Welcome back to Episode 3. I wanted to get a video update on some minor progress that I’ve made on the machine. Two big gains is getting the head mounts repaired on the cabinet so that we could actually mount the head, and initial testing of the power supply/board, with general illumination appearing to come alive.
The one take-away from this session is that the voltage coming off the power board going to the CPU does not appear to be where it needs to be, which means I need to go back to the power board and check rectifiers and diodes.
Please understand that as with many of you, I only get to spend small amounts of time on my pet projects like this. As such, I’m afraid the episodes might not be the most compelling or lengthy, but hopefully that will inspire you to take the 5 – 10 minutes and just check out what I’m doing as mundane as it may seem.
In this episode, we tackle cleaning out the base of the cabinet. Petrified mud nests, mummified mouse and a plethora of quarters. I mean, a lot of quarters. I was surprised, first of all, that the money box was still inside the machine. This is the first machine I’ve purchased in which it was still in place. Unfortunately for me, the mouse had apparently decided that George Washington’s metallic presence was a great place to go to the bathroom. So, before we get to count our treasure, old George needs to have a good bath.
I also hit a lot of the plastics with some rubbing alcohol to see what yuck I could pull off. It wasn’t cutting it, so we removed all of the ones we could, there is one that is fused with a rusted screw into the playfield. I’ll probably have to drill out the screen to free it. Initial inspection of the rubber bumpers indicate that they could be salvaged, but the cost to replace all of them with new ones is so minor, I’m just going to toss them since they have yellowed so much from the environment they’ve been left in.
I hope you enjoy the progress. Little steps and we can possibly get this beast back on its feet.
Welcome to this first of a series of blog posts which will hopefully document my attempts at resurrecting this corpse of a pinball machine that I purchased recently at an auction. During the COVID years, lucked into a 1978 Bally Harlem Globetrotter pinball machine that needed some work. I decided to take the chance and started my adventure down the road to pinball machine restoration. It was a lot of fun and I learned a lot. My love the era and the machines has grown as has my respect for what goes into the designs.
This machine is in much worse shape than that one or the 1991 Data East Phantom of the Opera machine which I purchased less than a year ago. While neither of those machines were functioning, they had not sustained the kind of neglect and damage that my current project has endured. The good news is, its one of the highest produced machines in existence, which should translate into easy access to parts. The bad news is, I’m going to need a lot of them and the superficial damage to the cabinet and playfield may well prevent it from ever landing in someone’s collection.
In this first episode, I basically document the total condition of the machine as I have received it from the auction site and my initial observations of the machine. The one glimmer of hope that I have is that the back box is not in bad shape and the electronics look to be fairly solid. I will need to go over each board and verify key solder points and chips connections, but we have at least a 30-40% chance of powering up with some basic TLC.
Enjoy the video. Please let me know what you think.