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.
I had planned for this to be the final update on the Whirlwind repair & service, but before I give my focus to testing the game, there were two more presentation things to look at first. One of the final items to address on Whirlwind is the coin door. I had mentioned in previous updates I was going to look at it, but kept putting it off. No longer though. When dropping the machine off, the owner asked me to give the coin door a face lift. He wanted the rivets removed and the holes filled from the coin entry housing. No problem, can do. I wanted to go a little bit further though and replace the pricing plates with something nicer and also replace the two missing bolts from the coin door.
Since the playfield swap, Pinbot has been running really well and been a joy to play. Recently though, an error appeared when the machine was switched on. The game detected there were errors with 3 of the switches, and reported them during the start up sequence. They are reported as “switch adjust” errors and the knocker fires off 4 – 5 times for each one. It’s an obnoxious sound, and certainly gets your attention that there is an error. The game reported that there was an error with switches 35, 36 and 37.
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.
First on the agenda for this update was cleaning the underside of the red missile inserts and replacing their old bulbs. All 28 of them. Yes, that’s as exciting as it sounds…. Each row of 7 lamps are attached to a bank which can be unscrewed allowing better better access to the bulbs. But because each bank is wired to the next, it’s fiddly to get the bulbs in and out of. All the existing bulbs are #44’s. These will be replaced with #47’s.