Saturday, November 27, 2010

Into the sunset

And this, my friends, is it for a while.  The F-14 is done, for now.  Is it perfect?  Not at all.  However, it's in very nice shape, everything works, all of the parts are there, and it's 1000% better than when I got it.

I had some pretty lofty goals when I started.  Make it perfect.  Factory perfect.  Better than factory perfect.  Knowing next to nothing, it didn't seem unreasonable to shoot for the moon.  Like many of these projects, you start out and wonder, "How hard can it be?  Especially if I'm determined!"

Well, it's hard.  This week it will be 9 months since I started and in that time, I've met a few dozen really great people.  I've traveled 4 different states to find parts, machines, and pinball shows.  I've had the privledge of unboxing a new machine with a new friend, and I've seen how even a brand new machine is imperfect.

Chad and I had the goal of finding a few machines.  I think we thought it would be great to have maybe 3 machines each to work on over the past 9 months.  We've done much better than that.  I've purchased 7 machines and sold 2.  Chad has found 7 machines, and sold one.

This has been a great experience, and I'm so happy to be done.  I was afraid it would end up like other hobbies of mine, where it was fun at first, but then got old and I was done with the hobby before the year was over.  While I may be done detailing my repair efforts on pinball machines, I'm not done with pinball.

I have tournaments to enter, I have my first DMD machine to purchase (Dot matrix display -- basically a more modern game that is expensive), I have a few more machines to clean up, and then Chad and I have to do what we originally set out to do -- Start selling games.

Selling games, just to feed the habit.  You have to be a special person to make a living doing this.  However, I would like to get those fancy games that cost $3,500 each.  The way to do that is to buy a game for $300, fix it up, and then sell it for $1,000.  All the while having fun, meeting people, playing pinball.

Thanks for reading this blog.  I'm not sure what my next updates will be or when, but I'm sure I'll have something to say every month or so.

Here is my current basement lineup.  The F-14 is truely my first shopped machine.  The other three in this shot were purchased with a little more experience and savvy.  They worked pretty well when I got them, all there is to do is to clean them up and play them.

F-14, Mr. and Mrs. Pac-Man, High Speed, Space Station


  1. Just finished reading your entire blog series and it was a pleasure. Your humor and ingenuity kept me engrossed and laughing. I also have a bit of a pinball problem, but have yet to jump off into my first fix-it project. Maybe most important of all, after reading this I feel that first step is closer and more tangible.

    Many thanks,

  2. Great blog! My husband wants to purchase a pinball machine for our game room. We saw online at a game room store but he wanted to buy one from a pawnshop and do the work on it himself. Seems like a ton of work to me.

  3. Thanks very much! It's a lot of work but if you're handy then it's very cathartic.