Building replacement LED displays (from a kit)

This is a fun series of videos of me trying something new. Let’s replace the old gas plasma displays in a Bally 35 solid state pinball machine with new low-voltage LED displays. This reduces the power consumption of the pinball machine and cuts out the high power portion of the power supply board for the display – a whole area we don’t have to worry about any more by switching over to LEDs. The price for this as a kit is quite reasonable (and cheaper than replacing them with used displays usually). But it takes some time and skill to populate your own circuit boards. I’m going to give it a try. Let’s see how it goes!

Here is a time lapse of me doing the lion’s share of the board work:

And here’s the finished product!

All about connectors: Molex, sizes, tools, pins and crimping

Pinball machines (as well as other arcade games) use a wide variety of wires and connectors. The most popular brand of connectors is called “Molex” which is a specific maker, but also a generic term often referred to as the plug/un-plug style connectors you will find on everything from power supply wiring to board connectors.

In this video, I go over the most common sizes and types of connectors you’re likely to find, what tools are available and how to rebuild and re-pin these connectors.

Installing a dollar bill acceptor (DBA) in a pinball machine

This is a short video demonstrating how to add a DBA (dollar bill acceptor) to a new Stern game (in this case, Jurassic Park). The older Stern games came with the cable necessary but now they’re not bundling them. I take a cable from Iron Maiden, along with a DBA I pulled from Wizard of Oz, and install it in Jurassic Park before I put the game on location.

Rebuilding pinball flipper assembly (Gottlieb System 3)

Here are two videos of me completely rebuilding the flippers and flipper assembly on a Gottlieb System 3 pinball machine (Waterworld) – many of this information will basically pertain to most flipper systems on other machines like Bally and WMS, Stern, etc. I go through the whole process of replacing all the major wear parts on the flipper assembly even including the base plate and end-of-stroke switches.

Here’s part 2 (sorry I rarely edit these videos so sometimes my camera breaks it into separate files)

Part 3

If the above is too slow, check out this time-lapse of rebuilding the flipper:

Rebuilding a Gottlieb VUK (vertical up kicker)

As work continues restoring this Gottlieb system 3 pinball machine, “Waterworld”, I rebuild the broken VUK (vertical up-kicker). This is from a series of videos where I rebuild a number of the core components on this game that’s been on location for probably more than a decade.