(Topic ID: 218745)

Where are the EMs?

By phil-lee

2 years ago

Topic Stats

  • 11 posts
  • 7 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 2 years ago by JVice
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider


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    #1 2 years ago

    There are so few choices in my area (NC,SC, lower VA) for EMs its depressing. In your opinion, are they all in collections? Or being snapped up so fast I miss them? I started searching State to State and noticed Pennsylvania had a decent selection on Craigslist.
    The price factor always comes into play as well, I'm sure everyone has noticed the same machines languishing with high prices. But some over priced offerings disappear quickly. Is the Market that hot now for electromechanical? With the thousands of these things made there has to be hundreds stored up somewhere, or have so many been destroyed over the Years they are this rare?
    Has Pinside and the internet been so successful with training EM Techs that the complexity no longer holds the fear factor?
    Or have speculators entered buying up everything and holding it in storage,anticipating a future windfall?

    #2 2 years ago

    Unknown condition EMs are about the safest purchase you can make project wise. No boards to replace or repair, no bad displays, etc. Budget $100 for parts and you'll almost never go wrong.

    I don't really see any games at reasonable prices sit on CL, etc though, SS included. And I see way more EMs than SS.

    #3 2 years ago

    I appreciate it Zacaj, and agree, to someone who understands the repair process an EM is a great thing.
    But you are in NY, and I notice there are a lot of machines available Statewide. This must be a regional thing, either NC is a hot Market or we just didn't receive as many machines back in the day.

    #4 2 years ago
    Quoted from phil-lee:

    I appreciate it Zacaj, and agree, to someone who understands the repair process an EM is a great thing.
    But you are in NY, and I notice there are a lot of machines available Statewide. This must be a regional thing, either NC is a hot Market or we just didn't receive as many machines back in the day.

    Actually, I almost never find machines for sale in NY (at least upstate). I end up driving to PA, MA, CT, NJ for them.

    There definitely seem to be less lately though. I picked up about 3-4x as many two years ago as I am now

    #5 2 years ago

    I read some recent Threads across Pinside and think I have a few (but not all) the answers.
    Flippers inspired by TV shows.
    A "Network" of aficionados buying and trading within a circle.
    Fear over Node Boards has made older machines (including SS) much more desirable to collectors and Players.
    People using cell phones to quickly search perceived value, usually hitting Ebay with its speculative prices.
    A resurgence of Commercial Bars featuring vintage Arcades.
    Still,the regional thing is mystifying.PA,MA,CT,NJ,and I would add Ohio is where the machines are, too far for me to drive.
    Maybe I could settle for a 1300 dollar Darling, or that Superman toy for 20 bucks. NC is dry.

    #6 2 years ago

    PA and NJ seem to be where most of the em's ended up. My theory is that many games were sold from shore arcades to private citizens. There is huge population in this area with decent sized homes who would have been able to buy a game or two. The climate is also moderate which may have helped some games in storage survive. Along with CL, check Facebook market place at least twice a day.

    #7 2 years ago

    You may have hit on a very important part of the puzzle bonzo. The many games I remember at Carolina Beach,Nags Head and Topsail Island were probably destroyed along with the piers and bars by many hurricanes and floods over the years. In other words,they didn't migrate Inland.
    After I get my Toyota Van my range will probably increase a few hundred miles, just for the adventure!

    #8 2 years ago

    I agree, NC is a tough area. I've found 1 EM machine in the last 2 years on CL. But, you're not far away. You're welcome to visit.

    #9 2 years ago

    The last couple times I went to the Winston Salem auction there was at least an EM or two. I got my Grand Prix at the auction. I haven't been there in a while though. Prices are too low for me to give up my EMs considering how hard it was to find games I wanted. They're cheap when you want to sell them, and hard to find when you're looking for a nice, local, good game!

    #10 2 years ago

    Funny that I drove six hours each way to get three of my first EM's...from WVa to NC. Jack in the Box, Sure Shot, and 2001, from the Graham and Chapel Hill area. Having family there gave the trips a dual purpose, though. That was a few years ago.
    Speaking of the beach arcades, when I stopped by Coinop Warehouse (Hagerstown, Md) a couple of months ago, they had just brought in 25 or 30 EM's from a former operator in Virginia Beach. They were all projects but in decent shape and the ones I opened had the paperwork in the coin boxes. Lloyd often has pinballs, but his inventory changes almost hourly, so it's hit or miss.

    #11 2 years ago

    Why would a Darling ever be $1300? As soon as I'm happy with the fixing up I'm doing on mine, it's going on the market for less than half that. Of course, mine desperately needs a new backglass.

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