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(Topic ID: 262174)

Stern Stars- problem with switch matrix


By Nick_C

9 months ago



Topic Stats

  • 9 posts
  • 6 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 9 months ago by Nick_C
  • No one calls this topic a favorite

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Linked Games

  • Stars Stern Electronics, 1978

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20200216_091729 (resized).jpg

#1 9 months ago

Fixing this game for someone else who just bought the game, problem I am having is one row of switches is not working. I have checked all switches physically, in switch test, checked physically and electrically the diodes, the wiring is good. I have pulsing on the strobe.

The board was tried in another game and worked flawlessly. I have tried shorting out the strobe and return in this row and nothing.

I have attached a picture of the switch matrix, the problem is on row I7. As a note, I have pulsing on all returns including this one, but if I close the outhole switch, the pulsing is slower or irregular.

20200216_091729 (resized).jpg
#2 9 months ago

Have you repinned connectors?

#3 9 months ago

If you know the board is good, great. But you said you've checked all the wiring... did you just physically check it, or were you able to get a continuity buzz tone from the board up to the switches?

#4 9 months ago

Any disc caps on the switches in question? Are any of the coin door switches stuck shut?

#5 9 months ago

I had a project Stars that I brought back to life recently with switch issues among other things. I had to repin ALL of the .100 connectors to get it to work reliably.

#6 9 months ago
Quoted from the96stang:

Have you repinned connectors?

This is my last resort.

Quoted from vintageclub:

If you know the board is good, great. But you said you've checked all the wiring... did you just physically check it, or were you able to get a continuity buzz tone from the board up to the switches?

I forgot to mention that I checked continuity of the return wire.

Quoted from Xenon75:

Any disc caps on the switches in question? Are any of the coin door switches stuck shut?

The "star" switches should have those disc capacitors yes, one in question is missing but there was another star that was missing it so I thought that it was of little importance. Are they important?

Looks like I may have to repin the connectors, they don't fit very well anyway.

#7 9 months ago

Connectors are almost always hammered on this era/make of game. The caps on the switches are only important to catch quick hits to them (so, relatively important if you want the game to play correctly). They are ancient at this point and they should all be replaced. Replacements are CHEAP. (Like 10ยข) No reason not to do it. Don't forget to do the tilt as well, or at least cut that one off as any shorted cap will cause very strange issues.... with the switch matrix! So maybe do the cap replacement first and you MIGHT be able to avoid the repinning.

Repinning sucks if you don't have a good crimper, you will get carpel tunnel with the Waldron type that need 2 crimps per connector, get a ratcheting type that does both sides of the crimp at the same time.

If you're not good at the repinning aspect (it does have a slight learning curve to get good crimps) maybe leave it - bad crimps are worse than not doing it at all.

#8 9 months ago

Good idea on replacing the caps, I will get these in the next couple of weeks and report back.

I have done quite a bit of repinning on pinballs, entire games, it is time consuming but when it needs it, it is all worth it. I have also done quite a bit on aircraft connectors as well.

Thanks for all the replies, this is always a great place to get great information and tips.

1 week later
#9 9 months ago

Got lucky on this one, reinstalled the missing capacitor...all switches in that row now work!!

Thanks everyone for the help

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