(Topic ID: 209717)

Taking my girls resto-mizing a Bad Cats playfield by hand: now on national TV!?!


By goingincirclez

1 year ago



Topic Stats

  • 78 posts
  • 39 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 47 days ago by stef34
  • Topic is favorited by 24 Pinsiders

You

Linked Games

Topic Gallery

There have been 98 images uploaded to this topic. (View topic image gallery).

Interview (resized).jpg
BC_Card2 (resized).png
BC_Card1 (resized).png
20180630_012810 (resized).jpg
20180630_012807 (resized).jpg
20180630_012806 (resized).jpg
20180607_231324 (resized).jpg
20180607_231311 (resized).jpg
found (resized).jpg
20180607_231155 (resized).jpg
Wagner890 (resized).jpg
20180528_195018 copy (resized).jpg
20180528_194947 copy (resized).jpg
20180528_195008 copy (resized).jpg
20180527_212141 copy (resized).jpg
20180527_162406 copy (resized).jpg

There are 78 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
16
#1 1 year ago

EDIT March 2019: A quick interview about the restoration was syndicated nationally, WHAT?? http://watchstitch.com/article/its-the-nostalgia-arcade-expo-gives-parents-kids-chance-to-bond-over-classic-games/26743074

~~~~~

(oops... this first post is a long one... shoulda broke it into parts but I preloaded all the photos into this one)

When a guy is fortunate enough to have one tolerant wife, two amazing daughters, two ignorant cats, and 11 pinball machines... certain things are required to maintain order. Most of the 11 pins didn't come both cheap AND easy... and I'm certainly not loaded to indulge "easy". In fact, I love the challenge of bringing things back to life and I try to teach my kids that anything is possible. Maybe not practical, but possible. They've seen my restoration efforts first hand, and I like to think they've taken an appreciation of it. As for pinball, they love showing off to their friends, but are hardly devoted players themselves... yet. Lots of school activities keep them beyond busy so I don't complain.

But yeah, while I'm a guy in house with a woefully imbalanced estrogen content, l love cats and so do they. So! The latest project acquisition is a Bad Cats in need of help all around. The cab is solid but faded, the MPU board wouldn't boot, and the playfield... well... let's just say the playfield was probably never cleaned since it was unboxed:

01Start (resized).jpg

02_dirt (resized).jpg

03_dirt (resized).jpg

Pretty gross right? But the reaction when they saw it in the van in the garage made it worth it. It got better when I told them it didn't work... and they would have to help me fix it.

The MPU turned out to be an aggravating issue filled with giant red herrings lifted right off that playfield, as documented elsewhere here: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/system-11b-u42-pia-failure-no-progress-in-troubleshooting ... but it's working now. With that accomplished, I finally got to work with my girls on the playfield teardown and eventual reconditioning.

This game is destined to remain a player... not a high-end restore. The goal is to get them involved with the restoration by getting their hands dirty and having a playable game in a theme they love as the reward. I'll do most of the work of course... but this is a great learning lab for them.

*LESSON 1: Not everything is garbage (but it might look that way sometimes)*

My oldest, 13, helped me tear down the playfield so I could do a better job cleaning it. She got to experience stubborn fasteners and the frustration of fossilized lok-tite, as well as how overcome them with the apprpriate use of brute force because sometimes breaking things is not just OK, but required. She witnessed the destruction of the cleaning necessary to banish fused layers of nicotine scum, which makes things equally better and worse:

06_tdwear (resized).jpg

04_tdwear (resized).jpg

05_tdwear (resized).jpg

07_inlanegrime (resized).jpg

08_scoopdamage (resized).jpg

09_bethfix (resized).jpg

In the last picture above, she is removing the drop target banks so I can introduce her to the Miracle of Purple Power. Like me, she was astonished that none of the targets would drop without an assistive push into what felt like a vat of goo.

After she laid the assemblies on cardboad, soaked them with Purple Power, and gave them a generous rinse spray, they are snappy like new! She was pretty amazed, and maybe even a little proud

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

*LESSON 2: Recovery*

I'll admit: I did not have high hopes for cleaning the playfield back to any level of consistency. The mylar in the pop bumper nest preserved such a nice pristine original gray, but past experience has taught me that grays are very tough to match, whether you are cleaning, or retouching. And the grime layers were so uneven and different... I wasn't holding my breath.

Still, I bought a dozen assorted ME blocks, and mixed them with Naptha, Fantastik, and Elbow Grease. Lots of it. I was amazed at what came back:

10_tdbefore (resized).jpg

11_tdafter (resized).jpg

You almost can't see the transition from the pf to the pop nest mylar....!?!

Unfortunately, lots of fuzzy brown remains throughout, along lane edges and such. I just can't break it down without ultimate destruction. I need to remind myself this need not be a *perfect* pf, but it is already leagues better and more pleasing than it was... and it will be clean and fun... this is good enough to start replacing the missing art.

*LESSON 3: Replacement*

Lots of bare wood, right? In an intricate piece of artwork to boot. Well, speaking of boots, we can get the red-striped fisherman cat's boot back. First I outline by connecting the lines that were left and implied:

12_outlinebev (resized).jpg

Then I color-match the rest of the boot and fill it in:

14_red2 (resized).jpg

In that picture above, you'll note I also used red to repair the stripes and the seafood wheel. I also keylined other elements and filled in text.

My 10-year-old decided she wanted to get involved with this, so I set her to practice on the "BAD CATS" insert keylines, and the large tail to the left of them. I knew she wouldn't have the learned or practiced brush techniques I do... so those were easy areas for her. The mistakes on the inserts can be easily scraped off and/or hidden by the decals I will eventually make.

I was getting tired by the time I did the fish tail, but the trio of drain kitties are gradually fading back into view:

15_scooplines (resized).jpg

16_draincats (resized).jpg

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

STILL TO COME....

I don't know, this could yet turn into a disaster. But for now the plan is:

- 13yo wants to keyline the missing art (lady cat, pillow cat, fishmouth cat, etc) with pencil first and then try her hand at the paintbrush for same
- 10yo wants to color the fish in the seafood spinner and paint more solid areas
- I need to design decals for the inserts and certain playfield text
- We may change the color on one or more cats to match our own
- (hope to do Python proud either way)

It's going to be a long process.... but why pinball if you can't have some fun with it, right? The fact they want to do this with me at all is VERY gratifying

Sorry for the novella...

#2 1 year ago

I've marked this thread as a Favorite so I'll be following you. Good luck and have fun!

My granddaughter (10) loves my BC, and hitting the center ramp is her favorite: "Meow m'meowmeow!"

#3 1 year ago

Following!

#4 1 year ago

Good luck with this. Will be following.

#5 1 year ago

God luck man!! I can’t wait to see it brought back to life

#6 1 year ago

Nice start! Cant wait to see this completed

#7 1 year ago
Quoted from jmountjoy111:

God luck man!! I can’t wait to see it brought back to life

Ha ha thanks! I finally got that MPU working, and after all that the sound board was blessedly easy. So it's basically a major paint-shop and display-kenstein job effort now. I'm looking forward to working on this with them... trying not to get too far ahead.

Couple busy nights this week, but I think I can get the eldest to pencil her lines in so I can paint them. I might try to find the gray color mix meanwhile. Probably should work on the insert / pf text decals, too.

#8 1 year ago

Great project to tie your kids into the hobby

#9 1 year ago

As a guy with three young daughters (my oldest is 9), I'm really impressed and jealous. I showed her the picture of your daughter and asked why she never helps me work on our pins and her response was "dunno... you like my purple earrings?". Ugh!!

image (resized).jpeg

#10 1 year ago

LOL. Hang in there... lots of pink and purple between mine still - and my 10yo is still very much a purple fashion diva - but the oldest is rapidly leaving the Hello Kitty era behind. Actually, there was almost no transition: about a year ago she wanted me to check out a show she'd been watching and I was wholly unprepared (if shockingly bemused) for it to be anime about cannibal zombies. Like, we're doing this now? OK...? I don't have a problem on principle per se, but whereTF did this come from?!

And then just a week ago she decided she wanted to lop off her hair - minimally trimmed since 1st grade - and go full-on pixie cut. Man, that was tough on me. But her free-spirited confidence as a result was almost inspiring. It's fun to see them happy. They grow up too fast.

I can't say they're too involved with most of my stuff, but I often give them small projects. 13yo has been soldering for years, and I'll probably let the 10yo build the Solenoid Saver board for this machine. Even on the model railroad, I let them build freight cars and paint buildings and repopulate it from time to time. Neither hobby is "their choice" per se - I let them be their own selves - but I hope that by giving them positive, tangible references and interactions with the things I love, they'll forge and retain good memories, learn some skills that might prove useful, and who knows... maybe return to those hobbies someday, or at least maintain appreciation for the quirkier things in life.

#11 1 year ago

Great to see this- I have a 10 and 8 yr old and both get pulled into pinball projects or projects that use old pinball parts. I think pinball is a great way of introducing so many concepts from mechanical engineering to electrical engineering and even physics. I don’t use those words but that’s what you get exposed to and those things run the world. Great to see!

#12 1 year ago

CONTINUING....

Tonight 13yo and I worked on touchups some more. She set to work on penciling the missing art:

BethDet1 (resized).jpg

BethDet2 (resized).jpg

BethOutlines (resized).jpg

I think she did a fantastic job!

While she was doing that, I started patching the drain trio and some of the yellow-orange areas. I was able to mix some really good matches on both the yellow, and yellow-orange shades. It's helpful that the fur spots and keylines will help to mask and mute any discrepancies, but they'd probably look natural anyway. Since the rest of the pf has aged some, I decided not to go "nuclear white", but an off-shade. I think it looks pretty good. Certainly waaaaaay better than before.

DrainCatsStart (resized).jpg

DrainCatsPatch (resized).jpg

FishCatPatch (resized).jpg

It's fun to trace the hand-drawn lines of a proffessional legend like Python Angelo. You quickly learn to adapt techniques that you might not always have considered. In addition, you realize some of that "finished product" was as much randomly arbitrary as it was deliberate. Obviously not every line I redrew is 100% accurate down to the picometer... but it conveys and achieves the same intent.

I told 13 she could do the lines and spots on the "leopard", and I need to fix the cheek on FireFox, but otherwise I'm really pleased with how this turned out.

I also love how exposed woodgrain was artfully used throughout the playfield. Unfortunately the wear in the right drain cat is gonna be hard if not impossible to hide.

WoodGrain (resized).jpg

I promised 13 she could paint the keylines she drew and then fill in some smaller areas, so that will be the next update. 10 gets to do the bulb pads, and maybe some of the larger grey areas... a local legend gave me a tip on which gray to try for a match, so that will hopefully save a lot of time on that part.

I think we're also going to change Pillow-cat a little bit, since so much of him is missing... most of his face and feet is there, but the rest is fair game ha ha

#13 1 year ago

STILL CONTINUING....

Today I picked up some gray and green, and some extra brushes for the girls. The specific shade of gray (by name) that was recommended to me seems to be discontinued... but I found one that was so dang close I am not going to complain! And indeed, once I started applying it for comparison and fill... it was hard to stop. I blocked in the large areas and then worked on detail fill in most of the lower pf areas. Re-lining of course will follow, but I am already astounded at the difference!

But before I got too deep into that, "10" wanted to help, so I let her practice some more on one of the light pads. While she did that, I tested the green for a match, which was just about perfect. She wants to do the other green wheel segment and the spotted cat, so she gets those next...

20180215_195721 (resized).jpg

After she got tired, 13 came back for a quick spell. She lined some of her pencil tracings and displayed far more skill and patience with the brush than I ever would have expected. She then loosened up by working on the leopard spots...

20180215_205806 (resized).jpg

20180215_222459 (resized).jpg

20180215_211439 (resized).jpg

20180215_222441 (resized).jpg

After they both went to bed, I filled more of the gray. Still lots to do, but a lot has been accomplished an a relatively short time. Maybe just 3 hours in on this? I spent far longer than that troubleshooting that blasted MPU, so this is mindlessly easy and enjoyable by comparison! For some reason I find this extremely relaxing. And it's pretty rewarding to see it taking a renewed appearance...

20180215_222512 (resized).jpg

20180215_222428 (resized).jpg

...in fact, with this encouraging progress, and having dodged the expense of a replacement MPU, I decided to order a replacement plastic set. Might seem like overkill considering this game's other rough edges, not to mention our own work won't be perfect, but why not try and spiff it nice? All in due time. Still lots to do yet.

#14 1 year ago

Great job on the touch up so far! Keep up the great work .

#15 1 year ago

Thanks. Still kinda giddy about the gray, it makes a huge improvement. Can't wait to continue... I hope the girls are in the mood for some quick fills after watching Grand Tour tonight

#16 1 year ago

Awesome project keep it up! My daughter loves helping work on the pins.

#17 1 year ago

Last night I worked on decal mockups, and think I got it right. Will have to print on clear to be sure.

One opportunity this offers, concerns the seafood wheel. As made, the numbers are oriented vertically true like a clock face... I get why this was done, but it makes my OCD twitch, because they aren't consistent with the labels on the wheel segments.

So I mocked a radial orientation to match the text labels.

Which do you think looks better?

20180216_194604 (resized).jpg

20180216_194700 (resized).jpg

#18 1 year ago

I prefer the first one. But if you are going with the second one, please rotate the 6 and the 3 .

#19 1 year ago

I’m generally not a fan of altering PF artwork, but I much prefer the way your version looks.

#20 1 year ago

I also prefer the first one.

#21 1 year ago

This is a great project, a game I'd love to own someday!
I prefer the first as well!

#22 1 year ago

I prefer the first (original) number layout. With the second, I find myself thinking "Is that a 6 or a 9?" at first glance.

#23 1 year ago

Great thread! I always have a soft spot for Bad Cats. Such a strange theme. This was the first game I played with my own father and it got me into pinball. Nice to see you share it with your daughters. Good luck on the resto.

#24 1 year ago

Thanks for the comments, everyone. Looks like the "clock face" style wins!

Girls had activities most of the weekend so I didn't get much project time with them. "10" did sneak some time to work on a few more light pads, looks like she got a little overconfident-careless and made a little bit of a mess at the edges, but nothing that can't be fixed.

I mainly did more of the grey fill on the fussier detail areas around the out and drain lanes. Did white fill on Girl, Redstripe, and Cloudball... then the light blue on thee boots, Guitar cat, and seafood wheel. It's coming along.

While on errands I picked up the 5lb Harbor Freight vibratory tumbler and some fine glass bead media. The name for the media is a woeful misnomer - should have just called it "sand". But it did a pretty amazing job cleaning and pre-polishing the posts and other metal bits, in only an hour! Though I think I'd prefer a coarser medium next time.

20180218_202939 (resized).jpg

#25 1 year ago
Quoted from goingincirclez:

We may change the color on one or more cats to match our own
- (hope to do Python proud either way)

will certainly need to see pic of those as well and how they will compare

great thread

#26 1 year ago

Cats are weird. Over the entire time we've lived here, I could have counted on one hand each the number of times either of mine had snuck into the basement workshop. But since this game showed up, they sense something afoot, and are living up to the name. Bruce even leaped onto the pf while I was painting the other night! Earned himself a swift sweepoff for that one.

Shelby

Bruce

I'm thinking their cameos will be a reworked Girl and Pillow cat... as well as the front of the cabinet, since that disaster needs to be addressed somehow anyway.

Not a whole lot of progress meanwhile. Although I did finish the gray fill near the scoops, and also traced the inner seafood wheel. I am going to leave the net handle faded and chipped: it's a good contrast to the renewed Stripe Cat, while paying homage to this game's history and "as found" condition... and my inner-model-railroader is pleased at the more "realistic" appearance, ha ha.

20180220_092601 (resized).jpg

20180220_092618 (resized).jpg

#27 1 year ago

After prepping the machines I'm taking to Louisville Arcade Expo this weekend, I had some time to return to Bad Cats... and so did the girls. We had a great afternoon today. 13 and I spent most of it working together while listening to one of her favorite YouTubers run a charity livestream supporting the Depression & Bipolar Support Alliance - a cause that hits close to home, so I donated a chunk. She helped me tumble the second batch of metal parts and while those were running in the garage, we worked on some of the fussier details on the pf. I whitened the dinner settings and number rings. Then I decided to color the silverware with a silver sharpie: no plastic disposables at this table, cats are supposed to be fancy after all

This time we used Cracked Corn in the tumbler. WOW! I wish I'd been told about that before I spent 3x the price on that glass sand. The Cracked Corn was just as effective in the same amount of time - possibly even better! Also less messy, less hazardous, and smells almost... nice? OTOH I'm amazed at how much of it gets wedged into post holes and crevices.

Anyway... if you missed my real cats above, take another look for reference. I turned the girl cat into Shelby, and 13 did her interpretation of Bruce. I had to use dark gray for Shelby since if I'd used black, it would have been a blob-beast or something. I love 13's interpretation of Bruce's swirls - he actually has a swirly pattern almost like a yin-yang on his flank. So this isn't a purist resto, but I think Python would approve.

BethBruce (resized).jpg

BethBruce2 (resized).jpg

After we were done, I called 10 down from cleaning her room to do the Spot Cat. I filled in the white for guidance first, then let her pick colors for the spots and choose where they went. She did a fantastic job! Afterward I decided to fill his glass with an explanatory "elixir" of sorts Again, hopefully these would've been Python approved. Shame he's not with us anymore.

BevSpot (resized).jpg

After they were done, I removed the fish pond and got my colored Sharpie assortment. Then I and both girls divvied our lucky numbers across the fish, gave my wife the remaining two, and all decorated them like koi. Just for fun and variety.

TrioFish (resized).jpg

TrioFish2 (resized).jpg

So... that's where we're at for now. This is getting dangerously close to ready for... something as a topcoat. I'm still undecided as to what. But with Expo coming up, it'll be a while before I get back to this...

#28 1 year ago

Fish wheel is a huge improvement. Well done.

#29 1 year ago

Enjoying this topic too. What are you and your daughters using for the playfield paint touch ups?

#30 1 year ago

Very Awesome!

#31 1 year ago

What a fun project for the girls! You guys are doing great. How cool will that be to see it done knowing what all went into it.

#32 1 year ago

Thanks for the acknowledgements & compliments, they are much appreciated.

PinballFever, it's been a mix. I prefer to use Createx brand acrylic opaque colors whenever possible, they even mix and blend like a dream. But I'm not above using cheaper "craft" acrylic paints when it makes sense or a color match is readily available. For instance, the gray is an Americana brand craft paint, while the bulb pads are just plain generic craft white in 2 or 3 coats. The lining is all Createx... For that purpose I would highly recommend Createx exclusively as it controls and flows and stays like a dream. As for the other colors, it's been mix and match.

You do need to be careful about thinning the craft paints though... It is required since out of the bottle they tend to be thick and won't spread or hide strokes well... But a little bit of water goes a long way. Createx needs no thinning at all, but some colors and shades can be tough to mix.

Beautiful thing about both types is if you make a mistake, you can gently scrape the dried paint away, or wipe off with water if fresh.

1 week later
#33 1 year ago

So LAX was a blast as always! We were all pretty exhausted, though. Took 3 games and sold 2 of them to defray recent expenditures. Trying to return to Bad Cats, 10yo asked me to work on it late one evening last week, but it wasn't a good time... still had some other things going on.

However, I did finally return to it myself for a couple hours this weekend, to work on more details: I fixed Trash Cat, painted the green fish, and also did some rough fills on the remaining wheel segments. The orange is obviously not the correct match and I knew this when I started, but I wanted to get some paint over the bare wood. I'll mix the proper hue later this week... that shade will be used in several places so I'll have to mix a fair quantity of it.

Also did a lot of fussy detail line work and repair, with lots remaining!

Details1 (resized).jpg

I need to remove the old coating / lettering on the inserts in the seafood wheel. It's yellowed and cracked and ugly. Same on the "Meow Again" insert. Anybody have any specific tips on removing just those areas? It chips with fingernail abrasion but there's probably a better way. I might try Acetone on a swab.

But overall this is getting really really close... close enough to need to start planning a topcoat. I resurrected a thread here (https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/clearcoating-shops-near-louisville-lexington-ky) to see if there's any better local options for a good clearcoat, but it's dead silent! I'd like to do better than Varathane on this... but while I've reasonable success with the Spraymax 2K aerosol 2PAC product, chasing and remaining beholden to the weather due to a forced outdoor setup and prep is not something I look forward to. Anyone have any leads?

At any rate, I'll be setting up the rotisserie to pull the pf to finish the "TOY" cats, and remove the siderails and remaining bits in prep for... whatever topcoat.

That will also allow work on the cabinet. Another pinsider alerted about a 20% ebay coupon last week, so I decided to take the plunge and get the cab decals after all. Have never done decal removal / replacement before - oy vey! 13yo seemed excited for some reason though

#34 1 year ago

That is coming along quite nicely if I do say so myself. Keep it up.

I thought about that 20% off coupon for decals on a data east the Simpsons project I’ve got but I could not find the decals. Oh well. Glad you got a set. This thing is going to be sweet when you’re finished

#35 1 year ago

Tonight I reassembled my RotEzel and pulled the pf... removed most of the remaining bits and put the metal ones in the tumbler. Having the pf out of the cabinet, I can readily see much more touch-up needed, but it's not like I thought it was done!

BCRotisserie (resized).jpg

For clearcoat I'm leaning toward a product called KBS Diamond Clear: https://www.kbs-coatings.com/DiamondFinish-Clear.html It's been used by a few folks in pinball, but not too extensively. There's a thread here: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/kbs-diamond-clearcoat Its advantage seems to be 2PAC quality with the safety and ease of Varathane, although it apparently has its own challenges. I'd like to try the spray product too, but there seems to be conflicting info as to whether its aerosol version is safer than 2PAC / Spraymax2K. I suppose I should contact the manufacturer.

But no matter what I do, I am concerned about two things regarding this Bad Cats playfield:

1) I need to use decals. Which means clear first for a consistent finish, then decal, then clear for seal. I am worried about KBSDC reacting with the decals, especially if I use the spray. Of course, lots of folks have had issues with decals and 2PAC / Spraymax whereas I did not (on my Firepower resto), so... hopefully my past experience will repeat itself.

2) So there's a big hole for the seafood wheel. If I brush the product, that hole will present some issues in the form of new "start edges" that need to be blended. Again, a spray product would negate this but I'm not sold on the concept. Admittedly, brush / rollon is a lot easier for my situation.

Regardless, we still have lots of touchup to do yet, so I have time to decide. Advice is welcome!

~~~~~

You might have noticed in my photos, that the cab is now headless - the decal kit arrived! I clipped them to hang to remove the shipping curl, meanwhile I broke down the cabinet.

20180316_203904 (resized).jpg

Will have to read up on cab decaling - I'm sure the girls would love if I could remove the old ones somewhat intact so they could stick them on their walls or something, but I doubt that's possible

But I can't say I'm too thrilled with the color. The original orange was a hot flourescent that is vivid, whereas the decals are a far more muted, almost burnt hue. They don't really match. Apparently there was some controversy when these were released 3 years ago, and Rick from PPS actually solicited and received some samples from other Bad Cats games and corrected the orange. Just how many variants of these were originally made? For some reason, the photos make the hue difference look much closer than they are in person. The flourescent part - as seen where the BB hinge was - is especially dull in the photos.

20180316_203918 (resized).jpg

#36 1 year ago

Sweet ill be watching this for sure. looking at KBS also as an option, but good to know about the decals. With spray seems there's a lot of setup, like a spray booth and equipment

1 week later
#37 1 year ago

Been a slow couple of weeks on the BC front - birthdays, tournaments, holidays, funerals, and bill-pay gigs will do that sometimes. OH and I brought in another machine to overhaul for a client, which took up most all of my pin time. But we did sneak some work in.

First up, 13 and I worked to see just how hard it would be to remove the decals. Using the $8-with-coupon Harbor Freight heat gun and some steady hand work, it took about 40 minutes to peel one side. It could have gone much quicker, but I was trying to see if we could "preserve" the old ones to repurpose elsewhere for decor. We were essentially successful!

20180403_220944 (resized).jpg

Amazingly, the cabinet beneath is beautiful! I love the maple finish, and there is very little in the way of pocking and chipping to fix. Unfortunately, all of the glue remains... it's dull and not even tacky, but it's there. Honestly, since the finish is so consistent even and smooth, I am not sure if I should try to remove it or not (and how?)... would take a ton of flour at any rate!

20180403_220028 (resized).jpg

Since I have decided to do a full clear, the pop mylar had to come off. This is my first System11 mylar removal, and I'm pleased to say that with the heat gun, it peeled smoothly and easily in seconds. As expected, I lost the insert text... but thankfully, almost none of the painted art. Unfortunately, there was some very bizarre damage to the pf itself:

20180403_211949 (resized).jpg

20180403_211956 (resized).jpg

See that crater next to the BBQ grill? I have no idea what in the world happened there. The mylar just lifted with zero resistance or "warning" chipping, etc. And look at the backside of the mylar:

20180403_212042 (resized).jpg

That's CLEARLY not even wood, but... powder? Putty? A kleenex wad? If I didn't know better, I'd say this PF was damaged and filled at the factory before it was screened... knowing the factory mylar would forever seal it further. So who here knows actual better? I'd really love to know just what happened here.

Anyway... the glue was left behind here as well, which meant it was time to wield my absolute favorite bit of "never would have learned this if not for Pinball" sorcery: Flour + Alcohol.

Yes, flour and alcohol. I think I saw this in a Vid guide and it was so stupidly weird I had to try it... I might have even been one of the first on pinside to do so at the time. It seems so stupid but it makes scientific sense. The flour is so finely granulated that it perfectly coats the rough textured glue surface, and completely neutralizes the adhesive. Simply spread household baking flour on the area, vacuum the excess, and you're left with a dry but dull flat surface:

20180403_212749 (resized).jpg

Then use rubbing alcohol to break down the chemical adhesive bond. You simply dab some on, wait a minute or so, then start rubbing with your fingers. The adhesive binds to the flour and the mess balls up in small boogers.

20180403_215951 (resized).jpg

It really doesn't take too long to cleanly do an area this size... less than an hour all told.

Now all I have to do is fill the gray to match the rest of the painted pf, and touch up the other colors. After I fill the pothole of course. I guess I will have to use wood filler or Bondo there.

20180403_215957 (resized).jpg

#38 1 year ago

I wouldnt recommend installing new decals over top of old adhesive. It tends to rarely go well. Good chance you will end up with failing graphics down the road. Im a decal installer by trade and ive seen this happen many times over the years.
A lot of these older pins were shipped new without the mylar installed and was left up to the operator to install or not. Im guessing that the crater is an old repair someone did on the damaged playfield and then the mylar was installed afterwards.

#39 1 year ago

Yeah, I think I'm going to have a buddy with the Festool sander annihilate that glue once I get "everything" ready. The front needs a bit of fill and repair and sanding anyway.

Superbee, take a look at the earlier pf photos: There was ZERO indication of a defect in that spot... It was under the factory pop mylar in that area. The top side of the removed area shows perfect paint still. It's really bizarre.

1 week later
12
#40 1 year ago

10, 13, and I have all pushed for some final touches in the last few days. 10 did more of the pads and her spot cat; 13 did gray fills and black line touchups; I fixed the pothole with wood epoxy and did more color matching (turns out the stripe color on the Dart and Y cats is a weird greenish-brown - I was so excited to mix a match!). We also served up different beverages on the table: Mello Yello, Wine, Coffee, Milk, Beer, and of course the "Mystery Juice"

It's not 100% CQ laser perfect. But I think 95% of players and even most collectors would be pretty pleased with a BC that looked like this... especially if they know or remember what we started with:

BCmidBefore (resized).jpg

BCmid (resized).jpg

BCtop (resized).jpg

So if I cleared it now (in prep for decals!) nobody would fault me. I mean there's brush strokes and some fuzzy edges with bare pinpricks, but to me that sells the history, charm, and significance of what we did here.

I also had some inspection help!

BCbruceleft (resized).jpg

BCbruce (resized).jpg

BCbrucelook (resized).jpg

I think he's pleased with his cameo

And shout-out too since I happened to be wearing the hoodie: if you're in Louisville, check out RecBar! I've helped them out a little with maintenance and they just expanded again this past Sunday... two of the games on the new floor used to be mine, even. A couple great guys are learning and doing great things for the KY pinball scene. They've even started "little flippers" tournaments to get kids involved!

Anyway, in a few days I'll place a KBS Diamond Clear order and get to work once I have the girls sign under the apron. And so it continues. MAYBE we'll get to play in June...

BC97done2 (resized).jpg

#41 1 year ago

Inspirational.

#42 1 year ago

love the cat cameos!

2 weeks later
#43 1 year ago

Well it's the point of no return: Clearcoating has begun!

20180506_111315 (resized).jpg

20180506_111414 (resized).jpg

20180506_111329 (resized).jpg

20180506_111351 (resized).jpg

That's a quick dual cross-pass of the KBS Diamond Clear *aerosol*. Yes, indoors... I took a chance and added it to my order of the standard stuff and when I read the the can, its formulation was not as toxic nor prescribed as 2PAC... it read like most any other spray paint. Which still isn't ideal, but the weather was nice enough to open up for ventilation and such. For a few quick light passes when everyone should be outside anyway, it's OK.

I used the spray here just to get a "lock coat" down before brushing on the main clear. I hope to get a couple coats of that on today. Hopefully without rushing into disaster...

1 week later
#44 1 year ago

The cats.... they have eyes again!

20180511_010559 (resized).jpg

So the DCF Aerosol is a great product, easy to use and safe... but I wouldn't equate it to Spray Max in terms of sheer thickness and smoothness of coat. Light/mist DCF spray tends to dry satin-y as it doesn't appear to self-level as well as the liquid does. A heavier coat of DCF Aero gives a more solid, smooth finish.

So doing the cross-hatch pattern, I did two mist "locking" coats of spray, then a heavier build coat. This was to lock in the paint. I was very pleased with the results! I then prepped to do a coat with the liquid to experiment with that, before decals. I used a foam roller as recommended by other Pinside users.

Unfortunately, this was a disaster. I never felt that I had flow problems with the roller, but the one I used was too small (apparently) and I had trouble lining up the strokes to blend seamlessly. I had thinned the liquid DCF about 20% and it flowed well, but not well enough to self-level the edges and overlaps. But worst of all, for some reason it fish-eyed, horribly! And I cannot understand why. If I was going to experience fish-eye, I'd have expected this on the original aerosol coats, reacting with the raw original pf surface and all the residues, paints, cleaners, oopsies, and whatnot we put on there. But the aerosol layers were *perfect*! Wiped with naptha, let dry, rolled the liquid, and welcome to craterville.

I guess this method would work for restoring an Orbitor 1?

Anyway. I let it cure for a couple days and then had a buddy with the Festool sander come by and take a crack. We rescued the surface well enough to do decals. The plan now is to lock in the decals with the rest of the aerosol can (about 2 or 3 coats left in there) and then go back to the liquid since I can build it high and the Festool did an amazing job leveling out the original disaster to a recoverable point - I can use it to really pursue perfection on after the final build coats.

But that's enough text. Here's some photos of the girls doing some of the decal work! They'd never had a reason to use decals before... that tech never ceases to amaze me.

20180511_222153 (resized).jpg

20180511_222212 (resized).jpg

20180511_222457 (resized).jpg

20180511_222704 (resized).jpg

20180511_222833 (resized).jpg

20180511_223018 (resized).jpg

20180511_223048_1 (resized).jpg

#45 1 year ago

What a great project this is...

#46 1 year ago
Quoted from g94:

What a great project this is...

Thanks... it's been a lot of slow steady fun. The girls and I don't seem to get breaks all at the same time often, but I'm so gratified when I ask "OK who's ready to help with X" and they're always willing without hesitation

~~~

So yesterday, while the locking coat on the decals cured, 13 and I decaled the cabinet! Well, the sides anyway. A friend's Festool sander made quick work of cabinet prep, which I did first. Then 13 and I used the "wet method" and I have to say it went pretty smoothly.

But after this I will NEVER buy from ClassicArcades ever again.

I already expressed my "disappointing but tolerable" verdict on the color. But I am so glad my desire for instant gratification paid off for once.

See, for the cabinet sides, CA prints registration marks that supposedly key the decals to the corners of the wood, allowing an inch or so of excess around the perimeter. If you lay them on there, they align perfectly. Which would be great if the ART lined up properly!

Insta-Grat had me lay the siderails on "just to see how they'll look eventually" and when the decals were aligned to the marks, and the rails put on, the cat's ear and tail were covered!

20180513_163508 (resized).jpg

In the photo, look at the marks on the white edge, and how far I had to move the decal to clear the side rail. Not expecting this, I'd already trimmed the rear edge at this point so realignment to avoid exposed wood was made tricky.

The left side was just as bad:

20180513_171404 (resized).jpg

Yeah. While this is an easy fix, it would have been a total disaster if I had:

- trimmed the decals straight to the marked edges

- not mocked them with the siderails before application and let them dry...

As for the fix, the nice thing is the exposed area IS in fact hidden by the siderails, except the very leading edge where they curve by the flipper buttons. The proper fix is then to carefully trim the excess decal off the bottom of the cabinet, and then lay this strip over the exposed area on the top and trim again. When you install the siderails, they cover the seam so you'll never notice:

20180513_175332 (resized).jpg

20180513_175316 (resized).jpg

As you can see, the front panel and overall reassembly still remains....

#47 1 year ago
Quoted from goingincirclez:

Thanks... it's been a lot of slow steady fun. The girls and I don't seem to get breaks all at the same time often, but I'm so gratified when I ask "OK who's ready to help with X" and they're always willing without hesitation
~~~
So yesterday, while the locking coat on the decals cured, 13 and I decaled the cabinet! Well, the sides anyway. A friend's Festool sander made quick work of cabinet prep, which I did first. Then 13 and I used the "wet method" and I have to say it went pretty smoothly.
But after this I will NEVER buy from ClassicArcades ever again.
I already expressed my "disappointing but tolerable" verdict on the color. But I am so glad my desire for instant gratification paid off for once.
See, for the cabinet sides, CA prints registration marks that supposedly key the decals to the corners of the wood, allowing an inch or so of excess around the perimeter. If you lay them on there, they align perfectly. Which would be great if the ART lined up properly!
Insta-Grat had me lay the siderails on "just to see how they'll look eventually" and when the decals were aligned to the marks, and the rails put on, the cat's ear and tail were covered!

In the photo, look at the marks on the white edge, and how far I had to move the decal to clear the side rail. Not expecting this, I'd already trimmed the rear edge at this point so realignment to avoid exposed wood was made tricky.
The left side was just as bad:

Yeah. While this is an easy fix, it would have been a total disaster if I had:
- trimmed the decals straight to the marked edges
- not mocked them with the siderails before application and let them dry...
As for the fix, the nice thing is the exposed area IS in fact hidden by the siderails, except the very leading edge where they curve by the flipper buttons. The proper fix is then to carefully trim the excess decal off the bottom of the cabinet, and then lay this strip over the exposed area on the top and trim again. When you install the siderails, they cover the seam so you'll never notice:

As you can see, the front panel and overall reassembly still remains....

Following!

Couple things..... nice to see the kids getting into it! I have a 13 and a 14 boys. I asked the 14 earlier this winter about jumping into and assisting my Fish Tales refurb, he said "no thanks", I was definitely a little disappointed in that.
Go buy an inexpensive random orbital sander, they are 35-40 NIB, they are great to have on hand
I'm following this for sure to learn the do's and do nots as i'm just behind you in my work.

#48 1 year ago
Quoted from northerndude:

Go buy an inexpensive random orbital sander, they are 35-40 NIB, they are great to have on hand

We actually have a decent Bosch purchased for paint prep when we moved. But to be honest I completely forgot about it until I was at my friend's house and saw his Festool, which so many pros here swear by: "15 minutes w/ a Festool vs. an hour with Brand X"... etc. So I figured why not try it? After doing so I have to say: I would prefer the Festool for general stuff, and no way I would trust the Bosch on the playfield for rescuing the roll-clear disaster as we did with the Festool. The tools feel completely different. The Festool is abrasive yet gentle; if you balance (hold) it right it will just float. The Bosch is just your traditional annihilator LOL. Of course I am not a pro, so I'm sure I could make do with the Bosch if I had to. This was more a crime of opportunity

Anyway, cab decals are on, and so the painted head rejoins. Not too shabby:

CabLeft (resized).jpg

CabRight (resized).jpg

Back in the playfield realm, I bought a refurbed Wagner HVLP sprayer, I might try spraying the DiamondClear with it. Kinda nervous about that but if it works out better than rolling it'll be worth it. If not, roller + Festool it is.

1 week later
#49 1 year ago

Well it's officially time to start putting things back together because the clear is done!

After the rolling disaster I bought a refurb Wagner Flexio 890 for $110 on Amazon. I figured the worst that might happen is I ruin its (replaceable for $35) "Detail Finish" gun. Instead I'm pleased to say it worked *wonderfully*!! Probably still a bit of technique and learning curve for me to master yet, but for just winging it I couldn't have asked for better.

Wagner890 (resized).jpg

I thinned the DFC about 25% with KBS #1 Thinner. I sprayed heavy coats of about 5oz of clear (probably 4.5 oz ended up on the pf) using the detail finish gun/nozzle. I promptly ran a bit of Xylene through the sprayer afterward to clean it because any solidified clear would ruin the nozzle. I let each coat cure on the pf for about 3-4 days, after which you'd have to press pretty firm to make a thumbnail dent.

The sprayer creates a lot of very fine mist overspray so you will want to use a respirator even though DFC is fairly mild as VOC solvents go. As for Xylene, don't fuck around with that shit. I wouldn't recommend it: KBS #1 Thinner is a far safer reformulation but I didn't buy enough for cleanup and Xylene was available locally for cheap... live and learn.

Anyway, the Wagner Flexio 890 did a great job in my dumb mitts so I'm sure a pro would do better. This is my first go with the HVLP method.

20180527_162406 copy (resized).jpg

20180527_164604 copy (resized).jpg

20180527_164544 copy (resized).jpg

20180527_164733 copy (resized).jpg

After the final heavy build coat, I cut down with wet 320 grit on the Festool to work on some unleveled inserts and the worst ridges created by the roller overlaps. Then 1000 wet platin, 2000 wet platin, compound, polish, and wax - 10 helped out with the compound - polish - wax part because she liked the banana smells

The final product is not 100% laser-mirror-glass flat... but considering what it looked like originally, AND jut how crater pockmarked it was after the ruinous fisheye in the #8 wheel segment, I will not complain. It's sooo shiny and smooth!

I think for the future, I would recommend the DFC Aerosol. That stuff was great and easy to use, relatively safe with a VOC profile more similar to spray paint instead of 2PAC hazmat, and hassle free. One can did about 3-4 coat passes, so 3 cans would probably suffice. Make it 4 for a hundred bucks and you'd still be pretty reasonable for a DIY job. I'm in it for more than that but this was for learning, and the Wagner sprayer will be useful again - the only thing better than pinball purchases, are "pinball purchases" that can be amortized all around the house

Anyway, reassembly has begun...

20180527_212141 copy (resized).jpg

20180528_195008 copy (resized).jpg

20180528_195018 copy (resized).jpg

20180528_194947 copy (resized).jpg

#50 1 year ago

Great thread - one day I hope to have my son help me do a restoration.

Promoted items from the Pinside Marketplace
From: $ 16.95
$ 19.99
$ 14.99
Electronics
PinballElectronics.com
From: $ 129.10
Cabinet - Sound/Speakers
PinWoofer
$ 45.99
Eproms
Matt's Basement Arcade
$ 11.95
Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
ULEKstore
From: $ 40.00
Cabinet - Other
Rock Custom Pinball
$ 29.99
Cabinet - Sound/Speakers
Lighted Pinball Mods
$ 99.00
Gameroom - Decorations
Pinball Sales
From: $ 18.00
Apparel - Men
Pinside Shop
There are 78 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.

Hey there! Got a moment?

Great to see you're enjoying Pinside! Did you know Pinside is able to run thanks to donations from our visitors? Please donate to Pinside, support the site and get anext to your username to show for it! Donate to Pinside