Saturday, May 4, 2013


Guess who just played her first game of Royal Flush in a month?  THIS GAL!
I am still unsure at how the playfield stuff is turned on/off in the schematics, as it doesn't really get to ground, but I did see the Q and AX relay were involved, so I searched for the wire colours and concentrated on those switches.  Turns out it was the secondary make/break on the AX that was wayyyy too open.  5 minutes of adjusting, and CLACK, the flippers now worked, the playfield was now live!

I played, and it was good.

A problem still persists:  The lights for ball # and player # aren't lit, but checking the schematics the AX is involved in both of those as well, so probably just a straightforward adjustment there.

After I get in some good games I will address that lighting issue.  Before I get back to my original list of issues with the game, I learned something from the Gottlieb Parts Manual.  The playfield has a number of difficulty settings, and the Joker standups can be adjusted to be easier.  Right now they are in the conservative position, meaning nothing less than a dead-on hit will be able to trigger it.  The surrounding rubbers will catch any ball that is slightly askew, and send it away.
But more about this change in another poster.  Right now, off to play Royal Flush!

Getting the ball # and player # lights back on was easy.  There had been issues with the bonuses being added, but after fixing that light issue, that problem has disappeared.  Let's see if it comes back later.
What was less easy was the make/break switch that kept the playfield active.  It was quite difficult to bend it to a reliable spot.  The center of the 3 switches had a mild bend in it, and I think that, plus contact corrosion, played a role in its fickleness.
 One new problem discovered:  the game is not advancing past player 3.  No worries, I'll stick to 2 player games for the time being.  after all I've been through, tracing the player advance circuitry seems like a novel thing to do for pleasure, but I'll save my confident attempts at it for tomorrow.

Friday, May 3, 2013

progress update

After spending many hours studying schematics, I resolved to give the basics another go.  I cleaned the player-unit P5 contacts.  Again.
I pressed the button, watched the dance, and OMG the AX relay unlatched!  Reset sequence completed!  It was actually the player unit not signalling home position blocking it, despite having attempted to clean the contacts previously.

But then, new problems:  I turned the machine off and on again, and suddenly the player unit wasn't stepping.  Spent a lot of time studying the circuitry for that, but in the end I managed to fix things via manually stepping through it.   Depressing the solenoid, I got through each step manually.  Everything behaved as expected, for each step, except for the fact the player unit wasn't manually moving forward.  Got to to the end.  Reset the game, and hmmm suddenly it's stepping fine.
Was something stuck in it's sequence?  I am not sure what it could have been, but I expect this issue might rear it's head again in the near future.

So after that I dropped the playfield back in, put the ball in the drain hole, added credits, and then pressed the start button.  Player unit clacks through, everything resets OK, AX motor unlatches properly, stopping the player motor, and the ball is ejected in to the shooter lane!  Ahhhh it's working!

But then, uh oh...  The flippers aren't flipping.  The playfield is lit, but nothing is activating on the playfield.
I check the schematics:  There seems to be a Q / AX combo that disables the upper playfield, but the schematics don't actually show ANY normal path for the circuit to return to ground.  I am a bit confused by this.
I tried chopsticking the Q relay's NC contacts, but all seems nominal there, so what could it be?  AX is latched.  Q (game over relay) is off, as expected, the NC connections all seem  good.  The schematic itself seems ambiguous as to how the proper circuit completes to allow the basic flipper operation.

That's where it stands as of now.  More investigation tomorrow.