I’m finally getting around to posting my first restoration thread. I’ve done a number of restorations/shop outs that I haven’t posted about but I figured for this Spirit restoration it would be a good time to document it up on pinside. I actually purchased this machine over a year ago, and have been working on and off since then with some other projects finished in between starting Spirit and now.
I’m edging close to completion so it’s probably a bit more interesting for people now than months of time between updates!
Big thanks to the likes of Vid, Steve (blownfuse) and all the other contributors on here sharing their wealth of knowledge to the community and documenting restoration processes – definitely a lot of wise advice I’ve heeded.
So first up, the machine itself. Originally a European export, somehow found its way to Zimbabwe and then to Australia and my basement! From what I understand it was on route once upon a time but had been in storage with a hundred+ other machines for years as new games replaced them on route. The condition was pretty good except for the cabinet and the standard dust and crud you’d expect from a machine that old, stored for years. Backglass was really nice and it had been cleaned and sealed by the importer so nothing to do there, playfield was in good shape, some minor wear for its vintage but thankfully 90% of the wear was in the black areas, boards and wiring looked good but the cabinet was not it great shape. Lots of dings and scrapes and not surprisingly security was an issue in Zimbabwe so it had some pretty impressive lock bars installed across the coin door and across the base of the cabinet.
First step was just some general cleaning so I knew what I was working with and could plan out the process a bit. I started with the vacuuming then outside with the mask on and air compressor ready to blow out all the crap that was in there. God knows what the dust that came out of the cabinet was comprised of and I don’t think I want to know!
Normally I’d install a new power cord and get the game at least 90% working before I start the teardown process but my plan all along has been to put a new board set in so I knew if some issues were there I could waste a lot of time pointlessly that won’t be a problem when new boards go in. I had restored a couple of machines that came from this shipping container (same operator) in worse condition and I had only encountered very minor issues and visually everything seemed pretty standard. So off I went.
I’ll keep adding posts until I’m up to current day – going through;
• Stripping the playfield.
• Mylar removal
• Clean and touch up work
• Empty the cabinet.
• Cabinet stencils
• Cabinet repairs
• Back box
• Transformer/Cabinet Mounting boards
• Repopulating the upper pf
• Starting to repopulate the main
• Taking the coin door apart