When I last updated this project, I had just started cleaning all of the parts that were removed from the playfield. I also just finished cleaning off the playfield itself. Now I just needed to reassemble everything and give it a try. There are a ton of pieces to this game, including a bunch of bulbs that needed replaced. I really didn’t think there is a safe way to test things as I put it back together, so I was hoping that everything would work perfectly after it was all reassembled.
I slowly worked off of my list of assemblies I removed one at a time. I worked backwards replacing the last ones removed first. Everything went pretty smoothly. I replaced several old broken posts with new ones, and put all new lock nuts on each post to make sure they stayed tight. I put new plastic in several places, including over the slingshots. The right slingshot was really bad and was repaired with a drywall screw. Luckily the hole from the screw was hidden inside the assembly and didn’t damage the actual play area. While I had everything removed it was a good change to change ALL of the lamps. That way I also replaced all of the “rubber” in the game from my rubber replacement kit from The Pinball Source. I had several left over pieces, but since I installed many new ones I expected that. The playfield really looked great when I was done assembling it!
After the playfield was assembled and put back into the cabinet, I worked on finishing up the backbox. I labeled all of the connectors to make it easy to reconnect the playfield to the boards. I also replaced all of the bulbs in the backbox. I had to buy some “flasher” bulbs for several positions. These were really cool because they make the translight flash over the different “damage areas” depicted in the graphics.
After everything was put together, I had several small problems to work through. First, there were some flasher lamps not flashing. I found two where the bulb sockets were not connecting well, even tough they were new sockets. I was able to twist them on better to make a better connection. Two other flashers did not work at all. I spent a couple hours testing the power to the flashers and tracing the wiring. Finally after examining the schematics I thought it would be worth replacing the transistor controlling the circuit for the flashers (Q22). Thankfully, that’s all it took! All the lamps and flasher were working great. When I started with the game none of the flashers had bulbs. Now with all of them working the light show was amazing! This by far was the most noticeable improvement.
I then turned my attention to the pop bumpers. My pop bumpers were NOT working. I replaced several parts to them and thought maybe I messed something up. Turned out to just be a fuse. The wrong fuse was installed in the game for that circuit. It didn’t look blown but was not passing any current. I replaced it with the right fuse and it held just fine. At this point everything was working. However, after about five games one of the flipper coils burned up. I think it was really bad before I reassembled it. I picked up a new coil and it worked great!
It’s now been a few months living with this machine and everything is still going great. The game plays much better now, and is really fast! It’s amazing the difference that it makes shopping out a old worn out playfield. I’m really happy with this game, and can’t wait to get another pinball machine for the gameroom someday!
Check out all the Earthshaker pinball pictures in my Earthshaker Photo Album