(Topic ID: 311850)

Stern Galaxy Light Resto / Quicksilver Conversion

By KSUWildcatFan

4 months ago


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Topic Stats

  • 29 posts
  • 4 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 81 days ago by KSUWildcatFan
  • Topic is favorited by 4 Pinsiders

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#1 4 months ago

This started as a HIDEOUS $500 galaxy: bad glass, hiiiilariously badly painted cab, so-so playfield, iffy display situation (pinscore 7 digit p1, outgassed p4) that I intended to gut and convert to a Quicksilver. Seemed like a perfect candidate.

Then my friend found a neglected Galaxy in his local operator warehouse. It was supposed to be $600. Cab looked okay, not great. Glass had a bit of flaking but was better than what I had. Displays were there. Mpu and sound board were present, lamp and power missing. No playfield glass, no lock bar. No big deal. The playfield looked to have SOLID upside, under all the dust. Pickup day came and suddenly it was $600 without the backglass or $700 with. No one mentioned it but the displays and boards were removed. Nice. Much back and forth later, I was told to deal with it as is it bring it back and they'd give me a refund plus $25 (lol, what?). I decided I was better off WITH it than without it, so I kept it. My display situation still sucks but I'm hoping I can pick up a few original Stern displays for Galaxy somewhere.

The goal with Galaxy will be to keep it more or less as original as possible (although I do intend to give the 2021 code update a try, looks neat). Not sure yet if the cab will get repainted. Maybe, since it's such a simple design. Unsure on cleaning the playfield or at a minimum filling inserts.

Quicksilver will get all new everything. Alltek boards, Xpin displays, Mirco playfield and plastics, BGResto backglass, etc.

Donor cab for Quicksilver is uuuuuugly.

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#2 4 months ago

The way the warehouse cab looked when I was told about it, for $600.

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#3 4 months ago

The way it was given, at full price +100 (backglass in the truck) after the operator gutted it.

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#4 4 months ago

Transferring my working boards over. Sadly, no boot due to a bad rec board / bad plugs (haven't tried replacing it repinning yet)

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#5 4 months ago

Some minor progress thus far on the new playfield. Using Meguiar's Ultimate Polish and a 2200rpm Dremel Versa.

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#6 4 months ago

Rough day for my tools. My Dremel wasn't wanting to cooperate and died fairly quickly. Still need to buff some more. I pulled off all the hardware I could in order to tumble it...and my tumbler motor froze up. I cleaned the glass up and it's a bit rougher than I thought. Sadly it's probably going to just be a wall-hanger.

Hopefully I can buff the playfield a bit more tomorrow. It's not terribly far from where I want it to be but I don't have a nice even gloss throughout and that's what I really want to get. Looks a lot better than when it was covered in dust, at least.

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#7 4 months ago

Made some solid progress yesterday and today. Yesterday the goal was to get the first cab to boot with the original boards and a new rectifier board. After some serious dinking around (I screwed up the arrangement on the J1 plug -- sheesh) I finally got it to work. Swapping over to the new cab, I had to repin all three rectifier plugs as well as J3 on the SDB and then it booted too. Still having problems getting displays to work in the new cab, where they worked in the old one...probably more repinning ahead. J1 on the MPU didn't get it done.

Today I did some more buffing on the playfield, cleaned (and buffed) the apron, brushed and polished the lift trim, and tested the glass in the game. It looks better than I thought even though it's not perfect. It might do okay.

I cleaned the faceted posts and various wire guides...I think I'm nearly ready to reassemble.

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#8 4 months ago

Waxed the bottom and middle portions and started reassembly. Working on cleaning and flattening plastics now.

Still need to repin display connectors.

Hopefully it'll all be back in one piece and working well this weekend.

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#9 4 months ago

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Not perfect, but passable for now.

#10 4 months ago

Did you cook your plastics in the oven? I have done this in the past and it worked great. I don't have the link to the thread at my finger tips, but I used 2 sheets of tempered glass, set my oven to the lowest setting (170') and cooked for 10 minutes. Then removed, stacked some weight on the glass sandwich and let it all cool.

#11 4 months ago
Quoted from Skidave:

Did you cook your plastics in the oven? I have done this in the past and it worked great. I don't have the link to the thread at my finger tips, but I used 2 sheets of tempered glass, set my oven to the lowest setting (170') and cooked for 10 minutes. Then removed, stacked some weight on the glass sandwich and let it all cool.

Yeah, that's more or less how I approached flattening them in my oven. My big left piece still has a bit of warping to it so I might try again, but I only have two small pieces of glass and that makes it difficult to span large pieces like this. It's probably "good enough" for now. If Galaxy ends up being a keeper (I have the 2021 code setup on the way) I'll likely buy a new backglass and plastics sometime down the road.

#12 4 months ago

Both of my Galaxy troughs had busted tabs so I need to fix one and then polish it up.

I got sick of my weird display issues and after repinning a BUNCH of plugs but getting nowhere I finally just gave up and swapped the backbox harness over from the other cab. Displays good to go again.

Finished waxing and polishing and started a bit more reassembly. Looking good!

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#13 4 months ago

Finished up (for now). Had to pop in a couple of translucent lane guides that don't look great...they'll be swapped with Opaque red very soon.

Backglass swapped, Xpin LED boards installed. Needs a LOT of adjustments but it does play fully.

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#14 4 months ago

I use Nevr Dull too.

#15 4 months ago
Quoted from Skidave:

I use Nevr Dull too.

Nevr Dull is great stuff! I actually just used a Scotch Brite pad on my trough parts this time, I assume some time down the road I'll have to do it again and maybe use Nevr Dull or something else..or clearcoat..because it'll oxidize again. All of these old stern parts do it since they didn't coat them.

#16 4 months ago

Stripped more junk off the ugly cab, sending off for powder. I think I'm going to try Prismatic Super Chrome plus. I think it might look really nice set against the silver QS cab.

https://www.prismaticpowders.com/shop/powder-coating-colors/UMS-10671/super-chrome-plus

I got this ugly, BEAT lock bar with some other stuff. No idea if it can be filled/reshaped/powdercoated but I intend to try. It would be a shame to have to just junk it.

I'm picking up the 2021 code setup for Galaxy tomorrow, along with a NOS spinner and backglass. That should really make Galaxy shine!

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#17 4 months ago

New glass swapped in, albeit with old incandescent bulbs still behind it. I might try swapping LEDs in selectively.

Need to get some vinyl "scores" for the windows on the old one and then frame it for the shop.

Still need to swap in the new spinner and install the new 2021 code, which I now have in hand.

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#18 4 months ago

Finally got a complete set of matching Stern displays from TPF (thanks play_pinball !) and installed new code/spinner. Went ahead and used a 20W amplifier and some bookshelf speakers (because if not now, then when?!) and gave it a test run. Wow!

Still lots of adjusting to do but I'm very impressed.

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#19 4 months ago
Quoted from KSUWildcatFan:

Nevr Dull is great stuff! I actually just used a Scotch Brite pad on my trough parts this time, I assume some time down the road I'll have to do it again and maybe use Nevr Dull or something else..or clearcoat..because it'll oxidize again. All of these old stern parts do it since they didn't coat them.

Bring your sheet metal down here and shine them up with my buffer. Then hit them with some spray can clear. They will stay shiny for a long time.

#20 4 months ago
Quoted from KSUWildcatFan:

Finally got a complete set of matching Stern displays from TPF (thanks play_pinball !) and installed new code/spinner. Went ahead and used a 20W amplifier and some bookshelf speakers (because if not now, then when?!) and gave it a test run. Wow!
Still lots of adjusting to do but I'm very impressed.

[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

You have done a very nice job on cleaning Galaxy up. I like your video. You should think about putting it on you tube. There are no good vides of Galaxy.

#21 4 months ago
Quoted from cottonm4:

You have done a very nice job on cleaning Galaxy up. I like your video. You should think about putting it on you tube. There are no good vides of Galaxy.

I'll make some better ones once I have it a bit more dialed in. This was really just a quick demo of the new code.

This has definitely cleaned up pretty well but it's *not quite* there. Getting close! The new code really does liven up the gameplay quite a bit.

3 weeks later
#22 3 months ago

Picked up a nice 2.1 Boston speaker set for $3 at a garage sale earlier in hopes that it would work out better than the bookshelf speakers and the small amplifier. They sound great, and the subwoofer is a really nice touch.

I'll probably mount the speakers on bottom near the front legs. I'm trying to figure out how I can secure the subwoofer inside the cab, where the speaker originally went. Then of course I need to tap into the transformer so I don't have to use the service port for power, and I can then bundle up/tab wires in place. My goal was to not have to use any sort of external power or have anything UNDER the cab of the game.

I also swapped on the lane guides from my donor playfield to get things a BIT under control with the guides I have (mine are badly broken at the end and the ball was getting STUCK between the plastic spacer and the flipper). It's definitely not perfect and I still have some hop, which is annoying, but it's far better than it was. It's a temporary solution until I can buy new lane guides, cut new (clear) guides of the proper size, or...I don't know. I'm open to pretty much anything at this point.
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#23 3 months ago
Quoted from KSUWildcatFan:

I'm trying to figure out how I can secure the subwoofer inside the cab, where the speaker originally went.

Get 4 angle brackets at the hardware store. Get some epoxy or some JB Weld. Bond the angle brackets to each corner. You may be able to install some short sheet metal screws to the speaker box without hitting anything inside as a further means of keeping the brackets in place. Place the speaker where you want it. Mark the holes where the angle brackets sitting. Drill the holes. Lock the speaker box down with some nuts and bolts ( you will need a third hand).

#24 3 months ago

Have not done any additional work on the speaker situation other than loosely sitting the subwoofer inside, over the original speaker cutout. The satellite speakers are just sitting on the floor for now.

https://www.marcospecialties.com/pinball-parts/13C-114-SS

These were back in stock so I ordered two sets. One will get installed and the other will go to my friend to trace and make templates for future reprinting if the need ever arises.

Man I love this game with the new code.

#25 3 months ago
Quoted from KSUWildcatFan:

Have not done any additional work on the speaker situation other than loosely sitting the subwoofer inside, over the original speaker cutout. The satellite speakers are just sitting on the floor for now.
https://www.marcospecialties.com/pinball-parts/13C-114-SS
These were back in stock so I ordered two sets. One will get installed and the other will go to my friend to trace and make templates for future reprinting if the need ever arises.
Man I love this game with the new code.

Now Galaxies are moving up in price and will no longer be suitable to use as donor pins for the "hotter" classic Stern titles.

https://pinside.com/pinball/market/classifieds/archive?s=1&radius_latitude=37.675&radius_longitude=-97.32&keywords=&ad_machine_key=199&ad_condition=0&machine_type=&ad_machine_manuf=&year_from=&year_to=&radius_distancekm=0&sort_by=ad_end_date&sort_order=DESC#results

#26 3 months ago

I'd say that even at ~$2000 they're probably near the bottom (in terms of price) of classic Stern SB300 games capable of being a donor. I'm lucky that the other one was so ugly (bad glass, hideous cab, "okay" playfield) or else I'd be inclined to keep it a Galaxy. It just needs too much for me to want to do anything other than turn it into a QS. That said, I still haven't bought any actual parts in order to do the conversion. I'm aiming for next year...

#27 3 months ago
Quoted from KSUWildcatFan:

Man I love this game with the new code.

I have to agree, are you running the newest code with the carryover of mission.

Great job on the pin.

#28 3 months ago
Quoted from polishedball:

I have to agree, are you running the newest code with the carryover of mission.
Great job on the pin.

I am! The new code took it from zero to hero as far as I'm concerned!

I still intend to redo the cab at some point and touch up / clearcoat the playfield... but that'll be a ways down the road.

2 weeks later
#29 81 days ago

Forgot to post about the new flipper lane plastics from Marco. Finally, no more disgusting ball hopping. I still need to rebuild the top pop but other than that I'm pretty much done with Galaxy for a bit (still need to mount speakers but it's been low priority). Eventual resto (pf touch up and clear + cab repaint) will be well down the road.

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