(Topic ID: 106338)

Making New Home Run Plastics for Baseball Games

By SteveinTexas

5 years ago

Topic Stats

  • 26 posts
  • 13 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 53 days ago by SteveinTexas
  • Topic is favorited by 3 Pinsiders


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    There have been 20 images uploaded to this topic. (View topic image gallery).

    Home Run Plastic.jpg
    Vacuum Rubber Sealer.JPG
    PETG plastic Target.JPG
    Hips Plastic Target.JPG
    Vacuum Forming Box.JPG
    VAC Arrgt.JPG
    New Plastic Rear View.JPG

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    #1 5 years ago

    From 1963 through 1966 some William’s bat games have plastic home run targets. This home run plastic was poorly designed at the top of the target where the plastic material is thinned due to the forming process at this location. They must have sold a lot of replacements.

    Games are;
    • 1963 Major League,
    • 1963 Big Inning (Chicago Version)
    • 1964 Grand Slam,
    • 1966 Pitch and Bat and Big League.

    Major League 63.JPG
    1963 Major League
    The Major League home run plastic is the most intricate. It has backlit ‘arrows’ telling you when the extra Inning feature is active. Hit a home run while lit and you get more innings, yippee. This is a one player game that sets randomly the number of runs for you to beat.

    Big Inning 64.JPG
    1963 Big Inning
    The Big Inning (Chicago Version) has no picture available in the IPDB. It has no backlit lights as was not a feature of this game. Otherwise very similar to the 63 Major League plastic target.

    Grand Slam 64.JPG
    1964 Grand Slam
    The Grand Slam is a two player game. Again no backlit extra inning feature nor does it show the ‘Home Run’ wording below the target, if you played the games at the time you should know where to hit the ball so by now the sign was redundant I guess.

    Pitch & Bat, Big League.JPG
    1966 Pitch and Bat and Big League
    Different striped markings on a white background.

    Most games you see for sale on eBay etc this home run plastic is in terrible shape especially on the Major League and Grand Slams. There has been a few topics on getting a replacement made as it is not commercially viable I guess, but nothing so far. So following Clay's vacuum forming article and other internet tutorials and some encouragement from fellow Pinsider's with these games I have made them. They are not quite as good as the originals on close inspection but they are close.

    New Major League Home Run Plastic
    Major League and Grand Slam (Big Inning not shown)

    Major League Art

    New Plastic Rear View.JPG
    Back View of plastic

    How it was Made
    VAC Arrgt.JPG
    Vacuum Forming Box.JPG
    Vacuum Box; 4"X 1" lumber, peg board and MDF bottom board. Drill hole for your wet vac. Note you need a new clean filter for vacuuming activities and it must stay clean! Make the mold for the plastic and sand no more than 400 grit.

    Hips Plastic Target.JPG
    Success…eventually no webbing. White 'hips' acrylic 0.60" thick.

    PETG plastic Target.JPG
    PETG form success. More difficult due to needing less time to heat up and lower temperature than the hips plastic. Again using 0.60" thick material.

    Vacuum Rubber Sealer.JPG
    Tried a lot of weather-strip (vacuum necessity) eventfully used the rubber sponge and this was usable a few times.

    The grill was the limiting factor for the size I could form. Note the grill heat deflectors have to be in the correct place (not as in picture). This is critical to form anything successfully.

    The mold needs to be raised of the pegboard more than its thickness so there was 3/4" wood spacers under the mold each time and that was on pennies to maximize the vacuum. If not you get webbing. A beer to celebrate!

    I originally made the home run plastics with white ‘Hips’ acrylic but eventually settled on a clear PETG material with a reverse clear decal painted over white on the back. This was to accommodate the Major League Lights. The white hips material could be fine for the 1966 Pitch and Bat/Big League plastics with a decal on the front. I have this material but have not developed the decal. Now I know what to do I can probably get a success vacuum form 75% of the time using the home equipment available. I used my wet vac, homemade vacuum table, BBQ grill and lots of failure. However, eventually we worked it all out and get a consistent part… most of the time.

    I have made extra home run plastics to defray my costs so if people want them and tell me the game I can offer probably what they need. The cost will be $65 + shipping ($7.00). That will cover most of the set up costs. so pin mail me guys.

    Regards Steve J.

    Post edited by SteveinTexas: Firmed up cost and shipping

    #6 5 years ago

    I have you included Pat. Send you a PM. Confirmed the price at $65.00 and postage looks be no more than $7.00. (Waiting for the USPS boxes to arrive then weigh).


    #7 5 years ago


    A guy in California has a bunch of NOS red ramps, sells them on eBay all the time. (Not today though) so can't link. His tel # is 562 867 3114 and his eBay name is 'warehouseclutter03'. $50 per set. Additionally I got a good set made by a fellow pinsider in Canada called Kevin Godwin I believe?

    I am not a graphics guy, my art was done by Andre Leeder of Griffin Creative Company, Sugar Land Texas. If you have the original, software guys with a scanner can get it sorted in an hour or so. If you have a 'Fast Signs' near you, ask them to do the art and print the decal. After I had mine competed they said they would have done it for about $50. They take a digital picture and clean it up for you they said, then you workout the copying.

    There has been topics here on free software so i will look into that for the future. The piece of plastic you can get from eBay.


    #8 5 years ago

    I have one bat lever assembly (made 5) left if any one needs one. I have three baseball games in the restore line and this is extra. I am not planning to make more as so time consuming. Never say never but....

    $110 + postage.

    Steve J.

    This one has sold Oct 21 . (I believe I have the parts to make one more so PM if you are in need you never know...).

    Jan 08, 2015; Put parts together and it has sold too. Hardest part was making the bat but as we have a supplier I could make a run again but need at least three people wanting one to make it a project.

    Happy New Year.


    #11 5 years ago

    The oven was so small. It was my wife's idea to use the grill. I wanted to buy a larger oven as she is such a good cook, but she saw through me.

    The material holder needed to be 25 1/2" wide so most grills will struggle with that width. The good part is it works. The mold should have been a reverse mold but after making four normal molds I was past making another. Its not perfect but ...


    Its making a mold that takes a little time. If you have the original part then Clay explains how he made one with bondo. If you have that I can probably get it done in an hour or to.

    I have the new plastic on my working game and am testing as hard as i can. I just can't hit the bloody fast ball!

    1 week later
    #14 5 years ago

    Your very welcome.

    Steve J

    4 months later
    #18 4 years ago

    In stock, PM responded.

    You have good taste Hoov!

    2 weeks later
    #22 4 years ago

    You are all very welcome. Sell a couple more and I will break even

    1 week later
    #24 4 years ago

    it does look good. i was pleased how this version came out.

    Steve j.

    4 years later
    #26 53 days ago
    Quoted from Boycer:

    You still have plastics? 1964 Williams Grand Slam

    Missed your post sorry. Yes making more. Expect ready early November.

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