It’s time to get into some heavy duty cleaning on Baywatch. The only way to do that, is get everything off the playfield so I have unrestricted access to the lot. People can underestimate how long this process takes, especially on DMD era machines. Pulling a playfield down can be quick, but cleaning everything and getting it all back on (in the correct layout and order) takes up more time than you expect. As always, it’s best to take a lot of photos along the way with this process. I prefer to do the playfield areas in smaller batches, but due to the number of ramps and rails, it isn’t possible here. The lower playfield area and apron have been dealt with in previous updates, so now I have the top two thirds to contend with. Although the machine is dirty, it’s going to clean up nicely.
Time for another progress update on the Whirlwind repair & service I’m currently carrying out. This time I’m looking at the apron and all the assemblies contained within. I managed to work through this area pretty quickly, which is why this update is so soon after the last one. I forgot to take a photo of the apron before starting, so the one shown below is from the day the machine was dropped off to me (you’ll notice the old flippers, rubber, etc which were taken care of in the last update). The apron itself is in really good condition. The paint is mostly unscratched and no rust showing or paint flaking. There is an old operator sticker that needs to come off on the left side and some old white sticker on the right which also needs to be removed. It’s a bit dirty, but with a clean, I think it’s going to come up really nice.
With the sound issue issue covered, and the ball serve issue to look at, I wanted a bit of a break from problem solving to exploring the different assemblies on the machine and giving them a clean. The problem was – where do I begin? I want to cover the entire machine. In the end I figured I start from the bottom of the play field and work my way up.
So to begin with, I’d remove the apron and see what lurks below.
The apron on these early Bally machines are secured by two small metal brackets at the front and two screws at the back. The last person to work on the machine didn’t secure the apron to the brackets at the front and as a result it was lose (which isn’t good when you go to lift the play field by it…)
I have to say the two screws at the back don’t feel like the most sturdy attachment for the apron. I may be that due to age, it has just seen better days – but I don’t trust lifting the play field via the apron like I do on my Nugent and Space Orbit machines..