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(Topic ID: 246769)

My 1st Restoration: Mata Hari with a Hardtop


By HoakyPoaky

1 year ago



Topic Stats

  • 284 posts
  • 36 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 8 months ago by Dono
  • Topic is favorited by 43 Pinsiders

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Topic poll

“Which alternative color scheme do you prefer? See Post #17”

  • Magenta base 2 votes
    5%
  • Red base 1 vote
    2%
  • Purple base 4 votes
    9%
  • Keep the original color scheme 36 votes
    84%

(43 votes)

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There are 284 posts in this topic. You are on page 6 of 6.
#251 8 months ago

hoakypoaky, you and I must be walking a similar path:

I used Comet LEDs as well. They're local to me (they're in Boulder, CO and I live in Broomfield, about 12 miles away) and discovered them after meeting co-owner Ryan at a local tournament a couple years ago. Now I bump into him at all sorts of tournaments and shows in the Denver area - they're really nice people over there at Comet. Best of all....since they're just across town, buying from them online I get next day shipping at USPS First Class pricing unless I drive over there to pick up my order.

After doing the hardtop last year, I went with 2SMD Cool Whites for the topside GI and 2SMD Natural Whites for the white inserts and color matched the other inserts. Like you, I put a different color (Blue for me) behind the 5x insert because I wanted it to stand out. I just did the same color matching (Green 2x, Yellow 3x, Blue 5x) on my Black Jack project last night.

I also put an RGB color changing LED behind the candelabra and the baron's head on the backglass (saw and liked that on Todd Tuckey's TNT MH video) and another RGB for the credit light on the apron.

I also went with the disc LEDs in the pop bumpers....I too like they way they illuminate the bumper bodies along with the cap (I did the same in the pop bumpers for Black Jack and the one pop in my Black Knight). And to top off that coincidence, I also switched the pop bumper sockets to 555 when I rebuilt them! Love the bayonets for inserts and GIs, hate them in pop bumpers.

Last month, I decided to try #47 incans for the MH topside GI and I must say, I really, really like that look. While the Cool White LEDs were nice, the #47 incans really brightened up the playfield without being overwhelming. I think I'm going to stick with that....they don't run as hot as #44's and since this is HUO and turned on for only a few hours several times a week, I'm not too worried about warping or marking up the plastics with burn spots.

Looking forward to seeing more photos when you complete your project. I'd take some shots of mine with the "updated" #47 incans topside but not sure a photo would capture how good it really looks.

#252 8 months ago

Yes similar path for sure! I try to stay with the general guideline that cool white looks best in blue/green hued games (like Embryon) & warm/sunlight white looks best in red/orange/yellow hued games (like Mata Hari or Flash Gordon). I think it going to look really nice when it's all finished. Most my games have cool white in the GI & I just wanted that warm light classic look for MH. It's going to look nice next to my Old Chicago.

I'm just wondering what the lighting effect will be on the underside of the disc LEDs in the pops. I'm hoping the pop housing is lit nicely & throws some light onto the playfield around the pops, but with all that's been crammed inside them I'm not sure how it will look. We'll see I guess.

Hopefully I will be done this week & get to install the playfield on Sunday.

#253 8 months ago
Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

Yes similar path for sure! I try to stay with the general guideline that cool white looks best in blue/green hued games (like Embryon) & warm/sunlight white looks best in red/orange/yellow hued games (like Mata Hari or Flash Gordon). I think it going to look really nice when it's all finished. Most my games have cool white in the GI & I just wanted that warm light classic look for MH. It's going to look nice next to my Old Chicago.
I'm just wondering what the lighting effect will be on the underside of the disc LEDs in the pops. I'm hoping the pop housing is lit nicely & throws some light onto the playfield around the pops, but with all that's been crammed inside them I'm not sure how it will look. We'll see I guess.
Hopefully I will be done this week & get to install the playfield on Sunday.

I have warm Comets in my Mata Hari and Sunlights in my Shangri La, they are right next to each other and the Sunlights almost look like Cool White Next to the Warms. I would recommend Warm for sure for that classic look.

#254 8 months ago

A picture doesn't do it justice (it looks much cleaner and clearer in person), but here's a shot of my hardtop with the #47 incans I put in this week for the playfield GI replacing the cool white LEDs I've had for the last 10 months. I've got natural white LEDs for the inserts and pop bumpers.

incans-gi (resized).JPG
#255 8 months ago

Looks outstanding. That’s where it’s at on this game. Can’t wait to finally flip mine.

Here’s what I was saying yesterday. The new 555 sockets are too tall with the disc installed to fit the cap on, so I had to twist & angle it slightly within the housing. I made sure the lead wires aren’t touching the mount screws, so I think it will be fine. If it was a bigger cap with more space this wouldn’t be an issue.
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#256 8 months ago
Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

So one of the issues with a hardtop is that it raises the surface of the playfield a few millimeters... So I removed them, cut them down to 1/4 inch wide & then put back in place. The switches fit & the targets are raised & level with the hardtop. It should work but I think I may have to adjust those drop switches later.
[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

Perfect solution; I was thinking about doing this to my drop target bank as the playfield clearcoat lowers the drops just like your hardtop... I'll follow your suggestion.

#257 8 months ago
Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

So one of the issues with a hardtop is that it raises the surface of the playfield a few millimeters... So I removed them, cut them down to 1/4 inch wide & then put back in place. The switches fit & the targets are raised & level with the hardtop. It should work but I think I may have to adjust those drop switches later.
[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

Perfect solution; I was thinking about doing this to my drop target bank as the playfield clearcoat lowers the drops just like your hardtop... I'll follow your suggestion.

Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

As far as the pops go, I decided awhile back to replace the old 44 bulb fixtures. I've found that old style can be difficult to get good contacts with on other titles, and can limit what type of bulb you can put under the cap. So I purchased 555 fixtures months ago & now I'm been installing them this week....

The pops are not fun to rebuild.

Looking forward to pics of the pops!

#258 8 months ago

Anyone have any suggestions for cleaning their original plastics? I really haven't looked at them since I put in the bag months ago, but I remember thinking they looked nice enough & didn't need to be replaced.

#259 8 months ago

Less than 24 hours until she’s completed

Just have to adjust all the switches, drop the playfield in the cabinet, attach the apron, turn the switch & watch her come to life. Big day tomorrow!

In hindsight I should have bought a plastic replacement set. The originals are pretty yellowed & scratched. See how it looks tomorrow.

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#260 8 months ago
Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

Anyone have any suggestions for cleaning their original plastics? I really haven't looked at them since I put in the bag months ago, but I remember thinking they looked nice enough & didn't need to be replaced.

Novus 1 and 2 works great (it's a plastic polish, after all) - just don't rub too hard on the bottom part. I start with 1 and if the stubborn brown stuff doesn't come off I'll go to 2, but VERY lightly. You really don't want to remove anything other than the dirt.

I bet dish soap would work too, followed by the novus 1 to get the soap residue off, but I haven't tried that. Dish soap is pretty mild as far as cleaners go.

11
#261 8 months ago

And it’s finished! 6+ months finally over, but man, what a payoff Just looks incredible in personn& it plays even better. Glad I decided to install the hardtop. Couldn’t be happier.

Only had an issue with one of the switches. Considering all that was swapped out, cleaned, rewired or replaced on this machine, I think it’s a miracle that I didn’t make any major mistakes. Also had to swap out the sunlight bulbs for warm white. The sunlights just didn’t look right. Warm was definitely the way to go.

Great learning experience for me & I’m looking forward to my next restore. With all the time & money I invested in this, the next project will have to be for a game that’s really high on my wishlist. Or perhaps a retheme project? We shall see. Somebody sell me a Stern Cheetah or Quicksilver!
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#262 8 months ago

I think I’m going to replace the plastics with a new set though. And I need to track down the link to all the cards for the apron & inside the backbox so I can reprint them on heavy card stock.

#263 8 months ago

First solo game

#264 8 months ago
Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

I think I’m going to replace the plastics with a new set though. And I need to track down the link to all the cards for the apron & inside the backbox so I can reprint them on heavy card stock.

Beautiful job, hoakypoaky! She looks GREAT!!

Here's the link to the backbox cards if you haven't found it yet: http://www.pinballrebel.com/pinball/cards/Backbox_cards.htm

#265 8 months ago

Oh thanks for the link!

#266 8 months ago
Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

First solo game

That's how a lot of my MH games go....one epic ball, and two quick drains out of my control.

A few Q's for you....

1 - Are you using a red filter in front of the Credit and Ball in Play display or is the display itself red? I kinda like that!
2 - I'm assuming you're playing the game in your garage? How are you able to make everything around the game appear black so that the focus is on the game?
3 - How is your camera positioned? It captures everything....entire playfield and backbox displays. Seems like it would be right in your face while you're trying to play. I'd like to try to film some of my games the same way.

Thanx....

#267 8 months ago
Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

First solo game

Thanks for the video - looks and sounds great!
-mof

#268 8 months ago
Quoted from Mathazar:

That's how a lot of my MH games go....one epic ball, and two quick drains out of my control.
A few Q's for you....
1 - Are you using a red filter in front of the Credit and Ball in Play display or is the display itself red? I kinda like that!
2 - I'm assuming you're playing the game in your garage? How are you able to make everything around the game appear black so that the focus is on the game?
3 - How is your camera positioned? It captures everything....entire playfield and backbox displays. Seems like it would be right in your face while you're trying to play. I'd like to try to film some of my games the same way.
Thanx....

It’s the UNO LED displays with white digits. I just ordered a bunch of colored gel inserts (orange, red, yellow & pink) and tested them out. I liked the yellow best, so I thought I’d mix it up with red on the credit display. Very easy to swap the gel inserts.

Yeah it was setup in the garage with all the lights turned off. I had my iPhone setup on a tripod in front of the game. I had to stand way behind it & bend over to reach the flipper buttons. Not ideal for playing or recording but I just wanted to have one good ball

#269 8 months ago

Something to consider for the new plastics.

https://www.pinbits.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=27&products_id=609&zenid=f9svtqrlm4mf3qg43mgtf6dii1

Love the blinkers in the backbox, nice touch!

#270 8 months ago

Wow what a beauty! I have been following this thread for a long time, kinda sorry to see it stop!

Great job for a well-deserved game!

#271 8 months ago

Congratulations! It looks great. These projects always eat a ton of time (which many people will for some reason expect to receive mostly as a gift if/when you decide to sell it). Don’t fall for that. Also, the next one will go smoother and faster and probably turn out even better. Isn’t it great to play something that looks and plays SO much better than before?

#272 8 months ago

Looks awesome!

About the plastics- since it's a one level game, replacing them at any time will be a breeze

#273 8 months ago

Beautiful job! How do you like those Comet pop bumper leds? I was thinking of trying them. I still have the bayonet style sockets inside the pops so I’m not sure they will fit.

#274 8 months ago
Quoted from pinheadpierre:

Congratulations! It looks great. These projects always eat a ton of time (which many people will for some reason expect to receive mostly as a gift if/when you decide to sell it). Don’t fall for that. Also, the next one will go smoother and faster and probably turn out even better. Isn’t it great to play something that looks and plays SO much better than before?

Yeah thanks man! It's like a brand NIB machine now & it was worth the effort. I'm planning on holding onto this one for a long time, which is why I didn't mind sinking so much money into it. Everything I learned will definitely make the next one go much faster. Now I'm wishing I still had that Seawitch

#275 8 months ago
Quoted from phillyfan64:

Beautiful job! How do you like those Comet pop bumper leds? I was thinking of trying them. I still have the bayonet style sockets inside the pops so I’m not sure they will fit.

I've got wedge Comet LED discs in my MH pops and bayonet Comet LED discs in my Black Jack pops. Both fit, but the bayonet is slightly tighter.

#276 8 months ago

mathazar mrm_4

Curious what settings you guy have your MH set at. I set it up for 3-ball with the liberal standard settings that the manual suggested, but I think I'm going to switch the awards to conservative settings.

I like setting my games up as hard as possible, and since I kept the displays at 6 digits, I want to make it as hard as possible to roll the game. I'll have to reread the manual when I get home tonight.

#277 8 months ago

If I had a Nitro Ground Shaker to go in a row with my Old Chicago & Mata Hari, that would be a pretty kick ass looking Dave Christensen lineup too.

#278 8 months ago
Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

mathazar mrm_4
Curious what settings you guy have your MH set at. I set it up for 3-ball with the liberal standard settings that the manual suggested, but I think I'm going to switch the awards to conservative settings.
I like setting my games up as hard as possible, and since I kept the displays at 6 digits, I want to make it as hard as possible to roll the game. I'll have to reread the manual when I get home tonight.

Sorry about the glare!

I set mine up to match these cards.

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#279 8 months ago
Quoted from mrm_4:

Sorry about the glare!
I set mine up to match these cards.[quoted image][quoted image]

Where's the link to those apron cards? I can't seem to find them now. Specifically the instruction cards. Also curious what paper stock you printed them on.

EDIT: I just found them on IPDB

#280 8 months ago

I prefer to have the first ball that lands in the saucer score 3000 and the second one score 2x. Makes is a little harder.

#281 8 months ago
Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

Where's the link to those apron cards? I can't seem to find them now. Specifically the instruction cards. Also curious what paper stock you printed them on.
EDIT: I just found them on IPDB

I used 90lb Wausau premium card stock to print out my apron cards. I bought a sheet of PEG plastic a while back to use as shims for ramps, drop targets, etc. to level areas of the playfield after the hard tops go in. That PEG plastic is opaque when the peelable backing is still on it, so it works well under the left apron card so that there's no discernible glow under the card coming from the credit bulb behind it.

#282 8 months ago
Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

mathazar mrm_4
Curious what settings you guy have your MH set at. I set it up for 3-ball with the liberal standard settings that the manual suggested, but I think I'm going to switch the awards to conservative settings.
I like setting my games up as hard as possible, and since I kept the displays at 6 digits, I want to make it as hard as possible to roll the game. I'll have to reread the manual when I get home tonight.

I'm also at 3-ball on MH with conservative settings. I had it on 5-ball / liberal at first, mainly for my son, but I kept rolling over the 6 digit display regularly so I changed it about 8 months ago. I've only rolled it over twice since then (maybe 150-200 games).

#283 8 months ago

Wow - you seen this yet? https://pinside.com/pinball/market/classifieds/ad/92099

Insane price, but the EM versions of MH are really rare and this one looks to be in very nice shape.

#284 8 months ago
Quoted from Mathazar:

Wow - you seen this yet? https://pinside.com/pinball/market/classifieds/ad/92099
Insane price, but the EM versions of MH are really rare and this one looks to be in very nice shape.

Interesting... not too shocked at the price, given the demand and rarity of the game. So glad I have one, it was a bear to restore!

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