Repair: Squeaky Sega Rally Championship Deluxe
Recently my son had a few boys over and he was on the monster racing game, the Sega Rally Championship Deluxe. I noticed a horrible
squealing, metal scraping sound coming from the game as he played.
I jump in the cab and start to work the brakes and gas pedal, same loud metal scraping sound. Now I've had this game for 11 years so I guess it was due for some maintennance. I get underneath the dash and unbolt the brake and pedal assembly. Luckily, it was all one
piece and comes right out. Manually pushing the pedals I can tell the springs, gears and moving parts probably haven't been greased or oiled
up since coming off the assembly line, and that was 1995. I work in a lot of lubricant in all places and soon enough it all started
to sound good as new.
Cliffhanger Enters The Arcade With Space Ace!
First, a 20 year journey ends when I finally picked up a Space Ace arcade machine. This is the companion arcade game
released right after ground breaking Dragons Lair. Both featured film-quality animation created by Don Bluth,
which was then played back on a LaserDisc. The LaserDisc was the forefather of DVD's and Blu-rays.
I did multiple repairs to get the game running again, which included fixing the laserdisc player.
Next, I ordered a Dexter laserdisc replacement board which plays the original laserdisc images from a flash drive.
Although I got the laserdisc player working, the moving parts in them were prone to breaking down. The success of
laserdisc games back in the day was short lived because they broke down before earning back all of their money.
I stored the now working laserdisc player for collectability, and swapped in the Dexter to be the workhorse while playing in the arcade. Finally
I installed a Merlin ROM upgrade board which allows you to swap the original ROM code to play Space Ace, Dragons Lair and Dragons
Lair II from images on the Dexter.
Repair: Not Too Fly For A Simpsons
Last weekend I had some guests over that I was giving away some free arcade parts to. As the norm, the arcade was fired up.
Some time into the evening, we were hanging out near Simpsons and Williams row. Suddenly we hear a high pitched
screeching sound. I looked over at the Simpsons arcade and saw white noise lightning on the monitor.
Luckily we happened to be right there, so I quickly pulled out the game and unplugged it. The air now smelled like fresh ozone.
I pulled off the back door and temporarily turned the game back on to observe what I suspected was a bad flyback. There it was,
the flyback had a crack in it and was sparking. Yep, it definitely bit the dust in that monitor.
Vintage Vault Arcade Tour
Straight from the Vintage Vault Arcade! Love doing work Zoom calls from the bar. Yeah, that's my home office now.
Birthday Parties Down In The Vault!
March is a busy month for us. We have 3 family birthdays for in March, so the girls each received a party down in the Vintage Vault Arcade. That's a lot of girls, a lot of soda, a lot of candy and a lot of pizza. A few parents even joined in the fun close to pickup time. Enjoy the photos!
Repair: Road Burners - Out Of Time
When recently firing up the arcade, I noticed my Atari Road Burners attract mode sound on FULL BLAST. All my games have attract
mode turned off, so obviously something was not right in the settings. I go into the game settings, lower the volume and turn off
attract mode and restart the game. It goes to full blast sound again. So recently I had a Joust with no sound, but now I have a game
blasting full sound. I go back into the menu settings and this time notice a red message that said replace low battery. Well then, thats
definitely a problem. This bad battery not only caused all sounds to go back to default, but steering calibration and high scores also will no longer save.
At this point I'm thinking a standard CR2032 battery which I keep plenty of. Unfortunately I'm not so lucky.
A lot of Atari boards of this era use a yellow rectangle looking IC battery which snaps on top of another IC socket. Defintely a weird setup.
Strangely enough its called a Timekeeper battery. Luckily there are suppliers that keep these in stock.
Not as cheap as a CR2032 battery, but cerrtainly not too bad of a price to fix a problem.
Repair: Joust Goes Silent
Recently I decided to set my sights on Joust for some high score fun, and wouldn't you know it... the sound was gone... or nearly gone.
Let me explain. I could hear all the sounds, but it was almost at a volume level of "1". So I get out the keys, open up the coin door and
crank that volume all the way up to "10+". Still, I could barely hear anything.