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geofflove
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Hoopers Automatics Skill Score pinball machine

Postby geofflove » Sun Jun 14, 2020 8:38 pm

So I’m just about to take delivery of the above machine.

Looks to be in a bit of a state so a bit of a gamble really. I saw a couple of pics on this site but not much info. One mentions it was battery powered which I suppose is good to know before I tried to wire it to the mains.

Does anyone know much about these machines or know a source of info? It would be good to know what they were meant to do before I try to get it to do it although I suspect the principle is probably pretty simple.

Anyone got a rough value on these things once working? Piece of string?

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badpenny
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Re: Hoopers automatics skill score pinball machine

Postby badpenny » Sun Jun 14, 2020 10:42 pm

Stuart Dale, spinster of this parish is your best bet.
He renovated one a few years back, doing a splendid job and put it on mains electrickery via a low amperage modern transformer/plug.
I have a vague memory of paying him around the same amount I sold it for at auction. Which I believe was less than £400.

I'm sure you know the system of operation, but in case others are interested ...
The score dial is advanced a point via the operation of a single action solenoid.
The playfield is metal, as are the balls and the spring bumpers. They all form part of the circuit.
The spring bumpers are isolated from the playfield.
The ball in play closes the circuit when it touches a spring bumper, hence the score dial advances.
A simple but effective method as the ball is presenting a different conductive surface every time. It's suggested that only a mercury switch is more effective.
Hence it is essential that the playfield, spring bumpers and balls are spotless.

Interestingly (or not) Stuart Dale and I both (separately) contacted the vendor to identify and advise him on the machine at the beginning of his auction. Although I didn't follow the auction until the end, on the occasions I did check it, he hadn't added to his description.

Good luck with it, I hope you enjoy your treasure.

BP :didact:

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gameswat
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Re: Hoopers automatics skill score pinball machine

Postby gameswat » Mon Jun 15, 2020 12:11 am

That playfield description sounds a bit wonky to me BP. !PUZZLED! Sure looks like a painted playfield and not metal. Those spring bumpers should work like all the other pins of the time, the springs ending in a rod at the base that passes through the middle of a carbon ring in the playfield. The ball hitting the spring causes the contact to be made, no electrical circuit through the ball. What a pity Hoopers decided to make the most boring looking E/M pin of all time! :o :!?!: !OMFG!

cait001
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Re: Hoopers automatics skill score pinball machine

Postby cait001 » Mon Jun 15, 2020 2:31 am

when you get it can you please add pictures at IPDB? https://www.ipdb.org/machine.cgi?id=6500

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badpenny
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Re: Hoopers automatics skill score pinball machine

Postby badpenny » Mon Jun 15, 2020 6:18 am

gameswat wrote:
Mon Jun 15, 2020 12:11 am
That playfield description sounds a bit wonky to me BP.
S'possible, I didn't keep it long. My assumption was based on the one time it went awry. There was a buzzing and the score dial froze.
Turned out the bottom of a spring bumper had deformed and was in contact with the play field. Everything returned to normal once the contact was cleared.

geofflove
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Re: Hoopers automatics skill score pinball machine

Postby geofflove » Mon Jun 15, 2020 6:57 am

Thanks for the comments. Helpful info as my knowledge of these is currently zero. I was also thinking of popping a mains transformer into it if I can get it working. It would be helpful to know what voltage they originally ran on - 6v? 12v? Or something more exotic?!

I got it for £75 so we will see exactly what I have got when it arrives. It will clearly need some work. I just hope there aren’t too many bits missing as this could end play!

Here’s a couple of pics from the listing. I’ll post some more once I get into it but it might be a few weeks before I can get going on it.
0474B174-FB7D-4B20-B91D-5ECD9ED283D1.jpeg
A98A4126-C2CB-4DA6-B7D0-AA51F35C8833a.jpg

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badpenny
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Re: Hoopers automatics skill score pinball machine

Postby badpenny » Mon Jun 15, 2020 11:16 pm

gameswat wrote:
Mon Jun 15, 2020 12:11 am
Those spring bumpers should work like all the other pins of the time, the springs ending in a rod at the base that passes through the middle of a carbon ring in the playfield. The ball hitting the spring causes the contact to be made, no electrical circuit through the ball.
Well after my people talking to Stuart's people, I am astonished to publicly announce that I am corrupt ..... I mean correct. (probably right the first time!)
The steel ball acts as the switch to activate the solenoid which moves the score dial. It does it by closing the circuit between the playfield and the spring bumper.
Big S provided me with a copy of the diagram for the Spring Bumper.
Hoopers.jpg
BP !SMARTY!

geofflove
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Re: Hoopers Automatics Skill Score pinball machine

Postby geofflove » Tue Jun 16, 2020 4:54 am

Interesting. Looks like I might have a spring polishing job on my hands when it arrives!

So does anyone know what voltage it works on, or how to find out?

With no info I have obviously to check the resistance of the solenoid but without knowing how much power it’s meant to consume I can’t work out the voltage. Alternative, I guess I could just start with a low voltage and raise till the solenoid starts to operate (within reason!).
Or I can hope for a big 12v sticker somewhere on it! Hmmm.....

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gameswat
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Re: Hoopers Automatics Skill Score pinball machine

Postby gameswat » Tue Jun 16, 2020 10:01 am

As I said BP, the patent shows the bottom of the spring going through the carbon ring set into the playfield. If the ball made the circuit through the spring to the playfield, then why bother with that leg and hole in the playfield? And yes, they do spark sometimes.
carbon-ringa.jpg

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brigham
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Re: Hoopers Automatics Skill Score pinball machine

Postby brigham » Tue Jun 16, 2020 11:16 am

First one I've seen with a polished metal playfield.
Looks like it, and the ball, form part of the bumper circuit.
I wonder how well it lasts in front-line service?


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