Ok, over 2 weeks since my last post, and I've been workin. Easter weekend plus other family commitments slowed me down. I did a bunch of stuff to it that has made a big difference.
I put in BOTH hole protectors to really cover up this mess:
I cleaned every solenoid (replaced the sleeve and spring) except the flippers, kickers, jets, and diverter. Now my stroke of luck hole is behaving and the rod goes down normally. I get better up and down motion on my Martians although one still sticks in the upright position sometimes.
I replaced every target in the center target bank. They were all in the wrong place or the wrong target entirely. This took some time as I had to plan out how I wanted to fit them all in there. The wiring harness is right on top of (er . . . below) the targets on the right side of the playfield. Ultimately, removing them all and soldering them in the center position before moving them to their correct spot made this pretty easy.
The new center target I bought gets caught on a screw on the ball catcher assembly. It would get stuck and not move anymore or function as a switch. After some troubleshooting, I replaced the problematic screw with a flat screw and also stuck some black backing foam behind the target. It doesn't move as much now, but it doesn't get stuck and is nice and sensitive.
I hacked together a connector for the drop target assembly. I used a two prong male molex connector and mounted the switch using some screws that fit tightly into the switch mounting holes. This means that I don't need the actual switch mounting bracket (that apparently is only available in Australia). Admittedly, this is a hack, but it works and the drop target is pretty far out of the way to the point where I don't think it will cause problems. I may re-solder the connection to the molex connector if I get a PCB board that is the right size.
I need some help understanding how to disassemble the kickers and diverter. What is the best way to remove the locking pins? Also, there is one screw that is under the plastic control panel cover that is going to be very tough to get to. How do you guys remove the plastic cover that goes over the ball trough?