Newbie with an EM everlasting ball issue!

GreenFrog

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So, after having a pinball machine briefly at home as a kid, and my father (mid 80's) just buying one for himself, I decided to buy an EM machine. It's a Gottlieb Royal Guard (1968) that works great APART from the games never end....

The reset button is wired up to the coin return, and then the ball in the shooter has to go around the game and through the return mechanism before scoring (and electrics) start.

Does anyone where to start to get it back to a 5 ball play?

I've ordered schematics but still waiting for it to arrive.

Many thanks in advance!
 

AlanJ

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Schematics are your helper here. Check it's wired up properly first? Do you suspect the wiring has been altered?

What happens if you simulate dropping a coin in - ie trigger the switch on the coin door that a valid coin would reach? That should clock up a credit on the credit reel in the back box.

When you then press the start game button it should go through a reset cycle consisting of several things: return all score reels to zero, clock a credit down, reset relay banks, set ball in play to 1, etc. Does it do any of that?
 
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GreenFrog

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Thanks Alan - the person i got it from said it had always been like this since they got it (some years ago), so I suspect a re-wiring to create everlasting games!

Apologies in advance for any wrong terms ... I'm learning!!

When I first power up the machine I have to use the coin return button to fire it up - this initiates a reset but the ball is always in the wrong place (ready to shoot), so after this I have to shoot the ball with no scoring so the reset action can end by ejecting the ball ready to shoot. All this works with zero credits and the credits don't increase when this button is used.

I can play a never ending game in this way - there are no ball in play lights working and the game never ends!

Once the machine is powered up I can also use the middle "play" button (on the door) if there are credits showing (I manually added credits via the back box to test this just now), this reduces the credits by one but again the ball in always in the wrong place and has to be played and returned for the reset to finish and allow scoring play to begin. The play button doesn't work if the credit are zero.

again this initiates a never ending game.


the ball counter activates and works during play and is reset when either the coin return or the play button is pressed.
 

Mfresh

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Is there a physical gate in the trough which releases the ball into the shooter lane from the trough. I don’t know royal guard but in some games the gate stays closed at the end of the game when all balls have been played. At the start of the game the gate releases the ball into the shooter lane, but if it is not functioning properly and never closes then that might be why the games go on forever, and why the ball is already in the shooter lane rather than waiting in the trough behind the gate when you start a game...
 
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GreenFrog

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Hi Mfresh - yes I have one of those - it just keeps releasing the ball into the shooter lane each time - I think the logic for stopping the game when the ball counter has got to 5 isn't working as I've just checked what happens when i play 5 balls and even when the counter is on 5 the gate still operates and sends the ball across to the shooter lane.
 

Mfresh

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Other people know more than me, but if I were you I would check on the schematic to see which switches have to be activated in order to fire the ball release coil.

Then I would look at those switches and see if one of them is stuck in the wrong position (leaves too close together so they never open or perhaps so dirty they never close).

It may be the problem is somewhere else entirely and this is just a symptom of the underlying problem but if the gate is always activating then something sure as hell ain’t right!

But you’re going to need the schematics I reckon.
 

AlanJ

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really need to study the schematics.

on my later gottliebs 1973 the ball count unit counts up to a 6th position and when it gets there it ends the game, so that is one thing to check.

the ball really needs to be in the drain trough when you start a new game. not in the shooter lane. so try putting it in the right place before starting a new game.

the coin chute switches should be adding credits so that needs looking at.

look for any evidence of wires that don’t look original or are hanging off, or look like they’ve been messed about with. make a note of these for further investigation.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
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GreenFrog

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I know... without the schematics I'm def working in the dark - I'm wondering if the ball count unit's output is disconnected somehow - that may explain why none of the "ball in play" or "Game Over" lights work and the games never end......
 

AlanJ

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I know... without the schematics I'm def working in the dark - I'm wondering if the ball count unit's output is disconnected somehow - that may explain why none of the "ball in play" or "Game Over" lights work and the games never end......
Could be - or even just a dirty switch contact. But wait for the schematic and then you can easily find which switch contact to go and check.
 

AlanJ

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Slingshot99

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Hi, I’m not a ‘Wiz’ but I’ve had a few EM’s including Royal Guard. There’s a stepper unit that counts the balls down and from the internet pinball data base (ipdb) I’ve pulled the picture attached that should be it. As you play, that will ‘step down’ till game over. As the position of it is at the front of the machine, and in case you don’t want to lift the playfield, you should be able to watch it move when you open the door. If it isn’t moving it needs cleaning. If it moves round to the end it might be the contacts behind it that want setting properly. It’s a little unlikely it’s a wiring issue. The part in red is the stepper, the part in yellow is the bit that moves round. You can see small brass rivet/contacts that count the balls. If you get really stuck contact me direct and I’ll try and talk you through some stuff.
 

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GreenFrog

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Thanks to everyone for their very useful comments....much appreciated

I had a good look at the stepper unit yesterday and it resets to a blank position (no contact) and then clicks through after every ball to end at the penutimate contact position (after 5 balls) after which it stays in that position after every subsequent lost ball - i.e. it never makes it to the final contact position - I think this may be the at least part of the issue (hopefully!!). I haven't attempted to adjust the stepper unit yet, so any tips greatfully received!!

I'm looking at info/videos etc before I attempt any adjustment!

@Mfresh I'm on the Bucks/South Oxfordshire border (near Chinnor)
 

AlanJ

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On my later gottleibs:
The ball count unit has 7 positions: position 0 is where it resents to, then as the first ball is ejected it moves to position 1 and lights "ball in play 1" light, when the ball drains and next ball is ejected it moves to pos 2 and lights "ball in play 2" light. On a 5 ball game, it will continue with 3,4,5 and when ball 5 drains it moves to position 6 and lights the "game over" lamp. On a 3 ball game, after ball 3 is drained, it advances throuhg positions 4 and 5 to again end of position 6, game over.

I am not sure if yours is the same? perhaps a pic?

you could see if you can manually advance it, see if then it ends a game?

read the pinrepair guides on how the different stepper units work, and how to adjust them. there is usually an adjustment screw, it could be it's reaching position 6 but the adjustment is out, so not making contact properly. could be the contacts are dirty, each to check with a multi meter.

Here is circuit from my king pin - its same on my top card too:
1595003824241.png
 
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GreenFrog

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Ok here's some pictures in order - 1st is following reset (no contact), 2nd is one click forward (no contact), 3rd is 2 clicks (contact), 4th is 3 clicks (contact), 5th is 4 clicks (contact) and 6th is 5 clicks (contact on penultimate contact area) - the stepper doesn't move forward anymore than this.
 

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GreenFrog

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Unfortunately none of my ball in play or game over lights work - they are all under the metal plate at the front left of the playing field, however I've done a continuity test on the wires from the stepper unit and those that connect to the bulbs (underneath) and they all match up - i.e. 1st contact is ball in play "1" etc