Upgrading eddy/proximity sensors on Bally/WMS games (Theater of Magic)

Recently I decided to replace the trunk eddy sensor on Theater of Magic with something more reliable than the original Bally/Williams proximity sensors. They are prone to “drifting” and will need regular adjustment. There’s a company that makes an auto-adjusting board that I wanted to try out, so here is my video showing the installation of that new board. This should make the game a little bit more reliable.

Dignosing and fixing a dead WPC MPU board (with RAM upgrade)

In this video series, I am working on a client’s “Dr. Who” pinball machine that wouldn’t boot up. It was just dead. None of the diagnostic LED blinks would blink on the WPC-89 MPU board, so I go over the process of how to identify and isolate the problem, then I upgrade the board with NVRAM (non-volatile memory) so that it will never need batteries again.

“Hey Professor!” First Look: Gilligan’s Island

Here’s the first of another multi-part series of stories on some recent game pick ups.   Come look with me as I discover new pinball machines in the wild and take them back to the lair to examine and restore! This was from a lot of about five games I picked up from a company that was going out of business. This was the main game I wanted but I had to get the entire package. Boo hoo. 😉

The Great Switch Matrix Wild Goose Chase!

Here are six videos of an 8 part series of clips I shot this past week while working on restoring a Bally Theatre of Magic game.

What’s interesting about this series is you can really follow along with me as I fumble around trying to figure out what’s wrong. This is an all too common path many enthusiasts take which often leads them back to the beginning of the trail and emphasizes a number of common troubleshooting principals.

At this point, I have a working game except for two minor glitches with switches: An opto in the ball trough is not working, and it’s causing the game to kick balls into the shooter lane when powered up, and the EOS switches on the flippers are not being registered by the MPU. The solution to both of these issues was finally found and may or may not be what you expect. Watch the series to find out!

Pinball Flipper Tune-Up: replacing bushings

If you have a wobbly-feeling pinball flipper, there’s a good chance the bushing is either worn or broken. In this two-part video I go over how to remove the flipper assembly and replace the bushings so you can get nice, snappy, flipper action.

This general technique applies to most flipper assemblies with only a few minor detail changes. Some bushings were screwed into the flipper assembly (especially with Gottliebs) and others were connect to the flipper assembly plates themselves (as in later WPC games).

Repair, don’t replace that broken pinball coil!

Pinball coils (aka solenoids) are windings of insulated copper wire that create electromagnets that make things move on the playfield. If you have a coil that is no longer working, and doesn’t have any obvious signs it has “melted down”, there’s a very good chance you can repair it instead of replacing it. In this video I go over how this is typically done. This works on all types of pinball machines from the EMs to Stern, Bally, Williams, etc.