Flipper Adjustment

paul h

Site Supporter
Mar 26, 2018
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Devon
I'm rebuilding the flipper mechanisms on a Fish Tales and would appreciate a bit of help please.

I've done the right flipper and set it at a similar resting position as the original left flipper (i.e. lined up with the inlane). When I manually push up on the flippers, the old flipper moves much further (62mm at the tip) than the updated flipper (51mm). I've had a quick play and this makes a big difference (can't backhand anything with right flipper). Before I move on to changing the left flipper mech, I wanted to know if this is normal or have I made a mistake somewhere, so any advice would be appreciated. Thanks..... Paul.

flippers1.jpg flippers2.jpg
 

Andydn

Registered
Oct 14, 2019
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Kent
Are the coil stops equal in size? Can you move them to the same position manually?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
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paul h

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Mar 26, 2018
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When you said rebuilding-are all parts brand new and same for both flippers?

Brand new rebuild kit - I haven't done the left flipper yet.

Are the coil stops equal in size? Can you move them to the same position manually?
Coil stops look the same. I am manually pushing them both as far as they will go in the photo. It looks like its the linkage part hitting the coil that prevents it going any further.
 

arakissun

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Feb 21, 2013
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When you change the coil stop and the flipper plunger with the same parts like the right one everything will be the same.
For this problem there are two elements who can cause it-coil stop and flipper plunger.
 
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paul h

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Mar 26, 2018
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When you change the coil stop and the flipper plunger with the same parts like the right one everything will be the same.
For this problem there are two elements who can cause it-coil stop and flipper plunger.
Thanks. Yes, I think changing the left flipper mech will even things up.

I suppose what I was really trying to find out was "how far should the flipper on a Fish Tales flip?" - I wanted to make sure that I had done the right flipper correctly before moving onto the left flipper. It's only the second time I have changed a flipper mechanism, so am not that confident.

I've just adjusted the EOS switch, which seems to make it work better, so I'll move onto the left flipper. Cheers.
 

MadNat

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May 11, 2019
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Warwickshire UK
I’m not sure of a specific stroke length, I can’t see anything specific in the manual.

I can only go by your images - but compared to mine -right looks about right. Left is too far.

Personally once I was able to make the fish-finder, video mode shots, I was happy that the stroke length was sufficient.

My biggest problem was that a previous owner fitter yellow coils to mine at some point - the game was unplayable.

Now I’ve fitted the specified blue coils - it fizzes!! Great game. So check your coils are correct spec.
 
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paul h

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Mar 26, 2018
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Devon
I can only go by your images - but compared to mine -right looks about right. Left is too far.
Thanks. I think you are right - looks like the left one travels further because the plunger link has worn down, which allows it to go further into the coil.

Coils are the blue ones and seem good.
 
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Jay Walker

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Apr 19, 2013
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Hi, paul,

In one sense the method you've used is the wrong way about - moving the flipper to move the linkage and coil plunger, whereas in use the coil plunger originates the movement. But treating both sides the same would show any difference due to wear.

The plastic linkage being the stopping factor as it strikes the coil bracket/coil sleeve points to the plunger and/or stop being worn. Left for long, the link can damage the sleeve, allowing the coil to drop slightly. It should be a little free horizontally and rotationally, but not vertically.

Since Fish Tales has solid-state flipper solenoids, a drawback to moving the flipper is less critical; the end-of-stroke switch adjustment. With the older high-current switching EoS switches, adjustment was best made by moving the plunger, using a thumbnail on the back edge of the plunger. Ideally with the flipper assembly off the machine, i.e. in hand, with the flipper fitted.

Vertical adjustment of the flipper shaft in the linkage can affect the flipper action. Williams used to put a slip of paper in each new game, showing use of their plastic 'chip fork' (also supplied) to set this, titled "Keep that great 'Williams flipper play' on your machine". I asked them once (on a registration card) what they meant by 'keep', since the assembly line had begun resorting to lubricating the coil plunger with grease (a definite no-no). Anyway, even without the special tool, it's just sensible procedure to set the vertical adjustment. With the playfield lowered*, and the closing nut/bolt partially tightened, move the plunger/link/crank manually using the metal crank. Ensure that the flipper doesn't lift upwards off the white plastic bush/bearing while doing so. The idea is to find the relation of flipper shaft to crank which minimises the frictional drag of the plunger sliding into the coil sleeve. Bear in mind that a small amount of clearance is necessary between the crank and the bush, i.e. the flipper should never be fully tight on the bush.

* where practical, as with 'main' flippers. With others, try to at least have the playfield on the support prop rather than vertical.
 
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paul h

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Mar 26, 2018
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Thanks for the info Jay. I left about 1mm between the crank and the bush, but I'll do it again to try to find the position with least friction. Cheers.