Modification of drop targets

This drop target bank was just donated to one of my many on-life-support pinball projects. Thanks to the legendary Fonzy from www.fonzy.dk

As I have stated many times, I hate leaf switches with a passion. Thus, I have dug out some microswitches and I will attempt to modify the drop target bank with them. This should make a good prototype for the possible implementation of drop targets to a pinball machine.

/Nicholas

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AVON PINBALL DRIVER BOARD

First look at the driver I/O board for projects like pinball and mechanical games. It works like Master Blaster from Mad Max. You connect your controller, either by piggybacking or by dupont leads. The controller is the Master, the AVON is the Blaster.

If you choose piggybacking, this board is designed to use the Ultimarc U-HID, which will fit the two sockets.

What does the board do:

  • General board, will drive coils, lamps etc.
  • Voltages from 5-50V.
  • 19 MOSFET outputs (up to 20A per channel)
  • 27 inputs (only for piggybacking, otherwise redundant)
  • LED for each channel to see if the controller is outputting signal.
  • Back-voltage protection*
  • Pull-down for floating pins on the controller
  • Only 3.96mm (0.156″) connectors
    *Protection is never 100%!

avon2

/Nicholas

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Pinball project update #35 – finalized

The finalized pinball driver board is being produced, and will hopefully be with me shortly. I hope it’s perfect so I can get on with the next step.

 

Untitled

/Nicholas

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Pinball project update #34 – second prototype

Prototype II just arrived. Very, very nice boards. I made the prototype for four channels and only installed two (left/right flipper). I will test later, but everything checks out with the multimeter. The final board will be much larger and with different placements of components and connectors.

pro2

/Nicholas

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Pinball theme!

I have had a couple of people asking me what the theme will be. I am between themes, two to be exact, but I’ll keep the names under wraps. I can say this, though: I originally wanted to use Forbidden Planet as the theme for my pinball machine, since I love the film and licensing would not be an issue for a ‘hobby-project’. I thought that NOBODY in the entire world would get the same idea, so I didn’t bother to check up on it. I was wrong. Not only is Forbidden Planet being made as a pinball machine, but it is being made right now – and with a ‘power house’ pinball designer.

 

forbidden-planet-3

/Nicholas

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Pinball project update #33

The order for the pinball driver board (prototype II) has been placed. This time from a new place, so apart from testing the input connectors and how zener diodes works in my circuit I will also have a look at the quality of the PCBs from the new manufacturer.

I expect to have the board designed real soon, so hopefully prototype II will be the last. But who knows.

Untitled

/Nicholas

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Pinball project update #29 – prototype

All 5 inputs are working, will test with coils soon.

 

/Nicholas

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Pinball project update #28 – prototype engage!

Finally received the prototype driver board. A very nice looking board, purple, shiny, with ENIG plating. Though ENIG looks great, I might opt against it on the final board. I still need to install some resistors(and caps) as can be seen in the picture below. A video will follow.

 

drv_proto

/Nicholas

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Pinball project update #26 – PCB manufacturing

Today I sent the files to get the small prototype driver board made. Hopefully I will have it within two weeks. Finally moved beyond the vero boards and into actual printed PCBs. I am amazed at how easy designing a simple PCB like this is.

A picture of the what the board should look like. (not the complete board is pictured)

Untitled

/Nicholas

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Pinball project update #25 – driver board

I’m in the process of designing the driver board for the pinball project. I have decided that I want it to be a ‘general driver board’ that will be suitable for other projects, not only this project and not just my own. I will be making the pcb so it will have pretty large tracks everywhere, not just at the higher voltage side, but also at the logic level side. This will help soldering and repairs down the road. I will also try to have ample space between components, while still looking at pcb cost(which rises fast as the board expands).

Here’s the basic first schematic & PCB layout:

drvschemv1

drvspcb1

/Nicholas

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Pinball project update #24 – Decision on the ball part

Well, I think the ball testing is done. Number of times the ball has run over the playfield in the wear-test: 28.000 times. Number of arc shots: 11.000 times. Since 10.000 of the arc shots also resulted in in a wear-test, when running back to the coil, the final numbers are:

Wear-test: 38.000 
Arc-shots: 11.000 
(Total coil hits: 25.000)

This concludes the ball testing. The product is cleared as playfield material. What comes now is more difficult. I will ship the 20cmx20cm print out, and have holes made in it, to see how it fares. This is one of the few things I do not attempt myself.

/Nicholas

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Pinball project update #23 – more testing

Even more tests completed. 10.000 hits with the solenoid kicking the ball up in an arc. As the coil heats up, the bulk of shots will hit Scully on the head. The video below is from the beginning, so distance is somewhat longer.

/Nicholas

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Pinball project #21 – first ball test done

First ball test is done(as seen is update #20). It ran for 14.000 times, which means that the ball ran over the same area 28.000 times in total. The material looks great, no scarring.

Now I’ll set up the test-rig for the ball impacting the playfield, and run that for about 10-20 thousand times.

/Nicholas

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Pinball project update #19 – test print has arrived

Finally! The test print has arrived. I am very satisfied with the result from the company producing it. Colors are great and the same goes for sharpness. I think this will a great solution, and a great alternative to the normal way of building pinball.

This was a crucial and very, very important step in the pinball project.

 

IMG_20160109_131040

/Nicholas

 

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