(Topic ID: 29323)

Wiring up Hallmark Tron Light Cycles


By captkirk

7 years ago



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  • 95 posts
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  • Latest reply 1 day ago by 85vett
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There are 95 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
#1 7 years ago

Anybody know of a good step-by-step resource?

#2 7 years ago

I hooked mine both up to the 5V molex connector located in the backbox, so that they are both illuminated at all times.

You need to first open each light cycle up and then solder one wire to positive end and another one to the negative end. You'll also need to make sure to either superglue down each button on top of the light cycle so that it is always depressed, or melt it down - either way works but supergluing seems to achieve a much cleaner and nicer looking result.

In terms of feeding the wires, for the blue light cycle I fed it down through the playfield to the right of the recognizer where there are already some wires present. As for Clu's light cycle, I actually have that running all the way to the right and then around the back of the playfield, instead of feeding it down somewhere. It's quite easy to do and the result doesn't look as bad as I thought it would. Can barely see it actually.

You'll have to experiment with the molex connector a little bit to discover where the ground is; can't remember exactly how I wired it but I can check when I get home.

Someone also wrote up a guide which is somewhat useful (but confused me a little bit when I was trying to follow it. It hooks up the two light cycles together in a hub, which I didn't do).

http://www.cnypinballpleasure.com/tron.html

Post edited by Mateui

#3 7 years ago

Yeah, I saw that link and was confused by it. Thanks for your input.

#4 7 years ago

Melting the plastic "on" button was an awful ordeal for me and did a fair amount of cosmetic damage to the bikes. I would try the super glue method if I did it all over again.

#5 7 years ago

There is also the molex connector located at the front right of the cabinet that you can use (3 pin). The top pin is the ground and middle is the 5V (top pin is the end that has the point on it). I used this one and it's the same effect as Mateui (on all the time, which I don't mind at all).

As for the gluing part, what I found worked well was to hold the button down with a toothpick and apply the glue a small amount at a time. The first time I tried I put too much glue in to start and it just didn't set well and made a mess. I found doing a small amount at a time worked well and it didn't take long to get the button glued down.

Drill a small hole in the light cycle to feed your wire through, and also get a pair of small cutters and cut out the spring inside. Then scuff up the positive / negative metal plates and the solder will adhere better.

Once you've got them wired up and the button glued down the next step is to figure out how you want to mount them on the plastic. If you use the existing holes you'll find they won't line up nice and even on the plastic (this is if you put the mounting screws somewhere in the middle of the light cycle, see the picture below for where I mounted mine). Black_Rose and another person installed theirs with one bike doing a wheelie, looks pretty cool (see Black_Rose's braggin' thread). I bought some small rubber washers from Home Depot and used those along with the hard plastic washers that were on the stock units to mount up the bikes, worked nice and easy (and just used the mounting screws from the stock units that the machine came with). You can also trim the rubber washers to make them fit nice and snug underneath the light cycle.

Then as Mateui said, just run your wires down and hook the cycles up. I ran my Tron cycle down to the left and through the hole near the entrance to the left ramp (on the right side of the ramp), you don't even notice it, and the Clu cycle I just ran down a bit and around the back side of the playfield, don't notice that one either. Not a bad idea to get some black shrink wrap that you can put over your wire, that way it won't stand out.

light_cycles.JPG rubber_washer.JPG

#6 7 years ago

Looks great Buckles

#7 7 years ago

I also heard you can use Museum Putty to hold the Light Cycles on there. How does that end up looking if anyone who did it took a picture?

#8 7 years ago
Quoted from Putmick_J:

I also heard you can use Museum Putty to hold the Light Cycles on there. How does that end up looking if anyone who did it took a picture?

You can use Museum Putty or Uglu. Both work great and that is what most people used to secure the LOTR figures on their LOTR LE machine. Both work the same. Museum Putty is white and the Uglu is clear.

#9 7 years ago

Also read that about the Museum Putty (turbo20lbs mentioned it in Black_Rose's braggin' thread). Sounds like a good option.

99111front.jpg

#10 7 years ago

Uglu works great I used it for mine.

#11 7 years ago
Quoted from Buckman:

Also read that about the Museum Putty (turbo20lbs mentioned it in Black_Rose's braggin' thread). Sounds like a good option.

I have been using this stuff for a long time works great if the figure is sitting pretty flush on where you are placing it. I currently have it holding down the Iceman Mod for XM and it is working very well. As mentioned above it is white so if you put too much or it's at a certain angle you will likely be able to see a small amount of white. One way to get around it is touch the visible edges of the putty up with a black paint pen before install then the white is gone.

2 months later
#12 6 years ago

Does anyone sell a premade kit for this mod?

#13 6 years ago

Don't think so.
It's really just a little bit of soldering. I doubt anyone would bother building a kit... but you should be able to find someone to help you if you're uncomfortable doing it yourself.

#14 6 years ago

Can someone please clarify this.....do we remove the existing batteries from the new light cycles? Seems to me that you would have to but it has never been mentioned.

#16 6 years ago

Can someone please clarify this.....do we remove the existing batteries from the new light cycles? Seems to me that you would have to but it has never been mentioned.

You will need to remove the existing batteries from the light cycles, then use a pair of wire cutters and snip out the small spring inside the battery compartment. Then take a bit of sandpaper and go over the smooth metal surface inside where the batteries go (this will help the solder to adhere better). Then you'll need to solder in your wires and that part is done (also drill a small hole in the plastic piece that you've unscrewed to access the battery compartment. Once this is done you'll then need to attach the light cycle to the plastic piece, and then the final step would be to reinstall the plastic pieces with the light cycles on them and finally hook up the wiring harness.

Below is a picture that should help to see what everything looks like.

light_cycles.JPG

#17 6 years ago

Does anyone sell a premade kit for this mod?

As Hassanchop mentioned, you can buy a pre made kit, and another option if you want to save some money and do a bit yourself would be to just buy a wiring harness and do your own soldering and install. Below is a picture that Kimball Pinballs made up for me (cost is $60 plus shipping, as mentioned on his site):

http://www.kimballspinballs.com/products.html

light_cycle_harness.JPG

#18 6 years ago

Where can the light cycles be bought if we want to try and make these on our own?

Thanks

#19 6 years ago

The cycles can routinely be found on eBay. Do a quick search for Tron Halmark Light Cycle. Amazon still has them for $8.98 a piece.

Thanks,
www.HabosArcade.com

#20 6 years ago

One of my light cycles no longer is lit up. If I push down on the button on top, it will light up again. So, I tried to re-glue the button down, but it will not work.

What is the procedure to solder the connection together so the button does not have to be pushed down?

#21 6 years ago

Rob,

From what I've heard, the cycles are difficult to open without destroying them. I dont know if there is an alternative to gluing. Some one once tried experimenting and this was the result. Have you tried the toothpick method to hold down the button while the glue dries?

Quoted from Boatshoe:

Well, I don't know how you could ever replace anything in the light cycle. It is not meant to be opened. My first clu cycle did not light up. I missed the return deadline.
Well, now I can confirm that it does use LEDs.
1 light cycle was killed in the making of this post

IMAG1427.jpg

Thanks,
www.HabosArcade.com

#22 6 years ago

Where can i order the small connectors? I assume they are small enough to pass thru the hole in the PF? I dont have any that size and want to order the right ones. New to pinball mods looks like i should get a few of them.
Thanks

#23 6 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

One of my light cycles no longer is lit up. If I push down on the button on top, it will light up again. So, I tried to re-glue the button down, but it will not work.
What is the procedure to solder the connection together so the button does not have to be pushed down?

I had that problem to so what I ended up doing was taking the soldering iron and melting the button down, pressing the melted plastic downwards and letting it cool off so that the switch is always depressed.

#24 6 years ago
Quoted from Wickedbass:

Where can i order the small connectors? I assume they are small enough to pass thru the hole in the PF? I dont have any that size and want to order the right ones. New to pinball mods looks like i should get a few of them.
Thanks

http://www.greatplainselectronics.com/

#25 6 years ago
Quoted from Wickedbass:

Where can i order the small connectors? I assume they are small enough to pass thru the hole in the PF? I dont have any that size and want to order the right ones. New to pinball mods looks like i should get a few of them.
Thanks

I ended up making my own wiring harness for the light cycles and I bought the connectors and crimps from Great Plains Electronics. The small connectors are these guys:

Product ID: 03-06-1023 http://www.greatplainselectronics.com/category-84.asp
Product ID: 03-06-2023 http://www.greatplainselectronics.com/category-83.asp

The crimp contacts to go with them are:

Product ID: 02-06-1103 and Product ID: 02-06-2103

http://www.greatplainselectronics.com/Category-85.asp

#26 6 years ago

They are using the 2-pin and 3-ping Plugs and Receptacles in 0.093"

http://www.greatplainselectronics.com/Category-46.asp

You would need to order the Plugs, Receptacles, and Crimp Contacts (sockets and pins). The Crimper tool would also make it easier...

#27 6 years ago

The Molex connections come in 0.062" and 0.093". Stern uses the 0.093" if you want to stay with the "standard"

#28 6 years ago

If you're careful, you can crack them open and solder the switch. You have to start at the top side and break the glue joints that hold the trim pieces on. There are two wires connected to the switch, and you just short them.

#29 6 years ago

Great thanks guys, great site better than ordering form bobroberts.

I havent done much searching but any recommendations as to where to get power from other than having them powered all the time. I need the new PIG!

#30 6 years ago
Quoted from Mateui:

I had that problem to so what I ended up doing was taking the soldering iron and melting the button down, pressing the melted plastic downwards and letting it cool off so that the switch is always depressed.

I'm not sure that I understand how this works. How does melting the plastic button down keep it pressed downwards to the switch is always on?

#31 6 years ago

For mine, I put a dab of clear epoxy around the button. Then I put a piece of "waxy" paper (was the backing from a decal I had) on top of the epoxy filled button and squzeed the button down with a small clamp and let it dry overnight. It seems to be holding fine and the clear epoxy is not noticeable at all. Now I just need to wire it up.

2 months later
#32 6 years ago

Nice info

4 months later
#33 6 years ago

Alright, so I was soldering the wiring harness up to the cycles, and I soldered the negative wire to the spring on the Flynn cycle, plugged it in to the 5V molex, turned it on, and it didn't work. I'm supposed to solder the positive wire to the spring on the Flynn cycle I'm assuming.

Here are my questions:

Instead of desoldering the wire, is it possible to just cut and splice the wire farther down the line and switch it around? Or should I just unsolder and try again?

Also, when I plugged in the batteries to test them, I noticed they used opposite orientation of batteries to function. So which wire should I solder to the spring on the Clu cycle, the negative?

#34 6 years ago

Some notes on the installation of these

DO NOT GLUE OR MELT THE BUTTON

The covers on the back of the riders come off easily with a small flat blade screwdriver. I have down at least 6 of these bikes without breaking anything. First unscrew the ornament hook holder and then gently pry off the cover. Remove the switch and solder the two wires together.

Also the battery polarity is opposite on the small batteries to what you find on AA and AAA's. The positive is on the spring and the negative is on the flat plate. Cut a little notch in the battery cover to let the wires feed out.

Also I put the screws though the wheels so that I don't need a ton of spacers/washers to hold the bikes in place.

#35 6 years ago
Quoted from Mateui:

I had that problem to so what I ended up doing was taking the soldering iron and melting the button down, pressing the melted plastic downwards and letting it cool off so that the switch is always depressed.

As a follow up, I tried this. Didn't work.

I wound up having to buy a new Light Cycle. I did the super glue method again, and this time it has worked perfectly.

I am positive that the reason that I had a problem last time is that I used too much glue, which is a huge no-no with super glue.

#36 6 years ago

I think that they are too dim . I carefully split mine and took out the guts. I installed 2 cointaker flex and one cointaker frosted and all I can say is WOW. They look 100% better then the crap halmark leds.

#37 6 years ago
Quoted from kbliznick:

Also the battery polarity is opposite on the small batteries to what you find on AA and AAA's. The positive is on the spring and the negative is on the flat plate..

The image above says otherwise: http://www.cnypinballpleasure.com/tron.html

The Clu is positive spring and negative flat plate. So just solder the positive wire to the spring on Clu and the positive wire to the flat plate on Flynn?

#38 6 years ago
Quoted from hoby1:

I think that they are too dim . I carefully split mine and took out the guts. I installed 2 cointaker flex and one cointaker frosted and all I can say is WOW. They look 100% better then the crap halmark leds.

Do you have any pictures we could see? Sounds like a cool way to do it.

#39 6 years ago

Here us the yellow one. Much brighter

image.jpg

#40 6 years ago

Hoby1;

Did you use mounts or light sockets of just pull and solder the leads from the bulb? How about mounts.... just fab something to hold them in the approximate correct places?

Mike

#41 6 years ago

Used coin taker flex bulbs for the wheels. First I took off the 555 push in end and left the wires with the covering. Then I superglued the flex bulbs to the stock hole were the existing bulb inserted. Then I layed a 555 forested where the motor plastic goes.

After that I carefully connected the leads some i had to lengthen. I hot glued over the lead so they could not move. Then tested

It takes some skill and time to do a neat job that looks factory, when done but its worth it

#43 6 years ago
Quoted from hoby1:

I think that they are too dim . I carefully split mine and took out the guts. I installed 2 cointaker flex and one cointaker frosted and all I can say is WOW. They look 100% better then the crap halmark leds.

hoby1, how did you "carefully split them" ??

So now each cycle has 3x 555 connections/LEDs in them ??

#44 6 years ago
Quoted from hoby1:

I think that they are too dim . I carefully split mine and took out the guts. I installed 2 cointaker flex and one cointaker frosted and all I can say is WOW. They look 100% better then the crap halmark leds.

Hoby can you post some pictures of the bulb mod you did on them? I've been thinking along these lines so I can eliminate the cycle light burn outs which necessitates buying new cycles every year..TIA

#45 6 years ago

I dont have any pics if me doing this any it is VERY difficult to split the cycles without trashing them. I have done two sets one for myself and one for Dmusket

First carefully remove the driver as stated before. You may pop off any arm or a hand or foot pedal no big deal just neatly glue back on.

I use new exacto knife blade and I keep scoring around the entire edge of the cycle. MAKE SURE YOU STAY IN THE SEEM Using a small flat blade screwdiver to very lightly pry them apart. YOU MUST BE VERY PATIENT AND CAREFUL . This is not easy by no means but can be done. Take your time, the cleaner you split the case the easier fit and finish will be when reassembling.

Once apart I remove the battery holder and all wiring. Then I refit the cycle back together and file any edges for a tight fit. You may have some gaps most likely under where the driver sits. No big deal as it can be filled in and touched up.

From memory I think I had to file the holes flat where the flex bulbs face gets glued face front to each wheel. Remember that each led has a + and - side when installing and all three must be on the same polarity.

As stated before, flex bulbs must be take out of its holder before mounting to each wheel. The 555 frosted only needs the part that pushes into the socket taken off.

Once the wheel leds have been glued and have completely dried you can start mounting the motor led. This one just get installed by mounting with a tack of hot glue. I ran all of the + to the top part of the cycle and all of the - towards the bottom .

Now its time to connect all the leads so no wires can be seen through the motor windows and then tested for fuction.

Once I knew that they all work I used hot glue and carefully put glue over all leds so the could not move and short. Once again be neat so nothing can be seen through the windows and look like ASS.

Reassemble the cycles with super glue. Fill gaps ( If any ) and retouch with gloss black on seam. If done correctly will need little or none.

Remount driver and attach a small standoff to the bottom of the cycle . you will have to file the standoff so the cycle will sit level. Mount to plastic and wire to game .I did the inserts

It may take a few hours but my cycles have been bright and working perfectly 8 months after the originals burned out

#46 6 years ago

Here is the blue one installed with cointakers

image.jpg

1 week later
#47 6 years ago

Some notes on the installation of these
DO NOT GLUE OR MELT THE BUTTON
The covers on the back of the riders come off easily with a small flat blade screwdriver. I have down at least 6 of these bikes without breaking anything. First unscrew the ornament hook holder and then gently pry off the cover. Remove the switch and solder the two wires together.
Also the battery polarity is opposite on the small batteries to what you find on AA and AAA's. The positive is on the spring and the negative is on the flat plate. Cut a little notch in the battery cover to let the wires feed out.
Also I put the screws though the wheels so that I don't need a ton of spacers/washers to hold the bikes in place.

Wish I would have saw this before I did mine- I ended up with one that turned itself off after 5 mins and another that wouldn't come on after gluing. Nevermind though, I split the top off the bikes anyway and hotwired them. SOOOOOOO much better and SOOOOO much cleaner. Only way to do it. Just take your time, especially on the Clu bike. Note, I didn't do anything but snap the cover back on. If it falls off I'll think about gluing. Some pics below.

picture020.jpg picture019.jpg picture021.jpg

#48 6 years ago

Awesome, thanks for the tip! Just disassembled a CLU bike and it was pretty easy.

3 weeks later
#49 6 years ago

Trying to install these now. Little confused on mounting them . . . do I glue them to mount them? How best to mount them? Thanks in advance.

1 week later
#50 6 years ago

A little late -- but I went with an approach that was fully reversible. I just drilled a small pilot hole into the wheel and used the existing screw. For the other wheel I used some of that putty stuff that comes up. Various names for it and I can't remember it offhand.

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