Bally Freedom an American Icon

By Robo950

April 16, 2023

This story got featured & frontpaged on April 27, 2023

48 days ago

I was born in Chicago, the year 1976 along with 5,000 brothers. My creator the Bally company incorporated in me the latest electromechanical technology. I had hundreds of miniature light bulbs inside, pop bumpers, slings,drop targets and flippers. Four players could enjoy me at the same time for the reasonable price of 25 cents each. I had an anticipated life of 5-10 years and was soon shipped off to a local Arcade.

In time I had to endure heavy smoking, spilled drinks and machine bashers pushing me around, with some trying to steal money out of my coin box. In some arcades that I lived in the line voltage was low, so I was opened up and my transformer was hot tapped to give me more energy and power. I felt violated. 
As technology advanced my future friends incorporated solid state boards with a variety of new features and toys. It seemed that I was played less and less. Eventually I was pushed to the back of the arcade with the other old timers and almost hidden away.

Over the years, somehow I made my way across the country and ended up in Massachusetts. I was located in a dirty old Garage, sitting on my backside, in pieces and not operational. I thought that it was all over for me, perhaps heading for a junk pile of used parts never to be played again. It was the year 2023 and I was 47 years old.

my current owner sold me to three local pinballers with nick names; the captain, mechanic and Tireman. All three are members of pinside, this story teller. They carried me home and saved my life. No longer was I destined to be tortured in arcades anymore but instead would live at someone's house and only be play occasionally.

soon I was all cleaned up and my bulbs and rubbers replaced with new ones. I even got some LED bulbs that were brighter and gave off less heat. All my coils were checked and some replaced, electric contacts cleaned and flippers rebuilt. I looked shinney and new and played great.

I now lived in a clean basement with new friends, some were very fancy and striking. However I remain the wise and older pinball machine among the group. I was a forerunner of the new machines that followed. Made in America, I was a true Icon of the American revolution in 1776 called "Freedom ".


Story photos

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48 days ago

Please publish

37 days ago

Well done. The life of these games is very interesting. I wonder about where all of mine have been during their existence.

37 days ago

Freedom is a truly underrated game!

It is one of the best EM's ever, and one of my personal favorites.

Let those spinners rip!!!!


35 days ago

Great read!

34 days ago

Too bad there’s not a history card that tracks the life of each of the machines new and old. It would be very interesting to see where they have been.
Thanks for the comments.

32 days ago

This is great. I'd be happy to see more of these oldies get a narrative.

28 days ago

Nice job Captain, you told the story that it couldn’t tell.

27 days ago

Thank you my friend, your Captain

27 days ago

One of my good friends after reading my story reminded me of additional abuses to older machines
Like: Rodent infestations, classic cigarette burns, initials scratched, frayed power cords, broken playfield plastics and discarded pins left in storage
Units. All making restoration more difficult.
Sorry for the omissions and I apologize for my shortcomings.

26 days ago

Nice read Cap.! The machine looks great as usual. Game on!

- Vidjay

26 days ago

I am looking for the Solid State version. LMK is you have one!

25 days ago

Sorry game vault, have the EM version only

16 days ago

This is the story of lot of pinball. But you have the nice way for tell it.
than you

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