Best place to buy pins?

Started 3 years ago by Drano in forum Market > Buying advice.


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Best place to buy pins?

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By Drano

3 years ago

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  • Started 3 years ago
  • 29 posts
  • 18 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 years ago by BinGhanem

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3 years ago

For my very first post I want to know about your favourite places to look for that next pin. I bought my first (TAF) on eBay. Not wanting to repeat that experience, the others were found through retailers... probably a safer bet for a newbie. My MM did come from a fellow collector, but he was on the other side of the country.

Living in Toronto, with very limited local stock available, and being relatively new to the hobby, I've had to buy my machines exclusively from photos... and probably payed a premium for them in the process.

Now, I think I've paid my dues and I've been looking really hard for a nice WH2O without much luck (yes this is also a WTB post). So, I can choose to pay $4-$5K for an unrestored machine, or I gotta find a better way.

So, laugh if you will, but I want to hear from you all (without divulging too many trade secrets), where is your favourite place to find pins...and at prices that I can only seem to find quoted by people on these forums? Show me the (trans)light!


3 years ago

Wait for BR, CoasterGuy or Gorilla to sell here.


3 years ago
Drano said:

places to look for that next pin

I guess it really depends on the type of pin you are looking to buy....


3 years ago

Best way is to meet more collectors and players.


3 years ago

when you live in northern california you wish you could get southern california prices for pins which results in many pin safaris down south for the cheap gold.


3 years ago
dnhayden said:

Drano74 said:places to look for that next pin
I guess it really depends on the type of pin you are looking to buy....

Mostly newer SS for me. Finding a fellow collector is certainly the best bet, agreed... but there have to be great retailers out there too. The guys that don't show up on a google search.


3 years ago
tomdotcom said:

Best way is to meet more collectors and players. Screw buying from a dealer, unless you want to get shafted or want nib...

Agreed, I should have joined the various online communities 5-6 years ago when I started out.


3 years ago

If you can afford it HEP. Expensive but it seems you do get what you pay for, that is if you are thinking in the long term. If you are the person who keeps a pin for a year then sells it, don't bother.


3 years ago
TheStranger said:

If you can afford it HEP. Expensive but it seems you do get what you pay for, that is if you are thinking in the long term. If you are the person who keeps a pin for a year then sells it, don't bother.

I love to work on pins and restore them as much as play them. Sure, I drool over those professional restorations but it takes a lot of the fun out of it for me. However, for the Whitewater I am looking for something that does not require a full reno.


3 years ago

I try to find them in little old ladies basements.


NM

Pinball master
3y
2,138,650
3 years ago
TheStranger said:

If you can afford it HEP. Expensive but it seems you do get what you pay for, that is if you are thinking in the long term. If you are the person who keeps a pin for a year then sells it, don't bother.

Keep in mind HEP only offers restoration services, so he'd still have to have a base game to send to HEP.

Pre-owned HEPs do pop up every now and then.


3 years ago

I'm also having the same issue here, had to buy my last two pins depending on photos and I assure you they do not look the same lol

I do not mind paying little extra, to buy from a trusted dealer than buying from people I do not know/trust on E-bay

there are many people here I'd love to buy from as gambit mentioned.

I have couple of dealers, they msg me whenever they have a new or interesting pin, and if the price is good and the cash is available, I go a head and buy it, I already shipped one pin from US to Dubai, and it cost around 500$, not bad


3 years ago
NM said:

TheStranger said:If you can afford it HEP. Expensive but it seems you do get what you pay for, that is if you are thinking in the long term. If you are the person who keeps a pin for a year then sells it, don't bother.
Keep in mind HEP only offers restoration services, so he'd still have to have a base game to send to HEP.
Pre-owned HEPs do pop up every now and then.

Yeah finding a base game at a reasonable price I'm sure can be a bitch, then pasting on that 5K or so for the full restoration labor and parts, then waiting months in the process. You must really love and want a game in tip top shape to even bother. I plan to give my top fave 3 pins the HEP treatment after I move into my new home when I find it sometime later this year. These are games I'm gonna want to keep for a long long time, and my first three pins to boot.


3 years ago
BinGhanem said:

I'm also having the same issue here, had to buy my last two pins depending on photos and I assure you they do not look the same lol
I do not mind paying little extra, to buy from a trusted dealer than buying from people I do not know/trust on E-bay
there are many people here I'd love to buy from as gambit mentioned.
I have couple of dealers, they msg me whenever they have a new or interesting pin, and if the price is good and the cash is available, I go a head and buy it, I already shipped one pin from US to Dubai, and it cost around 500$, not bad

I hear you. I feel paying a bit more for a reputable source or dealer is worth it for the peace of mind you get. There are just too many douche bags out there.


3 years ago
BinGhanem said:

I'm also having the same issue here, had to buy my last two pins depending on photos and I assure you they do not look the same

More reason to buy that MB you have lined up in the UK for a decent price. [Your quote: "since I'll be there soon, I can arrange the shipping and stuff."] If you can actually see the game in person and know exactly what you are getting, the rest is easy.


justonemore

Pinball addict
3y
1,009,300
3 years ago

bought my games from one source, pay a little more, but have had very few problems ,and his service is fantastic. Would venture outside the box now, but would want to see the game in person.


3 years ago
justonemore said:

bought my games from one source, pay a little more, but have had very few problems ,and his service is fantastic. Would venture outside the box now, but would want to see the game in person.

+1 same here.


3 years ago
justonemore said:

bought my games from one source, pay a little more, but have had very few problems ,and his service is fantastic. Would venture outside the box now, but would want to see the game in person.

C'mon guys, let's name some names! I'm not looking for someone's private info (if you're buying from private sellers), but there have to be some retailers, game-room/billiards stores and even operators that are better sources than most. Let's give them some free advertising.

On another post somewhere people mentioned Al from the pinball warehouse. The average buyer wouldn't find this place easily if searching for "pinball" on a google search. What are some other hidden gems?


3 years ago

Hey Drano

Are you a MACCA member? If not, you should join up.

Also, a web membership to the VRPA (Vancouver Regional) is a good bet.

Both of the org's have a large membership, and tons of contacts. Shipping within Canada is not that bad, and you avoid any customs fee's.

As for operators, start hitting the yellow pages and making phone calls. All my pins have come from OPS. We don't have many retail places up here, besides the usual (Playdium, John's Jukes).


3 years ago

There are lots of good private sellers out there. Best thing to do I've found is to check here or Mr. Pinball for games, then when you find something you like, post a "Seller Check: Insert Name Here" thread. People generally chime in to discuss what they know, and I've had VERY good results that way...


3 years ago

Okay, I'll name names. First, here or other sites like it. Mrpinball.com is good. CL from various states. Ebay is good if a local vendor, and you go see it. Best way is friends and other collectors. You won't get screaming deals here, as we all know values, but you'll find fairly valued and the state of the pinball well explained to you. Out of state and you can always solicit local pinsiders to help eval the pin


3 years ago
smokedog said:

Hey Drano
Are you a MACCA member? If not, you should join up.
Also, a web membership to the VRPA (Vancouver Regional) is a good bet.
Both of the org's have a large membership, and tons of contacts. Shipping within Canada is not that bad, and you avoid any customs fee's.
As for operators, start hitting the yellow pages and making phone calls. All my pins have come from OPS. We don't have many retail places up here, besides the usual (Playdium, John's Jukes).

Thanks smokedog, yup... I just recently joined MACCA and a couple of other groups. I had not heard of John's Jukes but the Playdium store is minutes from me. Okay for parts and new pins, but not a lot of old stock.

Maybe I'll start looking into some local operators. I only know one guy in my area.

Cheers!


3 years ago

Just this morning i put in a "Want to Buy" ad for pinballs at my paper? circulation around 35,000. Anyone ever do this?


3 years ago

We sell games, and haven't had any customer complaints from web sales so far. Our prices are a little higher than collector to collector, but not by tons. We're just mainly selling pins because they don't make any money on the route anymore... looking for any particular titles? We've got about 2 dozen in the showroom, and tons more in warehouses.


3 years ago

I try to buy from other hobbyist/collectors. This does Not include flippers unless it is for a project in which case they haven't touched it. Too often flippers hack them up to get them out the door. I have bought most of my pins from RGP members.


3 years ago
CadillacMusic said:

We sell games, and haven't had any customer complaints from web sales so far. Our prices are a little higher than collector to collector, but not by tons. We're just mainly selling pins because they don't make any money on the route anymore... looking for any particular titles? We've got about 2 dozen in the showroom, and tons more in warehouses.

Well, if you've got a whitewater, shoot me a message and let's talk.


3 years ago
CadillacMusic said:

We sell games, and haven't had any customer complaints from web sales so far. Our prices are a little higher than collector to collector, but not by tons. We're just mainly selling pins because they don't make any money on the route anymore... looking for any particular titles? We've got about 2 dozen in the showroom, and tons more in warehouses.

MB?


3 years ago
CadillacMusic said:

We sell games, and haven't had any customer complaints from web sales so far. Our prices are a little higher than collector to collector, but not by tons. We're just mainly selling pins because they don't make any money on the route anymore... looking for any particular titles? We've got about 2 dozen in the showroom, and tons more in warehouses.

website?


3 years ago

Guess this is the website
http://www.cadillacmusic.com



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