(Topic ID: 240940)

United Bowling Alley Restoration Attempt: Help Gladly Accepted!

By RonSS

7 months ago

Topic Stats

  • 382 posts
  • 25 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 2 days ago by Jaymach1
  • Topic is favorited by 24 Pinsiders


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    #304 82 days ago

    Im happy to say I picked up this bowler from Ron. Great game from a great pinsider. I'd also like to thank Ron for doing a lot of the PIA time consuming stuff. I will try to update the thread but im sure it wont be as in depth as Rons posts. I did get the pin hood back in 1 solid piece thus far. I tightened up the cabinet a bit and straightened it out. It now locks. I'm slowly going through it this week and hope to put it together by the end of the holiday. Then tear it back apart and finish the cabinet after its working. The goal is to finish it and get it in the basement before my fiancé isn't my fiancé. Thanks again Ron.

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    #306 82 days ago
    Quoted from Murphdom:

    Thanks for continuing this thread it’s been very informative. At some point I want to pick up a bowler and I’m sure this will help me out in the future.

    Ill try to help when I can. Ron gave me a good start. its mostly cosmetic stuff left. I think I fixed a few issues Ron was having but I wont know for sure till I plug her in.

    #309 82 days ago
    Quoted from RonSS:

    And what the he'll is that "1" pin? I'm #1?

    LOL. Soon as its done I'll have a game party at the house. My basement should be done around the same time. If I have any problems when I fire the bowler up I'll just have Gary wave his hands over it. It seems to work.

    #311 81 days ago

    Here's a little tip on the pin hood nose cone. The reason they crack is because they routed ribs in that piece(kind of like an accordion) so the wood would make the bend which in turn made it really weak. Rons buddy used this same technique to make the replacement piece I currently have and it came out great. After I attached the new one, I then filled the ribs with 2 part epoxy. It really strengthens it up and makes it so it wont crack again. If you have one that isn't cracked I'd recommend doing this before it eventually happens. Im sure you could use something besides epoxy but its what I like to use.

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    #313 77 days ago

    Made some good progress on some of the cosmetic stuff during the holiday weekend. 2 back box covers, both back box pieces and the pin hood are all painted (minus stencils).

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    #317 77 days ago
    Quoted from RonSS:

    I feel sorry for your shuffle,,,
    Shaping up to be an awesome vintage game room!

    Lol, my poor shuffle is my workbench for now. If I could actually finish my basement I could move it to my restoration room in the basement. This thing is so big it has to stay in the living room until the basement is finished.

    #318 74 days ago

    Not a ton of progress, just a lot of sanding.

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    #320 74 days ago
    Quoted from PinDeLaPin:

    Been following Ron's journey on this machine and now yours. Its looking great keep up the good work I'm really looking forward to seeing a video posted of it fully working and done.

    Thanks. Hopefully I'll have it up and running pretty soon. My dad's not doing well so I've been limited with time to work on the game this week. Lots of hospital visits lately. I'll get back on it soon

    1 week later
    #324 63 days ago

    I got some work done this weekend on the game. The cabinet Is coming together pretty nice. Just need to re stencil the graphics. I think I'm going to take some artistic liberties on the cabinet artwork. Nothing big, just thinking of painting the pins an off white instead of orange and the bowling ball on the side black. Also sanded down the oak and re stained and poly'd it. I used minwax fruitwood for the stain. It's nearly identical to the original stain.

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    #326 62 days ago
    Quoted from RonSS:

    Did you get a chance to try the pin deck lights?

    Not yet. I'm out of town till Sunday. So hopefully next week. Ill fire it up, make a short list and bang out the remaining issues. That's probably the first thing I'll look at. Its got to be something simple (I hope). Luckily the guy before me did all of the hard stuff.

    2 weeks later
    #329 43 days ago
    Quoted from PinDeLaPin:

    Anything new to report?

    Sorry guys, I'm finally back on it this week. Unfortunately my dad passed away a few weeks ago so my time to work on my games had been very limited.

    I reassembled all 4 pieces last night and trouble shot some lighting issues. Here's a half ass Pic of it lit up. I'll take some better pics later and post them tonight. It's really coming together nice imo.

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    #330 43 days ago

    Quick question. When the ball passes under the pins and through to the back, is it supposed to hit the backboard of the cabinet? It seems like it should. My question is, is there supposed to be some kind of cushion (like a rubber mat) attache'd the the backboard?

    #332 43 days ago
    Quoted from RonSS:

    From the TOP vid I watched, it seemed as though this model does not have cushioning on the back panel.

    OK, thanks Ron

    #335 43 days ago
    Quoted from Mopar:Although the ball doesn't usually make it to the door, the ball lift door is suppose to have a padded cushion. If it's the original
    door, you should be able to see the black streaking outline..
    But it's a folded rubber with a protected canvas in front of it that the ball first (and usually only) makes contact with..

    This is what I currently have. It looks like everything is there. The door is new, courtesy of Ron. I see how it should hit the cushion piece after it goes through. Guess I'm going to have to start it up and try it.

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    #337 43 days ago
    Quoted from Mopar:

    I guess the padding on the door isn't a must, but whenever I restore a small ball bowler, I
    replace the door's padding. I make sure to contact cement rubber/padding that doesn't leave
    scuff marks on the balls.

    I have some rubber padding, I'm definitely doing that.

    #340 43 days ago

    Going to have to pull the ball lift motor apart I guess. It ran fine for a while, then it got slower and slower till it stopped moving. I let it cool down for a while, started it again and it worked for a minute or two before it did the same thing. I oiled it and let it cool again and no change. The belt isn't jamming or putting an unnecessary load on it. Kinda strange.

    #341 43 days ago
    Quoted from RonSS:

    I've got some thin padding if yours ends up being too thick.

    Thanks Ron, I appreciate it

    #343 42 days ago
    Quoted from RonSS:

    Ugh, that sucks. Sorry man.
    I know I took it apart to clean it. Wasn't a hard job, so maybe just needs some more lube/oil? Have you put any oil in the snouts? I didn't put many drops to start with.

    Yes, I dropped some oil in the fill snouts. No change. I'll try to look at it tonight. I had it playing great for a few games till this.

    #344 42 days ago

    Here's a quick vid before the ball lift motor started seizing up on me.

    #349 42 days ago

    That looks to be an 11 footer. I don't believe it separates. The 11 footers had the red trim on the alley. The 16 footers had brown trim.

    #353 42 days ago
    Quoted from RonSS:

    Mopar, thank you, I forgot about the other board. I don't believe mine had it, although Jay should check the scrap wood pile I gave him.

    Yours had the lane connector, it was in the "scrap" pile you gave me. Lol

    #354 42 days ago
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    #356 42 days ago

    I broke down the ball lift motor tonight. I could barely turn the pully by hand. One of the 3 gears is seated in the back half (pully side) of the aluminum case and spins in the hole of the case. It was not spinning very easily. I popped the gear shaft out and polished the shaft and the hole it sits in. Then lightly greased the shafts and filled the case with oil. I assumed there was supposed to be oil in there since it had a fill hole on the side and a gasket between the 2 pieces of the case. Just played 5 games back to back and everything worked great. Just need to finish up some small stuff and do the stencils. I'm pretty psyched though.

    #357 42 days ago
    Quoted from RonSS:

    Hey, did you get that hinge issue resolved?

    Yes all the hinges are good and the cabinet straightened and reinforced.

    #358 42 days ago

    Here's the culprit. Would barely turn where it was seated in the case.

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    #360 41 days ago
    Quoted from RonSS:

    Weird that it played fine for a while then acted up. Heat/friction or gear positioning off?

    It was super tight and you could barely turn it by hand. Couple that with some heat after the motor ran for a while and slowly ground to a stop.

    #367 41 days ago
    Quoted from RonSS:

    Without the ball lift box, I and a friend carried the bug lane section. It definitely isn't light, but 4 guys would be a cake walk.
    If it's the full 14 feet, definitely a 4 man job. Could probably get away with 3 people.
    Jay, I'm excited to see this finished up! You do such great work!

    Thanks Ron, much appreciated. Just waiting on Gary to cut out my stencils. Lol

    #368 38 days ago

    I decided to get rid of the big switch stack below the lane and replace it with a toggle switch setup. Makes it way easier for servicing the game. Every time I had a problem it was always in the back of my head that it could be that switch stack. No more. First toggle is for the service light, middle is for the pin reset motor, and the 3rd is the ball lift motor. A before and after.

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    1 month later
    #374 3 days ago

    Well, between Ron and I it was a long road to get to this point but I can finally say the restoration is complete(although I'll probably get a new backglass in the near future). I changed up the artwork slightly because the orange and blue pins kind of drove me crazy.

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    #377 3 days ago
    Quoted from cad-kid:

    Looks great!

    Thank you

    #378 3 days ago

    A bit of cool info thanks to Mopar. A 1956 United Bowling alley has a red trimmed lane, if it was made in 57 it has brown trim. So this is actually a 57! Always amazed by Mopars knowledge of these games.

    #382 2 days ago

    Thanks for following guys, it was a fun project

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