(Topic ID: 185666)

Xenon Backbox Crack


By chippe01

2 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 14 posts
  • 6 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 2 years ago by jibmums
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders

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#1 2 years ago

I just noticed this when I opened the backbox to make some game adjustments, there is a long crack along the bottom, where the back panel and bottom panel meet. How do I secure this?

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#2 2 years ago

Does it extend through the plywood or is it just in that top piece of veneer?

#3 2 years ago

It's caused by all the weight of the backbox door. Not sure if it was from the factory or a previous owner but when I bought mine it had some t-shaped brackets screwed to the back of the box to reinforce it.

Others may have a different idea but I would remove the backbox and wood glue the crack. If you keep the door shut to keep pressure off the backbox you might be ok. If not then consider the reinforcing brackets.

#4 2 years ago
Quoted from Atari_Daze:

Does it extend through the plywood or is it just in that top piece of veneer?

I didn't think to look. Will have to figure that out without (hopefully) taking off the back box.

#5 2 years ago

tommy-player : I was thinking of brackets from the cabinet to the back panel of the backbox.

#6 2 years ago

Well, I looked at the crack and lifted up that top layer, and the crack is only in the top layer. I should be ok, correct?

#7 2 years ago

I think you are fine, if it was all the way through, I'd worry and attempt to make repairs.

#8 2 years ago

You can see the brackets in the attached pic. If you look close you can see how the weight of the door began separating the horizontal base from the lower section.

I ended up wood glueing the crack and using a couple of wood vices to clamp it till dry. I also drilled in a number of long wood screws in vertically to reinforce the seam.

Up to you but the heavy door weight will keep causing stress till you address it. I say bite the bullet now before it gets worse.

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#9 2 years ago

That infinity back glass, 2 sheets of glass instead of one, really adds to the weight and places a huge strain on the backbox when open. My backbox has separated at the corner with the strain and is now screwed back together. Whenever I open my Xenon I prop the backbox door onto the side rail so that the door is supported and not just hanging there straining the backbox.

#10 2 years ago

Hi Tommy, my situation is different, its the actual backbox that has a crack where the bottom panel meets the back panel, but it's only on the first thin layer of wood.

#11 2 years ago

Anyone that says, "don't worry about it" is completely incorrect.
"Fix it properly now, or pay later."

Your backbox bottom veneer is cracked.
You need to fix this properly or over time it will get a LOT worse.
Ignore the problem and you may get a nasty surpise at some point when you open the backbox.
Those double bacglasses and frame are HEAVY especially when swinging.

Wood glue is not enough either.

You need to reinforce the backbox with an extension wood top plate at the back of the backbox after you repair the crack with wood glue and clamps.

Remove the backbox from the game.
Full the crack with wood glue.
Clamp it between the access cabinet hole and backside.
Make a wood top plate out of at least 3/4" plywood.
Drill the bolt holes.
Wood glue it down, butted up against the backbox.
Secure with additional wood screws FROM THE BOTTOM OF THE BACKBOX.
Avoid the original crack.
Four should be sufficient.
Drill the holes, first.
You do not to split your previous efforts.
Use two slightly longer lag bolts for installation.
Shim with additional washers as necessary.
Be mindful of the PCBs with additional height.

Project complete, damage arrested, and weight is now properly supported when opening the backbox.
While you are it, check for lower cabinet damage, and make sure your cabinet T-nuts are solid, front and back.

If you have lower cabinet cracks, install a reverse bottom plate "box" from the inside to reinforce the entire section to "bulletproof".
Keep in mind you can use larger fender washers to distribute weight on the bolts.

Some people even install releasable latches on the backside of the backbox to give it even more strength.
One is required on each end, not one in the middle.
Preferably something that does not look like a backyard gate door latch for aesthetics.

Best of fortune.

#12 2 years ago

Space Invaders has the same heavy double-backglass setup. When I open the backbox, I place a cardboard box, cushion, or whatever's handy, on the playfield glass & siderail and under the bottom of the backglass door to take the weight of the door off of the backbox floor & the neck of the cabinet. Easier to prevent a problem than have to fix it.

#13 2 years ago
Quoted from jibmums:

Space Invaders has the same heavy double-backglass setup. When I open the backbox, I place a cardboard box, cushion, or whatever's handy, on the playfield glass & siderail and under the bottom of the backglass door to take the weight of the door off of the backbox floor & the neck of the cabinet. Easier to prevent a problem than have to fix it.

Quite a few games have this "infinity" double glass style.
Ballys such as Vector and Gottliebs, such as BH, MGoW, and Volcano.
This list is quite extensive and very common, and the problem is synonymous.
Two sheets of tempered glass is heavy, and easily smashed.

The weight is just too much for the lag bolts to handle after 35+ years.
A wedge is good (wood block), reinforcement is better, because some are hard to "swing lift" when opening and the block can get in the way. Without reinforcement you still have to hold back the backbox with one hand while you open with the other to take the strain off, before you put in the block. If a person slips, the backbox gets damaged over time.

#14 2 years ago

Well aware. My Space Invaders' neck was pulling up from the cabinet, so the first thing I did was screw a series of L-brackets inside, where the back hits the neck. Inside, because I hate the look of metal bracketry added to the outside of the cab, even if it is in the back. It's rock-solid now but I still brace the open door with a box so it stays that way.

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