So I have always loved pinball, pinball based games, etc.....I purchased my first game way back in 2003. Did the typical super excited new guy move, and overpaid. But shit man, it was local, easy pick up! (I could have gotten a super nice TOM from the same guy for another grand...yeah.)
I thank my grandfather for all of it. Some may blame him instead ;)
He was raising a pretty big family and as they got older, he didn't want them to be out on the streets. So he decided to buy some used games. (First purchase confirmed for aug 60 for games, with the exception of the pool table and shuffleboard), (2nd and final purchase was done in nov of 67). Now back then, the mob was supposedly involved in games like this out here, so I am kind of impressed he did it. (Also, collecting games back then was unheard of, it was not happening.)
I don't know all of the games, because by the time I was around, only a handful were left. But one side still there's and/or I remember include a Bally ball bowler, Williams pitch and bat, midway shooting gallery, extremely old and incredibly well built pool table, a shuffleboard, and an EM shuffleboard scorer that mounts on the wall, and a pinball machine that I have zero idea what I think it was.
so these games got played every day while my mom was growing up. Evidently it was the place to be while they lived at home. So nature goes on, everyone has kids. I am the oldest, and I have 17 or 18 cousins. Needless to say, I had a very unique childhood. The basement was the best place in the house to have fun. I have found memories of bowling, learning to shoot pool and swear (but only during pool my grandfather would say. 'God swears when he plays '.
So on it went. One day we come over, and the bowler was gone. Motor went out, grandpa couldn't find one, tossed it. After this, at the ripe age of 11, I figured if I can fix em, he won't toss em.
most things were easy. All semi working EM games were left was the pitch and bat, shooting gallery, and the EM shuffleboard scorer, still stubbornly screwed to the wall, 25 years later. He never threw out another game.
So I got older, graduated, etc...and bought FH. Stuck it in grandparents basement, plugged it in, and there it sat for 14 years. It caused a sensation with my mom and her siblings. It got played heavily, with sessions going into early morning hours. I started hearing stories from my grandma about a few long nights, where she didn't get to bed til 3am, since she was playing with her sons.
during this time I started learning about fixing games. I was charged 120 bucks for a br replacement, and decided fuck that, I can do this. Started slow: rubber swap, flipper rebuild, etc...
I started eyeing the shooting gallery, until one day it was 'fuckit. I am doing it.' With the help of the TOP DVDs, I got it working for the first time I could remember.
Years later, I have to thank my grandfather for what he did, because there would be no way I would collect pins now, and all the incredibly nice and awesome people I have met because of him. I wish he was still alive, because I think he would have loved what's going on now.