(Topic ID: 244793)

Need advice on finding pins.


By Sea_Wolf

4 months ago



Topic Stats

  • 21 posts
  • 13 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 months ago by bluespin
  • Topic is favorited by 3 Pinsiders

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    #1 4 months ago

    I’m looking to add to my collection of late EMs from the 70s and early SSs. I’ve bought all 4 of my pins off EBay that were within driving distance but they rarely come up like that and when they do they are mostly way overpriced. Surrounding cities Craigslists are a cesspool with few actual pins.

    Looking for some savvy tips for locating pins in just about any salvageable condition from some of you guys on here. C’mon give up your secrets and help a brother out.

    #2 4 months ago

    Aside from sites like pinside and KLOV, most of the true "deals" are going to be on FB marketplace and the sales apps like Let Go and Offer Up. Have cash and be ready to go the second they are posted as eveyone else is also watching like a hawk .

    #3 4 months ago

    Definitely let pinball people in your area know you are looking for pins and what. Especially if they are looking for something different, they may pass deals onto you.

    LTG : )

    #4 4 months ago

    ^^^ What Lloyd said.

    Louisville has a very large and active pinball community. I wish I still lived there.

    #5 4 months ago
    Quoted from LTG:

    Definitely let pinball people in your area know you are looking for pins and what. Especially if they are looking for something different, they may pass deals onto you.
    LTG : )

    This! The power of pinball networking cannot be overstated!

    #6 4 months ago

    Join a pinball league and network.

    Are you going to any pinball shows this year? There are pinball shows In Louisville, Nashville, Chicago, York PA, Allentown PA and a couple in Ohio. If you’re going to one of these shows look for a forum like the one below. Post what you are looking for and arrange a deal prior to the show.

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/2019-southern-fried-gaming-expo-for-sale-and-wanted-thread-

    #7 4 months ago

    An old timer method for finding pinball machines is to put a want ad into one of those free classifieds newspapers. Such as the Penny Saver, Thrifty Nickel, Green Sheet, etc. I've tried this and it's produced about four machines for me in recent years.

    PINBALL MACHINES WANTED
    Coin Op, Non-Working OK
    Free Pickup, Please Call

    #8 4 months ago
    Quoted from grantopia:

    This! The power of pinball networking cannot be overstated!

    This really is the answer. The last 7 games I bought were all through friends hooking me up with them. Some were right from friends, and some were deals that they didn’t want, but thought I’d be interested in. I haven’t read a Craigslist ad for pinball in years.

    #9 4 months ago
    Quoted from DaveH:

    This really is the answer. The last 7 games I bought were all through friends hooking me up with them. Some were right from friends, and some were deals that they didn’t want, but thought I’d be interested in. I haven’t read a Craigslist ad for pinball in years.

    If you can get to know any local operators or people that know the operators that's always a good connection to have too. I've met alot of the people in the area that either have locations or know people that do so it's easy to get the word out on a game you're looking for and have people keep an eye out.

    #10 4 months ago

    Lots of great tips that are really helpful. Thanks for the responses. Hopefully I can post pics of a purchase here soon. Right now I’m looking to add 2 pins to my small collection.

    It’s funny, I’m a professional residential Painter and have been for 26 years and I always thought I’d run into customers that had old pins in their basements that they’d let go cheap but that’s not been the case. While I was dreaming of finding a Bally Black Jack EM tucked away somewhere I came across one older grandmother that had a Williams Strat-O-Flite in her basement and I asked her to let me know if she ever wanted to get rid of it and she said she might but she heard it was worth about $7000-$8000. I didn’t have the heart to tell her that it might fetch $400 on EBay.

    #11 4 months ago
    Quoted from bluespin:

    Join a pinball league and network.
    Are you going to any pinball shows this year? There are pinball shows In Louisville, Nashville, Chicago, York PA, Allentown PA and a couple in Ohio. If you’re going to one of these shows look for a forum like the one below. Post what you are looking for and arrange a deal prior to the show.
    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/2019-southern-fried-gaming-expo-for-sale-and-wanted-thread-

    Thanks for the advice. They did have an arcade expo here in Louisville back in March. I was looking forward to going but the list of pins at the show was 90% post-1980 pins with only a few from the 1968-1979 era, which is pretty much my thing. I’ll keep my eye out though.

    #12 4 months ago
    Quoted from Sea_Wolf:

    Thanks for the advice. They did have an arcade expo here in Louisville back in March. I was looking forward to going but the list of pins at the show was 90% post-1980 pins with only a few from the 1968-1979 era, which is pretty much my thing. I’ll keep my eye out though.

    The majority of pins at the York PA show are EMs. A lot of em collectors travel from as far away as St Louis, Omaha, etc for that show

    #13 4 months ago

    Networking.

    In the past couple months I have scored 4 DMD machines literally within walking distance of my house ... purely from word of mouth. A friend put me in touch with a business that had a neglected old game in their rest room. And a pinball friend doing a delivery hooked me up with someone local with other games to sell.

    All of these I pounced on quickly, and after some negotiation got for a good price Having cash and being able to do a hassle free deal quickly is key ...before they advertise them on Ebay or other Classifieds.

    #14 4 months ago

    Use local bulletin boards such as in your supermarket, and tack up a printed up page, Wanted. Old Pinball Machines (etc., etc.). Put your name, phone number and the word "pinball" vertically along the bottom edge several times, and partially cut tabs with a scissor so that they can be torn off. I've gotten several machines over the years this way until they removed the bulletin board from the supermarket.

    #15 4 months ago
    Quoted from Ive:

    A friend put me in touch with a business that had a neglected old game in their rest room.

    In England is "rest room" a term to describe a break room or common area? In the states we often refer to the bathroom as the rest room. Not saying I wouldn't buy a decent priced pin if it was located in the bathroom. . . . I just hope people are good about washing their hands!

    #16 4 months ago

    Pins find you. You don't find them. Run while you can before they take over your home and life.

    #17 4 months ago
    Quoted from TractorDoc:

    In England is "rest room" a term to describe a break room or common area? In the states we often refer to the bathroom as the rest room. Not saying I wouldn't buy a decent priced pin if it was located in the bathroom. . . . I just hope people are good about washing their hands!

    Yep - break room / rest area

    #18 4 months ago

    Garage sales in upper middle class and wealthy neighborhoods.

    In the last year, a friend of mine has picked up a Big Game, Eight Ball Deluxe, Flash and Black Knight. He hits 15-20 garage sales every Saturday and Sunday and has found so many really cool items.

    #19 4 months ago

    Persistence...check facebook market place and craigslist a few times per day. Know what game have repo backglasses/plastics available. The last month I found a 1954 Big Ben for a friend of mine for $150. It had a bad glass, but we know that bgresto has them. Since the game was cheap, complete and had good a good playfield and plastics, it made economic sense to buy. Be open to all manufacturers..they all had some good games. Don't get too caught up in game ratings. My favorite EM pin is Williams Strike Zone. It never makes any of these top lists, but it's a great player.

    #20 4 months ago
    Quoted from Buzz:

    Pins find you. You don't find them. Run while you can before they take over your home and life.

    That’s the cold truth, just like every stray animal ends up finding my wife and me at our house.

    #21 4 months ago
    Quoted from bonzo71:

    Persistence...check facebook market place and craigslist a few times per day

    Set up alerts for both sites and check your email and Facebook app a few times a day.

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