Sorcerer (Williams 1985 - System 9)
I'd like some help here with a Sorcerer pinball. First of all, I should let you know
that I work at a small amusement park and one of my many duties is the maintenance
and repair of electronic games, including 20 pinball machines. I've been doing this for 20
Earlier this fall my dentist asked me if I would look at his pinball machine and if I could possibly repair it. It's was a Williams Sorcerer from 1985 which is bit older that the ones I'm used to working on (our oldest machine is a Williams Cyclone from 1988). The problem with the machine was that most of the playfield lights would not activate and the game would not start all of the time.
When I looked at it in his home I noticed that I could get some of the lights to come on by
tapping on the glass on the backbox. I was able to get a game started but when the first
ball drained the game didn't recoginse that the ball was lost and did not dispense another
I took the machine to my shop and wasn't too surprised to discover that connector 1J7 (lamp column) was burnt and cracked so that was the cause of the lights problem. I replaced the connector. Now all the lights worked.
I also found (again no surprise) that the batteries had leaked so I replaced the battery holder and installed new batteries. I also carefully cleaned and checked all circuit board traces and components that had got any of the corrosive fluid on them.
The problem is the game will still not start. I checked the game start (credit) switch and it
is OK (good contact). The wiring from the switch back to the CPU board is OK (good continuity).
The diode on the switch tests OK by using the diode test function on my multimeter.
The switch (SW 3) tests OK in the switch test mode. In the test mode ALL of the switches, lights and solenoids test OK. The memory chip test, activated by pushing the DIAGNOSTIC button on the CPU board, indicates "test passed". That means that Game ROMs 1 & 2 (U18 & U20) are OK and not corrupted.
I did find low voltage when measuring across pins 7 and 14 on any of the 14 pin DIP chips
on the CPU board. I measured 4.85 volts. I took a brand new computer type power supply and connected it to the CPU board (+5V, +12V & -12V). I now was getting a much better 5.15 volts across those chips but this still did not fix the problem!
It all comes down to this: the machine powers up OK and is in "attract mode" with the playfield lights flashing in patterns. The game start button is pressed but the game won't start or do anything (still in attract mode). If the start switch is functional and tests OK in switch test mode, why won't the game start? Is there some condition that I'm not aware of that is needed for the game to start?
I've also looked at http://www.pinrepair.com/sys11/ for info but a quick look did not see anything about my problem, I'm going to have to read it more closely. Any help from here would be most welcome, thanks!