weathered

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#2 75 days ago

I first researched the "adjust failure" and quickly discovered that it was a simple fix. Needed Batteries installed. My first worry was that there would be acid damage. I really lucked out, the MPU board was in perfect condition with virtually no damage.

First modification I did was to order and installed Pinitech NVRAM on the CPU board. https://www.pinitech.com/products/6116_nvram.php

I quickly removed the battery holder and checked for damage. That was the easy part. installing the NVRAM was a good deal more difficult but not beyond my capabilities.

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Installed new glass display. Originally ordered "Numeric" display not realizing I needed "Alpha Numeric" display. Ordered from a Pinsider on eBay and he realized I was looking for Alpla Numeric and not the numeric display he was selling. Refunded my money and I bought the Alpha Numeric from PBR.

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Flippers were weak due to EOS switches and flipper switches were old and pitted. I replaced all.

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#3 73 days ago

Before I completely tore the playfield down I started Molex'ing all the coils, and switches. I could do this beforehand for a couple reasons. First it makes it much easier to transfer components to the new playfield. Secondly when it came time to separate the wire harness for cleaning it would be a lot easier. Adding Molex is a lot of work but makes for super easy part replacement and diagnostics in the future.

Virtually every part on this pin had some degree of rust, mounting plates, every screw, coil mounts, every spring... you name it. I think even the plastic parts joined in on the rust-fest. I decided to replace all the hardware instead of trying to clean it up in the tumbler. An example of every screw I pulled out of the playfield

Molex progress

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Hardware was trash

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Coin Door was REALLY bad

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Took it to the Powder coat shop.

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Even the Credit button was well on its way to rust-ville

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A little Nickel plating makes it all good. Not that you will see much of this part I know it is there and shinny clean

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Door coin mechanism was not spared any corrosion either

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Much Better

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#4 71 days ago

Looks like things are coming along nicely. Following

#5 69 days ago

Nothing better than getting a box full of much needed pinball parts.

Time to change out a few more hard to find Molex connectors...

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#6 69 days ago

Spent a lot of time installing Molex connectors on all the coils, switches and targets. Makes for very easy troubleshooting and parts repair/replacement down the line. It is a lot of work locating, buying, and installing the connectors but a must for a quality restore.

The preparation
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Purchased all new standup targets. All new diodes installed and tested. Wired with .93 molex connectors. Most switches I use .62 Molex connectors however doing the standups with .93 because they are grouped together and use larger gauge wire.

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Finding all the correct Molex connectors was a bit of a chore. Not one retailer had all the connectors I needed for the restore. Finally got the last few 15 and 24 circuit connectors today and got them installed. Mostly the connectors were ok but after 27 years they are brittle and having new shiny connectors is the right thing to do.

Labeling the connectors also helps in diagnostics and troubleshooting.
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This game will have all LED lights so not a huge deal but would be if there were normal #44 bulbs in the game.

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I usually do not replace the crimp terminals, just swap them from the old to the new connector. I did this one since they power the 3 groups of GI lighting directly from the transformer.

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1 week later
#7 61 days ago

All underside mechanics, Switches and coils now on Molex connectors with short and polarity protection.

Laid out playfield GI sockets for stapling and wire braid run. Re-routed some GI braid and harness wiring for cleaner install and shorter wire runs.
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Installed new Hideout microswitch diodes. Install diode inline with clear heat shrink and color correct wire.
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Rust everywhere on this HS
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The trough is a busy area. take lots of notes/pics
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Progress on the underside
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Gutted the cabinet, started sanding and came to the conclusion I need a new cabinet. Just too much water rot to resurrect this poor soul.
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It is not easy to secure a new cabinet. Still in the process of trying to have one made. Looks like this restore just got extended a few months. *sigh*
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Turned my attention to some electrical parts. New Line filter and MOV installed.
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Then rejuvenated the Transformer with a new coat of black gloss paint and a base of metal etch. Came out real well I think.
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1 week later
#8 53 days ago

Progress on the speaker panel. Replacing it for 2 reasons. The obvious it has a huge crack on one side and needs replacing. The second reason is I am going to add a 2nd speaker for better sound. Cut a new piece of MDF to the correct size.

The old speaker cover was weathered as well so it needed replacing.
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I found some material at the local Joann Fabrics store. The old backing was covered in glue so I purchased a piece of aluminum backing for the new material and cut it to size.
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Glued the new cover on the backing with fabric glue.
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The old panel was in poor shape
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I used it as a template to route new slots for the new speakers.
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New speakers should make for some good police chase sounds.
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Even though it will not be seen behind the speaker cover the red speaker cone sure looks good
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Out with the old, in with the new.
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#9 52 days ago

Finished up the upgraded speaker panel this afternoon.

Ran into a couple issues.

The tweeter extends about 1/4 inch beyond the speaker mounting ring. You can see in this picture. I decided to route away the MDF to accommodate the tweeter. This was a better option than creating a spacer to raise the speaker off the MDF which was my original thought. This made for a lower profile and cleaner mount.
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Normally you do not want anything directly in front of a tweeter since they are directional however there is probably not a lot of use for the tweeter in the sound High Speed creates so I am not overly concerned about it.
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The other minor issue I noticed after test placing the new cloth and metal grill was the Backglass Chanel was reflecting the aluminum I used to mount the speaker grill cloth. It may not have been noticeable when all was said and done however it was noticeable now and that is not ok. So I took a Sharpie paint pen and painted the edge black. You can see in the picture where I painted part and the other part was not painted was showing.
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OK, Speaker panel completed and stored away for assembly phase.
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#10 51 days ago

Been struggling a little with the paint matching process. My lease favorite part of restoration. I am a bit OCD so I will not be happy until it is perfect.

My Cabinet paint I believe has faded over the years, Yea, shocker I know. There are different colors throughout the cabinet. It has faded to a dark maroon on most of the cabinet.

I originally tried matching using color mix in a thread on here from Sherwin Williams but when I got the paint back it seemed very off. The guy at Sherwin said that they no longer had the base and had to substitute. With my cabinet being so faded, it may not have been that far off.

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I had Took the cabinet head in to get it matched but then the color came back way to dark and maroon. Not even close.

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I pulled out my old apron (I bought a new one because this one was a bit tattered) and decided the colors look original. Took it to Ace Hardware and they did a great match on the Red. The Yellow turned out I think too bright. You can see the yellow I got from Sherwin Williams in the test paint on the cabinet. They bright Yellow on the left is from Ace. For some reason the paint match unit was not giving a good workable reading so I found a color I thought was close and had a sample can mixed up, too Yellow. ...Or at least I thought. Looking at the picture here makes me think otherwise. It seems to match rather closely to the Apron. I think it could stand to be a touch darker. I have come to the conclusion that I cannot use the cabinet as a guide for the new paint

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So I am good with the red and still working on the yellow. At the beginning of the High Speed thread there is a sample of Behr paint "Sun Ray" that seems to be very close. I think I am going to get a sample made and see how close that is. The original color seems to be an Orange-Yellow color. The Behr appears to get very close to this.

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Below are some tests on the cabinet.

The cabinet red just looks very maroon, partially due to the black it was painted over. I need to take a break and let my eyes settle. Its like trying perfume in the store. After a while I can't tell what I like anymore.

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#11 45 days ago

I do not have a CNC machine but I do have a couple power tools that will do the job.

The light panel, like everything else on this pin is out of tolerance and just not fixable. It is pretty hard to fix a warp in MDF. Easier to make a new one. I used the old one as a template like I did with the Speaker panel to drill all the holes and route the Slots for the display cables.

Start with a fresh piece of MDF, Lay out and cut to size.
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Had to remove all the parts from the old board. This was time consuming and cost me a little blood.
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A lot of moisture damage.
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The old warped light panel, That is just not gonna work to use in the restore
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Clamped the 2 boards together and went to work with the drill and the router.
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Complete. Need to find the light boxes for the front of the panel.
Anyone know where these can be found?
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Washed the wire harness and put it in the sun to dry.
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#13 44 days ago

I looked at those, The sizes are just too far off. I think I am going to transfer the old ones over. Short of making a set from 3D printer I need 2.6 X 1.4 X 1.

#14 44 days ago

Your restoration looks great. Can’t wait to see the finished product

#15 44 days ago

Thanks, It is sure a ton of work. The more I dig the more I find a lot of stuff needs replacing or repairing. But now is not the time to skimp. Can't put a Hyundai part on a Rolls Royce. LOL

#16 44 days ago

Primer on the light board is done, Guide coat added, now let it dry overnight, sand and finish with white.
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Baffles are odd size so just transferred them to the new board
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#17 44 days ago

Ok, I have spent a lot of time fussing over the paint over the last couple weeks. I thought I had settled on paint and a method for the most part. Well, not to be. I knew I wanted a 2 part clear coat to finish with. Went to my local auto paint store to purchase the Automotive clear. After about an hour of talking to the very helpful guy behind the counter I ended up walking out with a lot of overwhelming information and complete new approach to painting this #HS restore.

Going with all Automotive base paint, high build primer and 2 part clear. The hardware store paint I matched and was going to use is no longer part of this restore.

The cost will increase about 40% but the finished product quality will increase by 90%. That is a good tradeoff in my book.

I sprayed a sample of the Hardware store paint and took it back to the Auto paint store and he matched it with perfection! There are 2 dabs of the new auto paint on the yellow, see if you can find it. I could not find in the pictures.

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I sprayed my old cabinet with the 2 sample colors. The top Yellow is 2 different paint sprays. The part closest to the red is with the enamel from the hardware store and the top half is from the auto store paint. Like I said, he did a great job matching.

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My paint store goodies...

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I located the OEM paint pantone colors, the Yellow is 123 and the Red is 186

#18 44 days ago

Playfield is pretty much completed. Just rounding up some small parts like the Plastic posts for the playfield plastics. The old ones have yellowed big time. Finding the correct length with correct ID and OD has been challenging. IMG_5988 (resized).jpg

There are 3 wire harness groups. Switches, Solenoids and lights. The wire harnesses got a good cleaning and dried in the sun.
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Replaced all the coil wrappers
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Made a few upgrades to the playfield. A new red Ramp, updated ramp stop light and freeway sign under the ramp in the back of the playfield.
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Also added LED's to the rollover stars with color correct wiring
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#19 44 days ago

Went to work with sandpaper on the light panel. Guide coat all sanded off and ready for white base and then clear. Will be one nice light board!

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#20 43 days ago

Looking awesome. Im liking that rotisserie also. Did you make that yourself?

#21 43 days ago
Quoted from RGarriott:

Looking awesome. Im liking that rotisserie also. Did you make that yourself?

Here is Pin-Pilot's thread on his rotisserie.


#22 43 days ago

Ok, First time ever working with these automotive products. They are absolutely awesome! Even I can make it look good. I am super impressed how the clear finished up. I do not have a perfect paint booth and there are s couple dust specs but over all I think it came out ok! You can almost read the fluorescent tube writing. Let it dry for a couple days then assemble with all new light sockets and wiring and labels.

It even smells good, girlfriend likes the smell.

I feel a lot better about painting my cabinet now that I was able to get this done and looking good.
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#23 43 days ago

Looking good! You will enjoy this pin even more with all the work you are putting into it.

#24 43 days ago
Quoted from RGarriott:

Looking awesome. Im liking that rotisserie also. Did you make that yourself?

This pinball restoring is good for learning new skills! I have honed my welding skills with making Rotisseries, Learned how to Spray Automotive paint and clear, accumulated tools and parts and having fun playing pinball games. Win, Win, Win.

#25 43 days ago
Quoted from uphamj:

Looking good! You will enjoy this pin even more with all the work you are putting into it.

That is very true. It also gets you very knowledgeable with a particular pin.

I AM a bit nervous about the electronic side working 100% when I start to assemble it back together. I have done so many changes and additions. Lets hope my attention to detail is in tact.

#26 43 days ago

Oh, Hell!

I repainted my Tilt insert board a couple weeks ago with the crappy rattle can white and clear. Here is a comparison with the Light board I just painted.

Looks like it's time to sand down the tilt board and bring it up to next level quality. It's just a tilt board you are thinking but It will always haunt me every time I open the cabinet and know it is not as good as it could be. Dang IT!

Actually there is a positive in this. The tilt board was white on the original game in a black cabinet. Not really a good look. The other thing I have been thinking about is why is there even a board for it? there are only 3 items on the board, Tilt ball and track, Tilt Pendulum and the volume control. I imagine Williams put them on the tilt board to make assembly faster... Slop it on the board then screw it into the cabinet. Wham, BAM.

Well I have been thinking of eliminating it all together.

I think I am going to re-locate the volume knob closer to the coin door anyways.

This may just be the drop in the hat that I needed. Anyone think of any reason to not get rid of this board and mount the tilt mechanisms to the inside cabinet?
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#27 42 days ago

Cleaned the metal cabinet heat vents and cabinet speaker cover in preparation to paint and clear.

Things look really nice with a coat of paint and super shiny clear.

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Big improvement over the weathered tin look

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#28 38 days ago

Rounded up all the pieces and parts I need for the light board assembly. As with other areas of this restore I always look to clean up the design if it makes sense. This is no different. I like the look of the bare wire run and it is era appropriate.

The GI bare wire routing Williams originally laid down is a bit convoluted. There are 38 GI bulbs and 5 dedicated bulbs. Williams divided the 38 GI sockets into 2 separate circuits. I made sure I kept the circuits equal as well. Thats just good design.

There were 3 circuits in the OEM design. I have cleaned it up to 2 and that will also eliminate extra solder locations and wire in the wire harness.

I placed all the GI sockets, pulled out the sewing thread and found a much better path for the bare wire. I then opened a pic in Photoshop and traced the wires to each socket. I'll use this as a guide as I lay down the wire and staple. I always like to stick as close as possible to the original design (bare wire in this case) if it makes sense and does not degrade the restore.

Ready to assemble
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The Layout in Photoshop. I will make minor adjustments as I lay down the wire for good clearance and look.
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The OEM layout
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#29 38 days ago

Light Board complete.
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Removed the need for the Brown and Brown/White daisy chain wires.
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Love all the new shiny wires and sockets
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Added a cool MOD that grumpy designed >>> https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/high-speed-club-dispatch-this-is-504-we-have-a-club-now-over/page/28#post-2867480
Tested the GI circuits

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#30 38 days ago

Nice and clean!

#31 37 days ago

Eliminating ugly latch wear-and-tear. Personal touch details.

The original board shows wear from light board latch rubbing.
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Cut out a piece of felt and attached it to the back side of the latch
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Cant have a metal bracket marring the fine finish now can we
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#32 33 days ago

Ok, Light Board is complete. Got the flasher mod wired and installed with Voltage regulator L7812CV from Mouser (Grumpy MOD). All lights wired. Still not sure if I am going to switch over to LED flashers. I will probably get everything up and running see how I like the OEM flashers then maybe go to LED if I get bored or want LED flashers. We'll see.

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#33 32 days ago

Nice Work.. Love HS!!

Quoted from Pin-Pilot:

Eliminating ugly latch wear-and-tear. Personal touch details.
The original board shows wear from light board latch rubbing.
[quoted image]
Cut out a piece of felt and attached it to the back side of the latch
[quoted image][quoted image]
Cant have a metal bracket marring the fine finish now can we
[quoted image]

#34 29 days ago

Looking great so far! Keep it up. What are you going to do for the cabinet?

1 week later
#35 20 days ago

OK, been in a holding pattern awaiting cabinet arrival. Picked it up last week.
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Did a handful of prep to the new cabinet.

Had to tighten up the back glass channel
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Drill Head for Light Board hinge brackets.
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Sand and prep for paint
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Mask off cabinet
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Decided to put in updated start switch for my HS. Had to rig up a template since there was already a hole.
First Drill through with 1" Forstner bit to fit larger diameter switch body. Clamped a piece of plywood on the back so when I drill through it does not splinter and makes a clean cut. That was the easy part.
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Then use a 1 3/8" Forstner bit to recess the switch body.
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Notched the recess to match the new switch so it lines up correctly.
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Moved the cabinet into the paint booth for primer and guide coat.
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Tomorrows plan... Sand down the primer, paint Black base and clear.

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#36 20 days ago

WOW nice looking cab.

#37 20 days ago

Tried my patience getting it but well worth it. Things should move right along now.

#38 19 days ago

One hell of a DIY paint booth, nice work!

#39 19 days ago

Wish I had a more permanent paint booth but this will have to do for now.

#40 19 days ago

Nice job! Can't wait to see how it turns out.

#41 19 days ago
Quoted from timab2000:

Nice job! Can't wait to see how it turns out.

Thanks. The last thing is the cabinet and then I can start putting it all together. Hopefully it all goes smoothly.

#42 19 days ago
Quoted from Pin-Pilot:

Thanks. The last thing is the cabinet and then I can start putting it all together. Hopefully is all goes smoothly.

Just getting all my stuff together for my HS restoration and will be using this and many others as a guides. Great work. Do you have any complete parts lists generated that would be a time saver like lamp sockets especially.

#43 19 days ago
Quoted from eyeamred2u:

Just getting all my stuff together for my HS restoration and will be using this and many others as a guides. Great work. Do you have any complete parts lists generated that would be a time saver like lamp sockets especially.

Yes this forum is a fantastic resource for restoration. Several threads on HS restores.

I do not have a master list of parts I ordered. Kinda ordered as I went along. That is one of the most challenging parts of the whole process is there is not a 1 goto place for parts. Its like an easter egg hunt finding everything you need! LOL

Glad you are enjoying this thread.

Got the black laid down today. Got a couple runs so will need to sand before a clear coat is applied.

#44 19 days ago

Laid down the Black on the cabinet this afternoon. Came out pretty good. Had a couple runs so I will let it dry overnight, sand in the morning then clear it in preparation for the stencil colors.
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#45 18 days ago

Cabinet is coming along very well. Clear is laid on. Will smith out a little more as the paint dries. Let her sober up and smooth out a couple days then will start with the stencil process.

In case you are wondering what that green thing is... its a canoe suspended from the ceiling.
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2K Clear sure makes for a beautiful finish.

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So excited to get this restore completed
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#46 18 days ago


#47 18 days ago

I know, right. This 2K sure goes on like glass.

I tell you, I love everything about Pinball restoration except the painting. It is A LOT of work and $. I could do it a lot cheaper but I am going all out on this restore.

So far it's gone very smoothly. Had a couple runs in the base I had to sand out this morning then re-shoot. I got the runs I think because I thinned the black a little too much. Followed the manufacturer recommendations however when I used a little less thinner I was able to get it on a little thicker with no runs.

#48 18 days ago
Quoted from Pin-Pilot:

I love everything about Pinball restoration except the painting.

It's the worst.

#49 18 days ago
Quoted from Pin-Pilot:

Will smith out a little more as the paint dries

#50 18 days ago

This thing looks so good I don’t even want to finish my cabinet anymore

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