(Topic ID: 180188)

RFM lamp issues help


By pacmanretro

2 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 23 posts
  • 4 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 2 years ago by MustangPaul
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders

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#1 2 years ago

Can anyone shed some light on my lamp issue please! It's driving me nuts. There seems to be some voltage bleed over (for lack of a better word) between some lamps...and it doesnt seem to follow even a single row/coloum, but multiple.

Basically, as some lamps turn on/off, part of their power is driving other lamps ad well. So, if the other lamp is nomally off, it glows a little; normally on, it glows brighter than it is supposed to...

for clarification....if you do an individual lamp test, some are ok; while others cause additional lamps (mostly 1 sometimes 2+) to come on dimly (even though they should be off).

I hope my problem is described in a way that makes sense....and that someone can...HELP...

Thank you to all!

#2 2 years ago

Print a copy of the lamp matrix from the manual. Put the game into individual lamp test and step through each lamp. Mark on the sheet you printed, each lamp that activates when they shouldn't.

The way the lamp matrix works, there has to be a column or row correlation with this kind of behavior. Using the printed sheet that you can mark up will allow you to visually see which row or column is affected.

--
Rob Anthony
Pinball Classics
http://LockWhenLit.com
Quality Board Work - In Home Service
borygard at gmail dot com

#3 2 years ago

Thank you for the suggestion...I had started that previously and it seemed all over the place. I am starting a more thorough job of that right now.

If a lamp test causes other ones to come on too, do you think I should mark the lamp that is supposed to light, the extra lamp(s) that light, or both??

I would think both, but not sure...

Thanks

#4 2 years ago
Quoted from pacmanretro:

Thank you for the suggestion...I had started that previously and it seemed all over the place. I am starting a more thorough job of that right now.
If a lamp test causes other ones to come on too, do you think I should mark the lamp that is supposed to light, the extra lamp(s) that light, or both??
I would think both, but not sure...
Thanks

Mark them differently so you can tell the difference. Different colored markers are good to use.

--
Rob Anthony
Pinball Classics
http://LockWhenLit.com
Quality Board Work - In Home Service
borygard at gmail dot com

#5 2 years ago

Shoot, so I went ahead and just got done marking them all, then saw your response...

I will say that almost every one I marked was affected by another one....also noticed that just because a wrong (extra) lamp came on dim, that didn't necessarily mean that the extra lamp turned on any other ones when it was properly lit... like - X lit Y dimly, but Y did not necessarily lite X at all.

If you think trying to color code what turned on what would help, I'll go for it, but that is going to be a TON of confusing work that may or may not be usefull :/

Take a look at my little "bingo card" pic, please, and note that almost every matrix A lamp is screwy (maybe even all, and I just missed a couple) and absolutely NO matrix B is bad...

There has to be some other main part of matrix A circuit screwy...no?????

Im at a loss...

Anybody????
Thanks

KIMG0010 (resized).jpg

#6 2 years ago

are they LEDs or incandescents?

#7 2 years ago

Are any of the other diagnostics affected? Do the coils all engage properly in test? Do all switches respond as they should?

You'll save yourself and others a heck of a lot of time and headache, packing up the driver board and sending it out for repair.

--
Rob Anthony
Pinball Classics
http://LockWhenLit.com
Quality Board Work - In Home Service
borygard at gmail dot com

#8 2 years ago
Quoted from QuietEarp:

are they LEDs or incandescents?

I have set it all back up to original incandescent.

#9 2 years ago
Quoted from Borygard:

Are any of the other diagnostics affected? Do the coils all engage properly in test? Do all switches respond as they should?
You'll save yourself and others a heck of a lot of time and headache, packing up the driver board and sending it out for repair.
--
Rob Anthony
Pinball Classics
http://LockWhenLit.com
Quality Board Work - In Home Service
borygard at gmail dot com

All diagnostics are fine....machine has no errors.

Thank you anyway.

Hopefully some other techs can offer some more suggestions.

Thank you.

#10 2 years ago

I would like to ask, and don't get me wrong, I do appreciate any advise:

How would I be saving myself and "others" headache and time by asking for help/suggestions and posting my results???

Isn't part of this group supposed to be a good placr to go to find other people with same problem? Is it because you repair boards?

Just wondering..not trying to be rude.

#11 2 years ago

You won't follow the troubleshooting suggestions given. Your comments show that you're clearly in over your head. This issue will likely require some board work, and I can't see that ending well from what I've seen so far.

Also not trying to be rude, just one guy's opinion. I hope you get it resolved easily.

--
Rob Anthony
Pinball Classics
http://LockWhenLit.com
Quality Board Work - In Home Service
borygard at gmail dot com

#12 2 years ago

I thought I was following suggestions. I asked if you thought it was still worth going over each one again after showing my results. Thank you though.

Not in over head, just looking to see what others may have experienced.

I have close to 20 years in industrial manufacturing as an electronic tech and spent several working at a board house as the diagnostic troubleshoot/repair tech.

I am not 100 percent that it is a board logic issue, but will gladly post if/when I find the cause.

Thanks.

#13 2 years ago

Well it definitely sounds like you've got more than enough experience to tackle anything that needs to be done. My apologies for rushing to judgment.

Most boards I get in these days have been destroyed by hands that had no businesses being near them. So my reaction is hyper sensitive. Again, my apologies.

Confirm you're dealing with a board issue by swaping J106/J107 with J108/J109 on the driver board. One connector is 16 pin and one is 18 pin, so you'll need to match pin one to pin one. Pins 9 and 18 will hang over the header on the smaller of the two.

What you're doing with this is swapping Lamp Matrx A with Lamp Matrix B. So if the issue remains exactly the same on the playfield it's not a board issue. If the other Matrix lamps are now affected, then it's a board issue.

--
Rob Anthony
Pinball Classics
http://LockWhenLit.com
Quality Board Work - In Home Service
borygard at gmail dot com

#14 2 years ago

Awesome suggestion! Thank you very much! I also was wondering if there is some floating logic from a bad ground or something and to see what all is shared on matrix A, as it just seems so odd...

Just sat down to go over schematics a bit more.

I will try your suggestion tomorrow and be sure to post results. I'll try to get some time to scope a couple points if I see anything worth checking out tonight.

Thank you!

#15 2 years ago

As I stare at the schematic, it was buggin me too much, so I went back to the machine.

There is no J107 being used.
so I moved P109 to J107 and left J109 empty.

Then swapped 106 and 108 (keeping pin 1 correct of course).

I used single lamp test mode again. Obviously test mode is not right because activating a "Matrix A" really turns on a "Matrix B" now....not important...

What was significant was that the matrix A lamps (ones that really are matrix a) are still screwy.

So, originally matrix A lights were weird; now still matrix A lights are bad (just have to tell test to fire matrix b lights to activate them)...

Am I correct in thinking it followed the same lights from either section of drivers? Therefore less likely to be a board issue???

Or am I thinking backwards after a long day?

#16 2 years ago

If I AM thinking correctly, and it is not a board issue, now I'm back to wondering what is the culprit....

I don't have a lot of experience with working on this machine type (Pin2K)...is there a possibility of a faulty lamp socket(s) or maybe socket diode(s) that could cause this?

That is the only other thing I can think of.

It was doing this before I shopped it, and I have replaced every lamp and flasher (using correct lamp numbers).

#17 2 years ago
Quoted from pacmanretro:

...
Am I correct in thinking it followed the same lights from either section of drivers? Therefore less likely to be a board issue???...

It's not less likely to be a board issue, it CAN'T be a board issue.

You've got a wiring or playfield issue. Anything from the connector out of the board to the lamps. A shorted socket(s), bad diode, shorted wire, most anything, except a board issue. Very difficult to find, but should be very easy to fix once you locate the cause.

--
Rob Anthony
Pinball Classics
http://LockWhenLit.com
Quality Board Work - In Home Service
borygard at gmail dot com

#18 2 years ago
Quoted from Borygard:

It's not less likely to be a board issue, it CAN'T be a board issue.
You've got a wiring or playfield issue. Anything from the connector out of the board to the lamps. A shorted socket(s), bad diode, shorted wire, most anything, except a board issue. Very difficult to find, but should be very easy to fix once you locate the cause.
--
Rob Anthony
Pinball Classics
http://LockWhenLit.com
Quality Board Work - In Home Service
borygard at gmail dot com

Only slight thing in my head last night was that I didnt go back to wiring diagrams/schematic again to see why they don't use J107. I wasn't sure if they just didn't use that many, or if there were some shared for both A and B matrix off J109.....but your right, it should still have changed even if that were the case.

Thanks for the confirmation

I am guessing it is about to turn into a which hunt (spelling on purpose. Lol)...

Probably take a while, but I will certainly post what I find.

Thank you very much for your insite!

#19 2 years ago

So I went through every lamp socket twice...checking that all wires were on correct solder tabs and that all diodes were on correct tabs/correct polarity...nothing wrong.

Next, noticed like 7 sockets that had the top (closest to bulb end) tab bent over hard touching metal mounting bracket. While mounting bracket is not attached to anything else (and only screwed to wood playfield), I was concerned that there was a potential for multiple pieces of metal to be touching somewhere causing a short.....Nothing wrong there either.

Attached, (for clarity) is a photo of one, but I already bent tab off bracket (forgot to take pic first....it was tab with yellow wires.

KIMG0016 (resized).jpg

#20 2 years ago

Next I went through and noticed a few of the lamps that are on dim are always the same so checked those a little closer...I notice my left saucer seemed to be brighter than other bulbs, like even when it was supposed to be on it was a little brighter.

Unplugged bulb, all rest of matrix ok...put bulb back, not ok.

I started following wires and found that the right one has a blue butt splice by connector, both left and right spot lights have a blue butt splice, but this left saucer socket did not....then I realized what they were; the blocking diode for the lamp socket is inside them.

Someone replaced the left saucer lamp socket (mounted on left ramp) with a no diode socket!!!

I cut correct wire, soldered in a diode (correct polarity), and put some shrink tube over it.

Put it all back and..... ALL FIXED!!!!

I'll attach a right pick showing splices, left side showing missing one, and left side after I fixed it. Hard to see shrink tube.

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KIMG0014 (resized).jpg

KIMG0015 (resized).jpg

#21 2 years ago

Borygard, thank you again for the help.

As a clarification to someone else with same problem, note that the diode goes same way as all other 3 tab lamp sockets in machine (brown wire, with diode band toward wire).

No diode certainly explains the slightly brighter bulb...wish I would have noticed the lack of voltage drop wayyy earlier.

Im so happy its figured out, was driving me nuts!

I hope this thread may some day be of help to someone else as well.

Thanks guys!

#22 2 years ago

AWESOME!!!

Great job finding the issue!

--
Rob Anthony
Pinball Classics
http://LockWhenLit.com
Quality Board Work - In Home Service
borygard at gmail dot com

#23 2 years ago
Quoted from pacmanretro:

Next I went through and noticed a few of the lamps that are on dim are always the same so checked those a little closer...I notice my left saucer seemed to be brighter than other bulbs, like even when it was supposed to be on it was a little brighter.
Unplugged bulb, all rest of matrix ok...put bulb back, not ok.
I started following wires and found that the right one has a blue butt splice by connector, both left and right spot lights have a blue butt splice, but this left saucer socket did not....then I realized what they were; the blocking diode for the lamp socket is inside them.
Someone replaced the left saucer lamp socket (mounted on left ramp) with a no diode socket!!!
I cut correct wire, soldered in a diode (correct polarity), and put some shrink tube over it.
Put it all back and..... ALL FIXED!!!!
I'll attach a right pick showing splices, left side showing missing one, and left side after I fixed it. Hard to see shrink tube.

You know I had a problem with the insert lights on my BoP, they looked like crap with the strobing and flickering so I put a OCD board in it to cure the problem. It didn't so I looked further and found that one and I say again ONE socket didn't have a diode on it and that was the problem. Put one on and that OCD board now makes the inserts look beautiful. Funny what a single missing diode will cause. Good detective work.

hey Rob I still have to get my Tempest chassie to you for board repair one of these days.

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