(Topic ID: 261069)

Please have pity for a newbie

By Sinballer

1 year ago


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  • 15 posts
  • 7 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by Sinballer
  • Topic is favorited by 3 Pinsiders

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#1 1 year ago

I first posted here about a month ago and had some very helpful people direct me to some beginner's resource material. I've checked these out and have been trying to educate myself to the point where I can begin to talk (semi) intelligently on this forum. I'm hoping that I'm at that point now.

I'm trying to breathe the kiss of life back into a Space Odyssey machine that's been dormant for many years.
I've taken it about as far as my limited knowledge allows and am looking for some guidance on what type of things I should be looking at next.

I've done a lot of visual inspection on all of the switches (while manually activating the relays, solenoids, etc.).
I've also rebuilt the 3 main stepper units (which definitely needed it!) and am 99.9% sure these are functioning normally now.

The status of the machine right now is as follows;
-Powers on and most lamps light up (I haven't yet started testing/replacing bulbs - waiting on a parts order).
-Credit unit steps up when I manually activate the coin door switches.
-When I press the START (reset??) button at the front to start the game, the credit unit steps down, the RESET and COIN relays activate and the score counters reset to zeros. At this point, none of the scoring functions, flippers, bumpers, etc. are working.
-If a ball is present at the drain area, the description above applies plus the score motor rotates continuously and the BONUS relay activates once per cycle (twice per revolution).

That's where I am right now. I'm hoping some generous soul will have pity on me and give me some direction on where/what to be looking at next. I've got a fairly strong background in electro-mechanics but none of it on pinball machines. With limited time available to dedicate to this, I'm finding it a bit overwhelming to get into it further.

Any help would be most appreciated. Thx in advance!!

#4 1 year ago
Quoted from MrBally:Your Bonus Unit is not going to the full reset position. Or, at least the circuitry is not detecting this. So many possibilities.
Standard electrical and electro-mechanical troubleshooting techniques apply.

I may be missing something here. I thought that my BONUS UNIT steps up and steps down, It doesn't reset all at once. Is that correct? When you say "the full reset position", should it be stepping down several times to get there or all at once? I do see the switches changing state when it gets to the reset position (when the plastic post moves the switches).

Quoted from HowardR:

What's the Outhole relay doing when this happens?

The OUTHOLE relay does nothing at all at any point.

#9 1 year ago

Thanks for these very detailed responses. This stuff is like gold to me (especially LeChuck’s startup flow description!!). This was exactly the type of information I needed to at least point me in the right direction and give me a jumping off point to stay trouble-shooting. I’ll work on it a while a post again when things change.
Incidentally, the ball does not get kicked out of the outhole.
Thank you all again for the help!

2 weeks later
#10 1 year ago

Not sure if it's better to continue to post in this topic thread or to start a new one (any opinions on that?).
I'm going to continue with this one so I don't have to re-type a lot of background info again.

I'm having a lot of trouble figuring out how and where to start trouble-shooting this issue.
From some of these posts as well as some of the reference info I've been reading, I agree that it does have something to do with the Bonus Unit reset not being recognized somehow. I've built a test light (per Steve Fury's instructions - thx for that) but I haven't had much luck using it yet.
I had thought I was going to be fairly competent with this stuff but so far it's proving to be a humbling experience. Hopefully, once I get going a get a little more comfortable with what I'm doing, things should be less frustrating for me.

For now, there are a few questions I'd like to ask of you. One general and one specific.

-The general question is...Is there any reference material (other than the machine manual) that describes what the individual relays are responsible for?
Some are fairly obvious (tilt, reset, etc.) but some of them are still confusing to me. An example would be the Coin Setup Relay. Is there somewhere that explains, in straightforward terms, what all of the individual relays will do when energized?

-The specific one has to do with the startup sequence of my machine.
I wanted to confirm that my Bonus Unit will do a reset properly so I stepped it up manually a few positions before pressing the reset button to start a new game. It did step down properly to it's zero (reset) position. I was about to start my troubleshooting from this point. I turned the power off and jumpered out the Outhole switch (to simulate a ball in the Outhole). I also advanced the Bonus Unit a few steps. When I turn the power switch back on, the Bonus Unit immediately starts stepping down to its reset position. This happens before I even press the Reset button to start a new game.
Is this normal??
I thought several other things had to happen first, especially the pressing of the Reset button to start the whole reset sequence going.
Incidentally, when I remove the jumper at the Outhole switch, it the Bonus Unit does not do its reset until after the Reset button is pressed.
I don't want to go chasing a ghost. I just need to know if this is normal behaviour or if it may somehow be related to my problem.

Thx in advance for any words of wisdom you can toss my way!

#14 1 year ago

WHOOO HOOOO!!!
Guess who's playing pinball?
This guy!!!

My Game Over relay wasn't latching.
I cleaned/adjusted the Score Motor switch 1A.
I also had to clean/adjust a switch on the Game Over relay itself, which wasn't turning on the Swinging Target motor.
Everything seems to be functioning correctly now.

I just have a couple of minor complaints right now and would like some advice on dealing with them.
1-My Player relay buzzes loudly, on an intermittent (but annoying) basis.
How serious is this? And is it just a matter of cleaning/adjusting?
2-Loud buzzing when I hold the flipper switches in.
I believe this is EOS adjusting. Correct??
I need to change the flippers anyway (they're scratching up my near-flawless playfield graphics!!) so I will go over the whole assembly as I do so.
3-Loud Swinging Target assembly.
I believe it needs to be lubricated.
Any tips/suggestions regarding type of lube and application?

Now, I can move on to the fun part - making it fast and pretty! New rubber, bulbs, wax, etc.

I am missing a couple of parts and I'm going start a new thread to see if anyone can help me with that but I thought I'd throw it out here just in case.
I know that one of the parts I need - the actuator plate for the Match unit - is as hard to find as rocking-horse sh*t but I'm hoping someone has an extra or a cannibalized machine that still has one and is willing to part with it.
The other part I need, in order to restore this machine faithfully, is the Knocker assembly. I have the connecting cable but, for whatever strange reason, someone has removed the entire knocker assembly from this machine. I can get another manufacturer's knocker from Pinball Resource but they're kind of pricey so they suggested I first try to find one from the Pinside community (likely from a near-junked machine).
Please let me know if you can help with either of these (or, if you can point me in the direction of someone who can).

#15 1 year ago

Oooops.
I forgot to thank all of you who responded and helped me out with this.
The old cliche "I couldn't have done it without you" has never been more true.

Special thanks to LeChuck, whose patient explanations and relevant excerpts of highlighted schematics helped immensely.
It felt like cheating (it probably was) but you saved me hours and hours of frustration (or learning??).

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