(Topic ID: 33446)

Vid's Guide to Ultimate Playfield Restoration

By vid1900

8 years ago


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#7551 53 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Fandango:

so if you come from the bottom the tool does not need to go through to the other side? is it possible to make partial holes with it?
that is the part I do not understand about the process

Please read post #7533.

#7552 53 days ago

I missed that one. thank you.

#7553 52 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Fandango:

so if you come from the bottom the tool does not need to go through to the other side? is it possible to make partial holes with it?
that is the part I do not understand about the process

You drill down a little, then put the drill in reverse.

This usually spins out a chunk of wood.

Now grab the exposed screw shaft with Needlenose Vice-Grip pliers.

Turn shaft CCW.

Plug hole with slice of dowel

#7554 52 days ago
38UT58_AS01 (resized).jpg
#7555 51 days ago
Quoted from jadziedzic:

All you folks screwing those post screws into new playfields: get some screw wax! Seriously. A small amount of screw wax on the threads will make a tremendous difference in the force required to seat the post screw and prevent breakage. Like this stuff: https://www.fastcap.com/product/screw-wax
Just a dab will do - and the screw doesn't have any tendency to back out or loosen due to the wax.

I had totally forgotten about waxing screws. It does help. In college I worked as an assistant to an apartment maintenance guy. He kept a toilet wax ring in his tool cart for waxing screws.

#7556 51 days ago

bar of soap works good too, I used to have a bar of irish spring in the toolbox for that purpose, and the tool box smelled good

#7557 49 days ago

Apologies if this has been covered.
I have inserts on a Williams Stellar Wars that look okay when lit but there are "scratches" (perhaps between the decal and the plastic?) that are apparent when some of the inserts are unlit. These "scratches" are not in the direction of ball travel and they appear to be below the surface finish.
Do I need to scrape these inserts back to the plastic and then re-decal them after lock-in clear?
If so, should I attempt the perpendicular chisel method to remove the finish first?

IMG_3178 (resized).jpegIMG_3179 (resized).jpegIMG_3181 (resized).jpeg
#7558 48 days ago
Quoted from DickHamill:

Apologies if this has been covered.
I have inserts on a Williams Stellar Wars that look okay when lit but there are "scratches" (perhaps between the decal and the plastic?) that are apparent when some of the inserts are unlit. These "scratches" are not in the direction of ball travel and they appear to be below the surface finish.
Do I need to scrape these inserts back to the plastic and then re-decal them after lock-in clear?
If so, should I attempt the perpendicular chisel method to remove the finish first?
[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

Those are from the factory when the playfield was drum sanded - that gets the surface perfectly flat; inserts and plywood veneer all at the same surface. The drum sander is one-directional (as opposed to a random orbit sander), a big machine with a belt that feeds the playfield through, similar to how a board is moved through a planer.

What you’re seeing is very ordinary and normal. I like to replace cupped inserts when I can, and it those sizes are available you could swap them out for new ones, which you’d sand out in such a way that they wouldn’t show scratches. But, that’s a lot of work. I personally would not bother worrying over those scratches. But if they bother you, the process would be to remove them and either replace with new or sand off the graphics and either sand them flat (making them thinner and potentially more brittle) or re-glue them and fill any cupping with clear.

Graphics, yes, you would re-apply using decals in between coats of clear.

#7559 48 days ago

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. This forum is essential pinball.

Every now and then I meet someone who says they are really good at playfield restoration. (And occasionally they are good at it.)

The first thing I ask is about this thread.

They often say,
“No, I haven’t heard of it.”
“No, I haven’t heard of vid 1900”

Guess what then. We discuss other subjects next. When I first began studying philosophy I took this class called philosophy 101. It was a good start.

Welcome to an excellent start if you are here.

Digression over!

#7560 47 days ago

Since setting myself up a while back with a Silhouette vinyl cutter, I’ve taken to redoing key lines and insert text with the airbrush.
Disadvantages are that it probably takes longer to do it this way. Advantages are that you can lay on enough black paint to cover nicely in one pass, and you can reproduce artwork which crosses over the insert and playfield in multiple colors pretty sharply. (That is to say, as in the example here, a true black background and a truly opaque red line would be harder to achieve using clear waterslide decal paper. White paper isn’t an option here unless you are OK with changing the look of the inserts, but I wanted to maintain the actual print-on-plastic look.)

I’m certainly not the first to use this technique but it seems worth mentioning here.

4B03A1C2-E5D1-413E-90F4-04E996C750A5 (resized).jpeg
Black outline and lettering is cut and it into position, masked, sprayed.
2021272D-1978-4E74-B06F-0C6CC24E6D16 (resized).jpeg
Red “pinstripe” stencil applied and sprayed after black has dried.)
70210DBA-A2A7-497C-961C-058BBB9F72B3 (resized).jpeg
I did these only two at a time because positioning all four would have been very hard to do accurately.
EA353DEA-76C6-4625-B8B0-6CA12CDE5BD0 (resized).jpeg
Here I am about to lay down the second stencil for the red.
7FD38C5A-1526-4B70-B2D4-DF9CFF33BECD (resized).jpeg
All four inserts with both red and black details reestablished.

Use *extreme caution* when pulling the stencil on fine details like this. Even on a well scuffed playfield, chances are good that fine lines like this can come up with the stencil. I lost a tiny bit of the 4x line, and cheated by finishing it with a detail brush. There will probably be a little crinkle in the next coat of clear which will need to be sanded out, but it will otherwise look fine when all is said and done.

#7561 47 days ago

That is very nice.
I generally do those by hand which i am sure takes twice as long.

#7562 46 days ago
Quoted from pinballinreno:

Thanks Vid!
I haven't revisited screw extraction in a long time lol.
After looking at that woodcraft extractor it got me thinking.
I remembered that luthiers often just use a roll pin with a couple nothches/burrs cut on the end that fits snug over tbe screw and run it backwards .
This would lead to very minimal wood loss and you can extract from the topside.
T&L tools makes a set but you can just put a couple teeth on a roll pin.
Unscrew-ems.
https://tltools.com/
I havent tried it but it looks very cool.
I will definitly try this the next head that pops off under the playfield.

pinballinreno - I can't thank you enough for recommending Unscrew-Ums. I ordered a few sized bits last week and they came in today. I'm happy to report that not only was I able to extract out the busted screw from the topside (in less than 5 minutes), there was virtually no damage to the hole. After the screw came out, I just re-drilled the pilot hole to the correct size, applied a dab of screw wax, and I'm back in business. I just finished the rest of the topside posts as well.

Unscrew-Um to the Rescue 01 (resized).jpg
#7563 46 days ago
Quoted from Mathazar:

pinballinreno - I can't thank you enough for recommending Unscrew-Ums. I ordered a few sized bits last week and they came in today. I'm happy to report that not only was I able to extract out the busted screw from the topside (in less than 5 minutes), there was virtually no damage to the hole. After the screw came out, I just re-drilled the pilot hole to the correct size, applied a dab of screw wax, and I'm back in business. I just finished the rest of the topside posts as well.[quoted image]

Wow!

This is great news, those little gems are a lifesaver.

#7564 46 days ago
Quoted from Mathazar:

pinballinreno - I can't thank you enough for recommending Unscrew-Ums. I ordered a few sized bits last week and they came in today. I'm happy to report that not only was I able to extract out the busted screw from the topside (in less than 5 minutes), there was virtually no damage to the hole. After the screw came out, I just re-drilled the pilot hole to the correct size, applied a dab of screw wax, and I'm back in business. I just finished the rest of the topside posts as well.[quoted image]

Can i ask what sizes you picked up and which one did you use on that screw?
Thanks
Mike

#7565 46 days ago
Quoted from packie1:

Can i ask what sizes you picked up and which one did you use on that screw?
Thanks
Mike

I bought three - 1/8", 5/32", and 3/16". The guy who makes them recommended the 5/32" for the #6 screw that was busted and needed out. I bought that plus a size larger and a size smaller just in case. 5/32" did wind up doing the trick.

#7566 46 days ago
Quoted from sethbenjamin:

Since setting myself up a while back with a Silhouette vinyl cutter, I’ve taken to redoing key lines and insert text with the airbrush.
Disadvantages are that it probably takes longer to do it this way. Advantages are that you can lay on enough black paint to cover nicely in one pass, and you can reproduce artwork which crosses over the insert and playfield in multiple colors pretty sharply. (That is to say, as in the example here, a true black background and a truly opaque red line would be harder to achieve using clear waterslide decal paper. White paper isn’t an option here unless you are OK with changing the look of the inserts, but I wanted to maintain the actual print-on-plastic look.)
I’m certainly not the first to use this technique but it seems worth mentioning here.
[quoted image]
Black outline and lettering is cut and it into position, masked, sprayed.
[quoted image]
Red “pinstripe” stencil applied and sprayed after black has dried.)
[quoted image]
I did these only two at a time because positioning all four would have been very hard to do accurately.
[quoted image]
Here I am about to lay down the second stencil for the red.
[quoted image]
All four inserts with both red and black details reestablished.
Use *extreme caution* when pulling the stencil on fine details like this. Even on a well scuffed playfield, chances are good that fine lines like this can come up with the stencil. I lost a tiny bit of the 4x line, and cheated by finishing it with a detail brush. There will probably be a little crinkle in the next coat of clear which will need to be sanded out, but it will otherwise look fine when all is said and done.

I was wondering why people would choose a stencil over paper for the inserts and viceversa.
I would think that the paper might encounter adhesion issues , ghosting etc and the stencil is just safer?

Can you tell me what cutter do you use for the stencils and how do you get the shapes into that system?

And last but not least, great job!!

#7567 46 days ago
Quoted from sethbenjamin:

Since setting myself up a while back with a Silhouette vinyl cutter, I’ve taken to redoing key lines and insert text with the airbrush.
Disadvantages are that it probably takes longer to do it this way. Advantages are that you can lay on enough black paint to cover nicely in one pass, and you can reproduce artwork which crosses over the insert and playfield in multiple colors pretty sharply. (That is to say, as in the example here, a true black background and a truly opaque red line would be harder to achieve using clear waterslide decal paper. White paper isn’t an option here unless you are OK with changing the look of the inserts, but I wanted to maintain the actual print-on-plastic look.)
I’m certainly not the first to use this technique but it seems worth mentioning here.
[quoted image]
Black outline and lettering is cut and it into position, masked, sprayed.
[quoted image]
Red “pinstripe” stencil applied and sprayed after black has dried.)
[quoted image]
I did these only two at a time because positioning all four would have been very hard to do accurately.
[quoted image]
Here I am about to lay down the second stencil for the red.
[quoted image]
All four inserts with both red and black details reestablished.
Use *extreme caution* when pulling the stencil on fine details like this. Even on a well scuffed playfield, chances are good that fine lines like this can come up with the stencil. I lost a tiny bit of the 4x line, and cheated by finishing it with a detail brush. There will probably be a little crinkle in the next coat of clear which will need to be sanded out, but it will otherwise look fine when all is said and done.

Nice Cyclops.

#7568 45 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Fandango:

I was wondering why people would choose a stencil over paper for the inserts and viceversa.
I would think that the paper might encounter adhesion issues , ghosting etc and the stencil is just safer?
Can you tell me what cutter do you use for the stencils and how do you get the shapes into that system?
//<![CDATA[
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And last but not least, great job!!

Cameo or silhouette vinyl cutter.

They are extremely handy.

#7569 45 days ago

More updates from the Cyclopes restoration...

I was cutting through the ball swirls on this playfield using ME & isopropyl alcohol, and at some point realized those swirls and planking were co-mingled. Translation: I had cut through the finish and the inks and was scouring off the finish.

It happens.

A word about “Cyclopes”...look you guys, whatever the opposite of Woke is, this game exemplifies it. Let’s just get that out in the air right now, OK? This playfield is straight up *nasty*, lol.

Anyhow...this...bondage bikini lady...the planking was really showing badly through the lower portion of this figure. Ball swirl is ground in dirt from the surface, but planking means cracks in the ink from *underneath*. So you’re kinda screwed when planking is in the mix with ball swirls.

I got on to using white water slide decals from another Pinsider’s thread for things like this. The toughest part is trying to match colors using your printer’s toners/inks, which are pretty darn different from silkscreen inks. I usually end up making a bunch of test prints on plain paper until I get something I don’t hate, swapping out different Pantone values just so I have a semblance of a systematic approach.

EB06F0A4-C3E6-4BA1-A71B-982E22DA45E5 (resized).jpeg

Yes, I settled on the blue not being a perfect match. You’d be amazed how well things blend once the playfield is populated and the lights are lit up and the glass is on and you’re playing the game. Overall, this is a pretty good match.

4D6B4813-6CE0-4509-BB49-56D1E272BA55 (resized).jpeg

I like to identify the colors each time I do a test print, so I know what direction my tests are going. I end up with a pile of tests. This was the last one, printed this time on white waterslide paper.

AD365E64-098C-4676-9B3F-28A683247D55 (resized).jpeg

I have an issue with my Silhouette software that I’d like to get to the bottom of; it can easily cut out this decal perfectly, but it has to be printed from within its software. Silhouette can’t handle AI files, and something about the exported format tweaks the color palette. So…I had to cut this damn thing out with an Xacto knife. Vid has warned us not to do this, and he’s right - you’re going to get a rough edge somewhere that makes the decal hang up and potentially ruin itself on the way off the paper. It’s a major pain and yes, I had to do this twice. Second time laid down smoothly.

F3F5641D-848E-463C-AF83-F06645C4EE61 (resized).jpeg

Here’s the decal in situ. Looking good.

75F182A7-E169-4B9A-9DBC-14B2A5FF2FED (resized).jpeg

You can even see a bit of the planking through the image, just slightly. I like this, actually, because it allows the repair to blend in better with the rest of the art.

One drawback to this is that no home printer I have used ever throws down a really rich black.
So, after this decal I then need to print another which is only the black layer on a clear decal. Ideally would be to place that over the color decal, but I wasn’t sure that was going to work on something this large without messing up the color one. So, it got a coat of clear and the black will go on before the final coat. More pics later.

#7570 45 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Fandango:

I was wondering why people would choose a stencil over paper for the inserts and viceversa.
I would think that the paper might encounter adhesion issues , ghosting etc and the stencil is just safer?
Can you tell me what cutter do you use for the stencils and how do you get the shapes into that system?

Waterslides definitely still have their place, but I am using them more sparingly these days. But for certain things they are really the answer. The vinyl cutter can only go so small on details, so sometimes it just isn’t the right way to go. White lettering is probably accomplished better using dry rub transfers once you get to a certain point, but the cutter is nonetheless very versatile. I wish it were possible to get someone local to make dry rub transfers; the price point would sting if they came back and something was wrong!

I use the Silhouette; I suspect the Crikut is pretty darn comparable for our purposes; Silhouette got slightly higher marks in the reviews I read but that probably doesn’t mean much. I work a lot in Photoshop because it’s easier for me, then I export files to AI to vectorize the graphics layer by layer. That step may be unnecessary some of the time but it’s just what I do now; vectorizing “de-pixelates” the image and makes everything smoother.
From there the file/s have to be exported in a format the Silhouette understands; I usually use TIFF.

#7571 45 days ago
Quoted from sethbenjamin:

So…I had to cut this damn thing out with an Xacto knife. Vid has warned us not to do this, and he’s right - you’re going to get a rough edge somewhere that makes the decal hang up and potentially ruin itself on the way off the paper. It’s a major pain and yes, I had to do this twice. Second time laid down smoothly.

Always use a sharp, absolutely fresh blade to cut out a decal, it can help minimize areas of hangups. Most scale modelers do cut their decals, even the factory ones in the kits, to minimize the film. You also cut away from the decal always, even if it means cutting a curve in two pieces.

Quoted from sethbenjamin:

One drawback to this is that no home printer I have used ever throws down a really rich black.

If you're capable of doing a direct CMYK print to the printer, use "rich black", which throws around 40% coverage each of Cyan, Magenta and Yellow. It can really help deepen a black. But yeah, most home printers try to make everything look good and get in the way of a professional result.

#7572 45 days ago
Quoted from sethbenjamin:

I have an issue with my Silhouette software that I’d like to get to the bottom of; it can easily cut out this decal perfectly, but it has to be printed from within its software. Silhouette can’t handle AI files, and something about the exported format tweaks the color palette.

What about exporting the file from AI to a .dxf format, that is what I use to make all my cutting files. Not sure how it will handle colors, but for cuts, it does it perfectly.

pasted_image (resized).pngpasted_image (resized).png
#7573 44 days ago
Quoted from Atari_Daze:

What about exporting the file from AI to a .dxf format,

I’ll keep that in mind when saving files for stencils - I imagine a .dxf is way smaller than a .tiff! I always end up with 60 different files in different formats lurking on my external drive, probably never to be used again, lol.

#7574 44 days ago
Quoted from LynnInDenver:

If you're capable of doing a direct CMYK print to the printer, use "rich black", which throws around 40% coverage each of Cyan, Magenta and Yellow.

I haven’t seen an option for that on my setup. Doesn’t mean it isn’t there, but my printer (a Xerox phaser) has a whole rat’s nest of sub-options to navigate through. There are Image Adjustment settings which allow for saturation and darkness shifts (among other things); on a plain black I just bump both of those to maximum. On a color decal they introduce so much variability I’ve tended to leave them alone while color matching. Might actually make sense to bump them up while making tests…it’s always a decision tree I struggle with.

I’ve fantasized about buying some really nice printer at some point, but it seems like there’s not really a mid-point between consumer model printers that cost $300 and a commercial print shop version that costs an order of magnitude more and is the size of a VW. I go through this frustration every time I work on a playfield that needs this sort of technique.

#7575 44 days ago
Quoted from sethbenjamin:

I haven’t seen an option for that on my setup.

In some software packages (like Illustrator at least), it can also be an option in the file, so that when you specify your 'black', it adds on the 40% to the colors as well. (In case you can't find it in your printer settings..)

#7576 44 days ago
Quoted from sethbenjamin:

I haven’t seen an option for that on my setup. Doesn’t mean it isn’t there, but my printer (a Xerox phaser) has a whole rat’s nest of sub-options to navigate through. There are Image Adjustment settings which allow for saturation and darkness shifts (among other things); on a plain black I just bump both of those to maximum. On a color decal they introduce so much variability I’ve tended to leave them alone while color matching. Might actually make sense to bump them up while making tests…it’s always a decision tree I struggle with.

Generally speaking, when I'm specifying a "rich" black, I'm setting it up manually in the art file itself - at work, we need to print both straight black (typically text), and rich black (typically large black fills), so we set it manually on those fills.

#7577 44 days ago
Quoted from LynnInDenver:

Generally speaking, when I'm specifying a "rich" black, I'm setting it up manually in the art file itself

I want to understand this. I presume this is a function within AI but I haven’t heard of it before. Can you give specifics? Thanks!

#7578 43 days ago

as I continue my research and learning experience by reading this thread an other experience I am still debating what gear to get.

The premise is to buy the smallest compressor possible that would allow me to paintbrush and also clear coat, if it is cutting to thin, I might consider upgrading the compressor.

I have been reading online and a lot of people are using this:
https://www.makitatools.com/products/details/MAC2400

It looks like it could work for most things but I am not expert.

Thoughts?

#7579 43 days ago

Makita: Powerful 2.5 HP 4-Pole motor produces 4.2 CFM at 90 PSI for increased productivity and lower noise

Vid: Just for a worst case scenario: figure that a HF cheap gun needs to run @ 6 CFM and 47 PSI to smoothly shoot Shopline JC 661 clear.
Taken from: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/vids-guide-to-ultimate-playfield-restoration/page/5#post-728412

So NO, would not likely work for HVLP spray guns.

#7580 43 days ago
Quoted from Atari_Daze:

Makita: Powerful 2.5 HP 4-Pole motor produces 4.2 CFM at 90 PSI for increased productivity and lower noise
Vid: Just for a worst case scenario: figure that a HF cheap gun needs to run @ 6 CFM and 47 PSI to smoothly shoot Shopline JC 661 clear.
Taken from: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/vids-guide-to-ultimate-playfield-restoration/page/5#post-728412
So NO, would not likely work for HVLP spray guns.

Nobody here using these?
There is a bunch of people using it. They also recommended the next model 5200 but there are people painting bikes with the 2400 and should be enough for clear as well.

The theory says it wont but practice says differently according to what I have reading. So was just hoping to see it anybody here runs one of these.

#7581 43 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Fandango:

Nobody here using these?
There is a bunch of people using it. They also recommended the next model 5200 but there are people painting bikes with the 2400 and should be enough for clear as well.
The theory says it wont but practice says differently according to what I have reading. So was just hoping to see it anybody here runs one of these.

If a Spraymax can works so will this.

With less air and pressure you can only make short strokes and have slightly less control.

Its more about the gun than the compressor.

You will get lower cfm at the lower pressures, possibly more orange peel and uneven coverage.

But a playfield is tiny and you might get away with it.

#7582 43 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Fandango:

Nobody here using these?

Not that have posted any results I've seen. However in just looking up their cost, I paid over $100 less for my 30 gallon Kobalt floor standing oil lubed compressor, found it on CL, guy used it once to spray his deck boards.

Shop around!

pasted_image (resized).png
#7583 43 days ago
Quoted from sethbenjamin:

I want to understand this. I presume this is a function within AI but I haven’t heard of it before. Can you give specifics? Thanks!

So when you have the Color palette up, or you can even use the Swatches palette to have it available to assign, you make it C=50% M=40% Y=30% K=100%. Basically, the CMY portions help to "enrich" the K (Black), making it darker. In a print shop, doing 4 color work, it helps keep the black from washing out. It's only used for fills, we never use it for type.

#7584 42 days ago

First lockdown coat; still have some artwork to fix, water slides for inserts and painting of the GI white areas. Giving it a week before knocking down with a block and starting another round of work.

20210807_122123 (resized).jpg
#7585 40 days ago
Quoted from sethbenjamin:

Since setting myself up a while back with a Silhouette vinyl cutter, I’ve taken to redoing key lines and insert text with the airbrush.

What model do you have?

#7586 40 days ago

That playfield looks very nice out of the gate

#7587 40 days ago
Quoted from PinballAir:

That playfield looks very nice out of the gate

Thank you I have been working on it on and off for several months now. There is many, many areas that have been touched up and repaired.

#7588 40 days ago

Block sanded with 600 grit, whites done. Next step is to dropper some low spots, touch up around the poppers and clear again.

20210809_192945 (resized).jpg
#7589 39 days ago
Quoted from Atari_Daze:

Makita: Powerful 2.5 HP 4-Pole motor produces 4.2 CFM at 90 PSI for increased productivity and lower noise
Vid: Just for a worst case scenario: figure that a HF cheap gun needs to run @ 6 CFM and 47 PSI to smoothly shoot Shopline JC 661 clear.
Taken from: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/vids-guide-to-ultimate-playfield-restoration/page/5#post-728412
So NO, would not likely work for HVLP spray guns.

Someone with more experience can **get more** out of a tiny air compressor and a hungry gun.

For a regular joe, with no auto finishing experience, your best bet is to just get a used, real, american made compressor for $100-150

It will outlive you, have endless air reserve, and can be serviced anywhere

This Saylor-Beall was $100 on CL last week. It could eat 200 of those Chinese oil-less rattler compressors, they still make the almost exact same model 50 years latter.

Kids don't recognize anything that is not Chinese, so if it does not say Dewalt, Husky, Kobalt, Makita or Porter Cable, it goes for pennies....
01717_eGx0RuSm87Pz_0gw0co_1200x900 (resized).jpg

#7590 39 days ago
Quoted from vid1900:

Someone with more experience can **get more** out of a tiny air compressor and a hungry gun.
For a regular joe, with no auto finishing experience, your best bet is to just get a used, real, american made compressor for $100-150
It will outlive you, have endless air reserve, and can be serviced anywhere
This Saylor-Beall was $100 on CL last week. It could eat 200 of those Chinese oil-less rattler compressors, they still make the almost exact same model 50 years latter.
Kids don't recognize anything that is not Chinese, so if it does not say Dewalt, Husky, Kobalt, Makita or Porter Cable, it goes for pennies....
[quoted image]

Wish that was true in my area. I’ve looked on and off for years and never found one I’d buy. Usually they’re questionable condition and I don’t know enough about them to want to roll the dice.

Also ran into scammers a few times so watch out.

Lost access to the compressor I was using so now I’m back digging around on aircompressorsdirect.com

#7591 39 days ago
Quoted from radium:

Wish that was true in my area. I’ve looked on and off for years and never found one I’d buy. Usually they’re questionable condition and I don’t know enough about them to want to roll the dice.

That's exactly what you want.

Just like you always want to find a Pin that the owner says "Lights up, but won't start a game". Hell yeah!

An air comp is:

1. Big tank. As long as there are no holes in it, you are good.
2. Head. The compressor part. As long as you can turn the big flywheel so you know it's not seized, you are good.
3. Motor. As long as you can turn it and it does not look burned. Every city has a motor rewinding shop that can fix a winding or replace bearings.
4. Belt. Same ones as the auto parts store sells. Often missing, which keeps it from working....

That's it.

There are a few valves, gauges and fittings, but all that stuff is available at harbor freight

So you find that old dusty Speed-Aire for $100, make sure the flywheel can be turned, don't worry about the broken pressure gauge glass.

Take it home, change the oil (usually 10w-40), put a belt on it (sometimes 2 of the same belt, side by side), put a new pressure gauge on it, put a new air filter in it (usually same as lawn tractor)

Turn it on. You got a $4k air compressor for $150 total.

It looks complicated, but way simpler than a pin:

Two-Stage_Air_Compressor_assembled_on_a_vertical_tank_and_equipped_with_a_Joule-Thomson_(JT)_type_refrigerated_compressed_air_dryer (resized).jpg
#7592 39 days ago

Now lets say your old air compressor needs the head serviced, and you are not mechanically inclined . Let's say that it only pumps up to 60 psi when you know it can do 200.

The compressor shop only wants the head, not the whole compressor tank and motor.

Take the belt off, unbolt the head and take it to them.

They will rebuild the seals and rings, and return it to you with a new gasket to re-install. Usually about $90 for a complete overhaul
61+ElaSHPUL._AC_SL1200_ (resized).jpg

(I know you can just buy a whole brand new 3hp head for $120, but that old cast iron one is the one you want, trust me)

#7593 39 days ago

pinball plastic casualty... the paint on this one got affected by isopropyl alcohol (left a rag accidentally on it) and lots of paint dissolved, so I went ahead and cleaned it up, granted a lot of the paint came off, the back white layer and then the some of the black and the orange dot pattern...

I presume this is easy to fix with some airbrushing (except the orange dots), however, the harder part is creating the dots pattern that gives the plastic a darker color mixed with the white background...

The question being, is this plastic garbage now or can the pattern (now gone) of dots be replicated with a decal on the back?
It could be done in this order
Paint the rocks edges in black, then
add decal with dots patters, then,
paint white background over the back of the decal ?

yay / nay ? waste of time and just get a new plastic?
IMG_6327 (resized).jpeg

#7594 39 days ago
Quoted from vid1900:

Someone with more experience can **get more** out of a tiny air compressor and a hungry gun.
For a regular joe, with no auto finishing experience, your best bet is to just get a used, real, american made compressor for $100-150
It will outlive you, have endless air reserve, and can be serviced anywhere
This Saylor-Beall was $100 on CL last week. It could eat 200 of those Chinese oil-less rattler compressors, they still make the almost exact same model 50 years latter.
Kids don't recognize anything that is not Chinese, so if it does not say Dewalt, Husky, Kobalt, Makita or Porter Cable, it goes for pennies....
[quoted image]

I dont have the room for this, also these are none existent in my area. I need something that would get the job done, ideally low noise, small footprint and versatile. I am leaning towards the Makita. I have experience spraying, mind you I have not done it in a few years but the experience is there... I am feeling lucky lol. If the akita does not work, Home Depot will take it back.

#7595 39 days ago
Quoted from vid1900:

That's exactly what you want.
Just like you always want to find a Pin that the owner says "Lights up, but won't start a game". Hell yeah!
An air comp is:
1. Big tank. As long as there are no holes in it, you are good.
2. Head. The compressor part. As long as you can turn the big flywheel so you know it's not seized, you are good.
3. Motor. As long as you can turn it and it does not look burned. Every city has a motor rewinding shop that can fix a winding or replace bearings.
4. Belt. Same ones as the auto parts store sells. Often missing, which keeps it from working....
That's it.
There are a few valves, gauges and fittings, but all that stuff is available at harbor freight
So you find that old dusty Speed-Aire for $100, make sure the flywheel can be turned, don't worry about the broken pressure gauge glass.
Take it home, change the oil (usually 10w-40), put a belt on it (sometimes 2 of the same belt, side by side), put a new pressure gauge on it, put a new air filter in it (usually same as lawn tractor)
Turn it on. You got a $4k air compressor for $150 total.
It looks complicated, but way simpler than a pin:[quoted image]

Wow thank you for this, really helpful... guess I’m back on the hunt

#7596 38 days ago
Quoted from Pin_Fandango:

I need something that would get the job done, ideally low noise, small footprint and versatile.

There are no "low noise" oil-less compressors

They sound like a lawnmower because they are intended to be used outdoors for roofing and siding. You see that even trim carpenters put the compressor out on the porch and run the hoses through the house.

When working in a garage, you will want to put it outside, then close all the doors.

Making matters 100 times worse, is that the air tank is so minuscule. That causes the compressor to run constantly when sanding or spraying; because you constantly are out of air.

You can see the spray coming out in pulses when the compressor is struggling to charge a tiny tank.

-

My old neighbor had a 120 gallon propane tank up in the rafters of his garage, he used as an air tank. It would take 1.5 hours to charge it with his little pancake air compressor during the day. Once charged, he could use the air supply at night when he would do his glass blowing art.

This guy kinda does the same thing with an air tank he found behind a shop:

#7597 38 days ago
Quoted from vid1900:

My old neighbor had a 120 gallon propane tank up in the rafters of his garage, he used as an air tank. It would take 1.5 hours to charge it with his little pancake air compressor during the day. Once charged, he could use the air supply at night when he would do his glass blowing art.

I have one of these sitting on a corner of my property, didn’t even think of using it for shop air. It was used for propane 4 years ago.

#7598 38 days ago

Just be sure propane is out of it!
Propane is heavier than air. By adding compressed air (19% oxygen) it could turn into a bomb or a missle depending on your luck.
I plan on doing the same thing.

#7599 38 days ago
Quoted from PinballAir:

Just be sure propane is out of it!
Propane is heavier than air. By adding compressed air (19% oxygen) it could turn into a bomb or a missle depending on your luck.
I plan on doing the same thing.

I saw a show where the guy made a smoker out of one of these tanks. Took the valve off and filled it with water to displace any residual propane before taking a torch to it. I'm sure there are other ways as well.

#7600 38 days ago

The water method is the route i plan on taking.

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