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Page 8Atronic Technical Bulletin
Page 10Paltronics Progressive
Page 15SlotFest Moves to Las Vegas
Page 20Kristel LCD Test Points
Page 22MCM Electronics Announces
Interactive Online Flyers
Page 22Multitron: From Unicum Gaming
Page 24Oasis Questions and Answers
Page 28Quick & Simple Repairs #29
Page 32Power On Troubleshooting
Page 38Subscriptions and Order Form
Inside Slot Tech Magazine
September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 4
Slot Tech Editorial
Slot Tech Magazine
Technical WritersTed Befus, Jason Czito,
Herschel W. Peeler, PatPorath, Vic Fortenbach
International ContributorMartin Dempsey
Slot Tech Magazine is publishedmonthly bySlot Tech Magazine1944 Falmouth Dr.El Cajon, CA 92020-2827tel.619.593.6131 fax.619.593.6132e-mail [email protected] the website at slot-techs.com
SUBSCRIPTIONSDomestic (USA) 1 year - $60.00 2 years - $120.00International 1 year - $120.00 2 years -$240.00
Copyright 2007 under the UniversalCopyright Convention. All rights re-served.
Slot Tech Editorial
Dear Readers,One of my responsibilities aseditor of Slot Tech Magazineis to double-check and cor-rect factual information aswell as typographical, punc-tuation and grammatical er-rors before we go to press.These are completely objec-tive evaluations. There is,generally speaking, just oneway to do things correctlyand I strive to make it so(that’s not to say that someGremlins don’t slip by fromtime-to-time).
However, another side of ed-iting is establishing and
maintaining a sort of senseof style for the magazine. I’mnot talking about graphicsand fancy artwork. What Imean is that regardless of thefact that Slot Tech Magazineis a technical journal full ofschematic diagrams and cir-cuit descriptions, I try to keepthings friendly and personal.Electronics and slot machinerepair doesn’t have to bestuffy and impersonal. It’sfun and exciting and chal-lenging and rewarding and soI sometimes make smallchanges to reflect that atti-tude toward the subject athand.
This, by definition then, iscompletely subjective. Thistype of editing isn’t reallysupposed to change anythingas far as the facts are con-cerned, just change the style.However, in Bill Mikulski’srecent article on the Atronice-motion LCD monitor fail-ure, I made a slight changethat has come back to biteme (just a little nip, really)and so I want to fess up be-cause in this case, the authorwas actually 100% correct inhis original submission andI changed it to make itslightly less so.
Regarding inverter failure,Bill’s original submissionread “Some of the techs weretelling me that they actuallyjumper the fuse. I would notrecommend this. For the$22.20 it’s simply not worththe risk.”
I changed it to read “Some ofthe techs were telling me thatthey actually jumper thefuse. I can’t recommend thisbut if it works for you, it’shard to argue against it. How-ever, for $22.20, is it worththe risk?”
See, I was trying to be“chummy!” It was supposedto be a kind of “Hey, buddy,if it works for you, who arewe at Slot Tech Magazine toargue with success?” sort ofthing.
Only the practice is actuallynot successful (contrary tofield reports) and is, in fact,causing problems down theline (as one might expectwhen one bypasses a protec-tion device like a fuse). Iguess I just assumed thatany real short in the inverterwith a bypassed fuse wouldeither cause the power sup-ply to go into OCP (over-cur-rent protection) and shutdown or open a series resis-tor (or even blow open atrace).
I say this now because I re-ceived the following submis-
September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 6
Slot Tech Editorial Continued
sion from Atronic’s MichaelBrennan:
Important Note on AtronicLCDs
It’s been a while since we (asin Atronic) contributed to SlotTech Magazine, and we’vemissed the outlet and oppor-tunity, but a recent develop-ment has given us a perfecttime to chime in again. So, wehave written a mini-article ina response to the July 2007Slot Tech Magazine featurearticle “LCDs and Fans NeedPMs Too” by Bill Mikulski,which primarily dealt with oure-motion cabinet.
Let me begin by saying howwell-explained and helpfulthis article proved to be. Pre-ventative maintenance is cru-cial to extending the life of anymachine, and the author pro-vided great insight regardingtips and ideas for prolongingthe life of e-motion monitors.
In fact, we agree and supportpretty much everything out-lined in the article. However,we wanted to call special at-tention to one paragraph nearthe end of the article, in themiddle of page 10. Here is theportion of the article that wewant to discuss:
“There is a three amp surfacemount fuse that blows on this
inverter board…. Some of thetechs were telling me that theactually jumper the fuse. Ican’t recommend this but if itworks for you, it’s hard to ar-gue against it. However, for$22.20, is it worth the risk?Changing this inverter boardis quite simple.”
The author is very wise whenhe asks, “Is it worth the risk?”Our response: “No, it is not.”Slot technicians, please do notmodify this inverter board.Repairing / modifying the in-verter board as a whole or“jumping” this fuse is defi-nitely not worth the risk.
A few arguments against thismodification include: 1) thismodification may cause criti-cal component failure else-where in the cabinet; 2) thisalteration may lead to safetyrisks; 3) this home-made ad-justment to the fuse will voidwarranties.
We have heard through thegrapevine that a failure of in-verter board three-amp fusesis not uncommon-- acrossmultiple vendors and LCDs.But we strongly recommendthat you play it safe and re-place the entire inverter boardif this fuse fails. Even thoughjumping a fuse seems like asmall modification, keep inmind that when you do this,you are removing an inherent
safety feature within the ma-chine. Once this fuse is dis-abled or bypassed, any com-ponent that runs on 12 voltshas the potential to be nega-tively affected.
Again, if you determine thatyour e-motion inverter boardhas failed, replace the entireboard. You can order onethrough us, part number65040176 for $22.00. Fur-thermore, the timing on thiswhole thing is pretty uncanny,since we recently addressedinverter board repairs (as in,“do not perform them”) in atechnical document (TD AA07-019). You can refer to thatbulletin for more information.
In conclusion, we want tothank the author and SlotTech Magazine for publishinga perceptive and helpful ar-ticle about our e-motion cabi-net. Thanks for listening, andwe hope we can find the timeto contribute again in the nearfuture.
And just to drive the pointhome, we have published theofficial CN on the followingpage in the magazine, ifyou’re keeping a binder ofCNs somewhere in the shop.
See you at the casino.
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Slot Tech Feature Article
Progressive systemshave been around forsome time. Some havehad strange quirks while oth-ers were rock solid when itcame to performance butwere way too complicatedwith the hardware and soft-
ware set up. Some of thecompanies that manufac-tured progressive systemshave stopped making sys-tems, were purchased andmerged into a new companyor have just plain disap-peared.
However, one company thathas been around and stillgoing strong is Paltronics.Paltronics does not just make
progressive systems but sys-tems for the entire casino.Their line up of products in-cludes the progressive sys-tems, as well as casino me-dia and table game systems.Paltronics markets their sys-tems to casinos under theOne Link brand but what isexactly is the One Link sys-tem from Paltronics? Maybea better question would be“What or who is Paltronics?”
By Vic Fortenbach
September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 12
Paltronics Inc. was foundedby Angelo Palmisano, hencethe Pal in Paltronics. Theirheadquarters is located inCrystal Lake, which is nearChicago, Illinois. Paltronicsalso has offices Las Vegas aswell as an affiliate office inAustralia. In the past 15years, they have grown intoone of the industry innova-tors for, as the companywebsite proclaims, “Creatingincreasingly compelling sys-tem solutions for the Casinogaming market.” Now that isa mouthful!
The One Link System actu-ally encompasses three dif-ferent systems: the One LinkSlot System, One Link Mediaand One Link Table System.
The One Link Slot System isthe name for the slot machineprogressive function, whichincludes all of the hardware
and the software required fora slot machine’s progressivesystem. The One Link Slotsystem includes the in-ma-chine LED progressive dis-plays, as well as progressivedisplay data above the slotbank displayed on a plasmascreen and everything in-be-tween.
The One link media systemcombines with the progres-sive system to display pro-gressive meters and casinoadvertising on an LCD orplasma screen.
The One Link Table GamesSystem includes tablebonusing games for Black-jack and Baccarat tables, ex-clusively. If you would likeadditional information on theOne Link Media or One LinkTable Systems, check outPaltronics web site at:www.paltronics.com
The One link Slot System isnot your ordinary progres-sive and display system. Thissystem is very elaborate andexpandable. Gone is thesimple standalone progres-sive board with power sup-ply and LED displaymounted in the display glass.With the Paltronics system,a single interface board (thePAL193 Machine InterfaceCard or MIC as it’s called) isinstalled into each machine.The PAL193 MIC is easilyconfigured for many differenttypes and manufacturers ofslot machines.
One interesting featureabout the One Link Slot sys-tem is its use of already stan-dard computer cables andconnectors. I can rememberone progressive bank thathad constant problems withone very long custom pro-gressive cable that was con-
September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 14
nected to each slot machine.Somehow, that long cable didnot connect properly to thecontroller and was alwaysgiving us problems. The Onelink Slot progressive systemuses computer style Category5 (CAT5) cables for the pro-gressive link. The CAT5 cableis daisy chained to eachPAL193 board in each ma-chine and then connected toa jackpot controller.
The jackpot controller is thebrain of the Paltronics pro-gressive system, there areseveral jackpot controllersavailable depending on yourown progressive configura-tion (more on the progressivecontrollers later). The OneLink Slot System is expand-able and versatile. You canuse the slot machines them-selves for the progressive dis-play (if they have the capa-bility of displaying the pro-gressive amount on thescreen) or you can use aPaltronics LED in-machinemeter to display progressiveamounts. The addition of in-machine LED progressivemeters requires some addi-tional parts. In addition tothe actual LED display, aPaltronics board (named thePAL111 Display Controller) isrequired. This board plugsinto the PAL193 board witha standard 4 pin phone stylecable and to the LED displaywith a ribbon cable.
Using an in-machine meterand its interface board willincrease the power require-ments. You will have to up-grade the Paltronics powersupply from the standard 2-
25-12 to a higher output T60power supply. If you chooseto use an LED in-machinemeter, you may want to con-sider a new Paltronics LEDmeter. This new meter hasthe brilliance of over 65,000colors. This new meter dis-play sure beats the look of thestandard red, yellow, greendisplays that have been socommon since progressivedisplays first appeared. If youwant to go big for your pro-gressive display, a large LEDmeter that is over three feetlong and made to be installedin a casino sign is also avail-able.
The whole One Link Slot Sys-tem may be overwhelming atfirst glance but when it’s bro-ken down into the basicparts, everything comes to-gether. The PAL193 board isinstalled in each machinethat will be participating inthe progressive amount pool.
The Paltronics PAL193 boardis compatible with many slotmanufacturers’ systems. Likeany multiple game progres-sive system, there are somebasic configurations re-quired. In the center area ofthe PAL 193 board, there is a14 pin communications chipsocket called the PAL175.This socket is for a chip thatconfigures the PAL193 boardfor either RS232 or RS485slot machine communica-tions. These are standardcommunication protocols.IGT uses RS232 for its pro-gressive communicationwhile Bally uses RS485.Other slot manufacturers useone or the other protocol.
The RS232 configuration de-vice is a single 14 pin chip,while the RS485 configura-tion is a small header boardwith a surface mount chipmounted on the underside ofthe PAL175 that plugs intothe socket. Some PAL193MIC boards do not have asocket, so they must be or-dered specifically for the typeof machine participating onthe slot progressive bank.
Once you have selected andinstalled the correct commu-nications chip, the PAL193MIC must now be assignedan Identification number.This number is used to iden-tify the machine on the bank.It must be unique. The DIPswitches on the PAL193board are used to set theboard/machine’s ID. This IDnumber will tell the jackpotcontroller which machine iswhich. The ID number can beany number between one andthirty-two.
The PAL193 board has aneight position switch DIPswitch bank. Only switchesone though six are used to setthe game’s ID. To set the DIPswitches correctly, you mustknow how to count using thebinary system. The PAL193board gets its unique ID fromthe way the DIP switches areset. A switch that is in the“on” position is equal to aone. A switch in the “off” po-sition is equal to a zero. TheDIP switches are labeled 1-6on the plastic body. Each ofthe switches has a differentbinary value. DIP switch oneis the “one’s bit.” DIP switchnumber two is the “two’s bit.”
September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 16
Number three has a value of four. DIPswitches four, five and six each have a valueof eight, 16 and 32, respectively. One way Iremember how to count in the binary sys-tem, is that each number doubles the lastnumber. The first switch is one, the secondswitch is two, the third switch is four, thefourth switch is eight, the fifth switch is six-teen and the sixth switch is thirty-two.
To exercise your brain a bit more, here are afew examples on how to set the ID switcheson the PAL193 board. To set a game’s ID fornumber three, you would need to slide DIPswitch number one and number two to on,leaving the other four switches off. To set theID for machine number nine, set DIPswitches number one and number four on,switches two, three, five and six would beoff. The last example for an ID of thirty wouldbe all switches on except number two. Referto the chart for the correct settings of theDIP switches. If you’re a little fuzzy on thebinary system, there is an excellent web siteat: http://tinyurl.com/yo652g.
The PAL193 board has one bank of eight DIPswitches. Six are used to set the progressivemachine’s ID number. The other two DIPswitches serve a special function not associ-ated with the game’s ID number. DIP switchnumber seven is used to set the pulse polar-ity for the coin-in and jackpot signals. Thesepulse signals originate in the machine andare the coin-in and the hit or progressivejackpot signals for the PAL193 board. Thenumerical data from the progressive jackpothit is transferred from the PAL193 MIC boardto the machine through the PAL193 commu-nication port. This port is an eight pin con-nector on the edge of the PAL193 board.Depending on the slot game manufacturer,the pulse polarity could be positive or nega-tive. DIP switch number seven sets the op-tion.
DIP switch eight is for a RAM clear of thePAL193 board. Like the RAM on a slot ma-chine that sometimes gets corrupted, thePAL193 on board RAM also sometimes getscorrupted, the main difference with the
PAL193 board is that you do not need anyspecial clear chips to clear the RAM. If youneed to RAM clear the PAL193 board, justmove DIP switch eight to the “on” position,remove and reconnect the power to thePAL193 board and move the number eightswitch back to the “off” position.
When you do a new installation of the PAL193board into a machine, the RAM clear DIPswitch will be shipped in the on position.Rarely will you have to do a RAM clear onthe PAL193 board.
One example of a RAM clear I had to do overtwo years ago was on a Bally ProSlot 6000.The machine’s red LED display displayed the91 code which indicated no communicationfrom the progressive unit, in this case, thePAL193 board. It looked like a RAM clear on
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the machine’s RAM using thespecial clear chips would bein order. But it turned out asimple RAM clear on thePAL193 board cleared theerror and the machine wasonline.
The PAL193 board has sev-eral LED indicators to showthe status of the progressivesystem. Looking at theseLEDs is a good visual indica-tion of what is going on withthe system and can maketroubleshooting easier. Onthe PAL193 board, there areseven LEDs. The LEDs arelabeled on the board. LEDsone and two flash to showcommunication between the
PAL193 board and the slotmachine. Obviously if one ofthese LEDs is not flashingthen the link between themachine’s progressive portand the PAL193 is broken.
If you have a LED sign con-nected to the PAL193 board,then LEDs three and four willflash when transmitting andreceiving data to and from thesign. LEDs five and six arethe network LEDs. They flashto show the daisy chain linkbetween the PAL193 boardsin each machine. The lastLED, number seven, is themost important LED. It’s the“heartbeat” or CPU status ofthe PAL193 board. It’s appro-
priate that this LED is thecolor red. If this LED is juston or off and not flashing,then something is wrong withthe board’s CPU chip or as-sociated circuitry. The LEDheartbeat should be flashingwhenever the PAL193 boardis powered on.
- Vic [email protected]
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September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 24
Slot Tech Mailbag
By Jason Czito
We recently installedthe Oasis system inour casino. Up un-til this time we had no sys-tem at all. I have a few ques-tions I hope you may be ableto answer. After reading yourarticles in Slot Tech Maga-zine, you seem very knowl-edgeable on this system.
1-What exactly doesthe meter card do and whenwould you use it?
2-How and whenwould you clear ram on theDPU and or Sentinel?
3-Steps to do a floormove from one DPU to an-other DPU?
4-How to remove a Fi-ber DPU that's already on thefloor and convert to a regu-lar DPU?
From: Jason Czito First and foremost - are youusing Oasis Prime (11.61 orhigher)? If so, you'll need tocall Aristocrat and have themwalk you through it. We'reusing 11.51 and I'm guess-ing you are using 11.52? 1 - The meter card sends asignal to the Poller to take asnapshot of the current ma-chine meters, which it placesin a separate table in the da-tabase. This table can beviewed by way of the MeterComparison program or aCrystal Report if you knowyour way around the data-base structure.
If, for example, you're goingto clear the memory on amachine that malfunctionedduring the day but don't wantto lose the meter informationfrom this first half of the day,simply put the meter card inand take it back out. Thisway, when the audit depart-ment gets the meters for theday, they can add the metersfrom the snapshot you tookwith the meter card for the
actual revenue for the day.
The meter card is likewiseused when a new machine isadded to the system, espe-cially if the starting metersare not zero. This only hap-pened to us once, where weadded a leased game to thefloor that had pre-existingmeters on it but didn't havethe software to clear it. Themeter snapshot told us whatthe starting meters were, sothe audit department wouldknow the actual daily rev-enue and what was leftoverfrom the starting day.
Seriously though, I'm stillworking with Aristocrat to getto the bottom of exactly howthe meter card works withthe poller but this is basicallyit. 2 - We've only needed to clearRAM on a DPU once, whichI'll explain in a bit. We clearRAM on a Sentinel on occa-sion to rectify the occasionalcommunication error. Forexample, Konami games witholder communication firm-ware (and somewhat old Sen-
tinel firmware: 11.53j) will stop taking tickets after sometime (but will otherwise be functioning normally). Clear-ing the RAM on these Sentinel boards would restore theticketing functions for a week or so. For the record, thelatest communication software from Konami along withSentinel firmware 11.61 or better has eliminated thisproblem for us.
The only time we cleared RAM on a DPU was the rareoccasion that we converted a coinless game to take coin(non TITO). The Sentinel basically reads whatever metersthe game has. If the game meters are zero, the Sentinelmeters are zero. This meter information is redundantbetween the DPU and the Sentinel - if one 'forgets,' theother will 'remind.'
This game started as a ticketing machine and therefore,had some ticketing-related meters (in, out, values, etc.)When it was converted to non-ticketing, the new ma-chine configuration had no ticketing meters. When theSentinel read the meters from the machine, all the val-ues were set to zero (as the machine had been cleared)except the ticketing meters - there was no machine meterto tell them to be zero! So the audit department now hasticketing meters on this game - they're not incrementingbut they don't belong to this machine. Clearing the Sen-tinel or the DPU separately wouldn't clear this meter -they had to be cleared simultaneously. This worked, butI think this is a rare case. 3- Who maintains your slot file (the game configurationin Bart)? I think most casinos have the IT departmenthandle this but our audit department does it here. Ifyou're just moving a machine (or bank of machines) fromone DPU to another, you'll need to coordinate with thisdepartment.
First, figure out which Sentinel IDs the games that aremoving will have on the new DPU - you don't want du-plicates as this'll definitely cause problems.
Second, take these machines offline (as in: disconnectedfrom the DPU). The Sentinel display should be in lowercase. Reprogram the Sentinels with the new IDs andkeep them offline.
Now have whichever department maintains the slot filegive the machines their new Oasis ID. When they're done,'bounce' the poller (stop polling, exit the program, re-start it, and start polling).
September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 26
Now connect the machine (orbank of machines) to the newDPU and run some tests tomake sure things are com-municating correctly.
The screenshot is from oneof our pollers if you haven'tdealt with it much. DPUnumbers are on the left-handside, the Sentinel IDs for thatDPU are along the top.
Note that, for example, onDPU 81, there's a gap of threein the series of used SentinelIDs (11-13). If you were go-ing to move threemachines from a differentDPU to this DPU, you'd need
to make sure that theirIDs aren't any that are cur-rently being used (11, 12, 13or even 23, 24, 25 wouldwork, for example).
It's not mandatory that theybe in order, but this makesthings smoother on the floor.The poller only checks whichgames are assigned to whichOasis ID in the slot file whenit's first started up. This iswhy it's necessary to restartit after making these changes- it'll re-check the slot file andbegin tracking the machineson their new DPU/SentinelID correctly. You don't needto restart the entire com-
puter, just the program. Beaware that any machines onthis poller will be unavailablefor ticketing while it's notpolling. Bouncing the pollerusually takes less than 10seconds, so nobody typicallynotices. 4- To convert a fiber DPU toa regular DPU, open the DPU(remove the two screws in thetop and take the lid off) andyou'll find a small PCB wherethe fiber optic ports are, anda 4-wire cable connecting itto the DPU. Simply discon-nect this cable from the DPU(or from the back of thisboard) and the DPU will com-
municate via the RS485 portnormally.
To convert a fiber Sentinel toa non fiber one, similarly dis-connect the fiber optic boardfrom the Sentinel (it's a 5-wire cable) and it'll commu-nicate on the "Bank IN" and"Bank OUT" pins normally.
We remove this hardwarecompletely from our DPUsand Sentinels when we dothis but it's not necessary aslong as they're disconnected.
If you're removing somegames thatpreviously required fiber op-tic cabling and want tochange these to normal wir-ing, disconnect (and option-ally remove) the fiber optichardware as explained aboveand add cabling similar to theother non-fiber machines(the daisy chain from oneSentinel to the next on the"Bank In" and "Bank Out"pins on the Sentinels). I don't know how familiar youare with the cablingscheme you're using, howfamiliar you are with editingthe slot file in Bart, manag-ing the Oasis IDs on the pol-ler, etc. so if you need moreinformation, let me know.
- Jason [email protected]
September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 28
Slot Tech Feature Article
BV Board Problem on anOlder WMS Upright
I needed to check some ofthe game options and do"paperwork" on this game(how we love paperwork).When the bill validator wasreinserted back into thegame, the screen went blackfor a few seconds and itstarted booting up. Whatjust happened here? Thegame is an upright videoWMS with a "CPU Next" mainboard and a WBA IDO 003bill acceptor in it. But whydid the game just reboot? Ireseated the bill acceptoragain, and another rebootstarted. The stacker box waspulled out like "normal" andagain, a blank screen and areboot. Next I was very care-ful not to make any suddenshocks or "light impacts" onthe game and it came up fine(I thought that was interest-ing). I closed the main slotdoor gently and the same or-deal. Earlier I had performeda RAM clear on the game, notnoticing that it had the "CPUNext" main processor (thenewer ones with the gameand operating flash cards in
Quick & Simple Repairs #29By Pat Porath
them) and had accidentallypulled the BIOS EPROM.Maybe I had bent a leg on thechip and it wasn't makinggood contact? No such luckthere. The main board wasremoved and inspected,nothing out of the ordinarythere. On the backplaneboard (some call it themotherboard) all of the con-nections were nice and snug.Nothing weird in that areaeither.
So, now what? The bill ac-ceptor had been removed andthe game was restarted with-out any problems until theunit was put back in or untilthe complete bill acceptorassembly was moved aroundor slightly shaken (notstirred). I removed andreseated the stacker box afew more times and con-cluded that practically anymovement of the assemblywould cause the game tohave a black screen for a fewseconds and start booting up.
Somewhere somehow it ap-peared that there was a shortcircuit but not all of the timeand not severe enough toblow a fuse. I wanted to re-move the bill acceptor assem-bly but didn't have muchluck with the screwdriver Ihad. I needed a differentPhillips tip than what I hadand already made one trip to
the shop to get the largerscrewdriver in the first place.While looking at the backarea of the bill acceptor hous-ing, there is a bill acceptorand stacker box "interfaceboard." It is small and rect-angular with some connec-tors on it. The bill acceptorconnecter cable located at thetop left of the bill acceptorhousing connects to thisboard, along with a few otherconnections. Once I noticedthat the board WAS LOOSEand with a good chance ofshorting out, the problemwas obvious. The missingsmall bolt was even sittingquietly on the power trans-former. As stated earlier, theplan was to remove the com-plete bill acceptor assemblybut that didn't happen so Ihad to stick my head as farinto the game as I could tosee where the bolt needed togo (wish I had an inspectionmirror in my tool pouch atthe time). Finally I couldsomewhat see where the boltneeded to be installed. Luck-ily, it was on the left side be-cause if it had been on theright, no doubt the completeassembly would have to havebeen pulled. Carefully, thesmall bolt was put into place,the game powered up, and noproblems. The stacker boxwas removed and installed,the main slot door closed andopened a few times and the
game was fine. Finally Icould perform my tests thatneeded to be completed. Ev-erything passed A-ok. Thetouch screen, bill acceptor,printer, it accepted tickets,and so on. It took a little timebut the game was backonline.
Atronic Emotion thatWouldn't Take a Ticket
We had a call to an Atronice-motion "Deal or No Deal"game that wouldn't accept aticket. One of my firstthoughts that came to mindwas the bill acceptor may bedirty and it would need to becleaned and calibrated. Thenthe slot attendant statedthere was a voucher error onthe screen when the ticketwas inserted. This indicationtold me it was a game soft-ware issue. While checkingout the software, and com-paring game options with the
one next door, we found whatthe problem was. In the op-tions, under the bill accep-tor settings, the "voucher re-demption" was set to "off" in-stead of "on." The workinggame had the option set to"on." It makes sense."Voucher redemption" set to"on" more or less translatesto "redeem voucher" wheninserted into the bill accep-tor. A simple press of thetouchscreen to turn on theoption and it was fine; thegame would now accept tick-ets. With the experienced slotattendant noticing an errorwhen the ticket was inserted,that made my job a lot easierto troubleshoot what exactlywas going on. If the atten-dant had only said that thegame wouldn't take tickets(and nothing further) it couldhave been a variety of thingssuch as a system communi-cation problem, a game com-munication problem, a dirty
bill acceptor, an invalid ticketor like we found, an incorrectgame option.
WMS Stepper Bluebird ReelProblem
We had a problem on a WMSstepper Bluebird where thenumber two reel would haveperiodic reel tilt errors. Theproblem wasn't all the timebut it was getting more andmore frequent as the daywent on. A different shift hadreplaced the "O rings" on thereel assembly, which madesense because it did have abit of a "bounce" to it when itstopped. Does anyone re-member the Bally 5000 se-ries games? I rememberwhen, after time, a reel wouldstart to "bounce" when itstopped and when badenough it would make thegame go into a reel tilt. Torepair this, the reel basketneeded to be taken off and
September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 30
the six small rubber O ringsneeded to be replaced. Aftertime, accelerated by the in-ternal heat of the game, therubber would harden andcause reel tilts. So with adifferent shift having re-placed the O rings in the reel,I thought the game would befine. It turned out, not solucky. Later in the afternoon,the game started acting upagain and I had to shut thegame down and look forparts. We have quite a fewbanks of the five reel WMSstepper games and only twobanks with the three reelsand so far the reels run verywell so I wasn't sure what tolook for first. To start, thereel optic was checked for anobstruction. The reel encoderlooked fine too. The connec-tion pins looked OK (nonewere pushed in) and nothingwas obstructing the reel bas-ket. Now, was the problemin the reel itself or in thegame? Back to good old"swaptronics." I tried the reelassembly from the game nextto it and the tilt cleared rightaway. I preformed a reel testand that passed too (with thediagnostic button, press un-til there is a number 5 in thecoins played display and usethe spin button to test). Thistold me that the problem wasno doubt in the reel assem-bly. Up in the shop I found amotor and a "reel controlboard." The motor wasmarked "may be good" andthe board was on the "goodparts" shelf. The motor wasinstalled in the game and itdidn't work very well at all(For those that don't know, areel motor is a small two
phase stepper motor that hasX volts to hold the reel inplace and X volts to roll it.An example would be 12vdckeep it in place and 24vdc tospin it.). Since the sparemotor didn't work properly,it was time to try the "reelcontrol board." While install-ing the board onto the as-sembly, the connectors werealso checked and I made surethat all of the wires weresnug in their place. Was thegame fixed for "REEL" thistime or was it going to be"back to the drawing board?"With the number two reelback in the game, it was timefor the test. Bingo! The prob-lem had been resolved; it in-deed ended up being a bad"reel control board." This isthe first one that I had re-placed in a WMS Bluebirdstepper so in the rare occur-rence a reel does start tilting,it may be the board. It was itthis case. I haven't heard ofany reel tilts on it since.
A Unique Way to CleanTicket Printers
The following is an unusualway to clean a ticket printer.I'm sure I'm not the only onethat has come up with theidea but I came up with theidea here at the Island ResortCasino. The idea startedwhen I, "Pat the Printer Guy,"had a pile of printers to re-pair. Some needed a goodcleaning, some needed aboard, some needed to beflashed, etc. You know thedrill. On this particular day,I had a few printers where Ihad tried the so called "nor-mal" things with no luck.They were DOA (dead on ar-rival). Everything I triedended up with the same re-sult which was nothing.
Then I had a FutureLogic Gen1 (a.k.a. Seiko) printerhooked up to the computerand thought of a different wayto clean it. The idea is to usea DRY JCM Bill ValidatorCleaning Card and a DRY
Magnetic Head Cleaning Card credit cardreader cleaner. Allow the liquid to evapo-rate or use a paper towel and soak up theliquid on the bill acceptor card and the mag-netic cleaning card. Use the "platen" leveron the printer to allow the dried cards intothe printer heads. Simply move them intoand out of the print head. Then engage theplaten lever to put pressure on the BV clean-ing card. Slowly slide it into and out of theprinter. More than likely, you’ll see dirt onthe card. Only engage the platen lever whileusing the BV card, not the magstripe clean-ing card because the mag card is too thickonce the platen lever is engaged and dam-age may occur. Once the printer was cleanedwith a Q-Tip and the cleaning cards, and the"clear status" button was pressed in the"FutureLogic" troubleshooting mode, theprinter came to life. It was installed into agame, and printed three test tickets great.With the combination of compressed air, Q-Tips, a DRY JCM BV cleaning card, and aDRY magnetic reader card, maybe you canget a few more ticket printers from the non-working pile to the "Ready for Installation"shelf.
The JCM part number for the BV cleaningcard is KWJCM-B1B15M. The "head clean-ing card" (credit card reader cleaner) can bepurchased through Happ Controls. Seewww.jcmwaffletechnology.com or www.jcm-american.com. Happ Controls’ website iswww.happcontrols.com
- Pat [email protected]
September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 32
Slot Tech Feature Article
Power-On TroubleshootingPart 2
Wells-Gardner D9300Black Screen – No RasterVisible
OK, here we go again. Hereis the same symptom as westudied in part one of thisarticle but with a totally dif-ferent cause. However,troubleshooting will proceedin more or less the samemanner as before. In thiscase, power-on troubleshoot-ing is essentially the only waywe’re going to find this with-out a lot of guesswork.
This monitor seemed totallydead. There was no EHT“static buildup” sound andthe missing EHT was con-firmed by the NE-2 lamp. Itdid not glow when heldagainst the core of the flybacktransformer. It didn’t flash atall.
You know the drill by now.The next step is to hop overto the power supply andcheck all of the output volt-ages, using the cathodes ofthe secondary output rectifi-ers as convenient test points.In this case, all of the out-puts were good. We had 57VDC at the cathode of D110,24 VDC at D112 and 80 VDCat D113. There are a coupleof +12 VDC supplies as well.
One of them is switched (con-trolled by the microproces-sor); the other (+12V_A) isnot. We measured the volt-age at the cathode of D114at +12 VDC. Perfect. We alsohad a good +5 VDC powersupply at pin 2 (the outputpin) of +5 volt regulatorIC102.
So the power supply itselfwas good. Was the monitoractually asleep? We dis-cussed this in part one wherewe found that a bad micro-processor was the actual cul-prit. Maybe we have the sameproblem here? Time to checkthe switched outputs of thepower supply. In this case,there are two.
Under microprocessor con-trol, the monitor can turn offthe +24 VDC power supply.Since the +24 VDC is usedin the primary of both thehorizontal drive and the EHTgeneration circuits, killingthe +24 VDC power supplywill shut down both the EHTand the horizontal output cir-cuits, the two circuits in themonitor that consume themost power.
We checked the voltage at thecollector of Q103. It was per-fect at +24 VDC. Of course,
this also told us that the“suspend” signal from themicroprocessor was good andthat Q104 must be workingproperly as well. We don’tactually need to check thecondition of the suspend sig-nal nor the voltages at Q104and quite frankly, the fewerpower-on tests we can make,the better off we are. We canperform our troubleshootingas quickly as possible whileminimizing the risk of slip-ping with our meter probesand shorting something out.
But the +12 VDC circuit wasanother thing altogether. Atthe collector of Q105 we hadzero volts (actually, therewere a few millivolts or some-thing, but it was, for all in-tents and purposes, zerovolts).
Now we’re getting some-where! Power-on trouble-shooting has led us to thepoint where we know what’swrong. We may not knowwhich component is bad atthis point but we know whythe monitor is dead. Theswitched output of the +12VDC power supply is used topower a few ICs in the moni-tor, as well as a host of othercircuits. It provides power forthe TDA 9109A horizontal
Note: Refer to the August 2007 issue for the sche-matic digram that goes along with this discussion.
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oscillator/EHT IC (IC302),the KA2500 video amplifier(IC401) and IC402, theLM2407 video output IC. Thisis the device that contains thethree video output transis-tors (and some other stuff) ina single package. It lives onthe heat sink on the videoPCB (the neck board) alongwith IC401, the video ampli-fier. If this +12 VDC supplyis missing, it’s no surprisethat the monitor has a blackscreen. We won’t have hori-zontal deflection, EHT orvideo.
Here again is where it is help-ful to have a good grasp ofREAL electronics theory asopposed to simply pokingaround looking for bad com-ponents. Let’s figure out WHYthere is no +12 VDC outputat the collector of transistorQ105. There are a few possi-bilities at this point. We havealready checked the +12 VDCat the cathode of D114 andfound it to be good. Perhapsit’s not getting to the emitterof Q105. We could have abroken trace somewhere orperhaps coil L101 is broken.That would prevent the +12VDC from reaching the emit-ter of Q105. A quick voltagemeasurement at the emitterverified that was all good. Theemitter of Q105 read +12VDC.
Just one measurement to go.Let’s look at the base ofQ105. Since this is a PNPtransistor, we know that thevoltage at the base needs tobe .7v LOWER than the emit-ter voltage in order for thetransistor to be turned on. In
this case, the base voltagewas around 11 volts so thetransistor should be turnedon. It has the proper basevoltage.
So what’s going on here? Wehave the proper voltages atthe emitter and base of Q105but nothing’s coming out ofthe collector. There are now
just two possibilities and be-cause I am an electronics ge-nius, I know both of ‘em. Onepossibility is that the series-pass switching transistor,Q105, is bad. For some rea-son, despite the fact that ithas a good input at the emit-ter and the proper controlvoltage on the base, it is sim-ply not turning on the way it
September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 34
should. Time to turn off thepower (hooray!) and test thetransistor itself with a DMM.
Or is it? The other possibilityis that something on theswitched +12 VDC buss isshorted and that Q105 is ac-tually working properly butthe output at the collector isbeing sucked to ground bythe short circuit. Testing thetransistor (with the distinctpossibility that we mighthave to unsolder and removeit from the circuit in order totest it properly) might requirefive minutes of work and en-tail a bit of risk of damage tothe PCB. Let’s check for theshort first because it’s easierand faster. With the powerstill turned off, we measuredthe resistance between thecollector of Q105 and ground.It should have been thou-sands and thousands ofohms. Instead, it was aroundfive ohms.
Now we’re cookin’ with gas.We still don’t know whichpart is bad but we’re closingin on the problem. Since wecan clearly see the short cir-cuit with the power turnedoff, we can finish the jobwithout applying power un-til the repair is complete. Wejust have to figure out whichpart is bad.
Since the switched +12 VDCruns to so many places in themonitor, we need to find aquick, non-destructive way tolocate the short (some techsstart cutting up the +12 VDCtrace with a razor blade atthis point, looking to seewhich side of the cut still
shows the short. This tech-nique makes me shudder).
Since the switched +12 VDCgoes to the neck PCB, andsince the neck board con-tains the only high-currentoutput device that uses theswitched +12 VDC in themonitor (the vertical outputIC uses +12V_A, theunswitched +12 volt powersupply that we have alreadyverified as good) why not “di-vide and conquer” the easyway by disconnecting theneck board from the chassis?With the neck board discon-nected, the short disap-peared from the collector ofQ105. We could still see theshort at the +12 volt inputpower pin of the neck board,proving that the short was inthe neck board itself. Takingan educated guess (electron-ics genius, remember?) welifted one end of resistorR425, isolating IC402 fromthe rest of the +12 volt cir-cuitry and verified the shortat pin 10 of IC402, the videooutput device. In this case,we didn’t actually replace thedevice because we had amess of spare neck boards,generously provided byWells-Gardner as part of oursoldering lab. We just tossedin a new neck board and leftit at that.
That having been said, I sup-pose that in this particularcase, a novice tech thatknows only how to swapboards might actually havebeen able to fix it faster. Sincethe neck PCB is, more-or-less, the only swappableboard in the monitor, the
novice tech might have actu-ally gotten lucky and been inand out in five minutes. Butit wouldn’t have been nearlyso much fun to troubleshoot!
And finally . . .Wells-Gardner D9300Black Screen – No RasterVisible
Will the madness never end?
Please pay attention to thisone because you may learn acool (and simple) little power-on troubleshooting trickhere. In this case, the powersupply was going into OCP,the over-current protectionmode. Normally, when theSMPS goes into OCP mode,you can hear a faint tickingor chirping sound comingfrom the power supply butthat is not always the case.Sometimes, the environmentis too loud and you cannothear the ticking. In othercases, the sound is too faintor even not audible at all. Itsort of depends on the designof the power supply and/orthe amount of current beingdrawn by short circuit thatis causing the OCP to kick in.If it is a high current shortcaused by a shorted horizon-tal output transistor in a tra-ditional monitor, it’s usuallypretty loud.
In a modern, digital monitorhowever, there are a numberof things that can cause OCPto engage. In addition to thehorizontal output transistor,there is an EHT output tran-sistor (drives the primary ofthe flyback transformer) aswell as a couple of buck or
Slot Tech MagazineSeptember 2007 Page 35
boost regulator circuits thatare also a part of the horizon-tal output and EHT circuits.In some monitors, a shortedvertical output IC will alsotrigger the power supply’sOCP. These circuit failurescan trigger OCP but it maynot produce the ticking thatyou’re used to hearing.
However, your DMM will tellyou what’s going on if youknow what you’re looking for.What at first might seem tobe a really confusing set ofreadings, is actually tellingyou exactly what’s wrongwith the monitor. We know(from this entire discussion)that measuring the outputvoltages of the power supplyprovides us with some veryimportant clues about whatis (or is not) wrong with the
monitor. In this case, whenwe started measuring thevoltages at the cathodes ofthe power supply diodes, wesaw some crazy readings.They were all at about half oftheir normal voltages andthey were fluctuating likecrazy. All except one, that isand that one wasn’t fluctu-ating much at all. In fact, itwas stuck at pretty close tozero volts.
The fluctuating voltages atthe outputs were an almostsure-fire indication that theSMPS was going into OCP,even though we could nothear any ticking or chirpingsound. Now, all we need todo is locate the shorted com-ponent. One way to approachthis would be to turn off themonitor and measure the re-
sistance at the cathodes ofthe diodes. As we discussedearlier, this should be thou-sands and thousands ofohms. However, in this case,we actually already knowwhich power supply outputis shorted because its outputwas close to zero volts whileall of the other power supplyoutputs had some voltage onthem as their secondary fil-ter capacitors would chargeup during the momentarypulses produced by thepower supply as it comes onfor a split second, recognizesthe over-current situationand shuts itself down aboutonce every second. Our badboy was the +55 VDC output.
Power off now while we con-sult the schematic diagram.The +55 VDC doesn’t go to
September 2007Slot Tech MagazinePage 36
the neck board so that sortof eliminates that as a possi-bility. No sense in discon-necting it to see if the shortgoes away. The +55 VDC onlygoes to one circuit and it’sjust the sort of high currentcircuit I would expect tocause a problem like this, it’sthe “boost” power supply cir-cuit that drives theprimary of theflyback transformer.There’s really justone part of interesthere, the MOSFETQ313. The +55 VDCgoes right to it,through energy-stor-age coil L304. Wehave discussed theoperation of this cir-cuit previously inSlot Tech Magazine.Anyway, we don’t re-ally care how itworks. On the sche-matic diagram, wecan clearly see the+55 VDC connectedto the MOSFET.Since it’s a big,three-legged partmounted on a heatsink (back to thesimplified approach!)why not test it? Yep!Shorted.
So in this case, thepower-on voltagemeasurement tellsus which power busshas the short. It’s theone with the lowestvoltage. Don’t befreaked out by all thevoltages that are in-correct and fluctuat-ing. Look for the out-
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put with the lowest voltage(it will be significantly lower.Close to zero) and follow thatpath to success. This tech-nique works for all switchingpower supplies with multipleoutputs and sure beats thetechnique used by some
technicians of unsolderingand lifting the cathodes of theoutput diodes in order to iso-late the shorted buss.
- Slot Tech Magazine
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