(Topic ID: 222032)

Newb question


By MrFancy

11 months ago



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  • 49 posts
  • 16 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 10 months ago by chuckwurt
  • Topic is favorited by 3 Pinsiders

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#1 11 months ago

I've had my first pin for less than a week and it's already broken- one of the flippers is sticking. It's a mechanical issue, so I'm trying to just take it apart and see if I can tell what needs to be replaced. Unfortunately, I'm not exactly what they call "handy." The problem I'm having is, how do you remove the nut in the picture? I can't get a ratchet under the screw, and since the mechanism it's on moves up and down I can't get it with my adjustable wrench either.

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#2 11 months ago

How about an open end wrench? What game is this?

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#3 11 months ago

Open end wrench on the bottom and allen head wrench on top

#4 11 months ago

Thanks guys, I guess a fourth trip to the hardware store this weekend is in order.

Will one of the regular L-shaped Allen wrenches work do you think, or do I need to get that gives you better leverage? I did try a regular Allen wrench with my adjustable wrench on the bottom and it seemed like it would be pretty tough to loosen, even with a better wrench on the bottom.

It's a DH by the way.

#5 11 months ago

Flipper sticking could be the spring eos or dirty or worn bushing. Powered off and manually raise the flipper does it stick?

#6 11 months ago
Quoted from Buzz:

Flipper sticking could be the spring eos or dirty or worn bushing. Powered off and manually raise the flipper does it stick?

Yes. I can also manually move it backwards past the resting point easily, which I can't with the flipper that doesn't stick.

#7 11 months ago
Quoted from MrFancy:

Yes. I can also manually move it backwards past the resting point easily, which I can't with the flipper that doesn't stick.

Sounds like it's loose if you can move it back past the resting point.

#8 11 months ago

Your flipper is stripped or loose. Have you loosened the metal flipper post or tried to tighten it?

#9 11 months ago

That plunger assembly is worn and traveling too far and sticking on the end of the EOS leaf blade switch. You can see the 5/32nds allen head bolt has major wear around the washer area.

Time for a flipper rebuild. New plunger assembly ( do them both ) new coil sleeve, new coil stop.

Vid1900's write up will help you.

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/vids-guide-to-upgradingrebuilding-flippers

LTG : )

#10 11 months ago

That looks like a nut w/the nylon insert to help keep it from coming loose. You can by new at about any hardware store. I just buy a bunch - a lot cheaper that way. I think they are 'one time' use.

#11 11 months ago
Quoted from LTG:

Time for a flipper rebuild. New plunger assembly ( do them both ) new coil sleeve, new coil stop.

Don’t forget to get a gap tool or five.

#12 11 months ago
Quoted from DDandB-KID:

Don’t forget to get a gap tool or five.

Or a thick business card.

LTG : )

#13 11 months ago
Quoted from LTG:

That plunger assembly is worn and traveling too far and sticking on the end of the EOS leaf blade switch. You can see the 5/32nds allen head bolt has major wear around the washer area.
Time for a flipper rebuild. New plunger assembly ( do them both ) new coil sleeve, new coil stop.
Vid1900's write up will help you.
https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/vids-guide-to-upgradingrebuilding-flippers
LTG : )

This is key advice. The first time I had flipper problems and got pointed to this thread, I felt lost, alone, and scared. But the instructions are actually great, the advice invaluable, and once you get your head wrapped around it you'll want to do this to all your current and future pins. I do, and nice rebuilt flippers are a huge +++ for all games (because most games come with really worn flipper assemblies).

#14 11 months ago
Quoted from Buzz:

Your flipper is stripped or loose. Have you loosened the metal flipper post or tried to tighten it?

I think this is right, specifically that the clamp that holds the flipper post (picture below) got loose. I realized that I didn't have to get the nut that I originally posted about off necessarily (it's on too tight to get it with two wrenches anyway), instead loosening the clamp that holds the flipper post in was enough to get at the bushing and take the flipper out. I did that, washed out the bushing (which was filthy buy not damaged), put the bushing and flipper back in, and tightened the clamp. Then I realized that I needed to be more careful about lining up the flipper first, so I loosened the clamp again, took the flipper out, and went to bed.

When I went back to it, I found that I cannot get the flipper post through one of the holes in the clamp. It goes through the first hole, but the second is too small. I guess the clamp must have gotten too tight when I tightened it last night... although it seems weird that I was able to get the flipper out but now I can't get it in. I've been trying to pry the clamp open enough to get the post in with a screwdriver (that's what the visible wear is from), but it's not working.

I'm definitely not at the point where I can pull off a flipper rebuild at this point- I'd have to pay someone to do it, so I'd like to avoid that unless there are no other options. Any other advice?

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#15 11 months ago
Quoted from MrFancy:

Any other advice?

Any local collectors able to give you some hands on help ?

LTG : )

#16 11 months ago

I might point out you are half way there. The other end of the coil, two allen head set screws hold the coil stop down. Remove them and the coil stop comes off, slide the coil off. Remove the plunger assembly. Replace plunger assembly. Put new coil sleeve in coil, replace coil. Put on new coil stop and fasten it down with the two allen head screws.

Replace flipper and push shaft into the new pawl on the plunger assembly. Tighten it and leave a tiny bit of up and down play on the flipper bat like in the video link I posted above. I like to tighten a little so the flipper moves if pushed hard, lower playfield and line the angle of the flipper up where you want it. Lift the playfield back up and cranks that sucker down hard and tight.

LTG : )

#17 11 months ago

Here is a video to help you.

Your game is newer and doesn't have the yellow capacitor on it, so ignore it. In rebuilding your flipper you don't have to do any wiring or soldering anyway.

LTG : )

#18 11 months ago
Quoted from LTG:

I might point out you are half way there. The other end of the coil, two allen head set screws hold the coil stop down. Remove them and the coil stop comes off, slide the coil off. Remove the plunger assembly. Replace plunger assembly. Put new coil sleeve in coil, replace coil. Put on new coil stop and fasten it down with the two allen head screws.
Replace flipper and push shaft into the new pawl on the plunger assembly. Tighten it and leave a tiny bit of up and down play on the flipper bat like in the video link I posted above. I like to tighten a little so the flipper moves if pushed hard, lower playfield and line the angle of the flipper up where you want it. Lift the playfield back up and cranks that sucker down hard and tight.
LTG : )

Hmmm... I've looked at a few videos and they've all involved soldering and removing the whole metal plate that the flipper mechanism is attached to, but is that actually not really necessary? I just went down and checked, and I can definitely take everything else apart if I don't have to do either of those things.

#19 11 months ago
Quoted from MrFancy:

removing the whole metal plate that the flipper mechanism is attached to, but is that actually not really necessary?

No soldering. Unless you break any wires, you aren't replacing coil or end of stroke switch. No removeing the metal base plate ( 8 more screws ) unless you replace the nylon bushing the flipper shaft rides in.

You are only putting in a plunger assembly, coil sleeve ( inside the coil - not the coil ) and coil stop.

This is what you need :

Two of these - https://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=272

One of these - https://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=250

One of these - https://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=249

Two of these - https://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=90

Or one of these - https://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=244

LTG : )

#20 11 months ago

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/vids-guide-to-upgradingrebuilding-flippers Vid1900 wrote up a nice guide, though it covers many styles of flippers. Don't get confused with information not relating to you.

LTG : )

#21 11 months ago

Excellent, thank you so much! I was getting pretty discouraged there but now I think I can pull this off!

10
#22 11 months ago

Hang in there we all started terrified. You can do it.

#23 11 months ago
Quoted from MrFancy:

I found that I cannot get the flipper post through one of the holes in the clamp. It goes through the first hole, but the second is too small. I guess the clamp must have gotten too tight when I tightened it last night... although it seems weird that I was able to get the flipper out but now I can't get it in. I've been trying to pry the clamp open enough to get the post in with a screwdriver (that's what the visible wear is from), but it's not working.

This is pretty common when you pull the flipper bat right out and then reinstall. The ends of the crank assembly need to get crushed pretty tight to keep the shaft from rotating during play. You usually need to pry them apart a bit to get the shaft back in after having it out. You also need to get the angle that the shaft is at right to make it slide back in. Takes some fiddling around at times. When you do get it back in, it needs to be tightened very hard.
When you do get it lined up, make sure you don't get the flipper too tight to the playfield. That's what the references to a flipper gap tool were about.

#24 11 months ago
Quoted from RCA1:

This is pretty common when you pull the flipper bat right out and then reinstall. The ends of the crank assembly need to get crushed pretty tight to keep the shaft from rotating during play. You usually need to pry them apart a bit to get the shaft back in after having it out. You also need to get the angle that the shaft is at right to make it slide back in. Takes some fiddling around at times. When you do get it back in, it needs to be tightened very hard.
When you do get it lined up, make sure you don't get the flipper too tight to the playfield. That's what the references to a flipper gap tool were about.

Thanks, it's good to know that I'm not completely on the wrong track with that. I'm definitely going to rebuild all three of the flippers, but I'm having some guests in town before I'll be able to do that and would love to get the machine functional in the meantime. I think the only thing standing in my way is being able to pry open that stupid clamp. I got a little ways with it by taking it off the machine, first hammering a putty knife into the end of it and then a screwdriver, but I haven't been able to widen it enough to get the flipper shaft in. Also sliced my thumb a bit in the process, which feels like a badge of honor . It seems like a vise would help, but I don't have one, just a bunch of assorted tools lying around. No problem to pick up something small though at Home Depot. Anybody got any Robinson Crusoe-type ideas for prying that clamp open?

#25 11 months ago

I have had pretty good luck using a flat screwdriver in between the halves, and "rocking" it back and forth to spread them a bit.
Yeah, be careful and don't slip and stab yourself with the screwdriver.
It doesn't generally have to be made much wider. The shaft can be snug when you push it back through.
Getting things lined up is probably more key. You generally have to push the plunger into the coil and get the end of the crank exactly below the flipper bushing so the shaft goes on exactly straight.
You'll get it. Don't get frustrated, that's when you damage stuff.

It is a bit easier with brand new parts, since the ends of the crank are spread wider when brand new.

#26 11 months ago

I would ask some neighbors if they have a vice. If you can get down to alexandria, I have spare wpc rebuild kits/parts.

#27 11 months ago

You're on the right track! I have found the pawl/crank can be so tight sometimes that even just removing the flipper bat is nearly impossible. Just keep at it (carefully!) with a big flat-head screwdriver as an above poster had suggested. Don't give up, you're well on your way! Plus the excitement of finally fixing it will make all this worthwhile, i assure you.

You're in good hands here! As another poster said, we all started off terrified. You'll get there!

#28 11 months ago

You should be able too hold in one hand and hammer with the other one. Then check to see if flipper will go in that one if so flip and try the other side then try to go all the way through with flipper bat.

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#29 11 months ago

Well, I got the clamp open enough to get the flipper in, put everything back together, powered it up, and... IT WORKS!!! The flipper is flipping normally, although I had to get back to work before I could test it out any more than that. Even if it doesn't hold, it's a great feeling to have gotten this far with it and I've learned a ton. Thanks so much to everyone who gave advice and encouragement, you guys are the best!

#30 11 months ago

#31 11 months ago

Great work! And remember: you want to tighten the flipper bat very tight. Another pinsider had put it: "tighten the Allen wrench until it feels like it's about to break"...just food for thought if the flipper bat should loosen up again. Of course, be sure the flipper is aligned the way you want before you tighten it up (as you've already learned)! Game on!

#32 11 months ago

No looking back know!!
Enjoy your new game!

#33 11 months ago

#34 11 months ago

Well that flipper is holding up but now I’m having a weird problem with the gun on my DH. When I start it up, it usually plays fine for a few games, but then the gun won’t stop rotating back and forth and the game won’t use it anymore. The weird part is, other aspects of the game change too after the malfunction- it auto plunges, the ball save gets very generous, and if you start any of the hurry ups the timer doesn’t count down. Disabling the gun in the settings makes the other issues stop. After the malfunction there’s a credit dot and the test message says “gun broken.” Before the malfunction there’s no credit dot. Any ideas?

#35 11 months ago

Gun switches not working.

Should be a gun test in there to help you narrow it down.

LTG : )

1 week later
#36 11 months ago
Quoted from LTG:

Gun switches not working.
Should be a gun test in there to help you narrow it down.
LTG : )

Thanks- didn't get to it before I left for vacation last week, but I'm back and ready to tackle this one. Not trying to be a pain at all and am happy to do my own research so that I'm not wasting anyone else's time, but since the gun is an unusual part I'm still not sure what I'd even try to search for here. The test message says to check switches 44 (gun chamber), 45 (gun popper), 76 (gun position), and 77 (gun lockup). When I run a test on each individual switch, 45 is closed and displays an (A), while the other three are open. I'm not sure what any of that means. There is a gun test, but that looks like it's just testing whether the gun will move and rotate properly, which it does.

In happier news, I rebuilt one of the flippers without any problems yesterday... well, except for losing a couple of screws in the cabinet, taking something apart that didn't need to be taken apart and then putting it back together wrong at first, etc. But, at the end of the day the flipper is rebuilt and works great, and I'm planning to knock out the other two tomorrow. The guy who sold me the machine actually saw this thread and Paypal'd me the cash for the flipper rebuild kit because he felt bad, which I thought was a pretty cool of him to do.

#37 11 months ago

One more issue- after playing a DH on location, I think mine is too fast and I want to lower the back legs. I tried having someone hold the machine up while I used a 1/2" wrench/ratchet to tighten the bolt that connects the leg to the leveler. It torqued the leg a worrying amount, then slipped off. A smaller 7/16" won't fit. I read that the standard leg leveler nuts are supposed to be 9/16", so if the smaller 1/2" is slipping off that makes me wonder if the bolts are stripped- they look it a little. Any help would be appreciated.

#38 11 months ago
Quoted from MrFancy:

One more issue- after playing a DH on location, I think mine is too fast and I want to lower the back legs. I tried having someone hold the machine up while I used a 1/2" wrench/ratchet to tighten the bolt that connects the leg to the leveler. It torqued the leg a worrying amount, then slipped off. A smaller 7/16" won't fit. I read that the standard leg leveler nuts are supposed to be 9/16", so if the smaller 1/2" is slipping off that makes me wonder if the bolts are stripped- they look it a little. Any help would be appreciated.

The nuts on the levelers only hold the leveler where you want it when you get it there. To adjust the height, back off the nut (or nuts if they are both above and below) then rotate the whole leveler to raise or lower the height. The threaded shaft of the leveler goes up and down through the bottom of the leg on it's own threads, the nut keeps it from moving. Tighten the nut(s) up again when you get it where you want it. The nuts really shouldn't be Conan the Barbarian tight.

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#39 11 months ago

Great to see a lot of helpful Pinsiders here! This could’ve escalated to sarcasm and not being helpful VERY quickly.
Thanks for helping mrfancy out!

And welcome to the world of pinball! Always good to see some new faces around.

#40 11 months ago
Quoted from Koos:

Great to see a lot of helpful Pinsiders here! This could’ve escalated to sarcasm and not being helpful VERY quickly.
Thanks for helping mrfancy out!
And welcome to the world of pinball! Always good to see some new faces around.

Indeed! I was very frustrated and starting to think I'd picked the wrong hobby and should just sell my machine when I started this thread, but people have been so helpful and encouraging that I'm convinced to stay in it for the long haul. I learn so much every day here.

#41 11 months ago
Quoted from RCA1:

The nuts on the levelers only hold the leveler where you want it when you get it there. To adjust the height, back off the nut (or nuts if they are both above and below) then rotate the whole leveler to raise or lower the height. The threaded shaft of the leveler goes up and down through the bottom of the leg on it's own threads, the nut keeps it from moving. Tighten the nut(s) up again when you get it where you want it. The nuts really shouldn't be Conan the Barbarian tight.[quoted image]

Thanks- I didn't realize I was supposed to loosening the nut instead of tightening it. But, I'm not having any luck loosening it either. What I'm doing is, using my back to lift the leg slightly off the ground and then trying to loosen it using a ratchet on the end of a wrench. The 1/2" wrench/ratchet slips off, and 7/16" is too small. Can't get it with pliers, an adjustable wrench, or a nut driver either. Does that mean the nut is stripped? If so, I've seen advice to try WD-40, filing down either end so you can grab it with an adjustable wrench, using a blowtorch(!)... or, maybe I need a socket wrench?

Here's a pic of what mine looks like- there's nothing on the bottom to grab onto, only a round washer right underneath the bottom of the leg:

IMG_2067 (resized).JPG
#42 11 months ago
Quoted from MrFancy:

Here's a pic of what mine looks like- there's nothing on the bottom to grab onto, only a round washer right underneath the bottom of the leg:

You seem to be confused about nuts and bolts and threaded stuff.

Your picture I used below - the red arrow points to a bolt thing originally fastened onto the leg. If it is turning, grab it with a vice grips to hold in place.

The green arrow - under the leg should be a nut. If missing, the caster/threaded rod it's on should just turn up or down as needed. If it turns hard, then grab the threaded part as close to the leveler on the floor with a pliers or something to turn it. Close to the floor will lessen damage to threads you won't likely need.

LTG : )

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#43 11 months ago
Quoted from LTG:

You seem to be confused about nuts and bolts and threaded stuff.

In case you hadn't noticed, I'm confused about all kinds of things!

That was the answer though, thanks! Gotta laugh at myself here- this one had me stumped for days, and I spent hours trying to fix it by attacking that nut with pliers, watching YouTube videos about getting stripped nuts off with blowtorches, etc... when all along, the solution took literally three seconds!

#44 11 months ago
Quoted from MrFancy:

....the solution took literally three seconds!

Remember that feeling and always look for the quickest way to get there! Trust us

#45 11 months ago

You may also find you can just spin the furniture slider under the leg to raise/lower it is there's enough weight on it. Most of my games are on those sliders and I've frequently (but not always) been able to raise or lower the leg just by spinning the furniture slider

2 weeks later
#46 10 months ago

Hey it's me again! I have a few new questions, any guidance is much appreciated:

1. After rebuilding the flippers (except the EOS switches) a month or so ago, I noticed that the upper right flipper was losing a little bit of power. I checked it and the whole thing was loose, as in I could jiggle the flipper up and down on the playfield way more than should be the case. An issue I'd had when replacing it was that one on the screws that holds the bushing in broke off, so that there are only two screws holding the bushing down. When I checked under the playfield, both of those screws were very loose, and the metal post attached to the flipper had also slid up in the clamp. I tightened everything and now it works fine. I'm wondering though, could that broken screw be what was causing the problem? If so, any ideas about how to get it out?

2. I did my flipper rebuild keeping everything on the underside of the playfield (meaning I didn't take the big metal plates off). Some of the screws that went into the underside of the playfield had nuts on them, but I'm not able to replace those because I can't reach them without taking those big metal plates off. Is that something I should worry about?

3. I did a lot more research on the gun malfunction (my machine is a DH), and it's common to have to replace the optos in the gun chamber, which would seem to make sense given my issues. I started by taking the gun apart and cleaning the optos, but they weren't particularly dirty and doing that didn't fix the problem. When I run a single switch test on the gun chamber switch, it says the switch is open, and when I put my finger in between the optos it doesn't change. Does that indicate the optos are very likely to be the problem? I ask because they'll need to soldered, which would mean a significant investment of time and money in buying soldering equipment and learning how to use it. I'm fine with that if that's what I need to do (and I've seen the excellent tutorial on soldering here), but I really don't want to go through all that only to find that wasn't actually the problem. What do you guys think?

#47 10 months ago
Quoted from MrFancy:

I ask because they'll need to soldered, which would mean a significant investment of time and money in buying soldering equipment and learning how to use it.

I’m not familiar with the workings of the gun mech on DH, but I did want to jump in to say that yes, owning a pinball machine you WILL need that soldering equipment. If not for this, then for something else that’ll happen tomorrow or next week or...

Also, you don’t have to go nuts on it. Pick up a $20 Weller 25 Watt soldering iron, that’ll more than get you going. It even comes with a small spool of solder that you can use to practice with on a busted PCB/etc., or use in a pinch if need be. Amazon, Home Depot, these are available anywhere. But do get one!

That $20 iron will be fine for all basic repairs - you don’t need to dump tons of money on some high end solder station at this stage. I use one of these for day to day stuff and quick fixes and it’s totally fine.

#48 10 months ago
Quoted from MrFancy:

1. After rebuilding the flippers (except the EOS switches) a month or so ago, I noticed that the upper right flipper was losing a little bit of power. I checked it and the whole thing was loose, as in I could jiggle the flipper up and down on the playfield way more than should be the case. An issue I'd had when replacing it was that one on the screws that holds the bushing in broke off, so that there are only two screws holding the bushing down. When I checked under the playfield, both of those screws were very loose, and the metal post attached to the flipper had also slid up in the clamp. I tightened everything and now it works fine. I'm wondering though, could that broken screw be what was causing the problem? If so, any ideas about how to get it out?

2. I did my flipper rebuild keeping everything on the underside of the playfield (meaning I didn't take the big metal plates off). Some of the screws that went into the underside of the playfield had nuts on them, but I'm not able to replace those because I can't reach them without taking those big metal plates off. Is that something I should worry about?

When you rebuild your flippers you need to remove the metal bracket so you can access the nuts on the top side of the bushing screws. First you remove the nuts then you remove the screws. Install a new bushing and replace the screws. Once you have the screws tight you hold them in place with the screwdriver and then install the nut and tighten with a nutdriver with a drop of locktight. The nut keeps the screws from loosening, the locktight keeps the nuts from loosening. If done like this they will never come loose again.

#49 10 months ago

Take everything off the game, brackets and all and rebuild those flippers on your bench. Much easier.

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