(Topic ID: 225496)

Stern Electronics Club (1977-1984).


By Mitch

1 year ago



Topic Stats

  • 2,441 posts
  • 203 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 20 hours ago by BrianBannon
  • Topic is favorited by 101 Pinsiders

You

Linked Games

Topic Gallery

There have been 733 images uploaded to this topic. (View topic image gallery).

catdrop (resized).jpg
20191115_210609 (resized).jpg
FAF62236-D611-4528-B536-993FAED6E33F (resized).jpeg
6AC6F0DD-2F6E-4B8C-996E-7F4E58AF68E7 (resized).jpeg
16BFC20A-F6CB-4BE7-BD74-26B9182361C0 (resized).jpeg
IMG_2346 (resized).JPG
IMG_6154 (resized).JPG
IMG_20191027_184835 (resized).jpg
IMG_2269 (resized).JPG
IMG_2268 (resized).JPG
IMG_2267 (resized).JPG
IMG_2266 (resized).JPG
IMG_2264 (resized).JPG
IMG_2230 (resized).JPG
IMG_2234 (resized).JPG
IMG_2231 (resized).JPG

Topic index (key posts)

7 key posts have been marked in this topic (Show topic index)

There are 2441 posts in this topic. You are on page 28 of 49.
#1351 7 months ago

Quick question, since we are on the topic.
Are these plastic pop bumper bases (from Pinball Life) exactly the same as the plastic Stern bases shown above?
I would like to switch my old Quicksilver bases to these black ones but I thought I had read that these ones will only work with metal pop bumper rings?
Thanks in advance!
545-5100-00-1_264x300 (resized).jpg

#1352 7 months ago
Quoted from klr650:

Quick question, since we are on the topic.
Are these plastic pop bumper bases (from Pinball Life) exactly the same as the plastic Stern bases shown above?
I would like to switch my old Quicksilver bases to these black ones but I thought I had read that these ones will only work with metal pop bumper rings?
Thanks in advance!
[quoted image]

These will work. For the most part they are the same. The holes for the pop bumper switch are threaded. That’s the only real difference and of course the color. I bought them for a Star Gazer I’m putting together. The only issue I had is with the size of the holes the plastic pop rings go through. They are just a bit too small but all I had to do was drill them out a little larger.

#1353 7 months ago
Quoted from canoncitypb:What are these? are they the plastic pop rings? Anyone know why they are plastic? is this better? I can't figure out what they are sitting in...

Stern Electronics designed an almost entirely plastic pop bumper. They started using these in Cheetah and every game produced afterward. They are unique in that the pop bumper ring, the base, and yoke are all made from plastic. Data East used a similar plastic base but they ditched the plastic ring and yoke and went back to metal parts.

As for why Stern decided to use this design, I’m not entirely sure. From what I’ve seen from the progression of the parts design they seemed to focus a lot on cutting cost. The plastic parts were probably cheaper. I’d guess the answer is as simple as that.

The plastic pops are quieter than the metal design from their earlier games. Some people claim they make the ball travel faster because the pop rings are lighter(?). I’d guess that the flex from the plastic would absorb engery and slow down the ball more than metal rings. Honestly I can’t tell much of a difference other than the sound. They are somewhat unique to this era of pins and add a bit of character. I plan on putting a set in my Seawitch to see if they make a difference.

I wish you could still buy the rings and yokes but they’ve been out of stock from parts vendors for a while. You can still buy the base but only in black and blue. I also wish someone made them in white. The Stern bases seem to crack easily, but after more than 35 years the plastic may not hold up well.

#1354 7 months ago
Quoted from canoncitypb:

What are these? are they the plastic pop rings? Anyone know why they are plastic? is this better? I can't figure out what they are sitting in...

https://www.pinballlife.com/classic-sterndata-eastsegacapcomalvin-gspookyheighway-thumper-bumper-housingbase.html

The plastic base is nicer, IMO, in that the switches mount directly to the base. If you set your play field wiring up with Molex connectors you can remove the complete assembly from your play field and do a super job of adjusting and aligning your switches and spoon on the table instead of having to stand on your head inside the cab (Bally had something similar but not as classy as these).

The plastic rings are from Wico and Stern. They are lighter than the metal pop rings. They move fast and hit hard. And they are no longer available. And there is no metal-to-metal contact with the ball for less ball scratching.

#1355 7 months ago
Quoted from kickabit:

The Stern bases seem to crack easily, but after more than 35 years the plastic may not hold up well.

They are fairly solid. They take super glue very well so they can be patched if needed. You can make a patch by cutting up and old drop target and bonding it to the broken area. Smooth the patch with a file and you are go to go.

This is a Bally pop bumper base of similar style. I'm not sure but I think this is discontinued, as well.

Screen Shot 2019-03-23 at 11.17.12 PM (resized).png

#1356 7 months ago
Quoted from bluespin:

Many of them are purchased in the us and brought over the border

All of mine are Canadian original. Most came with the canadain electric sticker they put on them when they were brand new and most have the extra isolation transformer

#1357 7 months ago
Quoted from Mitch:

All of mine are Canadian original. Most came with the canadain electric sticker they put on them when they were brand new and most have the extra isolation transformer

Do you guys leave those electric stickers on the pins when you buy them? My Dragonfist came from Canada and still has a little sticker on the apron.

#1358 7 months ago
Quoted from cottonm4:

Do you guys leave those electric stickers on the pins when you buy them? My Dragonfist came from Canada and still has a little sticker on the apron.

I hope you pulled the second transformer out.
Dont need the isolation transformer and they waste electricity. They always run even when the game is off.

I sometimes remove the stickers.

#1359 7 months ago
Quoted from kickabit:

Stern Electronics designed an almost entirely plastic pop bumper. They started using these in Cheetah and every game produced afterward. They are unique in that the pop bumper ring, the base, and yoke are all made from plastic. Data East used a similar plastic base but they ditched the plastic ring and yoke and went back to metal parts.
As for why Stern decided to use this design, I’m not entirely sure. From what I’ve seen from the progression of the parts design they seemed to focus a lot on cutting cost. The plastic parts were probably cheaper. I’d guess the answer is as simple as that.
The plastic pops are quieter than the metal design from their earlier games. Some people claim they make the ball travel faster because the pop rings are lighter(?). I’d guess that the flex from the plastic would absorb engery and slow down the ball more than metal rings. Honestly I can’t tell much of a difference other than the sound. They are somewhat unique to this era of pins and add a bit of character. I plan on putting a set in my Seawitch to see if they make a difference.
I wish you could still buy the rings and yokes but they’ve been out of stock from parts vendors for a while. You can still buy the base but only in black and blue. I also wish someone made them in white. The Stern bases seem to crack easily, but after more than 35 years the plastic may not hold up well.

Stern didn't design them. They purchased the assemblies, like most other assemblies at the time, from Wico.

IIRC, Allied Leisure was using these long before Stern.

Jim

#1360 7 months ago
Quoted from Mitch:

I hope you pulled the second transformer out.
Dont need the isolation transformer and they waste electricity. They always run even when the game is off.
I sometimes remove the stickers.

I got it from a Canadian retailer. The transformer was already gone. Pin was already prepped to come across the border.

#1361 7 months ago
Quoted from cottonm4:

https://www.pinballlife.com/classic-sterndata-eastsegacapcomalvin-gspookyheighway-thumper-bumper-housingbase.html
The plastic base is nicer, IMO, in that the switches mount directly to the base. If you set your play field wiring up with Molex connectors you can remove the complete assembly from your play field and do a super job of adjusting and aligning your switches and spoon on the table instead of having to stand on your head inside the cab (Bally had something similar but not as classy as these).
The plastic rings are from Wico and Stern. They are lighter than the metal pop rings. They move fast and hit hard. And they are no longer available. And there is no metal-to-metal contact with the ball for less ball scratching.

Good point about the switch mounting to the base. I do like that the entire assembly is connected to the base.

#1362 7 months ago
Quoted from canoncitypb:

What are these? are they the plastic pop rings? Anyone know why they are plastic? is this better? I can't figure out what they are sitting in...

Yes they are plastic. Lightweight, faster response time and they won’t scratch the ball. They are sitting in the base that mounts under the playfield.

#1363 7 months ago
Quoted from dothedoo:

Yes they are plastic. Lightweight, faster response time and they won’t scratch the ball. They are sitting in the base that mounts under the playfield.

I’m not trying to start an argument but how do you know the response time is faster? I understand the plastic rings are lighter and should pull down and release faster. I imagine the release would be where there’s more of a perceivable difference in performance compared to the metal rings hence better response time.

#1364 7 months ago

Wondering if I could get some help.
I have a new Stern meteor in my collection. It had been playing fairly well for a couple weeks. Last week, occasionally, not all the time, while playing a game, the game would go into reset, during which time the flippers would fall dead, the game would spontaneously boot and go through the five beeps, and then with hitting the credit button a new game would start and play well for a couple games. Weird.

Anyway, last night I turn it on, 5 solid beeps and game turns on. Attract mode shows normal lighting sequence, however, when I hit the start button the game is stuck with a single audio tone, lights going crazy, points are scoring for no reason. I also notice that the drop targets are not popping back up. They are all depressed, and do not pop back up when the game is turned back on.

This is my first older solid state, and so it's a bit of a learning curve for me. And in general, I am relatively new to working on pinballs in general. I did take a look at all the wiring. I found one shotty wire by the coin door which I resoldered. All of the wires otherwise looked good. No wires crossing or touching. I checked out all of the fuses and I do not see any blown fuses. All of the LEDs in the rectifier board at the base of the cabinet all have solid green light. coils at the drop targets are not hot. I see no burned coils. I do not see anything unusual in the back box when I mostly look at the boards.

I know this has to be something that is fixable, I just have no earthly clue right now. Does this sound familiar to anyone? Can anyone offer any helpful tips or suggestions so that I can get this bad boy up and running. This is such a great game, I hate that it's not functioning well. Thanks in advance everybody.

#1365 7 months ago

Rebuild or replace the power board, & re-pin the connectors on it to start.

#1366 7 months ago

Mpu sockets been replaced? I'd do the 5101's first for this issue.

#1367 7 months ago

For someone new to pinball repair to rebuild a power board or put new sockets on an MPU is not really possible. Chip, you are gonna need to learn how to repin connectors on these games. You might want to consider buying an Alltek MPU board. They also sell the trifecta(new MPU, Lamp driver bd, ultimate solenoid driver bd). These machines are very old and repairs of course can be made to the existing boards, but sometimes it's just better to get new stuff in there. Great Plains Electronics sells a replacement power board, and another company(Weebly, maybe?)

Also need to learn how to use a meter. Looking at fuses sometimes won't tell you a thing. Removing the fuse and testing ohms with a meter is the only reliable way to test. You can also use a meter set to DC volts to check your voltages on the power board, see if you have voltage at the coil, etc. You can use a meter set to AC volts to check your inputs to the power board coming from the transformer. Also, you will probably get more help in a technical thread rather than a "club" thread. Good luck with your Meteor. Such a great game!

#1368 7 months ago
Quoted from LOTR_breath:

For someone new to pinball repair to rebuild a power board or put new sockets on an MPU is not really possible.

No better way to learn.
As a newbie starting with zero experience, I rebuilt all of the boards on an acid damaged Bally -35 pin (including replacing sockets). It's not rocket science... anyone with a decent soldering iron & a manual solder sucker can do it. Plenty of good online guides out there. Part of pin repair is diagnosing & repairing. Just slapping new boards in is an expensive shotgun approach.

#1369 7 months ago

I'm a 30 year experienced technician and sometimes I just slap 'em in. Just sayin!

#1370 7 months ago
Quoted from dasvis:

Rebuild or replace the power board, & re-pin the connectors on it to start.

Quoted from ChipScott:

All of the LEDs in the rectifier board at the base of the cabinet all have solid green light.

The original rectifier board doesn't have LEDs so this indicates the board has already been replaced.

Did you fix the wire on the coin door before or after the weird behavior started?

#1371 7 months ago

Just have some minor touch ups to do on the Backglass, & then I think Drac is done.... I've been playing the heck out of it & loving it.

IMG_2239 (resized).jpgIMG_2241 (resized).jpgIMG_2242 (resized).jpgIMG_2243 (resized).jpg
#1372 7 months ago
Quoted from dothedoo:

The original rectifier board doesn't have LEDs so this indicates the board has already been replaced.
Did you fix the wire on the coin door before or after the weird behavior started?

After the wierd behavior started. Unfortunately, it did not fix anything .
I appreciate everyone's responses and suggestions. I will continue to work on this game to get it back in action. It is such a great game! I thank you all for taking the time to offer input.

#1373 7 months ago
Quoted from WeatherbyMAG:

Just have some minor touch ups to do on the Backglass, & then I think Drac is done.... I've been playing the heck out of it & loving it.
[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

That's a nice looking Dracula. Consider placing a black towel or other protective barrier between the two backboxes so they don't get beat up.

#1374 7 months ago
Quoted from WeatherbyMAG:

Just have some minor touch ups to do on the Backglass, & then I think Drac is done.... I've been playing the heck out of it & loving it.
[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

I love the cheesy artwork on Drac, classic Stern at it's best!

#1375 7 months ago

Thinking about selling off all my classic Sterns.

#1376 7 months ago

Here are some pics from the restored Galaxy that my dad won Best 80's Pin at TPF with.

4F67CED2-50E9-4CB1-A61E-E688BFC0AECF (resized).jpeg941B8F66-1DB3-479C-BFA3-70F279CDFE7B (resized).jpegC0F7B9E7-7837-4E7B-A9D6-32EF961E88E0 (resized).jpegEFA9C12D-BBB5-45FA-A28F-78E7BF14C9EB (resized).jpeg
#1378 7 months ago
Quoted from Gov:

Here are some pics from the restored Galaxy that my dad won Best 80's Pin at TPF with.[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

Wait......that was your dad? I was probably talking to you and didn't even know it. We need to formally meet next year.

#1379 7 months ago
Quoted from dothedoo:

Wait......that was your dad? I was probably talking to you and didn't even know it. We need to formally meet next year.

Yeah

#1380 7 months ago
Quoted from pinlawyer:

Thinking about selling off all my classic Sterns.

When will you be posting ads?
Looking forward to seeing pics should you move forward.

#1381 7 months ago

That galaxy was beautiful. The gloss on the cab was a really nice touch I wouldn't have thought of. Was it spraymax?

#1382 7 months ago

I know it'll be out of my budget but looking forward to seeing the Esquire's Ali.

#1383 7 months ago
Quoted from Chalkey:

That galaxy was beautiful. The gloss on the cab was a really nice touch I wouldn't have thought of. Was it spraymax?

Automotive clearcoat

#1384 7 months ago

Did these games come with coin boxes? I've had 4 and none came with one. If they did have them will somebody snap a photo for me?

#1385 7 months ago
Quoted from rollitover:

When will you be posting ads?
Looking forward to seeing pics should you move forward.

It's on another thread.

#1386 7 months ago
Quoted from Chalkey:

Did these games come with coin boxes? I've had 4 and none came with one. If they did have them will somebody snap a photo for me?

My Dracula has an original coin box. Next time I am at the location where it is I will snap a pic.

#1387 7 months ago

Hey Star Gazer owners - I hate to admit but I will likely overpay for your mint Star Gazer.

Why? I'm an OCD condition freak and will pay too much for minty restorations.

So if you have know of a high end Star Gazer restoration that looks and plays like mint, I'm the guy to pay too much for it.

Please hit me up if you're interested.

Thanks!

Adam

12
#1388 7 months ago

I have never driven so far, so fast, so nervously. Add another to the classic Stern line up.

This guy bought this thirty years ago and has never opened it. Absolutely shocked to report the original battery was in tact and STILL WORKING.

FB_IMG_1554126485276 (resized).jpg20190331_221933 (resized).jpg
#1389 7 months ago

Looking for a stern widebody lock down bar.

The one that came with my big game is destroyed.

#1390 7 months ago
Quoted from statictrance:

I have never driven so far, so fast, so nervously. Add another to the classic Stern line up.
This guy bought this thirty years ago and has never opened it. Absolutely shocked to report the original battery was in tact and STILL WORKING.

Wow congrats!! Got the wife her Stingray, now I just need to get her a Seawitch and a Fathom to get her off my back =)

#1391 7 months ago

You know what we need? The price to pick up on these early Sterns - Magic, Nugent, Wild Fyre.

Got a Wild Fyre I need to move.

#1392 7 months ago
Quoted from statictrance:

I have never driven so far, so fast, so nervously. Add another to the classic Stern line up.
This guy bought this thirty years ago and has never opened it. Absolutely shocked to report the original battery was in tact and STILL WORKING.
[quoted image][quoted image]

Gorgeous. Congrats. Would love to see some pics once you get her all set up.

#1393 7 months ago
Quoted from Methos:

You know what we need? The price to pick up on these early Sterns - Magic, Nugent, Wild Fyre.
Got a Wild Fyre I need to move.

Nugent commands a higher price than the others you mentioned, probably 1.5-2k. the other to probably 1200 fully shopped and working

#1394 7 months ago

Here is a video of me cleaning my electronimo cab last summer.

#1395 7 months ago

Working on a Lightning for somebody. Think I'm going to reccomend a new rectifier board...

IMG_20190402_162451 (resized).jpg
#1396 7 months ago

Jeez that belongs in the worst repairs thread. Woof.

#1397 7 months ago
Quoted from Ronnie1114:

Working on a Lightning for somebody. Think I'm going to reccomend a new rectifier board...
[quoted image]

I think you just need more wire. I can lend you some if you want.

IMG_5849 (resized).JPG
#1398 7 months ago
Quoted from dothedoo:

I think you just need more wire. I can lend you some if you want.[quoted image]

Ok mine looks tame now. What in the hell is all the wiring for?

#1399 7 months ago

I need some help. When I turned on my Nine Ball tonight, started to see smoke from the drop targets. Turned the game off, and raised the PF. The smoke is coming from the large bank target, but I can't see anything. The smoke was somewhat light, but the smell was heavy. I didn't have time to pull it apart, but is the only thing it could be is a coil locking on inside it?

#1400 7 months ago
Quoted from Methos:

I need some help. When I turned on my Nine Ball tonight, started to see smoke from the drop targets. Turned the game off, and raised the PF. The smoke is coming from the large bank target, but I can't see anything. The smoke was somewhat light, but the smell was heavy. I didn't have time to pull it apart, but is the only thing it could be is a coil locking on inside it?

Manually see it the plunger in the coil still moves freely...... or just sell it to me.

Promoted items from the Pinside Marketplace
Wanted
From: $ 40.00
Cabinet - Other
Rock Custom Pinball
From: $ 13.00
Electronics
Third Coast Pinball
$ 5.00
Playfield - Decals
Doc's Pinball Shop
There are 2441 posts in this topic. You are on page 28 of 49.

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