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HELLLPPP!!! One kicker kicking my a**


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  • HELLLPPP!!! One kicker kicking my a**

    I wish they had a smiley face pulling his hair out. I have one lane where the ball will not get kicked in. It just sits in the door not even close enough for the lift or the start pad to be keeping it out.
    I have:
    1. Replaced the front and rear fillers TWICE
    2. Replaced the mounts for the front and rear fillers
    3. I have Tried: 4 different sizes of bumpers
    4. 57 billion spring tensions
    5. Six Different kickers in three styles from three companies
    6. Shimming the rubber strip on the front filler
    7. Raising the bounce plate
    8. Shimming kickers out and in
    9. Duct tape (OK so I'm desperate)
    10. Stripping the lane dry
    11. Beating my head on the wall for seven hours.
    12. Drinking
    Nothing makes any difference. The type of ball doesn't matter.White dot, resin, or sanded blue angle all do the same thing.I'm going to give the bounce plate riser kit a try tomorrow, but it didn't work on another lane that was doing this. That lane's BR problem just went away. Like I'm going to get put away if I don't figure this out.
    Thanks for your help.

  • #2
    Re: HELLLPPP!!! One kicker kicking my a**

    Change the carpet !

    odds are it's old,oily,or just stretched out,or ,,it's a Vantage premium!(I prefer the mandrel carpets).Make sure the front roller hangers are lubed well,& keep good tension on the carpet.I didn't have good luck with bounce plate fillers..& I leave the pit the way AMF made them(I don't raise the bounce plates).

    Too much spring tension on the kickers is as bad as too little. The light balls won't stand a chance !!
    I use one(1) ordinary kicker spring & one(1) linear spring ( that goes on the dizzy), hooked to the lower link on the ball lift. I also replace the kicker drive belts every other summer...regardless.


    • #3
      Re: HELLLPPP!!! One kicker kicking my a**

      hey jeff. well first off so long as you say that the ball does not even get to the starter i will take your word on that and we have to rule that out. well if so the next thing you have to look at is, is the ball spinning or isn't it. if the ball is spinning the kickers is doing it's job and the front filler is not.if that is the case the front filler pad is too hard. the best luck i have had with those is the jcp black one. i also contact cement a piece of hudson and only hudson white dist belt to the front filler where the ball makes contact with it. cut say a 2 inch by 2 inch piece and glue it where you see the shiny wear spots on the front filler to the left or right of the starter depending on wich lane the problem is on. this will help the ball get the traction needed to pivot it in. as far as the front filler rubber wich ever you use you should be able to dig your finger nail into it without any trouble, if you can't it is too hard. oh and don't use one of those filler pads with the extra flap on it that you have to drill holes in the filler and bolt it in, they stink. next thing is how is the casting of the filler where the filler rubber goes into it. i only use amf fillers. i have found that they are machined the best and even they need cleaning up some times. what happens is the grove in the filler that the rubber fits into is not cut out enough by the beam and the rubber cannot fit in deep enough and in turn it sticks out to much making the hole that the ball has to get into too small. if that is the case you may have the kicker slipping on the ball cause the larger part of the ball cannot get grabbed by the kicker. i like to hit them in deep with a hammer before installing them. so now if the ball is not spinning in the exit it could be what i just told you about the filler rubber or it could be that your kicker is too far into the exit. i am going to figure that you are useing the right bumper in the filler but sometimes even with the right filler bumper the kicker is too far into the exit so what you have to do is to put a 1/2 washer over the bumper nipple first then install the bumper. this will pull the kicker back out of the exit a bit, and in turn give the ball more room to get the big part of the ball into the exit so the kickers and filler can do there as far as the kicker springs go, whether you have a chain set up or the stock set up the springs should be streched so that there is no more than an 1/8 inch clearance between the coils and no less. if you have to put more tension than that something is wrong in the exit. i know you said that the ball never reaches the starter but if it does just touch it then go over your starter pitches they tend to bend over the years. you can get that perfect without even taking the started out in about 5 min. the starter should not sit out any farther than the front filler rubber and should be no more than max an inch from the bottom part of the cutout in the filler. as far as kickers go if i have a tempermental lane i always go with an inverted full contact red devil otherwise the red devil football. the inverted get the most traction but if you have a problem and a ball gets stuck they get eaten up real fast. but hey like slicks on a race car, if they get the most traction and you need the most traction it comes at a price. slicks dont last as long as street tires. hope this help you let me know. glen


      • #4
        Re: HELLLPPP!!! One kicker kicking my a**

        i came across a probs a few years back that the rubber on the front filler pad was way to hard to let the ball in. it was a hard blue rubber. I replaced the rubber with the old black one witch is softer and found that was the problem!
        hope this helps....


        • #5
          Re: HELLLPPP!!! One kicker kicking my a**

          If it is an odd numbered lane check the starter pad weldment and lower lift rod. The rod cover could be worn away(sometimes just turning the cover a little can help). Also check for loose and egged out bolt hole where the lower lift rod attaches. I also concure with the carpet idea. If the edge is rolled or the backing is worn near the ball door edge it may create a "hole" that the ball won't cross.


          • #6
            Re: HELLLPPP!!! One kicker kicking my a**

            I just remembered an even stranger cause for this.
            If you have very old bounce plates they may not have cross braces under them for support.
            They would only have 3 angle brackets attached to both front and rear bounce plates. If you have this arrangement the bounce plates could be warped like a banana.


            • #7
              Re: HELLLPPP!!! One kicker kicking my a**

              I know you said that you've tried different kicker rollers. Although it sounds like you have something else wrong, have you tried one of the ones from Murrey? They haven't failed me yet.
              If you haven't tried this yet, pull the front roller out, (so the rear can't move the carpet) turn on the machine & crawl in there with a ball. Be sure to pull the carpet back so that there's no chance that the rear roller can grab it & you along with it. It might give you a better view of what's going on & you can move the ball around by hand & experiment.
              What is the problem you're having with Vantage Premium carpets & kickers? I've used them on PBL's with no problem & I've started to use them with kickers. (2 different houses) Haven't seen any problems yet but I'd like to be prepared.


              • #8
                Re: HELLLPPP!!! One kicker kicking my a**

                I had a bad one..unravelled in a hurry... so,I tried the Vantage mandrel carpets...come out of the box LIMP !! I can change carpets alone in 30 -45 min. as they are easy to handle & so,far,have been great(Except for that slime mint green color !LOL.)

                We have our lobby carpet cleaned 3 times / , I have them do the pit carpets too as long as they're there..$5/ for me !!


                • #9
                  Re: HELLLPPP!!! One kicker kicking my a**


                  I must agree with the others. You need to look at your carpet and bounce plat braces as mackinick has suggested.

                  I can think of only one thing that no one has yet mentioned. This seems obvious but the paddle and or paddle tub can sometimes rub and become stuck in one area. Check the paddle for freedom of movement. Another trick with the paddle is to put on a new pump and adjust the eccentric to maxim. With the extra zip on the paddle it will push the ball out of the door slightly to give it another try. Adjust to reduce paddle power as needed. This is not really a fix but it could make you life easier.

                  Good Luck

                  Universal Revolutions


                  • #10
                    Re: HELLLPPP!!! One kicker kicking my a**

                    Thanks for all the great responses I learned quite a bit. It turns out that the new rubber front filler pad inserts that come from AMF are approximately 1/8" too tall. They are also very soft and seem to gather more oil. They also have a seam down the middle that may cause more difficulties.I put in old harder rubber pads in the 5 pairs that started giving me trouble and eliminated the problem. So watch out if you put a new front filler in.
                    Thanks again


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