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(Topic ID: 276548)

STNG keeps cycling a ball.


By Push600

50 days ago



Topic Stats

  • 55 posts
  • 13 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 17 days ago by Push600
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

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There are 55 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
#1 50 days ago

My STNG keeps cycling a ball. It loads all of them, then the last ball empties into the left cannon, shoots up-to the lock And cycles again. Has anyone experienced this? Any ideas? Haven’t found a bad opto. Opto board is good.

#2 50 days ago

Sounds like a staging problem. Remove the glass and then REMOVE all of the balls from the machine, make sure you have 6; with the coin door open go into switch edge test, then drop 1 ball into each of the three VUKs and make sure they all reported in switch edge. Put the remaining 3 in the trough, again make sure they are all reporting correctly. Your switch edge test should show switched 36, 37, 41, 64, 65, and 66 OPEN; if not fix it so it does.

If the matrix looks correct, exit test and close the door; you should be able to start a game without it trying to stage balls.

#3 49 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Guy:

Sounds like a staging problem. Remove the glass and then REMOVE all of the balls from the machine, make sure you have 6; with the coin door open go into switch edge test, then drop 1 ball into each of the three VUKs and make sure they all reported in switch edge. Put the remaining 3 in the trough, again make sure they are all reporting correctly. Your switch edge test should show switched 36, 37, 41, 64, 65, and 66 OPEN; if not fix it so it does.
If the matrix looks correct, exit test and close the door; you should be able to start a game without it trying to stage balls.

Thank you for the info.
The trough is correct. Switch is 6665 and 64 activate. When I go into three of the upper Falls, the rank the neutral zone and the start mission, switch 36 is activated, then switch 32, then no switch. The balls are automatically sent to the left cannon trough because the diverter under the playfield is set to that trough when it’s in the switch test. It can only read two balls.
So I believe switch 37 and 41 you’re talking about our the trough above that one.
So I believe switch 37 and 41 you’re talking about our the trough above that one.
I reset the game and it still does the same thing.

#4 49 days ago

More information. When a ball is shot into the start mission hole, during multi ball, it does not find it. That leads me to believe it is not being diverted correctly underneath. The Opto that it first passes through is working.

#5 49 days ago

One of your diverter coils isnt firing. The transistor and or predrive transistor in the extra drive board burnt up, most likely because your tie back back wire broke off. Search the group. Very common issue, and tons of info on it.

#6 49 days ago
Quoted from dsuperbee:

One of your diverter coils isnt firing. The transistor and or predrive transistor in the extra drive board burnt up, most likely because your tie back back wire broke off. Search the group. Very common issue, and tons of info on it.

So it’ll fire in test, but not in play mode? Does that sound correct?

#7 49 days ago
Quoted from dsuperbee:

One of your diverter coils isnt firing. The transistor and or predrive transistor in the extra drive board burnt up, most likely because your tie back back wire broke off. Search the group. Very common issue, and tons of info on it.

Searched. I suck. Does anyone have a link?

#9 49 days ago
Quoted from Push600:

So it’ll fire in test, but not in play mode? Does that sound correct?

It won't fire at all. Check the latest in that was posted. Sorry I couldn't respond faster. 1st day of school from home. Juggling a 5 year old on zoom, his 3 year old brother and this

#10 49 days ago
Quoted from dsuperbee:

It won't fire at all. Check the latest in that was posted. Sorry I couldn't respond faster. 1st day of school from home. Juggling a 5 year old on zoom, his 3 year old brother and this

LOL. No apology needed. Any help is awesome.

#11 49 days ago
Quoted from dsuperbee:

It won't fire at all. Check the latest in that was posted. Sorry I couldn't respond faster. 1st day of school from home. Juggling a 5 year old on zoom, his 3 year old brother and this

All coils fire in test mode. UGH!

#12 49 days ago

I’m missing something. I’m sure it’s something simple that Im missing.

#13 49 days ago
Quoted from Push600:

All coils fire in test mode. UGH!

If they all fire then its a switch, or the diverter arm needs adjustment.

Raise playfield, and do coil test. You will see if the arm needs work.

#14 49 days ago
Quoted from dsuperbee:

If they all fire then its a switch, or the diverter arm needs adjustment.
Raise playfield, and do coil test. You will see if the arm needs work.

Have done that already. I’m going to run through everything again. I know I’m missing something.

#15 49 days ago

So if you take all the balls out of the game, drop one down each vuk output, put three in the trough then turn on the game what does it do?

#16 49 days ago
Quoted from bobukcat:

So if you take all the balls out of the game, drop one down each vuk output, put three in the trough then turn on the game what does it do?

It sends two bowls from the subway to the in lane on the left side. Then it starts cycling one ball again.

#17 49 days ago

Two balls

#18 49 days ago

Definitely check the tie back wire. I can't stress how important this is for the 8 AUX driver board which powers the diverter coils and other things like flashers and the upper drop target. Plus I recommend doing the tie back wire mod to ensure you don't have a problem. If the diverter coils don't fire (likely due to a failed transistor on the 8 AUX board) the game will continue to cycle the balls and never set up correctly due to the non-firing diverter coil. I just got done replacing my 8 AUX driver board and performed the tie back wire mode. When the broken board was installed and the diverter coils were not firing I had the same problem. also be sure the diverter arms are moving freely. The grease in them can dry up and make them stiff or even stuck. I had to rebuild one myself because my newly acquired machine had been in storage for many years. If the coils are firing in the test mode, I would look at the diverter arms next.

#19 49 days ago

I think you have a bad opto / solder joint in one of the left lock positions, possibly the second lock. Just a guess but that's where I'd concentrate.

#20 49 days ago

As stated above, definitely check for the tieback wire but also lift the playfield and work all the diverters by hand. Make sure they move freely, and make sure the set screws are tight.

#21 49 days ago

Look for divots in the ball trough as well, a hung up ball will cause the endless cycling.

#22 49 days ago
Quoted from slochar:

Look for divots in the ball trough as well, a hung up ball will cause the endless cycling.

Not if it goes into the mode with all the balls properly staged ahead of time, otherwise yes this is a good point.

#23 49 days ago

All diverters work and coils fire.

#24 49 days ago
Quoted from Push600:

When I go into three of the upper Falls, the rank the neutral zone and the start mission, switch 36 is activated, then switch 32, then no switch. The balls are automatically sent to the left cannon trough because the diverter under the playfield is set to that trough when it’s in the switch test.

I never said to do that.

I said to do this:

Quoted from Pin_Guy:

drop 1 ball into each of the three VUKs and make sure they all reported in switch edge.

VUKs are Vertical Up Kickers; these are the mechanisms the balls come out of on top of the playfield...I wanted you to drop the balls in those

Please visit the STTNG owners forum https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/forum/clubs-members-only ... you can find lots of information on ball staging issue there.

#25 49 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Guy:

I never said to do this.
I said to do this:

VUKs are Vertical Up Kickers; these are the mechanisms the balls come out of on top of the playfield...I wanted you to drop the balls in those

If you REALLY want to fix a STTNG this is the pinsider to listen to, he may even sleep with his head inserted into the open coin door.

#26 49 days ago

awww shucks

#27 49 days ago

I heard somewhere you’re the man.

#28 49 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Guy:

I never said to do that.
I said to do this:

VUKs are Vertical Up Kickers; these are the mechanisms the balls come out of on top of the playfield...I wanted you to drop the balls in those
Please visit the STTNG owners forum https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/forum/clubs-members-only ... you can find lots of information on ball staging issue there.

I had another plan in my head after reading that. LOL.
I’ll drop them in.

#29 49 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Guy:

Sounds like a staging problem. Remove the glass and then REMOVE all of the balls from the machine, make sure you have 6; with the coin door open go into switch edge test, then drop 1 ball into each of the three VUKs and make sure they all reported in switch edge. Put the remaining 3 in the trough, again make sure they are all reporting correctly. Your switch edge test should show switched 36, 37, 41, 64, 65, and 66 OPEN; if not fix it so it does.
If the matrix looks correct, exit test and close the door; you should be able to start a game without it trying to stage balls.

Did this exactly as you said. It released a ball from the VUK into the left in lane and kept recycling.

#30 49 days ago
Quoted from Push600:

Did this exactly as you said. It released a ball from the VUK into the left in lane and kept recycling.

All VUK optics register as well.

#31 48 days ago
Quoted from Push600:

All VUK optics register as well.

And they open and close properly when I ball is placed in them / rolled through them? None of them are stuck closed or open?

#32 48 days ago

What about the trough switches - are they are registering correctly. The logic in the game looks at the # of balls there and regardless of what it sees or doesn't see in the VUKs it tries to load them. For instance, you have the VUKs all loaded fine, but if the game thinks there's more than 3 balls in the trough, it's going to launch and fire one up for staging, causing an additional ball to be removed from a vuk, starting the same cycle all over again.

#33 48 days ago

Raise the playfield and check all of the switches involved with the subway for broken wires, missing arms, and opto function. The game preloads balls in the subway to make the gameplay smoother so you don't have to wait for the ball to roll down from the top. If it is cycling the balls, then it isn't able to get the balls where they are supposed to be and it will keep trying until the end of time. 99% of the time it is a switch issue, the other 1% is a blown transistor for the diverter. It sounds like the diverter will fire in test mode, so it has to be a switch.

#34 48 days ago
Quoted from bobukcat:

And they open and close properly when I ball is placed in them / rolled through them? None of them are stuck closed or open?

Yes. 100%.

#35 48 days ago
Quoted from slochar:

What about the trough switches - are they are registering correctly. The logic in the game looks at the # of balls there and regardless of what it sees or doesn't see in the VUKs it tries to load them. For instance, you have the VUKs all loaded fine, but if the game thinks there's more than 3 balls in the trough, it's going to launch and fire one up for staging, causing an additional ball to be removed from a vuk, starting the same cycle all over again.

I have tested every opto in the game. They all work.

#36 48 days ago

If you wouldn't mind, can you remove all of the balls and post a picture of the switch matrix with all of the balls removed from the game?

#37 48 days ago

My next gen had same issue. Everything would look good in testing. I started wiggling wires in hopes to find something weird. I did, the connection at the trough opto was causing problem. In test mode on switch matrix display if I touched the wiring to trough the ball trough would go in and out of reading switches. I ended up reflowing solder on trough opto board and its been fine ever since. I am not saying this is your problem, but figured I would share. My switches read fine loading balls in test mode. Once I touched the harness and just wiggled it I saw the switch matrix light up on off where balls are indicated. Good luck sir. Its a great machine.

#38 48 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Guy:

If you wouldn't mind, can you remove all of the balls and post a picture of the switch matrix with all of the balls removed from the game?

Yes sir. Not sure why it attached sideways. But here you go.

1AC14AEB-0D3B-4ACA-8BCB-BE4350D665CF (resized).jpeg
#39 48 days ago

Looks right so far.

IMG_20200904_183629369.jpg
#40 48 days ago

Now put the balls in and check it again.

It will stage three balls.

When it loads the first two balls, you will hear the diverters buzz.

The third ball won't buzz.
2020-09-0420.25.022350911809706486921.jpg

#41 48 days ago
Quoted from Loganpinball:

My next gen had same issue. Everything would look good in testing. I started wiggling wires in hopes to find something weird. I did, the connection at the trough opto was causing problem. In test mode on switch matrix display if I touched the wiring to trough the ball trough would go in and out of reading switches. I ended up reflowing solder on trough opto board and its been fine ever since. I am not saying this is your problem, but figured I would share. My switches read fine loading balls in test mode. Once I touched the harness and just wiggled it I saw the switch matrix light up on off where balls are indicated. Good luck sir. Its a great machine.

I just had the same issue with the right trough opto board. If I jiggled the wires it would trigger all the optos, basically just a bad connection at the little connector. I ended up replacing the connector and now its perfect.

#42 48 days ago

If it launches a fourth ball before releasing one from the vuk, then you know it's your trough opto boards.

Do you still have the original trough boards? Those things are crap, best sttng mod you can do is replace the transmitter board.

#43 48 days ago

I’ve currently got the exact same symptoms . On investigation looks like an easy fix for me as found the diverter arm had sheared

17A6B089-0D6D-4D0C-84AF-8E487B435356 (resized).jpegF3EFC29C-897D-4E5A-A58C-42757E6FC1D4 (resized).jpeg
#44 47 days ago
Quoted from drinkduffbeers:

I’ve currently got the exact same symptoms . On investigation looks like an easy fix for me as found the diverter arm had sheared
[quoted image][quoted image]

All diverters are intact.

#45 47 days ago
Quoted from donjagra:

If it launches a fourth ball before releasing one from the vuk, then you know it's your trough opto boards.
Do you still have the original trough boards? Those things are crap, best sttng mod you can do is replace the transmitter board.

That’s what confuses me. All trough Optus read correctly in test.

#46 47 days ago
Quoted from Push600:

That’s what confuses me. All trough Optus read correctly in test.

With a ball or your finger?

What about divots in the trough? Can you feel through the opening for any ridges or burrs? (Be careful could be sharp on the edges).

Is the behavior donjagra described what's happening where the ball is launched first?

Finally do you have six balls and only six balls in the game?

#47 47 days ago
Quoted from Push600:

That’s what confuses me. All trough Optus read correctly in test.

If all the switches were working correctly, it wouldn't keep launching balls. Period.

If you are 100% that there are no problems with the subway diverters, vuk's and their corresponding switches then the problem is in the trough.

The transmitter boards get the crud beat out of them because williams attached it to the coil bracket that loads the ball. Try jiggling and bumping the wires while there are no balls in the trough and see if and of the optos register. Because the components on the board are old and huge, they shake a lot when the ball loads and give a false signal. They would work during test, but not when the game is loading balls.

If you want to salvage the transmitter board, pull it and reflow all the traces for the components and pins. While you are at it make sure all the wires are tight in the molex connector.

Quoted from Push600:

More information. When a ball is shot into the start mission hole, during multi ball, it does not find it.

Is this still happening? If so, then you know what opto isn't working. Fix this first. In case you didn't know, if you look at an opto transmitter with your cell phone camera, you will see it glow if its working. Sometimes the transmitters just get weak.

#48 47 days ago

Opto glow.

IMG_20200905_145249079.jpg
#49 46 days ago

Remind me to never touch the trough on this game. I just spent the morning rebuilding the connectors because the power wire was flakey and each time it flickered it would launch an extra ball into play.

What a pain.

3 weeks later
#50 22 days ago

I have tested every Opto underneath the play field with a ball. Everything works including the trough. I’m thinking it is an MPU or driver board issue?

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