Trouble-shooting the main opto switch

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rmartin
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Trouble-shooting the main opto switch

Post by rmartin » Thu Jan 29, 2009 2:29 pm

Hi Guru's

I need some help with my SWE1...

I installed a NOS P2K SWE1 (that is a mouthful) conversion kit on my RFM cabinet. The game is updated to the latest code and plays fine with the MAJOR exception that the main playfield opto (Switch #58) does not work. This is the crucial center 'shield' switch.

When I look at the opto emitter LED I cannot see any light. I don't know if that is normal(infrared) or if the emitter light is supposed to be visible. I traced the wires back to the opto board (opto board #24, I believe) and shorted the opto receiver connection. When shorted the P2K diagnostics show the normally open switch does close correctly. There is a red LED lit on the little opto board - which I think means that it has power but might mean something else.

Some Questions:
Is the LED on the switch #58 emitter visible or infrared?
What voltage is supposed to be sent to the emitter from the opto board?
Anyone know what the red LED on the opto board means? power? - fault?

I am a noob at this stuff and would appreciate ANY AND ALL advice with regard to solving this problem.

Side Note: When I first started playing the game I thought it was darn hard. The only way to progress was to hit the small bullseye targets at the top of the playfield to open the holoprojector. I took me a bit to realize that the center opto switch was actually there and not working properly. I got real good and hitting those little targets... but it's kinda hard to knock Jar-Jar on his a** without that opto working and I REALLY want to do that!

Thanks for your time, -Reed

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Chuck
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Re: Trouble-shooting the main opto switch

Post by Chuck » Thu Jan 29, 2009 2:42 pm

Hey Reed,

I'm doing this from memory so bear with me if I get something wrong.

Opto emitters do glow when you use nightvision goggles or a camera. They run on 12v (someone correct me if im wrong) test and make sure there is power going to the emitter. Btw optos are normally closed. They open when a ball blocks the signal. So check your diags and the switch should be closed. If it shows as open you have a problem (which I believe is the case.) You can also use the nightvision on the ball trough and make sure you see the emitters glowing there. If you don't your camera may not be picking it up. The red led shows power going to the board which is good. In a pinch I've gone to radio shack and bought their infra-red led emitters and they have worked well in wpc machines.

Hope this helps.

ChadTower
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Re: Trouble-shooting the main opto switch

Post by ChadTower » Fri Jan 30, 2009 3:10 pm

Like he said, if you look at the opto through the LCD on a video camera or digital still, it will show you the light. Pretty much everyone has one of those now.

rmartin
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Re: Trouble-shooting the main opto switch

Post by rmartin » Fri Jan 30, 2009 7:07 pm

Hey Guys, Thanks for the info!

I tried looking at the opto emitter with my sony 'nightvision' video camera. I could not see any light.

I also tried shining the sony's nightvision light (infrared?) onto the receiver but I could not get the switch to activate. I could not get my video camera down tight against the playfield, so the angle was funny and I don't really know if I got light down the tube to the receiver. I am going to try using a small mirror to reflect to the receiver.

If that does not tell me anything, I am not sure what to try next. I guess I will dissemble the playfield enough to get voltage readings at the emitter and receiver. Hopefully, that will tell me if those components are working.

Where did I put my screwdriver???

Thanks again! -Reed

woodlouse
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Re: Trouble-shooting the main opto switch

Post by woodlouse » Sat Jan 31, 2009 5:49 am

Go into Diagnostics screen - single switches, then block the light path between transitter side and receiver with a lolly stick or similar and the screen will display the change from open to closed if the switch is working. If its not working then you need to change the switch as it sounds like you have already eliminated problems with the wiring.
I think this is right :?

rmartin
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Re: Trouble-shooting the main opto switch

Post by rmartin » Sun Feb 22, 2009 9:44 am

Well, I got the opto fixed. After extensive testing and futzing around, I figured out that both the emitter and receiver were not working and had never worked. My SWE1 conversion kit was NOS and had not been used until I installed it - so it looks like this problem slipped past quality control many years ago. I soldered in a new emitter/reciever pair from Radio Shack and it is working perfectly.

It is a lot of fun to finally have the game working as designed. It is substantially easier to play with the 'shield' opto working correctly. While we have been able to play most of the levels without the opto working, we are finally able to 'trip' Jar-Jar and experience many visual and audio effects that are only triggered by that switch. Lots of fun.

-Reed

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