(Topic ID: 18292)

VID's Guide to Upgrading/Rebuilding Flippers


By vid1900

7 years ago



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  • Latest reply 2 days ago by WizardsCastle
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There are 2373 posts in this topic. You are on page 11 of 48.
#501 5 years ago

My guess the first thing you should do is upload a pic of the left and the right flipper mech so everyone can see it.

#502 5 years ago

Well I double checked all my connections and everything looked good. So I checked F5 fuse and it was blown, not a huge surprise but I really wonder what caused it? ( did everything with power off ) Seems everything is gapped correctly and ive played several games and had no issues since. - Maybe the old set-up was taxing it and it finally let go... the contacts were terrible....

Just happy to be playing it again and put a new high score! gotta love new flippers!

#503 5 years ago

I rebuilt the flippers on my Whirlwind this weekend, and this tutorial was extremely helpful. It had the perfect amount of detail.

Thank you very much for creating it.

3 weeks later
#504 5 years ago

Vid, in post #6 of this thread you recommend buying the newer flipper rebuild kit. You recommend the one for 1992-1993, but there is one for 1993 -1998. What's the difference?

http://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=catalog&mode=search&search_in=all&search_str=A-13524-8

#505 5 years ago
Quoted from Fifty:

Vid, in post #6 of this thread you recommend buying the newer flipper rebuild kit. You recommend the one for 1992-1993, but there is one for 1993 -1998. What's the difference?

The latter one has less flipper range of motion

#506 5 years ago

I rebuilt my Getaway flippers 2 days ago. All new parts, even the coils, except the bats and base. After the rebuild, I could backhand the Supercharger ramp from the left flipper from a cradle with ease. The right flipper would really send the ball flying around the left loop.

Now, two days later, I can no longer backhand the ramp and the right flipper isn't as powerful either, except it's better than before the rebuild.

I have the EOS gap set to close at the last moment, 1/16" gap on the bat so it's not rubbing on the bushing.

What would cause the flippers to be so powerful at first, and then lose power a couple of days later?

#507 5 years ago

Are gottleib flippers much different than the williams pictured? Just wondering because the rebuild kits are 3x the price.

#508 5 years ago
Quoted from vid1900:

The latter one has less flipper range of motion

due to longer flipper stops, correct?

#509 5 years ago
Quoted from vid1900:

So many ops have substituted so many parts over the years to keep games running, that it is hard to say what everyone needs.
Updating the flippers to the modern base plates and springs gives them that snappy feel (and replaceable coil stops).

Just and update Vid1900, I got my new base plates and springs yesterday and converted over today from the original Firepower flipper mechs.. All I can say is WOW!! What a huge difference in the snappiness of the flippers. Love the new sound they make also.. Thank you so much for all your past help. New flipper rebuild is awesome!!

Jack

#510 5 years ago

Just upgraded the springs on my Diner last week. Turns out that it had the newer flipper frames and no drilling was needed. The difference in response and power between the conical spring and the WPC style flipper return spring is incredible. The game is so much more alive. Thanks, Vid!

#511 5 years ago

Vid, what are your thoughts on Early SS Bally flippers like used on Centaur & Fathom? Rebuild, replace with something else? I'm leaning towards replace right now for my Centaur II, just not sure how they'd fit.

#512 5 years ago

Are they still the Linear flippers (the ones with the single long rod with the notch machined into it), or has an OP switched them over sometime in the past?

#513 5 years ago

Just recently picked up a firepower. The flippers could use some juicing up.
I was wondering if I could use the old flipper assembly's that I took off my Twilight Zone on the Firepower?
Yes, no, maybe?
And if they would fit what coil should I use with them?
This was as awesome thread by the way.

#514 5 years ago

Firepower uses SFL400/750 coils. Don't know about the TZ assemblies.

#515 5 years ago
Quoted from Arcade:

I was wondering if I could use the old flipper assembly's that I took off my Twilight Zone on the Firepower?

You would need to swap the coils, but it's certainly doable.

#516 5 years ago
Quoted from vid1900:

You would need to swap the coils, but it's certainly doable.

Are FP coils the same length as WPC?

#517 5 years ago
Quoted from cody_chunn:

Are FP coils the same length as WPC?

I was wondering the same thing.

#518 5 years ago
Quoted from cody_chunn:

Are FP coils the same length as WPC?

SFL-19-300/ 30-750 is the "full size" (wpc size) coil, usually seen on Firepower.

#519 5 years ago
Quoted from vid1900:

Are they still the Linear flippers (the ones with the single long rod with the notch machined into it), or has an OP switched them over sometime in the past?

They are the notched ones unfortunately. It seems like Bally was onto something with that design, faster to replace/clean & the spring mounted on the side instead of on the coil. I'm just not looking to spend $70+ for a rebuild kit if something better is out there.

1 week later
#520 5 years ago

REBUILDING BALLY LINEAR FLIPPERS

=========================================

As great as the 80's Bally pop bumpers are, the Linear Flippers are total crap.

The Linear Plunger is heavy, so much of the coil power is wasted moving the giant plunger.

The crank has a little button of Nylon that drives the Plunger.

Because there is so little surface area, the button wears very quickly.

Worse yet, even though we were told by Bally distributors that the buttons were to be sold separately, that never happened. You had to buy an entire new crank.

The cranks are expensive ($12), and the entire rebuild kit is around $70 !

1.jpg

#521 5 years ago

So we already have a weaker flipper because of the giant plunger, now let's add in lots of slop.

The little Nylon Button wears quickly both because of the tiny amount of surface contact area, and because the slots in the plunger were poorly machined.

Looking in the slot, you will see lots of tooling marks that are abrasive to the Nylon Button.

The wear opens a gap in the slot, causing sloppy action. Again, the slop is robbing the flipper of power.

2.jpg

#522 5 years ago

It's hard to imagine a less robust flipper design; but Bally kept making them for a decade.

3.jpg

#523 5 years ago

So what is the solution to the Bally Linear debacle?

Upgrade your flippers by downgrading to the previous generation of Bally flipper mechs !

That's right, we are going to use the much stronger, cheaper, older design.

-

First, order the KT-BFLIP-03 rebuild kit from Pinball Resource ($44 after your 10% discount for ordering $100 worth of stuff):

http://www.pbresource.com/rebuildkit.html#KT-BFLIP03

DO NOT tell Steve you are modifying linear flippers, he will yell at you.

Then order the better Williams EOS Switch also from PBR : #03-7811

The Williams EOS Switch has the little helper spring leaf that makes a stronger electrical contact. Stronger contact means stronger flippers.

-

You won't be using the Compression Springs or the EOS Switches from the kit.

6.jpg

#524 5 years ago

The new Cranks have 3 cap head bolt holes in them to grip the flipper shaft.

We are going to hijack one of the holes to mount a little spring wing arm. The arm is just a piece of "L" bracket. This allows us to avoid the junky Compression Springs, and use the much superior Extension Springs.

Compression Springs ALWAYS break. They also scratch up the Plunger Shaft, putting more wear on the Coil Sleeve and transferring less power to the flippers due to the increased friction.

-

Wipe off the waxy protective coating on the new Plunger Shafts with Naphtha so you don't contaminate the new Coil Sleeves with sticky goo.

-

Flip the coil orientation around so that the lugs are away from the Coil Stop. This will keep the vibration from breaking the fine coil wires off at the lugs.

-

Adjust the EOS Switch gap so when the Plunger is fully pulled into the coil, the switch is opened 1/8" . Not more, not less.

-

Now when you play your downgraded Bally, you will have solid flipper control and better than new flipper power.

5.jpg

#525 5 years ago

BBB_button_Installed_l.jpg

Since I always catch hell if I suggest doing a repair other than stock....

Pin-Logic sells a replacement button that you can put on the end of your crank.

http://pin-logic.com/black-bally-buttons.shtml

$4 is a quick way to get a sloppy set of flippers flipping again.

Is it as good as switching back to old style mechs? Nope.

But it's cheap, quick and it works!

30 years latter, we finally got our replaceable nylon button.

#526 5 years ago

4.jpg

People often comment that they seem to have less range of flipper motion when really worn flippers are overhauled.

This is because worn coil stops change the range of motion.

#527 5 years ago

Is Steve's problem with the conversion one of purity or does the extra power for a game not designed for it have other consequences? Easier to break plastics or anything?

#528 5 years ago
Quoted from aobrien5:

Is Steve's problem with the conversion one of purity or does the extra power for a game not designed for it have other consequences? Easier to break plastics or anything?

I think he just likes to yell.

j/k.

He likes things stock.

#529 5 years ago

I'd like to get a kit for Taxi, and drill to use the other springs. Can someone help me out with links to the right stuff to buy?

#530 5 years ago

Post #6 has the links to one supplier. You can try putting those part numbers in the search engines of other suppliers if you want to shop around a bit. Good luck!

#531 5 years ago
Quoted from Boise_D:

I'd like to get a kit for Taxi, and drill to use the other springs. Can someone help me out with links to the right stuff to buy?

Like Dozer said, post #6 has the info.

Rebuild kit:

http://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=983

EOS:

http://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=262

Bushings:

http://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=270

#532 5 years ago

Just found my coil stop mushroomed head, broken off and inside the filthy, tight-fitting sleeve.

#533 5 years ago

That kit is for later years than Taxi. You sure it will work? I was expecting to have to get the regular kit for my year + the preferred springs and then drill. Did I misunderstand? Thanks in advance

#534 5 years ago

It will work, all you need to do is drill 2 tiny holes.

#535 5 years ago

Great idea using the extension spring!

I always use the linear coil stops (A-613-127) when converting a Bally over to non-linear flippers. The stops that come in the PBR non-linear rebuild kit are crap and extremely prone to springboarding.

#536 5 years ago
Quoted from erichill:

Great idea using the extension spring!

It's SOOOOO much better than a Compression Spring!

Quoted from erichill:

I always use the linear coil stops (A-613-127) when converting a Bally over to non-linear flippers. The stops that come in the PBR non-linear rebuild kit are crap and extremely prone to springboarding.

I have not had a problem with the latest batches, but the older ones were a prob.

I do oftentimes find that the base plate holes are stripped for the coil stop, so often I have to run a longer bolt all the way through and put a locknut on the back. If you find the coil stop loose upon dissassembly, assume the holes are stripped.

#537 5 years ago

What to do if your flippers travel too far? See attached.

Also, is it safe to assume these DE flippers are supposed to have rubber stoppers in the brackets?

IMAG0911.jpg
#538 5 years ago
Quoted from aobrien5:

What to do if your flippers travel too far? See attached.

Replace coil stops with new correct ones.

Really, I'd rebuild the whole mechs because who knows how worn all the other parts are.

Quoted from aobrien5:

Also, is it safe to assume these DE flippers are supposed to have rubber stoppers in the brackets?

Yep rubber bumper 545-5105-00

#539 5 years ago

I was changing the sleeves and coil stops on a TFLE and noticed that the old coil stops were a lot thicker than the new ones from Pinball Life. I changed the original coil stops on ST and ACDC recently and they were like the new ones from PBL. They worked fine but the flipper travel on the STLE seems a little longer. I'm not the first owner of the TFLE so there's a chance the coil stops aren't original.

Has Stern changed to a cheaper coil stop and does anyone still carry the heavier (better quality) ones?

Here are the ones from PBL: http://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=274

1 week later
#540 5 years ago

VID, you mention adding a bent L-bracket when updating the old linear flippers. I am going to do a total rebuild of my EBD flippers.

Where do you find this bracket? I assume it's not a stock piece.

#541 5 years ago
Quoted from TrainH2o:

Where do you find this bracket? I assume it's not a stock piece.

It's just a thin, sheet metal L-bracket.

You probably have 20 of them in your junk box that you are keeping for some reason, lol.

You could saw a wide bracket in half with a hacksaw to make one, if you don't have any thin ones.

There is obviously very little tension from the spring, so they don't have to be very sturdy at all.

41RT904DKML._SX300_.jpg
#542 5 years ago
Quoted from vid1900:

It's just a thin, sheet metal L-bracket.
You probably have 20 of them in your junk box that you are keeping for some reason, lol.
You could saw a wide bracket in half with a hacksaw to make one, if you don't have any thin ones.
There is obviously very little tension from the spring, so they don't have to be very sturdy at all.

41RT904DKML._SX300_.jpg 6 KB

Nice, thanks for the clarification. I suppose if I used one of those, I wouldn't even have to drill the mounting hole, or the hole to hold the spring.

#543 5 years ago
Quoted from TrainH2o:

Nice, thanks for the clarification. I suppose if I used one of those, I wouldn't even have to drill the mounting hole, or the hole to hold the spring.

If you get lucky, then you won't have to do anything.

If not. saw it, bend it, drill it - spend a manly 10 minutes in your garage.

You can use the old linear crank arm as a guide as to how far to bend it so the spring has the same amount of tension.

It would be great if someone who works with metal could make up a bunch of these.....(hint, hint, Cliffy.....).

2 weeks later
#544 5 years ago

Picked up a beautiful TOM and have an issue with right flipper sticking. Power off and it stays up so its mechanical...I replaced coil sleeve and filed coil stop (new one ordered) On inspection here is what I found. When the flipper goes all the way up the leaf switch is triggered by the little arm that pushes it against it. The tip of the leaf switch stops about half way up that rocker arm and there seems to be just enough tension to bind it no matter how I bend tip of leaf...all metal pieces look smooth. It is missing the little black plastic tip that slides over it but I am adding one tonight.

When I put it all back together hoping the new stop and maybe a new spring will solve this. Seems weird but anyone have their leaf switch catch on the metal arm that trips it?

ill post a pic of it stuck later

Thanks

#545 5 years ago
Quoted from billsfanmd:

Picked up a beautiful TOM and have an issue with right flipper sticking. Power off and it stays up so its mechanical...I replaced coil sleeve and filed coil stop (new one ordered) On inspection here is what I found. When the flipper goes all the way up the leaf switch is triggered by the little arm that pushes it against it. The tip of the leaf switch stops about half way up that rocker arm and there seems to be just enough tension to bind it no matter how I bend tip of leaf...all metal pieces look smooth. It is missing the little black plastic tip that slides over it but I am adding one tonight.
When I put it all back together hoping the new stop and maybe a new spring will solve this. Seems weird but anyone have their leaf switch catch on the metal arm that trips it?
Thanks
For somemreason

Yes. It is the inevitable eventuality with worn stops and plungers, or the wrong plunger type installed (too short), or the wrong EOS installed.

#546 5 years ago

I have a demo man
Im currently rebuilding the flippers.
one thing I don't understand in the tutorial is that it states that the EOS should be closed in the flipper rest position.
on my machine the EOS is open in the rest position and closes on the energize position

do I have my EOS set up wrong?

#547 5 years ago

Has anyone summarized all of Vids knowledge into one document with pictures for future reference.
Lot of good practical experience being shared here.

#548 5 years ago
Quoted from Madmax541:

Has anyone summarized all of Vids knowledge into one document with pictures for future reference.

Check this out ---

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/vids-guides-pdf-version<blockquote cite="#1919296"

#549 5 years ago
Quoted from fuzz:

I have a demo man
Im currently rebuilding the flippers.
one thing I don't understand in the tutorial is that it states that the EOS should be closed in the flipper rest position.
on my machine the EOS is open in the rest position and closes on the energize position

do I have my EOS set up wrong?

You have it correct.

Williams reversed it near the end.

#550 5 years ago

dedicated a whole day to fix this problem in a last ditch effort not to pay a repair guy come out.
still having the same problem

does anyone have a pic of this assembly and wiring?

i rebuilt the flipper again today. still same problem

I also used Jigs advice and switched the opto boards on the flipper buttons. same problem

after a few minutes of play right coil gets super hot to touch, left does not.

any ideas? this machine has been sitting dormant for 6 months now.

here is the original post :i recently installed new coils and I that all was fine until
The flippers on my demo man started to act up last night.
here is the problem when holding the right flipper in the up position the bottom left flipper won't fire.
if i hold the left flipper the right flipper fires fine.
if you hold the left flipper too long it blows the fuse.
i suspect either a EOS issue or a wiring problem, as I recently put two new coils in the bottom flippers, I did buy the proper coil for the flippers.
in the solenoid test the coils are fine except in the hold test. they do nothing

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