(Topic ID: 120916)

Polish Pinballs in tumbler?


By toro1966

4 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 26 posts
  • 20 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 years ago by Freeplay40
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

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    #1 4 years ago

    Hey guys - It's time to replace the pinballs in the machines again. I was getting ready to order new ones when I started wondering if I could just tumble them with some polish and walnut media and get them looking/working well again.

    I searched a lot of threads comparing pinballs. Some mentioned tumbling but never really finished the train of thought - meaning - does it work and does it make sense to do? at $5 a ball, if I can tumble them back to like new again instead of spending $100 - I will. Yes, I realize in the grand scheme of things putting $100 in a $5000+ pin is not a huge deal. But I hate wasting money and usually I throw the old pinballs away. Seems like a waste....

    Thanks!

    #2 4 years ago

    You can replace all of your balls for every game in your collection for less than $30 even buying premium balls. You could save $10 and just buy standard balls.

    http://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=1325

    Tumbling them doesnt work very well and isnt worth it IMO.

    #3 4 years ago

    I would just suggest trying it. Take 3 or 6 or more pinballs, and leave them in the tumbler for a few days with some fresh polish, and see how they turn out...

    For me, they turn out much better than where they were. They don't return to a "perfect" polish like a new ball.

    -mof

    #4 4 years ago

    Need a new ball supplier see post above. Polish them up and toss them in a gumball machine, not a pinball machine.

    #5 4 years ago

    Woah, who's charging $5 for a pinball? I want to hear this!

    Get Pinball Life glossies. They look great, hold up great, and they're magnet friendly, so you can use them in any game.

    #6 4 years ago

    You can make them shiny that's about it. Not good to use back in your machine if the pinballs are pitted/scratched etc. to begin with because just polishing will not take it 'down' enough even if using walnut media.

    If you have a gumball machine and decide to start tossing them in there, use caution as quite a few stories of those that did and broke the globe from 'pressure' if a lot of pinballs in it.

    #7 4 years ago
    Quoted from Aurich:

    Woah, who's charging $5 for a pinball? I want to hear this!
    Get Pinball Life glossies. They look great, hold up great, and they're magnet friendly, so you can use them in any game.

    Yup - Silverjets from Marco - $16.95 for a 5 pack + shipping of course....

    I'll probably end up just getting the ones from pinball life....The problem is that I also need some new pop switch spoons for my Mata Hari and it doesn't look like PBL sells them. Was hoping to get everything from the same place to save on shipping.

    #8 4 years ago

    Well, as it so happens, I've got a few tumbling for a few hours now. We just got a tumbler, so I took the walnut media, a splurch of polish, and 6 or 7 balls. Put it all in there. Will see tomorrow if some results are in.

    #9 4 years ago

    I cannot believe no one jumped on the "polish" vs. "Polish" angle...

    But yeah, given the price and longevity, replacement is the way to go. (Paying $5/ball? Whaaaaat?)

    #10 4 years ago

    Walnut media, and some flitz works wonders on TZ powerballs! I thought I'd give it a try before throwing away $30+ on a new one.

    The last time I polished my balls (tee hee) with walnut/flitz they came out looking brand new. But, like Cash said, if they are damaged, pitted, or badly scratched I would just replace them.

    #11 4 years ago
    Quoted from Triumvirat73:

    Walnut media, and some flitz works wonders on TZ powerballs! I thought I'd give it a try before throwing away $30+ on a new one.
    The last time I polished my balls (tee hee) with walnut/flitz they came out looking brand new. But, like Cash said, if they are damaged, pitted, or badly scratched I would just replace them.

    Actually, they aren't really damaged or pitted at all. I just usually replace them every 6 months or so.

    #12 4 years ago

    If you are replacing every six months I would just buy the standard balls. I buy 5 about every time I order from Marcos. The shipping is what it is so I usually pile up a large order periodically to make it worth it.

    #13 4 years ago
    Quoted from jmountjoy111:

    If you are replacing every six months I would just buy the standard balls. I buy 5 about every time I order from Marcos. The shipping is what it is so I usually pile up a large order periodically to make it worth it.

    Dumb question but does it make any sense to tumble the standard balls before i use them if I get them?

    #14 4 years ago

    I tumble them when they arrive rusty/dirty in container machines.. 90% come up like new. 10% are pitted and they go in the scrap bin. Its got its merits

    #15 4 years ago

    I just buy the cheap carbon steel balls. replacing balls in 20 machines at a time gets expensive real quick.

    #16 4 years ago

    Look under high mag and do a good visual then give them a go in the tumbler
    What have you got to lose. I don't have tumbler but would try with just a large piece of never dull lining the barrel.
    I love that stuff. Science experiment report back.

    #17 4 years ago

    I buy standard pinballs, tumble them in corncob media and flitz additive for 12-18 hours, then store them in a large can of white lithium grease. Never run out of pinballs and they polish great in a berry tumbler.

    Look like round mirrors when done. I've done this for years.

    #18 4 years ago

    You guys are really ball-sy.

    Ba dum bump.

    #19 4 years ago
    Quoted from scottslash:

    I cannot believe no one jumped on the "polish" vs. "Polish" angle...
    (Paying $5/ball? Whaaaaat?)

    I'm on it.
    You can put Polish balls in the tumbler as well as balls manufactured in the US. No problem.

    --
    Chris Hibler - CARGPB #31
    http://www.Team-EM.com
    http://webpages.charter.net/chibler/Pinball/index.tm
    http://www.PinWiki.com - The Place to go for Pinball Repair Info

    #20 4 years ago

    ^^^Wise guy huh? ; ) ^^^. I guess somebody had to do it!

    Hope all is well Chris!

    #21 4 years ago

    Personally I like to fry my fingers and polish them on a buffer... Very shiny!

    #22 4 years ago
    Quoted from Freeplay40:

    Personally I like to fry my fingers and polish them on a buffer... Very shiny!

    Funny - I do exactly the same! They look like new afterwards. Fast and cheap.

    #23 4 years ago
    Quoted from jmountjoy111:

    The shipping is what it is

    Marcos sending to Australia, cost out of control. I now try and use PinballCenter just cos of the shipping.

    #24 4 years ago

    they'll polish better with Swedish meatballs? (groan)
    ebay.com link

    link might be helpful for ya

    #25 4 years ago
    Quoted from Chrisbee:

    Marcos sending to Australia, cost out of control. I now try and use PinballCenter just cos of the shipping.

    I feel your pain. I am searching for Demolition Man plastics and misc ramps and can find them all over Europe but I really don't need them bad enough to pay the high shipping costs.

    #26 4 years ago
    Quoted from BioBa:

    Funny - I do exactly the same! They look like new afterwards. Fast and cheap.

    I even run brand new balls over the buffer...can't beat the shine they get.

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