(Topic ID: 108888)

Video Series: Designing and building a new mod

By kyle5574

4 years ago

Topic Stats

  • 28 posts
  • 13 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 years ago by agodfrey
  • Topic is favorited by 24 Pinsiders


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There have been 13 images uploaded to this topic. (View topic image gallery).

Getaway Tach_20141217.png

#1 4 years ago

After I saw HOOKED connect a real automotive tachometer to his Stern Mustang, I wanted to do something similar to my HS2 Getaway. I plan on synchronizing the tachometer needle with the playfield tachometer lights. I've also thought about boosting the tachometer needle position every time the ball makes a loop around the supercharger.

I'm pretty inexperienced with electronic design. I was working my way through the opening chapters of the "Make: Electronics" book (great book for learning basic electronics) when I first started thinking about making this. Building this mod has been a great way for me to get practical experience. It's also helped me better appreciate all the work that goes into designing and building all the great aftermarket pinball products that are available to us.

Below are all the videos of a multi-part series documenting my experience designing and building a pinball mod. They're pretty long, but I hope the trials and successes along the way will make them interesting.

Getaway Tach Series: http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLZXypXzuz-W3Nu35rhYS4dh87afp_na9_
All of my pinball videos: http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLZXypXzuz-W1a3N0_SjL0kYL04ukL9sOv

Part 1: Concept and prototyping

Part 2: Integrating with pinball circuitry

Part 3: Schematic and circuit board design

Part 4: Circuit board assembly and bench testing

Part 5: Completion

And finally, here it is in action!

#2 4 years ago

WOW!!! Now that's getting in to it. Hope it works.

#3 4 years ago

Just realized I had an insert bulb out during filming. How embarrassing!

#4 4 years ago

Awesome! I wish more people would do this. Thank you!

#5 4 years ago

Now that's a mod! Nice job! If you want to get really crazy, a boost gauge would be cool for balls spinning in the supercharger and a shift light when it's time to change gears.

#6 4 years ago

Great work. I watched the whole thing, looking forward to the rest. Agree with jawjaw on the shift light- you can even find them integrated with tachs.

1 month later
#7 4 years ago

Part 2 of the series is forthcoming!

I'll post the second video tonight after encode and upload. Part 1 covered design and prototype of tachometer control. Part 2 covers the integration of the tachometer with Getaway's lamp matrix.

Here's the latest schematic. It's grown a bit since the sketch I showed in the first video. I hope I'm not getting in over my head when it comes time to lay out the circuit board.

Getaway Tach_20141217.png

#8 4 years ago

Part 2 is posted! In this new video, I connect the tachometer to the lamp matrix, drive the tachometer using a playfield lamp, and begin to formalize the schematic.

...next video will cover fabrication.

#9 4 years ago

shift gear flash would be huge....get a better looking tach...gray frame with led insert might match better? nice work

#10 4 years ago
Quoted from lllvjr:

shift gear flash would be huge

Yeah, the tach is a toy, but the shift light will actually add to the game. I can see forgetting to shift when you're busy, especially in multiball, but you're not going to forget to shift with a shift light. They're really bright! It'd be fun (and mean!) if i could get the shift light to flash during Redline Mania. The last thing you need in a mania mode is a blinding light flashing at you.

2 months later
#11 4 years ago

I finished the layout and routing of the PCB, sent it out for fabrication, and ordered all the components to populate the boards. Exciting!

Latest schematic:

PCB (red is top layer, blue is bottom):

Fancy 3D views:

#12 4 years ago

Just received the first of what will be several parts orders.


#13 4 years ago
Quoted from kyle5574:

Part 2 is posted! In this new video, I connect the tachometer to the lamp matrix, drive the tachometer using a playfield lamp, and begin to formalize the schematic.

Loved your videos part 1 and 2. Thanks for sharing. You took your time to explains things which is appreciated by me, and you've given good insight into how much R&D it takes to develop a quality product.

Can't wait to see part 3 once you get your PCBs back.

Excellent job so far.

#14 4 years ago

Nice work.

2 weeks later
#15 4 years ago

Boards are in!


#16 4 years ago

Nice ! Looks like your hard work is getting ready to pay off.

If you are selling any of your completed mods, or boards I am very interested in purchasing for my Getaway !

#17 4 years ago

very cool. nice detail in the videos and great explanations for the beginner

#18 4 years ago

Please put me on the list if you are taking one.

2 months later
#19 4 years ago

Getting pretty close! I ran some tests on the populated board last night and everything works! ...except for the +12V LED which I mounted backwards. Otherwise, microcontroller and debug header works, tachometer sweeps, shift light works, and the optos work and the micro can sense when lamps are on or off.

Just need to figure out where I'm going to mount the tachometer and the shift light, figure out where I'm going to mount the board, figure out how I'm going to power it, make some cables, and get everything mounted.



#20 4 years ago

I'd like one too if ur selling any

2 weeks later
#21 4 years ago

Part 3 is posted. In this new video I finalize the electronic design, draw the formal schematic, layout the printed circuit board (PCB), and submit it for fabrication.

#22 4 years ago

Please keep me on the "take my money" list !

#23 4 years ago

Thanks for the interest, guys! I need to get it working, figure out where to mount it, figure out how to power it, and make sure it's reliable before I consider selling it. It's pretty close. Making cables this week and then I'll be ready to hook it up to the machine for the first time.

#24 4 years ago

Part 4 is posted. In this new video, I replace my old tachometer with a new flashy one (that goes to 10!), assemble the circuit board, and bench test the circuit board to ensure everything is working.

2 months later
#25 4 years ago

Part 5 is posted. In this new video I playtest the circuit and microcontroller code, optimize the code, install the tachometer and shift light on the playfield, and install the circuit board in the machine. Everything works!

#26 4 years ago

Here's part 6 that shows the tachometer and shift light in action!

#27 4 years ago

I certainly hope you'll assemble and sell kits with instructions!

#28 4 years ago


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