I started with pinball junk. Like absolute free pinball junk. I was lucky a LOT of the time. Sometimes, the junk never materialized into anything playable. But a lot of times it did. Those are some of my favorite games to play. Mainly because I feel like my choices in getting the game functional is part of the reason it plays good and is fun. So, it helps if the game is a classic to begin with, but sometimes the best game ever designed is just not as appealing to me. I'd rather play my Harlem Globetrotters 10 times rather than one ball on Fish Tales or TOTAN.
A few things about "the classics" people speak of and this pinball thing in general:
Rule 1. Condition is everything. If you can make it look like new again, that's great. However, few are good at this skill and there are many impersonators.
-Something that most people do not always want to admit----> The machine that you grew up playing is probably NOT one of the best designed or most timeless playing pinball games today. It could be, but it's not likely.
-You are probably not having much fun playing single player games in your basement. Invite some friends over, have a tournament on Matchplay.com or, start a monthly league.
-MOST people do not mind if the game plays different than when it was in an arcade back in the decade that the game was from. See Rule 1.
-No matter what, someone will always be there to quickly point out that your opinions about pinball are wrong. Not only that, they will NOT be polite about it.
-There is always someone around the corner a bit crazier than you about pinball.
-You are probably not as good at playing pinball as you thought you were.
-For all other concerns or doubts, see Rule 1.