Day Five: Hump Day!!! (8 hours)
The second best feeling when doing a restoration is when you hit the actual playfield swap point. That happened in this 8-hour segment, and it's an awesome feeling. You can wash your hands and know that you'll be dealing with (mostly) clean parts from now on as you start the rebuild.
One thing before I continue, though: No matter how long this restoration takes, you can add another 10-20 hours for all the extra shit that doesn't really count in a restoration. Like researching replacement parts, shopping for them, putting up and taking down white trash spray tents. Three times. Because I'm nucking futs and painted parts of the cabinet and head 8 different times until I was satisfied with it.
Anyway, I didn't count the extra 8 hours I spent painting in this restoration because I have issues and most people don't. But it's behind me now, and the worst part of the restoration is as well. I'm right on schedule, and now the fun begins.
You'd be amazed at how long stupid shit takes, like properly removing frog tape and masking, then having to carefully resand the small areas where the paint leaked underneath. Frog tape, my ass. The stuff is just as useless as the blue 3M tape - and I put two layers on and smooshed the stuff down. Anyway, here's the cabinet after the unmasking, touch-ups, and regluing and nailing of the speaker and power box platforms, both of which were sanded down individually:
And before you give me any shit...yes, I know there's minor orange peeling on the inside of the cabinet. That doesn't bother me. Why? Because it's the inside of the cabinet. My goal is to get this machine better than factory, which it is...and as the title says, this ain't no HEP.
I screened the back of the cabinet and added the feet so I could tip it up and not worry about damage when applying the front decals this week. The backbox warning screen will go on in the next couple of days as well (the paint had to cure a little longer - I like to let it sit for 10 days to 2 weeks before decaling) EDIT--there's some dust on the cabinet...that'll happen when you leave it in a garage!:
Then I turned my attention to the playfield, which I completed stripping in record time, or at least faster than that sloth Skypilot could do it. That slug takes two weeks just to get the caps off the pops. Last off is first one, so right into the basket for the ultrasonic cleaner the wire supports went:
It's amazing how little there really is that goes into an AFM when you see it gutted and lying on a table. Please note the awesome labelling I did on each mech so that I'd know what the f**k it is in the likely event of a senior moment:
Then to the good stuff. And again, you'd be amazed at how long this stuff takes. I installed the Mantis protectors and tee nuts, and the holes for the tee nuts were too small (thanks, Mirco!), so I had to Dremel them all out in order to tap them in. Why did that take so long? BECAUSE THERE'S BETWEEN 40 AND 50 TEE NUTS ON AFM!!! Shoot me now...
Finally, I installed Reese Rails on the topside (thanks, Taylor!) and called it a day:
But even when you're done working for the day, you should always have some machines doing some work for you during the down time:
Next up: Warning screens, decaling, pop bumper rebuilds, flipper rebuilds, and all coils/mechs getting cleaned, polished and rebuilt. That oughta keep me busy for another 8 hours!