With four weeks off over the Christmas break, it is the perfect opportunity to continue with the overhaul of my Bride of Pinbot 2.0. The plan was to try and do the next few phases of the overhaul in smaller chunks, avoiding the downside of having the game off line for long periods. But this update turned out to be much bigger than expected and has been split into two updates. This happened mainly because getting the top layers off the playfield was a pain and having to put them back on only to remove a few days later for the next phase would create a whole heap of extra work. So once I realised I was in up to my elbows, I decided to keep going. Starting off small though, the first assembly on my hit list for this update is the shooter rod.
A good way to continue working on pinball machines (without going broke buying them), is to work on other peoples machines and bestow to them the same love I give mine (the machines that is, not the owners..). I’m always on the look out for a new Pinball project to work on as I love giving them a new lease on life, but pickings have been slim lately. The universe has other ideas though and through a chance message, I was asked if I could work on some machines that needed a bit of TLC, with Whirlwind being first on the list. How could I refuse? 🙂 This isn’t a restore but also not a simple service either. I’ll be doing my usual rebuilding and cleaning of all assemblies, along with fixing any game play issues and giving the machine a bit of a face lift along the way. I don’t have plans to do any board work and the owner has a few requests on specific things he wants addressed, which i’ll be following. Whirlwind is a great game and I’m very excited to be working on it. Once complete, it’s going to be hard to let the owner take it home.
My holiday project continues to move forward, although not quite as fast as I had originally planned. First thing to do after my previous update was to get the second ramp built. This was an exact copy of the first, so I won’t go through the details and photos again as it’s all the same. In the end though, I now have two ramps ready to roll.
My planned “big project” for these Christmas holidays was to be the playfield swap on Pinbot. That’s been put aside for now to focus on another project I’ve been wanting to do for a long time – build my own skate ramp for use in the backyard. Around 7 or 8 years ago I would spend a lot of time going to different skate parts and spots around Melbourne with my inline skates. I always dreamed of having my own ramp or ledge to skate on. Now I have kids and they are of an age where skateboarding (and rollerblading) is in their scope of interest – so it’s a great excuse to build the ramp I always wanted. My kids will love it and I’ll love it even more. I had a few reminders this year of how short life is, so enough putting it off – time to build a ramp and enjoy it. I started out by doing some research into just what sort of ramp I’d like to have and found plans for this:
Two switch issue have crept into Pinbot over the last few months and I wanted to take a look at them. The first relates to the ramp switch, which lets the game know if the ramp is up or down. When the ramp is down, the switch should be activated. There are two coils which control the state of the ramp and if the switch is in the wrong state, the game will continually try and activate a coil. This was the behavior I was seeing. The ramp would be down, but the coil would continue to fire.