(Topic ID: 155578)

Hobbit Owners Thread

By Eryeal

5 years ago

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16 key posts have been marked in this topic, showing the first 10 items.

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Post #14 First impressions by new owner. Posted by Eryeal (5 years ago)

Post #45 The source of the voice call-outs Posted by Troz (5 years ago)

Post #71 Detailed game review Posted by Vyzer2 (5 years ago)

Post #128 Cosmetic issues from factory and customer service response. Posted by RichieWrench (5 years ago)

Post #214 review with detail and good set of pictures. Posted by Pimp77 (5 years ago)

Post #402 Backglass LED diffuser (tones cold white to a more neutral amber color) Posted by PanzerFreak (5 years ago)

Post #714 Another BackBox light filter Posted by Damonator (5 years ago)

Post #769 Rulesheet Posted by tiesmasc (5 years ago)

Post #1064 Owner fixes and tweaks after 150 games. Posted by pinballinreno (5 years ago)

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#105 5 years ago

I posted this on another thread, but it seems better placed here:

Hi All !
Just got my SE on Monday afternoon serial ending in 073. Smaug is still spelled smuag on the box stamp.
First off I want to thank Jack and Team at JJP for an amazing and beautiful game, there is really nothing like the look, quality and feel of these games.
The box was crushed and "popped" at the top, looks like someone strapped it too tightly near the top and it broke the packing tape.
I was a bit worried about water damage due to it shipped all the way to Reno during the rain and snow last week in the Midwest.
The driver from R&L was wonderfully helpful and patient, he suggested I inspect everything while he waited, so I did.
The open box let a lot of dust inside but otherwise no damage at all, the packaging was superb.
Moving it to my game room seemed heavier than the WOZ!
Setup was easy, I set the angle to 7°, leveled left to right with a torpedo level, checked for anything loose or bent, excellent quality over-all.
Game booted right up everything except the spider pop-up worked perfectly under the tests.
The spider was rubbing on the left side of the wooden hole. It looks like it is not centered in the hole properly, but there is only about a 1/16th" of space to play with. I'm going to have to remove it and elongate the bracket holes a tiny bit to get it to center properly. Running a drill bit through and side cutting the holes slightly is a simple fix for this.
I have seen this exact problem on a couple of the videos, (spider wont pop up).
The USB cable end connector fit very loosely on my USB stick, and would not register it for a back-up of the settings (my WOZ fits tightly) I did not have a spare handy so I pulled the cable from my WOZ, did the back-up and installed version 1.01 code. (I'm sure I have a suitable cable laying around for a replacement later).

The flippers were a little weak on factory settings, I couldn't get up the right ramp easily with the right flipper. I set them up higher by 4.
This was way too hard and the ball moved so fast it would fly off the wireforms. I lowered the settings by 2 and it seems perfect, I could probably lower it by 1 more.
I played 10 games and once the ball trough failed to deliver a ball so I increased its strength by 1 only. I also increased the right VUK by 1 only.
I also increased the upper left sling by 2 ( I think this one is just a matter of taste).
Let me say that the comments on being slow or floaty do not apply to this game at all.
My game is fast and crisp playing and FUN!
The pop-up monsters are amazing and FUN! The game is easy for the novice and deeply challenging for the experts!
To compare it to the WOZ is just impossible, they are 2 different and distinct accomplishments from JJP.

Again, this game is a winner hands down and will be a permanent fixture on my collection for years to come.

1 week later
#172 5 years ago

Is it only the orc pop-ups that trap the ball or does it get trapped in the pider and warg as well?

I'm wondering if its the shape of the figure. Maybe the figures need to be 10% larger to fill the hole more.

I had a ball trapped in each orc last night during a single game.

It wasnt too bad as I was having a terrible game, followed up by 1.4 million with no balls being trapped.

#173 5 years ago

Odd issue last night:

The "c" in lock wouldnt register at all, and it looked like the LED was burned out.

I raised the PF to check and found a group of the fine wires had worked themselves under the leaves of the switch.

Very simple repair. I just tied them up with a small nylon tie.

#175 5 years ago

The ball search will not dislodge a ball jammed onto the orc pop-up.
It ends up being tight enough that the coil cannot raise it.
I had to almost "dig" it out to free it up.

Maybe put a hat (I kinda like this or goggles (mad max anyone?) or horns on the orcs or something to keep the ball out of there.

It could be tested with a spare figure and some sheet metal screws or gobs of J-B Weld applied in various areas until it seems right and the ball pops out instead of into the hole.

Pehaps there is too much clearance between the top of the figure and the metal flap?
The figures are just round enough on their heads to allow a ball to rest there while the mech drops into the PF.

What about washers behind the orcs heads to bring them forward a little so that the ball wont go in too deeply?

#193 5 years ago

What are these "Hobbit™" upgrades?

I am very interested as are others.


1 week later
#200 5 years ago
Quoted from Goronic:

how did MM address a stuck ball?

Its kinda the same there are pictures posted in the stuck ball threads that show it.

There are fixes and upgrades in the works.

I got a message from Vic at JJP and it appears that we will have something very soon.

#205 5 years ago
Quoted from halpain24:

Looks like with two more power the VUK makes it now. but I had to turn the kickback all the way up to make it just above the M target on man.
I have something else I guess, looks like my spider and orc popups are showing malfunction in the test menu. Not sure why. They both seem to work in test, but I do notice in game the ORC seems to pop up and look like it registers its own hit maybe and goes back down. The spider doesn't do this but it still shows malfunction for some reason.

The mechs are rubbing slightly. try checking/adjusting the side to side level. Check it in like 4 locations up and down the PF.

These mechs "float" a bit in their weldments. Side to side level can be crucial if they sere set a little close to the sides at the factory.
As always they can be loosened a bit and slightly nudged or twisted mostly enough so they dont touch the PF wood.

#213 5 years ago
Quoted from Mike_J:

So even Hobbit at 9K must make do with a lowly translite?
I am surprised.

Im not sure what you're aiming at?

No, no trans-lite, It's Custom glass. I think the mirror treatment would be out of place on this game. JJP is certainly capable of it as seen on the WOZ, but again its glass with high quality artwork.

#232 5 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

How so? All I see are post after post complaining about how "wide open" and "empty" the PF on TH is.
Great review, by the way. Seemed pretty unbiased.

The PF gets quite crowded at times and is a blast to play.

#240 5 years ago
Quoted from Pimp77:

Forgot to mention, the shooter spring is weak. Too weak. A full plunge barely gets the A drop target. I'm going to go one spring strength up or stretch the current one out some.

I thought the same thing, I since changed my mind.
you need an incredibly weak spring to hit all the lock roll-overs in one sweep (I can do it 50% of the time now).
Also you need very precise control when trying to get the right in-lane targets.

If the shooter spring and PF pitch is correct, you will hit the "A" or "R" in dwarf on a full plunge, it is also strong enough to hit the left hole for the extra ball award.

#251 5 years ago
Quoted from Jvspin:

Regarding the Pop-ups. It looks like they implemented the ball trap fix on the game at PAGG. If I'm not mistaken they put a small plastic barrier on the front edge of the hole to prevent a ball from partially dropping in. Not sure how it was installed.
I don't think the machine had any trapped balls in the pop-ups after the fix.

Can anyone post pics of this?
Inquiring minds want to know how to get "The Fix"....

#275 5 years ago
Quoted from Skyemont:

I just ordered blades but not mirror. I will post pics once I get them. Should be next week.

Did you get these:


I was just looking at them and think they would be a great enhancment.

#277 5 years ago
Quoted from Skyemont:

Question for you guys. On my WPC/WPC95 games I can check to see if all sounds with speech work in test mode, can you do the same with TH?

I dont see anything in the menu's that plays the sound clips.

I just noticed that with the upgrade to 1.10 code, Im not hitting the ring button to start modes, it's happening automatically.

I think that this is an adjustment in the menu though, if I want it back, or double flip instead of the button?

#286 5 years ago

I think that's the switch that activates the ring save.

It activates more frequently if your pitch is at 7 degrees.

#315 5 years ago
Quoted from LTG:

Looks right.
I'd try reseating the memory sticks.
LTG : )

Memory slot failures have been the bane of many hardware manufacturers. Sony laptops have had this exact problem for years, random lockups etc.
Sometimes the fix is to get thicker modules, sometimes the fix is to use different ram.
I have had to work on this a lot in the past. Generally different ram that fits snugly fixes a memory slot problem for good.

The problem is diagnosing it, very difficult in an environment that changes temperature and is subject to vibration.

With the advent of SSD drives, and the Hard Disk also being RAM, one can also have a bad SSD and exhibit similar issues.
This happens especially if the OS caches to the drive and uses virtual memory.

So, Like Lloyd said, try re-seating or replacing the RAM or switch them around. Sometimes the RAM closest to the CPU doesnt like to get warmed up as much as the other one.

#342 5 years ago

As far as resets go, has anyone re-installed the 1.01 .iso and 1.10 patch? To see if its just a patching issue?

I am not having resets, I also have the top pop bumper turned down a notch from the other 2.

#343 5 years ago
Quoted from kpg:

Well it looks like I'll avoid updating to 1.10 when I get my machine next week. I'll wait for JJP to address the reset issues with it, disappointing as I really want to try the latest code.

Your game will most likely have the latest code on it, I would think.

#345 5 years ago
Quoted from Skyemont:

What do you have your pop bumpers set at?

The top one is down 1, the left is default, the right is up 1.
The top one was sending STDM too often so I turned it down 1 or 2.

Initially the ball was going back and forth between the left and top too much on my game.
Now it seems more random and not wearing a track between 2 of the pops.

#347 5 years ago
Quoted from Skyemont:

I noticed when I went into diagnostics screen, there were 4 errors. Those are the 4 resets I have had. I will turn down the pop bumpers and see what happens.

I also have the upper left sling up 1. It seems to keep momentum better during multiball.

#357 5 years ago
Quoted from Skyemont:

Just had my 6th reset. I'm done for now. Not playing until its fixed. I'm in the middle of a 700k game on ball 2 and it goes dead. Its just pissing me off at this time. I will just jump over to Monster Bash. Poor me.

Did you try swapping the ram front to back on the computer?

#359 5 years ago
Quoted from Skyemont:

No. Did you do this? If so, did it help?

It might help, I have had this technique solve instability many times. The ram near the cpu gets hotter than the one behind. Some ram is more sensitive to heat than others, this doesn't mean its bad per se.

Switching ram around has been a quick fix for some time now.

Heat differences between the ram sticks can cause differences in the way data runs around the internal pathways. This can cause instability

Hence "heat spreaders" on some high speed ram.

In most cases switching the ram locations, replacing the ram, or using a different brand/vendor for the ram fixes this instability problem.

I like "samsung original" and micron ram. They seem to be the most stable and the lowest defect per million sold.

#362 5 years ago
Quoted from LTG:

For anyone that wants to know. I was having lots of issues since the recent update. Slowing down, stopping, lots of resets. I ran it by Keith. He said to make sure I had 8 GB total RAM in my game. I only had one 4 GB memory stick.
I didn't want to wait for JJP to send me one. So I went and got two of these :
I wanted a matched pair in there with cooling fins.
My game has been rock solid ever since.
LTG : )

Crucial ram is one of the better vendors, they use micron ram on their modules. I also like their metal heat spreaders, they look cool
The matched set is Excellent for bullet proofing memory instability.

The Ballistix™ ram is very durable (overclocker grade/gamer ram) and I think an excellent choice for a pinball game.

And its cheap, I have some here, I may put them in just for the durability factor.

The reviews on newegg on this ram are pretty good:


#365 5 years ago

I would use the 2 4gb sticks. It balances out the mainboard and draws less power per slot.

#377 5 years ago
Quoted from Skyemont:

I will pick up new 4gig ram tonight. But my question is, shouldn't Jack fix those who have this ram and have not shipped? Stop using the ram installed if it's doing this.

I have built 50-100 computers at a time for bigger network jobs. All exactly the same, all from the same batches of components, serial numbers sequential from the assembly lines etc...

Ram that wouldnt post in one machine worked perfectly in another and was stable years later under 24hr a day operation.
JJP is doing thousands of these PC's. There will be variations no matter how careful you are.

Machine oil on contacts, slightly less spring tension in the memory slots, finger prints on contacts, variations in module thickness, too loose or to tight on connectors...anything can and will happen.

Even though computers are electronic, they are mechanical in their construction and variations occur.

#379 5 years ago
Quoted from Skyemont:

Lloyd. Can u tell us the specks we need for the ram? The voltage, timings, etc. not just any ram will work. I'm going to bestbuy after work and I want to get exactly what I need.

If you are going to best buy:


This is a 2 stick kit and is very good RAM, 1600 speed and CL-9, exactly what you might need, if you want to try new RAM.

call them and see if they have it.

#383 5 years ago
Quoted from pcprogrammer:

I can vouch for Crucial RAM. I have built 300 to 400 desktop computers in my life. Out of all the manufacturers my top 2 are Crucial and Kingston. I have had the least problems with Crucial. I have had the most problems with G.Skill and Corsair. Crucial RAM is the best, you can't go wrong trust me.

Kingston RAM I think has the best compatability. They can use micron or samsung RAM on their modules, they also sell value ram but its a crap shoot as to what you might get.

Crucial uses micron RAM chips. They are made in the USA. Micron has the lowest defect per million in the industry going back decades.
Samsung is right on their tail though.

There are many companies making pc boards for installing RAM chips on to, calling it their own. One company may have the same ram stick serial number but many different ram chips they use.

I have even had 2 exact sticks of ram with 2 different ram manufacturers. I call this junk ram, and it leads to instability. PNY comes to mind.

#411 5 years ago
Quoted from kpg:

One problem - which i'll find out the extent of it though, is I had a reset on it while my wife was having a kick ass game. The code out of the box is 1.01 and I didn't have a chance to update it, but I don't remember reading about anyone have reset issues with that code version. The game wasn't running long enough to get hot, and my area was nice and chilly so that shouldn't be the problem. I guess i'll have to reach out to JJP and join the queue of people with reset issues unfortunately. Besides that, everything else is fine. Just not cool knowing I could be having a bad ass game and it can reset spontaneously.

Looks like a RAM timing problem, could be from the chaotic nature of all the solenoids upsetting the wall power. I dunno!
Ive seen similar behavior on highly overclocked computers without line conditioners or UPS to help reduce DC ripple due to unregulated AC wall power.

If the RAM is in dimm slots 1 and 3, try putting them in dimm slot 2 and 4. this might get you a couple pico-seconds to stabilize some issues in data flow. Or its just weak springs in the sockets...(the bane of Sony for years)?

If the problem persists, try a more agressive faster responding (overclocker/gaming) RAM like crucial vengeance or ballistix RAM. These tend to be a little thicker modules also.

This may well be a coding problem, but I think its a combination of coding/environment/vibration.
Since not all games exhibit this behavior.

DDR3 1600 CL-9 is the RAM speed of the computer.

#413 5 years ago

So, Super Bands™ or Perfect Play™ bands for The Hobbit™?

I'm thinking of Super Bands™...

#452 5 years ago
Quoted from WackyBrakke:

Sure is a pretty game, I'll have to try playing one that works

Well, this is an "Owners" thread you are on.
Maybe there is an owner near you, that has tweaked the game for the best play, for you to see. I would pursue that maybe other than a poorly setup location game. It seems that location games are always hit or miss as far as setup, regardles of the manufacturer.
Especially near me.

#458 5 years ago
Quoted from PanzerFreak:

My Hobbit LE has been delivered! The shipping box was scuffed up in a few spots but no holes in the box so that's good. Charging Escalera now to move it into my basement tonight with the help from a friend, haha

Congrats on getting the game before the weekend! Might have to jumper the escalera battery mid-stairway, this game is a BEAST!
I just cant stop playing mine, I'm so hooked

#461 5 years ago

Early adopters (like myself) = Lab Rats

Sometimes, but its been fun and exciting none-the-less.

#467 5 years ago
Quoted from Jvspin:

I permanently fixed the left habitrail bounce-out problem by taking a rounded file to the last two cross bars so the ball no longer hits them. Curious if the people who have installed a post still get the occasional bounce-out into or over the inlane?
I had previously bent the end loop up slightly and that eliminated a large % of bounce-outs but not all of them.
Not sure that I can recommend the fix as it is not reversible and JJP will probably come up with a solution. However, I'm not anticipating selling the game any time soon and I don't think it's noticeable unless pointed out.

I also spread the ends of the wire-form about 1/8" more to get the ball to "drop" a tiny bit before going through the loop, that I also bent up about 3/16"

I have not put the peg along the left side as others have. My game seems to have settled down at 200 plays

#468 5 years ago
Quoted from Goronic:

I want to order an extra set on pinballs as well. Which are the preferred for WoZ and TH?

I just use the bulk ones from Marco Spec they are nicely oiled (you have to clean them but there is no rust, I like the little tubes of 5, they dont roll around in my tool box) I run them in the tumbler for a few hours and wax them before putting them into my games.

I have also used pinball life balls, there doesnt seem to be any difference to me.

#471 5 years ago
Quoted from Jvspin:

You can see in the photo my habitrail veers to the right at the first cross bar. I tried to accentuate the problem by manually giving the ball a little extra speed when testing. Sometimes it would hit the first cross bar and go off track heading towards the left where people are putting a post. Sometimes it would hit the second cross bar then bounce off the end loop and go various places.

When I first started my game the wireform was tilted towards the wall by 1/8". The ball always fell and stuck at the bottom over the screw head or climbed the loop and missed the kickback.

I had to work on that wire-form a lot. I have twisted it a bit so that its slightly angled down away from the wall in the upper portion, then goes level and then very slightly angled away from the wall in the lower section.

Its easiest to twist the wire-form with a rag and a crescent wrench adjusted snugly that crosses both wires.

If I have the flipper power too high (28+) the ball will still fly over the loop.

I might do as you did and dent a valley in the cross braces on my bench vise anvil.

Although so far it seems fixed.

#473 5 years ago
Quoted from Jvspin:

If you bend it the rails will get closer together. I think this might be more noticeable than using a file to form the valleys. It didn't take long and I put a cloth under the rail to catch the filings.

I think it only takes about 1/64th to 1/32" more clearance to be safe, on my game the ball barely grazes it. You can tell it hits though as it bumps along twice on the way to the kickback and looks as though it may drop off.

#479 5 years ago
Quoted from kpg:

What if you trimmed down a post rubber, and put it on the end of the wireform hole?

I thought about this or maybe a single layer of silk tape.

#488 5 years ago
Quoted from Peppers:

My Hobbit SE #960 has finally left Jersey Jack and heading to my lonely mountain. I hope to get it in a week. Pic is Smaug's new home as seen from our bedroom. I think I am one of the last of day one orders. But at one point I asked mine to be delayed as we were moving to our new place. I am beyond excited!!!!! A huge thanks to Everyone at JJ and especially LTG for taking care of us.

What a beautiful view you have!
I know you are going to love your new game, with all the testing and tweaking done on this thread you should be able to have it dialed in, in no time.

#502 5 years ago
Quoted from PanzerFreak:

A few items I need to adjust out of the box.
1. Plunger spring is too weak to reach the "dwarf" drop targets. Going to replace.
2. Rollovers seem too be up to high and may be causing some of the airballs. Will lower.
3. Setting the game to a 7 degree pitch resulted in the ball falling off of the far left habit rail often. I set it back to the recommended 6.5 degree setting.
Items that need to be corrected through code.
1. Shaker motor is making a bit of a squeaking sound. Others have reported this since updating to version 1.10.
Stuck balls at far left habit rail and pop ups?
I haven't seen a ball get stuck at the far left habit rail. I did have one ball get stuck in a pop up as it was coming down but a few seconds later it came out.
Update tips
1. I originally downloaded the 1.10 update file, unzipped it to my hard drive and copied it over to the my thumb drive. When attempting to update the game I got a "no update folder found" error. Turns out if you unzip the file directly to your USB thumb drive (root, nothing else on it) it will have a different folder name "hobbit_update" versus "TheHobbit_Delta_v1.10" if you unzip it to a local drive (I'm running Windows 10 btw). I'm not sure why the folder name changes based on if it's extracted to a USB thumb drive or to a local HD drive but in order for me to get the update to work I had to unzip the file from my local hard drive to the USB thumb drive.

I thought the plunger spring was too weak also, but me and everyone else has backtracked off this idea.
You might just have a bad spring.
Check that the plunger hits the center of the ball and there are no obstructions, adjust if necessary.
A bent plunger will also cause weak plunges.
Some have reported that a little dry lube on the plunger rod helps a lot, Teflon or silicone dry spray lube, due to the fact you want it to be super weak but controllable.

The spring has to be incredibly weak to make all the skill shots.
A proper spring gently hits the a or r in dwarf depending on the playfield pitch. A super careful shot will also hit the left hole. An extremely gentle pull will hit the right outlane for big points.

Push the flipper rubbers higher on the bats to combat airballs.

The game fresh out of the box is very fast, balls go everywhere.
At about 50 plays it will settle down, this is where all the tweaks come in e.g. 7 degree pitch flippers at 25 or 26.

Check the roll overs with a ball, just let it roll down on them from just before the ramps. They should compress and be a tiny bit above the surface of the playfield to avoid clearcoat chipping. They will soften out in a few plays.

A lot of us have been sorting out the left wire-form. I have tweaked mine a lot and it works perfectly now. I do think they should re-design it to allow for faster game play. The same holds true for the right wire-form and the ramps themselves. If you raise the flipper power to 29-32 the ball will launch over the ramps and hit the backboard, and never stay on the wire-forms.

Opening the loop and bending it up on the left wireform fixes some things. Adding a post at the lower attachment screw fixes other things. Warping and adjusting or in some cases carving the wireform itself has been very effective to get it just right.

Put the shaker on high for awhile extreme is not necessary. You can oil the shaft on the shaker but I wouldn't do that, I would just let it break in for a hundred games or so and it should get better. If it gets worse JJP will send you a new one.

Setting the playfield pitch to 7 degrees seems about perfect after about 50 plays, after the game has settled down a bit.

A full plunge hits the the A or R in dwarf the kickback flows the ball up the right guide towards the pops and rolls back smoothly.

A higher pitch makes the kickback bounce off the rubber instead of going up the guide, this is fun but a little too random for me.

#508 5 years ago
Quoted from Jvspin:

Very good summary pinballinreno.
The only addition I would make is to add a little teflon lube to the shooter rod if the ball is not making it to the drop targets.

Oh! I forgot about that, thx. I just editted that in.

#510 5 years ago
Quoted from kpg:

Ok guys!!! I have perfectly dialed in my Hobbit LE. Today, the changes I made turned this game into a blazing fast pin. I had to actually turn the flipper power down 3-4 notches because of the airballs this caused.
I did the following:
1) Waxed playfield with a different wax this time, Mill Wax playfield wax & cleaner- let it dry and then buffed it out
2) Pinball Life Oh Shiny balls
3) Super band rubbers
4) Flippers at 24 left, 27 right power
I cannot believe the difference after those 3 things. Everything moves so quickly, theres little to no floatiness, and power must be turned down on flippers! This should be a mandatory thing to do after pulling it out of the box.
This, with 7* pitch - wireform post on left side, and bending loop on left wireform upwards to prevent hop overs, has made this thing awesome. Anyone with speed complaints must try this pin with those fixes/changes/upgrades because its a world of a difference.
Also, for the plunger- I did use some silicone spray on the shaft and its much smoother and plunges the ball way better- no spring change necessary.

I have used Mill Wax before on older playfields, it worked pretty good at the time. Doesnt last too long but was cheap and fast to apply.

Im not to concerned about silicones in the clearcoat they can be washed out with some of the newer cleaners mostly and a fish-eye additive to re-clear later on if needed.

Newer clearcoat waxes are pretty good on modern playfields.

Carnauba wax is as hard as concrete after all the petroleum distillations evaporate out of it. Some guys use a hair dryer after the wax job is done to dry it out, like at an indoor car show. Its used on cars because of this hardness but, cars cook in the sun all day, pinball machines do not, so the issue is getting it to cure or dry out. I use the hair dryer method if Im in a hurry.

I like the grand 1000, but its hard to get and leaves white dust that you have to vacuum up or wipe off.

Right now I like P21s wax, I use it on my car its really good stuff it doesnt leave any white residue, maybe a haze if you miss a spot
the thinnest coat is all you need, but its spendy. I really like it a lot and it lasts a long time. I let it cure a day or so before playing on it.
Im not putting it on plastic ramps, metal ones and wireforms should be ok, but I havent tried yet....Kpg has me thinking now...

amazon.com link »

#512 5 years ago
Quoted from Jvspin:

Wizards Mist and Shine is what JJP recommended for WOZ. I expect it would be the same with the Hobbit. Not sure how it compares to other stuff people are using.
amazon.com link »

I use this for between waxings its really good stuff! And sparkle glass cleaner wont remove the coating on the glass, and novus 1 to clean the plastics. All with micofiber cloths they are cheap and can be washed and dried but dont use dryer sheets or fabric softeners on them.

I just recently waxed my Hobbit™ at 250 plays with the p21s wax.

#523 5 years ago
Quoted from kpg:

What is wrong with it and what are the reasons you wouldn't want a game thats had it on there? I guess I don't understand what the big deal is. Enlighten me please, I'm listening

Mill wax is fast playing but too soft to do any protrection.

If you are trying to protect the surface you need a hard wax that will hold up to metal balls running all over it.

If you are wanting it to be fast, pledge works great, but might yellow the clearcoat or crack it in time and only last like 5 games.

Carnauba wax is ideal for what we want over all.

Johnsons, meguires, turtle wax etc have carnauba wax in them but a lower concentration per applicstion. They can be mostly water and petroleum, there by being less expensive. Especially liquid waxes.

If you buy carnauba wax it should smell like a candle and not smell too chemcally. Then you know you are getting more wax for your money.

Liquid waxes dont put down enough wax per application to do what we want without waxing it every day.

Again, I like grand 1000 and P21S they have pretty much the most wax per application you can buy.

All carnauba has petroleum distillates in it to melt the wax for application. Otherwise you would have to heat it up to liquefy it and pour it on.

So this is not an issue.

Some cheap waxes can melt the plastics due to cheap petroleum in them.

#525 5 years ago
Quoted from Hitch9:

Go to 'cleaning and waxing pinball playfields- Vid's guide'.
Everything you wanted to know about waxes and what not to use. It's enlightening.
Bottom line- stay away from milwax.

Wildcat 125, CP100 and millwax were the standard decades ago and recommended by Bally™.

Things have changed a lot since then.

Its not so much about making money and throwing away the pin when it stops performing, its about preservation since they cost a lot now.

#529 5 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

I know that it is common for people in this hobby to use Novus 1 for regular cleaning of their playfield, but I really don't understand why. I mean I don't think it will hurt your pf or anything, but why use a product that was made for plastic on a PF?
For regular cleaning of your PF and an easy way to reinforce your wax by providing a small amount of extra protection (instead of using a cleaner that could actually remove your wax) I have long recommended (and use) Optimum's Opti-Clean. I use it every time I take the glass off. Note that this is not for heavy duty cleaning of a very dirty PF. It's for maintenance type of cleaning.
amazon.com link »

Again, another product that tons of Pinsiders love to use is the Blitz One Grand. I don't like it for the very reasons that you state: it leaves white dust and it also easily accumulates in areas such as star posts. I recently purchased a pin from a good friend who uses Blitz. I had to use a toothbrush to remove some of the white buildup in the star posts.
While I agree completely that P21S is a great wax and won't leave white residue or buildup behind, I don't think you really need to spend that kind of money on a high end wax to get the results we want on a pin.
Collinite's 845 Insulator wax can be purchased for half the price of the P21S, will probably provide even better protection, and will not leave white dust or buildup in the star posts if used correctly (i.e, do not apply much at all). 845 wipes away completely clean. It also provides one of the slickest surfaces of any of the waxes, so it can make the PF very fast. This can actually be considered a drawback. The difference in ball speed is significant.
amazon.com link »

Thanks for the tip Collinite's 845 Insulator wax looks like it might weather better on my Porsche (as if it has ever seen rain!)
Liquid waxes are generally easier to apply than paste waxes. You can get them on thinner, and thinner is better.

When I run out of P21S Ill give it a try!

#530 5 years ago
Quoted from kpg:

What if you used a good quality carnauba, then put some Millwax on top for the speed benefits?

Mill wax will probably remove the carnauba

#536 5 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

Exactly right.
Edit: other than your spelling of "carnauba."

Thanks RobT all fixed now!

#537 5 years ago
Quoted from BoozeMarlin:

Great stuff! We use this on our sportfish boat's aluminum tuna tower, etc. Easy on/Easy off and does a great job of cleaning and protecting from pitting due to saltwater. Pretty much everyone in the marine industry uses it for towers. If it's good enough for those it should do well on playfields. Imagine it could be used on habitrails, ramps, or any other metal parts on a pin that need cleaning.

I was thinking the same thing and just ordered some. (Thanks again RobT).

#542 5 years ago
Quoted from bonanza:

Correct me if I am wrong but my understanding is that you should never use ammonia based cleaners on Invisaglass (like windex) but can use vinegar based cleaners (like windex multipurpose ammonia free cleaner).

Sparkle glass cleaner is really good if you can get it near you. Ace Hardware has it by the gallon here.

#547 5 years ago
Quoted from PanzerFreak:

Thanks for the tips and suggestions! Yeah, I think my game has a bad plunger spring. I ordered a "purple" rated one off of Pinball Life for a $1 along with some Perfect Play flipper bands. I definitely need to adjust the rollovers down or maybe just need to give them more time to settle as they noticeable alter the balls movement when going over them. Good tip on raising the flipper bands, I'm hoping the Perfect Play silicone bands on ordered reduce the airballs.
The only other thing I really need to figure out at the moment is how to the ball from popping out of the far left wireform. I wonder if JJP could prevent the pop outs if they let the magnet divertor hold onto the ball longer when it shifts habit rails? I tried bending the end up a bit more but it may not be enough. One tip I read on the JJP Google group to prevent pop outs is to put a spacer under the screw of the far left habit rail to raise its height as that ends of slowing the ball down a bit.

The plunger has to work with a super weak spring.

Again, check that the plunger hits squarely in the center of the ball, check the tip rubber also.
Put some dry lubricant on the plunger shaft.
Check for any binding in the shaft or the housing.
Check the plastic housing sleeve for binding.
Spin the plunger around several times while carefully seeing if its bent.
Maybe the shaft itself is too fat and need to be replaced.
Maybe the PF sits too high and is dragging on the tip rubber.

My WOZ needed to be adjusted NIB. It was easy just loosen the nuts on the shooter housing and move into the correct position, auto-plunger was fine but the regular plunger wouldn't make it to the lane change even. it was too high.

On the left wire-form:

I had to see the left wire-form in action in order to make any corrections. I took about 50 ramp shots and cell phone video to make an assessment.

I also repeatedly rolled 5 balls at a time onto the wire-form and plugged the end with a ball of paper towel, so I could see from the "train" of balls what their true action was.

In my case I had to bank the wire-form in places to compensate for lateral forces in order to keep the ball centered.
I also banked the wire-form, down away from the wall just slightly from level, on the last 8 inches before the loop.

Lastly I bent the loop up 1/4" and opened the loop 1/8" from the bottom of it with pliers. Opening the bottom of the loop causes the ball to drop slightly and "duck" under the loop. This will keep the ball from climbing the wire.

Since then I have raised my flipper power to 27-28 and the ball stays on the wire-form.

2 crescent wrenches and a rag works pretty good for tweaking wire-forms.

On my NIB WOZ the ball wouldn't make it over the cross-over, without dropping out and going STDM, and flew out of the crystal ball VUK wire-form. Easily fixed with some patience and a little bending/tweaking.

#580 5 years ago

250 play update:

Lower PF was waxed with P21S.
Hard to reach areas washed with Mist & Shine and buffed off with dry MF cloth.
All armoured surfaces waxed with P21S along with wireforms. Metal ramps lightly waxed with P21S.
Plastics and ramps cleaned with novus 1, ramps finished with mist and shine.
Inner drop targets cleaned with sparkle and novus 1.
All other stuff cleaned with a dampened microfiber cloth.

Everything seems like brand new again (which it is essentially).

The inner dwarf targets are getting bent back especially the f.
I bent them back but bent targets are the source of tons of air-balls. I'm hoping for a longer term solution for the "bent drop target" problem like maybe tilting the whole mech down slightly.

I switched the flipper rubber to green Pinball life super-bands™ on all 3 flippers. It seems to play better, more accurate. I can make the hole shots more frequently now.

I had to drop the flipper power a couple nothches after waxing and was getting air-balls stuck on the right side behind the spotlight. The cause was the wire to the spotlight on the hex post, needed to be re-routed to the front of the light and the wire ties moved up to the top.
Now the ball will move past the post without getting hung there.

All in all the game plays better than new after settling a bit.
My scores are getting above a million frequently.

I have also settled on the right flipper being set I notch higher than the left at 26 and 27 respectively.

1 week later
#610 5 years ago
Quoted from Pimp77:

One in maybe 100 right habitrail returns will drop the ball and spin it up and out the right outlane. It is FRUSTRATING when it happens and screws us enough to need to find a way to fix it. Anybody else experience this one?

I bent the upper loop up about 1/4" maybe less and bent/raised the lower loop about 1/16"
This seems to slow the ball and allow it to go thru better. A spacer there might also help but I havent tried it.

#614 5 years ago

It looks like quite a bit of stress was applied to at least one of the wires.
I would check the continuity of the wires by stripping it and twisting them back together and temporarily taping them. Then check the wires using an ohmmeter or other type of tester.
If you dont have an ohmmeter, start the game and see if everything works correctly.
If everything seems ok, then use the instructions posted above to do a permanent repair.

#619 5 years ago
Quoted from GameJunkie:

Got my Hobbit 3 days ago and i'm loving it! A few questions to you owners.
1. The legs are quite a bit shorter than WOZ more like the height of a Stern. Anyone know why JJP went with shorter legs and therefore a lower table height?
2. Are some of story book modes not completable yet? I feel like I have hit all the targets they ask for and still have time in the mode, but it ends and I don't get a complete bonus. In fact I don't think I have completed any modes yet.
3. Sometimes, especially when I lock a ball, the audio pops and crackles. Is this just a product of early code or do you think i have a connection issue. I did make sure all of the audio connections under the play field were tight. I have not looked in the back box yet. My sub woofer sounded like it was blown, but I did fix that by securing the connection.
4. Just an observation, but I think it's strange that they chose to face the Dwarf or Hobbit in the barrel looking to the back of the machine. I feel like we should be able to see his face.
5. Anyone see any cool mods for the play field yet. I feel like the mod community is a little slow with mods for Hobbit. There are already tons of Ghost Busters and I feel like WOZ had quite a few at this point.
Hope everyone is enjoying their Hobbit or gets it soon if they are waiting.

1. My WOZ legs are exactly the same height as the Hobbit™

2. Code updates will cover all of this.

#627 5 years ago
Quoted from GameJunkie:

My legs on my Hobbit are 2" shorter than my WOZ. My WOZ legs are 30.5" and my Hobbit 28.5 inches not including levelers.
So witch legs are off? Can someone check theirs?

That is indeed a mystery:

Did you get some Data East legs on your WOZ?!?!?!? Maybe your distributer made an error?

Pinball legs have changed sizes a lot over the years.
Not only the length can be different. There are also differences in types and colors. Flat or ribbed (whole length or partly). Chrome, black or painted grey.

•27 inch = 68.5cm
•28.5 inch = 72cm
•30.5 inch = 77.5 cm
•31 inch = 78.8cm

Data East / Sega / Stern : Data East started with chrome 28.5 inch but switched soon to black of the same length. Later black 30.5 inch.

Williams Pinball 2000 (1999 - 2000): black ribbed, 28.5 inch.

Williams / Bally system11 and WPC (1987 - 1998) : chrome ribbed, 28.5 inch.
Exception are the first generation Bally games (1988-1990) which had grey and sometimes black (like Black Rose).
Road Show had blue, and gold legs were installed on Indiana Jones, World Cup Soccer, Judge Dredd and Addams Family Gold.
Corvette and ST:TNG had black, and some CFTBL too.
Twilight Zone used regular chrome. But because the game is so heavy, during development Williams had tested with legs with 3 leg bolts. Games weren't shipped with them, but the cabinet does have 3 holes. Take care when setting it up on legs that you use the correct two, or the playfield will be much steeper than it needs to be.

Williams 1966 - 1987: flat chrome, 27 inch, later ribbed until half.

Bally 1984 - 1987 : ribbed chrome, 28.5 inch.

Bally 1968 - 1983 : flat dark grey, 28.5 inch.

Gottlieb DMD (1990 - 1995): started with 27 inch chrome, later 31 inch chrome.

Gottlieb system 1 / sys80 : standard 27 inch, flat chrome.
Exception is Haunted House, 27 inch in front and 31 inch in the back.

Gottlieb electromechanical 1 player (50ies to mid 70) : 31 inch flat chrome.

Stern 1977-1985 : 28.5 inch, flat chrome.

Zaccaria : 28.5 inch, flat chrome.

JJP : 28.5 inch, powder coated in colors, or flat chrome (same as late model Williams or Stern legs)

(reposted from flippers.be)

PM or ask Lloyd WTF?

#647 5 years ago
Quoted from flipnout1:

I had it set for 6.5 degrees.

6.5 is too low.
The ball will hover above the flippers too much (floating) and hang in weird areas due to low inertia.
Play a few games at 6.85 dergrees you will see its almost perfect.
Over 7 degrees and the ball will not travel up the pop area ball guide properly during kick-backs.

#716 5 years ago
Quoted from Pimp77:

I'm going to have to do that one of these days. Looks way better.

Its easy and cheap to get, and takes like 3 mins to install:


Or get it from Amazon.

#734 5 years ago

My DWARF target assembly fell down last night.
The 2 screws on the left side had backed out and were waiting for me, together, on top of the computer.
I have about 400 plays on it.

So, next time you lift the PF, check the tightness of these screws. The aggressive motion leads to looseness I guess. I was thinking that they might have used a T-nut and blue locktite on this maybe in production.

I glued them in with titebond 3 and toothepick ends. They are tight now and as with flipper baseplate screws gluing them will help a lot.

#736 5 years ago
Quoted from freddy:

my buddies game the screws and plate fell of the ork pop up.(the upper right pop up) the two screws and plate that hold the head! jack wheres the Loc-tite?

Anything that comes loose on metal parts, I reassemble with blue locktite.

#744 5 years ago
Quoted from fordtudoor:

As I anticipate the arrival of my game I have kept abreast of all the Hobbit-related postings. With all the comments made about loose connections I would recommend that once you get these connectors working properly is to put a dab of silicone on the external surface of the connector and have it touch the receptor. This should hold it securely seated and protect against vibrations yet still allow it to be removed, if need be. At least that is what I plan to do.

Flakey connectors at best should be replaced (push the pins out etc and get new connector housings, squeeze the female pins a little when they are out). In a pinch one can nylon strap with a tie to secure them more tightly together.

Over-all this has not been a big issue with these games, but an issue in all devices that use these types of connectors e.g. cars, computers etc.

#761 5 years ago

Into the Fire™...OMG !!!! (screamed like a little girl...)

#763 5 years ago
Quoted from Manic:

Isn't that an old Dokken song?

ROCKIN' with Dokken !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

DO YOU WANNA ROCK ! DO YOU WANNA ROOOOOOOOOOOCK ! (yelled with a slightly inebriated British accent......)

#764 5 years ago

Or Thirteen Senses...

Dokken seems more fitting somehow...

#766 5 years ago
Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

Game was set on five ball, but wanted to post score anyways. Defeated into the fire and defeated smug mb. Multiballs were crazy fun. I was near 1.1M after ball three. Thinking this might be my only chance at glory, I kept playing.
AC repairman rang doorbell during my last ball and he had to wait seven minutes for me to end ball and answer door.
I was a worried about low scoring in 1.10 code, as you couldn't regularly crack 1M. Was hoping once main modes went in, you'd see rapidly growing scores. With into the fire being the first one in, my scores went up a good bit already and it was very fun playing. So now I am sure that once other modes are added in, the game will only get better. I think it is pretty darn good already.

How do you defeat Smaug™ and Into the Fire™ ?

I got got 4 Smaug™ multiballs and Into the Fire™ twice last night in a single game ! Posted a respectable 2.6mil....

#768 5 years ago
Quoted from Pimp77:

You do all the tasks...there are ends to them and victory laps.

I see !

Has anyone posted a list of things to do in the multiball in order to complete it? (I might have missed it...)

#771 5 years ago
Quoted from Manic:

Damn that is a lot to have to do. I remember the old time mutiballs... they had really only one rule "keep balls in play". lol

Yes, Smaug™ is a dragon, very tough to kill

#830 5 years ago
Quoted from Vyzer2:

I love the game, truly do....but, I am finding it draining balls on the cheap way too much. The roll overs and the lids to the pop ups change the direction of the ball significantly, and for my game, drains down the middle way too many times. I'm set up at 6.7, wondering if I should go to 7.

At least 6.8, more like 6.8 plus a bit. Go ahead and go to 7 and drop it back a bit if its too fast for the wireforms to hold the ball.
Adjust flipper power proprotianate to the pitch. Make the right flipper 1 notch more power than the left.

#867 5 years ago

No out of box errors on mine, just minor adjustments.

#875 5 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

I love this pin!

Great score!

did you get the gel for the backbox LED's?
It makes the backbox match the display colors.

#878 5 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

Yep, I added the filter this weekend.
I need to make some adjustments on it though. It's actually a bit too warm overall. Nimblepin had a great idea about staggering the gel so some of the LEDs won't be covered. I'm going to try to make the LEDs behind the bluer portions of the backbox not be covered with the filter.

I ended up using 2 layers of 1/4 CTO, it looks different than the 1/2 and yeah you can move the strips around a bit this way.

On the missing leg bracket screws, I have installed them on other games using a long magnetic extension on my screw gun, now that you have it up on its legs.

#894 5 years ago
Quoted from fordtudoor:

Before I set my game up (not here yet but a Dec. 13, 2012 order date) I plan to re-read all postings on all the "Hobbit" threads. There are a lot of suggestions and nit-picky problems scattered throughout these threads. Like the leg bolt plates not being secured, connectors not fully seated, assemblies not tightly screwed on the underside of playfield, or the bracket/screw head sticking up when you slide out the playfield glass. I think it would be worthwhile to spend some time while waiting and re-read and jot them down. Owners were kind enough to say "don't do like me and ...." They are helping the rest of us avoid similar mistakes.

Missing leg bracket screws? Wow, Id hate to be the guy on the line hearing about this...
Yes, the oddest one I think is the ring switch bracket scratching the glass. On my earlier game the bracket was hammered flat on the top and is clearly 1/8" lower than the glass. I guess they skipped this step on a few games.

Other than that its been mostly loose connectors from shipping I think.

#905 5 years ago

I think I have solved the ball spin-out problem when it drops down thru the wireform loops. It actually happens on both the left and (mostly) the right. I have still had this happen even though I put a rubber on the wire guide.

I was watching the ball carefully (no beer in me at all) while it dropped out of the loop.
The ball doesnt always spin out of the lane, defying gravity all the way into the golum lane and drain, every time. Only once in awhile and at the worst possible time. A fast running ball can have a huge spin on it.

If everything goes well, on a regular shot, the ball rolls down the wireform and rolls down the loop, bounces a little and then goes down the lane.

However if the ball rapidly circumscribes the ring before dropping, this puts a spin/rotation on the ball that makes it roll up and out of the lane.

My wireform "double" loops were not parallell to the PF. In fact they were hanging a bit low in the downhill side by about 3 degrees.
This angle made it easier for the ball to spin out of the lane as it was more in line the the balls rotation.

In order to counter the spin on the ball one must convert it to a lateral spin instead of an uphill spin, you have to bend the loop up a bit.

The goal is to have the "double" loop bent upward on the downhill side in relation to the PF angle.

The problem was how to do it easily without applying too much pressure on the form and ripping out any mounting screws, as you have to bend it at least 1/4"to 5/16" especially if the bend was negative (like mine) when you started.

I ended up hooking a 3/8 (or bigger) nut driver inside the lower "double" loop with the handle over the wireform side, pressing carefully until the nut driver handle was basically resting in upper part of the wireform itself. The bending of the double loop didnt break the welds or harm it as far as I can see, as I was being careful.

I actually did this on both the left and the right sides.

The upper single loop can also be bent up so that it matches cosmetically but its not really neccessary. (I just wedged a big screwdriver in and bent it up a bit so it looked level).

Kpg has mentioned in this thread that you can put a rubber on the wireguide in the lane. This actually works as it will brake the spin of the ball when it hits it, but for me it blocks the lane a bit, and its hard to get a tiny rubber that fits properly.

If the loop is bent up enough the problem is solved forever, as the ball spin will be lateral now instead of uphill.

I hope this helps anyone else with this problem. As always your milage may vary, its pinball.

#908 5 years ago
Quoted from Pimp77:

I'll have to do this as I get the spin out the drain every so often. Extremely angering when it happens.

Its designed to happen on the last ball of a killer multiball deep into the game, when you are just about to crack your highest score.

#910 5 years ago
Quoted from Eskaybee:

Watch out everyone, STLE Stern defender in the house On the newest code, my STLE kickback has probably failed once...maybe twice in about 500 games that i owned it. I'd say thats pretty acceptable.
P.S -
Cant wait to play your hobbit. Hoping my budget can fit one in my lineup in the near future ...but the dead are calling me too. Dam this hobby!

I hope you become an "Owner" some day! TH is an awsome game and this "Owners" thread has helped get the kinks out of this new technology that JJP has offered us. So far its been an amazing experience many thanks to all of the "Owners" who have contributed.

Im happy that you love your STLE.

#932 5 years ago
Quoted from konghusker:

So jjp is sending me the pop up mylar. Question as I've never installed mylar. I've read somewhere to wax playfield before installing mylar. Is that correct, and does mylar instantly stick or can I adjust if needed easily?

Mylar will get dirty in time and people want to replace it with new during a full shop job.
Waxing before you apply the Mylar makes it easier to remove without damaging the playfield.

The adhesive on most Mylar brands is pretty aggressive and will stick perfectly even if you wax below it.
Just make sure the wax is buffed and there are no white granules left on the surface to make bubbles.

#934 5 years ago
Quoted from markmon:

Is anyone else having troll flap problems? Every few games one of the troll flaps gets stuck up and the glass has to come off to pressure back down. Usually occurs if a ball gets stuck in troll when its dropping. After the ball search runs, the troll flap is stuck about 2 cm up in front.
This game could never be on route due to this. I guess Hobbit was only intended as a home use game?

Yes every time the Warg "gulps" down a ball it alters the switch and works poorly until I look into it and re-adjust it, same with the orc.

It used to be that when a creature ate a ball they would be stuck forever until you physically dug them out. Then you would adjust the switch at that time.
Now with the software fix the creature will spit up the ball back in play, but you still have to adjust the switch once in awhile.

And yes, a lot of us have chimed in, and felt that stuck balls in the mechs would make location play a nightmare.

#937 5 years ago
Quoted from kapsreiter:

at the right side the ball could stop
after airballs

I havent had this happen yet (crossing fingers).
I think its a lot more common to have a ball stuck on top of the right plastic behind the spot light post. But this is not too hard to fix.

1 week later
#1031 5 years ago

With the recent code updates I would think that many of us would give this game a better rating in the top 100?
Into the fire simply ROCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

#1042 5 years ago
Quoted from system11:

Standard #103 should be with me tomorrow. Stern were taking too long building my TWD and have lost a sale. It'll look nice next to WOZ Only problem is my back is still injured from moving that one, I'm going to have to hire people to move it into the house for me.

I pity the people you hire for this TH is a heavy one....go slow and lift with the legs (ass pointing towards the floor)!

#1064 5 years ago
Quoted from Goronic:

I plan on looking under the PF every day for a few days to inspect wear and check for and tightening loosing screws. I know others would hate the idea, but I don't mind keeping a super close eye out on those things.
Further, I don't plan on have an box opening party - it will be the day after. Opening day will be me spending hours reviewing the PF (top and bottom) and running tests. Guests will not be happy with the long delay.

The key areas on my game after the first 150 plays were:

Flipper mech mounting screws (glued in now)

Flipper coil stops (I added blue loctite)

Drop target assemblies (my dwarf actually fell partially at about 250 plays added toothpicks and titebond III, so far so good)

Creature mech mounting screws ( I havent had one fall, but I glued the screws in after the dwarf target fell down)

Check the lower diverter in the left ramp, it has a single screw and when loose wont divert the ball properly (glued with blue loctite)

If you haven't already, order the external volume control for the door from pinnovators

Check the dwarf switches they take a terrible beating. I have bent my R and F down a couple times and am thinking of installing a thin washer below to make the whole assembly tilt down a little bit to take care of the air-balls.

One other thing is to look at the mystery target. Like the WOZ glinda target (my wife often can only shoot straight up the middle and beats the sh#t out of it) I think it needs a bit if stiff foam or an extra bit of support somewhere.

Im sure there are a few other very minor checks, but that was what I found mostly on my game.

#1066 5 years ago
Quoted from konghusker:

So lifted the playfield today and found 2 wood metal screws, 1 wood screw, and a larger bolt/screw in bottom. Found knocker missing the wood screw, but can't find others. Frustrating.

Post a picture of the screw, someone might recognize it.

#1073 5 years ago
Quoted from fordtudoor:

^^^^^^^^^^these are machine screws; they wouldn't be used to hold a t-nut in WOOD.

Not the screw that holds the t-nut in place but the screw that goes into the t-nut.

The bigger screw is definitely from a larger or heavier assembly like a transformer, a speaker or maybe the smaug mech.

#1089 5 years ago
Quoted from kpg:

I just installed the 3D printed troll fix things that Pinball Bulbs sells http://www.pinballbulbs.com/products/hobbit-troll-ball-catch-fixes
--they work great, no more balls getting stuck and needing to wait for the ball searches. Wasn't a big problem, but for $20 and about 45mins of installation time, they work as expected.

Nice to see you back KPG!

Can you supply pics of the finished work?
Also can you give details on the degree of difficulty on installing this modification?
Problems, hassels etc.

My WARG has a black eye from gulping so many balls down its trap door.....

#1093 5 years ago

I think the black looks good, more menacing maybe?
Or maybe they are wearing formal attire?

#1098 5 years ago
Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

I bought a set of black printed ones from you and installed them in an hour. I tried to order the 1/4 in. extended nut driver with magnetic head from Pinball Life but they are on holiday. So I used my socket set, with one problem being it is not magnetic. I lost 2 F&CKING screws in the process that are still MIA. But ultimately got the job done. I used painters tape to secure the screw to the socket before aligning it with a hole. This worked pretty well - 8/10 times
The black version, which is now christened the Stealthy Collector's Edition, blocks the spotlighting effect almost entirely and reduces overall glare. It is probably a little brighter than shown. Result is a more subtle lighting and the black color of the plastic really disappears into the playfield too. Maybe makes it look like a dark hole rather than a light bar in front of each pop up too. A bigger disadvantage is the faces aren't lit as well with the black version. When I get my repair kit from JJP , I'll probably be staying with these, the black ones. Because you know what they say ...

Reminds me to get that set of magnetic socket extensions next trip to harbor freight.....
I hate not having the right tool for the job....it always leads to frustration and time wasted.

#1107 5 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

What do you guys have your trough coil setting at?
I am having a terrible time getting the trough to put a ball in play with any consistency at all. Sometimes it can take 3-4 attempts before the ball is put in the shooter lane. Super annoying, especially when you start multiball.

yup, bend the metal tab about 1/8", remove the apron, in the trough exit hole. If its too tight a fit the ball bounces back into the trough.
A lot of WOZ had to do this.

#1124 5 years ago
Quoted from konghusker:

My glass is just the opposite. It's not wide enough to fit into rails correctly. Lloyd us looking into it. Compared to my woz cab, th is nearly 1/2" wider and therefore the glass barely touches the side plastic guide. I have to lift it up near the top and pop it into place. Curious if anyone else with woz and hobbit can measure widths to compare.

Are you saying that your PF glass is too narrow for the cabinet?
Are you also saying that the cabinet is wider than your WOZ? This is very odd.

Are the 2 PF glasses the same width/dimensions?

#1132 5 years ago
Quoted from konghusker:

Yep, it sorta catches, but once it gets to the top, I have to reach up to top and basically pop it into the guide better or it hangs low on one side and won't go all the way into the top guide. 1/4" wider glass would fix it, but jjp said they wouldn't do a specific cut for the fix. Not sure what else I could do. Just sucks because it's annoying and has scratched glass and black wood as it slides up off guides. Oh well.

Quoted from VolunteerPin:

I have same issue. It finally catches about 8 inches in but it is certainly not wide enough by probably 1/4 inch or more.
Compared to the photo above it is almost exactly the same.

It has to be either shipping damage or something is out of spec.

#1136 5 years ago
Quoted from konghusker:

That was another thing I thought, but after measuring outside cabinet area, it's bigger than woz. I was wondering if all hobbits measured the same or if I just got a lemon

Both my WOZ and Hobbit measure 24 3/4" below the lock bar on the font panel They are exactly the same width.

#1148 5 years ago
Quoted from konghusker:

^^ I may have to try that after vacation in a couple weeks. Like I said, it's not the end of the world, but annoying. Thanks

If this is not a defective cabinet from JJP then it must be shipping damage (cabinet corners popped loose).
Clamp it with a little titebond 3 and it should be a seamless repair if its just loose.

#1155 5 years ago
Quoted from lukewells:

Hi guys!
Smaug #83 owner reporting for duty.
I'm absolutely loving the game, so much to do, so much challenge, and still loving the 4 pop-ups even after many games
I've found a few issues and bugs with the game (I'll do a video shortly so I can pass the info onto JJP)
My 2 biggest issues are :-
1) The wireform that returns to the far left outlane is terrible and does not reliably return the ball, it often either drops the ball on the side, or bounces it over the stop post (thus getting a ball drain instead of starting a mode quite often) - I've spent much time tweaking it, but it's just not working reliably, it's very flawed and should have been made with sides, like the other wireforms. Anyone know if JJP are making a fix for this, as long term it is going to be the most frustrating thing about the game.
2) After a few minutes of play, my playfield LED's will "lockup" and they will not return to normal operation until I have turned the power off and on again. What I mean by this is that the LED's will lock-on in random positions and random colours and stay stuck like that. Originally I thought it might be a software issue as it happened infrequently, but now it is happening all the time. Anyone any ideas? I have already re-seated all the cables to the usb board, and all the LED driver boards under the playfield, as well as the leads going back to the computer. Additionally, when the LED's lock up, I have tried jiggling the loom about, and it doesn't change, so it's not related to any lose connection as far as I can tell
Cheers guys

Send in a repair ticket to get the new wireform, or get it from your distributor.
Contact JJP about the lock-ups this is not what most are experiencing, It may be bad power or an extension cord?

#1173 5 years ago
Quoted from Goronic:

On some occasions I get the spider to come up and then right back down - I know that it is a slight adjustment but not sure what. Can anyone give any details on the correction? Leaf switch adjustment I think?

You can adjust the switch, sometimes just bend the creature head a very tiny bit. My WARG always goes out of adjustment after the trap door gulps the ball.

#1174 5 years ago
Quoted from FalconPunch:

What Flipper rubber colors are people changing too? What looks best?

I like the green

#1176 5 years ago

Is there any interest in timed game play?

I never participate in pinball during any of my get-togethers as my ball times are too long and its boring for novices to play with me.

I think it would be fun to implement a max ball time for parties and such in the code.
This would lead to all sorts of fun, like how many points you could get in a minute or 2 or three.

I could use this on all my games.

#1266 5 years ago

My ramp flaps are getting pretty beat up near the bottom where the ball strikes the ramp.
As others have seen, this is causing the flap to bend up about 1/8" to 3/16".

It does impact the ball speed going up the ramp by a bit, and causes a little bouce that kills inertia, that makes it harder to make the ramp shot.

Other than bending the flap back down and loosening the screws (as I have done) for a temporary fix, Is there a permanent solution?
Maybe more robust flaps out of stronger spring steel? Does anyone carry this for me to order?
Somehow reduce the initial slope of the ramp flap by installing the flap a little higher up?
Putting some foam tape under the flap initially so that it wont bend as much after repetitive ball strikes?

What seems to be the correct solution?

#1269 5 years ago

The problem is that the ramp is too steep for the ball to roll up it.
It instead "hits" the ramp flap corner, and then rolls up the ramp.

Again a more graceful bend should fix it permanently. Or a "way" more robust ramp flap out of better spring steel.

Marco sells .006 steel and pinrestore sells .007 spring steel for restoration.

Can someone measure the thickness of the current material?
I'm wondering if the current flaps are not the right material.
They look like stainless.

The problem isnt unique to this game, I have seen it on a few others too. In time the ramp flaps get all beat up.
Im just curious if there is a good solid fix for this.

#1281 5 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

Who is going to replace the flaps on the ramps when they are riveted in? Seems like very few owners will have the ability to do this.
Very strange regarding the springs for the drop targets. I have never had a single problem with any of my drop targets working. They are 100%.

I think the thriftiest rivet tool is the "C" clamp one. Its cheap and does the job.

Anyone have a link to this tool?

I have forgotten where I got mine....

#1285 5 years ago

WOW thats a long way from New Jersey!
Amazing game!

#1287 5 years ago
Quoted from pinballinreno:

I think the thriftiest rivet tool is the "C" clamp one. Its cheap and does the job.
Anyone have a link to this tool?
I have forgotten where I got mine....

here it is:

#1289 5 years ago
Quoted from markmon:

For the ramp flaps, what about loosening the ramps up and putting some foam to support the ramp under the ramp flaps?

I used to be a machinist tool and die man before all that work went to china.

I loosened my ramp again last night.
The flaps bent easily, looked like thin stainless steel.

The problem is the material is too soft.

They should be spring steel of a high quality, maybe .008 or .009 in thickness
I might try the .007 steel that pinbits sells, but I think its too thin.

It is true that multiple ball strikes will anneal and soften even the hardest materials, but I think a high quality spring steel will last long enough if its hard enough. I dont care about rusting, I will just wax it like everything else.

Its a PITA to completely remove the ramp just to re-rivet the ramps, but I will if I have to.
Im inclined to wait a bit and see what JJP is offering before I tear it all apart.

Maybe give Ken over there a call and see what he thinks, he is an actual engineer.

#1290 5 years ago
Quoted from freddy:

what size rivets? need to know what size die set to order!

I think he includes a set of die's, we would use the 1/8" one.
Email him and tell him its for pinball 1/8" tubular rivets.

Or get the big heavy one from pinrestore.com its a great unit and he has everything you need right there on his site.

#1294 5 years ago
Quoted from Pimp77:

I actually tried that. It lasts longer, but still curls up.

I just got an email from Vic at JJP.
They are aware of the problem and an update kit will be available soon.

#1305 5 years ago
Quoted from whthrs166:

Hey markmon didn't you post that you turned up your flippers. What setting? I had mine on 24 and once I converted over to Super Bands I got massive air balls. I had to turn them back down to default. Did you see that situation when you went to Super Bands? Highly recommend the Super Bands by the way.

Im on the fence about superbands™...
I had them installed and now Im using Titan silicone bands.
The Silicone seems more lively, more like fresh rubber. The Urethane super bands seem dead more like spent rubber.
They are both really nice and super durable. I imagine that the superbands will last years even on location.

However I really like the "feel" of the titan bands better.

#1308 5 years ago
Quoted from whthrs166:

My shots are more accurate with the Super Bands. More control also.

Same here! But maybe slightly bouncier on the silicone?
I was super sold on the superbands for a long time, now I like the silicone better. It bounce passes a little better, maybe slightly less flipper roll up on a live catch?
Same more accurate control.
Its hard to explain, its more a feel than anything else, for me at least.
I say try both and decide what you like best.
My wife much prefers the silicone, she gets more spring off the bats on a weak hit.

#1334 5 years ago
Quoted from lukewells:

So things are not going the best with my Hobbit so far.
I'd like to make it clear, that I still do think it is a fantastic game (in theory) but there are a lot of annoyances making the ownership experience not so good right now. I documented a bunch of them in video below, is there a good way to share this info with JJP so they can look at addressing some of the issues?
1) Coils melting
There is clearly a bug with the pop-ups. If the switch triggers multiple times (because the "troll" target switches a little shoddy and vibrate back and forth quickly, even after multiple attempts to adjust them) then it keeps pulsing the power to the coils (so it seems) Eventually the coil melts, it's hard to tell there is even anything wrong, until it’s too late and you have a pop-up error it won't go down anymore.
My Warg melted after 24 games, and my Orc melted after 125 games. There should be a safety timeout in the software at the very least to stop it melting coils.
2) Balls falling off the far left wireform all the time.
This one seems like such a bad design, no idea why it doesn’t have sides like the other wireforms, which would make it so much more reliable. Trying to adjust this wireform perfectly is so frustrating. On mine, the ramp is bad and has a lip which causes the ball to ski-ramp off the wireform, over the ball save post, and down the drain
3) Ball hangups
On pretty much every machine I own, there are little clear plastics attached with angle brackets (either from the factory – or as operator service kits) that deflect balls away from areas in which they can get stuck. On Hobbit, there are a few places where the ball can hang (and have happened to me a few times) so it looks like we need some deflectors to fix them (I have some photos of ball hangs) I think they are made worse by the popups and drop targets sometimes launching the balls in the air.
4) Inability to “rescue” a ball mid game.
On most pins, you can “pause” by opening the coin door, removing the glass and then returning a stuck ball to the shooter lane (especially important in competitions) but on the Hobbit, when you close the coin door (in order to be able to put the glass back on) it immediately fires the ball out, so you can never save them.
5) Playfield lamps “freeze” or crash
During a long game, the playfield lamps will eventually freeze up (some on, some off) and will not return to working until the game is power cycled. I have been told to try swapping the USB cable ports, so I will try this when my game is working again.
6) Parts breaking or falling off
I am collecting a small number of screws of unknown origin in the bottom of my cab, again I am only on 125 plays, so this should not be happening already. Additionally I am finding bits of broken clear plastic appearing in the bottom of the cab (see video) - the source of these is the pop-up mechs, there is a clear plastic U shaped light guide under all the popups, these are clearly not strong enough and are smashing to bits. My first one dropped broken pieces into the bottom of the cab in less than 24 games. This part needs replacing/upgrading on all 4 targets
7) Lights crash if you perform a GI test
After a GI test, playfield lamps will not work at all until the game is power cycled. This is of course a minor issue for software.
8 ) Can’t set the time.
No matter how many times I re-set the time to the correct time in the menu’s next time I check , the time has changed +/- 2 hours. The minutes are always right but the hours change themselves and are never right.
9) Can’t properly disable broken features
If something breaks (see melted coils above) you can disable some of the mechanisms in settings, but there is no broken feature compensation, therefor, the game cannot be played properly and advanced to Into the Fire etc. This is more noticeable on my machine due to the length of time it has spent with popups not working, so therefor not fully playable
10) Rails under playfield do not line up
The rails (with black rubber stoppers) were clearly designed to line up with and “stop” on the lock down bar mech, but the rails miss the mech and are instead leaning on the cab. The problem with this is that it is going to over time damage the front of the cabinet
11) The popups can swallow a ball if they drop down when a ball is at the front (I understand this is going to be fixed)
Obviously these issues are of different levels of importance, but I would like to see some of the more frustrating problems resolved sooner rather than later. I’ve not had much dealing with JJP so far, so I will give them the benefit of the doubt, and assume they will fix things for now (unlike a certain other pinball manufacturer that is completely incapable of dealing with feedback)
Video links :-
» YouTube video
» YouTube video

Sorry to hear about all these problems, they will all be sorted out JJP is a good company.

Definitely you need some support and replacement parts from JJP.

On the left wireform:

This has been a problem from the beginning. See my hobbit tweaks thread for some info on this:


With a little patience and some bending (bend the loop up a bit) I got mine working pretty good.
Fortunately JJP has a redesigned wire-form available now, or add a post and bend the loop up.

There is an upgrade kit coming very soon to fix the ball traps in the creature mechs. Fill out a repair ticket on the JJP support site.
There will also be some drop target springs and maybe replacement ramp flaps for those that are curling.

You definitely need to contact JJP or your distributor I think about the software lock-ups.
Version 1.3+ is available real soon.

I had a lot of loosened screws after about 250 plays.
So I went over the entire game and tightened and wood-glued in any that were super loose.
I also had to tighten the flipper coil stop screws and added a drop of blue locktite, so far so good.
I just checked my work after another 200 plays and everything has stabilised, no more loose screws.

Im not sure about the little clear plastic switch support in the creature mechs. Yours are definitely cracking or were installed to tightly? Or were too brittle and from a bad batch????
Or it may be that the U-clips? cracked from vibration during the long ride to the UK. The heads would bobble and bounce a lot during an extended journey.
Im going to check mine tonight and see if there is anything wrong.
JJP will probably send you some, but you will have to pull the all the affected mechs again to replace them, that sucks.

I also noticed that the hobbit PF support rails were set quite a bit wider than the lock bar mech, and barely settle where they should. As you said this is trivial, one could probably rework the supports and bend them in a bit, but its trivial.

#1374 5 years ago
Quoted from Razorbak86:

If balls are skipping over the kickback switch and you want to play the game, it seems like you have two options. Either pay JJP for the replacement wireform, or fix it yourself.
PS - The Dremel tip was specifically targeted at Luke's wireform, because of the extended nubs on his wireform with the ski-jump effect visible in his YouTube video. I don't think everyone else's wireform looks exactly like that (at least I hope not).

Widening the prongs that stick out at the bottom of the loop 1/8" (basically widen the loop at the bottom) and bending the loop up about 3/16" to 1/4" will have a positive effect without grinding. this allows the ball to duck under the loop.

I havent had a game in my collection yet that didnt need tweaking of the wireforms.
(Remember On the TZ we all gave up fixes and added a magnet to the diverter).

Most games need a little quality time to get them close to perfect and somewhat reliable.

I expect JJP games to be no differet

The HUGE difference is the way that games are supported during warranty, and after.
The team at JJP is incredible!

#1375 5 years ago
Quoted from VolunteerPin:

quick drains on the left will sometimes not activate the kickback even when lit. Any thoughts? Is this being addressed in new code?

Maybe fiddle with the delay setting or check the switch and actuator.

#1398 5 years ago
Quoted from lukewells:

Can you share the reason then? It seems unfair, that just because I was assigned a lower serial number Smaug, I get the defective ramp, and people who were assigned a higher serial number Smaug get the re-designed ramp.
IF the original ramps are just fine, then they would not have re-designed them mid run
It's a bit of a kick in the teeth with all the other problems I have been having over such a short period of time.

Pinball machines are hand-made. As improvements are discovered they will be immediately added to the assembly line.
Early adopters/purchasers know that there will be updates later on in the run.

First to pay=first to play (first to wait for code updates, improvements etc. But it is fun to be a part of the development phase, I think).

I have every confidence that JJP will solve each and every issue you have had. I also imagine they will give you a newer style wireform by asking if you agree to send your old one back to them (a little bit of fair give and take).

I rarely see these days any company that is as willing as JJP to find compromise and success on the side of the purchaser.
I also find it incredible that the JJP staff including Jack himself is continually available for contact via phone or email as needed, no matter if its a single home purchaser, or a big distributor.

The wireform per se is not defective. But there is a possible ball hang issue that is being resolved via a free update kit.
With a little tweaking my wireform works 100% and I dont even have a post on it for the ball hang issue, nor have I ground any of the metal off of it.

One thing that has come up I think, during manufacture, is the playfield pitch. It is almost universally agreed that the factory setting of 6.5 degrees is too shallow for "exciting" game-play. Games that are factory tested at 6.5 degrees will need user adjustments on site to play properly at say 7 degrees or higher until the factory makes changes on the line if ever.

Pinball has always been subject to interpretation. A lot of route operators tweak and adjust their games in an effort to keep their paying customers happy, they almost always speed up the games a bit.

The new era of "home" users had led to a different approach with customised game-play and custom modifications.

There is no such thing as perfection in a pinball machine, as always it's what seems perfect for you, and a little bit of randomness leads to more fun!

Now pinball can be a personalized interactive art form? I guess it always was for a lot of people.

#1401 5 years ago

I think the $89 price is to discourage giving out free wireforms to anyone that asks weather they need it or not.
Personally mine works 100%. If I find that I want the new one, I will pay for it as I'm one of the ones that dont need it.

The re-designed wireform does not have a double loop at the bottom to catch and drop the ball.
Balls can still skate off towards the sling plastic and drain, or roll up the loop. It will still need a bit of tweaking to make it closer to 100% reliable.

It mostly only addresses the ball hang issue.

#1404 5 years ago
Quoted from fnosm:

The wire form is defective because the ball hits the cross member below the longitudinal wires and becomes airborne. If the longitudinal wires were thicker or the cross members were bent out of the way there wouldn't be airballs. Check out this solution offered a couple of months ago that illustrates this issue.
This is pointing to post #462 in this topic (Hobbit Owners Thread) I say this because sometimes it is hard to find the post being referred to.

This is correct. Grinding the cross bar or bending it down a hair is the only solution on this version (It hits about 1/64" but enough to kick the ball off the track. I ended up just bending it down a bit with a wedged screwdriver and pliers).
I also had wire ends sticking up a bit on the end but just bent them down with pliers.

The revised wireform adds a wall of wire on the left side to solve a ball hang problem, I dont know if they added a bend in the lower crossbar.

They did not add a double loop to catch the ball on the current revision.

One thing to note:

I also bent the double loops up about 3/16" on the wireforms to correct the ball spin-out problem.
I haven't had a ball spin out to the in-lanes or out-lane since.

#1405 5 years ago
Quoted from crwjumper:

I'm in!
My Hobbit LE ships today direct from JJP. I got it from Automated - Mike seems very nice and quite customer service oriented. Gave me a competitive price and spoke with JJP. They said that they will ship one that has both ramp fix is as well as the "Beast" popups fixes installed and tested. I've ordered a set of gameblades from Tilt graphics and the backbox lighting "gels" to increase the lighting contrast. I can't wait!

Congrats on your new game! Its an amazing experience.

#1411 5 years ago
Quoted from metahugh:

It seems to me that the "ramp flap fix" is just a rumor. No actual fix exists.

I got an email from Vic that says the fix is real and will be available soon.
Just make a support ticket for it and any other things you might want in the support portal.

#1412 5 years ago
Quoted from paynemic:

I have an le that came off the line early this week and is shipping now. Anyone know if the ramp flap fix will be on it? That's a tough one for me to fix later because I don't have riveting tools or skills. Seems like a pita

I would call and make sure its what you want or delay shipping.

#1422 5 years ago
Quoted from lukewells:

You've missed some of the previous posts about my ramp, installing a bumper will not fix the problem at all, I would need to take a grinder to my wireform as others have suggested to grind off the nubs that are sticking out and causing the ball to jump over the stop post

The nubs can be bent down a bit with pliers but its not the real reason for the ball skip. I did that on mine.
Spread the lower part of the loop out a bit. Maybe 3/16" total, bend up the loop maybe 1/4" or more.
Use 2 pair of needle-nose pliers and bend the last cross bar down slightly (put a little "V" or "U" shape in it), problem solved.
Try it, if you f#ck it up just wait for the replacement one. At the very least the game will play better while waiting for a replacement wire-form.

#1445 5 years ago
Quoted from VolunteerPin:

So, I've been playing around with my flipper coil settings. My pitch is at 6.9 and I'm currently at 26 on right and 25 on left. I can backhand the ramps but sometimes with just barely enough power. I have noticed more airballs at these settings and am contemplating going back down to a pitch of 6.5 (lol, which I was also scoring better on). Has there been any kind of consensus on the best settings for pitch and flipper power?

I had the same setup.
Recently I raised the pitch to 7.1, coils at 26 and 27.
Air-balls about the same but balls exiting the pops go to the flipper instead of STDM.
I also raised the sling power on all of them another notch.
I think it plays better.

#1478 5 years ago
Quoted from ikrananka:

Is there any need to use leg protectors or do the new cabinet external metal leg brackets eliminate the need for them? I'm obviously worried about the legs damaging the cabinet decals (I have the standard decals and not the Rad Cals).

External metal brackets are included.

#1485 5 years ago

Yay! Congrats!
I see you got the new left wire-form, did you also get the ball trap fix/inserts inside the pop-ups?

#1491 5 years ago
Quoted from crwjumper:

Yes. I got those and the new springs for the drop targets I think. I also gave a cursory check of the screws under the play field and they all seemed tight. JJP is listening!
(Thanks LTG!)

It also looks like you have upgraded ramp-flaps.

#1501 5 years ago
Quoted from paynemic:

Mine comes tomorrow!!! How would I recognize the upgraded ramp flaps? It's my biggest worry.

It looks like from the above picture, that the new ramps are black instead of silver.
Black or dark blue would indicate spring steel instead of regular stainless.

#1510 5 years ago
Quoted from PanzerFreak:

To prevent the ramp flaps from curling up could you wax the area of the playfield just in front of the ramp and apply mylar with half of the strip being on the ramp flap to hold it down?

I have mine taped down with mylar right now. Its an ok fix but the mylar gets cut up pretty easily.
New flaps are on the way from JJP as an upgrade. I hope they are included in the update kit along with the character mech fixes, ball post and springs.

#1518 5 years ago

I just talked to Sal at JJP and ordered my update kit for the ball traps and post etc.
Its easy, just chose it from the drop down on the support portal and make a ticket.
Be prepared though to call them up and pay for the shipping of $8.00.

I also asked about the upgraded ramp flaps. They will be available next week or so.
Jack might do a video on this also.

From what I understand, of the moment, the kit probably will include 2 sets of rivets, one set for a arbor press, and one set for a regular inexpensive pop-rivet gun from home depot or harbor freight. This might solve the issue of people having to buy an expensive press.

This should be a drop in replacement that would need no drilling of the ramp or playfield, but you would have to either grind off or scrape off the old rivets.

When you order you might ask for a couple extra rivets in case one gets crushed or mangled during its installation (it happens...).

#1521 5 years ago

Removing the ramp isnt too bad. They are working on an instruction sheet to make it easier to get this job done.
Removing the rivets on the metal ramp assembly will take either a drill motor and bit, to drill out the underside rivet end, or a dremel to grind it off from the underside. Fortunately this is a metal ramp and any mistakes will never be seen.

#1522 5 years ago

Comments on 1.3 code:

This update has changed the way I play.

I no longer "chop wood" endlessly to get mutiballs and high scores.

My game is now about collecting runes to get into the "into the fire and Barrel escape" modes.
The sooner I can: complete a mode, finish Smaug MB (usually get all the dwarves during MB), kill the beasts, and get to erebor, the better.
I get great satisfaction upon completing the modes and learning new things about the game each time I play.

Into the fire and barrel escape are such a rush! I want to get to them as soon as possible!

One thing I noticed is that its way harder to get to Erebor via the spinners with the book MB addition as the ball returns via the ramp instead of going thru the spinner to advance.

I also like the ability to turn pages in the book via the flippers while the ball is on the wireform. If you get lucky you can scroll thru to a single task mode to get your rune.

With all of this I can get to a million points in 15 mins vs 40 mins on a good game.

Until now I never postponed the lock feature, but now depending on whats going on, I do it a lot.

I havent killed Smaug or finished Into the fire, I just dont know how to do it...!
Maybe there's a video on it...

#1525 5 years ago
Quoted from sulli10:

Twice now, I have been close to getting to barrel escape but for some reason I can not get the spider to light so that I can finish the beasts for the last arkenstone. What am I missing?
Did get to beat Smaug. Have no idea how I did it except a lot of Smaug multi balls

Check the spider in the pop up test then check the switch with a ball to make sure it registers.
Make any necessary adjustments if needed.

#1527 5 years ago
Quoted from FalconPunch:

How many games do owners play in a row before moving to another pin or switching it off?
With the new multiball in modes do people feel fatigued after a long game?

For the past couple months I personally am playing 3 or 4 games a night and havent played anything else really.
I did however play GB in Las Vegas last week a lot! But oddly I missed playing my TH still.

#1547 5 years ago
Quoted from ikrananka:

this issue, along with a few other problems I have come across, really highlight that their QA needs to be stepped up.

I dont think this is a QA problem but a vendor issue.

Essentially molded cables are always purchased from a vendor of sorts.
It would be nice if companies made all the cables "in-house", but they dont and really its not necessary.
I have been selling cables for 30 years and I can tell you that even the best cable makers in the world have tragic failures.

All that is needed is for someone to note how many cables are bad from a certain vendor and switch vendors if needed.
Cables are dirt cheap.

No one would ever skimp on quality as super premium cables are the near same price as junk ones.

I am quite certain that each and every failure is logged and batches are checked for quality as problems come up.

This is why its super important for all failures to be reported to JJP ASAP, no matter how small, so that they can control the quality and make changes as necessary.

JJP is still a new company and often vendors lie about their ability to deliver a quality product in order to gain their business.
JJP as with us all will live and learn over time and make the hard decisions.

Super premium or cheap junk cables, if they are bad just replace and move on to the next challenge....

#1548 5 years ago
Quoted from pinballer0415:

I think I explained most of the rules in either this thread or the Hobbit Rulesheet thread. But here are the basics for Into the Fire and Smaug mb.
Into the Fire: Stage 1 = collect enough members to light the super jackpot which is collected at the left ramp. The stand up targets (9 of them), 2 spinners, 2 ramps, left hole, and captive ball all represent a member. Collecting super jackpot adds a ball into play and begins Stage 2. Stage 2 = hit 3 drop targets to raise the Warg. Hit the Warg. Repeat this cycle 5 times. Super jackpot is collected at the captive ball and adds a ball into play and begins Stage 3. Stage 3: hit 10 beasts as they randomly pop up. Every beast but the bottom left will potentially pop up. After hitting 10 beasts, both the Goblin and Orc will both stand up and you have to collect the jackpot by shooting through the two beasts and hitting the captive ball. This collets the super jackpot and advances to Stage 4. Stage 4: shoot a ramp to raise three beasts (warg, goblin, orc). Hit the beasts 15 times total. Ideally, this would mean 5 ramp shots and hitting each beast when they pop up. However, each ramp shot raises all 3 beasts again even if all haven't been collected since the last ramp shot. After collecting all 15 beasts, you then shoot the super jackpot at the right ramp, which adds a ball into play and advances the player to Stage 5. Stage 5: victory laps! The goal is to collect all 15 members at increasing point values. Once again, the 15 members are the 9 stand ups, 2 ramps, 2 spinners, left hole, and captive ball. You will know you are in victory laps when you hear the awesome music and Bilbo and Gandalf flying on the some animals over a valley.
Smaug mb: collect enough of the ramps, holes, and spinners. Then whenever you see the MAN targets lit red, you are close to defeating smaug. Hit any MAN target, which then lights the ARF targets. Hit any of those targets to relight the MAN targets. Hit MAN targets again and then hit one of the two remaining ARF targets. Repeat step one more time. Then finally, the right ramp will be the only jackpot lit indicating that the ball will be diverted to the windlance. The player then must press the ring button and the first switch that needs to be hit is the lit stand up target that is red (one of the ARF targets) indicating Smaug's missing scale. You will know when you hit the right one
If you don't hit the right target, then the player must hit a MAN target and reload the right ramp and try to hit the missing scale. Good luck! Easy to do without beast frenzy going, very hard to do with it going. FYI.

Well done ! Thank you so much.

#1550 5 years ago
Quoted from Sammy31:

Hi There,
You are stating that the ball is leaving the left wire because it is using the loop as a jump.
Your video shows the ball off the rails BEFORE it gets to that loop.
I would check to see if the ball is hitting that ramp mechanism (on right side) (just before it makes that final plunge to the loop). I had this issue with mine, so I moved that rail a bit (or the other one) and all is well, no issues.

On some of the games the ball is getting a little boost into the air from hitting the last cross member in the wireform.

#1562 5 years ago
Quoted from whthrs166:

I agree with you. Cables dont go bad in shipping.

Cables can go bad in shipping since they are just crimped connections.
I have had expensive (monster) cables work for only a single insertion. Problem was that the crimp was too heavy and cut the wires off so that in test it was only "touching" and worked perfectly until it was unplugged and then never worked again. Unplugging/slightly bending the cable pulled the barely touching wires away from the contacts, it was a curiosity until I cut it open to examine it.

This has happened more than once.

So basically what works perfect in testing may not work in the field, there are many variables, again JMHO but connector failure is the bane of computers, cars, spacecraft and pinball....but cables are cheap, replace it and move on to the next challenge...

#1567 5 years ago
Quoted from Jeekayjay:

Nice congrats!
What tweaks did you make?

Cool gold coin flipper covers from Matt it looks like...

#1622 5 years ago
Quoted from Pimp77:

What does it matter?

Because we need to know if big scary dragon artwork is better than a grim looking bunch of middle earth guys....Or which one is harder or easier to get... (although both seem pretty easy to get it seems...)

#1623 5 years ago

I just finished a 40 min game. Couldnt complete a singe mode. The one ring was impossible, I couldnt make a single ramp shot. No into the fire, no barrel escape, just a bunch of multiballs... 2.4 million score, Im disgusted with myself, the game kicked my a$$.
I cant wait to play it again..The game just ROCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

#1635 5 years ago

Looks like a nice TAF playfied in the one photo!
You should sell it to me (if you are not using it...)

#1650 5 years ago
Quoted from ChrisBardon:

Can anyone who has installed the new beast mech inserts from the update kit comment on how they fit in relation to the spider mech? I installed one of these earlier this week, and it was rubbing against the front of the spider model, since there was a decent degree of overlap between it and the plastic. There doesn't really seem to be a straightforward way to bend the assembly back so it clears the plastic, even though there seems to be space. Still waiting on a response from JJP, but I'd be interested in seeing whether other games have the same clearances.

For the moment remove the upgrade from the spider mech. Balls dont get trapped in the spider its too big.
Its possible that your spider is hanging forward a bit.

The entire mech assembly should probably be removed for inspection.
Its a PITA but not really too hard if you have done it a couple times.

Maybe thin or sand the insert a bit (it looks like it would take a lot of modification)? One would think it would fit?

My game also has close clearance to the front of the spider. So this may be similar to what I will also find...
I havent received my kit yet, I ordered it last week it might come today or tomorrow.

Since the new games are coming with this upgrade, I wonder how its installed at the factory and whether the mech has also been upgraded if the fix doesnt fit in all cases.

Or is there a special spider insert?
Or are the current spiders thinner?

#1654 5 years ago
Quoted from crwjumper:

I got a new LE last week and it had all of the current mods installed. The spider mech fits with no problem but the Warg's head was turned slightly to the left and was dragging on the insert. This was causing hits to register as soon as he popped up. After filing the insert for a while (they are REALLY tough!) I wasn't making much progress so I pulled the mech and gently twisted the whole head assy until it was straight. Now it stays up - most of the time. During "Beast Frenzy" and other modes which activate him he's pretty stable, but when he's activated by rolling through the left inlane he still pops-and-drops. Anyone have any ideas? Could this be a code issue? Is anyone else seeing this behavior?

In the test menu when you test the Warg you will notice that his head wobbles/buzzes? more than any of the other characters.
You just have to open the leaf switch a lot to compensate for the springiness of the head.
I had to use a leaf switch adjustment tool to get it right. Fiddling with needle-nose and flat blade screwdrivers was very hard to get it right.
The spider is the same way its kinda heavy and springs/wobbles a lot also.
This is why you see the mech kinda float up and down a little like its getting comfortable when its activated.
I think the code gives a little delay to compensate for the wobbleing so that it doesnt drop down immediately registering a false hit.

#1656 5 years ago
Quoted from whthrs166:

Check to see if the two guide plates inside the mech are aligned. I found in my game that if they are slightly misaligned the beast will intermittently bind when popping up. It's a little tricky to bend the guide plate just a bit but you can do it without removing the mech. There is a side plate on the mech. Just remove the screws and remove it so you can tweak the guide plate. Just be sure that the beast isn't rubbing on the PF or the insert. It's best to block the beast in the up position when doing this.

I just had to do this with my spider.
It was binding noticeably when I manually actuated it.
In my case, while the mech was propped up, I had to bend it slightly towards the back of the PF.
Its perfect now.

I also opened up all the leaf switches a bit. This makes them raise up crisp and firm and no odd floating/positioning behavior.

#1690 5 years ago
Quoted from konghusker:

Can the rollovers be adjusted to be more sensitive? If so how? I can't see an easy way to adjust them

They have leaf switches in them, bend the leaf up a bit until you are satisfied.
I adjusted all of mine when I increased the PF pitch past 6.5 degrees. The ball was travelling too fast for the switches to register.

#1694 5 years ago
Quoted from FalconPunch:

Got my hobbit finally. Yay.
Came in really good condition. Hardly anything needing attention. Was surprised that the caution writing on back box was NOT a sticker. Was like woz, printed on the wood.
Ok. So I need help dialling it in.
The winlance kickback. In test mode I put a rubber and staged the ball manually. about 1 in 5 times it hit the black rubber instead of the orbit. It's this acceptable? Anyone got it working 100 percent of the time?
The ball spin off the ramps left and right is causing the ball to spin to the right on exit. On the left ramp the ball will jump over the sling shot rubber ans got to left flipper. The right ramp will go straight down the right outlane! Little annoying to get the cheap drain. How do you fix and eliminate the spin?

I dont think the windlance is supposed to be perfect every time. Its a crude weapon and prone to misses (see the movie).
In game-play the effect is slightly randomised to make it more difficult?

Set windlance to easy in the adjustments it makes it less random, also maybe adjust power level to suit your needs. Test it "in game", its not the same as a stand alone test. I have had to bend the left side wall/guide at the very end of the lane slightly (wedge a small screwdriver between the wall and the last screw head or press on it) to make it way more consistent. Very small adjustments make big changes along with power manipulation.

See the tweaks thread about ball spin-out in the inlanes and outlanes.


Basically bend the double loop up (stick a big nut driver in the loop and bend it back a bit), at the end of the wire-form until the ball spins laterally instead of uphill.

I also have a printed backbox on my SE (no sticker).
Are the Smaug games different than the LE games in this respect?
Is the factory back-tracking on the backbox sticker concept and going back to ink?
I cant possibly believe that a sticker is cheaper or better than ink, unless your thinking restoration down the road?
I hate stickers they always lose their grip and fall of sooner or later...

#1698 5 years ago
Quoted from WackyBrakke:

My Smaug is a sticker :-/ Doesn't stay stuck down around the edges....Yeah it's on the back so who cares I guess......But printed sure does look better anyways.

call JJP and have them send you another sticker ( it should stick firmly if it has the right adhesive...), you might need it in the future....

#1736 5 years ago

Seeing that some screws have mysterious locations, It might be good to have a cross reference of all the hardware, screw sizes etc. and what it is used for.
This way I might be able to look up within a couple minutes where the screw might have come from.
Im sure this can be done as we have the assembly diagram and all the hardware in the manual.

Or basically a reverse directory of hardware and its use.

#1760 5 years ago
Quoted from Jeekayjay:

Not home to look at my machine to check before ordering cliffy's....
Are you guys putting cliffy's switch slot protectors on your inlanes ?

Does he have such a thing? Stainless drop protectors would be awesome.
The factory should have applied mylar already.

#1763 5 years ago

Those things rock!
Has anyone used them, or have any comments about these?

#1796 5 years ago
Quoted from Goronic:

Not sure....but I would like it to be something like throw pine cone and it would register a hit on the warg

Try as I may, under pressure the Warg is impossible to hit at times...for me.

#1816 5 years ago
Quoted from tatapolus:

Spoiler: I tried to kill Smaug. So I guess you have to load the kickback, which is supposed to fire the ball to the upper flipper and you have one shot to hit the lit target on the left. But... The kickback shot isn't very accurate. Most times it hits the post on the right of Radagast. So how am I supposed to make that shot? Played around with the kickback coil settings. But wasn't able to get it right. The coil was set to 7. Any ideas?

I had to adjust/bend the left side of the wall where the ball exits the windlance lane a tiny bit to get it more consistant.
Also adjust setting to easy in the menus.

#1874 5 years ago
Quoted from bkaelin:

Just opened up my SE tonight. Lifted playfield to prep for play. Removed the foam from back of playfield as per instructions.
Now I can't get the playfield to set back into place. See the images. Is this normal? Note in the images how the playfield supports are angled/bent. Is this normal? Did my game get banged around somewhere? I can't get the freaking playfield back down and I want to play this game. HELP !!!!!!

Quoted from RickAHG:

I just received my Hobbit LE today and I have the same problem. The brackets are bent, this is caused by the weight of the play field and the pin being mishandled by the shipping company (R&L Freight) in my case. You need to remove the 3 screws on the bracket and bend it back into shape to be able to play the pin. Pictured is the damage!

The game was dropped. Hard.
The foam block stuck the the far end of the PF was supposed to help in case of a small drop.
But in these cases the games were obviously dropped hard, either from the truck hitting a huge bump or a forklift driver dropping them.
JJp will send you all of the parts that were damaged in shipping.

The chipped PF can only be fixed with some clear painted on or a PF replacement.
This really sucks, I would make a claim with the carrier and JJP.

#1912 5 years ago
Quoted from Jeekayjay:

Lots of code tweaks to come methinks

I agree.
The game is a little multi-ball heavy right now, it needs something like a few 2 ball modes to balance it out. Or do something with the magnets.
Balanced code and finishing the game will make it the best!
Its hard to wait for the next update.
Im excited that the battle of 5 armies is coming soon. Epic wont even describe it!

#1915 5 years ago
Quoted from WackyBrakke:

My Hobbit won't come on, anyone have any ideas what to check for? I power it on and can hear the hum of the transformer, but there are no play field lights and the screens stay black. Let me know what you guys think. I opened a ticket with support too, waiting to hear back from them. Thx

See if this helps, it might just be a failed boot of the PC:
Turn off game
Unplug it from the wall.
Flip the power switch to the game on and then off.
Reset the computer.
Replug into the wall.
Turn the game back on.