Harry Williams rolled out this unique game with innovative rotating bumpers coupled with the successful moving horse mechanism. This was and still is probably the best version of the popular horse semi gambling games. It’s a beautiful simply a peach of a game aesthetically with its vibrantly colored playfield and cab.
From a players perspective however it’s not an easy game to keep the ball in play, with its lower playfield being a ball drainer probably to keeps it a game of chance. To play well requires good nudging skills. I have relaxed the tilt plumb to see if I can turn this game more in my favor. Op’s choice right!
Back story; I picked up this game from ‘Dirtflipper’ last year over Halloween along with a Centigrade 37 from ‘leckmeck’ and a baseball game from ‘Denis Dodel’ as part of a 1,400 mile road trip from MN to St Louis back to South TX. I reasoned that a road trip with my wife would compensate for the cost of flying to Minneapolis and the one way hire of a minivan back home, which it totally did. Leckmeck had the Centigrade 37 running perfectly when I came to pick up and on my return home I simply plugged it in and played it constantly while restoring the non-playing Nags project. ‘Dirt’ had collected parts including back glass, bumper caps, and a second playfield to replace the one in the game that had deteriorated beyond repair. It still needed new pop bumpers and some lane dividers that are available. Luckily Dirt is a Gottlieb man and has a lot of projects so he was willing to part with it. He recently sent me score cards and schematic scans out of the blue and these were used in the final restore activities. I was able recently to buy an original schematic to go with the game papers (actually this is the only game papers I have).
After considering the pros and cons repainting the cabinet and fixes to the playfield of this particular game leaving the cabinet patina wouldn’t work for this game for me. Especially as some of the carving weren’t just of someone’s loving initials or scores but at least one curse word and other mindless surface damage. So the cabinet paint was color matched with my Pantone color book and had the auto paint mixed perfectly. It was not too evident until I removed the front door frame and flipper guards but it has a pink splatter everywhere except the cabinet bottom and board. I made some stencil masters and from them working stencils (I really hate this part), put up my booth and this gets done over a couple of weekends, no rush. This game was stripped, patched, primed and sprayed a base yellow inside and out. Protected the surface with clear and it gave the matt color a good gloss. This gloss will dim back over the year but good protection for another 25+ years.
The coin denomination plates came out very well. I used the original plates and repaired the reverse side with clear and decals. Didn’t the ball lifter and shooter parts buff up well!
I will upload the restored playfield pictures and highlights next.