(Topic ID: 231157)

X-Files: Ball getting stuck in filing cabinet


By SkyKing2301

5 months ago



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  • 5 posts
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  • Latest reply 4 months ago by SkyKing2301
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#1 5 months ago

Hey folks! I recently picked up an X-Files and it has an annoying recurring issue: About 25% of shots into the filing cabinet get hung up at the bottom and don't enter the subway. Of course, when the happens, I have to wait for a ball search -- and naturally, when the filing cabinet moves up during the ball search, the ball then gets dumped into the subway and play continues on. (Nuisance aside, this also does affect gameplay if there's a timed shot in the cabinet, which then doesn't register.)

I played until it happened again so I could get some photos, and you can see the ball stuck between the cabinet and then subway. It looks to me like my cabinet is broken in this area; perhaps if the thick piece of cabinet were present there, it might not get trapped.

20181208_155923 (resized).jpg

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I wonder if any of you have run into this before, and/or what your suggested fix is. I think my options here might be:
1) Build a shim/"platform" that could attach at those two screws to fill the "gap" where the cabinet piece used to be
2) Move up the angled piece at the bottom of the cabinet (don't know if its holes are slotted perhaps?)
3) Move/adjust the cabinet mechanism higher (though this might make the 2nd drawer now be in the way of the ball entering the cabinet)
4) Adjust the position of the subway

I think the shim is probably the best option, but I don't really want to mess with anything until I polled you more-experienced folks. Any of you ever run into this? What was your fix?

#2 5 months ago
Quoted from SkyKing2301:

Hey folks! I recently picked up an X-Files and it has an annoying recurring issue: About 25% of shots into the filing cabinet get hung up at the bottom and don't enter the subway. Of course, when the happens, I have to wait for a ball search -- and naturally, when the filing cabinet moves up during the ball search, the ball then gets dumped into the subway and play continues on. (Nuisance aside, this also does affect gameplay if there's a timed shot in the cabinet, which then doesn't register.)
I played until it happened again so I could get some photos, and you can see the ball stuck between the cabinet and then subway. It looks to me like my cabinet is broken in this area; perhaps if the thick piece of cabinet were present there, it might not get trapped.
[quoted image]
[quoted image]
I wonder if any of you have run into this before, and/or what your suggested fix is. I think my options here might be:
1) Build a shim/"platform" that could attach at those two screws to fill the "gap" where the cabinet piece used to be
2) Move up the angled piece at the bottom of the cabinet (don't know if its holes are slotted perhaps?)
3) Move/adjust the cabinet mechanism higher (though this might make the 2nd drawer now be in the way of the ball entering the cabinet)
4) Adjust the position of the subway
I think the shim is probably the best option, but I don't really want to mess with anything until I polled you more-experienced folks. Any of you ever run into this? What was your fix?

I like your shim idea. Perhaps try it first by sticking a piece of plastic there with some hot glue. In that way if it doesn’t work, you can easily remove it. My second thought was to lower the subway slightly with a couple of washers if possible. But the crack may still create hangups.

2 weeks later
#3 4 months ago

Alright, so here's what I did to fix it. I've had 100% success rate over about 10 games since the fix, including some manual testing, so I think it's good to go. Pics at the end of this post.

First, I removed the cabinet & motor assembly from the game. For anyone who hasn't done this, it's three wire connectors and a handful of screws mounting the assembly to the bottom of the playfield. Accessing these screws was challenging, which is probably why there were only three installed out of six or seven holes, lol.

The cabinet material is about 1/2 cm thick, so I looked around in my scrap materials -- and found an L-shaped aluminum piece that I believe came from a screen door. The short leg -- what would be the 'simulated cabinet edge surface' -- measured almost exactly 1/2 cm, and the long leg was fairly thin, so it'd be easy to trim, drill, and attach.

I cut/shaped the piece accordingly and measured & drilled the holes for the screws. (There were no nuts for those screws, plus two screws on the other side holding the internal "down-ramp" in place, so it was safe to pull the two screws out.) I also put a piece of duct tape along the top surface to make it smoother. Then I just slid it into place, reinstalled the screws (no thread length concern since the aluminum was very thin), reinstalled everything back in the machine and it's good to go! There's still a sizable gap there but no more than what was there before it broke. As I described, it's been 100% ever since! Pics below; I'll mark this as solved unless problems pop back up!

Broken cabinet, view 1:
broken cabinet

Broken cabinet, view 2:
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Aluminum channel drilled & fit, view 1:
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Aluminum channel drilled & fit, view 2:
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Aluminum channel drilled & fit, view 3:
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Duct tape added to smooth the top, & final install, view 1:
20181223_082411 (resized).jpg

Duct tape added to smooth the top, & final install, view 2:
20181223_115027 (resized).png

#4 4 months ago

Nice job!

#5 4 months ago

Thanks! Put a bunch more games on it over the last two days and it's still at 100% success rate. I'd say that did it!

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