The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 7, 7 Segment Displays

After much googling for the right size seven segment displays I decided to build my own. By using the plastic pieces from the original I would keep the same look and feel. Instead of using the old incandescent lights that constantly burn out and are specialty lights I went with LEDs. By using addressable LEDsContinue reading “The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 7, 7 Segment Displays”

The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 6, Wiring It All Up

The custom PCBs for my sensor assembly arrived some time ago. Unfortunate I messed up and put the wrong foot print on the boards for my headers. After a long pause to figure out if redoing the board was best or just use what I already have I chose to use what I have. InsteadContinue reading “The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 6, Wiring It All Up”

The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 5, Optical Switches

Analog vs Digital. Mechanical vs Optical. What’s better? Video game controllers went from digital to analog and back to digital that pretends to be analog. What does that mean? I don’t know. I do know that mechanical analog switches in Skee-Ball machines are not accurate. After de-bouncing the mechanical switches and still having double orContinue reading “The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 5, Optical Switches”

The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 4, The Ball Release

After about a week of working on the Skee-Ball Machine the scoring and ball counting parts of the machine are working. The code is stable and most balls count correctly. One of the major functional parts that is very important is the ball release. The balls are normally released by a solenoid underneath the ballContinue reading “The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 4, The Ball Release”

The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 3, The Code

The old control board for the Skee-Ball machine come in a metal case and fits in the top of the machine with the score board and lights. It comes form a time long ago before modern micro controllers and computers were available. It works fine for what it was for but uses a lot ofContinue reading “The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 3, The Code”

The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 2, The Switches

The Model H Skee-Ball machine uses Cherry micro switches for scoring and ball counting. These switches are E51/F51 switches: datasheet. You can still buy them from many places here for example. While they work they are horribly bouncy and prone to missing a score or ball and counting a score or ball twice. You canContinue reading “The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 2, The Switches”

The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 1, The Beginning

This all started sometime in the early 2000’s. I was either 19 or 20 and someone told me American Adventures was getting rid of their Skee-Ball machines for new ones. They were selling them for $100 a piece or $75 if you took more than one. Of course being young and stupid I convinced myContinue reading “The Skee-Ball Machine: Part 1, The Beginning”