(Topic ID: 217720)

Have you ever found a free Pinball Machine?


By CollinT

1 year ago



Topic Stats

  • 64 posts
  • 57 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by srmonte
  • Topic is favorited by 4 Pinsiders

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    There are 64 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
    #1 1 year ago

    Please post your stories and pictures if you have any. I enjoy hearing about these, but haven't found one myself.

    #2 1 year ago

    No but I got my first two machines, Black Hole and Time Zone for 25 bucks apiece. Took the guy who was working for me to pay his rent and his landlord had these two games in his building. Offered them both for 50 bucks. Close to free as Ive gotten.

    #3 1 year ago

    I've heard the stories, but I haven't been that lucky.......

    #4 1 year ago

    Not free but pick up a flying carpet, gorgar, and lancers plus a box of pinball boards for 450$ Canadian. Sold the board to a Pinsider for 225$ usd. Best deal I’ve ever gotten.

    #5 1 year ago

    No so far I haven't been lucky enough to find a free game.

    #6 1 year ago

    Found an F-14 in a construction dumpster right in front of my apartment.

    Can you imagine just opening your door, walking out to the sidewalk, and seeing that, on a nice sunny afternoon? was pretty surreal.

    Game was complete and generally in nice shape minus missing translite and speaker panel. Def could have been salvaged but I just picked off the playfield and head and got it in a cab. Boardset was complete and in awesome shape, fully working. I think mostly used to save a Cyclone. It's at least 10 years I still have the playfield and it's still giving me valuable parts every now and then, just used a VUK assembly for a Dr Dude.

    Also found a gottlieb system 80 widebody on the street but not much was there. No playfield or backglass, the rest was there. I think I took the displays and boards but have never really used them for anything.

    #7 1 year ago

    I got a free Rolling Stones pin about 25 years ago. The lady wanted it out of her house and I also got a free Black Hole.

    #8 1 year ago

    Yes, but nothing too exciting. It was an EM game that someone wanted out of their basement. So I took it apart, hauled it up in pieces, put it back together and hauled it away.

    I've gotten my fair share of decent $50-$250 games, though.

    #9 1 year ago

    I got my first machine for free. It was a really beat Black Rose that sat in my old bosses garage for 8 years. It needed a lot of work but it was a good first game and I learned a lot.

    13
    #10 1 year ago

    Them guys in Texas found a perfectly good KISS in a dumpster......

    #11 1 year ago

    I had a buddy have someone pay him 50 bucks to take a working game away because they were moving.

    #12 1 year ago

    We've all heard the "someone gave me a machine free" stories but I really like the "I FOUND" a free machine story.

    #13 1 year ago
    Quoted from ForceFlow:

    Yes, but nothing too exciting. It was an EM game that someone wanted out of their basement. So I took it apart, hauled it up in pieces, put it back together and hauled it away.
    I've gotten my fair share of decent $50-$250 games, though.

    Could be real exciting depending on the EM. To some anyway.

    My uncle gave me a Big Inning P&B and Chicago Coin Big Top Rifle game. The Big Inning had 3 silver dimes in it. I've gotten a few other games for less than $100.

    #14 1 year ago
    Quoted from CollinT:

    Please post your stories and pictures if you have any. I enjoy hearing about these, but haven't found one myself.

    Yes. Gottlieb Atlantis. Beautiful cosmetic condition. Here's the story...

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/my-first-free-pinball-machine-yesterday-was-a-great-day

    There is another thread about free pinball machine stories if you enjoy reading them...

    http://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/tell-the-story-about-a-pinball-machine-you-got-for-free

    #15 1 year ago

    I was driving down an old country road. I saw a machine sitting in a field. This is in Canada in February. I knocked on the door they said , take it away. Too far gone to restore but many free parts . It was a skateball.

    #16 1 year ago

    $25.00 Gotlieb Totem... Great shape, not wanted because it would not light up!
    Got it home , changed a fuse and worked perfectly...

    #17 1 year ago

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/kick-off-rehab

    see also: my Avatar.

    i have now given this machine to someone else, for $40 after he insisted giving me something.

    #18 1 year ago

    Save a mostly complete FirePower from the dumpster. 3 or 4 games picked up for free

    #19 1 year ago

    Yes, a bingo one Fun Way

    #20 1 year ago

    My first machine (CBW) was a gift from my wife, but I don't think that counts.

    I pulled a Bally EM body out of a metal recycling dumpster a couple of years ago... title escapes me, but I passed along the body to otaku for free. I sold the board with all the internals at Allentown for dirt-cheap and wish I hadn't because I now have a Bally EM that I like and would like to have some donor parts around.

    I took in a TZ and T2 from a neighbor "as a loan" because they didn't have space for them. TZ was rough, but I got it running nice. They bought a bigger house and asked for the TZ back and offered the T2 for free for my work on the TZ.

    -Rob
    -visit http://www.kahr.us to get my daughterboard that helps fix WPC pinball resets or for my replacement LED display boards for model H & model S Skee Ball

    #21 1 year ago

    Does trading weed for a machine count? If so, may have a couple to list.

    #22 1 year ago

    A few weeks after Hurricane Sandy (after the power finally came back on), I'm in my front yard doing some clean up work when my father calls me and says that a neighbor down the road just put a pinball machine out front for garbage pick up. I raced over as quickly as I could (almost left my lawnmower running in the front yard). It turned out to be a Disco Fever, luckily the water hadn't gotten to the cabinet so no water damage. Fast forward about month after shopping a board repair and viola, a working Disco Fever. Ended up giving it to by brother as a Christmas present that year.

    #23 1 year ago

    I've gotten about 6 free pins over the years. Most were non-working EMs...

    #24 1 year ago

    I have actually ended up with 3 or 4 lower end machines for free but each time they were over 200 miles away so fuel basically cost me almost as much as machines were worth at the time. Two came from Ron up in NYC - in the past he would post a free one from time to time and somehow I got in on a couple of them over the years. The third one was about 3 hours north of me here in Central PA. Guy had it listed on Craig's Lost without a price - I contacted him and told him "with the cost of the drive I couldn't pay much over $100 for it". His reply was "I don't want anything for it I just want it out of my garage". I tried to give him the hundred when I picked it up but he wouldn't take it.

    There might have been one or two more but if there were they we "come along" machines that were free when I was buying other stuff. Nothing worth talking about as far as those go.

    #25 1 year ago

    I only buy free pinball machines.

    #26 1 year ago

    It's hard to leave the house without returning with a free machine. Go Figure

    #27 1 year ago

    My second machine was a non working Blackout. Get it out of my basement was the price. Replaced a bad transistor in the blanking circuitry, along with the 40 pin connectors, and has been working great ever since. We're talking about 20 years!

    #28 1 year ago

    2 free and working EMs over the years. A Gottlieb Big Shot and Flip-A-Card. My mom is in real estate, so she sometimes finds pins that people don't want to move.

    #29 1 year ago
    Quoted from tamoore:

    Them guys in Texas found a perfectly good KISS in a dumpster......

    Dang....I was gonna put up the link to the infamous "Pinballers" but it seems to have been scrubbed from the internet.

    #30 1 year ago

    A BH a HH and a Pinball Pool but those were years ago.

    #31 1 year ago

    A guy came over to my shop and said he had old pinball games in a barn on a property he just bought.
    He asked if I wanted to buy them, I said no due to the fact that they may have weather damage to them being in a barn for a long time.

    2 days later in the morning, when I arrived at my shop there were 6 pins lined up by the front door.
    2 firepower II
    1 gorgar
    1 black rose
    1 firepower 1
    1 silverball mania

    They sat in my shop for 4 years because they needed restoration and over time I forgot I had them, however they all booted up.
    I ended up selling them "as-is" one by one to a guy who was fixing them up.

    #32 1 year ago
    Quoted from PismoArcade:

    Dang....I was gonna put up the link to the infamous "Pinballers" but it seems to have been scrubbed from the internet.

    Goodbye, pinballers. We barely knew thee....

    #33 1 year ago

    Williams Aztec, my friend knew I like pinball so he took it from another friend and gave it to me. I then donated it to where I work for kid with disabilities. It needed work to get it going but now has been there for 2 years and some of the kids really like it so the place is talking about getting some more.

    #34 1 year ago

    Here's a classic from the old RGP days. A Safecracker found upside down in the mud behind a pub in Scotland. A fun find for the OP.

    https://groups.google.com/forum/#!searchin/rec.games.pinball/SAFECRACKER$20MUD%7Csort:date/rec.games.pinball/AgO7XSZTUK0/yR2LKKk1yWQJ

    #35 1 year ago

    The thread doesn’t come up

    #37 1 year ago

    I was a lurker on here for a while. I saw an add for a free em in Ohio and that's what made me make a profile.

    I didn't get the game but have been a pinsider since

    #38 1 year ago

    My neighbor at the end of our street, knew I had pinball's (garage open / games inside / people / kids playing all the time).

    One day he rang my doorbell and said his client had a pinball game he wanted out of his house. They loaded it in my neighbor's truck and it was in front of my driveway. We (neighbor & I) off loaded it into my garage.

    I gave it a quick clean and sold it down the road for $250. That was about 15 years ago. Game was Bally's Night Rider.

    #39 1 year ago

    Speaking of free.....

    Too much work and too far for myself to go grab, but have at it.
    omaha.craigslist.org link

    #40 1 year ago
    Quoted from HHaase:

    Speaking of free.....
    Too much work and too far for myself to go grab, but have at it.
    omaha.craigslist.org link

    I just picked this up today from a very nice lady!
    No boards or displays and the BG is toast, but the cab and pf are decent! Dont know for sure what ill do with it yet but it was FREE!

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    #41 1 year ago

    Glad somebody here got it. Man was I tempted, but I held off. I've got enough projects in various hobbies.

    #42 1 year ago
    Quoted from HHaase:

    Glad somebody here got it. Man was I tempted, but I held off. I've got enough projects in various hobbies.

    I have a few too many projects too...”coughs the Medusa sitting behind it.”

    But it was the right price, may be cost prohibitive to buy new boards and displays but who knows...

    #43 1 year ago

    Was all lined up to help remove two separate machines free, both deals fell through last minute.

    Oh well, can't complain, the hunt is still the fun part for me.

    Always glad to see others having that special day.

    #44 1 year ago
    Quoted from Spitfiren8:

    I have a few too many projects too...”coughs the Medusa sitting behind it.”
    But it was the right price, may be cost prohibitive to buy new boards and displays but who knows...

    If you need to offload some of those project, or even just need to clear some space, I'm in a buying mood and 2.5 hours away
    Though I won't lie, I'm also being kinda picky and cheap.

    #45 1 year ago

    This Playboy was found at the curb while the snow was coming down on a cold winter day.

    famRmPins 005 (resized).JPG

    #46 1 year ago

    I got a free Addams Family from my sister in law. She never played it. But the playfield was de-laminating and needed to be replaced. Turnout to be my first playfield swap. That was about 12 years ago. Sold it for $5000 six years later.

    #47 1 year ago
    Quoted from Spitfiren8:

    I just picked this up today from a very nice lady!
    No boards or displays and the BG is toast, but the cab and pf are decent! Dont know for sure what ill do with it yet but it was FREE!

    Quoted from Spitfiren8:

    I just picked this up today from a very nice lady!
    No boards or displays and the BG is toast, but the cab and pf are decent! Dont know for sure what ill do with it yet but it was FREE!

    BG Resto makes the back glass for Stars. With that nice play field it could live again.

    #48 1 year ago

    Yes, quite a few times actually.
    It is based on networking and helping others.
    The last time was two weeks ago.
    I picked up four machines outside of Phoenix, AZ and the owner gave me a fifth machine, Firecracker (Bally, 1971) German export for free.
    He knew I could use the machine for trade purposes or conduct a proper restoration and it would not just show up on Craigslist.

    #49 1 year ago

    Yes. Got this one about a month ago. Had no legs or lockdown bar. Had been sitting in a warehouse since 2003 or so.

    The phone call went something like this.

    “Hey Jared, I see you posting all them pinballs on Facebook all the time, I know you’re into that stuff, say, I got some machine over here some monster something been sitting here a long time maybe you can come over here and pick it up and get it out of my way.”

    Picked it up. Dirty, but great shape overall. Boots. Works!

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    415BAE39-26EB-4C7B-9268-1E41EADA5C70 (resized).jpeg

    #50 1 year ago

    I have got a Indiana Jones for free that was sitting in a corner of luchroom of Shell oil company in Rotterdam/Holland.
    I asked someone about it and gave him my number.
    After a few day he called me back and said i could pickup the game.
    When i asked about how much they wanted for it he said just pick it up !

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