Scared Stiff


After getting an Elvira and the Party Monsters, I have looked for a Scared Stiff. Finding a reasonably priced and still nice looking machine haven't been easy. But fortunately Taru again kept her eyes open, and found a nice game. We bought it together, and take turns keeping it.

Test games at the sellers place.

Testing did not reveal any major problems, one fuse was burnt, and the right flipper was a bit weak. The spider in backbox did not move. But I guess all this can be managed. Playfield looks good even though it is dirty, as always. The game was put in my van and brought home.

Cabinet has no big faults.

Playfield is nice.

Backglass OK.

Inside is quite clean, except the ball tunnel plastic.


Today it is time to remove parts from the playfield, and clean everything thoroughly. The playfield is not very dirty, but still needs a good cleaning. Over half of lamps are burnt, and rubbers are mixed black and white. This game uses black rubbers, and unlike some games, really look better with them.

Playfield stripped.

Light bulbs are quite dark.

An interesting surprise was found from flipper buttons. The opto boards have been removed, and replaced with contact points. No wonder the flippers worked so badly. The currents in opto circuits are far too small for the large contacts. We need to order new opto boards, but until then cleaning the points should help a little.



The playfield is now cleaned and waxed. All rubbers and lamps have been replaced. Looks good.

A wire gate on top of playfield is broken, but all parts were found during cleaning. The gate is easy to make, and a new one was made from stiff piano wire in a few minutes.

Broken gate.

Playfield posts are usually dirty from old wax. It's best to remove and clean them.

Posts are being cleaned.

The playfield is easy to clean when most parts have been removed. A couple of Novus 2 treatments, and a layer of Sonax wax gives a nice shine. Cotton sticks can be used where the cleaning rag cannot reach. Then it's only new rubbers and light bulbs, and the playfield is ready for cleaned plastics and ramps.

Cleaned playfield.


Novus #2 is number one in cleaning the playfield plastics and ramps, they came out just great. The skeleton ramp did look a bit troublesome at first, there's no way to clean it with skeleton in place. But with some surgery, the skeleton was removed and then the ramp was easy to clean. And the skeleton went back with no problems. The playfield is now ready, except the underside tunnel.

Skeleton removed.

Wow, it looks great!

The CPU board needed new batteries, the old ones being dated as best before 2001. Fortunately they haven't leaked. At the same time I burned and installed a new program EPROM, version 1.5 instead of the old 1.2. The spinning spider was fixed by cleaning all connectors.

Backbox inside.

Three dimensional backbox image is created by layering the graphics in three layers: the backglass, then some raised plastics and behind them the backbox panel itself. After some cleaning, the colors brightened nicely. And I installed new mountings for the other plastic, it was screwed in with some quite heavy wood screws after the mountings had broken. Mr Repairdude at work! :)

Under the backglass.


At this time, I must mention Pinball Heaven, yesterday afternoon I made an order via Internet, including for example the missing flipper button opto boards. And today the package was delivered to my door, in less than 24 hours from order! Very impressive!

So the flipper buttons are now working as they should. In the same package came a protector kit for the playfield holes. And already earlier I had ordered a skull pile flame kit from International Decorator Supply That is another company that delivers fast and without hassle.

The other flipper was a generic spare part, but now I got a genuine cap with a W logo, of course it doesn't affect game play but anyway looks nice. Actually, Scared Stiff uses special boney flippers but they are hard to find. A couple of microswitches were replaced, and yet a few needed adjustment, but now the game is in quite nice shape. Of course I cleaned the playfield underside tunnel. Then I removed the anti theft bar holders from front of cabinet, leaving some holes that need to be filled and painted.

Original skull pile.

With added flame lights.

Opto boards installed.

Some holes need to be filled.

It is almost time for some test games, of course the game is already in pretty good shape but not yet complete :)


The backbox spider was sometimes failing tests, and got disabled. I removed the spider unit, reflowed solder on all connectors, cleaned the position sensing opto and tightened the spider mounting screw. No problems so far.

Taru made a new sticker onto the mysterious crate cover, looks good! And now we finally played some test games, everything works fine and the game is really nice.

Vanha ja uusi laatikon kansi.


The game really must have a bad batch of micro switches. I have already replaced 5 micros, that just refuse to work despite of adjustment. Strange, how my older games have much less micro switch problems, even though they have a lot more plays.

Otherwise, the game has worked just fine, no other problems found after a week of playing :)


There have been no problems with the game. Today we moved it to Taru's home, and I got a Fish Tales in return. A little bit of change, always nice :)