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Lane intermittently cycles ball two away.


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  • Lane intermittently cycles ball two away.

    I've been trying to fix this problem for about two weeks now with the time I have to put towards it.

    A2 machine will intermittently cycle away ball two. I told my pinchasers to write down the pins they have to respot in hopes of possibly finding a common problem to no avail. (as far as I can tell, the problem doesn't happen with the head pin standing but the chances of someone leaving the headpin are low)

    Four Person League, Five Respots. 4 Person Senior League, Four Respots. Five Person Team, Five Respots (All due to second ball cycle).

    We run the Bowltronics Ball Detect setup which was the first thing I unplugged to see if it might be triggering accidentaly (When they were first installed they were low and some new pinchasers would get caught in the wire). Still would sweep second ball.

    Checked the CCD Camera and the Camera sensor. Both were fine (Doubted it was it but it was an easy check).

    I then noticed that the 4:1 was slightly high at the resting point so I adjusted the clutch. Still would sweep second ball.

    Took out the clutch pulley to check the pads, nothing worn bad at all. Cleaned them up, sanded them a bit, put it back together. Still sweeping second ball.

    Swapped out Clutch Pulley with my spare with new pads. Still sweeping second ball.

    I was able to sit down and watch it for a bit and catch it. Ball hits cushion, regular cycle, places down remaining pins for ball two, and then it starts the second cycle after about 0.5s of delay and sweeps ball two pins away.

    I by no means know everything about the machines, but I'm the only one around to be looking at it here. Usually from my experience it's a simple clutch adjustment and you're good to go. I've just been stumped on it and of course I've got to hear from every league bowler about their four respots in 24 games.

  • #2
    Does the Cycle Solenoid "Fire" to trigger the machine. If Not, then it is mechanical, not electrical. If it does fire, then it is electrical. You will need to start looking at the electrical components. TDM, Auto scoring, ect. From your description, I believe the Bowltronics does the triggering. You may have a wire intermittently shorting or a faulty board in the Bowltronics.
    Everything has to be Somewhere !!


    • #3
      I removed the Power Supply to the Bowltronics board to "test" it which I know isn't a full test on it. I'll swap it out with a known working board. All I know on the board side is that it ran without power.

      I won't be able to sit down back until Wednesday and I'd rather deal with the four respots than constantly cycling the machine for the next two senior leagues that I have.

      Thanks for the input though, it helps a ton on figuring out where to look next for a problem!


      • #4
        Again, you need to determine if it is an Electrical or Mechanical problem.
        Everything has to be Somewhere !!


        • #5
          Yes, yes. Agree with Mike but don't tell him that he'll get a big head. Watch the cycle solenoid and see if it is triggering at end of first ball. You eluded to this as a possibility in your post by unplugging the trigger. If you don't have time to sit and watch it, focus a camera in on the solenoid and let them bowl. Then when it happens, instant replay.

          Also take a quick look at the clutch latch to make sure it is seating fully under the pin on the reset lever. Due this over the course of several cycles to see if it's seating fully every time. If this is falling off the machine can cycle through again.


          • #6
            Clutch Latch is seating fully. It won't hurt to take a look at it again though. It was one of the first things I looked at after I learned of the problem.

            Unfortunately I don't have any camera I can hook up to it so I have to wait until Wednesday until I have time to sit on the lane and watch it with my own eyes.

            I agreed with Mike as well, since I personally didn't know how to determine to go mechanical or electrical. Was just clarifying exactly what I did with the bowltronics board.


            • #7
              As often as this is happening you may be able to sit on the pinsetter and hold your hand on the cycle solenoid. You should feel a vibration even if you can't hear the buzz when the solenoid pulls in.

              Also talk to the bowlers. If it is cycling first ball on its own they probably just cycle it again and don't tell anyone.


              • #8
                Does this only occur when the deck is full?
                Factory & Converted A-2 (US, Ger, Jap)
                Comscore ECT, Matrix & DuoHD
                Walker B, Sanction Standard, Original K, Flex Walker & Ikon
                Kegel C.A.T.S


                • #9
                  Just going to throw this out there.... Also agree with Mike, is it actually activating the cycle solenoid? or perhaps missing detection while going through the original first ball cycle. When your chasers get to the lane to do a respot, is the pinsetter waiting on first ball cycle with a full set of pins? or is the lane deck empty with the pinsetter waiting while on second ball? If you have a bad stabilizer, or a bad bearing in the deck post, this can cause the detector to miss standing pins, thus detect a strike. Also, if it misses and OOR detection, it can go through a strike cycle.

                  With a full set of pins in the deck, set a single pin on the 7 spot, with the pinsetter on first ball, and cycle 3 to 5 times (putting the detector back on first ball) to make sure the pinsetter detects the pin. Repeat the process with the pin on the 10 pin spot, then finally on the head pin spot. If it detects correctly, then check all of the deck pads. Once this checks out ok, place a pin OOR and check the detection and operation of the OOR mechanism.

                  Another possibility, are your pinsetters factory A2s, or converted. If converted, check the two cycle cams on the 1:1 and make sure one of the levers/bearings isn't bent.

                  If all the mechanical checks out, then move on to electrical. First thing I do is un-plug the bowlers reset button on the electrical box, just to eliminate that.


                  • #10
                    "Ball hits cushion, regular cycle, places down remaining pins for ball two, and then it starts the second cycle after about 0.5s of delay and sweeps ball two pins away."

                    Can't be detecting a strike as he said the machine set's the remaining pins back on the deck for ball two. A strike detection would block out the scissors so the pins wouldn't have gotten picked up so it's not likely a detection issue.

                    I suspect you may have just missed that in the original post but I just wanted to throw that out there so he doesn't spend a lot of time looking for a detecton issue.


                    • #11
                      Random cycling problems are difficult to diagnose.
                      I had bowltronics with our AMF accuscore some 20 plus years ago. I can distinctly remember that the bowltronics box that housed the emitter and collector was susceptible to vibration causing unwanted cycling. A ball or pin hitting the double kickback with force would cause enough vibration to cycle the machine.
                      Just a thought.......hope that helps.


                      • #12
                        One of the big problems with electronic triggering is "ghosting" which sounds like your issue. Bowl-Tronics is pretty simple, nothing more than a electronic reset button. Try this first 1. Change the reflector, they do wear out. 2nd change or move the I/R to another lane, see if problem moves. The I/R also gets weak and causes exactly what your problem is that you described. You can get just the I/R optics to rebuild your unit, but remember there is a left and a right one.


                        • #13
                          Again, you need to determine if it is an Electrical or Mechanical problem. You will hear the Solenoid "Fire". If not, place your hand on top of the solenoid, you will feel if fire just like it does every time to begin a cycle.
                          Everything has to be Somewhere !!


                          • #14
                            So, I was able to sit up there today will filling out paperwork.Finally during Game Three it happened. I watched the relay pull in and heard&felt the Solenoid pull in.

                            Ball comes in on Ball 1
                            Rake goes down, machine fully cycles Ball 1.
                            Almost as soon as the cycle is back at 0 Relay pops in and Solenoid Fires.

                            So, now I know it's electrical. As far as what I've done on the electrical side before is removing the Bowltronics triggering board from the machine to still have the problem persist.


                            • #15
                              We little to know a little more about your setup. For example, does your ball detection system fire the solenoid directly, does it trigger the tdm or does it trigger the shotgun which then triggers the tdm when the rake drops. Signalling the scoring is also not out of the question but you tell us what you have and we can go from there.

                              If it triggers the solenoid directly then disconnecting it should have eliminated the issue which you said it didn't.

                              If it triggers the tdm directly then we would need to look at whether the ball detection system is causing the issue or if there is a short somewhere else like in the ball return reset wire that is causing an intermittent short.

                              If it triggers the shotgun, providing you are using one, then it could be in the rake switch or again a short in that circuit and may not be related to the ball detection system at all.

                              The point is, there are a lot of different setups so we need to know what you have.


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