What's New

2014-2016 What's New

2013 and Prior What's New

Check List When Buying A Pinball

My collection as ranked on Pinside (as of 11/26/2020)

#09 Stern Lord of the Rings
#11 Stern Deadpool LE
#17 Stern Star Trek LE
#19 Williams Star Trek Next Generation
#19 Stern Spiderman
#30 Dialed In! LE
#36 Stern Ghostbusters Premium
#37 Jersey Jack Hobbit LE
#46 Guardians of the Galaxy Premium
#47 Stern Star Wars Premium
#57 Stern X-Men Magneto LE
#72 World Cup Soccer
#77 American Pinball Houdini
#135 Williams The Flintstones
#162 Stern Avengers Hulk LE


I purchased a World Cup Soccer for myself. I will do a full restoration and hopefully it will look and play great.

With all the new games coming out and rising to the top of the top 100, my games are falling down but they are still great games.


I haven't written anything in a while so I thought I would provide random comments about the pinball world around me.

I was very upset when I found out (through PInball Magazine and then through Stern's Stern of the Union) that Chas (Shazade) Siddiqi passed away in August. He was always very nice and very helpful. He wll be missed. Prayers to his family.

The Stern Avengers Infinity Quest pinball looks great. It would go well with all my other Marvel-themed pinballs. (I still need to find a nice Iron Man.) I was thinking of a premium but will wait until I can buy one HUO pre-owned. The American-Pinball Hot Wheels also looks nice. Since Josh Kugler programmed it, I know the rules will be great and the game will be fun and entertaining. The Willy Wonka pinball also looks good. But what I really wanted was a game with a subway and three flippers. The Avengers Infinity Quest provides both requirements, but supposedly the subway slows down the game. Willy Wonka would be nice.

I saw a post on one of the Facebook pinball forums: "Can anyone recommend someone that can shop out <fill in the game> and is reasonably priced and is near <fill in the location>?"

The problem with the above statement from my point of view where I will shop or restore pinballs is 1. What is your definition of shop?, 2. What do you think is "reasonable"? and 3. What do you expect for this "reasonable" price?

It usually takes me between 20 and 30 hours to do a great job on a game. So if $500 is a "reasonable" price, I could make more working at Starbucks than doing a shop job. Don't get me wrong, I spend this amount of time or more on my games because I enjoy doing it. But if I have to do it for others, then I start feeling cynical unless the reward (payment per hour) is worth my time.

Also, when I am shopping or restoring a pinball machine, since everything is off the playfield, not only does it make sense to clean, but then the game usually needs new rubbers ($20 or quadruple that if you want colorful silicone), new posts ($20 or so), LEDs ($150-$250 or so), new plastic set if needed ($150-$250), color display ($369 or $399 plus postage), and other bling if desired (game blades ($80), shaker motor ($100-$150), game specific mods, etc, etc.

Plus, before I even shop or restore a game, I ensure that everything is working 100% which may require board work, new coils, or motors, or game specific parts if available. This could take up to 10 hours before the shop or restoration begins.

Finally, do you want to drop off the game or do you expect me to pick it up and deliver? That can add a few hours and require my truck and my escalera and my insurance policy that covers me in case anything goes wrong.

I do restorations for others usually in my shop. I do it by the hour plus parts and we agree to what extras the person wants. If I have a particularly hard problem to solve I will not charge the person for all the hours to solve it. This is the beauty of working out of my own shop. So the price is reasonable and fair for both of us.

I continue to fix people's games in their home and usually wth have a pinball machine that I am restoring for someone in my shop at any given time. I spend a lot of time on the phone and FaceTime helping people fix their games for free. I enjoy doing this but should eventually figure out if this should be part of the business model to actually earn some money for all the time I spend.

I watched "The Social Dilemma" on NetFlix. It is very good and very eye opening. One of things I decided never to do was to get advertising on my web site. I wanted this information to be available without ads (that I could not very well control). I was also thinking when I first started out on my career. I wrote a Blackjack program in 1981 for the Atari 800. I made enough money to pay for my first year of college. (College was not very expensive back then.) I decided to go into "important" work and do things to help society. I made a decision not to do gaming programs. In hindsight, I probably could have made much more money. But I was altruistic. Look where it got me. :)


My friend, Phil Tinney, created this logo for me. I have never had a logo for this pinball business. This looks great. I will have to try making some tee shirts and magnets for the car. (Actually tee shirts to wear and a magnet to place on the car.)


Copyright on the bottom of my pages has been updated. As I save new content, 2020 should appear. I know I need to freshen the pages. I just haven't had time to learn or find where I can do so. I designed these page templates back in 2004 and have not modified them much in 16 years.


This weekend I fixed two Jersey Jack pinball machines. The main thing I realized is I need the smaller 5mm x 20mm fuses. I had some fuses that I have hardly been using for the WPC95 driver boards. My next order for pinball parts will complete the entire set of fuses (fast acting, slow blow, and time delay) for all the various Jersey Jack Pinballs.

A customer called me and told me that the VUK (Vertical Upkicker) for the Wonkavator in the back of Willy Wonka was not working. He also told me that the left pop bumper was constantly popping but then stopped. I looked at the schematic and the left pop bumper and the VUK share the same fuse F706 6.3 amp time delay. I figured that I would need to look at the left pop bumper coil (26-1200), the fuse, and possibly the transistor, IRL540 (Q832).

I went to their house and the coil was fried. I replaced the left pop bumper coil (26-1200). I replaced the fuse and hoped that newer technology would actually have the fuse protect the transistors. They did not. I had to replace the transistor that controls the coil. Then the game worked. I was really hoping that the transistor would be protected. It was easy to replace but would have been nice.

The customer needed me to update the code. They had 1.09 WW code. 1.31 required a full update. This requires using UNETBOOTIN to create a bootable USB drive from their provided ISO file.The file downloaded but would not run. searched the internet and discovered that the newest version of the MAC operating system, Catalina, is so concerned about security that the file will not work. Finally read that you needed to go to a terminal screen and use a SUDO command to create the USB drive.

Another customer bought a Wizard of OZ. The right flipper did not work. He figured out the the flipper bushing was broken. He came to my house to pick up a flipper bushing but the coil still did not work. He replaced the fuse but it still blew. I asked if he used the correct fuse. He said yes. I went to his house. The fuse was blown. He rebuilt the flipper and put in a 5 amp fast blow. But the fuse was supposed to be a 5 amp time delay. I replaced it and it worked.

His right side lock does not hold the ball. I showed him that he needs to bent the toungue that goes under the mechanism to get it lower. He knows what to do so this is good.


I have been focusing on fixing pinballs. I added the topper to Star Wars. Not much more going on.


Here is a nice restoration of a Terminator 2: Judgment Day.


It is time to sell some of my personal games. I used to restore many pinballs a year. But realized I was spending my free time and life creating beautiful renovations for others that I was earning $5 or less per hour of time. It was no longer fun. However, I go all out on my own games to enjoy for years. My games are collector quality with mods. I just posted Star Trek LE and Houdini for sale.


Friday evening I helped a customer deliver and set up a Willy Wonka LE. It is beautiful. It plays nicely. It was built on 7/19. It had version 1.08 code. The latest was 1.09. I offered to load it for the customer since they were not comfortable doing it. They found a USB drive and I moved the Wonka_update directory onto the driver and.... it successfully loaded. But then when I went to reboot, it said 1.08-LE and got an error at about file 2300 or so. Their USB drive was small. I had the owner go to Best Buy to buy a 16GB drive. I downloaded the ISO file. I created the boot drive and loaded the software back into the game. Then successfully loaded 1.09-LE. No good deed goes unpunished.

In January 2019, I helped a person by email fix a Star Trek Next Generation they bought from someone else. (His opto switches were not working. I had him follow the 12 volt power and he found that the fuse needed to be replaced and wokred nicely.) He emailed me about a Funhouse he recently bought from California. Coils 9-16 were not working. I helped him fix this by email (the 3" robbin cable needed to be seated correctly).

He was having problems with multiple cotrolled lamps lighting and then the start button stopped starting the game. I describe the fixes here. I had an opening yesterday, so I was able to go to his house and fix the problems.

My neon light was no longer working well. I was able to buy a replacement power supply and replace the power supply and now it works fine.


Deadpool LE is a great game. It needed nothing out of the box and worked perfectly. This is the first time ever. I did buy a few mods but my choice. I bought the Stern topper from Stern. I bought the Deadpool shooter rod, plastic protector set, and Katana handle from Mezel Mods. I bought the ChimiFire illuminated mod and Hellhouse from the Mod Couple.


I went back to fix a Demolition Man at a customer that I thought I fixed a few weeks ago. A few days after I left the same problem appeared. What was strange is that I stayed longer at his house to test what I did to ensure it was working. So I had to fix it to ensure it was working perfectly.

The issue was that the customer would hear a thumping in the back at the VUK for the elevator to the craw area.

I asked the customer to go to switch test and leave it on. My assumption was that the opto board was getting hot and causing column 7 to go crazy. It did after about 15 minutes.

When I was back this morning, I changed out of the opto board and it no longer made column 7 go crazy.

But I remembered that I temporarily remove switch 77 and 78 (non opto switches) from the matrix by removing the wire.

I added the wire back. Sadly when 77 or 78 was engaged in switch mode, it caused the whole column 7 to engage.

I changed out ULN2803 (controls columns) in case this was the issue since the chip was socketed. No change.

I replaced the MPU to test and nothing changed. But realize that column 5 was not working. I thought it was working when I was there before. But now it is not.

I put the original MPU back in but first changed the 2 LM339s that were socketed. No change. Now column 5 was not working and column 7 was all turning on when switch 77 or 78 was engaged.

I looked at J207 (this controls the column wires). The connectors were discolored and corroded. I replaced the connector. The wires had corrosion on them. I had to cut off about an inch on each wire to get to clean wire. The wire for pin 5 which controlled column 5 was very corroded. I had to cut off over 6 inches to get to clean wire.

This time ost of the switches in column 5 worked (will explain in a minute) and switch 77 and 78 no longer caused column 7 switches to all turn off and on. Switch 57 when pressed woud register in test mode but so would switch 67. This is the opto for the Elevator hold. Which probably explains the thumping sound before since it thinks a ball is in the elevator.

I did not see any issues with switch 56 and 57. I ensured the wires were connected to the correct side of the diode and that the diode was in circuit.

I unscrewed switch 57 from the playfield and tested in test mode. Switch 57 no longer engaged switch 67. I don't know why.

I put switch 57 back and it no longer engaged switch 67.

Now, the game booted with no errors, no thumping sound, and switch 77, 78, 56, 57, and 67 all worked including the optos. The game now works.


I went to the Allentown show and enjoyed myself. I bought clear silicon rubbers to fix the drone area on Dialed In! I finally installed them a few days ago. I noticed two other regular white rubbers on the game and will need to buy some more clear silicon rubbers and take par of the game apart. This will wait for another day. I bought game blades and added them. They look great.

I bought game blades for Avengers Hulk and added them. They also look great. I paid for the grill decal that covers the black wood around the speakers and display. I forgot I ordered it at the show and sent the company an email. I just received them and will install them. I bought an extra plastic set and picked it up at the show. I added a 4MB ship over the flat one provided. The reviews on Amazon complain that the wings get in the way of using the USB drive in cramped spaces. Well. Duh! That's why I use it as a nice cheap mod in the game. The display is missing a dot or two in the middle. I will eventually get a color DMD.

I bought my first PinSound board that I will try in Star Trek Next Gen. I just haven't tried to test it yet.

I watched Willy Wonka being played. It looked ok but not enough to know yet. I played Black Knight Swords of Fury Pro. This game plays fast and is fun. I played Munsters Pro and Premium. They were both nice but not very impressed.

I really enjoyed Deadpool. Maybe I just like Marvel-based prinballs. I want one.

I have been catching up on my repairs on the weekends due to personal and business travel. Demolition Man is causing me problems. Hopefully, I'll get it working tomorrow. I think it has to do with the opto board.

I added two beautiful toppers for Dialed In! and Avengers Hulk from Tilt Topper.

Some of the fixes I performed include:

* White Water: Two Big foot optos not working but all other switches working. I "assumed" that the column was working since only 2 of the 8 switches not working. I thought it needed a new opto board. THat didn't work. I looked at the switch matrix (which I should have done first) and realized only two switched in column 8. The batteries were corroded. Turns out the chips that control column 8 were corroded.

* Tales of the Arabian Nights: The skill shot metal was missing the cups. The ball would mostly always roll down to the bottom hole. I bought a new skill shot metal and decals to fix this. It is amazing games would be sold with these problems

* Nascar: Left flipper not working. Since in a public place, the left fuse was blown. Replaced and it worked fine. Ball not popping out of garage. I can hear the coil but ball not budging. Top plastic white portion of the plunger broke off. Replaced plunger and it worked fine.


The Dialed In! LE has clear silicon rubbers all over except for 6 below the drone area. Frustrating since the regular rubbers are starting to fray. No big deal but always something to fix.

I picked up an Avengers Hulk LE. It is basically HUO but lent to an autism place for a while. The decal on the switch actuator in front of Hulk was coming up. The plastic behind HULK was broken but taped together and not very noticeable. I played the game and found three other issues:
1. Green lock lights not working.
2. HULK was not animated.
3. When THOR drop targets down, ball was getting stuck on top of T.

I tracked the wires from the green lock lights under the playfield. The red/white wire was connected to the key pin on the quick connector under the playfield. It should have been placed on the pin to the right which had the mate red/wire wire. Kind of obvious. But a simple mistake. I sent an email to the prior owner to state I got the game set up and was strange to find a wire connected to a key pin. He replied that he probably put it in the wrong place when he put the game back together. I was thinking "oh great, what else will I find."

Then I realized that HULK was not very animated. When balls go into his area, HULK should be banging his hands and twisting left and right. The actuator plate was not connected correctly. It was missing a 3 7/8" pivot pin that provided the pivot point for the plate attached to a spring to move up and down very slightly and trigger a switch. The pin was the exact width of the space in the wood with no play. So there is no way it could have fallen out without someone taking apart the assembly and letting the pin slide off and get lost. I asked the prior owner. He coud not find it. I went to Home Depot and bought a 3 foot 1/8" diameter rod and cut a 3 7/8" piece off (a little bigger) and sanded down the ends to snuggly fit. I put the assembly together and the HULK works great.

I leveled the playfield. Whenever the drop targets are down, the ball gets stuck at the T in THOR. I tested that the drop targets were flush with the playfield. I finally realized that a 2.5" rubber was missing. The two posts that should have had a 2.5" rubber on it (as shown in the rubber diagram) had small rubber rings on them. So again, put together wrong by someone and now I have to clean up the mess. This is an easy fix after I remove the Hawkeye ramp and all the plastics at the left.

I ordered some kits to get the plastic part that is broken and a decal set for the one decal.


I picked up a Dialed In! LE this weekend. I bought it from someone that successfully completed all tasks several times and only had room for a small collection. It was in great condition. The left flipper EOS broke the day before I came to get it. He called to tell me the perfect machine was not perfect. But I did not care since I have a bunch of the switches and it was a 5 minute fix. I drove to Ocean City, MD 200 miles on Saturday morning to get it. I left at 7am, I returned home about 4:30pm. I like the radcals. The playfield protector looks great when the game is turned on. Ok with it off. But it is probably protecting the playfield so it is okay. It had Cliffy protectors installed. I am pleased that it really needs nothing. I may add game blades since I like art inside the game, not black sides. I am very pleased with the game play and variation.

I also played my Houdini for the first time in a while. I previously made the settings a bit easier and I now thoroughly enjoy the game. I got 1.8M points which is the 3rd highest on the game.


I need to start letting some of my collection go. I posted the Theatre of Magic for sale.


I went to repair a Star Trek Next Generation I sold in January 2013. It was not booting up. Since I replaced the MPU and driver board when I restored it, I did not think these boards were the issue. When I turned on the game, the top LED and bottom LED turned on on the MPU but the top LED did not turn off. I turned off the game and checked all the connectors. Several connectors were lose. The ribbon cable from MPU to fliptronic to sound to video was not well connected. Once I snuggly attached all connectors, I turned on the game and it booted.

The game came up "Factory Setting Restored." This MPU had a lithium battery. I turned off the game and noticed that the bottom solder joint for the battery broke. I added 3 AA batteries and the game worked fine. I removed the lithium battery.

The phaser switch was not consistently working. I cleaned the switch since there was slight oxidation, but that was not the real issue. The trigger was not going back to the resting position, so the pin was sticking out and keeping the switch closed. I took apart the trigger and the spring was broken. I cleaned the trigger rod and sleeve and replaced the spring and the switch worked consistently.

The top flipper was strong but not going back to the resting position. I cleaned the plunger and sleeve and the flipper worked correctly as well.


I delivered the World Cup Soccer last Saturday. Delivery went well. I had the customer help me install the game blades. They enjoyed doing it. I appreciated the help. I tested the game and every thing was perfect except the ball got stuck in the left outlane. I added a new plunger that was slightly larger than the original. I realize now I never let it drain down the left side. I had the original musroomed plunger. The customer took it to his shop and sanded off the mushroomed tip. I replaced the new longer one with this orignial and it worked great.

I added a small repair I did on my Star Trek Next Generation. The left flipper was not staying up if the flipper button was pressed and held in. I thought that a wire would be disconnected from the flipper coil and it was. I resoldered it back and it worked great.

All my games have game blades. I use the Interior Cabinet Game Blade Protector Set made by Pinball Universe and sold by Pinball Life. They are great!

I also finally figured out how to get the dinosaur on Jurassic Park to swallow the ball. I had to adjust the limit switch below the playfield so that the dninosaur was leaning back farther so the ball would go back and down.

I finally finished the restoration of my X-Men LE Magneto. I added a decal around the speakers and display and added the color display.


Suzanne and I got up at 5am to go to McDonalds before I go off to Culpeper to do repairs. This way Suzanne ensures I eat something during the day. I headed off at 6am and got there at 8am. It was a Twilight Zone. You turn it on and nothing happens. I watched the LED sequence and the top and bottom light remain on and nothing happens. I replaced the MPU and the game booted nicely. Went into test mod and fixed some items. Main item was ramp switch not working. The connector was disconnected. An opto was locked on. A plunger was stuck up blocking the opto. The plunger did not fit well within the plunger. This was the VUK to the gumball machine. I replaced the plunger with correct size and it worked.

Put the balls in and ready to play a game. Ready to see TZ in all its glory. Start the game, plunge the ball, press the right flipper and it resets. Usually both flippers pressed causing a reset means to replace the driver board. So I change out the Fliptronics board. I turn on the game.... and the top and bottom LED on the MPU lock on. I unplug the ribbon cable cable to the fliptronics board and the game boots. I try changing the ribbon cable. No difference. I disconnect all connectors and added back until the game doesn't book J904 is the culprit. I realize that on this game, J109 on the driver board provides power to the the fliptronics board. I replace the driver board and the game works perfectly. Customer decides they want to keep all three refurbished boards. I wonder if the fliptronics board was good. But didn't want to spend the time to figure it out.

Also worked on a Party Zone. Ball goes up rocket ramp on the left, then does not get shot out to the rap. In test mode, the switch at the coil worked. Removed the balls and lifted the playfield. One of the wires to the coil was disconnected. I resoldered and it worked nicely.

Customer stated that voice was missing. He got it working by pressing the ribbon. I did it again and pressed in the chips and it started to work again. It seems to be consistent for the moment. He may get a new ribbon (without need for fliptronics connector since there is no fliptronics board).

Captain Z Barr was not tracking the ball. When I turned off the game and lifted the play field, the opto board was fried where it needed to be sent in for repair. His jaw was not moving. We tracked it down to the jaw rod being broken. These issues are not show stoppers to game play.

We also took off the left ramp to replace a light in the left bumper. While off, we cleaned and replaced lights and rubbers to the top lanes.

Added 29 photos from some work from yesterday for World Cup Soccer.


A few more tasks completed on the World Cup Soccer. I bought a manual riveter. Most rivets that I replace I can use a #4-40 bolt and nut. But most places I have to re-rivet are not in the ball path. The manual riveter. worked well and the rivets look good.

I have a repair on Saturday. Hopefully the weather will cooperate. Hopefully no snow this weekend.


I continue to work on the World Cup Soccer. As usual, it is amazing the little things you find that are broken when you meticulously take apart the game.

I corrected spelling errors on the 2015 World Cup Soccer I previously restored. As I noted, I should have reviewed the photos first so I wouldn't make the same mistakes.


2am and just posted more photos for World Cup Soccer.

I did two last minute fixes on New Years Eve to get machines ready for parties.

I posted a few fixes for Rocky and Bullwinkle.

I fixed a left sling on Tommy. It wasn't kicking. It turned out the switch was not adjusted correctly and the rubber in resting position was forcing the switch closed. I bent the back leaf back which then opened the switch in resting mode. Then when the ball hit, the switch registered and the coil engaged correctly.

On a Scared Stiff, when the game turned on, the left back VUK kept engaging the coil and popping. This pointed to the opto in the VUK. I went into switch edges test and that opto showed as open like a ball was there. So the game was doing the correct thing. It thought a ball was there and it shouldn't be, so it kicks it out. It looks again and the switch looks like a ball is there and it kicks it out. Over and over again. I tried to clean the optos. No difference. I put a camera up to the transmitter and didn't see a signal. I replaced the transmitter opto and the switch worked and the game worked correctly.


I'm restoring a World Cup Soccer for a customer.


I am almost finished with X-Men LE Magneto. I still need to add a decal around the speakers and display. But will do so when I add the Color DMD. But it is looking good. I should have the photo captions complete this evening.


I guess I never took photos of the X-Men LE Magneto when I first bought it earlier this year. So I will be adding a page in a little while.


Added a favicon on my page. Now a small pinball icon should show. It seems to show on Firefox. The little icon I created is below.

Starting to add content to the Modifications page.

I noticed that Firefox marks my web site as not secure. It says it is not secure if you submit passwords, messages, credit cards, etc. Considering that my site NEVER asks for passwords, you can't send messages, and I DO NOT ACCEPT credit cards, I believe my web site is pretty secure.


Added a Modifications page. Nothing is there yet but an introduction section. But this made me need to clean up the web site. I changed 2010-2017 to 2010-2019 on the copyright on every page. This means going to my template pages, propagating to the sub-template pages and opening each document to save it so the change shows. Busy work but gives me a chance to review all the pages. I also added a menu selection under contacts/more for modifications.

I removed some listings from prior York shows since I don't have the parts anymore.

I removed the "Boards for Sale" page. I had some extras that I would occasionally sell as a convenience for local people or other repair people. Rottendog was sold and they will not allow me to buy wholesale anymore since they want to protect their distributors. I understand this. But I was also buying a lot of boards from them for use when I repaired. I still recommend them (and Ksarcade.net as the distributor). If I got a dollar for every reference that I provided, I would not be a millionaire. I did not make them millionaires. But I would probably be a few thousand dollars richer. I still need to buy boards but I now choose to repair the boards I have and buy less of their boards. I removed this since I don't really want to be in the business of selling boards. My friends know where to find me if they need a board and I have one.

I updated my links page with new sites I use and removed sites that are no longer in business.


A few weeks ago I went to a customer's house to fix a "Star Wars" pinball. I asked the customer if it was a data east and they said yes. I was at their house a few years ago fixing pinballs but for some reason I did not note what games they had. (They were only 15 minutes from me.)

I came to the house and they noted they had two other games that I fixed in the past that they have since sold. (They didn't remember what they were.) I looked over at the "Star Wars" game and it was a "Star Trek The Next Generation." I remember now that they had it but it was "working" so I never worked on it before.

Since I was expecting a Star Wars, I did not have any of my boards for STTNG. I turned on the game and looked at the switch matrix. None of the optos were working. I checked the driver board. LED7 was lit so the 12 volt circuit was working. I took out the balls and lifted the play field. The 16 opto board was very fried at the capacitor near a connector. (I meant to take a photo but forgot.) I thought I had a 16 opto board I bought years ago but all my WPC boards were home. So I drove home to get the boards and didn't have it anymore. I think I may have sold it a while ago. So I had to drive back to close the game, get the 16 opto board, and close up the game.

I sent out the board since I wanted it fixed 100% and I am busy doing other things (like working full time to really earn a living). I told the people that I do not know when it will be returned and it could be a while.

They called me around 12/16 or so since they were having a party on 12/22 [yesterday]. I called my friend to see if he can work on it sooner and send back. A few days later he texts me to tell me he sent it back. It arrived on Friday 12/21. I called them and told them I can come Friday evening. I was hoping for a really quick install so I can run home, exercise and eat.

I installed the repaired board and the game worked. I started playing the game. It worked great. But then it sent out another ball. Strange. I kept playing and it kept sending out balls. I knew something was wrong with the trough optos.

In switch test mode, the trough jam was turning on and off. Since I didn't have a spare trough transmitter board, I replaced the jam opto transmitter but the error remained. We took apart the apron/arch and removed the trough to get to the receiver opto board. I replaced this board and the game worked perfectly.

It turns out that the owner told me that the game was always shooting out extra balls and just thought this was normal. Which probably explained why the owner did not understand why I was trying to fix something that was not broken. He understood what was happening once I explained it and it made sense to him. So another example of fixing a game that probably never worked properly for this customer.


Here are some items I posted to Facebook that I should share on my web page.

My Lord of the Rings lit game blades are great but keep falling down. The tape that came with it was just around the outside. As shown in the photos below, I added more double sided tape to the right blade.

I also use Pinball Universe's blade protectors as shown below to protect the blades.

Hopefully enough double sided tape on this to stay up.

This is the double sided tape I used.

Below the blade is placed back into the game.

I put the right blade protector on to lower the play field.

The right blade is back in and turned on.

While playing X-Men, the ball got lost. Note that the left side of the game (lower part in the photo below) is missing the bolt and nut to hold the gate to the post. But also note that the hole I need to screw is covered by a clear plastic. I have a lot of mods I will be adding. So below is the "quick fix".

I'll use a ratchet tie to align the holes temporarily.

The gate is attached to the post. The balls should no longer get stuck. (Photo is taken with the play field raised on the service legs so the balls all rolled to the back.)

I bought a pinball topper from Tilttoper.com for X-Men. It looks great!

(Interesting how photo shop messed up the picture below at the bottom...)

Stan Lee past away on November 12, 2018. Here was my tribute photo to Stan. I wish I owned all the Marvel pinballs.

I bought HD glass from Stern. Here is Lord of the Rings below an LED florescent light with a lot of glare.

Here's the same game with the HD glass. It is much better. The glare shows in the photo but cannot be seen by the player standing in front of the game.



Lord of the Rings has the Stern HD glass. Hobbit has Invisiglass.

Before I went to Europe, I fixed a Dracula and was working on a Jurassic Park that a customer brought by. Before I left on vacation, I finished the Dracula. It was working perfectly. They took it home on the back of a flat truck attached to their SUV. In hindsight, it probably shook the game apart. They set up the game and played it and then came back after dinner and played again and it just stopped.

I cannot go on vacation knowing that a perfectly working machine is not working. So I had to drive there (1.5 hours each way) and fix it. Part of going there was that I felt an obligation to get it working knowing that the customer could probably not do so. It turned out that a switch fell off the game and swung into a coil and shorted the 12 volt opto circuit and fried the opto board. I replaced the opto board but the game still did not work. I replaced the driver board and it worked. That was unusual that the problem would get all the way to the driver board. They will (and did) buy a new opto board so I will get mine back. I had to cover the cost of the driver board, my 2 hours and driving. This is what makes this hobby not so fun. I want to be fair but feel like I'm losing my life (or time in my life) a little at a time.

I drove a few miles to a gas station and got the "dreaded call" from the customer. The game was resetting. I drove back. Every thing was good. I thought I followed most of the steps in the pin wiki about ensuring that connectors were tight, ground was good, it was a repaired board so pretty much trusted all the solder flowed, etc. I added the Kahr daughter board to the MPU which uses the 12 volt circuit to make 5 volts. Was there 30 minutes playing it and left.

I came back from vacation and they told me the game has been constantly resetting. So I don't know if there is an issue at their home or something is still screwed up from the switch hitting the coil.

I provided them the pinwiki for resetting and highlighted several items, including using a different extension cord, tightening screws on the boards, reseating connectors, looking at the Thermistor (I have never looked or replaced this). They will try what I asked them to do since they are capable with electrical stuff. They said their outlets were providing 116-119 volts.

I want them to bring the game back to me so I do not have to drive there. This way I can see if it worked in my house and go from there.

I did fix the Jurassic Park. I have been playing it extensively and it plays great. I am afraid to get it back to them until we work out the power issue.

My first Data East game was Last Action Hero. So the sound effects in the game are associated to Last Action Hero. What I realize playing other Data East games is the same sound effects and music are used in other games (like Jurassic Park). So it feels cheap and not authentic to the theme. Which is probably why I don't enjoy playing or owning Data East games anymore.


I watched a cute video on NBC news this evening of a bear teaching her cub to climb a mountain. The cub almost makes it up the mountain and slides back down. The cub tries again and fails. Finally, the cub climbs the mountain and walks away with her mother.

Given today's world, I am surprised the mother bear didn't get arrested by social services for not coddling her baby and picking up the cub. I am also surprised a group of people didn't come to the cub's rescue by assisting the bear up the mountain.

Of course, it is great that the bear taught her cub how to climb and survive in the real world. Maybe this is a lesson why younger adults cannot do well today based on the coddling they had when the grew up.

There was also a story about spanking children and it was not good for the child. Instead, we have a generation of kids that are spoiled and got everything they asked for. When they misbehaved, they were "reasoned with". These are unreasonable kids that need to understand consequences. They were unreasonable as children and many grew up to be unreasonable as adults (see my flame sometime below on what I think of participation trophies). Obviously beating kids is not good, but a light smack (or fear of a smack) teaches most kids right from wrong and helps them adjust to real world situations as they get older. Do these people that do these studies have children and live in the real world?

There were a few subjects in high school that my son was not good at. One of the most important lessons I think I taught him was, "it doesn't matter if you are right or have a different way to do something, just do what the teacher wants (exactly as the teacher wants) and pass the class. In the real world, you may have this occur sometimes with bad managers or just bad situations. Of course, never do something that is wrong or against your morals. But if it really doesn't matter, choose your fights and move on."

In math class, they were doing the new stupid math (common core or whatever they call it). He did not understand it. I am pretty good at math and didn't understand it. It was division. I showed him how to do long division. He understood. It provided the correct answers. And the teacher failed him on every question. I called the teacher (since I felt like a failure too) and explained that he did not understand it and no one at school would take the time to work with him. Given I had to do it and I did not know common core and didn't understand why it was so complicated and unintuitive, I explained to him what I knew in a way that made sense and worked. In the end he had to learn it the teacher's way. I told him that in the real world, first of all you would be using spreadsheets, Quicken, and calculators. But I also ensured that he needs to know how to do it himself. That no matter what way he does it, as long as it makes sense to him and gets the correct results, it doesn't matter.

He was basically not good at math. I told him that as long as he could keep his checkbook balanced and provide his patients with the correct dosage of medicine, that is all he would need to know.

Finally, my Peloton class had rap music with inappropriate lyrics. It didn't bother me. I can get past this. But listening to some of the stuff, I want to know why it is okay for someone to say something inappropriate and it is okay. But if someone else says something similar, usually in the context of "what not to say", it can affect or ruin their career.

The logic and common sense in this world seems to be disappearing and I don't know why. While on vacation in Europe, it was interesting to hear other people talk about hangups and silliness that is occurring in the USA and how their country does not have to deal with it.

I will now step off my soap box for the evening.


Fixing typos on my Ghostbusters, STTNG, and Star Wars pages. Amazing that no matter how much I think I found all the typos, they keep popping up.

I am waiting for a CPU to come back to finish fixing a Jurassic Park in my house for a customer. Then I will start to work on my games.


Whenever I have to go to Maryland, I am very careful since every small town seems to use photo tickets to generate revenue. I would like to say they do it to save lives, but in my opinion, they do it to add revenue. I find myself looking at my speedometer more often to stay at the speed limit. It probably makes me a bit less safe since I am worried about my speed. I try to stay at the speed limit or a mile or two above. But I am not sure how much tolerance there is, so I am probably annoying all the local drivers that know how fast they can drive.

I worked on a Fire! today. The person told me the ball was not always going to the plunger lane. I had the coil, transistors, new board if needed, springs, etc. I did not think to bring the assembly that the plunger pivots on to actually push the ball to the plunger lane. The one on the game had the pivot rod was lose on the bracket. This was the problem. So I will have the person buy the bracket and I will help them install it by using Facetime when it comes in. It is just 4 bolts to remove the bracket for the coil. Then 3 bolts to remove the problem pivot assembly and put on the new one. Then reinstall the coil bracket. Then the plunger should work fine.

I'm working on improving the Houdini pinball. I bent the bottom left of the key lane left side guide to stop the ball from falling straight down the middle. This makes the games better and not lose balls on cheap drains. I adjusted the flipper coils to make them 1 less powerful. This allows the ball to go into the stage more often. I still have to adjust the flippers a bit lower, and fix the scoop pop out. I am having better games and enjoying it more now.

I ordered superbands for several of my games that I will replace as I add Cliffy protectors (on order). For X-men, I bought some mods I will add.


Wow. I haven't posted in a while. We had about 50 people from work over on Saturday for a pinball party. My 10 games played beautifully with no issues. Everyone had fun. I was impressed that balls did not get stuck.

As I mentioned below, I am concentrating on fixing games rather than restoring games and selling them. It is liberating. I have my life back. I have my evenings back. I now no longer fix pinballs on week days after work. I feel great and when I do fix pinballs I am not angry about it. I fix them on the weekends and schedule them around my life rather than the other way around.

I haven't posted much here since most of the repairs have already been documented. I still enjoy getting a pinball machine working and watching the owner excited that their game is working.

I drove to Charlottesville last weekend to fix and restore a Simpson's Pinball Party. The game was purchased new back in 2003 so it was still in great condition. It was a little dirty but we cleaned that with alcohol. Many of the GI lights were out since the game was always on. The display was not working. I provided the owner with a list of parts to buy before I came. This include a colorDMD (LED), Cointaker LED set, Cliffy protectors, decals, game blades, apron cards, and superbands. I inferred that the 100 volt power to the display was not working and a color DMD (which uses 5 volts) would work. Once we replaced this, the display worked. Once we loaded up the code, the owner was excited.

The main problem the customer stated was the ball would get stuck in the garage. This sounded like a mechanical issue. But before I worked on this, we checked all the coils (they worked) and the switches. The left sling was not working. A wire was disconnected. I soldered that back on.

Then we removed the top couch play field area. It was obvious that the problem was the ramp protectors were too close to each other. I rolled up a ball and the ball would get stuck between the left and right sides. The customer stated that the game would stop, search, then kick out another ball. Once he shot the ball into the garage, it would dislodge the other ball and send the shot ball down the lower loop. He stated the game was like this since he bought this. This is not good QC from the factory (15 years ago). We dremeled the holes in the ramp. We screwed in the right ramp guide and it was now moved to the right. The left ramp guide was snuggly against the left side. The holes did not align but it was solidly in place. In fact, in retrospect, when the left side was screwed in, it was bowed out which caused the ball to get stuck. Now the ball flowed freely.

We then spent the rest of the 10 hours I was there installing LEDs, superbands, Cliffy protectors and cleaning. Once done, it looked better than new and we added the game blades. The game popped. This is why I love restoring them, to see the person enjoying their game again. This was the first time this game was working like it was supposed to. The customer was ecstatic.

Now that the party is over, I will add some bling to my games. I need to add Cliffys to Houdini, X-men, and some other games in various places. I have a lot of stuff to add to X-men and superbands to add to Houdini, X-Men, Star Wars, Ghostbusters, Star Trek LE and Star Trek Next Gen. I will work on these over the next few months just to bling out my games.

As you can see from my wish list above, I would really like a Dialed In! but decided to wait on it. I just can't justify the price right now. As I noted, I have an X-men. I owned one years ago and missed it. I had the opportunity to buy a similar one locally so I did so.

I have owned hundreds of games over the years and enjoyed every one of them. Some more than others. Some I sold and wanted back. Some I sold and didn't miss. Houdini is a beautiful machine. It has a lot of modes. But I am not "feeling" it. I want to. I am trying very hard. I did some tweaking on it a few weeks ago to get the pitch at the perfect angle and tweaked other settings and it is playing better. I will try some more to get shots to go they way they are intended so it plays better. I do not want t sell it. But I feel like I could have bought something else. I will work on it over the next few weekends to see if I can get it playing better. "Better" in my mind is getting the shots I think should be gotten when I hit the ball. Subjective of course. But if the ball is not going into the milk can loop or through the left stage alley which is supposed to go directly into the stage, then the game is not at the right angle or something else is going on. I will work on this and report back.

As I stated below, I LOVE Star Wars Premium. The flow is wonderful. The sounds, voices, music, movie clips, etc are great. I am so glad I got this.

Ghostbusters is also great. I need to play it more but have been playing other games.

X-Men is also great fun. I need to spend a little time to actually learn the rules better. It was funny how Star Wars was just intuitive. X-Men is not rocket science but just hasn't clicked in yet.

I haven't done much on learning Arduino since I have been busy at work and we have been renovating our house. We have lived here 20 years and it is time to fix up things for our enjoyment. This has caused us to sell, donate and get rid of a lot of junk... err treasures. Now that we are mostly done, I can get back to blinging out my pinballs for my enjoyment.

It is funny that pinball machine prices have skyrocketed lately and I am not selling any. Besides the fact I stated that I don't want to spend my time to restore, they are just too expensive to buy to resell. If I had all the games I ever sold and sold them now, I could probably retire. But reality is I don't have the space and I needed to buy and sell machines to be able to buy the next machine. Just like playing the lottery, if I would have known, I should have kept a few and made a killing on them.

Since prices are high, it is harder to buy them. So the games I have may be the ones I have for a few years. But I enjoy them so I am fine.

Maybe we should renovate the basement and make it look like a 1950s diner....


I posted pictures of my Ghostbusters Premium.


I posted photos of my Houdini. I also posted photos of my Star Wars Premium.


I have been so busy playing my new games, I forgot to mention that the Houdini came last Monday 4/16/2018. I will post pictures over the weekend and link to them here.


I put Junk Yard up for sale.

I have been enjoying and playing Star Wars Premium and Ghostbusters Premium. I have wanted Ghostbusters since I first saw it. Star Wars grew in me.

I like games with subways. Star Wars doesn't have one. Ghostbusters has a small one.


I posted on Facebook to not forget to change your AA batteries on your pinballs if you haven't done so in the past 5 years.

If the weather cooperates here and in PA, I will get two new pinballs on Tuesday.

I changed all my locks on my pinballs to the same key. I have been thinking about doing this for years and finally did it.

I did a fix on an Addams Family yesterday. I thought it would be 2 hours or less. It was over 4 hours. The MPU had all the transistors below the batteries in sockets. The 4 trough switches, and two right in and out lane switches were not working. So I did the logical thing and replaced the ULN2803 and I only had two LM339 and determined where they would control these switches and replaced.

This fixed the two right in and out lanes but the trough switches did not work.

We quickly swapped out the MPU with one I brought and we had the same issue so the problem was continuity.

We previously ensured continuity to the connector. However, we ensured continuity to the outside of the connector where the wire attaches to the connector. We looked at the connector and pin 1 which controls column 1 was corroded. I rebuilt the .1" molex connector and all switches worked.

The main problem I came for was when two balls were locked in the swamp, the lower jet bumper would begin to pop. We tried to find a pattern. There really was none, but the best we could find was the 3rd switch would cause the bumper to pop until the ball was lost. Then this would repeat on the next ball until multi-ball was achieved.

We also found a problem with the lamp matrix causing multiple lights to light. For example, light 51 would also like 81 and 81 would also light 51.

He has a Rottendog driver board so I thought it would be okay. But after exhaustive testing, I put another driver board in and it cleared up all problems. I told him to send the Rottendog back to be repaired since it will cost less than buying a board from me. So we got the game 100% working including the magnets which never worked for as long as he owned the game!


I looked up my current collection of games (that I have, will get this week, and on order). My collection is ranked on Pinside as:

#5 Stern Lord of the Rings
#11 Stern Star Trek LE
#12 Williams Star Trek Next Generation
#14 Stern Spiderman
#16 Bally Theatre of Magic
#25 Stern Star Wars Premium * not yet delivered
#28 Stern Ghostbusters Premium * not yet delivered
#30 Jersey Jack Hobbit LE
#33 American Pinball Houdini * not yet delivered
#107 Williams Junkyard


Wow. I haven't posted in a while. I have been busy at my full time job does doing occasional fixes on the weekends. I have been helping a lot of people over the phone for free. Not a good business model but a good customer relations model. I have been offered EM games to purchase which I do not like and usually give first dibs to a friend that has picked up a few over the years. I have been offered older solid state games and do not really care for these so have been passing on to friends as well. (If you have a game you want, tell me and I'll keep an eye out for it.)

I have been patiently waiting for Houdini.

I got the hotel reservations to go to the Allentown Pinfestival in May.

I am also almost finished the the LOTR for a customer. Waiting for a power splicer and left blade then done. I also added the super bands on my LOTR. It looks great. I have no more repairs in my house so I just played some of my pinballs.


Junk Yard is complete.

I'm working on a restoration of a LOTR for a customer so it will look as nice as mine.

I am waiting on Houdini.

I am teaching myself Arduino coding to so can eventually learn the Pinduino sub routines to try adding lights to games. It is fun to be programming again.

I didn't take the voluntary exit program at my job. I love my job (and my paycheck) too much to leave it and I am doing very well at work right now.

Although I really tried, I did not win either of the large lotteries. So my dreams of a mega pinball warehouse, pizza shop, brewery/barcade, showroom, and drive inside work shop are dashed yet again.


Junk Yard mostly complete. Since my rant below, I bought a new translite ($130). If I am going to sell this, it is important that all parts are perfect. I also needed a new spinner and dome lights ($50). The headlight cleaner for the plastic ramps was $15. Now I have about $1,000 in new parts added to the game.

I still need to add the blades and the mod that is being painted (more $$$). Then I will be done and take my glamour shots.


I picked up a somewhat clean/dirty Junk Yard. (I'll post pictures soon.) I thought about flipping it . A few people were interested but no takers. I kind of like the game so thought maybe I would restore for me and maybe sell in the future. When I got the game, immediately I added $135 of parts to it. It was missing the back glass glass (customer broke it a few years ago when working on the back box). It was missing the back box lock mechanism. I added the Pincab protectors on the legs. I added the trough jam plastic which every Williams/Bally game should have. When I had the glass off the back-box, I decided to put LEDs into the back-box. It is easier to do it with the glass off than to try to pull through each light and break the brittle plastic. I also added two wing bolts to secure the back box to the cabinet better than just the clasp in the back.

So if I were to have sold the game "as is" it would have been "as is." Upon taking further questions and photos for people, I have discovered other problems. But "as is" machines should be expected to have some issues to fix up. Otherwise (like I am about to state below) it would have more time and parts and work performed and cost more.

When simply changing bad lights to ensure they all work, I realized that the high power was not turned off when the coin door was open. This really bothered me. I have messed up games that had high power on based on stupid things I have done (see my write up of how I screwed up a customer's TZ that I had to come back and fix). I think it is important that the high power is off when the coin door is open. I did a search on Pinside and a posting showed a connector that connects to one of the existing connectors that passes through all wires directly except the ones that go to the coin door. For this game, this was not plugged in. I did notice that it was just sitting there and did not know why. Now I do.

Before I did the above steps, I also was getting the message that the coin door was open when it was closed after I had the door opened then closed, which was also bothering me. I would turn off the game with the door closed and when I turned it on it would work. This had to be fixed.

I plugged in this connection. With the door open, the high power is off. This is great. However, now with the door closed, high power is also off. Not good. I quickly realized that the door was missing the Interlock bracket. This is the piece of metal connected to the door that pushes both coin door switches in when the door is closed. I ordered this for $10 and it should come today. This should solve all of the above problems. It is amazing the door was missing this bracket all along.

This game was purchased from Coin Op Warehouse back in 1998 or 1999. This was the time frame where if the game turned on, they cleaned visible portions and sold it as working. I just took apart the game (and will post pictures later). It is one of the dirtiest games I have ever seen. It was clean in the visible areas but absolutely black every place else.

So I just ordered $200 in parts from Marco including the interlock bracket, super bands for all the rubbers (expensive but looks great), and a few other things behind the scenes for this game. I bought a new plastic set and decals for the spinner and 6 wrecking ball targets from Bay area Amusements ($200). Three plastics were broken and the set was available so I bought it. I bought Cliffy protectors ($65). I bought a manual ($25). I bought some cool blades from Tilt Graphics ($75). Finally, I realized that the plastic above the car switches is broken. There is a mod on Pinside to get a 3D printed replacement that I'll have to paint for $70. I will try this. I also bought the Pinbits plastic protects for about $20.

So now I have added about $655 to the $135 I originally put into the game. ($790). Now when I sell this game, it will be almost $5,500 to try to cover my time (which usually comes out to less than $10 an hour). But since I am doing this for me, the hourly wage will not matter. But sadly it is not appreciated by some people that buy pinballs restored which is why I do not have any pinballs for sale.

This evening I have been adding LEDs and see that a few lights are coming on. I need to trace down the lamp matrix issue now. I found it!

Here is what I found:

11 also lit 61, 17

12 also lit 62, 17

13 also lit 63, 17

14 also lit 64, 17

15 also lit 65, 17

16 also lit 66, 17

17 lit nothing else

18 also lit 68, 17

21 also lit 61, 27

22 also lit 62, 27

23 also lit 63, 27

24 also lit 64, 27

25 also lit 65, 27

26 also lit 66, 27

27 lit nothing else

28 also lit 68, 27

So I looked at lamp 67. This is the Angel sling on the left. The two prongs are touching and the diode wire was touching the switch rivet. I moved the prongs and added electrical tape and all the lamps worked correctly.


Theatre of Magic mostly complete. I hope to buy a apron magnet cover and trunk blades this weekend in York. I will re-brass the wire ramps when the person has the replacements.


More photos added to Theatre of Magic.


I posted a Preliminary list of items for sale at the York show. I will be in the indoor flea market area.


This the the KAHR.US WPC Power Fix Daughter board that I add to every Bally/Williams game that I work on. I highly recommend them.

I have been adding the daughter boards to all my Bally/Williams games for a few years now. If your 5 volt circuit drops occasionally, this board ensures the game does not reset. (If your 5 volts drops all the time like when pressing both flippers it usually signals a problem on the driver board.) This game would reset when the ball hit the switch for either ramp. Rob, the designer of the board, told me my 18 volts was having the issue. In test mode, the game reset when all lights were turned on. I replaced the driver board and the game consistently provides 18 volts. Very nice to have the board to isolate a problem I didn't even know I have. 

Below you can see the board. It goes into J210 on the MPU then the Connector goes into the board.


I picked up a Theatre of Magic today. I got it working. Now to make it beautiful.


I dropped of my 1979 Bally Star Trek at Coin Op Warehouse in Hagerstown yesterday. With 50,000 followers on his web site, he can sell anything. I wanted to sell it to free up space for games I actually want for myself. I told him what I wanted, which was basically to get all my costs back for restoring the game, adding LEDs, new displays, and 3 new boards. He added several hundred and sold it within a day. This is great for him. With just a few pictures I provided to him, he sold the game with no investment of time or money except for the time to post my game.

I spent tonight inventorying the items I will take with me to the show. This way I can mark items (like plastic sets or decals set) as complete or list what they are missing. Also I can note if new unused or complete but used. I knew I had some stuff I wanted to keep. I found a few things. I was able to create a full set of Ripley's Believe it or not decals and kept them since I want the game again in the future. I found a Theatre of Magic Operator's handbook that I also kept and some other items. I am looking forward to purchasing a Theatre of Magic to restore for myself next weekend. This should complement the Houdini I should get later in the year.

Someone is supposed to come to pick up a NOS Contact black glass. It is beautiful and looks and is new. They said they may come and in true fashion they have not responded to my request of possibly when. Typical. I will assume they are not coming. It would be nice so I have one less thing to bring to York. We will see. Someone local may be interested in my almost complete NOS Gilligan's Island plastic set. Just need to synchronize when I can meet up with the person.

I have been reading up and looking at parts and mods for the Theatre of Magic I am getting. I want this to come out as nice as the Spider-Man did.


Been thinking back on the prices I paid for games over the years. For "A" level games, I was paying in the mid $1,000s to $2,000s from 1999-2007 or so. Then the games were in the mid $2,000s to $3,000s. Within the last few years, they are now in the mid $3,000s to $5,000s. These are UNRESTORED games. People look at the value of the games as listed on eBay and such, and retail and think their game is valued at the high end. I explain to people that if I buy a game and restore it, I sometimes add $2,000 in mods and parts (used to be less than $1,000, then in the mid $1,000s, and now up to $2,000). So when you add in the cost to buy the game and the parts to make it worth near the high end (not including my time), I can no longer afford (or care to) buy games with the sole intent to restore and sell.

I should soon have the two games sold that I really liked but wanted to move out so I can get some different games. This will be the first time since 2004 that I had no pinballs for sale at all. I will also take several of my slot machines to the York Show in September to try to sell to free up room for more personal pinballs.

I guess I should change the first page to highlight that main part of this business is fixing pinball machines.


I have been cleaning up my basement over the past few weeks. Partly to prepare for the York Show in September, party to clean up almost 20 years of junk and treasures (mostly junk). I will have a lot to sell at the indoor flea market area of the York Show in September. So come by and say hi.

While at the Allentown show at the fairgrounds back in May, it brought back two memories. The first was our family's first trip to Allentown back in the middle 1970s. We saw the Osmonds at the Allentown Fair at the fairgrounds. I am sure we did other things as well, but this is the standout event. I even mentioned that to my sister and she fondly remembered this trip and concert. She also remembered I bought her the latest album from the Osmonds at the time.

(I did a little bit of research and see that the Osmonds performed in Allentown on Monday, April 9, 1975, Wednesday July 9, 1975, and August 8 and 9, 1975 at the Allentown Fair. So we were at the concert either August 8th or 9th, 1975.)

The second memory was the collectibles shows we did from 1989-1999 including many at hotels in Allentown. In 1988-1989, I wrote a computer program to keep track of collectibles. It was called "Collectibles Database." My company was MSdataBase Solutions. (This was a play on "dBase" with the lower case "d" and "Base" as well as MSB either standing for "Michael Suzanne Belofsky" or my full name.) At the time it was written in Clipper using dBase IV. It allowed people to create lists of their collectibles and print out inventory for insurance, wanted lists, for sale lists, etc. I started to license price guides in computer format and added value by allowing collectors to move items from the price guide to their collection and automatically update prices twice a year. In 1994 I took the program to Windows using Visual Basic. I started to license photos from the figurine companies as well. Someday I can write so much on this topic. But the summary was I was working full time and the business was taking more time but not earning enough money to quit my full time job.

In 1999, I created an Oracle database on my hosting site (first use of a "Cloud") and created software that would allow people to log in, only see their collections and price guides. I would never have to send out another update on CD or floppy. The second a price guide was updated it would be available to subscribers. It was a great idea and worked perfectly. The only problem was that the world was not ready for it. The Internet didn't really catch on until the early to mid 2000s.

Suzanne and I sold the company in 1999 when I realized it was killing us. The company that bought us was the Longerberger price guide we were licensing. I just looked at the web site again (probably first time in 10 years or so). It is much of what I envisioned back in 1999 but the speed and adoption of the Internet was not there yet. So sad. I was ahead of my time and a dollar short... typical.

The saddest part of this (and it is totally due to my lack of business knowledge) is that we needed to sell the business. The company that bought us offered us a price. We accepted the price and then they came back and said that they would pay it to us over 3 years. My lack of business knowledge and experience (and really wanting to sell the business) did not lead me to think they should pay me the price plus interest for 3 years. Instead, they discounted the price and the 3 years of interest were built into the price. What fries me to this day (and I need to get over it) was that I was working with a "Christian" company and expected to be treated fairly and not taken advantage of. I guess the owner had no responsibility to tell me I am being stupid and allowing this to occur. But I expected more. (The funny thing is when I have told this story in the past to friends, they stated I was silly to think that "Christian" meant ethical, honest, or fair....)

I think these types of experiences of being taken advantage of have helped me to be a better manager, director, and leader at work. I have also come to the realization that in order to be very successful at business, you have to take advantage of people. I cannot do this and will continue to earn a small side living on the pinball business.

Today is my 16th anniversary of being a full time employee at Fannie Mae. Looking forward to another 16!

I try not to say much about the news or politics. But have you seen the tragic car accident incident with Venus Williams? I am sorry for the man that was killed in the car accident. But unless I am watching the video and reading everything wrong, Venus is not at fault. If anyone is at fault, it is the driver of the car that drives very fast into the intersection. All I can infer is that she was distracted and did not see that a car was clearly still in the intersection Although the light may have been green for the other car, common sense would imply that the car currently in the intersection has the right of way and the other car should have stopped. End of story. There is no wrongful death lawsuit to be filed by the family. It is a tragic accident caused by the deceased person's wife. The ambulance chasing lawyer should know better. If a pedestrian were still in the intersection walking slowly and that pedestrian was hit, the driver of the car would be at fault for not yielding to a pedestrian crossing the street. So why is this lawsuit allowed to move forward in our very stupid court system?


A Sega Harley Davidson was brought to my house last Saturday to restore. It is not a detailed restoration. Just enough to get it nice and LED'ed. New rubbers, remote battery, fixed plastic, Cliffy protector. It will be finished this Saturday when he comes back to help finish it. I have not documented the page yet so it just has placeholder text at the moment.


My third tool box broke at a customer's home on Sunday. I was handing it to him to help and when he took it the handle broke and it fell down the stairs. Bang, bang, bang. Luckily it did not hurt his walls or floor. It did open up the top area with screws and such. Some of the light bulbs broke so we had to vacuum up the floor. I purchased my 4th tool box today. It is a Husky with the fabric case rather than plastic. We'll see how this does. I guess three lasting 13 years is not bad.

I got to see and fix an original Medieval Madness and a Twilight Zone. The TZ had the reset issue when both flippers were pressed. The MM has a few switch adjustments. I changed the batteries on both games and told him to set his calendar to change the batteries in 3 years. I'm restoring a customer's Sega Harley Davidson in my house. He will come back next Saturday to put some sweat equity into it and learn to fix some stuff. He looks like someone that can work on these in the future. I'll post pictures soon.


Spider-Man is complete. Please take a look.


The parts came in for Spider-Man but I screwed up. I "assumed" we were working off the rubber list on p. 58 of the manual. I asked for 4 blue 7/16" and 14 red 7/16". I received 7/16" ID (inner diameter) when I needed the small post rubbers that go on a post that are 7/16" OD (outer diameter). I had to reorder parts. My game is sitting in pieces on the floor until the parts arrive.

Once I get Spider-Man done, I will enjoy it. Then I will really work on cleaning up the basement finding items to sell at the York show in September. I will also get the Bally Star Trek that I mentioned below to fix and also a Stern Harley Davidson to fix.

I also have to add blades to Hobbit LE, Lord of the Rings, Star Trek LE, and Star Trek Next Generation.


The final parts for Spider-Man should come in tomorrow or Friday. I ordered red and blue polyurethane rubbers and a new magnet core. The Cliffy protectors also came in.

I worked on a Bally Star Trek on Friday night. It should have been a quick fix to replace the MPU. But it only flashed 5 times with the old board and same with the new board. After tracing down the issue, which is that 43 volts is not getting to the pin on J4 connector, I verified that the power rectifier board, the driver board and the MPU were getting 43 volts. I tested a new driver board and put in another MPU just in case. The wires to the power rectifier board are burnt in some areas and soldered directly to the board. The next step is to get the game at the house and rebuilt the power rectifier board and connectors. Since I also have a Bally Star Trek, I can ensure that the wires are in the correct location on the connectors. If this does not work, I am baffled. I hope to solve this problem, but this makes going to people's houses frustrating.

On Monday evening I worked on a Black Knight 2000. It had an "Adjust Failure." I expected to possibly have to change out the board. But I looked at it and the corrosion was limited to the battery holder. I replaced the battery holder and the game worked great. I was hoping this would be a fast fix. The right flipper was not working. It was fried and the plunger was stuck in. I replaced the FL11630 flipper. There was a wire going between the power on the left flipper to the right flipper. Not a good thing to do. I removed that. Then the left and right flipper did not work. I replaced the left flipper as well since it was not correct. Then I realized that the EOS switch was corroded and the wire was moving power to the left flipper (rather than to the right flipper as I originally thought). After I filed the EOS switch, the left flipper worked better than ever.

But the right flipper still did not work. I was hoping that it was the F5 (3amp slow blow) fuse. It was not. I was hoping that a TIP36 transistor controlled the flipper. But based on the schematics and on line information, it looks like the flipper is not controlled by the MPU so no transistor. I traced the connectivity from the flipper switch to the interconnect board and out from the interconnect board to the power board. All good. I shorted the center lug of both flipper coils to ground and they worked. I assume the issue is the interconnect board. I labeled all the connectors and replaced the fried connector for lights in the back box. The owner is comfortable replacing the board. This should solve the problem. The new interconnect board did solve the problem. The F5 fuse blew. We replaced and it works fine. (The fuse was just old and fatigued.)

I'll report back final status on the Star Trek once I work on them.


I went to Pinfestival in Allentown last week. I drove up after work on Friday. I dropped off my stuff at the hotel and there was a White Castle across the freeway. I went. I was trying to relive the 1970s when we used to go to Americana lanes bowling alley of Cross Bay Blvd and the White Castle was down the street. It tasted better in the 1970s.

A posted some items I had for sale and I had a few people ask me to bring the items. I did. As usual, no good deed goes unpunished (although annoying and not terrible). No one showed up to get the items I brought. One person (who asked for 2 items for 2 different games) did email me Friday night telling me that he sold the game and no longer needed the items. I just think this is funny because I personally would not be buying stuff for a game that I was planning to sell unless a person just happened to walk by the house and knock on the door and offered cash. Plus they sold one machine, not both. No matter. Just interesting observations.

I fell in love with American Pinball's Houdini. I spent a lot of time at the booth watching people play and speaking with Josh Kugler (thank you for letting me ask all the questions) and Joe Balcer. I did place a deposit on the game. I like that it is well made, well coded, only one version of the game, it has a subway, and is fun to play.

I was thinking of getting some blades for a few games. I stopped by the Pingraffix booth. I started talking to the person "Cory" and he said. "Oh my gosh. What is your name?" I told him. He said "Do you know who I am?" I said the only Cory know was my next door neighbor growing up in NYC and said his last name. He said, "That is me. You look just like you dad." Wow. His mom even told him when he started helping his friend Joe in this business that I was into pinballs. I did not know that he was doing this. The owner, Joe, knew my sister growing up and knew my brother and me. Small world. I bought 5 blades. A mirrored one for Spider-Man, a lit one for Lord of the Rings, a plain one for Star Trek Next Generation, the same one as for the previous game but with the cutout for the lights for Star Trek LE, and finally a plain one for Hobbit LE. They also introduced a beautiful set of blades, back box artwork and translite for Attack from Mars that was lit.

I bought a bunch of LEDs from CoinTaker, the blades as I mentioned above, some parts from Marco Specialties, a Gottlieb System 1 power supply for a friend to fix his Buck Rogers, a radio for another friend, a Hobbit manual, and the deposit on the Houdini pinball. I think I spent enough. I also met several friends. I enjoyed going to the show.

I did just order a red set of red polyurethane rubbers for the Spider-Man. I also just had all the Cliffy protectors sent for this game as well. So I plan to spend a few weekends pimping out this game and adding photos.

I'll have to start fixing pinballs to cover the cost of the Houdini. :)

I went to the York show a few times in a row to sell stuff at the flea market. Thank goodness, I have an indoor space for this year's show. I always hope to sell out of everything and usually only sell 30% and make 10% of what I was hoping for. I will bring whatever pinball I have for sale and my slot machines since I want to free up space for more pinballs. I'm thinking of making a sign "Oh yeah. This is the York show. How much should I pay you to take my stuff?"


I continue to clean up the basement. I will go to the Allentown show, but will not sell anything except for the few items I pre-sold. I am preparing for York as I said below. I am cleaning up to organize better. Hopefully I can eventually move my pinballs to the back area. I am also making more key holders. I bought clear plastic holders and place two business cards in. I bought the business cards from Vista Print. When I make the next set of business cards my tag line will change from "Buy, sell, repair pinballs, slots, & video games." to "Buy, sell, repair Pinballs and Antique slot machines."


I did some maintenance on my Escalera and posted it here. My Escalera is a motorized dolly that climbs stairs that allows me to move pinballs mostly by myself. I ordered new wheels, gliders and pins. I will post the changes to the above site once i get them.

I received the Back Alley Creations mods for my Spider-Man (Houses and train). I'll post photos once I receive the Cliffy protectors to do the entire work on the play field. I am very happy to get this game back to enjoy it.

I was enjoying my Star Trek Next Generation last night. I had to do another adjustment. I actually replaced the left flipper plunger assembly so it had the new version. I also added springs that did not go on the plunger to provide more range of motion. I think I am finally happy with the flippers.

I plan to attend Pinfestival in Allentown on Saturday, May 6. I posted some items for sale that can be picked up at the show if anyone needs anything. Here are my ads. (I'm not sure the link will work. If not search for me, mbelofsky, then you can see my ads.)

I rented out an indoor flea market space in York September 28-30. I can schedule to be of work a few days then. I cannot get off work right now. I am working on finding all the stuff to bring as well as some slot machines and a pinball, if it doesn't sell by then.


I continued to work on Spider-Man last night and this morning. The decal is nicely on the speaker/DMD panel with the color display. I also replaced the plunger with a Spider-Man head plunger.


I picked up a HUO Spider-Man. I sold mine a few years ago and missed it. I am glad I got one back. I will post the initial photos later tonight. But since it is HUO with few plays, it is in really nice condition. Tonight I will add a decal on the speaker/DMD panel then change out the DMD with a colorDMD. I am waiting for Cliffy protectors. I will take apart the game and change out some of the black posts with Cliffy colored posts and also redo the rubbers and clean.

I will try to post some of the extra stuff I have for sale on Pinside. I have extra legs, a Contact NOS back glass, some translites and other items.

My goal is to sell out some of the slot machines and fix up the back corner of my basement to separate my pinballs from the ones for sale or that I am fixing.


Suzanne's mom passed away on Sunday 2/19/2017. Suzanne has been home with her mom since the beginning of the year almost every day. She came home on Monday, 2/13, to come home a few days when her mom was in hospice. We received the call on Sunday at 4pm. She flew back on Tuesday, 2/21. I flew in on Saturday 2/25. We stayed until 3/8/2017 to take care of everything. Suzanne did most of the leg work. If there is one piece of advice I can give you, it is to have a trust and ensure all money is in a bank account of the trust. We made 15 copies of the death certificate (which seems to be standard). I realize people need to make money. But there is someone sucking money out of you at every turn when you are dealing with a death in the family. Even with the "pre-paid funeral arrangements," it cost over $4,000. You would think this is not the first funeral the place did and would know all of the expenses associated with a funeral to get them covered. I realize there can be some expenses that are not known until the time of the death. But all of these expenses were known and could have been added in. It is so frustrating. Then we needed to talk to a lawyer (sorry lawyers, I don't like lawyers. I think they are out to charge you every millisecond they can). Luckily we did not need to go to probate, just file the will. The expenses go on and on.

I came back Wednesday evening. I did work most of the time there for my full time job due to the time difference. I fixed a pinball after work on Thursday. Then fixed another two after work on Friday. I fixed a pinball Saturday morning then again in the afternoon. Someone brought a pinball to my house to fix. I then rushed out and I bought a Last Action Hero on Sunday. Then looked at a Star Trek Data East that I did not want but helped him fix it. Luckily near the house so I didn't charge and didn't spend too much time.

I spend an hour or so last night on the Last Action Hero and another hour tonight. I still got to get the sound working but getting closer.


I was thinking about what I wrote yesterday and want to clarify. I want to get to the point that I have all the boards for the Gottlieb System 1 (and System 3 and System 80, etc), But this is a large outlay of money and I don't get many requests for these games. I have an extensive collection of boards for Bally 1977-1985, Bally/Williams WPC 1990 - 2000, Williams System 3 - 11C (except no MPU for System 11), and newer Stern. The real issue with this Cleopatra is the potential costs of the boards and the owner thinking that the total cost of boards and labor should be less, which means I should be lowering my rates (which I already did). [She owns a business... maybe I should ask for services and ask for a discounted rate.] By her putting forth the initiative and money to buy the boards, she has an investment in the repair. Now I can come for an hour or two and get the game working and my fee is separate than the costs of the parts.

A few days ago someone texted me through Yelp. I responded within two minutes. It is a Monday Night Football. I thought it was corrosion. But I think it just needs new batteries. I spoke to the person today and did Face-time. The audits and adjustments had garbage in the values. I told him to go through each setting and put a valid value in. We reset it to free play but it still comes up with credits. So hopefully after he resets all the values, the game will work. The right drop targets were not resetting. We lifted the game and the coil was dangling. The bracket came off. Luckily he has a right side drop target bank as a model. He has to find the bracket and screws and it would work. So I talked myself out of a service call.... again. Maybe he'll give me a good rating on Yelp.


Update on the video game at the dentist office I wrote about below. I decided to call my friend that does a much better job at video games than I do. I gave him the new board and he did the repair for the dentist. This was great since I am really busy at work and really didn't have the time for this repair. Plus I had the feeling that I would electrocute myself.

Did I ever say "no good deed goes unpunished?" I guess I just don't learn. I was asked to help put the head back on a Cleopatra solid state game and reconnect it since it was "working" before. I told the person I would do the work for a slightly discounted rate since it should not have taken longer than 30 minutes.

Guess what? The game did not work. The batteries were dead. (Which I guess is not surprising on a 40 year old game.) So I added 3 AA batteries with diode. The reset button did not work. I could not fix the game. I was there for two hours.

I came home and emailed a list to the owner that owner should buy, including the replacement MPU, driver board, power board, and the cable between the CPU and driver. I told her once she had the boards I would come back and install them all and the game would work. It also needs an A-5194 coil (which I did not have) and the green drop target was broken. I explained to the person that I am pretty sure the MPU is bad and needs to be fixed. But it is easier to buy a new one. Since I am being nickel'ed and dime'd on my fee, I want to ensure when I come back I can make it work. The only way is to replace all three boards. Do they need to be? Maybe. But since I don't have spare boards for this set of games since I don't fix that often, I am putting the burden on the owner to buy all the boards so I can fix it once and for all. Otherwise, I would go there and replace the CPU and something else would show up. Then we would to have them get the next board and come back, etc. This would make me lose so much time and money that it would not be worth my time. So for these types of games, I can have the owner ensure all parts are available or not even bother to fix them.

I also looked at a Buckley Slots (Mills Conversion). I determined that the game needed a section of the game cleaned. (It probably needs a lot more cleaned, but would want to ensure the component works before we do the whole thing.) So it should take an hour or so for the owner to clean the area. Two cotter pins and a spring need to be removed. I could have taken it home and cleaned it. But what if this didn't work and I have to go to the next area to clean? Then that doesn't solve the issue and go to the next area? Then I have 10-15 hours into the game and can only charge $300 or so.

I had the opportunity to visit the Spider Man 2008 I sold a few years ago. It needed some cleaning and adjusting. It was nice to see it again and reminded me that I actually do want one again.

I had the opportunity to buy a Dirty Harry last week. The game would be okay but not on the list above of what I want. So if I can't get it low enough to flip, it is not worth getting to restore. I have learned my lesson on restoring games. I don't make money and I am no longer willing to work for $5 an hour to do a restoration for someone else. I will do a restoration for myself for this amount and if I decide to sell in the future then at least I enjoyed the game for a while. Life is too short to waste my free time doing a restoration for someone else at poverty rates.


I showed my collection and the two games I had for sale to someone today. it was more of a teaching moment for him to learn and see flow vs stop and go. I enjoyed talking about the games knowing that nothing would be sold. I could probably sell my personal collection 10 times over as long as I wish to sell it for less than I paid before I do all my modifications.

I regretfully sold a brand new video game to a dentist's office back in 2012. I do not like video games but I sold it to them because they asked. As they say, no good deed goes unpunished. I assumed this game will work for a long long time. The video goes out. And oh, it is a CRT display right before they went to LCD screens. The cabinet is 3/4" too small to fit an LCD screen. So I had to go to the dentist office (without charging) to determine the issue. Luckily the production support person from the company was on the phone with me to isolate the problem to the video board and the little board stuck to the end of the CRT. I hate video games. (Did I say this yet?) I hate having to discharge the electricity in the CRT before it is safe to handle. I have to pry off the small board without breaking the CRT. Hopefully when I get the boards, I will be able to call the support guy and replace the boards and hopefully it will work. Did I say I hate video games?


I have been so busy on a new project at work that I finally have a few minutes to write. I am co-leading a project that will be code complete on 3/31. End to end integration testing done by 5/4 and in production 5/13. Hopefully we will be able to keep to this schedule. 48 applications are affected; 26 will need code changes; 22 will require testing only. It is amazing. In the 15 years I have worked for my company how we have gone from working on complete applications that may be linked with a few other applications but they were contained. Now, when we want to perform any modification, we have to do extensive analysis to see what is affected across the company. Then we have to orchestrate all of the application changes to go in at the same time. There has to be a better way. Other companies are doing it, hopefully mine will get there too.

Oh, if you didn't notice, I created a What's New page for my notes from 2014 - 2016. Now was a good time to create a new What's New page starting with 2017. I think there is a book or two in here if I had the time to organize and expand upon some items. Hopefully the combination of this page and my repair chronicles pages provide a really good list of problems and solutions. And my archives page showing detailed photos of my restorations should be useful as well.

It's the most wonderful time of the year.... at work. We are about to provide reviews, work on compensation, and then provide the comp statements. After 15 years I can truthfully state that compensation is a popularity contest. Ask HR and they are clueless. Tell HR and they will deny it and more importantly look down upon you. Do they really not know or are they living an illusion?

There is no consistency between teams. My worst performers could be better than the best performers in other teams. We do calibration within the group. We spend hours discussing person A vs person B to place them in the correct compensation bucket. As I stated, the popularity contest, or the person that is most vocal and condescending to others, usually wins out.

It is very frustrating when you are asked to build the best team you can and then you do. Then when it comes time for compensation you have to place them in a bell curve. Why should we have to? If we have the best people and they are all great, then why can't we recognize this?

My favorite comment, that has mostly been used against me (and I will NEVER do this to anyone), is "You did a great job last year which is exactly what I expect from you. You met my expectations." In a world where ratings that are "Exceeds Expectations," "Meets Expectations," and "Does Not Meet Expectations," this solidly states that no matter how great the work I do, I am expected to do great things and therefore I meet the expectations of my manager. Isn't this special?

Or better yet, "You moved into this team in the middle of the year, so you really can't get a high rating since you were only in this team for X months." Huh? You ASKED me to join the team. I was doing great work in my old team, which does not seem to count for anything. If I worked for a different company for 1/2 the year, I can understand this statement. But I have worked for the same company the whole year.

The variation on this statement is "You moved into this team in the middle of the year, so you really can't expect a high rating (or $$ that goes with it) since you were promoted to come over here." This makes sense. IF you are promoted, you normally would get a raise and then if you do your job you should be meets for the first year or year and half. However, the last few times, I moved, it was a lateral. No promotion. No raise. When you confront your manager on this itty bitty fact, then they say, "Well it is too late since comp is already recorded."

Here is another comment, "You did a great job last year but I need to give you a 'Meets expectations' so that I can use the higher ratings on others to justify higher merit or bonus payments."

Here is one of my all time HR favorites (and every comment I have posted has been used on me). I moved from a group that did not do variable comp to one that did. At the last moment when I was ASKED to move, they said "Oh, your salary will go down by X%. Your bonus (Z%) will go down by 50%.[Lets use 10% and 5% as an example.] But you get this variable bonus of Y% (that is based on factors that are outside my control .)" I said then my bonus should be my higher salary for 3/4 of the year (since I started Oct 1) multiplied by 10% + my lower salary for 1/4 of the year multiplied by 5%." HR said "No. You get your new salary multiplied by your new bonus." So my bonus was based on my lower salary multiplied by the lower percentage.

Later I moved to another team and thankfully out of the variable comp group. My salary went back up as did my bonus. I said to HR "I should get my new salary multiplied by my new bonus." HR said "Why would you think that? You have not been in the position for the full year so you cannot expect this." Does anyone but me see the contradiction in this statement? When I confronted HR and the contradicting statements, they said "That is another HR team." No! We are one company (just ask the company they will tell you we are one).

I can go on but I won't. I may even remove this so if you get to see it, you are special.

I have always given 110-150% effort at work. Always have. Always will. I just am smart enough now to know that it will not convert into a better rating, more pay, or promotion opportunities. It simply allows me to do really good work at work.

In my younger days, I was delusional. I thought extra work, better work, etc would provide the raises, bonuses and promotions for me. I realize now that it provides the raises, bonuses and promotions for my management team since they look so great. In hindsight, while my son was younger, I wish I spent more time at home rather than at work trying to do things that do not equate to better things at work. I could have been a better father and better husband. I could have gone to one more soccer game or one more school event. In hindsight, I look at the way it was inferred that if you do great work there is a one to one correlation and I compare that to the lottery commercials. After watching a lottery commercial with all the happy, smiling faces, it just infers that if I go out and buy one, I will win and be rich!

I used to work an extra 1000 hours or so. When I did get rewarded for exceeding expectations, my reward equated to less than a dollar an hour for the extra hours I put in. It has only taken most of my life, but I think it has finally sunk in. I will do great work. I will work late when needed and weekends when needed. (I am doing that now on this project.) But I will not delude myself into thinking it will amount to anything but the opportunity to continue working.

It has taken almost as long to recognize that restoring a pinball is a labor of love but you do not get paid for the hours. As you can see by the lack of items I have for sale, I have decided not to sell many pinballs and slots. I have a few left to get rid of, but I will not be getting any more to resell.

I also realize that doing a pinball repair provides a 1:1 correlation of time to money. If I put in an extra hour at work, I have lost that extra hour forever. If I fix a pinball machine, I get paid for every hour I work. Also, having this hobby keeps me sane and is a great diversion from work. I believe because of this hobby, I do better work at work and better repairs for the pinball business.

I actually did an informal calculation of what my "potential" could be if I got the highest rating. Since this is mostly subjective and done by popularity contest, there is no guarantee that any amount of extra effort will result in a higher rating. I also figured that if I did about 50 repairs a year, I could make up the difference (obviously simplifying the assumptions.)


2014-2016 What's New

2013 and Prior What's New

Virginia Sales Tax

Virginia sales tax is currently 6.0%. Sales tax for in-state orders applies to machines and parts. It does not apply to the delivery or repair services.


As of August 1, 2014, we will no longer provide a warranty with our pinballs unless you purchase a separate warranty from us. A 1 year warranty is $500 or pay as you go if you even need it. If you buy it directly from us and take it home yourself, you will be inspecting it to ensure it works. If we deliver, we will ensure that it works 100% when delivered.

Reasons You Should Let Us Deliver Your Pinball (or Another Machine)

  1. We will NOT provide a warranty for the machine since we cannot be assured that a problem did not happen when you transported the machine. (As of August 1, 2014, we will no longer provide a warranty with our pinballs unless you purchase a separate warranty from us. A 1 year warranty is $500 or pay as you go if you even need it. If you buy it directly from us and take it home yourself, you will be inspecting it to ensure it works. If we deliver, we will ensure that it works 100% when delivered.)
  2. We take responsibility for any damage that may occur during the delivery process.
  3. We professionally set up the machine, connect all the connectors, attach the legs, head, etc. and ensure that the pinball works properly. If anything is out of adjustment due to moving the machine, we can fix it in a few minutes as compared to having to come to your house later and charging you a trip fee and repair charge.
  4. If anything major is out of adjustment, we can order parts and repair. This hardly ever happens but it could and you and the machine are protected.

Delivery Options

We are currently set up for local delivery only within the Northern Virginia, Washington DC, Maryland, and North-Eastern West Virginia area. If you are interested in shipping the pinball machine, we will contact a shipper. You will pay all crating and postage costs.

If you would like us to deliver and set up within 50 miles of Purcellville, the charge is $300; within 100 miles $475. The delivery charge includes delivery to a first floor or basement level if walk-out.

We will not sell you a game/deliver the game if the only entrance to your basement is an inside the house staircase. They are too narrow. Plus we have to ensure we don't mess up carpet or wood. It just isn't worth it.

You may also come and pick up the machine from our location.