playing surface delaminating

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Re: playing surface delaminating
« Reply #15 on: December 30, 2012, 06:29:54 PM »

I realize this is an old thread, I just wanted to chime in on the topic as well.  We have a Twister II that we just purchased for work, and I didn't realize until we started playing on the table that the surface at the goal ends was lifted. We played like this for a couple weeks, but it's become a little annoying.

I have some experience with carpentry (having started my apprenticeship years ago), and looking under the plastic plate on the end (where the score pieces are mounted) showed that the setup should come apart fairly easy.  I've already finished repairing one end of the table, and have the other end curing right now, the first end I finished looks like it's fixed, and turned out really well, so I'll document the process here so it might help someone else down the road.

Note: these instructions are for a (roughly) 2006 Tornado Twister II. Furthermore, I have a bit of handywork experience, if you choose to follow these instructions, you do so at your own risk. I assume no responsibility if you destroy your table.

You're going to need these tools to complete this job:
    7-in-1 scraper (from home depot, etc)
    pl premium glue
    screw gun
    utility knife
    some heavy books
    some wood shims (like the ones that came with your table for leveling)
    latex gloves (for handling the glue)
    flat piece of plywood cut roughly 10"x25" (I used a 10" wide piece of laminate flooring cut to length)
    a drinking straw (a firm one) or popsicle stick
    paper towel

I chose the PL Premium after looking at all of the adhesives at Rona (canadian hardware store), I've used PL400 for carpentry before, and it's basically liquid nails, you'll destroy whatever you glue together if you try to pry it apart. After completing the first side, I see that PL Premium was a good choice, since it foams and expands a bit when it's curing. Be careful you don't get this glue on anything else, it will glue whatever it touches permanently.

Another note before you start: Even when removing the screws, I found that most of the pieces were stapled in place before they were screwed. Most of the staples can be pushed back into place if you remove the parts with care. Take your time.

Steps (for each end)
    Remove the screws from the top plastic plate where the goal pieces are mounted, there should be about 8 or so.
    Using the 7-in-1, gently lift under the edge corner and work your way all around the plate to lift it. Even with the screws out, there may be a few staples holding the plate down. Pry them up carefully, we will put them back in place later.
    Facing the side, remove the 3 black screws at the end for both sides. These screws hold the end panel in place. Go slowly and use a good bit with these screws, they are designed to not overtighten but can be stripped easily if you give your screw gun full speed and the bit slips.
    Move to the end of the table and remove the 3 black screws across the bottom, they are all that is left holding the end panel in place. Remove them carefully.
    Facing the end (still) slowly pull the end panel towards you. Do this slowly, it should be snug. You don't want to chip the MDF as you remove it, but with a little wiggling you should be able to pull it free. Set it off to the side. The Arborite plate will fall out from the back of the goal as well, put this aside and keep track of it. If you forget to put it back, you'll be missing that nice "smack" when you score a goal...
    You should now be looking at the ball return. I took this opportunity to clean the dust and cobwebs out of the end :).

Removing the goal board
There are 6 screws (2 black, 4 silver) and a couple staples to pry out to get the goal board off (The goal board is the board with the goal hole in it).
    On each side, there is 1 black screw located about half way down the goal board on the outside. Remove them now.
    Across the back you should see 4 silver screws holding the goal board to the playing surface, remove them now.
    There is a flat thin piece of panel board the balls roll down to the ball return hole on the side. This is stapled on the bottom to the vertical piece of MDF on the side of the goal. Carefully pry the 3-4 staples out between the thin board and the MDF. We'll push these back into place later.
    If the world was a perfect place, The goal board would just slide up and out now from the grooves it sits in, but if you look closely at the back where the silver screws were, you'll see there are marks from 2 staples where it's attached to the play surface. Proceed with the next step carefully...
    Take your 7-in-1 and slide it between the playing surface and the goal board right above the staple, with the flat part of the tool against the goal board and the wedge part of the tool against the play surface. It will likely not go in freely as there is not much room.
    Very carefully tap the end of the tool until you feel the blade rest against the staple. This is going to flex the goal board a little, and if your staples are close to the side, place the side of the tool above the staple so the tool is as close to the middle of the table as possible.
    When your 7-in-1 tool is touching the staple, you're going to strike the end with the hammer fairly firmly, the intention here is we're either going to break or bend the staple. Continue to strike the tool until you feel the staple give way.
    Now that the staples are done, you should be able to wiggle the goal board out. I had to tap mine a bit under the goal hole BUT BE CAREFUL, if you strike MDF too hard, it will chip.
    When you have the goal board out, have a look at how the staples broke/bent. With a pair of plyers, pull/bend/break them so they won't be in the way later. You want the area where the goal board touches the play surface to be clean and smooth when you put things back.
    Set the goal board aside, somewhere it won't get broken.

The instructions on the PL Premium say to use gloves, put them on now. Also, don't use too much glue as this glue expands as it sets and could potentially cause bubbling on your surface.
    The glue wants a damp surface, so I took a damp piece of paper towel and tried to wipe between the surface it's board as best I could. My surface was delaminating about 5-6" in the center, so I couldn't wipe in there very far without making it worse.
    Open the glue (I assume you have your gloves on), with your free hand lift the surface away from the board as far as you dare without making it worse, and with your dominant hand, squeeze a bead of glue under the surface along the edge of the board. I went as far from end to end as I could. I also made the bead about the size of a drinking straw (about a quarter inch wide?).
    Before I let the surface down, I took my straw and started at one end, and spread the glue towards the center. I held the straw at an angle so the glue would tend inward. As you spread, the glue will build up in front of the straw, which is fine, do both sides towards the center, then back out again, trying to push the glue in as far as you can. I also used a bit of a sawing motion to push some glue in a little further.
    Before you dispose of your straw, make sure there is a consistent layer at the edge of the board end to end.
    Take your plywood/laminate and slide it in the wide way almost to the 5-bar. Set it down flat, and then using some downward force (both hands) slide it slowly back towards the end. We are squeezing any excess glue that might be close to the 2-bar back towards the end to prevent any bubbles.
    Maintain pressure and slide the board almost to the very end, leave a tiny little bit of green showing at the end your board (like 1/32 of an inch). A bunch of glue will probably squeeze out, this is a good thing. Make sure you don't go too far, or when the glue cures and expands, it will glue your plywood to your playing surface, and that will be a pain to clean up.
    Leave your plywood in place, and start putting books on top of it all the way across. I used 3 big books, and 3 small books, and then a bunch of shims and things to use the goal bar and 2 bar as downward pressure. I didn't wedge so much in there as to bend the bar very far, just enough that the wedges were hard to get in.
    Leave to set 12-24 hours. The glue will foam a bit and expand, and it's important to have pressure on both the front end and back end of the board (under the goal bar and 2 bar) so when the glue expands, it is forced out the back, and doesn't make a bubble. Likewise, any areas that didn't get glue will get a little as it expands.
    Once the glue is cured, pull all the books off. I had to use the 7-in-1 and a utility knife to pry/cut my board off the first time as I glued it to the surface at the very end (the first time). If you do this make sure not to cut the surface.
    Once the board is off, any remaining glue can be removed with the scraper and your utility knife. If you get glue on the surface, use the scraper as it won't damage the surface, but the knife totally will. Take your time to clean up all the glue nicely, you want the touching areas to be clean and smooth when you put things back together.
    After you're cleaned up, slide the goal board back in and replace the screws. The thin ball return board's staples can be tapped back into place now. I also put a piece of duct tape around that so it didn't come off over time.
    Put the Arborite plate back in place, and put the end panel back on, replacing all the screws.
    Put the plastic panel back on the top, gently tapping the staples back into their original holes, and replace the screws.

That's it. If done carefully, your table should be just like new. I ended up with one little spot beside the goal where there was a bit of a bubble from the glue, but it barely affects gameplay, certainly nothing like the delamination problem.  The second end  turned out perfectly.

Hope that helps someone down the road, pictures to follow shortly.

Re: playing surface delaminating
« Reply #16 on: December 31, 2012, 01:46:36 AM »
As a follow-up to my previous post, here are some photos. I also want to note, without the curing time, the whole process took me approximately 3 hours.

Lifting the plastic end plates reveals staples

Outside screws to remove

Slowly wiggle the end panel off

Remove the 4 silver screws on the goal board

Separating the ball return

Breaking the staples on the goal board

Wiggle the goal board out

Slide the board along into place to squeeze glue toward the end

Maintain even pressure (as much as possible) on the board

I'm not bending the bars, but the wedges were hard to put in, there's decent pressure on the surface

The glue after about 5 minutes, PL Premium expands (kinda foams)

Cleanup, after about 8 hours, glue cuts off fairly easily and is quite hard

I put the staples back in, but taped it also to be safe

Done, and done.

In the pictures above, you can't see the delamination because I took them after I was finished gluing it, I still wanted to show some of the steps in case it might help someone down the road.

I also uploaded a quick video showing the end result, you can have a look here if you're interested.


Re: playing surface delaminating
« Reply #17 on: January 05, 2013, 07:46:10 PM »
How did you attach these pic's. having a hard time figuring it out...thanks jeff

Re: playing surface delaminating
« Reply #18 on: May 29, 2013, 04:49:05 PM »
Thanks a lot for posting your fix, Aaron.  I am getting ready to fix my Cyclone II that has a delamination issue as well.

Re: playing surface delaminating
« Reply #19 on: June 03, 2013, 12:43:53 PM »
FYI, the Cyclone II cabinet is built a lot differently from the Twister II.  >:( 

To remove the end panel, I'd have to take two of the legs off.  It only got progressively more complicated after that, and I wasn't able to get Tornado to send me details on the construction of the cabinet.

I ended up coming up with a slightly different fix.  I got a length of clear plastic tubing and a syringe that fit inside it.  I inserted the tubing as far as I could get it in.  I then connected the syringe to the tubing.  I removed the plunger, and proceeded to fill the syringe from the PL Premium cartridge.  I refilled the syringe about 4 times before I felt confident that I had gotten enough glue into the blister and surrounding area.  I flattened the field from the goal post in, then smoothed it out from the blister back to the goal just to attempt to make sure that I got glue everywhere.

I used a wooden chess board and a couple of stacks of Gourmet magazine to weight down the board.  :-)  I then used the rods to push down the magazines.  Since the magazines were pretty flexible, I just had to rotate the rods until the robot men's heads pushed down the magazines firmly. 

It looks like it has done the job.  The blister is gone, and the surface is nice and flat again.  I'm hoping this is a permanent fix, but only time will tell.
« Last Edit: June 03, 2013, 12:45:00 PM by melster »

Re: playing surface delaminating
« Reply #20 on: June 05, 2013, 10:32:07 PM »
This is clearly a factory defect i posted the same problem with a friend's T3000 doing the same thing obviously poor quality adhesive i have not found out if tornado did anything for him yet >:( when i do i will post it

Re: playing surface delaminating
« Reply #21 on: October 29, 2023, 11:53:38 AM »
I also have a Cyclone II that had a delamination issue.  Since I'm not a carpenter, I went for a less invasive solution.
I was able to reach into the goal and lift the surface up just enough to insert a surgical tube.  I got a bin of the clear gorilla glue.  It has lower viscosity and does not foam up like the regular version.
I got a syringe set with 13" surgical tubing online.  I started with water because the glue instructions recommended it. I lifted the surface enough to get in there and inject a little water.  I used a hair dryer to heat the surface and massaged it. I then took the syringe and used it to inject the glue.  I did 4 batches to cover the area where it let go.  Next was more heating and massaging the surface to get the glue to spread out as much as possible. Then  I put down heavy books and a heavy bin.  I let it sit for 2 nights.
It now appears to be fixed but time will tell.