(Topic ID: 281285)

Removing & Installing Bell Posts on New Plastics - Vid's Guide

By vid1900

3 years ago


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  • 26 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by ourdave76
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    There are 65 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
    32
    #1 3 years ago

    Removing & Installing Bell Posts on New Plastics without any special tools.

    I've received 2 emails on this subject in the last month, so I guess it's time to go over the procedure again.

    -

    #2 3 years ago

    So you get your new set of playfield plastics and suddenly you realize that there are a bunch of Bell Posts cinched into the original plastics.

    You search the net, only to find that they don't make those posts anymore - so you need to reuse them.

    Searching for information, you see that some people drill them out, some heat them with a cigarette lighter, and some just clip them from the old plastics with wire cutters.

    IMG_20201108_140853 (resized).jpgIMG_20201108_140853 (resized).jpg
    #3 3 years ago

    The best way to remove them is to heat them with a soldering iron.

    If you drill them out, they won't stay stuck to the new plastics. So every time you remove the plastics to replace a bulb, the posts roll everywhere.

    -

    Stick the tip of the soldering iron in the cinched part of the bell and gently twist.

    The moment the bell starts to rotate, push it through the plastic.

    Easy peasy, and the original plastic is still intact for emergency use should you break the new one sometime in the future.

    The original plastics are made of butyrate, so they smell like vomit when heated.
    IMG_20201108_143341 (resized).jpgIMG_20201108_143341 (resized).jpg

    #4 3 years ago

    The next steps require a set of Transfer Punches ($7 at Harbor Freight or Canadian Tire with coupon)

    Every pinhead should have a set, you will find uses for them daily.

    https://www.harborfreight.com/28-piece-transfer-punch-set-3577.html

    03577_I_1 (resized).jpg03577_I_1 (resized).jpg

    -
    -

    Find the punch that snugly fits through the cinched hole on the Bell Post

    IMG_20201108_142134 (resized).jpgIMG_20201108_142134 (resized).jpg

    #5 3 years ago

    Next, pull out your set of terminal crimpers ($3 at HF).

    https://www.harborfreight.com/8-in-four-way-wire-crimperstripper-tool-63307.html

    63307_I (resized).jpg63307_I (resized).jpg

    Use the crimpers to un-cinch the top of the Bell Post.

    Don't completely un-cinch it.

    Just SLIGHTLY straighten it, by rotating the post between the jaws.

    The Transfer Punch is your backing that keeps the post from crushing or deforming unevenly.

    Test your work, you want the post to snugly fit in the new plastics.

    IMG_20201108_142239 (resized).jpgIMG_20201108_142239 (resized).jpg

    The best part about these crimpers is they cut 6-32 and 8-32 playfield screw bolts WITHOUT ruining the threads.

    Note the threaded holes along the pivot joint.

    #6 3 years ago

    It takes very little straightening for the flange to fit into the new plastic's holes.

    You want it snug, don't overdo it.

    IMG_20201108_141857 (resized).jpgIMG_20201108_141857 (resized).jpg
    #7 3 years ago

    Here you can see that the Post fits the new Plastic's holes pretty well, but we will re-cinch it so it never falls out during service.

    IMG_20201108_142450 (resized).jpgIMG_20201108_142450 (resized).jpg
    #8 3 years ago

    Many times, the old posts are dull or even corroded.

    You can run a 6-32 post machine screw through them followed by a 6-32 nut.

    Chuck the assembly into your drill and run it in reverse gear (obviously if you run it forward, the nut will wind off)

    Put some Novus2 or Autosol on a cloth rag and you quickly have a mirror finish.

    IMG_20201108_153231 (resized).jpgIMG_20201108_153231 (resized).jpg

    IMG_20201108_153338 (resized).jpgIMG_20201108_153338 (resized).jpg

    If the corrosion is so bad that you can't get it polished out, then use that post near the back of the playfield, away from view.

    #9 3 years ago

    The next step is **for keeps** so be careful.

    The clear plastics have a top and bottom.

    If you assemble them upsidedown, you are going to feel like an idiot.

    Normally, the white protective paper is the bottom, the clear protective film is the top - BUT check against the original.

    You have to peel the white paper off before re-cinching, as you won't be able to get it from between the Post and the Plastic later.

    On the back of most Vise, there is a little flat area called the Anvil.

    Put the Bell on the Anvil and just SLIGHTLY expand the cinch with any conical punch. You can use a Nail Set, a real Conical Punch from one of those $5 sets that come in a roll, or even a well worn #2 screwdriver.

    If it's pretty snug, then just deform the metal by **rolling** the punch around at a 30 degree angle

    If it's not too snug, then gently tap with a small hammer.

    Don't crack the plastic by over-expanding the Cinch!
    IMG_20201108_143921 (resized).jpgIMG_20201108_143921 (resized).jpg

    You can see that I left the clear plastic film in place to protect from scratches.

    #10 3 years ago

    Using this method, the post look like they were factory installed.
    IMG_20201108_144512 (resized).jpgIMG_20201108_144512 (resized).jpg

    #11 3 years ago

    Even these thin plastics are undamaged by the gentle re-cinching.

    I'll peel the clear film off upon installation.

    IMG_20201108_15564300 (resized).jpgIMG_20201108_15564300 (resized).jpg
    #12 3 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Even these thin plastics are undamaged by the gentle re-cinching.
    I'll peel the clear film off upon installation.[quoted image]

    Vector! Excellent.

    #13 3 years ago

    Helpful advice as always.
    Good to see you back vid1900

    #14 3 years ago

    Wow,
    Made my day to see you back & add a new chapter in the Vid's Guides

    #15 3 years ago

    Thank you for sharing your wisdom Vid, it is good to have you back.
    So many things have been going great lately.... gives a guy hope!

    #16 3 years ago

    As always, GREAT guide!

    #17 3 years ago

    Glad to see you back Vid, we have missed you

    #18 3 years ago

    Excellent, a new favorite topic.
    Thank you again Vid!!

    #19 3 years ago

    2020 finally gave us something GOOD... a new guide from the Master!

    Thanks, Vid! It's great to see you back - you've been missed!

    #20 3 years ago

    Thanks @vid1900, the question of removing these bell posts pops up often in the various Bally club threads.

    Quoted from vid1900:

    Find the punch that snugly fits through the cinched hole on the Bell Post

    For those that don't have punch bits on hand, use the back end of a snugly fitting drill bit.

    #21 3 years ago

    Glad to see you back sir!!

    #22 3 years ago

    vid1900 Thanks for sharing another great article. Pinsider NicoVolta did manufacture some new stainless steel bells.

    #23 3 years ago
    Quoted from bluespin:

    vid1900 Thanks for sharing another great article. Pinsider nicovolta did manufacture some new stainless steel bells.

    I remember seeing those in the past, but I could not find anything that he was still making them.

    Gene used to sell brand new real ones at the shows for .30 cents each, so hopefully somebody acquired those dies from his stash.

    #24 3 years ago

    Thanks for posting this.

    You have been greatly missed here.

    #25 3 years ago

    Thanks Vid!! Glad you are still kicking it! Good to hear from you!

    1 month later
    #26 3 years ago
    Quoted from bluespin:

    vid1900 Thanks for sharing another great article. Pinsider nicovolta did manufacture some new stainless steel bells.

    Quoted from vid1900:

    I remember seeing those in the past, but I could not find anything that he was still making them.
    Gene used to sell brand new real ones at the shows for .30 cents each, so hopefully somebody acquired those dies from his stash.

    Proof that Vid never left us. He has been watching from the Silverball Control Bunker in the center of the earth to verify if we have been putting his previous advice to good use and not asking repetitive questions or misleading others in the process. Did we pass?

    Thanks for the shout-out, Bluski. Yep, I still have some repros left. They aren't clinchable using Vid's method above. Rather, they sit flush under the plastics at the same height, held by simple tension.

    3 weeks later
    #27 3 years ago

    well I gotta say BRAVO! as I must do this exact thing here pretty darn soon. I am going to read and reread ov er and over so I can recite the steps so HOPEFULLY this can be done without messing up. I must add, I have a tendency to mess up in places where I know better.
    a picture of moi at Daytona. I attached because, well because I can I guess.

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    5 months later
    #28 2 years ago

    I've got to say a hearty BRAVO to vid1900 as well! Somehow I missed this topic, only finding it when I was looking for info on how to flatten plastics. And since the worst of the plastics both had these posts, I was stumped as to how to remove them. I read through this procedure, and was terrified, since I don't have new plastics and did not want to chance ruining the old ones. Long story short, the process was flawless, the plastics undamaged, and are now basking in the sun between glass! Next step will be to polish the posts as described here, and re-install.

    A bit off-topic for here, perhaps, but.. What's the best way to polish the top surfaces of the plastics? A couple of them look to be scuffed a bit, and I don't want to use anything that will harm them. Can they be waxed or something?

    Thanks to all!

    #29 2 years ago
    Quoted from PinballBillinFL:

    A bit off-topic for here, perhaps, but.. What's the best way to polish the top surfaces of the plastics? A couple of them look to be scuffed a bit, and I don't want to use anything that will harm them. Can they be waxed or something?
    Thanks to all!

    Try novus 2.

    #30 2 years ago

    Yep, novus2 is perfect for the unpainted side of the plastics

    #31 2 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Yep, novus2 is perfect for the unpainted side of the plastics

    Indeed it does! I cautiously tried it on a distant corner just to be sure, and it worked like a champ! Thanks bluespin and @vid1900!

    1 week later
    #32 2 years ago

    Thanks @vid1900.

    Just started swapping plastics on a cheetah. This is just what I needed to migrate those bell posts.

    #33 2 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Yep, novus2 is perfect for the unpainted side of the plastics

    Thanks for pointing this out, otherwise he would have wiped away artwork.

    7 months later
    #34 2 years ago

    vid1900 GREAT advice on this topic! Any suggestions what I might do with the bell spacers on my recently acquired, restored EBD? A teardown for a playfield wax revealed none of them have the flanges which attach them to the new plastics. They are under enormous plastics and a NIIIIIGHTMARE to reassemble when only a post screw holds them in place (and even worse with that fresh coat of wax)! I really don't want to contaminate the pristine plastics with glue, but I don't see much of a solution the next time I have to disassemble it. Thanks for any feedback.

    bells1 (resized).jpegbells1 (resized).jpegbells2 (resized).jpegbells2 (resized).jpeg
    #35 2 years ago
    Quoted from Dakine747:

    vid1900 GREAT advice on this topic! Any suggestions what I might do with the bell spacers on my recently acquired, restored EBD? A teardown for a playfield wax revealed none of them have the flanges which attach them to the new plastics. They are under enormous plastics and a NIIIIIGHTMARE to reassemble when only a post screw holds them in place (and even worse with that fresh coat of wax)! I really don't want to contaminate the pristine plastics with glue, but I don't see much of a solution the next time I have to disassemble it. Thanks for any feedback.
    [quoted image][quoted image]

    NicoVolta Made some repro bells. Ask him if he has any left.

    #36 2 years ago

    Always reuse them and never had an issue installing or having them tear up plastics.

    #37 2 years ago
    Quoted from bluespin:

    NicoVolta Made some repro bells. Ask him if he has any left.

    Thanks Blue… between your parts recommendations and relentlessly sharing pinballs for sale across the internet, I’ll never have a life again!

    #38 2 years ago
    Quoted from Dakine747:

    Any suggestions what I might do with the bell spacers on my recently acquired, restored EBD? A teardown for a playfield wax revealed none of them have the flanges which attach them to the new plastics. They are under enormous plastics and a NIIIIIGHTMARE to reassemble when only a post screw holds them in place (and even worse with that fresh coat of wax)! I really don't want to contaminate the pristine plastics with glue, but I don't see much of a solution the next time I have to disassemble it. Thanks for any feedback.

    You can use a hollow brass rivet to cinch the bells to the plastic, although you might have to slightly enlarge the bell hole to accept a #8 rivet, so a #6 screw can fit down the center

    R.533f4fc6d2722bef7c34273b71a0e0c5 (resized).jpgR.533f4fc6d2722bef7c34273b71a0e0c5 (resized).jpg
    #39 2 years ago
    Quoted from NicoVolta:

    Thanks Blue… between your parts recommendations and relentlessly sharing pinballs for sale across the internet, I’ll never have a life again!

    In case you lost the link to the second best forum on Pinside...
    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/post-project-pins-for-sale-here-cl-ebay-pinside-and-others

    Dakine747 If Nicovolta doesn’t have any bells left I may have some in my parts bins.

    #40 2 years ago
    Quoted from bluespin:

    Dakine747 If Nicovolta doesn’t have any bells left I may have some in my parts bins.

    Ordered from Nick earlier today, but thanks!

    #41 2 years ago
    Quoted from Dakine747:

    Ordered from Nick earlier today, but thanks!

    Nick, I received the 31 bell spacers today, but I’m a little dismayed. The spacers they were to replace had small flanges which would allow them to pop into the plastics with the aid of a soldering iron and a whole lot of caution and care. The previous owner (or someone) removed the flanges essentially making it a nightmare to reassemble the upper playfield area on my Eight Ball Deluxe. I assumed (incorrectly, it appears) that the bells I ordered from you had those flanges and would allow for this. That said, your spacers present a couple of logistical concerns. First, these new spacers will make it NO easier to reassemble the area unless they are able to be attached to the plastics. Although I didn’t want to, I could’ve used glue on the old ones, and I don’t want to have to resort to that now. Two, since the top and bottom of these new spacers are the exact same diameter, centering them using a post screw would be all but impossible! For those reasons, they’re essentially useless to me.

    What do you suggest I do now??

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    #42 2 years ago
    Quoted from Dakine747:

    since the top and bottom of these new spacers are the exact same diameter, centering them using a post screw would be all but impossible! For those reasons, they’re essentially useless to me.

    Quoted from Dakine747:

    What do you suggest I do now??

    Are you sure you're not over thinking this a bit? The operation cannot be this dramatic. You're basically moving the bells around in place till you can feed a screw through them

    #43 2 years ago
    Quoted from Dakine747:

    Nick, I received the 31 bell spacers today, but I’m a little dismayed. The spacers they were to replace had small flanges which would allow them to pop into the plastics with the aid of a soldering iron and a whole lot of caution and care. The previous owner (or someone) removed the flanges essentially making it a nightmare to reassemble the upper playfield area on my Eight Ball Deluxe. I assumed (incorrectly, it appears) that the bells I ordered from you had those flanges and would allow for this. That said, your spacers present a couple of logistical concerns. First, these new spacers will make it NO easier to reassemble the area unless they are able to be attached to the plastics. Although I didn’t want to, I could’ve used glue on the old ones, and I don’t want to have to resort to that now. Two, since the top and bottom of these new spacers are the exact same diameter, centering them using a post screw would be all but impossible! For those reasons, they’re essentially useless to me.
    What do you suggest I do now??
    [quoted image][quoted image]

    Pardon. I did not send photos beforehand, so I understand they may not have been what you were expecting. If you'd like to return them for a refund that would be fine.

    However, I would first suggest giving them a try, as I have outfitted all of my personal games this way and many others have successfully used them too. The new design also adds a decorative touch with the double-sided flange at both ends, which the originals lack.

    The replacement posts are pressure fit. I have not found drifting to be an issue and would not recommend using glue or anything adhesive. But as mentioned, feel free to return them if you would prefer... thank you.

    #44 2 years ago
    Quoted from TheLaw:

    Are you sure you're not over thinking this a bit? The operation cannot be this dramatic. You're basically moving the bells around in place till you can feed a screw through them

    Yes…..I’m sure. Ever tried to exactly position not one, but TWO levels of loose spacers on a freshly waxed playfield, under this enormous piece of plastic, as well the plastic ball guides underneath it??? There’s 18 of ‘em. Give ‘er a try, and THEN come back and ask me that. LOL
    867EEA77-E716-4708-B6F7-8B4B56D432EA (resized).jpeg867EEA77-E716-4708-B6F7-8B4B56D432EA (resized).jpeg

    #45 2 years ago
    Quoted from NicoVolta:

    Pardon. I did not send photos beforehand, so I understand they may not have been what you were expecting. If you'd like to return them for a refund that would be fine.

    I think returning them is what I’ll do — thank you. Any other game, where the spacers are easily reached, I’d probably use them – under the outlane guides for example. There they wouldn’t be an issue. I will not be disassembling the upper parts of EBD again until absolutely necessary. Hopefully, I can source the original style elsewhere. Thanks again.

    89C15DB3-A9B8-45B2-B453-C4224FFDB090 (resized).jpeg89C15DB3-A9B8-45B2-B453-C4224FFDB090 (resized).jpeg
    #46 2 years ago
    Quoted from Dakine747:

    Give ‘er a try, and THEN come back and ask me that. LOL

    FFS...I forgot that plastic goes over the left orbit...ouch!
    I think I could do it with 2 beers and a long
    Metal pusher/retractable magnet. I could also get so frustrates i smash it a into 100 pieces so....tough call

    #47 2 years ago

    Why not try a small dab of silicone to hold the spacers?

    #48 2 years ago

    Yikes, replace that rubber.7d631f70cfa3529e76f61f7e87776a2273526151_LI (resized).jpg7d631f70cfa3529e76f61f7e87776a2273526151_LI (resized).jpg

    #49 2 years ago
    Quoted from Ballypin:

    Yikes, replace that rubber.[quoted image]

    Sadly, a lot of rubber rings made today are crap.

    #50 2 years ago
    Quoted from vec-tor:

    Why not try a small dab of silicone to hold the spacers?

    I'd find a washer that will just fit inside the top of the bells and hot glue/fasten it to the bell.

    That'll keep them centered on the screw.

    There are 65 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.

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