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Author Topic: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.  (Read 971 times)

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struby

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Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« on: April 21, 2006, 04:00:52 pm »
I have a Betson 3 inch trackball with a mouse hack, everything works fine, but with every spin, the trackball, towards the end of the spin, turns to a more counter-clockwise spin direction.

Should I lube the bearings, I have speed cream drops for my street luge bearings, or just WD-40?

MinerAl

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2006, 10:30:59 am »
I'm not sure why it would start spinning any way but the one you pushed it, but lubing your bearings is always a good idea.

The conventional wisdom here is that WD-40 is for cleaning parts not lubing them.  If you have a product specifically for bearing lubrication, use that.  And let us know how it works!

RandyT

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2006, 11:21:37 am »
I have a Betson 3 inch trackball with a mouse hack, everything works fine, but with every spin, the trackball, towards the end of the spin, turns to a more counter-clockwise spin direction.

Should I lube the bearings, I have speed cream drops for my street luge bearings, or just WD-40?

This may be totally wrong, but you might be able to improve this by removing those little copper grounding tabs from under the bearings, as these angle the rollers slightly.  This would defeat the grounding of the ball, so do so at your own risk.  If you wanted to keep the ground strap, you could find some material to shim the other side of the roller (bearing) to the same height.

Then again, it could just be normal behaviour for a trackball with the 3 roller arrangement.  It's hard to believe that there isn't some directional bias as the ball begins to lose inertia.

RandyT

struby

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2006, 02:43:33 pm »
alright thanks guys, I'll let you know how it works out.

bossyman15

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2006, 05:02:31 pm »
I'd like to know too.
My trackball's bearing sometimes will not roll smoothly.

The same for my trando spinner, it sometimes made noises when it was spinning. I uses wd40 on that but it only helped a bit.

Which lubing is good for bearing?
My website: www.bossyman15.com Lots of arcade pictures inside!

struby

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2006, 07:01:37 pm »
Taking out the ground thing from under both roller bearing helped a little, I will try lubing it later.

quarterback

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2006, 12:28:07 am »
I have a Betson 3 inch trackball with a mouse hack, everything works fine, but with every spin, the trackball, towards the end of the spin, turns to a more counter-clockwise spin direction.

That's wierd.  So, no matter which direction the ball is rolled (up, down, right, left or some combination) at the end of the spin it'll go counter-clockwise?  Does it acually reverse-direction?  Or is it only if you're spinning it in one direction and it's like a drift to one side? or???


Quote
Should I lube the bearings, I have speed cream drops for my street luge bearings, or just WD-40?

Like MinerAl said, WD-40 is generally accepted as a no-no (and there are whole threads about it) since it's not really a lubricant, but a 'water displacement' substance.   

I'd like to know too.
My trackball's bearing sometimes will not roll smoothly.

The same for my trando spinner, it sometimes made noises when it was spinning. I uses wd40 on that but it only helped a bit.

I think that may be par for the course with things with bearings.  I've experienced the "brrrrring" with all the trackballs I've used and I've read threads about it here.   I think that some have seen improvement with use but, in the end,  you've got a hard object (the ball) rolling against other hard objects (the rollers) and I think occasionally you get an odd friction thing going on.  I've always wondered if rubberized rollers would make more sense than stainless steel.

Hey, I don't know if this is the issue, but I just remembered something from when I mounted my trackball (and I've seen other people mention it as well)  There is a point where the trackaball screws can be tightened to the mounting plate so tight that it actually compresses the plastic casing and will cause the ball to not spin smoothly.

I don't know if you've even gotten yours mounted, struby, so at this point that may be irrelevant to you, but bossyman, you might want to see if that's the case with your trackball.

Quote
Which lubing is good for bearing?

3-in-1 oil has been recommended before, and that's what I use.  But perhaps struby's "cream drops" are good.  But I don't know, I've not heard of those.

Taking out the ground thing from under both roller bearing helped a little, I will try lubing it later.

That's interesting.  I wonder if it is just a slightly off-angle issue and/or part of having a triangular roller setup.  Don't know.
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Kremmit

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2006, 12:49:56 am »
Bearing cream is pretty common in the skate industry, and trackball bearings are pretty much the same as skate bearings, so I'm sure it'll work fine.

As to the original problem:

Are your rollers worn?  I've noticed that TB units with worn rollers show much more directional bias than units with nice new rollers.  A brand new roller contacts the ball at one very small point.  As the rollers wear down, the roller makes more and more contact with the ball, and the increased drag causes the rollers to pull the ball's spin off course.  In fact, when it gets bad enough, you can feel that the rollers are worn without even opening the unit to look at them.  Load up "Quantum" (or MS Paint) and try to draw a perfect circle with your trackball.  With a nice new trackball, where the rollers have no wear, you can draw one pretty easy.  With an old  worn set of rollers, you can acutally feel the ball fighting you when you try to go in certain directions.  Give a ball like this a hard spin straight up, and you can watch the rotation turn to one side or the other.  The ball wants to go to the diagonals, because the friction with the rollers is least when rolling in those directions.  This is always true, due to the three-roller design, but it's barely noticeable with new rollers, and becomes more pronounced as they wear.

quarterback

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2006, 03:55:01 am »
Are your rollers worn?  I've noticed that TB units with worn rollers show much more directional bias than units with nice new rollers.  A brand new roller contacts the ball at one very small point.  As the rollers wear down, the roller makes more and more contact with the ball, and the increased drag causes the rollers to pull the ball's spin off course. 

Since this trackball used to be mine, I have a hi-rez pic where you can see the rollers.  While they're not new, they're in pretty good shape.  There are markings where the ball connects, but virtually no indentation.   Here's a pic where you can see (because of the bright square in the background) that the edge of the roller is basically flat, even where the contact-markings are:

I'm wondering if the bearings on one roller are a little rougher than the others, if that may be causing the un-equal 'roll'.  I'll be interested to know if the paste helps any because, while I've noticed that 3-in-1 does do something for rough bearings, I've got some that seem unaffected, even after soaking in it.
« Last Edit: April 23, 2006, 03:59:00 am by quarterback »
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struby

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #9 on: April 23, 2006, 01:25:51 pm »
Everything in it is in pretty good condition, I took out the static strip things and it helped a little, I will probably try the lube later on today, or tomorrow.

quarterback

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #10 on: April 23, 2006, 01:35:07 pm »
I don't know how pronounced the off-directional spin is but, something I was thinking of with my original reply was that you could possibly turn the trackball 180-degrees (having to remap the directions, of course) and possibly have some success.

My thought being this:  If (and that's a big "if", because I don't really know the extent of the counter-clockwise drift) If the ball is primarily being used where it's bring rolled forward (or 'up') and is finding itself drifting a bit at the end of the roll, then by flipping it around, you would be physically rolling the ball in an opposite direction to go 'up/forward' and maybe the slight drift would disappear because of the re-orientation of whatever was making it drift.

I don't know if that makes sense, or even if it would help, but it was a thought I had.... and I like to share my thoughts :)

Everything in it is in pretty good condition, I took out the static strip things and it helped a little, I will probably try the lube later on today, or tomorrow.
No crap, don't put your kids in a real fridge.
-- Chad Tower

struby

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #11 on: April 23, 2006, 01:42:42 pm »
i could try that, but in the other direction it gets a skip up becuase is isn't running directly into a roller.

Kremmit

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #12 on: April 24, 2006, 01:22:23 am »
That roller doesn't look too bad yet.  If one's somehow gotten more worn than the other, that could still be your problem, but the bearings are starting to sound more likely.

A good soak in gasoline or turpentine followed by a blow-out with an air compressor can do a lot to clean out a gunked-up bearing.  Hold the bearing by the inner race (the part with the hole), and point the air jet at the side, so it spins the bearing as it blows.  As it gets up some speed, it will spray nasty dirty gas all over.  Don't go crazy with the air compressor and the spinning- remember, there's zero lubricant in there at this point, and you don't want to burn your bearing out.  If you don't have the air compressor, that's OK, just spin it as fast as you can by hand and/or shake it around- just try to get as much crud disolved and out of there as possible.  Repeat until the gas comes out clean, then dry and re-lube. 

But no type or amount of cleaning or lube will fix a bearing that's truly worn out.  If a cleaning and oiling doesn't fix it, toss the thing, it's done for.

struby

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #13 on: April 24, 2006, 06:42:26 am »
Do they sell new bearings?

Havok

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #14 on: April 24, 2006, 07:26:31 am »
GGG sells a trackball booster kit and a roller replacement kit, which may solve your problem, but looks like Randy is out of stock at the moment:

http://groovygamegear.com/webstore/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=74&products_id=217

and

http://groovygamegear.com/webstore/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=74&products_id=271

One of these days I've got to figure out how to do a nice little link without showing the actual address. However, that would require a search...

 :P

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #15 on: April 24, 2006, 02:47:53 pm »
I am glad you posted this.  I have had the same problem with a 3" happs trackball.  It drove me crazy, so I ordered new bearings and rollers that only helped slightly.  I would really like someone to figure out a fix for this if possible.

Maybe I'm wrong, but I was under the impression that most trackballs (with 3 rollers) will do this because they are taking the path of least resistance.  In other words, they will want to roll in the direction of the diagonal roller at the bottom of the trackball.

However, I have an angled CP (1 inch angle over 22 inches deep).  It might be less evident in a flat CP, where the weight of the ball is more evenly distributed.

I would be surprised if anyones trackball does not veer to the left a little bit at the top of their desktop if they give the trackball a good spin upwards.

I checked for this problem on arcade Golden Tee machines, and so far all four I have checked display the same problem (but not affecting gameplay). 

I wouldn't worry about it too much unless gameplay is affected.  In my case it is not.  By the time the leftward movement occurs, the game has already registered the correct direction.

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #16 on: April 24, 2006, 03:17:27 pm »
Isn't the backspin one of the signs of a slow trackball interface?  I had a mini-pac and tried 3 different trackballs, a 2.5 inch ultimarc and 2 betson 3" trackballs, and all had a problem of spinning backwards at the end of the shot when playing bowling/golf games.   I replaced the mini-pac with one of GGG's trackball modules, and all the trackballs now work perfectly.

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #17 on: April 24, 2006, 05:43:58 pm »

Maybe I'm wrong, but I was under the impression that most trackballs (with 3 rollers) will do this because they are taking the path of least resistance.  In other words, they will want to roll in the direction of the diagonal roller at the bottom of the trackball.

I checked for this problem on arcade Golden Tee machines, and so far all four I have checked display the same problem (but not affecting gameplay). 

What you're saying about the triangulation of the rollers, makes sense to me.  I've never personally observed it, but I don't really play trackball games.  And when I DO play trackball games, they're ones where I keep my fingers on the ball all the time (like Missile Command)

Isn't the backspin one of the signs of a slow trackball interface? 

Yeah, but this isn't a 'backspin' problem, per se.  Backspin (usually) refers to what happens when you spin the ball too fast for the encoder to keep up (or something to that extent).  What's being described here is a physical 'drift' or 'off axis spin' that is physically happening to the ball.  It's not something that's being observed in game play, it's being observed in real life.

That is, if I'm understanding correctly.  I haven't personally observed this phenomenon.
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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #18 on: April 24, 2006, 05:58:00 pm »
I have a friend who had the same problem with a golden tee.  Turns out it's not really a problem.  the algorithm for the golf stroke (or bowling ball roll, or whatever) knows that trackballs do that and it has no bearing on the game.  Even if you swing up and right, the last motion the ball makes before it stops is up and left.  If you want to see some messed up trackball action, put it in upside down, and then reverse the encoders.  In a game like missile command, everyhting will work perfectly normal, but in GT everything you hit will go directly right, as it's expecting the ball to tail off the other way. 

Kinda neat. 

struby

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #19 on: April 24, 2006, 06:17:18 pm »
Hmm, well that makes me feel a little better, I still may lube the bearings, like really soon, I'll probably post tonight if I do so today.

Edit:  Thanks

sWampy

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #20 on: April 25, 2006, 09:09:47 am »
Yeah, but this isn't a 'backspin' problem, per se.  Backspin (usually) refers to what happens when you spin the ball too fast for the encoder to keep up (or something to that extent).  What's being described here is a physical 'drift' or 'off axis spin' that is physically happening to the ball.  It's not something that's being observed in game play, it's being observed in real life.

I only said that because with my trackballs when I had the mini-pac hooked up, if you spun the trackball toward  the edge of the screen, it would go to the edge, sit there for a little bit, then back up 1/4 the way back toward the middle of the screen, not sure why, but a ggg trackball interface fixed it.

struby

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Re: Trackball problem, ending spin...Help plz.
« Reply #21 on: April 25, 2006, 07:16:19 pm »
I actually noticed now, that no matter which direction it is rolled, it takes a preference towards the end of the spin to spin more towards or away from the diagonal roller.