Setting up pinball machine correctly

Stags6969

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Sep 7, 2018
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Bit of a plea for help here guys.
I've had my Hobbit less than a week, but I'm still not convinced I've got it set up correctly.
So as a minimum I'm asking for advice on what tools to use to ensure that it is set up correctly, but my preference would be if someone local would show me how.
Currently I'm using a small spirit level to ensure it is level side to side and then a couple of different apps on a couple of different phones to try and measure the angle.
My problems are.
1. I always seem to have a discrepancy of between 0.5 and 0.8 front to back.
2. There is very little space, especially near the back, with a flat surface, due to mechs and mylar etc.

Has anyone had similar issues with a Hobbit.
Really would appreciate some help.

Thanks
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DRD

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For Left to Right, you can do this using a ball. Let it run down the game to see whether the game is level. When you play the game, you will also just know if it is out in the left right plane.

For the angle of the Playfield, it is more about whether you like it and whether the game behaves the way you would like. There is no right answer.
 
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Stags6969

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Sep 7, 2018
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For Left to Right, you can do this using a ball. Let it run down the game to see whether the game is level. When you play the game, you will also just know if it is out in the left right plane.

For the angle of the Playfield, it is more about whether you like it and whether the game behaves the way you would like. There is no right answer.
So I don’t need to worry that the angle varies throughout the playfield? Getting shallower near the flippers.
Do I use an average of the 2 readings?

I will set it up steeper to see if it stops the air balls.
 

DRD

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Nowt you can do about it. Your Playfield may be slightly warped. Or your measuring device may be out. Or the Playfield is not level (mylar?, raised inserts?)

Pinball is art not science. Analogue not digital.
 
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Stags6969

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Nowt you can do about it. Your Playfield may be slightly warped. Or your measuring device may be out. Or the Playfield is not level (mylar?, raised inserts?)

Pinball is art not science. Analogue not digital.
As long as it’s nothing to worry about.
I’ll set it up steeper tomorrow, so my 6.5 is between the flippers and see how it goes.

Loving the game
 

Durzel

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If you can make all the shots don't worry about it.

I'd be surprised if the playfield is warped on a brand new machine, which you've said this is. That said it is a curiosity why it is higher at the back than the front. Have you tried speaking to who you bought it from?

If you want to be sure put a flat edge on the playfield and see if there are any gaps underneath.

But.... like DRD I kinda just think if it works then don't fret about it.
 
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Stags6969

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The Hobbit is considered to be a much more enjoyable game when set up steeply. I helps to reduce the 'floaty' feel that they can suffer with.
I've heard that Matt.
But when I have 0.8 degrees difference between front and back, it's hard to know what my actual pitch is. So to get 6.5 between flippers I may be as high as 7.3 at the top.
Going to try and get a straight edge on it later with the pf in and out on its rails and see what that says.
Just confused and concerned with the variation.
Maybe it's cause I'm new to this and should just forget the readings and play it.
 

Durzel

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You bought this new didn't you? Have you spoken to the supplier to see what they say?

Does the pitch get progressively higher as you move the phone/spirit level up the playfield? In other words does it start at 6.5 between the flippers and consistently rise as you get towards the rear?

Get the straight edge on and take some photos and you'll know for sure if its warped or not.

I wonder whether this is normal for some pins.. i.e. if there are a lot of mechs on the playfield I could see the weight of those bowing the playfield slightly in the middle.. I dunno.
 

Neil McRae

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Between the flippers is where I'd measure. There is an iPhone app called pinguy that I use to set up all my games.

Neil.
 
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Stags6969

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Between the flippers is where I'd measure. There is an iPhone app called pinguy that I use to set up all my games.

Neil.
That's what I'm using Neil.
In the 1st post you will see the difference between the measurement at the flippers and the one at the top of the playfield.
It is mech heavy with 4 large mechs in the centre of the playfield.
I've put a straight edge on it and it does bow in the middle. What I don't know is if this is normal for the Hobbit or if I need Phil to come and take a look.

So could do with some Hobbit owners letting me know if their machine is the same.

At the moment it's only set at 6.1 between the flippers as this gives about 6.8 at the top of the pf.
I'll set it up to 6.5 between the flippers and see what that gives me at the top end.
 

Durzel

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Just so I know I'm not talking to myself.....
You bought this new didn't you? Have you spoken to the supplier to see what they say?

Does the pitch get progressively higher as you move the phone/spirit level up the playfield? In other words does it start at 6.5 between the flippers and consistently rise as you get towards the rear?
 
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Durzel

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Also, to put your mind a bit more at ease...

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/leveling-weirdness…ever-seen-this

So yes - your playfield may be warped, or bowing from the weight of mechs in the middle, BUT - this is probably not something you can really avoid and so long as the game plays properly and you can make all of the shots I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.

You could take the playfield out of the game, fully strip it down, flatten it (if it didn't already flatten itself out from the weight being removed) and then as soon as you assembled it all again it would do the same again.

Playfields aren't supported in the middle, only at the back (runners) and front (hangars). There are strips of wood that run along the edge but I don't know how well they actually keep the playfield straight, particularly across the full face of the wood.

I would say I'm not an expert so would be useful to hear some other thoughts and particularly that of other Hobbit owners.

(I've never seen the underside of a Hobbit playfield in person, but a quick Google suggests there is a lot of stuff in the middle of it)
 
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Stags6969

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Also, to put your mind a bit more at ease...

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/leveling-weirdness…ever-seen-this

So yes - your playfield may be warped, or bowing from the weight of mechs in the middle, BUT - this is probably not something you can really avoid and so long as the game plays properly and you can make all of the shots I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.

You could take the playfield out of the game, fully strip it down, flatten it (if it didn't already flatten itself out from the weight being removed) and then as soon as you assembled it all again it would do the same again.

Playfields aren't supported in the middle, only at the back (runners) and front (hangars). There are strips of wood that run along the edge but I don't know how well they actually keep the playfield straight, particularly across the full face of the wood.

I would say I'm not an expert so would be useful to hear some other thoughts and particularly that of other Hobbit owners.

(I've never seen the underside of a Hobbit playfield in person, but a quick Google suggests there is a lot of stuff in the middle of it)
Sorry bud. No you aren't talking to yourself. ?
Thanks for all the feedback.
That's why I the previous post I commented about putting the straight edge on it.
I'll have a read of the pinside thread.
Appreciate you taking your time to help.
Guess I should stop typing and jack the back of my machine up and start playing again
 

kevlar

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If airballs is the issue I'd be more concerned with what it's airballing off. The most common thing is standup targets, Ghostbusters is a really nightmare in this regard. My usual fix is to bend standup targets forward slightly, fit new, thicker foam behind or both. Can you see what the ball is leaping off?
 
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