Pinball

Documenting my adventures into pinball repair and restoration

The Apollo 13 overhaul has continued over the last couple of weeks. Sometimes progress can feel like slow going, but it’s surprising how quickly time gets sucked up as you work through sections of a machine. Plus, it’s getting cold at night time, so working on games once the sun has gone down is getting tougher. The previous update was heavily focused on the apron area of the playfield. Shifting my attention 30cm higher up the playfield, this update will be focusing on the next lot of assemblies – so things like the flippers, up post (ball save), ball return VUK and sling shots. Technically the VUK lives under the apron area, but i’ll ignore that fact for the sake of including it in this update instead of the last one 🙂 I also want to get the CPU controlled lamps switched over to LED’s as the kit arrived. So let’s get started and begin removing some parts!

Apollo 13 Pinball Repair
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Time to wrap things up on Dr Who! First thing for this update is to clean up the two ramps, so I’ll start with the smaller one. The ramp has protection at its entrance which has prevented any damage over the years. The decals are pealing a bit along the side, but the ramp is otherwise in great condition (if you look past the filth).

Dr Who Pinball Repair
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Free time & empty space. Who needs it? Well, I do.. but I enjoy working on pinball machines too, so those things have to wait. I didn’t get to enjoy 5 minutes of free space this time before the next game arrived for me to work on. In fact, I had a small shuffle around to create some extra space for this additional machine to work on. The freshly cleared area was instantly filled with a beautiful Apollo 13 from SEGA. I say beautiful because the condition is actually really good, with only a few small spots that need addressing. It’s Australian delivered and spent most of it’s life in a home. The game was released towards the end of 1995 and has so many balls (13) it needs two troughs to store them all. You’re up for a slab of beer every time you need to replace the set. That’s something to think about 😉 The game arrives with one known issue (sound not working), which will be my first item to address before I begin working my way through the game like I normally do. Although the game is reasonably clean on top, it looks like it hasn’t been given a good service in a long time (if ever) as there is a nice build up of black coil dust across all the assemblies below the playfield. I’ll be going through cleaning each one and replacing parts where necessary.

Apollo 13 Pinball Repair
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Progress on Dr Who has continued quite well over the last couple of weeks and I’m now down to the final section of playfield. This update will be focusing on the remaining assemblies at the top of the playfield – the pop bumpers and the mini playfield. My plan is to strip and clean the top playfield area (including the pop bumpers) and then move onto the mini playfield. The area is quite filthy, but nothing a good clean won’t sort out. Time to get started.

Dr Who Pinball Repair
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After the initial hold up (and frustration) with the board issues on Dr Who, progress has been moving along smoothly. Aside from that slow start, the game has been enjoyable to work on. In this update I’ll be focusing on the middle section of the playfield. In terms of assemblies, this area has the Tardis ball popper on the right, with the left side home to the upper flipper and trap door assemblies. The popper was mentioned in a previous update as I had to replace the optics which had been cut out. This time I’ll be removing the whole assembly for a service. As usual, all plastics, targets and posts will be removed for cleaning and the playfield will also receive a clean. I’ll need to remove the ramps for this part, and won’t be putting them back on until the end. Time to get started and I’ll begin with the right side.

Dr Who Pinball Repair
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