Playfield Arch Ball Track Protector

(Topic ID: 226862)

Playfield Arch Ball Track Protector

By SilverWings

71 days ago

Topic Stats

  • 3 posts
  • 2 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 71 days ago by SilverWings
  • No one calls this topic a favorite


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    #1 71 days ago

    One thing that seems to almost always be present on pinball playfields is a heavy ball track along the upper arch path, and under the rebound bumper. Ball spin aggressively eats away at the surface, and its made all the worse where the rebound bumper literally hammers the ball the opposite direction. What to do about that?

    I recently acquired a spec built Kings & Queens (thanks Ken!) equipped with a brand new Wade Krause playfield. What a beauty! Really wanting some extra protection along that arch/rebound track I decided to layout a pattern for a 3-mil Mylar protector. After measuring the relevant geometry, I programmed a path to cut the pattern using a drag knife in my CNC mill.

    First we'll cut the pattern in paper for a test fit and positioning. Then the Mylar will be cut, positioned and rubbed down.

    Step 1: With the arch metal still in place, the paper pattern is cut then lightly taped in place for a test fit and to position the piece where I want it:
    Paper Template

    Step 2: Positioning the Mylar will require some care and precision. For that, several small pieces of blue tape are cut and positioned along the inner edge of the paper pattern. Then the pattern will be removed, leaving the positioning tape. Here we have the arch metal taken off; and the positioning pieces in place:

    Template w/positioning pieces

    Final Product: Its nearly invisible! I've played it extensively and can honestly say the Mylar doesn't seem to affect the ball's behavior at all. No more worries about ball track wear on this baby!

    Protector in place
    Can you see it?
    Brand New Ks&Qs!

    I've also now installed an arch wear protector on 2 other machines and those both turned out just as nice. Considering making these available to other Pinsiders who can supply accurate PF geometry needed to size and place the protector. Thoughts?

    #2 71 days ago

    curious how well it'd work on already worn playfields

    #3 71 days ago

    zacaj - I wondered the same thing. So on my *nearly* perfect C37 which did have a ball track eating well into the lacquer clear coat I had to first repair the worn-in track.

    This was done by first applying fresh lacquer into the track with a very fine artists brush. Then to match the look of the surrounding areas I used a medium tinted Shellac again brush applied. Wood grain was faux-replicated across the track as best I could. Without actually sanding the ball track off, it was very difficult to make the track disappear entirely but its probably 90% gone now and with the protector in place things won't get any worse.

    The Mylar protector is applied in the pictures below. From the players perspective its just barely visible.

    IMG_0221 (resized).jpgIMG_0222 (resized).jpgIMG_0223 (resized).jpg
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