(Topic ID: 220287)

X-Files led swap a PITA!!

By pindoc1

10 months ago

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  • 20 posts
  • 11 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 10 months ago by PoMC
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#1 10 months ago

I think that there is a special place in Hell for the engineers who put together the X-Files playfield. I am in the process of swapping out the bulbs for led's. You have to take apart more than half the playfield just to replace a few light bulbs. I saved the GI for last. I had noticed that most of the GI sockets were accessible from below the playfield and the ones I saw were just held in with screws. So I stupidly put the upper playfield back together so I could more easily lift and lower the playfield during the swap out. Then I find out that most of the GI sockets are stapled to the bottom of the playfield like some 1979 Bally game. So now I have to take the playfield apart again. ARRRGH!! Special place in Hell!! There is no excuse for making a game so difficult to service! No wonder so many of these games on location have half their bulbs burnt out.

#2 10 months ago

Good thing you're putting in LEDs... you'll never have to do this again!

#3 10 months ago

Easiest AND best solution for lighting up Segas instead of tearing down to replace the GI bulbs - DIY stadium style lighting. Unless you need to tear down the playfield to shop it out, then best to leave the normal GI bulbs in and light the playfield evenly with stadium LED lights.

Recently made a set of lights for Twister and the game looks super.

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#4 10 months ago

The Sega games are rough. I just did a Baywatch and it was a pain too. Maybe the worst one i have taken apart yet. There was an order to assembling the layers of ramps and if you get it wrong you gotta take stuff back off. In hindsight i wish i would have ripped out the staples and gotten the bulbs from the underneath, but did give me a chance to clean under the layers of ramps which hadn't been gotten to in nearly 10 years since i first shopped it out.

#5 10 months ago

My Data East LAH has one incandescent left in it because to change that one essentially means stripping out 3/4 of the playfield. non of the GI's are accessible from under the playfield.

#6 10 months ago

X-Files was my first and so far only LED conversion. Good to know that most pins are easier. I did the insert lights a little bit at a time over a series of several nights. I remember the ones under the subway being a particular pain because I couldn’t get the subway out without substantially loosening the wiring harness, so I had to kind of cram my hands under it. As for the GI, I too did it from the top, but I was doing a full tear down and cleaning anyway. That alone took about 7-8 hours. The only bulbs that are still incandescent are the ones in the alien tube because they are just in the most inaccessible looking location I can imagine. If one goes out, I’ll finally tackle it, but I really have no desire to.

#7 10 months ago

When I did our X-Files I ended up cleaning all the ramps and plastics... also did a rubber kit too to make the *pain* worth it.

#8 10 months ago

hope you are doing them in all white, because it would suck if you had to do them all over again.

#9 10 months ago

I have a kit from CoinTakers. Most of the GI is white except those in the flipper return lanes which are purple. Those were the easy ones I did last night. The purple does make that awful baby blue on those plastics look much better.
I have the Pin Stadium lights for the game and that's what prompted me to do the led conversion. I was tempted to leave the GI incandescent but have decided to go for it. All of the controlled lamps and flashers are done. I am going to try to get the ramps completely off first so I am not fighting with flipping them up and down. I hope all of the wires to the switches and lamps on the ramps have connectors on them.

#10 10 months ago
Quoted from pindoc1:

I hope all of the wires to the switches and lamps on the ramps have connectors on them.

I’m almost positive they do. I didn’t do any desoldering or soldering when I removed them.

#11 10 months ago

Youll need those "instant LEDs"...Just a snap of your fingers, and all the bulbs are changed!!

Kidding....I seriously feel your pain!

#12 10 months ago
Quoted from Nokoro:

I’m almost positive they do. I didn’t do any desoldering or soldering when I removed them.

they did on baywatch. Most where well packed into the wire harness and secured with zippy ties. I had to cut more than a few zippy ties i probably replaced last time i shopped it out.

#13 10 months ago

They all have connectors on them. I got them disconnected and in process of unscrewing everything but life is getting in the way of a hobby. Hope to get back to it soon before I forget where everything goes. I did take pictures and label all the connectors with a Sharpy pen.

#14 10 months ago

Got it done! Still waiting on the smaller bulbs for the launch button and coin return buttons plus a replacement for the launch button mech that I broke.
Thanks for the help and suggestions.

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#15 10 months ago

pindoc1 - worth the effort, it looks amazing.

#16 10 months ago

Nice job! X Files looks great with LEDs. When I got the pin, it had all old incandescent bulbs in it, and each insert and bulb had a nice coating of black coil dust. I didn’t even know the inserts were different colors until I cleaned them. After putting all color matching LEDs in, the game took on a whole new life.

#17 10 months ago
Quoted from pindoc1:

Got it done! Still waiting on the smaller bulbs for the launch button and coin return buttons plus a replacement for the launch button mech that I broke.
Thanks for the help and suggestions.

They have smaller bulbs that will fit in the coin and start buttons? Where do you find them?

#18 10 months ago

LED's done perfect. Great work.Glad you resisted the urge to do purple or green. This game you can actually play.....if you want to.

#19 10 months ago

CoinTakers has what are call button led's that have a smaller head on them that will fit into the launch, start or coin return areas. In the kit i got from them, they were listed but not in there and I made the mistake of trying to force a regular led into the launch button and broke the switch. I should have known better. Duh! I have an email into Cointakers to send me these specialized bulbs that were supposed to be included in the kit and a new switch on order. You can also get them individually at Pinball Life where I am getting my new switch.

Thanks for all the positive feedback. I have been real happy with CoinTakers. Just takes some "tweaking". I prefer the cold white (rather than the warm white) premiums and the intense blues rather than the baby blue cyan. Just my personal preference. They have accommodated these preferences when they make up the kits. Customer service has been really good.

Just started working on the swap out on my Revenge From Mars. Sorted the bulbs and about to dive in.

#20 10 months ago

Looks crisp and clean! Glad to see sparkly, well light, ramps that aren't muddied with green and purple.

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