(Topic ID: 179489)

"Nic's North American Pinball Tour" (aka I'm coming to fix your games!)


By NicoVolta

2 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 2,313 posts
  • 287 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 21 days ago by NicoVolta
  • Topic is favorited by 151 Pinsiders

You

Linked Games

No games have been linked to this topic.

    Topic Gallery

    There have been 1,911 images uploaded to this topic. (View topic image gallery).

    KVIL poster (resized).jpg
    CA49040D-6630-4A45-98EC-098A17B1BC1E (resized).jpeg
    5BF19104-DCAB-43FB-8061-580F76A59EEB (resized).jpeg
    7635D833-0BF0-4A15-8D04-D5018215C5CC (resized).jpeg
    B353F092-BEC0-4EEA-9E80-4D958D496017 (resized).jpeg
    D197D070-C43D-4F3B-B4DC-6930AE040CD6 (resized).jpeg
    30AF8562-5B01-48D9-B9E3-07ADE8DFDE9F (resized).jpeg
    519741C7-0D7D-4E9B-B73B-5D622A352BD4 (resized).jpeg
    08E3B205-7BC0-417C-8C93-E12F0EF5F0B2 (resized).jpeg
    EADCF2A6-148F-4FFB-B852-3C9EDC8A5C67 (resized).jpeg
    DSCF4049 (resized).JPG
    Fast Blinking LEDs (resized).png
    001AED23-93D5-48B6-B360-C2C0E54DE761 (resized).jpeg
    71B71D63-4224-4D2B-AE29-F3F90879AE6C (resized).jpeg
    75520222-F62F-4C7E-B667-1CFB871D423D (resized).jpeg
    B4235018-7378-4A12-BDC8-5A9A31031A5D (resized).jpeg

    Topic index (key posts)

    93 key posts have been marked in this topic, showing the first 20 (Show topic index)

    There are 2313 posts in this topic. You are on page 8 of 47.
    #351 2 years ago

    Yeah...looking at these posts, I just realize I have GOT to get myself fired from work so I can try this out myself.

    #352 2 years ago
    Quoted from beelzeboob:

    Yeah...looking at these posts, I just realize I have GOT to get myself fired from work so I can try this out myself.

    Was thinking the same thing til I realized I'm self-employed... and then I realized I also have no fix-it skills of which to speak.

    #353 2 years ago
    Quoted from dasvis:

    No bingo pins?

    GOOD EYE, SIR! Seems I missed a category... no bingos. Though the other place had bongos. :p

    I'll drop a note to Silverball about that. They have room to swap out one of the pitch-n'-bats for a bingo.

    Other games they had: Mata Hari EM, Charlie's Angels EM, '72 Fireball, Majorettes, Big Bang Bar, Slick Chick... lots of good ones.

    (I'd also swap out Hokus Pokus for an Old Chicago)

    #354 2 years ago

    "...at which point, an old favorite immediately came to mind: "

    HAHAHA!!

    Great, I can only imagine the weirdness vibe running down your spinal column at that poin - although unsettling, stumbling onto strangeness like this can be entertaining!! Glad you shot photos - would love to know the history of this collection and the misguided concept of opening an "arcade" - maybe it's a Zen Arcade (Husker Du, yes.....), where you stand in front of the silent machine and become one with it............the palm reading and cigars adds another dimension - wow!

    12
    #355 2 years ago

    Visit #8 – Walter “Gregg” Young in Melbourne, FL

    The subjects: Rocket, Mini Cycle, Argosy

    Gregg is a high-spirited creative thinker who is planning to launch the next big thing in Melbourne: A place where vintage tech, audio, gaming, pinball, and Makerspace-type amenities all coexist under one roof…

    1 (resized).JPG

    …and that roof might be the one covering Tedco Electronics, a local tech/electronic shop which has been in operation for decades. It still looks like Radio Shack did in the old days when the shelves were actually stocked with electronic components. Tedco sells a variety of difficult to find items such as tiny belts for VCR motors and parts for vintage tube radios and TV’s.

    (pictured left to right, yours truly, Dan, Eric, Gregg, Mitchell, and “Eric of Naples”… Martin is off-camera)

    2 (resized).JPG

    Speaking of tubes, Tedco is the only known local shop with a functioning tube tester still available for public use. And where there are tube testers, there are tubes.

    4 (resized).JPG

    Lots of tubes.

    5 (resized).JPG

    A whole lot of tubes.

    6 (resized).JPG

    Tubes and tubes and tubes!

    Did I mention I am a serious tube guy? Before the pinball hobby kicked in, I used to host regular Head-Fi meetups and was (and still am) quite fond of tube-based audio. Back in those days I built SET monoblock amplifiers, an exotic horn loudspeaker system, and a number of tubed headphone amps… so it was pretty darn exciting to see so many tube boxes hiding back there. I didn’t spot any 5751’s, 12ax7’s, or rectifiers lurking among the shelves, but I’m sure other treasured varieties were sitting among them.

    7 (resized).JPG

    My visit with Gregg (and company) at Tedco followed a slightly different format. Instead of the usual one-on-one visits planned for the majority of the tour, this was to be a group class spanning two days.

    Dan and “Eric of Naples” (that’s MeNaCeFiRe to you, Pinsiders) brought a 1947 Bally Rocket woodrail with them as class material. Eric brought a Gottlieb Mini Cycle for some tuning. Martin (pictured in the “Tilting is Trying” t-shirt) is the full-time tech at the Strong Museum of Play (in Rochester NY). And Mitchell joined in wearing a pac-man CINCY tee. Obviously, all of us = gamers to the bone in one form or another.

    8 (resized).JPG

    After reviewing my recommended tool list and some common repair techniques, we began to work on Rocket. Looks simple enough, right? Not much going on under the hood. Ah, but looks can be deceiving.

    9 (resized).JPG

    Menace is no stranger to pinball, EM’s included. He routes several games and owns about 25 of them personally. But Rocket has proven vexing… the kickouts would fire continuously no matter what.

    8a (resized).JPG

    We replaced a fuse holder, cleaned and re-tensioned a few relays and switches, and carefully examined every possible trigger and solder joint throughout the entire playfield and backbox. Yet the coils kept firing regardless. Extremely frustrating. It ate several hours of class time… but we could not find the cause.

    8b (resized).JPG

    Gregg had a solution of his own. Luckily I was not soldering near my eye at the time.

    10 (resized).JPG

    I would like to take this moment to say that schematics from the 1940’s officially suck, and make for poor class material. Despite the relative simplicity of the circuit, the diagram didn’t offer much help.

    11 (resized).JPG

    Ew.

    Eventually, we had to switch gears due to time constraints… meaning that Rocket would be the second game (also a woodrail) which would elude my troubleshooting powers. Damn. In the future, it might be wise to avoid using a woodrail from this era as class material.

    12 (resized).JPG

    Next, we popped the hood of Mini Cycle and had a look inside.

    13 (resized).JPG

    Is that switch slightly out of alignment, or what? Always a good idea to manually turn the motor (with the power off) and observe the switches as they go around. Are the closed ones opening? Are the open ones closing?

    15 (resized).JPG

    In the backbox we found a missing AS relay for the 0-9 match function. The match unit isn’t technically necessary for the game to operate, but it is nice to have. Who doesn’t like hearing that little free game *pop*? Also, one of the score reels was locking on, but only for player one.

    I demonstrated how to jump the connection from the affected coil to the player cam unit, test, and then jump the rest of the circuit to the relay. At first it appeared to be faulty wiring, but it was merely a dirty switch contact in the player one stack.

    Dirty contacts are your enemy!

    16 (resized).JPG

    Under the playfield, the right flipper was sticking up. Since the return spring had good tension, we suspected either a mushroomed or magnetized coil stop. Before we could do anything, Gregg sprang into action and held a degaussing coil aloft like a giant garlic necklace to ward away vampires. He waved the ring and degaussed the entire playfield with its crackling power (while we kept our smartphones at a safe distance). This was not only a first for us, but perhaps all of pinball.

    17 (resized).JPG

    However, the real cause was a mushroomed coil stop and some associated plunger wear. Martin used the sanding flapwheel to contour the plunger edges smooth again.

    20 (resized).JPG

    At the end of the day, we had resolved a number of issues and Mini Cycle was back in operation. And there was much rejoicing… “yaaaaay”.

    21 (resized).JPG

    The subject of day two was an Argosy, one of the last EM’s produced by Williams. Russ, Michelle, and Lou received a few lessons in tool selection, common repair techniques (we rebuilt a stepper on Gregg’s Honey playfield), and reading schematics.

    22 (resized).JPG

    Some of the drop targets were not scoring reliably. Removing the rear circuit boards revealed the need to do a little cleaning. Then a larger issue was discovered…

    23 (resized).JPG

    Someone had glued a small machine screw into one of the contact positions! The horseshoe behind target #3 had also been “fixed” in the same way. Oof!

    25 (resized).JPG

    Since the round contacts were missing, the only way to replace them would be to liberate a pair from a Honey stepper unit (and thus ruin it). Gregg didn’t want to do this (a wise choice), so I came up with the next best option: Soldering a high-current contact in place. It wasn’t perfect, but the drop targets were now scoring “most of the time” and would provide a decent temporary fix until the official horseshoe part arrived.

    27 (resized).JPG

    Argosy was given the stealth LED recipe. The backglass had some bare spots, so we substituted bulbs in those places to minimize the appearance of peeling and cracking. Overall, the recipe blended nicely and looked consistent across the glass (which isn’t apparent in the photo… looks much better in person).

    26 (resized).JPG

    As the second day of classes came to a close, I wished Gregg well in his Quest For The All-In-One-Space. Do reach out and contact him if you’d like to get involved and/or live in the Orlando/Melbourne area. He’s got big dreams and certainly the tubes to power them!

    Farewell Florida beaches and sun. A very busy REGION 2 journey up the east coast awaits!

    Next stop -> Durham, NC

    #356 2 years ago
    Quoted from NicoVolta:

    Farewell Florida beaches and sun. A very busy REGION 2 journey up the east coast awaits!
    Next stop -> Durham, NC

    Did you play a game for the record books?

    Marcus

    #357 2 years ago
    Quoted from Xerico:

    Did you play a game for the record books?
    Marcus

    Not this time. The "EM home challenge" is primarily for one-on-one visits and our class material wasn't quite dialed-in enough for the challenge.

    #358 2 years ago

    We recently had a few problems with our DE Tommy and popped back on here for a (possible) solution, then came across your topic. Are you still scheduling visits on your calendar, or will you have an autumn cross-country tour that heads into New England? We could use some basic "how-to" and "what just happened?" lessons because we are fairly new to the world of pinball ownership. We would love to host you as part of your tour in our lovely home overlooking the mountains of Vermont, with a comfortable and quiet guest room.

    #359 2 years ago

    Hi Sally... very kind of you to offer. I don't have any flexibility in my schedule to get to Vermont this trip, unfortunately. But I may have an encore tour coming up and if so I'll keep in touch.

    #360 2 years ago

    Great! We're getting great enjoyment from your writings (style and humor count!) and hope to hear from you about fitting Vermont into your next tour soon.

    #361 2 years ago

    I hope you we're taking notes, my dude.

    IMG_20170420_160235 (resized).jpg

    See you in a month.

    #362 2 years ago

    I remember when those tube tester machines were commonplace. That's a little scary actually.

    #363 2 years ago
    Quoted from jrpinball:

    I remember when those tube tester machines were commonplace. That's a little scary actually.

    Soon you'll be yelling at kids to get off your lawn!

    6054f08528c1fe0012423ae1c6af56d4_-his-walker-in-the-air-old-man-with-walker-clipart_769-1024 (resized).jpeg

    #364 2 years ago

    Just busting your chops, JR. I think it would have been cool to get to see many of those around. At least these days.

    #365 2 years ago

    Visit #9 – Family time & Orin Day (Lobster) in Durham, NC (part 1 of 2)

    The subjects: Cover Girl w/the family… then Gridiron, Super Soccer, Shuffle Pool, Hi-Diver, Sweet Hearts, Zig Zag, Volley, The Wiggler, and Big Day (yes, really)

    1 (resized).JPG

    On the way to Durham, I visited my father & his partner Jennifer (who served as one of the Red Cross “Donut Dollies” in the Vietnam War). Had to make a house call to work on Cover Girl and, wouldn’t you know it, they were already waiting for me with the tour tees. Thanks again to Ryan Claytor for the excellent design work and fulfillment... looks great! No time to get comfortable, however. The work awaits!

    3 (resized).JPG

    Cover Girl was already in good shape, but a couple of issues were apparent. Firstly, most of the playfield bulbs were dim and/or not working at all. Secondly, the game was playing extremely fast (too much power) and thus some signs of broken plastics were visible near the pop bumpers. Pinball experts, you probably already know the issue at hand: High tap transformer. Which was made even more extreme by the addition of not only orange dot flipper coils (higher power), but YELLOW DOT (ultra-high!). Needless to say, the ball was getting blasted all over the playfield at scary speeds.

    4 (resized).JPG

    I swapped out the yellow dots for Gottlieb standard coils and switched the transformer wire from high-tap to normal. Instantly, it felt just right. The default Gottlieb factory recipe was perfect for Cover Girl. Usually this is the best way to go, but I have encountered a few Gottliebs (such Pro-Football and 2001) which benefited from custom coil tuning.

    2 (resized).JPG

    We performed the “tip and base solder trick” to renew a number of lamp sockets underneath the playfield. Cover Girl was then given the stealth LED treatment (pictured).

    5 (resized).JPG

    After the family visit, the Pinwagon traversed miles of tall deciduous and pine trees to reach Orin’s house. North Carolina sure is pretty!

    5a (resized).JPG

    Does the name Orin Day sound familiar to you? It should! Orin worked for Data East and SEGA (their successor) back in the 1990’s doing DMD display and rules design programming. Do you recognize him from the group photo?

    6 (resized).JPG

    If not, here is a more recent photo. In the background are some of the games he personally worked on: Twister, Tommy, Starship Troopers, and X-Files.

    5b (resized).JPG

    The posters lining the entrance to his pinball basement (man, I really need to get one of these!!!) depict more games from his repertoire: Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Goldeneye, Maverick, Jurassic Park, Independence Day, Godzilla, and Lost In Space. He also worked on Guns N’ Roses, Baywatch, Apollo 13, Space Jam, Star Wars Trilogy, Viper Night Drivin’, South Park, and a few Stern titles and some prototypes as well.

    7 (resized).JPG

    8 (resized).JPG

    Orin has two rare (and huge) games at the foot of his pinball cave: The 2-player head-to-head Gottlieb Challenger pinball machine w/tilting playfield… and an extremely cool puck-sliding game I’d never seen before: Genco’s Shuffle Pool.

    9 (resized).JPG

    Upon first glance, Shuffle Pool resembles one of those shuffle-puck bowling games.

    10 (resized).JPG

    But wait… peering under the glass… where did the billiard balls go?!?

    11 (resized).JPG

    Aha! They are hidden underneath! The glass facilitates a phantom projection in the same way Revenge From Mars does it with a reflecting pane. Neat! Also less wear and tear vs. the bowling machines since the balls don’t physically move around or flip upwards. Instead, the balls are scattered underneath and light up in different patterns to challenge the player.

    12 (resized).JPG

    Shuffle Pool is quite large and heavy but easy to service once you get the monster open. But don’t forget to sweep away the tiny wax shuffleboard beads first… or they’ll go right on the floor (and they did, oops).

    14 (resized).JPG

    OK, time for business. First subject was a Gottlieb Super Soccer which wasn’t resetting the reels to zero upon game start (but would play a game). The bonus balls weren’t popping up into the trough either.

    15 (resized).JPG

    I used this opportunity to introduce Orin to EM relay cleaning, gapping, and tensioning. Note Little Joe hanging out in the background… gotta love those classic Ballys.

    16 (resized).JPG

    The tangle of wires and parts inside of a backbox often has an intimidating, labyrinth-like appearance to the newbie. But all I see is delicious, delicious meditation lying in wait. Ahhhhhh. Just lovely. Trust me, if you want to get here Grasshopper, you will… you will.

    17 (resized).JPG

    While Orin worked the relays, I examined the player cam unit (that big badass riveted rotating thing in the back with switch stacks on it). One of the springy-snowshoes wasn’t extending all the way down. For some reason its spring was too short, limiting its travel.

    18 (resized).JPG

    The snowshoe also had a broken piece of flexy-wire (a major contributor of intermittent flakiness), so I heated and removed the wire fragment and pushed the snowshoe through the disc.

    19 (resized).JPG

    Luckily, I had a replacement spring and some flexy-wire. I cleaned all the snowshoes and springs with alcohol and qtips, attached the new spring, and soldered the new wire in place. Everything was now properly snappy and clicky, and that’s the way we like it.

    20 (resized).JPG

    Super Soccer was now resetting all of the digits to zero, except for player four’s 10,000 point position. No movement there. Why not?

    21 (resized).JPG

    A closer look at the Z2 relay revealed the problem: The switch blade was outside of the slot and could never close itself. That’s why the other three were working except for the last digit. No contact = no electricity = no worky.

    22 (resized).JPG

    What about the lack of bonus balls popping into the backbox trough? Pushing the upkicker relay closed with extra force caused the balls to move… a little. Orin took it apart and cleaned and gapped it. But it still wasn’t working well enough. We traced the circuit through the schematic and found that it also went through motor switch 2B…

    23 (resized).JPG

    …and used the world’s tiniest screwdriver to remove the "C" stack (on the main pizza wheel) to reach “B”, underneath. Seems weird that Gottlieb labeled the motor layers A-B-C-D-E from the bottom up instead of the top down… but some games don’t have an “E” stack… thus, a better idea to start from the bottom.

    Even though a visual inspection revealed 2B was opening and closing correctly, it wasn't doing so with enough force and the contacts were not clean. Poor contact = weak electrical flow = not worky. I cleaned the contacts and added a little bend to the switch stack to increase the contact force. Result? *pop* *pop* *pop* went the bonus balls, right on cue.

    (part 2 to be continued…)

    #366 2 years ago
    Quoted from NicoVolta:

    The tangle of wires and parts inside of a backbox often has an intimidating, labyrinth-like appearance to the newbie. But all I see is delicious, delicious meditation lying in wait. Ahhhhhh. Just lovely. Trust me, if you want to get here Grasshopper, you will… you will.

    You have just won Pinside, Nic.

    I am just in my infancy at EM repair and already I am experiencing what you so eloquently describe.

    Thank you for what you are doing,
    Shawn

    11
    #367 2 years ago

    I'm just amazed at all the stuff you know having been in the hobby for so short a time. Really astounding...and I thought I knew a lot! And do you just drive around the country with a car full of transformers, switches, LEDs, etc.? Who the hell does that?

    I hereby elevate you to Vid status in terms of the help you provide people here on Pinside, Nic. Thanks for all you do and keep up the good work!

    #368 2 years ago

    Great thread. Thanks for the great reports. All posts with cat pictures are immediately upvoted.

    #369 2 years ago
    Quoted from NicoVolta:

    Genco’s Shuffle Pool

    Oh... *Covet!*

    Quoted from NicoVolta:

    Thanks again to Ryan Claytor for the excellent design work and fulfillment... looks great!

    YOU guys look great! Glad the shirts all made it there in time for your arrival.

    #370 2 years ago
    Quoted from blueberryjohnson:

    Great thread. Thanks for the great reports. All posts with cat pictures are immediately upvoted.

    Buckle up. Extremely needy cat coming up for part 2 with Orin...

    Quoted from alveolus:

    I am just in my infancy at EM repair and already I am experiencing what you so eloquently describe.

    Pinball Zen is real, and EM's are your first-class ticket. Welcome aboard.

    Quoted from beelzeboob:

    Thanks for all you do and keep up the good work!

    Thanks Beez... since this is one for the ages I'm giving it all I got.

    #371 2 years ago

    Awesome as always. And I love that Cover Girl machine, always play it in Banning when I go there and would love to get one someday.

    #372 2 years ago

    Sure you don't want to make a detour to the Harrisburg Pa area? I have a Bally Safari I'd love for you to work on and teach me how to maintain.

    #373 2 years ago

    Hi Spyder... would love to, but the east coast schedule is jam-packed until (and after) Allentown. Might see you there, yes?

    #374 2 years ago
    Quoted from NicoVolta:

    Hi Spyder... would love to, but the east coast schedule is jam-packed until (and after) Allentown. Might see you there, yes?

    No worries. I didn't find out about this thread until after the schedule was finalized. Do you have a list for the next tour that I could be added to?

    A few of us are heading there for both days. I'm assuming you'll be in the "North American Pinball Tour" shirt?

    #375 2 years ago
    Quoted from Spyderturbo007:

    A few of us are heading there for both days. I'm assuming you'll be in the "North American Pinball Tour" shirt?

    Yep, will be there on Friday & probably wear the shirt Saturday. Not sure where the "encore tour" will lead yet, but rest assured the details will follow... stay tuned.

    #376 2 years ago

    Noob question, what's your "tip and base solder trick ?"

    is this what vid1900 mentions here: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/cleaning-light-sockets#post-1858419 ? (post #8)

    I'm working on Bally Space Time right now and some GI lamps are very weak. Wonder if this would help.

    Thanks Nico (and awesome tour btw!)

    #377 2 years ago

    Good to see the Aussie flag in Orin Day's gamesroom.

    #378 2 years ago
    Quoted from manples:

    Noob question, what's your "tip and base solder trick ?"
    is this what vid1900 mentions here: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/cleaning-light-sockets#post-1858419 ? (post #8)
    I'm working on Bally Space Time right now and some GI lamps are very weak. Wonder if this would help.
    Thanks Nico (and awesome tour btw!)

    Yes. Clay Harrell also made mention of it in his guides. Simply desolder the wire from the tab, and solder it to the tip (after burnishing it with The Magic Brush... which will make its first appearance in the next update).

    You must also heat the junction where the barrel of the lamp socket meets the bracket (on the side) and drop a bead of solder there. It will create a new ground connection. You'll have it right when the barrel stops rotating after the fix.

    #379 2 years ago

    Visit #9 – Family time & Orin Day (Lobster) in Durham, NC (part 2 of 2)

    The subjects: Cover Girl w/the family… then Gridiron, Super Soccer, Shuffle Pool, Hi-Diver, Sweet Hearts, Zig Zag, Volley, The Wiggler, and Big Day (yes, really)

    1 (resized).JPG

    Day two, and the Pinwagon received another Carolina soaking. Orin and I hid indoors and consulted the animal kingdom for advice on which game to fix next… for there were many.

    2 (resized).JPG

    Orin referred to Henry the parakeet: “Green like me”, he tweeted, “green like me!”. And thus, Gottlieb Volley was destined to be the next game in our repair queue.

    3 (resized).JPG

    I, on the other hand, did not get to choose my advice animal. Instead, I was the one chosen. Missy the black kitty used her moony, tiny Toothless-esque gaze to hypnotize me. “Meow”, she poignantly asserted. “Meow, meow, meow… meow, meow”.

    4 (resized).JPG

    I tried… but…

    5 (resized).JPG

    …could not ignore…

    6 (resized).JPG

    …the cuteness.

    7 (resized).JPG

    Onward to the fixin’s. Orin quickly discovered a relay which had once received “a wee smidgen” of extra current. But hey, tungsten contacts are pretty darn tough! And lo, they were cleaned and put back into service.

    7a (resized).JPG

    Meanwhile, I found a SEGA jumper wire across the credit wheel switch. I removed the jumper and closed the switch for permanent free play. Hey… isn’t that the same 1-800 number Stern uses for tech support today? Ha! If it ain’t broke…

    8 (resized).JPG

    Nearby, the flexy-wire on the ball count stepper was taught at full extension to the grounding screw. It was so tight the snowshoe wiper wasn’t able to move… and was thus loosened.

    10 (resized).JPG

    On the other side, an ugly misshapen switch stack was bent all to hell…

    11 (resized).JPG

    …which was subsequently straightened with my trusty switch adjuster.

    12 (resized).JPG

    Right here, dear readers, in this unassuming photo buried in the middle of this post like a camouflaged sack of gold doubloons, is my most game-changing, life-affirming, EM-transforming secret: The Dremel 443 carbon steel brush.

    Gaze well upon it, for it is time to put away your sandpaper, flexstone, and business cards. Along with any notion of “I shouldn’t touch anything inside my EM or it will break”. Nay nay… the time has come to fully own and know your machine. It begins today. It begins now.

    The Dremel 443 is The One True Magic Brush. It will transform everything you touch in EM-land, and dare I say, is the future of our hobby. It has the power to turn back the relentless hands of time.

    By wielding its power you will earn your doctorate in Pinball Dentistry by burnishing and polishing your way throughout your entire machine, head to toe, leaving a golden wake of shimmering smooth contacts and rivets behind.

    Let us repeat the mantra together… “I will swab every contact with a q-tip and alcohol, burnish with The Magic Brush, and swab once more. Through my movement I control the Brush, and through the Brush I control time.”

    Now get thyself to Amazon with haste, Grasshopper. A twin pack of 443 brushes and a fabulous tomorrow awaits thee within the Great Hall of Shimmering Contacts. And, psst, add a cordless model 8220 Dremel if you can swing it.

    The Magic Brush shall return. For now, we continue with the story…

    13 (resized).JPG

    To oil, or not to oil? That is the question.

    Let us consult the Genco Shuffle Pool maintenance card…

    13a (resized).JPG

    Translation: “Don’t oil it. We oiled it. Then you oil it.”

    Next, let us consult a late-model Bally…

    13b (resized).JPG

    To paraphrase, “Oil it.”

    13 (resized).JPG

    I oil it...

    …but only a little bit.

    I apply 3-in-1 to the gear shaft using a q-tip, then use the clean end to smooth and clean off the excess, leaving only a thin layer behind. Seems like a good compromise. And thus, Volley was made whole again.

    15 (resized).JPG

    Gridiron. Found a jones connector not plugged in. Which fixed the scoring issue, but didn’t resolve everything. No schematic = sorry, no time left for you… (cue The Guess Who). Instead, I detoured and rebuilt one of Shuffle Pool’s large rat-trap score reels. No more sticking/ratcheting. Easy peasy.

    17 (resized).JPG

    Beer o’ clock, and how! Erdinger makes terrific weissbier (wheat beer) and an equally terrific glass from which to sip it. This noble goblet is a majestic vessel with gorgeous gold accents and a nicely detailed logo on heavy curved glass. It feels fantastic when held aloft. Kingly, even.

    18 (resized).JPG

    I shall order some of these wondrous glasses after the tour concludes. Believe me… any beer poured into this fine chalice shall be transformed! Except PBR. Can’t help you there.

    19 (resized).JPG

    Return of the Woodrail. The third film in any trilogy is often the worst, and this 1959 Hi-Diver was threatening to fulfill that role by not starting or stopping correctly... and no schematic, either. But I was determined not to get licked a third time and, like the clown on the backglass, dove straight off the diving board into the game over and start interlock relays. Found a few switches out of alignment and cleaned the interlocks… and…

    20 (resized).JPG

    Victory! Woodrail three, I beat ye. The curse is broken.

    22 (resized).JPG

    At the end of day two, Orin’s EM-basement was well on the way to making a full recovery. I identified the main cause of Wiggler’s locked-on bell coil as this: Dirty gunked-up score reels. Both it and Big Day would be fully operational after a complete head-to-toe cleaning… which Orin was now prepared to tackle. And, uh, I think I’d like to own both of these games someday.

    21 (resized).JPG

    Remember when I got my butt kicked by Lee on Trade Winds, the Williams reverse-wedgehead? This is how they fit together with Gottlieb wedges… perfectly! From left to right, Volley (restored to service), Zig-Zag (in need of a full rebuild), and Sweet Hearts (had a missing jones connector and sprang to life once corrected).

    23 (resized).JPG

    Time for the big reveal: I served up another win in the EM home challenge. Now in need of Orin’s rightmost digit to display the current 6-1 tally.

    It seems Volley is getting a lot of love lately in EM-land, and rightfully so. Surfer and Jacks Open have higher ratings on the IPDB popularity charts, but I find Volley to be the superior game. Simple rules, great flow, fun shots. I only wish it was a 2-player!

    24 (resized).JPG

    It was a pleasure to meet Orin, hear his story, and see his diverse collection. I’d never played Twister or Starship Troopers before. It was a lot of fun playing them while having the rules and history explained as we went along. Including a few easter eggs.

    Orin’s pinball basement is filled with many of the games he worked on. As well as a number of beloved classic Ballys like Paragon, Elektra, and Future Spa. He also owns what may be the world’s nicest HUO Demolition Man which was incredible to behold. It was smooth as glass and every inch of it sparkled. And, geez, he’s really good at it too. Totally ran away with the score before I even had a chance. But this is to be expected from a guy wearing a Pinburgh tee and a couple dozen pinball machines on his resume, right?

    Next stop -> Madison, VA

    #380 2 years ago

    link for dremel tool

    amazon.com link »

    #381 2 years ago

    On the oiling thing... I only apply it lightly to spindles. Things like rotating gear shafts and armatures, wiping off the excess to leave only a thin layer behind.

    In the future I may or may not reverse my position on this. So far, it seems fine, and makes only a tiny difference to appease what feels right to my fingers. But as always your mileage may vary.

    The Magic Brush, on the other hand, is absolutely the way to go. It will change the course of the hobby as we move forward... count on it.

    #383 2 years ago

    I should have one, but so far I've resisted because of the way they look. There is a limit as to how dorky I will allow this hobby to make me.

    Good idea though. I'll stash one in my private workshop eventually.

    #384 2 years ago
    Quoted from NicoVolta:

    I should have one, but so far I've resisted because of the way they look. There is a limit as to how dorky I will allow this hobby to make me.

    Embrace your inner dork. There is no substitute for using a headlamp as far as getting light where you need it.
    Plus, since I deer hunt, I can use it for walking in to my stand in the early morning darkness.

    #385 2 years ago
    Quoted from NicoVolta:

    I should have one, but so far I've resisted because of the way they look. There is a limit as to how dorky I will allow this hobby to make me.
    Good idea though. I'll stash one in my private workshop eventually.

    This is the bad boy I have been using for the last 10 years. Spendy, but lasts forever, super bright, & well built.
    I use mine every day - good lighting is essential.

    amazon.com link »
    I totally agree on the Dremel with wire brush for cleaning contacts. I picked up on it a couple of years ago from the Bingo pin guys. Hands down the only way to go.

    #386 2 years ago
    Quoted from dasvis:

    This is the bad boy I have been using for the last 10 years. Spendy, but lasts forever, super bright, & well built.
    I use mine every day - good lighting is essential.
    amazon.com link »
    I totally agree on the Dremel with wire brush for cleaning contacts. I picked up on it a couple of years ago from the Bingo pin guys. Hands down the only way to go.

    I hate the ones with the overhead strap. We have a lot of LED Lenser dealers around. That's a similar headlight but without the overhead strap. But I sometimes misplace mine so it's better to lose a ten dollar one than a hundred dollar one.

    Don't worry about your looks. Wear it with a Indiana Jones hat like I do and you'll look super cool.

    #387 2 years ago
    Quoted from NicoVolta:

    I should have one, but so far I've resisted because of the way they look. There is a limit as to how dorky I will allow this hobby to make me.
    Good idea though. I'll stash one in my private workshop eventually.

    You are not alone, Nic! I have had a headlight in my tool case for over a year and it has yet to Grace my forehead for the same reason.

    Instead, I prefer the germ laden mini flashlight gripped firmly between my teeth.

    Besides, it would mess up my "do".

    #388 2 years ago

    I buy the really large 'police' headlamps with multiple settings. Unfortunately, the plastic housing always breaks, but they provide a great deal of light right where you need it. I get them from Harbor Freight, less than $10.

    I look stupid all the time anyway, why not when I work on machines?

    #389 2 years ago
    Quoted from bingopodcast:

    I look stupid all the time anyway, why not when I work on machines?

    Agree, I already own a Jokerz, the machine already laughs at me all the time. No reason to stop and consider new sources.

    #390 2 years ago
    Quoted from CactusJack:

    .
    Instead, I prefer the germ laden mini flashlight gripped firmly between my teeth.

    Yeah, my dad did that too, until he was working on a wall socket & touched the wrong thing. Surprised him & he bit down breaking a front tooth off. I bought him a headlamp for Christmas......

    #391 2 years ago
    Quoted from dasvis:

    Yeah, my dad did that too, until he was working on a wall socket & touched the wrong thing. Surprised him & he bit down breaking a front tooth off. I bought him a headlamp for Christmas......

    I like to turn the breaker off when I am working on Wall Sockets.

    Not sure which is more geeky, a Head Lamp or this:

    https://www.safetyonline.com/doc/lite-bite-mini-flashlight-0001

    #392 2 years ago

    Why not geek out all the way, and do like UK band Orbital?

    orbital (resized).jpg

    #393 2 years ago
    Quoted from CactusJack:

    I like to turn the breaker off when I am working on Wall Sockets.

    Me too ....

    #394 2 years ago
    Quoted from Axl:

    Why not geek out all the way, and do like UK band Orbital?

    OK maybe that's doable. Would have to wear a black turtleneck when in use though.

    #395 2 years ago
    Quoted from NicoVolta:

    OK maybe that's doable. Would have to wear a black turtleneck when in use though.

    Black unitard. Totally doable..

    #396 2 years ago

    Will you be at Allentown Pinfest on Saturday?

    #397 2 years ago
    Quoted from JOESCHALL:

    Will you be at Allentown Pinfest on Saturday?

    Yep!

    #398 2 years ago

    Good deal. I'll plan to look you up and say hello if I can. I think this is a great thing you're doing!

    #400 2 years ago

    and ditto that... can't be the last post on the page yanno...

    Promoted items from the Pinside Marketplace
    $ 6,995.00
    Pinball Machine
    Nitro Pinball Shop
    $ 22.00
    Hardware
    The MOD Couple
    From: $ 45.95
    Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
    pinballmod
    $ 14.00
    Cabinet - Decals
    ModFather Pinball Mods
    From: $ 38.00
    Playfield - Other
    Pin Monk
    From: $ 175.00
    Gameroom - Decorations
    Pinball Photos
    $ 48.00
    Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
    ModFather Pinball Mods
    From: $ 9.99
    Eproms
    Matt's Basement Arcade
    From: $ 12.99
    Eproms
    Matt's Basement Arcade
    From: $ 132.30
    Cabinet - Sound/Speakers
    PinWoofer
    $ 39.00
    Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
    Sparky Pinball
    $ 115.95
    Cabinet - Shooter Rods
    Super Skill Shot Shop
    $ 20.00
    Playfield - Decals
    Pinball Haus
    $ 70.00
    Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
    PinWorlds
    $ 15.00
    $ 99.99
    Lighting - Other
    Lighted Pinball Mods
    $ 119.99
    Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
    Lighted Pinball Mods
    $ 49.00
    Cabinet - Other
    Chrome Candy
    $ 12,500.00
    Pinball Machine
    Great American Pinball
    $ 15.00
    Playfield - Decals
    Metal-Mods
    $ 20.00
    Electronics
    Yorktown Parts and Equip
    $ 24.00
    $ 76.95
    Cabinet - Shooter Rods
    Super Skill Shot Shop
    $ 25.00
    Boards
    German-Pinball-Modular
    There are 2313 posts in this topic. You are on page 8 of 47.

    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