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(Topic ID: 234959)

Twilight Zone Total Restoration


By Mneubey

1 year ago



Topic Stats

  • 98 posts
  • 24 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by Mneubey
  • Topic is favorited by 38 Pinsiders

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There are 98 posts in this topic. You are on page 2 of 2.
#51 1 year ago

Thanks! There's next gen sideart on Ebay or pretty much most of the pinball related sites - also I'm not sure if Retro Refurbs are doing any Williams/Bally stuff anymore. I think there's a guy on Ebay that repros all of the labels for Williams games. I haven't really looked into it yet myself.

Quoted from lexi:

Hi Great restoration project, is there a specific brand or make of replacement cabinet decals for the TZ? Or do some original ones exist if there is such a thing?
Also what is your view on the retaining of serial number labels/stickers and is it possible to get items like that remade?

#52 1 year ago

Currently I'm in the middle of repairing any imperfections on the backbox. The back had absorbed some water, so was a bit fluffy when I started. I used Minwax Wood Hardener to stabilize, and wood filler over top of the little craters that are eventually left behind after sanding such a situation (as you can see little specs of wood filler all over pic one). There were several gauges in the backbox, and also the glue pulled up some of the grain on the sides. I personally put a thin layer of wood filler along each side, and sand it down until it's flat. The first and second pics are after sanding the second layer, the last pic is of the third, and hopefully one of the last wood filler layer I'll have to do, although I'll do another if the corners aren't nice and sharp.

Unfortunately, I won't get the full scope of what I might have missed without the first layer of primer, but I think I'll be able to get it nearly perfect. Not much to see at this point, but it'll be sweet in a matter of a few days.

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#53 1 year ago

Moving right along on the backbox ... I have it primed, and step sanded it down to 320 - it pretty much feels like a chalkboard, which is sweet, considering all of the moisture the back picked up in it's former life. Next step, I'm going to send the backbox off to my friend Joey who will do the black automotive paint, and clear. I'm gonna start on the rest of the cabinet while I wait for that, and will probably get the warning screen over here within the next couple of weeks to take care of the back while I can. Once the warning screen is done for the back, I'll throw on the sideart, and see how the rest of the cabinet it coming at that point.

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1 week later
#54 1 year ago

Here's the backbox after my buddy spayed it with automotive paint. I'm currently working on the rest of the cabinet, but hopefully in the next week or so, I'll be able to do the warning label screen

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#55 1 year ago

Joey (automotive paint guy) has a suggestion for alternate backbox sideart

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#57 1 year ago

yea, anybody want that new side art package for the head just let me know, it's easy to recreate , i'm cheap too.
maybe i can get a decal made and sell those to replace the ugly art found on some pins out there... Raven comes to mind.
jp

1 week later
#58 1 year ago

Probably the most miserable experience in this whole thing so far was trying to convincingly repair the back on the cabinet. When I got this thing, the back of the cabinet stood out as a challenge, because the wood veneer on the plywood was cracked, and peeling off. I went through and peeled everything back as far as it would go (so I wouldn't have to deal with it later) and eventually had several other parts randomly crack off along the way. None of the pics really show the final bondo content on the cab (because I suck at documenting this stuff), but it was quite a bit.

Once I was at a point that I was pretty comfortable with, I hit it with a thin layer of primer - only to find that I missed several big cracks in the middle. After fixing again for the 50th time, I hit it with another coat of primer to make sure things were taken care of. The biggest challenge was leveling the primer so that there was no wood grain, or difference where the bondo and cabinet met. No matter how flat you have it, there's always a difference between the two once primer is applied (one is flat, and one has grain). It took a bit to work out everything, but this thing is smooth.

Still working this out, but I actually have the two biggest pains taken care of, and perfectly smooth, the other being the bottom of the cabinet. For the bottom, since the wood had picked up a solid amount of moisture, I had to repair it with wood hardener and bondo (same as the backbox) and am just going to have to paint it. Currently, it's also primed and perfectly smooth - more pics to come later.

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#59 1 year ago

Following. Your game looks incredible so far!

1 week later
#60 1 year ago

Just a quick update - I've been working on this cabinet for several weeks, trying to get it perfect, but definitely ran into some challenges. One of the parts I dislike the most, is having to repair the bottom of a cab that has absorbed a bunch of moisture. Besides the back, that stuck out to me as being one of the most unpleasant things left to do - I had success on repairing the entire back of the backbox which had picked up a bunch of moisture, so I knew I could do it, but also knew it would take some time.

I started by sanding out the puffed up lumps in the front of the cab. Once the lumps were fairly even, I poured some minwax wood hardener on, and sanded again to even it out. Once everything was ready, I put some bondo on the area to help with cratering, and although I don't love the idea of painting the inside of the cabinet, it's pretty much the best looking way to go. I've been doing one side at a time, leveling everything out, and step sanding down to 320 grit. Joey (automotive paint/clear coat guy) had mentioned some pinholes on the mdf section of the backbox, so I've been careful to check to make sure everything is level out in the sun.

The only things left to prime, sand and level, are the two outside sections of the cabinet, and the front. I'm hoping to finish all of this up, and send it off to Joey this weekend.

On a side note ... There's been a crazy heat wave that's pretty much been sitting over Georgia, TN, and the Carolinas exclusively in the last week. To all of my friends in my neighboring state, I apologize - I'm pretty sure I blew a hole in the ozone layer with all of the primer I've been using

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#61 1 year ago

next time remove the skids on the back of the cabinet... and reinstall new oak ones after wood working. Makings things much easier.

#62 1 year ago

Most definitely agree, thanks!

Quoted from flynnibus:

next time remove the skids on the back of the cabinet... and reinstall new oak ones after wood working. Makings things much easier.

#63 1 year ago

Lookin good!

#64 1 year ago

Great work!

1 week later
#65 1 year ago

Just got some pics of the cabinet back. Will post some before and after pics once I get it back in my possession. Next step once I get it back is to run the new ground braid, and wait a couple of weeks to put the decals on.

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#66 1 year ago
Quoted from Mneubey:

Just got some pics of the cabinet back. Will post some before and after pics once I get it back in my possession. Next step once I get it back is to run the new ground braid, and wait a couple of weeks to put the decals on.[quoted image]

Wow! That looks glorious!

Just gave your thread a once over, subscribed obviously, and am really taken aback with your progress! Excellent work!

#67 1 year ago

Thanks so much! I really appreciate it!

Quoted from wesman:

Wow! That looks glorious!
Just gave your thread a once over, subscribed obviously, and am really taken aback with your progress! Excellent work!

#68 1 year ago

Just got this back today and absolutely love it, everything is smooth as glass. I'm supposed to get together with a guy that has the backbox warning, and patent screens soon. In the meantime, I think the next step is to rerun the ground braid on the inside. Everything that used to be inside the cab is still cruddy, so need to take care of that bit by bit as well.

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#69 1 year ago

Just a quick update - My friend Ray brought over his screen kit for the patent and backbox warning. Turned out great!!

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#70 1 year ago

So meant to update a bit more last post, but didn't have enough time. I took out the artwork that I bought (next gen), and I was a bit disappointed that it wasn't as glossy as the artwork I normally get. The artwork looked really solid, was just in a satin finish. I really don't want to cut any corners with this project, or have any regrets, so I sold it, and reordered from another place I know of that has extra glossy artwork to match the cabinet. All in all, it was a whopping $7 mistake, so I'm not too broken up about it, will just have to wait for it to be shipped.

On another note, I'm obsessed with how good the screen looks on the backbox. I was a little worried at first that it wouldn't stick particularly well to the glossy paint, but after drying, it's not ever coming off. Also came across a crappy before pic of the backbox (because I suck at pics), you can see how puffed out the back was in the beginning.

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#71 1 year ago

Wow, that's all really impressive, particularly your decal reconstructions.

I don't suppose you take requests do you? I have a TAF with an apron that I got powder coated in a sparkle finish (see attached for example). All of the replacement decals I've been able to find for TAF assume the apron is matt black so have either that as a background, or big strokes around the lightning bolts and logo, etc.

What I'm trying to find - without much success - is a transparent background rather than any black stroke or background, if that makes sense.

Happy to pay

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#72 1 year ago

Hey there, thank you! That powder coat job looks amazing, , and i definitely know the disappointment of not getting the right gloss with decals - my previous post I actually used a vinyl cutter to make airbrush stencils on my playfield, so unfortunately what i did may not help you out. Unfortunately I don't really have a way to make decals.

Quoted from Durzel:

Wow, that's all really impressive, particularly your decal reconstructions.
I don't suppose you take requests do you? I have a TAF with an apron that I got powder coated in a sparkle finish (see attached for example). All of the replacement decals I've been able to find for TAF assume the apron is matt black so have either that as a background, or big strokes around the lightning bolts and logo, etc.
What I'm trying to find - without much success - is a transparent background rather than any black stroke or background, if that makes sense.
Happy to pay [quoted image][quoted image]

#73 1 year ago

Ok thanks anyway

3 weeks later
#74 1 year ago

Finally ... After waiting for about a month, I finally got my decals from pinballdecals.eu ... Overall they are really nice decals, and they have the gloss level that I needed to match the rest of my cabinet. Will post more pics when I do the rest of the cabinet.

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#75 1 year ago

Finished all of the decals, and totally happy with the result. I've had a couple of people ask about the differences between the pinballdecals.eu and next gen 2 decals, so I'll try to quick summarize. Please keep in mind that I literally just took the Next Gen stuff out of the tube, and put it right back in, so I don't know if I have a great perspective.

Next Gen stuff looked really good. The artwork looked really sharp from what I could tell, but I literally only took it out of the tube and put it back in. It actually surprisingly kinda looked screened (although I know that's not the case). My problem was that the gloss level was probably satin at best, and I am going for ridiculous gloss on my cabinet. I have a set of Next Gen decals for Diner for whenever I get back to that, and I've already matched the gloss so that I won't have the same problem I ran into here.

The Pinball Decals artworks looks really good IMO. At first I thought maybe it wasn't as sharp as the next gen stuff, but after further inspection, it looks really good. The colors are really good, and the gloss was exactly what I was looking for. Sizing was great, and the extra vinyl they allotted with each piece was more than enough to make sure you didn't make a mistake. The only issue I had with it (and I've done a ton of sideart over the last decade plus) was it will bubble like a mother if you don't take the right precautions. I don't know what to attribute that to, but as long as you reaaaaaally take your time, you'll be fine.

Anyway, just my .02

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#76 1 year ago

Looks fantastic!
Such dedication

#77 1 year ago

Thanks so much! I'm definitely ready to wrap this one up sometime in the near future

Quoted from Thor-NL:

Looks fantastic!
Such dedication

#78 1 year ago

I'm currently reassembling the cabinet after a great weekend at sfge. I pretty excited about the look with the brand new siderails, but was bummed when i realized I lost an order with leg bolts, metal leg protectors, and the flipper buttons, so had to reorder.

I am trying to make sure I stay focused and thorough, and not think too much about the fact that this thing should be good to go in the next week or so. It's been a hell of a long journey, but I think I welcome it being finished.
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#79 1 year ago
Quoted from Mneubey:

I'm currently reassembling the cabinet after a great weekend at sfge. I pretty excited about the look with the brand new siderails, but was bummed when i realized I lost an order with leg bolts, metal leg protectors, and the flipper buttons, so had to reorder.
I am trying to make sure I stay focused and thorough, and not think too much about the fact that this thing should be good to go in the next week or so. It's been a hell of a long journey, but I think I welcome it being finished.
[quoted image]
[quoted image]

Looks beautiful! I'm excited the end of your project is in sight!

#80 1 year ago

Oh man, The most hair raising part of this entire damned project was getting that playfield in the cabinet. I put it in, and it was stuck ... Turns out I stupidly put the wpc lock rails on backwards, so let's just say that whole experience shortened my lifespan to some extent. I had to prop it up as far as I could and stretch my hand in as far as I could to unlock the thing. Kids, don't make the same mistake, you will be sorry!

Regardless of all the unwelcome drama, I was somehow able to save the beautiful cabinet from any scratches (that I'm aware of). I'm 100% pleased and relieved things turned out ok.

The three most daunting tasks remaining were the coin door, the lockbar receiver, and eventually turning it on for the first time when everything is hooked up. I was able to grind away and take care of the lockbar receiver yesterday, and I ordered a set of WPC decals from Marco the other day that should take care of the warning and inspection decals.

Once my back recovers from lifting that incredibly heavy playfield into the cabinet, it's on to the backbox. On a side note, I found my missing order right before I received my reorder ... oh well.

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#81 1 year ago

So close!

#82 1 year ago

I finally put the thing together and up on legs. I still have a few things that I need to finish up, which includes redoing the coin door, and buying a new lockbar. I spent the last few days chasing down issues, and adjusting things as needed - The good news is that I currently have a playable Twilight Zone, the bad news is my clock board is wonky, and the motor on the gumball machine is not working .. So I had to order a new motor, and also purchased one of Ingo's clock boards. On a side note, the Next Gen translite for TZ is hot garbage as you can clearly see by the pic. I'm going to need to order a mirrored CPR replacement as soon as the rest of the game quits nickel and dime-ing me.

I had a pile of adjustments to make, and I'm currently through almost all of them. The only things I have left to fix are the right side of the GI, which I'm fairly certain I will have fixed shortly, clock and gumball machine (which I stated earlier), the eddy board, and I also have the strangest issue of all ... My left and right magnet optos are flipped. I even tried swapping the harness connectors for each, and they continue to register as opposite. It absolutely makes no sense to me at this point, but it is the Twilight Zone, so I guess I'll roll with it.
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#83 1 year ago
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#84 1 year ago

Yessssss Congratulations! I know its not 100% but in the lineup and mostly working is still awesome! Where did you get the replacement gumball motor? I'm missing the motor, but I have the gearbox.

#85 1 year ago

Thanks! I ordered the motor from marco, but realized that it was the damned harness as soon as i plugged it in ... So i actually have a brand new motor i don't need ... I don't feel comfortable sending the new one back, so I'll give u a deal if u want it.

#86 1 year ago

She’s a beauty! Great job! I enjoyed watching the progress. What I don’t enjoy is now I look at mine like it’s a steaming pile compared to yours

#87 1 year ago

Thanks so much for the kind words! It's still ongoing, and has been a labor of love throught. At this point, I feel like i have so many things to button up, but now i can actually play games on it, which is super cool! I need to figure out why the magnet optos are switched tonight, but once i do, that should be one of the last major issues i need to look into. Thanks for the encouragement throughout

#88 1 year ago

Congrats, nice restore, great work on the cabinet.

#89 1 year ago

Stupidly enough, this is my favorite view of the machine (which practically no one will see). Also - remember kids, buy the upper part of your backbox latch when you order from marco. I can't count how many damn times I've made this same mistake Off to find more stuff to order to justify shipping on a $2 piece.

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2 weeks later
#90 1 year ago

Awesome job! That is beautiful!

#91 1 year ago

Thanks so much! Since the last update, I received my Ingo clock board, and love it! I kind of suspected that the problem with my previous clock board was actually in my wiring harness, and I was correct - so I now have an extra working clock board. Ingo's has interchangeable LEDs, and lights up the clock really well (which is why I have the dark pic at the end). I also went ahead and snagged a color DMD. I went ahead and ordered a CPR mirrored backglass the other day, since the repro translite I have is absolutely horrible. Originally I was going to do PDI glass, and a pinsound board to play Granner's original soundtrack, but I'm not sure I care at the moment.

The only steps I have left are refinishing the coin door, grabbing a new lockbar, and figuring out the two inserts in the door that aren't currently working. Glad to be on the better end of this project, it was a long journey. Will get pics once it's all done!

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1 week later
#92 1 year ago

So I think I'm finally done with this thing. I decided to go ahead and just buy a new coin door, and use the old one on my re imported Wh2o. I also purchased a new lock bar, since the old one had rivets in it, and replaced that awful repro translite with a CPR mirrored backglass.

I saw a few posts where people were worried that the repro backglass was too blue, but IMO it is just about perfect (maybe they adjusted it or something). I am very pleased with the amount of light that comes through, and the overall look. It matches my sideart and playfield blue perfectly IMO. I would say, of the extras that I'd added (color dmd, Backglass, new lockbar and new coindoor) the backglass was the most bang for my buck - maybe a result of my previous translite pouring light through it, and also appearing purple.

I'm still terrible at the game most of the time, but I'm very happy with the result!

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#93 1 year ago

Looks AWESOME! Nice job. I'm thinking about getting the Mirrored backglass for my TZ....

#94 1 year ago

Thanks! I think that was the biggest game changer for me, but then again, look what I started with. If you scroll back one post and look at the previous translite, it was so bad to start with. I am very pleased with the backglass.

Quoted from Seatmandan:

Looks AWESOME! Nice job. I'm thinking about getting the Mirrored backglass for my TZ....

#95 1 year ago
Quoted from Mneubey:

So I think I'm finally done with this thing. I decided to go ahead and just buy a new coin door, and use the old one on my re imported Wh2o. I also purchased a new lock bar, since the old one had rivets in it, and replaced that awful repro translite with a CPR mirrored backglass.
I saw a few posts where people were worried that the repro backglass was too blue, but IMO it is just about perfect (maybe they adjusted it or something). I am very pleased with the amount of light that comes through, and the overall look. It matches my sideart and playfield blue perfectly IMO. I would say, of the extras that I'd added (color dmd, Backglass, new lockbar and new coindoor) the backglass was the most bang for my buck - maybe a result of my previous translite pouring light through it, and also appearing purple.
I'm still terrible at the game most of the time, but I'm very happy with the result![quoted image]

Holy cow!!! It's so beautiful!!!

#96 1 year ago


Congratulations on a job that is clearly very well done! Enjoy!

#97 1 year ago
Quoted from Mneubey:

Thanks! I think that was the biggest game changer for me, but then again, look what I started with. If you scroll back one post and look at the previous translite, it was so bad to start with. I am very pleased with the backglass.

Yeah, I saw that repro translite. wow, it looked milky and muted. I have an original translite on mine in almost near perfect condition, but mirrored backglasses look so cool. I also have a TOTAN, which I could get one for as well. was just wondering- does it look better in person than on CPR's website??

Thanks! Dan

#98 1 year ago

That's actually a great question. I'd say the website has an accurate representation. The mirroring is super cool, but it's also very subtle. I kept thinking i put a huge scratch in the back of it every time I caught sight of the mirroring. For me, if I had a perfect original, I would have stuck with it instead, I'm not sure anything would beat that. For example, I also bought a Diner backglass with one of cprs playfields (since it was discounted) - it looks amazing, but comparing it to my original after cleaning it up (which turned out to be in perfect condition without all the crud) it seemed slightly less sharp, and now I'm debating on which one I will eventually use, although the mirroring is a bit more striking for the diner backglass.

All in all, I'm not sure anything beats an unfaded and nice original translite, but I also don't have a perfect one to compare it to. The cpr backglass does look absolutely stunning, and I have absolutely no gripes at all - still my favorite addition in this restoration. I will note that Im also using incandescent bulbs, and with them, the colors in the backglass perfectly match the rest of my machine.

Quoted from Seatmandan:

Yeah, I saw that repro translite. wow, it looked milky and muted. I have an original translite on mine in almost near perfect condition, but mirrored backglasses look so cool. I also have a TOTAN, which I could get one for as well. was just wondering- does it look better in person than on CPR's website??
Thanks! Dan

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