(Topic ID: 18292)

VID's Guide to Upgrading/Rebuilding Flippers

By vid1900

7 years ago

Topic Stats

  • 2,362 posts
  • 394 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 7 days ago by dozer1
  • Topic is favorited by 1,080 Pinsiders
  • Topic is sticky in its sub-forum


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Topic index (key posts)

14 key posts have been marked in this topic

Post #6 Get the right EOS switch Posted by vid1900 (7 years ago)

Post #8 Make System 11 Flippers Feel Tight Like Fliptronic Posted by vid1900 (7 years ago)

Post #88 Replace Old Series Coils With New Parallel Coils Posted by vid1900 (6 years ago)

Post #140 Udate Old Solid State Flippers Into Fliptronic Style Posted by vid1900 (6 years ago)

Post #292 List of games with longer/shorter flipper travel Posted by vid1900 (6 years ago)

Post #294 Rebuilding 1967-1979 Flippers Posted by vid1900 (6 years ago)

Post #390 Coil stop differences between system 11 and Fliptronic Posted by vid1900 (5 years ago)

Post #520 Rebuilding Bally Linear Flippers Posted by vid1900 (5 years ago)

Post #710 Classic Bally Early Solid State Flippers Posted by vid1900 (4 years ago)

Post #712 Coil Stop Wear Posted by vid1900 (4 years ago)

Post #713 Plunger wear Posted by vid1900 (4 years ago)

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#133 6 years ago

Hey Vid! I have Firepower and Black Knight. I want to rebuild the flippers (all 6) but want to get away from the coil spring. Does the early WPC flipper with the tab and rebuild kit work in my machines? What would you recommend before I buy parts?

#136 6 years ago
Quoted from GListOverflow:

Pafasa, that should work fine for Black Knight except that you will need new flipper brackets as the older ones do not have the tab where the new spring attaches. $20 for the pair, but you will also gain replaceable coil stops (the System 7 era brackets have the coil stops integrated).
For Firepower I'm not sure if it was still using the older flipper crank with the screws... if so I have not personally replaced one of those brackets yet but someone else suggested in a thread where I was asking about it that it might not be exactly the same size. Check first to make sure.

Quoted from vid1900:

You can migrate over to the new flipper bases.
Don't forget to label your wires before you take everything apart.
If you need step by step, please ask.

So maybe buy the entire assembly from PinballLife? Or buy rebuild kits and bushings and new style plates (where? Can't find them at pinball life)?

#138 6 years ago
Quoted from GListOverflow:

I think you'll also want a couple of the grommets http://www.pinballlife.com/index.php?p=product&id=276
It'll be cheaper to get the rebuild kit plus the bases and bushings than to buy whole new assemblies

Couldn't find just the bases at PinballLife. Thanks!

Figured it would be cheaper to get the parts separately because I don't need the coils.

Sorry, I haven't looked further into this so forgive my ignorance. Will these bolt right in place of the old brackets? Is there any difference in the upper flippers on BK I should know about?

#150 6 years ago

Vid, how do you have time to make all these detailed posts? Great stuff, Thanks!!

1 week later
#170 6 years ago
Quoted from burningman:

quick question...after reading this post I jumped in and did a (partial rebuild). I had a few minutes so went to work on my RFM. I installed the rebuild kit but didn't have enough time to replace the EOS switches. I wanted some instant gratification and decided to play a quick ball before calling it a night. The flippers are so much better...however....
When I put pressure on the front of the right flipper while it is being activated, it holds hard all they way through the stroke and on the hold. On the left flipper, it gives, like its missing power on during the stroke when enough pressure is on it. Is this an example of where the EOS needs to be adjusted/replaced?

Most likely the switches. Finish the job and try again.

#172 6 years ago
Quoted from burningman:

Turned out great...with pretty gold tipped new switches.


1 week later
#178 6 years ago

Is the shaft slipping in the clamp or is it possible that the bat is slipping on the shaft? Broken?

#182 6 years ago

Now you may need to grind the clamp open like vid said. You probably have stretched the clamp a bit and could use that extra turn or two to clamp the new non-defective flipper.

Isn't it amazing how we end up missing things that are right under our noses? I do it all the time.

2 weeks later
#193 6 years ago

EM machines need a little lube in the pivot and rotating points of stepper units. Can't think of anywhere else I would put lube of any sort on any pin from any era.

1 week later
#197 6 years ago
Quoted from mof:

What's the best solution with Grand Lizard, or other pin without the tall Capacitor Brackets?
(see pic)
Do I need to buy the $36 assembly x4 for that ?

Are we talking about doing a flipper rebuild using the newer style spring setup? Is this why you want the bracket with the capacitor mount? To use as the spring mount too?

#199 6 years ago
Quoted from vid1900:

I assume that is what he is wanting it for.
You can screw on a taller bracket to an existing base, but for less than $8, I certainly think that your time could be better spent on other parts of the project.

I agree.

I would like to go this route for BK and Firepower. That makes 6 brackets and 3 rebuild kits and 6 bushings. Is there anything else I need and what pinballlife rebuild kit should i get? There are three kits that all look the same to me, but they are labeled differently.

1 week later
#208 6 years ago

I would check the cabinet switches and all the solder joints on those switches and the coils too. I have heard of some common flipper issue with modern sterns but cant remember specifically what it is right now. I'm sure someone else will chime in on this.

#214 6 years ago

This thread might help a little.


Make sure your EOS switches are good and clean and have good pressure between the contacts when closed.

#219 6 years ago

Yes, Lane Change. Hard to tell for sure, but it looks like they are adjusted closed. They should be open when the flipper is at rest and close when the the EOS switch is hit.

3 months later
#326 6 years ago

If all I have are $50 bills but they are crisp, could I get away with it if I use two?? Or do I need to go to the bank?

1 week later
#333 6 years ago

Here's one not covered in this thread. Rebuilding late Gottlieb EM flippers. The plunger and link (which is a big block of plastic with a guide "pin" sticking out of the back) is not the same as the rebuild parts I got from PBR. has the guide pin been removed for a reason, or do I have the wrong part?

Also, what method is best to remove the roll pin and also replace it. Don't want to pinch the metal tabs of the clamp together and create a bind on the plunger link. Is the orientation of the roll pin important? The slot in the pin should be forward, back, sideways? What do you think is best here?


#337 6 years ago

On the gottlieb EM flipper rebuild..... Thanks vid for the info. I also posted about this to the guys in the EM hangout and this is what I got! Great info on this topic.


Got my answers and then some. Love this place!

3 weeks later
#348 5 years ago

Just not wrenching hard enough. Try a small ratchet with a 1/4 inch socket and a hex bit in it to fit the Allen head side. No extension. Use a closed end wrench on the nut side. Work both wrenches toward each other for the best leverage and also to relieve the stress you are putting on the rest of the assembly.

1 month later
#377 5 years ago
Quoted from BadBrad97:

Vid's only in his 80's?

I think he is 113. Based on the year of his birth, 1900.

1 month later
#388 5 years ago
Quoted from gtown:

Can't you loosen the set screws, adjust the bat shaft (put your gap tool between flipper and PF and push down on the flipper) and tighten them back up? Hope so, I'm doing that to my Xenon (though it would help to have a third hand).

The indentations the set screws make in the shaft can get in your way if you are trying to make a small change. The set screws seem to find their way back to the original spots unless you are making a large change. The fix is either swapping the flipper bats from right to left and vice versa, or buying new ones and getting them set right the first time.

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