Quoted from mbwalker:
One thing I do is to take detailed pictures of the boards before anything happens. And the bottom of the playfield and backbox from all kind kinds of angles. Those pics are more so for wires/nuts/bolts, etc. But for the boards I really try to zoom in on parts so I can see part numbers, RefDes numbers, maybe traces.
No doubt about it tho, a schematic sure would make life easier.
With that much info going on in that photo, I would have no problems repairing it. If a component stymies me, then I look at the components it is wired to and guess. But the biggest help is another working node board, which you can take test points off of and compare to your broke board... this usually will point you in a direction... right or wrong, it points you to a possible fault. What we need is info on what is failing. So the people saying they have fixed one should enlighten us to what was wrong and what they did to fix it. Now there is a good NODE board thread to start, instead of a twisted nipple rant thread about the fact THAT they are failing, we start one on the HOW, WHY, and WHAT on how to repair them.
But the point about vibration isolation is a good point. If you want to limit shock in the node boards, mount them on velco. Back at Grimes Aerospace, we used velcro to mount things and reduce shock and other vibrations using it. It gives a good hold but disipates the shock loads and other mechanical vibrational sources like shakers, sound system, solenoids, dropped cabinets, kicked cabinets, bar fights, spouse fights, furniture and fixtures thrown in anger, etc...