Had time to clear coat this on the weekend. Drano suggested that I paint the bare wood white before I put down the first layer of clear coat so that it wouldn't soak into the wood, so I did that first.
The next day I took it to work to spray it. I wiped it down with naphtha before coating it to remove and residues or oils from handling it. Here it is ready for the first coat.
The product I used is a professional grade automotive clear called Wanda Low VOC Clear. I bought it from Maslack.
This stuff is super toxic, and wearing a respirator and goggles is a must. It's got a pretty short pot life, about 45 minutes, so you have to work quickly with it. It starts to cure quickly too so you have to clean yor equipment right away. Luckily we've got some pretty wicked stuff at work that is great for cleaning up stuff like this.
Methyl Ethyl Ketone it's called. The guys usually refer to it as MEK. It's awesome for cleaning up the spray equipment but it's also super toxic. Eats right through nitril gloves. Needless to say I kept the respirator on while cleaning.
I sprayed the first coat which was somewhat thin. I've never done this before and I was extremely nervous. I was even more nervous after it was sprayed and looked it at. It had quite a bit of texture and I was concerned.
I took it home and sanded it a bit with 600 grit sandpaper and then started to work on the touch ups. I used water based acrylics for the painting. Basics by Liquitex. Matched the paints as best as I could and then touched up the damaged sections.
The results aren't perfect, and I must admit I got a bit impatient and kinda just settled in the end. But once I felt like I had fixed the art enough for my liking, I took it back to work and continued spraying clear coat. I was very relieved when each coat was going on smoother and smoother. Also once I had a big of a base built up I started laying the coats on a lot wetter. It's also pretty cold up here right now so the shop isn't hot, which means the clear coat dries more slowly and levels itself a little better from what I could tell. Here's another shot of one of the early base layers. You can still see it's kinda textured kinda with the grain of the wood.
Overall I'm very pleased with the final product. It's not perfect but it's going to look and play great. Here are a few pictures and a video.
Considering I've never painted anything before, I happy with it. I've learned a lot about he process and I'm confident in my ability to produce an even better result on the next one I do.
Fantastic Ben. This is quite the undertaking. Most often we are just plain scared to take on larger PF repairs yet you've had the courage to give it a go. You are gaining experience and building confidence too. Now there will be no stopping you.
Made some more minor progress tonight. Completely stripped the rest of the cab.
There was one structural issue with the head. I believe the previous owner moved the game out of a basement with the head still attached. The weight of the head during the move caused some damage to the one corner. To fix it I actually had to pull it apart a bit more so that I would be able to remove the damaged layer of plywood and fix it.
Went over to a buddies house and ripped a small piece of scrap hardwood on the table saw to fill the gap from the damaged wood I removed, glued it, put a couple finishing nails through the side and it is structurally sound again.
I've been getting plenty of work done on Wizard, but I haven't been documenting it as well as at the beginning and I haven't been posting the progress, so here is the update!
Went over all of the red on the cab with acrylic paint pens. They were pretty faded. This took forever and I found it extremely boring. Here are the before and after shots.
The legs were shot.
Luckily I've got access to a sandblasted at work, so I blasted them and then sprayed them a semi gloss grey. Pleased with the results.
Installed new wire to ground the GI
Re populated the bottom side of the playfield. This took longer than I expected as I had to resoldered all the GI and clean and all the mechanisms as I went, minus the steppers as I had already done that.
Cleaned up the flip flag unit as it was kinda gummed up inside. The polished steel top came out super nice.
Cleaned up the front and back side of the back glass. This little guy had to go.
Because the clear was so thick, the star rollover holes were smaller than before so I had to clean them up and remove some clear from inside the groves. This was a tricky process. Not sure if there is a better way to do it but I had a small file that I used to clean them out.
I discovered you have to use a downward motion otherwise you. Can lift the clear on the rollover. Some of them turned out pretty much perfect, and some of them got a bit messed up, but I can live with it. This was the worst one.
Of course I had to mess up my apron... There was some crap stuck to it and I tried scrubbing it with mean green but it didn't want to come off. Used a bit of goo gone which helped a bit, but then came the mistake. I sprayed it with more mean green and I let it sit for a while. I can't really remember how long but it was at least 25 minutes, maybe upwards to an hour? Not sure. Either way I'm not sure if it was just the mean green or some kind of reaction between the mean green and the goo gone, but either way when I went to wipe it off I could immediately see the residue was yellowish. Didn't think much of it but I wiped EXTREMELY gently to me safe and sure enough it wiped some of the paint right off. This was the final result.
Lesson learned. Thinking I'll just make up a decal or something. We'll see.
Repopulated the top side of the playfield. I was pretty excited to see it all back together so I threw in a ball and turned it on hoping for anything other than a smokey fireball.
I wasn't entirely surprised when it blew a fuse immediately. After all I did strip the whole playfield. Anyways the fuse that blew was the 10A solenoid fuse. I figured a switch was closed somewhere locking on a coil. I looked through and found two. One rollover switch and one slingshot switch.
Now this is when I made another silly choice which in turn had me chasing my tail for a while. Because the game worked before I tore it apart, and because I had just checked over all of the switches, I was pretty confident I had solved the issue. When I was looking through my fuses, I couldn't find a 10A fuse to replace the one I blew. The next smaller one I had was 7A. I didn't know f this would be enough for the solenoids, and I was expecting everything to work. I saw I had a 20A fuse and for whatever reason (it was late and I had been working in the game for about 10 hours) I thought I'd throw that in. I figured if the problem was solved it won't do any harm, and if it's a serious short it would probably blow the 20A fuse anyways. Wasn't really thinking clearly. Flipped the power switch and after a few seconds the 8A line fuse blew. I was fed up and it was late so I said I'd come back to it in a day or so.
Well when I came back I forgot about the 20A fuse. Long story short I ended up chasing my tail trying to figure out why the line fuse was blowing. Until I finally remembered I had a 20A fuse in place of a 10A and the fuse further up stream (the line fuse) was just taking the hit instead of the solenoid fuse.
Went and picked up the proper fuses, installed he 10A fuse where it was supposed to be and sure enough it blew.
In talking to some regulars around here, it was suggested that I try to isolate where the short was (ie. The cab, playfield, or head) by removing them.
Since I had stripped the entire playfield I was willing to bet my paycheque that the short was somewhere there. I disconnected the playfield and turned on the game. To my surprise the solenoid fuse blew again. Hmm. Second guess was the it was in the cab. I did a little bit of soldering while the playfield was in the game when I was doing to pop bumpers and a GI or two that I realized I had missed. I was pretty careful but I could have dropped some solder into the bottom of the cab causing a short. Also I hadn't really done anything in the head since I had the game up and running so I didn't think the problem was there, so I disconnected the head which meant it was only the cab receiving power and I turned it on again expecting the fuse to blow. Sure enough, every time I think I'm right, I'm wrong... Haha. The fuse didn't blow. I was quite surprised but also happy that I had isolated the short to the head. It's much easier for me to poke around in the head looking for a short, and I can do it standing up instead of all hunched over and contorted.
Spent about half an hour scouring the head looking everything over 10 times. Cursing and swearing for something to jump out at me. Finally I saw this little gem. Hard to see even once I found it.
The red wire at the bottom of this bundle had be resting against a coil lug and it had worn a little tiny hole through the insulation. By the time I saw it it wasn't actually touching anymore but it was pretty close. When I was moving things around looking for the short I imagine I pulled it away just a bit and I was able to see it. I was pretty happy to find it, but after all f these twists and turns I was expecting that it wouldn't solve the problem. To my astonishment I turned on the game and BOOM, no short. Lights on. Happy camper. Through in some credits and hit the start button. Player one score reel was showing a score and it zeroed it nicely, score motor turned, no ball kicked into the shooter lane and it's not trying to. Jeez it doesn't stop. Time to figure out why it's not kicking a ball into play. My guess is something to do with the ball trough switch. I think if it knew the ball was there the score motor would keep cycling trying to kick the ball into play. Just a hunch but more trouble shooting later.
Got the ball kicking out into the shooter lane. Just a mid adjusted switch.
After I solved that issue, I found that the bonus step up coil was locking on. Took a look at the schematic.
The every wire runs through normally open switches on the switch motor, and at least one other switch, except for the wire that runs the the advance bonus relay. It seemed like the simplest culprit so I took a quick look at the relay. All the switches looked to be adjusted fine, so I flipped the game on and sure enough, the advance bonus relay was also locking on. Back to the schematic.
Looks like the bonus advance relay solenoid gets its power from the #1 relay. Flipped the power switch and it was locking on too. Back to the schematic.
The number one relay is activated by only two switches on the playfield. The #1 target and #1 rollover. Took a quick look at the #1 target was closed.
Adjusted the switch and no more locked on coils.
Next issue was that some of the bonus lights were intermittently not lighting up properly. The bonus was working and adding correctly, but the lights just weren't lighting up consistently. I assumed the ground wire would be the issue because I had resoldered all of them, but when I rang out the socket to the ground wire it tested fine. So I turned the game on and manually advanced the bonus to one of the lights that wouldn't light up properly and checked for voltage at the socket. Sure enough it wasn't getting any. I cleaned off the bonus step up unit again, scuffed and cleaned all the pads and all the lights work fine now.