(Topic ID: 265768)

My Twilight Zone Restoration in the Twight Zone *COMPLETED*


By uncivil_engineer

9 months ago



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  • 85 posts
  • 22 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 55 days ago by HitLines
  • Topic is favorited by 25 Pinsiders

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There are 85 posts in this topic. You are on page 2 of 2.
#51 5 months ago

I apologize, I am a bit behind in my documentation on my restoration.

So I nearly have the apron completed! I got all the rust cleaned off, and applied bondo over the resulting pitting.

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I then sanded it and primed it. After another quick round with the sand paper, I went ahead and put a heavy coat of single stage automotive paint on it (the same stuff I used on the cabinet). The reason I used a heavy coat was because I knew my finish would get dust in it because I didn’t have a paint booth available. So it had to have enough paint on it to allow me to polish the dust out of the finish. As I predicted, the initial coat did have dust in it..

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So then I set in with 1500 grit, 2500 grit, and 3000 grit sand paper, followed by some polishing with #3 and #2 novus.
The results were pretty nice looking!

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I still have some sanding work to do around the edges of the apron where there was some runs in the paint, and after that I will apply the decals I got for the apron.

#52 5 months ago

I turned my attention to the gumball machine this week as well. It was overall in ok shape. I did give all the parts a bath in the sonic clearner, and I did do some repairs to the plastic mounts of the housing. The rear mounts where broken off the gumball machine when I took the old playfield apart. I went ahead and glued the mounts back on the plastic housing, and then put a small area of fiberglass over each mount to reinforce them. Hopefully this will allow the gumball machine to be removed in the future without the mounts breaking again.

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I got it mounted backup, and I am happy to report that the gumball machine is working, and the machine can load it up from the auto shooter.

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#53 5 months ago

More progress to report from yesterday. The power playfield is completed and installed! As you can see, I am still working my way through the missing hardware issues (I had to resort to hex head screws for the power exit optos). I also discovered I was missing the harness to the overhead light and flasher. I made a new one, but I hope no one looks too closely at the wire colors I used.

As you can see, I am also missing some of the switch covers. Anyone have some they want to sell?
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#54 5 months ago

I got the color DMD and aftermarket speakers installed today. I finally get to hear all the music and not just my sub woofer. It sound sooo nice. You don’t have to buy a full up aftermarket speaker set to get good sound out of these machines. I’ve followed this guide: http://www.dziedzic.us/wpc_speaker_replacement.html. and had very good results.

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1 week later
#55 5 months ago

So the playfield is complete! But that doesn’t mean it’s done however. I still have a lot of bugs to work out of everything.
So far I’ve identified the following issues:
1. The rocket switch sometimes blocks the ball from settling into place.
2. I’ve got one kicker not working
3. One jet bumper does work consistently.
4. The trough kick out tends to bounce off the post and back into the trough.
5. I’m still dealing with the power diverter. It now works consistently, but I still feel like the push rod is too short. I have enough piano wire around I may try to make my own slightly longer rod.
6. The clock has one stripped mounting hole. I’m hoping to fix this with a little glue. Then I hope I can get the clock to sit straighter than it currently does.
7. I used amber LEDS in some of the inserts. I’m not happy with the way they turned out, especially in the greed targets and the spiral inserts.

I’m still debating how I’m going to address the coin door. That’s next on the agenda.

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#56 5 months ago

For Amber inserts I end up using Pink frosted LEDs. Try it, somehow it works and looks better than an amber LED in an amber inserts. A friend of mine showed me that trick.....

#57 5 months ago
Quoted from AUKraut:

For Amber inserts I end up using Pink frosted LEDs. Try it, somehow it works and looks better than an amber LED in an amber inserts. A friend of mine showed me that trick.....

I may have to order some and give that a try. The inserts look washed out and don’t pop like the rest of my insert lights.

#58 5 months ago

I think I’ve got the diverter figured out. The stock rod was 0.072” diameter wire, and the closest thing I had in my shop was 0.062”. I made a replacement push rod that had the bend about 3/8” further down the rod. I wish I’d taken a picture of it now....

I installed it, and I the catch basket now set much more down on the wireform. Let’s hope the thinner wire holds up ok.

1 week later
#59 4 months ago

Ok, I think I may have figured out the power diverter (fingers crossed). I changed out the coil sleeve for a new one. The previous sleeve was new, but it was a white plastic material that came with the coil. I changed it out for a tan replacement I had on hand. I'm hoping in a hundred or so games, I don't have the same problem again.

And now on to the coin door.
The machine originally had a three coin slot door, and I intend to use a three slot door on my restored TZ. In the menagerie of parts I got with this machine, there is almost enough parts to make a three slot coin door. However, to say the least, there is some assembly required.

So here is what I have to work with:
1. a good two slot door skin with frame.
2. a three slot slot door skin with a hole drilled in the middle for a lock.
3. a salvageable later WPC two slot door with a good wiring harness. Ive been using this for testing purposes because it has all the needed test buttons in good working condition.

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So here is my plan: I am going to cut apart the the area around the coin slot opening off the bad three slot skin to use it as a template to cut the needed middle slot into my good two slot skin. I will then use parts and wiring off the WPC two slot door to make a good three slot door.

The cutting of the three slot door went well. I used a combination of an air cut off saw, and a jig saw with metal cutting blade to cut the openings out. I then clamped it over the existing two slot door, and used it as a template to layout all the holes I would need.
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The three slot benzel didn't fit at first. I had to spend some time with a couple of files to get the holes opened up enough to get it to lay flat, but it did finally give way to me, and I now have a nice three hole door skin, almost ready for stripping and painting.
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#60 4 months ago

So I did paint my coin door today, and while waiting for the paint to cure our, I decided to finish up my apron.

I was going to use the commonly available decals for this effort, but since the decals were only two color (blue and white), I decided to use my Cameo Silhouette 3 to cut the graphic and then I applied them with transfer tape.

I started by scanning my existing apron, and using the outline tools in Cameo Studio to creat a blue file, and a white file.

I’ve done a few aprons using this method, and the hardest part is removing the vinyl from the backing sheets from around fine line work, especially lettering. Experience has taught me to go very slow when working the material around the letters. Below is the final blue cut pieces ready for transfer tape.9F8DA71D-F3A4-4416-94B8-E4BB9ECAEEA4 (resized).jpegA40E91E2-FD9F-42F2-84E1-43FB633B1D61 (resized).jpeg2C2465DD-7997-4A38-8E13-1B5A357CA251 (resized).jpeg

I also did a white cut for the script in the middle of the apron.

I think it is easiest to work with the transfer tape if you have a large glass surface to work on, oh like the glass over a pinball playfield. So today my TAF got to pull duty as a work bench.

The first thing I did was cover each of the cut vinyl pieces with transfer tape.016AEDA5-31B6-40DF-8765-FB41189C3C6F (resized).jpeg

Then you can then place the vinyl transfer tape combo on the apron. You have to take care to get the alignment right before you press down on the combo to get the vinyl to stick.87260F5B-4397-425D-8FE0-09F2595FC3A5 (resized).jpeg

You then have to very carefully pull the transfer tape off the apron. You will need to have a hobby knife handy while doing this to help some of vinyl release from the tape. This is especially true around the lettering. It took me about 30 minutes to get all three blue pieces on.
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I left some fine blue lines around the middle piece to serve as a reference mark for the white vinyl. Both pieces had the same mark. I just had to line them up to get a good match.7E75BE7B-50C9-4B79-86E8-9D89452AC5DD (resized).jpeg34584E36-337B-4912-B9B4-9ABA8896EFA7 (resized).jpeg

The apron turned out pretty nice. The only mistake I made was the middle section got a little off center, but I’ve seen factory aprons that looked worse. It does look a lot better than my banged up original.1891459F-376D-4CD3-954F-F04CBE0C33A3 (resized).jpeg

#61 4 months ago

I liked the re-use of the coin doors - in the past I've thought about cutting the middle coin slot in a skin, so really like your template idea.

And thanks for sharing how you created your apron decal - most impressive!!

#62 4 months ago

Well, the coin door is nearly done...

I got it painted and installed some nice looking clear inserts. Everything seem to go well with the installation until I tried to use the new diagnostic buttons. I have a couple of them that don't work. So I will have to pull it out again to do some diagnostics.

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#63 4 months ago

I like the clear button look on that.

#64 4 months ago

Well I’m getting down to final stages of this one. I took on the back box light panel this weekend. The panel itself was in bad shape, and showed some signs of water damage.98B55B97-F8C9-4A00-A34E-7719535E8EA8 (resized).jpeg
I’ve found the best way to clean these up is to remove the sockets and sand the board with my DA sander using 400 grit paper. It won’t remove all the discoloring, but it does make quite a difference.

I printed out new switch and light matrix charts and put them on prior to reinstalling the back box lighting harness (which got a nice bath in the sonic cleaner).
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I repainted the front with flat white, it turned out pretty well. It did take a little fiddling with the adjustments to get the back panel to clear the color DMD, but it did fit.
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It was at this point I discovered I was out of 555 GI led bulbs, so the full test with the translite will have to wait, but here is the preview anyway.1C4A937F-B8D9-4F55-82D0-901E1DDB5BD2 (resized).jpeg

I can tell you right now a mirrored backglass for this machine is soooo tempting.

1 week later
#65 4 months ago

Well I had that one last part finally come in. I could not resist the NOS clock assembly that was put up for sale a few weeks ago in the TZ game thread.F2DC61ED-DAF7-41DF-BDC5-5BF81A22A869 (resized).jpegA5FAAFBB-5B45-48CA-BF02-2694D35C47D4 (resized).jpeg6C7EDBE9-0992-4696-BB6F-FA2AAE19EF41 (resized).jpeg

The only thing it was missing was the opto board, and I had a new after market board I was using in my existing clock. So that got installed today.90AA30B6-2C85-4E9F-A097-3F5219DD1728 (resized).jpeg

#66 4 months ago

Great to see that you picked it up and have put it straight to use - looks fantastic and really caps off your resto

#67 4 months ago

Great.... Now I have to buy clear coin door buttons!

#68 4 months ago

Glad you picked up that clock. I was thinking about it as I have my own scratch build which I plan to start this fall. I have most of the clock already and so it didn't make sense for me but glad it found a good home!

The machine looks great by the way! Making me excited to get to my project

3 weeks later
#69 3 months ago

Well I’m closing the books on this one. I’ve put just over 100 plays on since I finished her, and I think I have all most of the bugs worked out. I’ve got just two issues left I am going to address.

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First, even with the non-ghosting LEDs installed and the H roms, I still have issues with some the lights staying on. I am thinking about putting an LED OCD in it.

Second, the bare mini-playfield switches still big me. In the next group buy from pinball.center I am going to try to get a set of low profile mini-switches.

I’m planning on keeping this game for a while, so I can take my time getting these last few items taken care of.
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A special thanks to my friend Adam for the nice cover.

So what’s my next project? I’m still deciding.. but i am leaning towards doing a matched set.
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#70 3 months ago

Great work! That NOS clock is the cherry on top. Hope you kept the WMS box!

#71 3 months ago

Did you keep track of what this project cost you?

#72 3 months ago

Looks spectacular - well done!!

#73 3 months ago
Quoted from seenev:

Did you keep track of what this project cost you?

Yes, unfortunately I do, and I hope my Wife never sees it. Lets just say for what I have got into this, I could have bought a nice unrestored example.

#74 3 months ago
Quoted from uncivil_engineer:

Yes, unfortunately I do, and I hope my Wife never sees it. Lets just say for what I have got into this, I could have bought a nice unrestored example.

It looks great. If CGC did a remake it would be hard to pass up. My first pin was a TZ and I wish I could have kept it. One of the greatest games ever.

#75 3 months ago

Great stuff Alan. I told you what your next project should be. Bally Space Invaders. You'll love it and so will I.

#76 3 months ago
Quoted from punkin:

Great stuff Alan. I told you what your next project should be. Bally Space Invaders. You'll love it and so will I.

Finding a donor for a Space Invaders has proven to be challenging. Ive kept my eyes open, but so far nothing has popped up on the west coast. Right now my restoration candidate are an Addams Family or a Fire Power.

#77 3 months ago

Good on ya mate. Looking forward to your next project in any case.

#78 3 months ago
Quoted from uncivil_engineer:

Finding a donor for a Space Invaders has proven to be challenging. Ive kept my eyes open, but so far nothing has popped up on the west coast. Right now my restoration candidate are an Addams Family or a Fire Power.

Go the Firepower - such a classic machine and great to see them being restored

1 month later
#79 63 days ago

Just a short post script. I finally got my low profile switches from Germany! This makes the power playfield look so much cleaner.

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#80 63 days ago
Quoted from uncivil_engineer:

Just a short post script. I finally got my low profile switches from Germany! This makes the power playfield look so much cleaner.
[quoted image]

How would you compare them to the original microswitches in regards to sensitivity? Do they activate with the same ball force or more often?

#81 63 days ago
Quoted from Manny65:

How would you compare them to the original microswitches in regards to sensitivity? Do they activate with the same ball force or more often?

They are adjustable. I love mine.

#82 63 days ago
Quoted from fiberdude120:

They are adjustable. I love mine.

Hello, where can I purchase the low pro switches? thx

#84 63 days ago
Quoted from misfitdart:

Hello, where can I purchase the low pro switches? thx

I picked mine up at a show from Great Lakes Modular.

1 week later
#85 55 days ago

Beautiful work. That's such a nice TZ.

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