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(Topic ID: 72198)

TZ ball release very weak, also most coils seem weaker


By Atomicboy

6 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 25 posts
  • 11 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 years ago by CanadianGamer
  • No one calls this topic a favorite

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#1 6 years ago

I'm not sure what's going on here. The ball release all of a sudden went weak about a month ago, but I haven't had time to address until today. The mech was cleaned and rebuilt when I got the machine, and moves perfectly. In test mode, the ball release fires balls out hard, as it should, real hard, but in game, it just sort of leaks out, but most of the time doesn't have enough umph to get out, takes 2-10 tries before it fully pops out. I guess in thinking about it, it always sort of was weak, but at least it got out everytime. I thought the rest of the coils felt weak as well, but I'm not sure about that.

I have replaced previously Br1-4, and C5 and C11. I know br3 is the solenoid bridge. Since this issue I have now reflowed the headers for the solenoids, fuse clips, C8 (solenoid cap), and reseated all power connectors over to the CPU (I know this has not 50v, not sure why I mentioned this). I reseated the cables from the transformer, but I'm now at a loss on where to go.

The other coils on the same daisy chain are the bumpers and slings, and they seem really good. Where do I go from here?

#2 6 years ago

bump

#3 6 years ago

Could be stress on the wire somewhere running to the coil. Check voltages on the coil.

#4 6 years ago

The mech which serves the ball in the shooter-lane, just passes the proximity sensor 26 by a fraction.
Is it moving freely past this sensor?
You have a little play-space to slide the sensor upfront or a little more back.

About your flippers feeling weak, try to clean the optos on the flipperboards.
Did the trick when mine was feeling weak, the one who operates the little flipper was mine culprit

#5 6 years ago

It's not weak though in test. I fires very hard in test. I rebuilt this thing, and cleaned everything, it moves great. In game, can't hardly get the ball out, in test, fires it out like nothing. It seems like a voltage issue. All wires in the daisy chain are solid, no other coils in the chain/circuit are acting like this.

I'm thinking about swapping driver's next, at least that will tell me if it's board related. I wonder if a driver transistor is on it's way out, but I have only seen these go open or lock on.

#6 6 years ago

I'd probably do the same thing you're thinking, swap out the power transistor. It is cheap enough to do, no sense in even debating it. Worst case scenario is you spent $0.50 on a new part.

#7 6 years ago

I hear ya, but I'm of the school that I don't like heating up traces and pads any more than needed. I'll try swapping the board first, if it's board related, and not affecting any other coil, then it's really just the driver, pre-driver or controlling IC that could be the issue.

Again though, with something weak, I haven't heard of this being a bad component though, as it's usually just one of the two extremes.

#8 6 years ago

Don't think it's a transistor, in test it works fine ....

#9 6 years ago

Can you add your collection? What other games do you have?

#10 6 years ago

He has a bunch, he can easily swap powerboards

#11 6 years ago

I noticed that I am having the same problem yesterday when I fired it up after a few small repairs. I also noticed in game-testing that the proximity sensor likes to think that regular balls are the powerball fairly often.

I'll bust it open again tonight and look into it more but I'll also be following this thread closely.

Cheers,
Greg

#12 6 years ago
Quoted from jrivelli:

Can you add your collection? What other games do you have?

Yeah, a bunch, ample driver's to choose from.

Quoted from Thor-NL:

Don't think it's a transistor, in test it works fine ....

I'm wondering more about C8 the solenoid cap, but again I would expect very weak solenoids elsewhere, and sometimes I think they are weaker, but I don't think so. I cleaned the PF yesterday, and it was playing lightning fast, so I think the problem is just isolated to this coil. If it doesn't turn out to be board related, I may run a jumper from each lug to see if it is a wire issue. The solder joints look solid.

I don't like when the pinball gods start f'ing with my TAF or TZ.

1 week later
#13 6 years ago

I swap driver boards, and no change. I don't know what else to check... mech fires super hard in test, works fine there, mech moves completely freely by hand, I had completely took this apart for cleaned everything on it about 1.5 years ago (for no reason, was just shopping), and again it fires good in test anyway, so it can't be the mech... driver board swap changes nothing. Solder lugs are good, I haven't noticed any other issues with other coils, especially those in the same solenoid circuit, man what gives...?

It's almost like something is draining the current in this circuit when the game is in play...

#14 6 years ago

I had a TZ where the slot scoop would progressively get weaker to the point it would take a couple tries to eject the ball. Very frustrating to deal with/diagnose.

#15 6 years ago

Is there another coil that's being activated (only while in game mode) and dragging down the coil power?

#16 6 years ago

I've checked the other coils on the same circuit and nothing else is having the same problem, and no other coils activating when they shouldn't. It plays great other than this issue.

I just don't know where else to look.

#17 6 years ago

bump - anyone?

#18 6 years ago

I am having an issue with the ball lock not kicking out consistently for multiball, and it also works great in test. Unfortunately I don't have a solution as I haven't even begun to troubleshoot. :/

This is another thread about a weak TZ coil, but he did not resolve the issue either.

http://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/tz-ball-lock-release-a-16307-weak

#19 6 years ago

First, let me note that the time that a coil is pulsed while in diagnostics is different than the time it's pulsed in game play. Each coil has a "game play pulse duration" programmed into the software. But during test, they may all be pulsed for a fixed duration. Makes sense...doesn't it?

Next, have you measured the actual voltage at the weak coil.
Compare that voltage to the voltage for another coil like the pops or slot machine eject.
Any difference?
--
Chris Hibler - CARGPB #31
http://www.Team-EM.com
http://webpages.charter.net/chibler/Pinball/index.htm
http://www.PinWiki.com - The Place to go for Pinball Repair Info

#20 6 years ago

Ok, thanks for your input, that is somewhat helpful, as both of these coils are on the same daisy chain solenoid circuit.

Can you check your ball release in test and in game for me, and let me know if you notice a noticeable difference in power from one to the other? I'll do the same for my lock release. This will at least confirm if this problem is related in the circuit.

This issue is killing me, and not playing TZ is making me grumpy!

#21 6 years ago
Quoted from ChrisHibler:

Next, have you measured the actual voltage at the weak coil.
Compare that voltage to the voltage for another coil like the pops or slot machine eject.
Any difference?

I haven't because again it clearly fires like a cannon in test, so I assumed it was good. I know I know, assume assume, but I thought that was a good assumption. I should I guess measure this in play though, and in test, and see if for some reason there is a drop.

#22 6 years ago
Quoted from Atomicboy:

I haven't because again it clearly fires like a cannon in test, so I assumed it was good. I know I know, assume assume, but I thought that was a good assumption. I should I guess measure this in play though, and in test, and see if for some reason there is a drop.

Electrickery is a funny thing. Measure it.
--
Chris Hibler - CARGPB #31
http://www.Team-EM.com
http://webpages.charter.net/chibler/Pinball/index.htm
http://www.PinWiki.com - The new place for pinball repair info

1 month later
#23 6 years ago

So, I finally figured this out, well sort of. Again, I had previously rebuilt the entire mech and cleaned it completely a couple years ago, maybe less. It still moved insanely easy and freely, so I never looked at it again. Again, it fired balls out with vengeance in the solenoid test, so assumed it was elsewhere.

I had some time to look at this again yesterday, so I examined with the PF pulled forward. I noticed that the old style ball release half circular plunger arm has to somewhat travel up towards the PF (away from the front of the machine so to speak), as there is a switch for the 1st trough spot right there. Still, it appeared that maybe this arm over time from hitting the balls, had bent slightly towards the PF, and was striking the ball to release it quite a bit behind the ball. I bent this slightly more in so it was straight, but not too much, as I didn't want to have it rubbing against the switch. This was enough to send it out as good as any other game now.

So, just posting this in case anyone else has a similar issue. I'm still surprised this was not electronic in nature, as the power it came out in test was almost too powerful, but I'm guessing as someone else noted with the coil timings being different for gameplay as opposed with test fires, this is why - at least I hope

But I now have my TZ back to fully working, which is a big deal.

1 year later
#24 4 years ago

I had the exact same issue. Weak effort but strong during test. I thought the same thing that there was a voltage drop during play. So I tried the method here but instead of bending the plunger I rotated the entire assembly clockwise (looking from under the PF). I loosened the self tapping screws that holds the entire coil and plunger assembly into the wood. This was enough to be able to rotate it closer to the center of the ball trough slot. I figure it walked it's way over from normal use and I'll be visiting this adjustment again some day. Good notes for the factory manual.

4 weeks later
#25 4 years ago

I'm having a similar issue with Lethal Weapon3 lw3, but it's not from the striker alignment. Going to start a thread on weak trough eject coil.

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