(Topic ID: 28409)

How to clean optos?

By Jgel

7 years ago

Topic Stats

  • 13 posts
  • 7 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 7 years ago by LTG
  • Topic is favorited by 3 Pinsiders


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    #1 7 years ago

    I have been reading about some issues I am having and it seems like on a few occasions the solution was to clean the optos and that fixed their issue. The only problem is that no one ever said how to clean the optos. Is there an explination for this, or is this just a really stupid question??

    #2 7 years ago

    Q Tip, moisten one end with Windex or water, dry opto with other end.

    No question is stupid if you learn or it helps.


    #3 7 years ago

    windex in a cup and dip a qtip. shake excess and wipe/roll it.

    #4 7 years ago

    Thanks guys, issue fixed. Only a few more to go.

    #5 7 years ago

    I'll inevitably use this advice when I get my next pin, a JD with what I understand to be an unusually high quantity of optos that tend to play up

    #6 7 years ago

    Usually opto issues are not caused by them being dirty. Reflowing the solder on the optos does seem to be the solution often though.

    #7 7 years ago

    Alignment of the Opto's can also give you some strange problems. Case in point was my "thing" opto on TAF, the one that triggers the shot into the swamp when thing flips for you.

    I cleaned the optos and re-flowed the solder connections and put everything back together only to have it work for a short time then start missing the shot. It would register correctly in switch test and never threw a credit dot error. It turned out the opto's were not in a good alignment with each other.
    I adjusted them by bending the bracket they were attached to and never had a problem since.

    The other opto problem which I started loosing my mind was on a JY and the VUK. It had a credit dot error on the game when I got it, not a problem. I checked the switch number and had a replacement receiver opto to put in. I aligned it with the trace / flat on the board and installed it. I still had problems. A long story short is the replacement opto had its orientation flat OPPOSITE what the original one was. When installed to match the board trace the opto was actually 180 degrees what it needed to be.

    Optos can be fun to trouble shoot.....

    #8 7 years ago
    Quoted from cal50:

    Optos can be fun to trouble shoot.....

    Looking forward to it Thanks for the tips!

    #9 7 years ago

    I just need to figure out what an Opto is?

    #10 7 years ago
    Quoted from Hwawonyu:

    I just need to figure out what an Opto is?

    Its an optical switch that consists of a emitter ( sender) and a receiver. They work similar to a mechanical switch but instead of contact they use a beam of light ( not visible to the naked eye) and the ball or an object breaks this beam to trip the switch closure.

    #11 7 years ago

    Thank You!

    #12 7 years ago

    Think of it like the safety on a garage door.

    #13 7 years ago
    Quoted from Hwawonyu:

    I just need to figure out what an Opto is?

    For a quick check, visit Bay Area Amusements, Pinball Life, Marcos, etc. Type in opto in the search box and see what they all look like.


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