(Topic ID: 124080)

Gottlieb Mermaid price check...

By swillie

4 years ago

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  • 131 posts
  • 43 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 years ago by reppie
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider


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#1 4 years ago

An acquaintance at my work has a Gottlieb mermaid in his possession. He has had it for many years. Does not boot up, but did a few years ago the last time he used it. I do not know the exact condition of the machine, have not seen any pictures. Supposedely there is a box he was given with it of extra parts, do not know what they are.

So what is this machine worth, sight unseen? An 'expert' quoted him $1000, which I think is very dishonest, but maybe I am wrong about this. If there is a collector out there that has been searching for one of these feel free chime in before I help him throw it on Ebay...

#4 4 years ago

It is the 1951 woodrail. Just talked with the owner, he said the playfield is in nice shape, that it has wear above the plunger, but otherwise is intact. The extra parts are some fuses, bulbs and targets. It doesn't power up at all is more correct, but it did up until about 3 years ago which was the last time he played it. Obviously it needs some tlc, but sounds promising. He is going to have it fixed. He might sell it, and I am trying to help him gather information on what a fair price is.
Located north of Detroit, MI.

#10 4 years ago

Probably the authority on planet Earth as far as EM pinball repair is the one who will be fixing it, so as far as that goes it is in very very good hands.

#12 4 years ago

Thanks for your advice my friends. I will certainly pass it along when I see the owner next week, and hopefully I can have hime bump me a few pictures to post as I too really want to see this thing. If it is in nice original condition what a great find. He has owned it for some 30 years so it has been in a time capsule of sorts all that time.

#19 4 years ago
Quoted from MikeO:

Sounds like you have Clay lined up to get it working. If so you are in very capable hands.
Also, you don't need our help in valuing this game if Clay is around. He will be able to price it and actually owns an exceptional example of this game.

You are correct. I put the owner in contact with Clay, who obviously knows this machine very well. However, this is who gave him the estimate, sight unseen. To be honest it angered me when I heard this. I know it is impossible to value a pin without seeing it, but this one seems to be one of those exceptions to that rule. Maybe there is a conflict of interest there, as Clay might likely be interested in this pin himself. I don't know, it is not mine so not my decision in the end what he decides to do. I don't know Clay personally but suggested him because he is in our area and comes well recommended and knows this machine. At this point I don't know what to think, other than he should get it fixed and see who has an interest out there, maybe place it in the pinside marketplace and see what the interest is so that he can do well and someone who does not have one of these and really wants one can finally own one at a fair arrangement for both parties.

#71 4 years ago

Well it looks like I started a food fight in the cafeteria here and I apologize for that. I certainly did not mean for that to happen. As I stated in the original post I had and still have not seen this machine, or even a picture of it. I only see the owner every week or two. I asked to be sent some pictures, but have not received any yet. I guess the value of this pin with respect to it's condition will remain debatable, like most things. I put him in touch with Clay and judging by his opinion of pictures of the machine, I would say that the owner's description to me of it's condition was fairly off the mark. If Clay says it's trashed and not a candidate for restoration I am inclined at this point to believe him. I don't suppose the owner would care if Clay posted a couple of those pictures on this thread so we all could see the %*$# thing already. He is not a pinsider anyway. I can't wait to see him again so I can discuss what "is the playfield worn down to the wood, or is the artwork intact ?" means. Seems like a simple question to me.

#112 4 years ago

I laughed pretty hard when Walt let me know what he found out about said "mermaid" pinball machine. I am very sorry for all the fuss my post caused, kind of a grand entrance onto this forum I guess. Also sorry I haven't posted since the first day or so... some of the posts forced me to go into radio silence till I could get ahold of the owner and verify some of the things being claimed here...like Walt said...draw your own conclusions.

" I'm talking about something important, like discipline and duty and honor and courage. And you ain't got none of it! " Seargent Hulka

Thanks Walt for straightening this all out and being understanding about the mistake, if not disappointed. Sometimes you never know when you are going to meet awesome people in this world.

#122 4 years ago
Quoted from cfh:

I saw pics of this game. The lower 1/3 of the playfield is worn to wood and delaminated (like nearly every mermaid.) The game is trashed in my opinion. If you can get past the visuals, the game is still unplayable and would be impossible to repair to playable condition. Looks are everything on this game too. A worn mermaid is worth next to nothing in my opinion.

Quoted from cfh:

Incidentally the guy bought the mermaid for $100. Pretty sure even at $500 he's doing fine.

Quoted from cfh:

I don't think there's but 2 or 3 mermaids in existence that need playfields.

The owner of this 'Scuba' as it turns out told me it was a Gottlieb Mermaid and that many years ago he paid $100 for it. I directed him to contact yours truly above, which he did. What he never ever did do, was take even one picture of it. Had he done so in the first place I would not have needed to start this thread to try and validate the way undervalued quote he was given, assuming it was a 1951 Gottlieb Mermaid anyway.

Unless of course there is another guy in the Metro Detroit area who knows someone who paid a $100 for a Mermaid years ago and also contacted yours truly above just this past week, but sent him pictures of the thing and it had a trashed playfield and he was given the exact same lowball quote.

Lets give him the benefit of the doubt. It could happen, afterall there is like 2 or 3 of these things left in the world right?

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