OK, the games came today via truck. I have a bunch of pictures to post, which will follow.
The big questions I had with this seller are largely answered. Stuff like, Are the games that are shipped the same games I 'ordered'? (Because there were multiples of most games.) What type of hidden things would be lurking? How much was this ultimately going to cost me?
Bottom line, I think the seller is good and did a decent job. Probably as good as anyone could expect. If his prices were like 20% lower, heck i would buy a full container. But to be honest, given the quality (or lack of) with these games, and the price they are asking, it's a marginal deal. But hey i knew that going in, this isn't a surprise.
His packing was really good. Games were shrink wrapped, then bubble wrapped, shrunk again, strapped to a plastic pallet, and shrunk wrapped again. Cardboard use used on corners for the most part. Even the guy driving the truck said they did a nice job packing the games. Balls were not removed, but they stuffed paper towels in the holes so the balls would not get loose. (interesting!) Coin doors were unlocked. All the backboxes had keys. Overall the "hacks" were at a minimum.... But frankly i bought less popular games that probably didn't get as beat as say an Addams Family. (I bought, in addition to 4 Zacarria pinballs, Stargate, Hurricane, Road Show, Pinball Magic, Stern Grand prix, Dirty Harry.)
There was some battery corrosion. Nothing really bad, but most games with batteries had some. I deal with that all the time so it doesn't phase me much anymore. Legs were a mess for sure. But some rust remover bath cleared that up for the most part. Leg bolts, well only about 1/2 are usable. Amazingly from the games i've set up, the leg plates in the cabinets cleaned up with a 3/8" x 16 tap, which really surprised me. Leg levelers were a complete joke, but it's that way with any game i buy so that's nothing. Top glass was all tempered (which really surprised me, usually you get some plate glass in a game or three.) Score displays, so far, have all been working. And the games i've converted to 120 volts so far have booted.
So is this for everyone? HELL NO. These games will need a lot of work. For the casual guy, you're better off buying a game already here (and paying more), then going through what I'm doing. I'm pretty experienced at taking basket cases and making them decent games. So this plays into my wheel house, but for most people, this is beyond their capabilities. Again if the games prices were lower, it may be worth the risk. But at the prices asked, you really getting ready to pay yourself 5 cents an hour to restore the games.
I must stress the only reason i did this 10 game container deal was to get the Zaccaria games and the Stern Grand Prix. Frankly I just can't find Zac games over here for any reasonable price. His prices were OK (basically $600 a Zac, plus the shipping and fees). Not great but i can deal with it given I now have a Robot, Zankor, Magic Castle, and a Hot Wheels. Those games just don't live in any numbers here (they are Italian made after all.) Heck there's only one other known Zankor in North American. Robots is really hard to find too. Hot Wheels, maybe 5 in all of North America? And the Stern Grand Prix, at least to me, is cool (I don't like Nascar), and probably less than 10 in the U.S.
Interestingly, some games had German markings and coin doors with German monies. Most were Italian money though. Only Stern Grand Prix (the newest game) was Euro!
I also must stress that it is very important to look at his pictures closely. He had nearly all damage areas and issues in the pictures. He did a really nice job with that, in my opinion. Not everything came through, but most things did.
(If you're a Pinball Ninja member, you will also have access to a movie on the games in the near future.)