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Best Way To Drill A 3mm Hole Through A Pinball Ball.


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As above. Need a 3mm hole right though a pinball but I want to do it in house and not off to get the work done.

 

I thought pin punch a mark and drill with my drill press...Hmmmm, wrong. I've drilled hardened metal many times but this thing is round and chromium coated. I tried a Sutton tap as in tap and die knowning those taps are properly hardened and it should leave a mark the drill bit can bite into and once the drill bit gets through the hard outer surface, the drill will go straight through.

Wrong again, actually chipped the sutton tap tip.

 

Should I use heat to soften the metal?.

 

Open to suggestions in this one.

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200mm off cut timber , ,, use a 26mm spade bit drill hole 13-15mm deep ,,ball should sit deep enough in hole that can then be securely taped in place ,,duct tape ,,all over ball with pressure ,,once ball is secured use a dremel or buy a suitable grinding stone the cone type ,,tape should stop slipping ,,,it should give you a start ,breaking through the harder outer surface
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I drilled a hole in a pinball or tried too. It was near impossible. So I stuck the ball down with silicone on the come and get it trophy.

 

Gotta get a spoke off a bike rim through the dead center of the ball. Incrediably hard metal and it isn't just the skin like normal hardeneing processes do. I hit the side with an angle grinder so got down about 3mm under the skin so to say. Still hard as but they are ball bearings I guess and I'm now thinking not treated hard, just a very high carbon content they use.

 

Tried a diamond tip out of my Dremel set but no go. I'm now thinking resort to the blow torch and take some of that carbon out through heat.

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200mm off cut timber , ,, use a 26mm spade bit drill hole 13-15mm deep ,,ball should sit deep enough in hole that can then be securely taped in place ,,duct tape ,,all over ball with pressure ,,once ball is secured use a dremel or buy a suitable grinding stone the cone type ,,tape should stop slipping ,,,it should give you a start ,breaking through the harder outer surface

 

Having no trouble holding the ball, the center of my drill press has a hole that you drill down onto with a perfectly sized hole to hold the pinball. it is preventing the ball from moving but the drill is bending slightly and preventing the bit from grabbing although I did get a 1mm divet started. Tried the cone type grinding stone but it turned to dust. Thanks for the suggestions though. Got any other ideas?.

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how important is the appearance of the start hole Steve ,, i could suggest 1mm stainless steel grinding blade in an angle grinder ,, you could mark an X on it if you had a very steady hand and a very worn down wheel ,, smaller arc
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how important is the appearance of the start hole Steve ,, i could suggest 1mm stainless steel grinding blade in an angle grinder ,, you could mark an X on it if you had a very steady hand and a very worn down wheel ,, smaller arc

 

Yep I know what your saying. No chance of the drill bit wandering then and I have suitable grinding blades. Drill bit may catch in one of the slots but lets see. Appearance wise, I could make it the bottom so not really seen. The bottom of the ball was going to be countersunk to suit the nib on the spoke anyway.

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I've been wondering if it would be possible to make a knife out of a pinball?

 

Because of the high carbon content, yer, I would think it idea but I think an old file would be better. I'd hate to be the one belting a pinball out flat. Atleast an old file is already near the right shape and are also high carbon steel.

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Just use the old pinballs in a sling shot to defend yourself against Drop bears on your bush block.....good luck with drilling it, interested to see if you achieve your goal.

 

Irony is if I get caught with a slingshot, ( illegal in NSW), I loose my shooter's license.

 

Got a couple of alternative ideas to make this work. Could cut a slot half way into the ball with the 2mm angle grinder blade. It seems to have no trouble cutting the ball and mig the slot back in. Mig also works very well on the ball. Just can't guarintee I can get the pushbike spoke centered using this method or the "spatterguard" will stop the weld sticking to the spoke.

Alternative is weld the spoke nut to the side of the ball and thread the spoke into it...Downside of this method is I need the ball to spin sideways and using this method would have the spoke and ball spinning as one. Should still work providing the spoke can spin freely in the hanger that suspends the hanging ball.

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How do they drill the hole in newton balls that they use? Somebody somewhere does it !

 

Cheat and weld to the ball instead of drilling it by the looks. Won't work for my applications. I need the ball to spin easy...Not roll but spin sideways. Doesn't need to roll on the playfield but needs to spin on a guide halfway up the side of the ball.

 

https://www.pinballspareparts.com.au/balls/04-10005.html

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What are you planning to do with it Steve, or is it classified.

 

Nothings ever classified with me. One I need for my flipper strength combo tester. Allows me to try different flipper bat, mech and coil combinations. Ball hangs in front of flipper not touching the ground, just lightly against the bat. Activate the flipper and see how high the ball swings....(pendulum)

 

Three stiff wireforms hold the ball in one of 3 set places along the flipper. Tip of flipper, center of flipper and back end of flipper

 

Should be an accurate way of testing different flipper combos.

 

AND, a feature I want to try on a whiteboard....Flipper is mounted in a position, only the pendulum ball can be struck. The flipper has no power unless this feature is active. The pendulum ball is held back in a lane similar to a flipper return lane with a pin. When the feature becomes active the pin retracts and allows the pendulum ball to swing along the lane and across the face of the bat.

 

Your object is to use the flipper, (at the right time), swinging the ball over the playfield and striking one of the three or more targets mounted up off the playfield that only the pendulum ball can ever reach. Targets are not real close to each other so to get each target, you will need to use the tip, center and back end of the flipper to get all 3 shots. Possibly use a banana flipper for this feature.

 

Whiteboard...Not a good time for me to make a full blown homebrew. Boards, transformer and displays are just to costly ATM and I don't have a lazy couple of grand laying around but I do have what I need to make a good start and see exactly what I can do and try out different things.

 

I can power everything using a simple transformer and my mates and I can pretend what our scores may have been.:cry

 

Not perfect but atleast I have a testbed I can test some of these stupid pinball ideas I have that are just sitting in my head ATM.;)

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Could you take it to a local Laser Cutting company and laser cut a hole through it?

Added: They cut stainless, carbon steel etc.

 

Also Water jet cutting (aluminium, stainless, copper, hardened steels, rubber, plastics, composites, ceramics, glass, insulation, foam, leather and armour plate).

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Could you take it to a local Laser Cutting company and laser cut a hole through it?

 

Yer I guess so, just not prepared to pay what the charge would be to have 4 pinball get holes put in them. I think it would be insane the price on account it is a lazer and setup costs.

 

That's the problem with new ideas, you don't want to throw a shitload of money into them till you prove the idea is actually viable so I normally think of alternative ways to get a similar outcome. Once I prove it works then I take 4 new pinballs in and get them done professionally.

 

 

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Hmm, A challenge. I have a mill. Generally to drill a hole in round stock you use an edge finder to locate the dead centre of the stock. Skim the top ever so slightly with an end mill to get a flat spot. Centre drill with you guessed it a centering drill, they have a fat shaft so they don't wander. When you have started the hole switch to the intended size, use cutting fluid and drill slowly.
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You could rethink the design having the ball free & the target measures the power. You could use a slider target like on some EM's.

 

To stubborn to give up yet.

 

Ran the 2mm angle grinder blade through 1/2 way and it seemed to get slightly softer after about 6mm showing promise.

 

http://dRCOWRz.jpg

 

http://MesVcsC.jpg

 

I read these things can be around 65 rockwell so I'll try and get some of that hardness out. Might be able to get it slightly softer so I can drill it. That's the idea anyway.

 

Sat the ball on an old 1/2" socket extension bar clamped in the vice.

 

http://lJA7MzH.jpg

 

Put on my welding helmet incase the ball handgranades, ( it is hardened remember), and hit it with the torch and started heating her up. Not real sure exactly how hot I need to get it so trial and error I guess.

 

A nice pink, not quite orange...

 

http://JGRoTPv.jpg

 

http://sUnP9Ux.jpg

 

Now let her cool down by itself overnight and it should be ready to try drilling again tomorrow.

 

This is how I'm drilling it in the drill press......Tomorrow.

 

http://gazOZZp.jpg

 

If this doesn't work I'll try another ball but heat it up till orange. I'm hopeing heat will soften the metal. It's the only way I know to soften metal so open to suggestions on that as well if anyone has any bright ideas..

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Seems the heat process did indeed take some of that hardness out of the ball. A bit of a give away was being able to mark it with a center punch but the drill proved it...

 

http://aHHFqWd.jpg

 

http://pKxR2Z2.jpg

 

Hole is to large for these spokes but this gives you some idea of what "pendulum ball" looks like. I might actually go motorbike spokes as I'm thinking these 2mm spokes may bend with the flipper hitting the hanging ball.

 

http://Jg2OoT1.jpg

 

I didn't get the hole dead center either. Seems the hole in the drill press baase is not dead center. Not an issue.

 

I'll use some of @john17a idea.......200mm off cut timber , ,, use a 26mm spade bit drill hole 13-15mm deep ,,ball should sit deep enough in hole.....A bit of a twist though..

 

Clamp the wood undrilled in the drill press and use a spade bit to drill out the centering hole. This will have the hole in the wood center to the drill bit. Drop the ball in the hole, swap over to the required ball hole drill size and the 3mm drill bit "should" drill dead center of the ball..

 

Got 5 goes....

 

http://DNlEDzc.jpg

 

The heating takes the silver chrome colour out of the ball although the ball I used was an old Bally SS ball and they did have a darker colour than what is common these days. Either way, I think I'll paint the ball gloss white for the machine's use. Shouldn't be an issue as the ball is only ever hitting the flipper bat when struck or one of the targets if your good enough. The rest of the time the ball is just hanging. Paint should handle that life plus I really want to light up this first time idea good when it is active on the machine. The rest of the machines GI is off and only the ball, the bat and the targets are lit so there is no doubt exactly what you have to do.

 

Should be a pretty cool feature. Problem is the cabinet design has to change to be able to use it but that's taken care of. Just gotta build it.

 

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Just a thought Steve, but with the softening of the ball, won't the loss of hardness effect your test result. The ball wont have the same bounce/hardness as a regular pinball. It will effect your test results

 

I wouldn't think so because it will effect every test done on the tester with the same consistancy. On the tester it is just a weight being thrown and rather than using springs to create a resistance, it is gravity as the ball gets hit in a arc.

 

Idea is I can say change a coil or a link for example in a flipper mech and see what effect it has. There is no resistance other than gravity on the ball going in the arc.

There are 3 locations on the tester that are set where the ball sits slightly against the flipper bat before the flipper is activated. I'll use a micro switch to fire the flipper so condition of the cabinet switch contacts has no impact as micros are either completely on or completely off and I'll put a spark quenching capacitor across the micro contacts so the micro contacts don't build up resistance over time.

 

A couple of tests I'm eager to try are, is it true Bally SS mechs have more strength backflipping than Williams WPC mechs?. I can also swap around flipper pawls and see exactly what difference that makes.

 

The consistancys on the test bench are the loacation of the flipper bush pivot point, the angle the flipper is on before firing, the position and pressure the ball has against the flipper at rest and the resistance of the swinging ball. Knowing these are always going to be the same means I should be able to get some pretty accurate comparisions when different parts of flipper hardware are being changed.

 

 

 

To tell you the truth I see no reason why pinball uses such hard balls other than they are simply using excess ball bearings.

 

Two or more pinballs smacking into each other like in multiball or a ball hitting a captive ball and now knowing exactly how hard these balls are takes me back to my metalwork teacher at school warning never to hit two hammers together as they can explode because they are both hardened.

 

To explain why the welders helmet when heating the ball, it wasn't the ball itself shattering I was concerned about but more the steel the ball is amde of could expand through heating faster than the chromium skin on the outside of the ball and the skin could splitter off. I've seen chrome do that before when heated and didn't want chrome splintters in the face.

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