(Topic ID: 85009)

How can I tell if my JD is a prototype? (It's not)

By Butch2099

6 years ago

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  • 10 posts
  • 7 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 6 years ago by mrofnoc
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider


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#1 6 years ago

I picked up a very nice JD to upgrade over the one I had and I noticed the planet ring had holes instead of slots. It was also running the original software. On IPDB it says: The test game version would lock balls on a ring that rotated slowly around the planet, until the third ball was locked, and then all three balls would be released by the Space Station Robotic Arm (a magnetic crane) for multi-ball.
In the production games, the locks are virtual and only the third locked ball is actually diverted to the planet, where it goes directly from the loading ramp to the crane and is lifted out immediately. The holes in the ring were cut open so if the crane ever failed, the balls will just fall off the ring as it turns.

Does anyone know of any other differences I should look for? Was someone just lazy in replacing the ring, or could it be something special? Or can anyone with the original ring call theirs a prototype?

Any answers/history would be great. Thx

#2 6 years ago

Bally Williams prototypes of this era had Red pcbs. If absent it still could be an early game or sample.

#3 6 years ago


You probably have the Dead world locking kit already installed. Check if you have the L1AT eprom

#4 6 years ago

It's also possible that you have a very early/sample game that someone put the Deadworld mod in. Easiest tell is to check your sniper plastic. Is it just a crosshair, or is it actually a dude with a gun? If it's actually the sniper, you probably have an early/sample game. If the game specific boards are red, then it's a prototype.

The early/sample (and prototype for that matter) games had some opto numbering differences, and therefore if you want the Deadworld mod, you need to run the L1 software (not the L1AT that normal games use with the mod).

#5 6 years ago

For early production machines: Pics of the Green plastic next to the left shooter, the sniper plastic, the optos on the right ramp entrance, and the opto board under the playfield that actually controls the optos for the Left ramp entrance.
As stated you'll be using L1 rom if you have these, otherwise L1AT, assuming you are using the Deadworld ring w/ the holes (not slots) and want the Deadworld to work the way it originally did. You can use either ring w/ later rom revisions. I also have L6 and I hear there is an L7
Hope this helps.

#6 6 years ago

Thx for all the responces. Looks like I just had the lazy guy who didn't want to buy a new plastic ring. No red pcb's, sniper plastic is just a crosshair, blue left plastic, no opto on the ramp & running the L1AT software. At least I learned something

#7 6 years ago

Not sure the "lazy" comment is warranted.

If the machine has the Deadworld locking ring and the L1AT ROM, someone installed the Pinbits Deadworld upgrade on a production machine. This is a very popular and common upgrade and I wouldn't say it qualifies as lazy. Common yes. Lazy no.

There are issues with the Pinbits ROM like its sensitivity to opto errors and the fact that it is set for free play only. There are also issues with the sound possibly not matching the locking ring. If you don't like the Deadworld mod and still have your old machine, you can swap the rings and ROMs between machines.


#8 6 years ago

Thanks for the updates. I was just kidding with the lazy comment. I will probably leave it original and order a new plastic ring and ROM if I feel it needs to be changed.

#9 6 years ago

Dan, that is a great looking JD you have there!

Butch2099, I realize now you don't have an early production/prototype machine but with Bally/Williams another thing to check is the serial number.


#10 6 years ago

Thanks you sir! I think it looks great too.

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