TAF Ball Launch after ball locked

ylumno3

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Nov 28, 2016
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Hello, I've checked the forum and can see there's a few threads on balls being locked in the swamp and not kicking out and I have a similar problem with a slight variation. When the ball is locked as part of the multi ball set up, i.e when thing grabs it, the next ball will not kick out into the shooter lane to continue play. This only hapopens with the first ball locked for multiball, when the second ball locks the third ball is kicked into the shooter lane to continue play and then when the third ball is locked multiball starts. I've checked the switches both by hand and by rolling a ball down and they are all working as they should be, also when the ball goes into the swamp it's being kicked out again. Has anybody came across this or have any ideas.
 

Dave Bishop

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Jul 21, 2011
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What do you do when the ball doesn’t kick out? Do you have to retreve it?

I had a similar issue, the ball was not rolling into the swamp from the THING box under the playfield. The box had dented over the years of the ball rolling into it. Bent it back, made sure the subway was aligned properly and all sorted.
 
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ylumno3

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Nov 28, 2016
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What do you do when the ball doesn’t kick out? Do you have to retreve it?

I had a similar issue, the ball was not rolling into the swamp from the THING box under the playfield. The box had dented over the years of the ball rolling into it. Bent it back, made sure the subway was aligned properly and all sorted.
The first couple of times it done it I just waited for the machine to find it, it wouldn't on the first round but then on the second round when it operates the bookcase and thing the solenoid would kick it into the swamp side and it would then get ejected leaving no ball locked for multiball. After that when it locked I just opened the door and manually kicked out the next ball to continue play.
 
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ylumno3

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Nov 28, 2016
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The first couple of times it done it I just waited for the machine to find it, it wouldn't on the first round but then on the second round when it operates the bookcase and thing the solenoid would kick it into the swamp side and it would then get ejected leaving no ball locked for multiball. After that when it locked I just opened the door and manually kicked out the next ball to continue play.
I can see the ball roling past in the trough next to the swamp hole/trough underneath the playfield and the switch operates.
 
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ylumno3

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So I checked the switches again just to make sure and they were all working fine but what I noticed when I was rolling the ball into the trough was that when the first one went in the swamp kick out switch was intermitently flsahing as well but not with the second and third balls. Checked the kick out switch and when I operated it the lower swamp lock switch was operating at the same time. Checked the diodes and they were faulty on both switches. Changed them and both switches appeared to be operating as they should (seperately) on the matrix. Switched the game to play and now it's going nuts, balls not even in play and the scores toting up and the features are are all lighting up. Diagnosis continues.
 

carl lawrence

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Jul 31, 2011
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Have you fitted the diodes the right way round ?
In switch edge ( Switch test ) these switches should not be lit I think. switch closed is when switch is pressed and it will light up on the switch Matrix display , so don't just rely on the bleep when the switch is pressed as it could be open , the bleep just tells you that it has been activated weather it is opened or closed .
 
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ylumno3

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Nov 28, 2016
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Diodes were fitted the right way and I was getting a reading on the meter when checking but I eventually found that one end couldn't have been connected to the switch pin correctly and the voltage was getting past and triggering other switches, removed the diode and resoldered and the game is now back again to near operation. The only fault I still have is the original one where the first locked ball isn't triggering the kick out of the second one into the shooter lane but the second locked one triggers the kick out of the third.
 

carl lawrence

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Im switch edge test Do you test switches with fingers or ball , it best to use a ball !
Just trying to see if you need to adjust a switch !
 
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ylumno3

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Nov 28, 2016
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when I googled the fault there was a similar example but it was happening with the second ball, the problem is he didn't really find a solution he jiggled some connections and it just started working again. I'll try that as well.
 

Jay Walker

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Apr 19, 2013
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Hello,

Try putting the m/c into test mode when the problem has occurred, without lifting the playfield or disturbing anything. Go into Switch Levels, and see which switches are shown as 'active' - Closed in the case of the micro switches used for the Swamp holding area. If just one ball is present in the swamp, then the lowest switch in the holding stack should be among those listed, and highlighted on the switch-matrix 'grid'. If it isn't, the switch could be failing, or there may wiring problems elsewhere on the relevant Row and Column
 
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ylumno3

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Nov 28, 2016
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Hello,

Try putting the m/c into test mode when the problem has occurred, without lifting the playfield or disturbing anything. Go into Switch Levels, and see which switches are shown as 'active' - Closed in the case of the micro switches used for the Swamp holding area. If just one ball is present in the swamp, then the lowest switch in the holding stack should be among those listed, and highlighted on the switch-matrix 'grid'. If it isn't, the switch could be failing, or there may wiring problems elsewhere on the relevant Row and Column
can't think of seeing a `test ` mode but I'll have a look
 
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ylumno3

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Nov 28, 2016
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Done a factory reset and it still does the same regards the locked ball, but I did notice a couple of things although they may not be related. When I switched the game on the THI of thing lit up without playing, also when I played the game (manually ejected the ball after the first one was locked) when I went to play the third ball I never shot it hard enough up the shooter lane and it dropped back into the swamp (backside) when this happened it comlpeted the `d` in greed (I'd lit the rest of the letters up playing the game) and the bookcase opened at the same time as the ball was ejected from the swamp.
 
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ylumno3

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Nov 28, 2016
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Hello again, so I eventually got back to working on my machine and there's an issue that I can't get my head around. On the switch edge test I have one switch, the left ramp top #66 triggering the left out lane #76 at the same time there are no other switches closed on either row so I can't get my head around the matrix theory of the fault being in a square, i've checked/tested both diodes and switches with nothing coming out of it. Anybody have any ideas.
 

Sutol

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Nov 18, 2014
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I had an issue were the 'A' stand up to spell Grave triggered a hit to the bookcase everytime. That was a diode put on the wrong way round on the 'A'. Had the game 7yrs before I even noticed it.
Take a pic of the switch and post it.
 
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ylumno3

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Nov 28, 2016
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Ok, so reversed the connections on either then both switches to see if it made a difference, and nothing, I found this unusaul as I thought it would have made things worse if it was already correct but no. I've since changed both swicthes and diodes and it's still the same. Just to note the original issue where it won't kick out a new ball when the first ball is locked in the swamp is still happeneing, could it be a fault on the board ?
 

Durzel

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Oct 1, 2017
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Might not be relevant but you can buy a "swamp accelerator" (here) which is basically a piece of metal that sits in the swamp box and deflects the ball to the scoop more reliably.

If your swamp box isn't quite true then perhaps that's what's happening, and the ball search solenoid vibration is dislodging the ball rather than "finding" it, if that makes sense?

Can't see how it could be a board problem if all the switches are working etc?
 
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ylumno3

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Nov 28, 2016
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Thanks for that, I don't think an accelerator would mae any difference, I may not have explained the problem very well. When the first ball is locked the switch works as it should but the next ball is not kicked out into the shooter lane to play, if I kick it out manually continue playing and manage to lock the second ball the third ball is kicked out into the shooter lane to continue playing automatically as it should be. The reason I was thinking it may be a board problem is bacause all the switches (tests) (apart from the ramp switch) are operating as they should but there's something not happening between when the first ball operates the switch when locked and the signal going to the solenoid to kick out the next ball.
 

pinballmania

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Jul 21, 2011
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When the problem arises, go into switch test, take a picture of the switch matrix display and post it on here. This will tell us exactly what the cpu is seeing at the time a ball is lost.
 

Durzel

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So we're clear - when you lock the first ball Thing takes the ball away, you see "Ball locked for Multiball" on the DMD and then nothing happens?

To echo the above, go into Switch Edge test once you've locked the ball and nothing is happening, and post up a photo of it. There's enough people with TAFs to be able to compare.

I'm wondering if the ball isn't being seen in the swamp for some reason.

The idea that there is a board fault that manifests in this exact way sounds to me to be too bizarre, but perhaps one of the resident experts can say if it's a possibility.
 

Durzel

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My guess is that your Swamp Lower switch is faulty, or stuck closed/flapping and the game is ignoring it.
 
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ylumno3

Member
Nov 28, 2016
41
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Scotland
All the switches seem to be operating as designed certainly on an edge test anyway. So i've taken a couple of photos one with the first ball locked and one with two balls locked, what I did notice was when the second ball is locked the `not used` switchIMG_2512.JPGIMG_2513.JPG indication goes out
 

MartinY

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Nov 18, 2017
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Attached are my active switches.
1st ball locked:
Right Trough, Always Closed, Ball Shooter, Bookcase Opto 1-5, Bumper Lane Opto, Swamp Lock Lower, Bookcase Open, Thing Opto


20190128_191347.jpg

Note: your bookcase appears to be closed after the first lock (which it shouldn't be) 8-2, and you have an unused switch activating 8-3 (as you noticed)

2nd ball locked:
Always Closed, Ball Shooter, Bookcase Opto 1-5, Bumper Lane Opto, Swamp Lock Centre, Swamp Lock Lower,, Bookcase Open, Thing Opto
Your bookcase is still closed (apparently) and your unused switch is now OK.

20190128_191942.jpg

Is your bookcase open when you can lock the balls?
 
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MartinY

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Oh, and your thing Opto isn't working by the look of it - I'm guessing that the Thing flipper on the LHS doesn't operate when you hit Thing flips?