(Topic ID: 254186)

New Stern, Weak Flipper


By Mach5Amps

43 days ago



Topic Stats

  • 38 posts
  • 17 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 41 days ago by Dent00
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders

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paw (resized).JPG
nub (resized).jpg
flipper (resized).jpg

#1 43 days ago

Hi. I am new to this, and my first ever pin was delivered last week. It's been set up and played daily since (by me or my family).

Out of the box, it was good. However, a couple days into it, the right flipper seemed sorta weak. I had to leave for three days, and when I got home, it is seemingly worse.

Now, the right flipper barely has the muscle to shoot up a ramp. It also occasionally sticks in the up position (which my daughter said hadn't happened while I was gone, so new as of last night).

It was a NiB AC/DC Prem. VE, and has been out of the box for 8 days.

Any suggestions would be awesome (the more detailed, the better). I'd love to fix this thing tonight, as I have to leave for the weekend, and would rather not have to tell my kids that the new pin is out of order.

Thanks!

#2 43 days ago

Check mechanical issues first. Does it move freely by hand with the power off? Anything binding? Is the coil sleeve good. It should be if it is new, but you never know. Is the flipper attached firmly to the arm that connects to the plunger. There are likely a couple of nuts you tighten with a hex screw. Are they adequately holding the flipper or have they come loose?

#3 43 days ago

Being a new Stern I would definitely check the coil stops (they have had quite a problem with these) they are at the far end of the coil assembly check to be sure the rivet in the center is present and tight not wiggling around.

#4 43 days ago

When you lift up on the flipper (90 degrees from the playfield) is there any play or is it tight? There should be a little play and a gap around the thickness of a credit card between the flipper base and bushing . Stern is notorious for installing these with no play and making them too tight. I would also make sure they installed a coil sleeve which they have been known to forget.

#5 43 days ago

Check that the coil stop didn’t come apart, with the stop itself moving around in the sleeve.

Happened to a friends JP about a few weeks or so after he got it and apparently not hugely uncommon. His distro got him a free replacement.

#6 43 days ago

Cool. Thanks for the suggestions. I'll check it all out tonight (I'm keeping a list if anyone wants to add anything else).

Quoted from BoJo:

When you lift up on the flipper (90 degrees from the playfield) is there any play or is it tight? There should be a little play and a gap around the thickness of a credit card between the flipper base and bushing . Stern is notorious for installing these with no play and making them too tight.

To address this, do I loosen the set screw on the arm that connects the flipper's shaft to the plunger linkage - and then just add a little play?

If it takes parts to address the issue, I guess it'll be down for the weekend. Coil stop and sleeve were cheap, so I just now preemptively ordered parts (was placing a mod order anyway). If it doesn't take them to fix this issue, I'll just keep them on-hand so that I'll have them whenever I do need them.

Thanks!

#7 43 days ago

Look at coil stop and compare against the other. Is the brass thing in the middle missing? I'd bet 10-1 it popped out. To remove it you only need to remove the two large screws in the coil stop. Apply a little force and they will come out. Order a pair of new one from whoever you like, Marcospec, Pinballlife, etc. Stern has a bad batch.

#8 43 days ago

Borrowed from Vids guide-

You can see where the coil stop is- you just need to unbolt it. 2 screws. Then does it look kinda like the second pic, or is the center part missing?
flipper (resized).jpg
nub (resized).jpg

#9 43 days ago

...or call your distro and have him fix it...

#10 43 days ago
Quoted from spfxted:

...or call your distro and have him fix it...

This way would be great too- if they need to be replaced, your distributor should have some on hand.

#11 43 days ago

I didn't realize there were so many issues with Stern coil stops.

And, now that I see that picture, I am reminded that the flipper is attached with a clamp and a regular nut that tightens it. Sorry, OP, for misleading you about the hex nuts.

I would check to make sure the flipper is firmly clamped in.

#12 43 days ago

If you get ambitious, you could get this flipper rebuild kit and install all new parts.
It sure made a big difference on my machine.
If you can get your distributor to do all that for you, more power to you...
https://www.pinballlife.com/new-style-flipper-rebuild-kit-left-and-right-flippers-for-sternsega.html

#13 43 days ago

Thanks for all the help. I just finished my investigation.

There is no coil sleeve in the right flipper assembly.

Quoted from BoJo:

I would also make sure they installed a coil sleeve which they have been known to forget.

BoJo - I'd by you a beer if you were local. You called it!

Part is on order. Thanks all!

#14 43 days ago
Quoted from Mach5Amps:

Thanks for all the help. I just finished my investigation.
There is no coil sleeve in the right flipper assembly.

BoJo - I'd by you a beer if you were local. You called it!
Part is on order. Thanks all!

Wait. What? You're saying that the plunger was just flapping around inside the coil... naked?

Pretty amazing!

#15 43 days ago

Great job Stern...

#16 43 days ago

No coil sleeve? "Hilarious"!

#17 43 days ago
Quoted from cjchand:

Wait. What? You're saying that the plunger was just flapping around inside the coil... naked?
Pretty amazing!

Flippy-flapping. Wiggle-waggling. In and out, free and loose, like a... Wait. I don't think I'm allowed to say that.

Disappointed. But, I can't wait to fix it, so I can play again. Cause it's awesome.

#18 43 days ago

That’s nuts!

#19 43 days ago
Quoted from Mach5Amps:

Flippy-flapping. Wiggle-waggling. In and out, free and loose, like a... Wait. I don't think I'm allowed to say that.
Disappointed. But, I can't wait to fix it, so I can play again. Cause it's awesome.

Sorry to hear that. Nothing sucks more than not being able to play with a new pin

Start reaching out to nearby Pinsiders. I’m sure someone will give/loan you one.

#20 43 days ago

Could the plunger be damaged by this? I’m thinking of the fact that the flipper was working for a while and is now not. Wondering if you should get a new plunger as well.

#21 43 days ago
Quoted from Mach5Amps:

BoJo - I'd by you a beer if you were local. You called it!
Part is on order. Thanks all!

I appreciate the offer and glad you were able to find the issue. After being on a few Stern tours nothing shocks me anymore with regards to their quality control.

If you would ever need to add some vertical play to your flipper you just loosen the nut in this picture (courtesy of Wmsfan) and pull up on the flipper. You can see the flipper shaft has plenty of room to move vertically. One of the first things I do when I buy a game is check the vertical play on the flippers to make sure they are not too tight because even though they will still work having them too tight can reduce the strength of the flipper and also how quickly they return to the home position.
paw (resized).JPG

#22 43 days ago
Quoted from Mach5Amps:

Flippy-flapping. Wiggle-waggling. In and out, free and loose, like a... Wait. I don't think I'm allowed to say that.
Disappointed. But, I can't wait to fix it, so I can play again. Cause it's awesome.

If you don't have the coil sleeve on hand, you can borrow one off a lower playfield flipper from that AC/DC and just avoid playing the "hell" themed songs that activates the lower playfield. That'll get you back in business and able to play about 3/4 of the songs.

#23 42 days ago
Quoted from cjchand:

Start reaching out to nearby Pinsiders. I’m sure someone will give/loan you one.

Maybe, but I'm new to this, don't know anyone, and have the social skills of an engineer. Plus, I'm headed out of town for the weekend.

I've told the kids the machine is out-of-order till I get it fixed, and I have ordered the part.

However, in about 6 hours I'll be driving through Chicago, on my way to Wisconsin. There's gotta be a place I could stop to grab one. Off to web search...

#24 42 days ago
Quoted from cosmokramer:

Great job Stern...

My DP Premium was missing a washer on a drop target. Worked great for the first couple of months and eventually, didn't work at all. Not sure how you could assemble the first one without the washer and then remember the next two, or vice versa. Thankfully, had a washer lying around the house to fix the issue.

18
#25 42 days ago
Quoted from Mach5Amps:

However, in about 6 hours I'll be driving through Chicago, on my way to Wisconsin. There's gotta be a place I could stop to grab one. Off to web search...

If you are coming up I-90 on your way to Wisconsin I could meet you at the Pinball Life warehouse and give you the coil sleeve you need. Google Maps will tell you how far away you are from our place. We are about 1 hour Northwest of Chicago right off of I-90.
Terry.
Pinball Life

#26 42 days ago
Quoted from pinballlife:

If you are coming up I-90 on your way to Wisconsin I could meet you at the Pinball Life warehouse and give you the coil sleeve you need. Google Maps will tell you how far away you are from our place. We are about 1 hour Northwest of Chicago right off of I-90.
Terry.
Pinball Life

*This* is the pin community in action! Happy to be a PBL customer

#27 42 days ago

If the game was built in the last 90 days (look on the back) do yourself a favor and just replace all 4 coil stops. Horrifically bad batch from Stern.

#28 42 days ago
Quoted from pinballlife:

If you are coming up I-90 on your way to Wisconsin I could meet you at the Pinball Life warehouse and give you the coil sleeve you need. Google Maps will tell you how far away you are from our place. We are about 1 hour Northwest of Chicago right off of I-90.
Terry.
Pinball Life

I am! And, my parts are on order through you (Order # 247472). My second Pinball Life order since I ordered the machine.

If I could swing by there on my way past, even if just to pick up a coil sleeve, that would be so awesome.

Waze says I'd be there about 12:40 (I'm already on the road, though you never know about Chicago traffic). I'll keep my eye on this, and if you're able, I'll be there! If that timeframe doesn't work, as a customer, I still appreciate the offer a lot.

My phone number should be in the order information, but I'll check back with this thread too.

So cool for you to offer.

#29 42 days ago

Post here when your GPS says you are 1 hour away. I'll meet you at the warehouse and you can pick up your order and I'll refund you shipping $$$.
Come around to the back side of the first building. Windows and door say Pinball Life World Headquarters.
Terry.

Pinball Life
11930 Oak Creek Parkway
Huntley, IL

847-515-3415

#30 42 days ago

It's a white industrial condo building with red trim.

#31 42 days ago
Quoted from pinballlife:

Post here when your GPS says you are 1 hour away. I'll meet you at the warehouse and you can pick up your order and I'll refund you shipping $$$.
Come around to the back side of the first building. Windows and door say Pinball Life World Headquarters.
Terry.
Pinball Life
11930 Oak Creek Parkway
Huntley, IL
847-515-3415

OK. I am now one hour away. According to my GPS & on my way.

This is unbelievable customer service!

#32 42 days ago

Terry and Margaret rock.

#34 42 days ago

Got the warehouse, looked up your order and now realize it has already shipped. You most likely get your order on Monday.

You can still stop by PBL though if you want.

#35 42 days ago

And, got it. Terry rocks!

#36 41 days ago

And, fixed. Got home from Wisconsin, and first thing after kissing the wife, I installed the coil sleeve, and now the flipper whacks the ball up ramps or wherever without problem.

I didn't see anything that caused me any concern with regard to wear or coil stops.

Back together, and back playing. Thanks, all, for the help (especially Terry)!

#37 41 days ago
Quoted from Mach5Amps:

And, fixed. Got home from Wisconsin, and first thing after kissing the wife, I installed the coil sleeve, and now the flipper whacks the ball up ramps or wherever without problem.
I didn't see anything that caused me any concern with regard to wear or coil stops.
Back together, and back playing. Thanks, all, for the help (especially Terry)!

Congrats! A nice story all around, except for the part where they forgot the coil sleeve during assembly.

#38 41 days ago

I wonder if there is a person on the Stern assembly line, that has their inspection number or something on that machine, that now realizes that they might have missed a detail on a coil sleeve that was not installed. I bet that person is aware of the potential issue. Perhaps they will be called in on the carpet now. Makes you wonder how many more were missed and never detected.

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