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Flight 2000 Restoration

Discussion in 'Projects & Mods' started by Completist, Mar 28, 2017.

  1. Completist

    Completist New Member

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    About to embark on my first pin restoration. Started with a project pin with intentions of cleaning it up / shop job / get it working 100%. Mostly i just wanted to gain all the necessary skills to be able to maintain these as i built my collection. But as i went through it and searched for parts I decided to do a full on restore. Stumbled across a beautiful CPR playfield which sealed the deal. Was just trying to find the original pop bumber caps (repros currently available i was not happy with). Infact it didnt even have stern pop bumper assemblies on it which kinda bothered me. Maybe i am a purist lol.

    Actually i now have two F2k's (found a second project to help with parts etc - and original pop bumpers yay). So i'll have a great reference for doing a swap - is that cheating? What about scoring a spare, mostly populated playfield in great shape other than very dirty? My goal is to use as many original parts (with obvious exception of the repro playfield). When done i hope to have one CQ machine (to the best of my ability) and a second thats clean, looks good and plays great which i'll sell.

    Blah, blah, blah. Anyway so i'll post progress, pics, etc for those interested. So far i've managed to get the one game functioning 100%. Figured that was a good place to start so i know if something isnt working post swap it was something i did, not a preexisting problem. Main issue when i started was i had sounds but no talky - a bummer for Stern's first pin with speech. Having that spare VSU-100 board helped troubleshoot (ended up being the speech board). Now i have to get the other one working, will start with replacing caps and go from there.

    So finally on to my questions...

    1) The working game has a rectifier board already replaced with a Bally one. The bridge rectifiers were upgraded to the more robust front mounted ones. The second machine has a board thats seen better days. I won't even put power to this one. From the forums i've read that this is the easiest board to rebuild. I'm not afraid to do that just not sure its salvagable. Some wiring hacks too which was obviously to avoid changing the burnt header:

    IMG_0006.JPG IMG_0008.JPG
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    Can the board be cleaned up to look decent? See the two wires that were spliced off connector and soldered directly to pins 1 and 8? Seems like more effort than just replacing the header. I know for 90 bucks i can buy a new Rottendog from Playdium store but i'd prefer to have Stern one for the resto machine.

    2) I've spent way too much time trying to navigate Digikey's massive molex offerings. I see the recent tech post which recommended Great Plains Electronics. I'd do that but the online checkout has been disabled so i can't order anything. I have narrowed down the 0.100 and 0.156 headers and housings i think i need. Question is should i invest in the headers with the friction lock shrouds and housings with the ramps? Or just go with the existing "plain" style. Basically what KK series of molex are people using? I'll try and get largest ones and cut to size.

    I'll have a tonne more questions and appreciate any advice!

    Thanks
     
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  2. DRANO

    DRANO Well-Known Member

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    For what they cost, most people prefer to completely replace the rectifier board with new. Sure, you can be a purist, but in the case of classic Bally/Stern machines, I'd rather have the new and improved power board. Great Plains Electronics sells a great one for $60 US... when he has stock
     
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  3. Completist

    Completist New Member

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    Thanks Drano. I agree with that rationale - new board it shall be. My goal here is to have a machine that looks and plays great. And it all starts with that power board... If I can I'd like to use "original" parts - but more of the game specific ones like my pop bumper pet peev (what it is supposed to look like). I'm sure a true purist wouldn't install a repro playfield or re-stencil a cab. I will likely tastefully LED it - which is more to remove the heat to protect my BG and plastics as well as reduce load on the boards.

    As for the power board the GPE one looks very robust. I've sent him a message on when they will have those back in stock and also when they expect to be able to accept orders again. Currently checkout is suspended pending other commitments. This won't hold me up as I have one working power board with proper voltages at the test points. This is to get the second project running eventually.
     
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  4. Menace

    Menace Well-Known Member
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    GPE or Rottondog on the rectifier PCB all day long. Even though GPE has the better one of the two, Ed doesn't usually have stock on it very often. The RD version is just as good quality wise, just doesn't come with all the nice extra's. (GPE version comes with all the pins and connectors to re-pin all the original connectors for it) It's not worth the time or headache to rebuild the originals, they are a pain to work on.

    D
     
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  5. DRANO

    DRANO Well-Known Member

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    While I don't mind LEDs for inserts, I think you may find them to be a challenge behind a backglass. Lots of hotspots and weird colour. 47 bulbs are cooler than the original 44 and, in a home use environment, I don't think you'll hurt the glass unless you have the game on all day.

    Also, I'm having a lot of flickering issues with LEDs on some of my classic stern/bally pins. Even with the seigecraft boards, some bulbs just don't want to behave.

    PS.
    Once you get your 2nd F2K together and ready for sale, I might be a buyer. I've been going through a lot of classic stern lately and, while this title hasn't been top of my list, I'd still take one for a spin and it would not need to be collector quality.
     
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  6. Completist

    Completist New Member

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    When i picked up the second unit i managed to get a head with a very good back glass imo. Perhaps just a 3PL thick job to protect it.

    originally i was only intending to restore one - and just picked up the second for parts. But when i found the mostly populated third playfield it made the ressurection of the second machine feasible. In fact if i found that before the CPR pf i prob would of been happy.

    My first pf - note the planet is ok at first glance but has already been painted. But nothing to protect it after, and no critism to the artist but its now missing all the bonus multiplier values etc. doesnt affect game play but its my first project.

    IMG_0019.JPG

    Still better then one that was in the second machine with a completely painted blue planet. Here is the pf i found that i've started to tear down so i can clean it:

    IMG_0009.JPG


    After a good cleaning only minor touchups required. The planet is imo very good. My only consideration is whether to have it cc to preserve its condition b4 repopulating.

    None of this was to turn a profit - certainly not once i committed to the CPR swap. I just won't need two F2K's when i'm done. I don't plan on restenciling the second cab. I will prob take the worst specimin and restore that cab and paint, leaving the current best for the second.

    IMG_0020.JPG

    Rough corner on this but otherwise solid cab. Think i can rebuild that and once painted shud be good. From what i've read, Bondo for wood is the way to go, once i find it...

    Will def keep you posted on the progress and will likely reach out at some point to discuss clear coating - i understand Drano this is in your wheelhouse...
     
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  7. DRANO

    DRANO Well-Known Member

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    Yup. I can clearcoat. And if all the restoration work is done, super easy for me.

    Looks like you got all you need. Should be fun!
     
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  8. Completist

    Completist New Member

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    Well things are slowly coming together. Mostly been working on getting everything working 100% before i swap. Most notable acheivement was getting the second VSU-100 speech card working :cool:. Ed from GPE has a rectifier board he got back to me last night. He just reopened his online store for any of those waiting to order from him..

    Mostly spent weekend cleaning underplayfield parts. Stripped and rebuilt the three bank drop target assembly think it came out ok.

    IMG_0057.JPG

    Next i'm going to tackle the top side. Done a quick wipe and scan of what touchups are required for the second.

    IMG_0056.JPG

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    A little work in the center and filling in the black key lines. The hardest fix will be under the one standup target where there was lettering. But when the plastics around the maze are in place its not that noticable. Would like to get this pf off the rotisierre so i can start to do the main swap.

    Cab work i'm waiting for the weather to improve. But soon...
     
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  9. Completist

    Completist New Member

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    Well i shopped out the first F2K. Have some cab work to do still but otherwise i'm happy.

    IMG_0096.JPG

    For the second i'm starting to do the CPR swap. So much time goes into cleaning and polishing parts on the underside.... but at least getting my money's worth out of the ultrasonic and tumbler lol here's what she looks like with just side rails on. Will prob make some new oak ones in time, we'll see.

    IMG_0095.JPG

    Scored in allentown when i picked up a new set of unused plastics - marco sold out which sucked. Bay Area has em but it was big coin when u factored in shitty exchange and shipping. This wasnt the set that came with the clears in the maze - but Pinbits supplies those so all good now. Also got a very nice bg which was better than either of the two i had. Then he pretty well threw in a stencil kit and a board set as well.

    Repinning terminals onto wires is tedious. But no point making the game cosmetically nice and ignore the mechs or electronics...
     
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  10. Completist

    Completist New Member

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    Ok so just thought i'd show what my mechs looked like before and after. This is actually a part i enjoy oddly enough. Completly disassembling, cleaning and putting it back together.

    IMG_0099.JPG
    IMG_0101.JPG

    Also i'd like to profess my affection for Lee Valley Hardware. Here's my new toys to make sure you don't read the "oh shit i drilled through my new pf" in this thread. I was able to position the adjustable plastic drill stop up against the chuck so it can't move. It's adjustable down to 1/16th. Otherwise for 1/8th and above i have the nice machined stops. Ten bucks vs the cost of new cpr pf - priceless...

    IMG_0103.JPG

    The other gadget is a self centering, spring loaded punch for marking proper hole locations. The dimples that are there are good for most things but not necessarily for things where exact position is more critical. At least thats my excuse for adding to my tool collection lol.
     
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  11. SUPERBEE

    SUPERBEE Member

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    Looking good. Will be following.
     
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  12. Completist

    Completist New Member

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    Thanks - i'm a little further along than the posts but alas the full time job and 3 young boys seem to distract me from my hobby haha.

    Major assemblies being cleaned / polished (not with a buffer to a mirror finish or anything) and fitted. All the small parts have been tumbled and looking great. Tumbler is best invention ever - that's right Edison I said it. Decided to go with new ground braid which should be in this week. So far no disasters with the drill! Need to get the cab work going too - I have the bondo, resin, Pimp's stencils and the paint. Will post that progress in the coming weeks.
     
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