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Bally Bingo machines - a story
I suspect that many NLG members also have interests in pinball, well I do
anyways, so here is an interesting(?) story about an unusual buy.
About a year ago I came across a Bally Tahiti Bingo pinball machine that
was found in the back storage room, still in its shipping carton. I
don't have all the facts about that, but I understand that the person
that found it took it out of the box, set it up, plugged it in, and it
didn't work. He didn't know what to do with it so he sold it a
couple of guys in Louisville, KY that restore pinball machines.
They hadn't worked on a bingo pinball before and decided they didn't want
to tinker with it so it was put it on Ebay. I saw the price climb
to $450 and then stopped climbing after being posted for a couple days,
but it still had a week to go on the auction. I use Jaybidwatcher
to automatically post my real bid in the last 6 seconds of an Ebay
auction and I had a feeling that others were doing the same so I
contacted the seller and offered him $xxxx if he would stop the auction
and sell it to me now. The Tahiti was manufactured in July 1976 and
had no plays on it. How often does something like that come
along? So he took it off Ebay. He told me that he got a lot
of complaints from others who were planning to bid but hadn't. I
don't trust shippers so I drove down to Louisville and got the Bingo
machine (thank you Budget rental with unlimited mileage). Well the
machine really didn't take much to get it working. There are a lot
of lubed mechanisms in a bingo and the lube from 1976 became the glue of
2010. A lot of cleaning off old lube and applying new took care of
the problems, though there was one plastic piece broken on a ganged set
of switch contacts but a bit of CA (superglue) repaired that.
Normally I wouldn't post anything about pinball on this forum, but a
Bally Bingo pinball is very similar to a slot machine in that it has a
progressive 'payout'. Mine pays out in credits though I have seen
one that had a coin payout similar to a Liberty Bell console that I used
to own. Normal mechanical pinball machines typically allow about 15
credits or so. This Bally Tahiti Bingo pinball allows up to 1400
credits. You can 'wager' up to 40 coins per game ($10 a
game). As you wager more coins the payout odds usually
increase. All you need to then is shoot up 5 balls, get them to
drop into the desired holes on the playfield and watch the credits
rise. I understand that if you knew the bartender well enough you
would ask him to come over to look at the machine credits and if you had
400 credits, he would power cycle the machine (resets the credit counter)
and though illegal, he would bestow $100 on you.
So there are similarities with slots: you invest cash, you play the game,
and you get paid off if you know the bartender.
This is only my second bingo machine. If I remember correctly, the
coin counter on my first machine was just over 300,000. By the time
I got this one working right, the coin counter was at 000123.
Well, it's not a slot machine story but I thought it might provide
interesting reading. I will attach a photo just in case someone
here hasn't seen a bingo.
If I were reading something like this I would be curious what price was
paid. Some of you will think I am crazy (especially if you don't
like bingos) and some might think I got a good deal, but I paid
$2000. I am happy with my purchase and I guess that's what really
counts. I took the cardboard shipping container it was in (don't
know why) and I still have it.
I have been told that Bally Bingo pinball machines were common in Las
Vegas. I don't think I have ever seen one in an older movie filmed
in Las Vegas. Anyone know about this?
bingos took all my paper route money, thanks mom for bailing me out so
many times with the paper bill, My 1st bingo was a plam springs bally
1954, at 1 point we had 20 bingos out in local stores making real $$$ in
nj , the tahiti was a dog as far as making money we also found them
nib from ky area , with miss uni , and some dixelands tahti ,miss uni
were 200 each dixeland were 600 to my door in nj , bingo were way ahead
of their time,
Hmmm, tough crowd.
From your post: the tahiti was a dog as far as making money we also
found them nib from ky area , with miss uni , and some dixelands tahti
,miss uni were 200 each dixeland were 600 to my door in nj , bingo were
way ahead of their time,
From my post: Some of you will think I am crazy (especially if you don't
like bingos) and some might think I got a good deal, but I paid $2000.
I think that I will chalk that up to a vote for crazy. I am curious
though how many years back that was. If it was recent, I would
really like to buy more bingos NIB at 200 or 600 each. They aren't
commonplace in Minnesota. Actually, the 2 that I have owned are the
only 2 that I have seen in Minnesota. When I mentioned that I would
be selling my used Tahiti, it took about 10 minutes to sell it and I did
better than the NIB prices you mentioned. I had no reservation
about purchasing this Tahiti NIB for $2000. I looked at the
difference between what I was paying for a NIB and what I got for my used
Tahiti as a restoration fee to get an incredible restoration.
A few years ago I simply ran out of room in my home to place new toys and
still keep the house looking neat and a pleasant pleasant place to live instead
of a machine warehouse. A collector friend of mine had told
me that when that happens you change from collecting quantity to
collecting quality and that's just what I did. I have replaced
almost all of my machines and now all but one of my pinballs looks like
it just came out of the box.
Some of my purchases have been great and a few not so great. I did
well on my 64 Cadillac and on a 54 Williams All Star Baseball. If
NIB bingos can still be purchased for 200 - 600, then I will have to
classify this one as a not so great and follow it up with buying a few
more bingos NIB.
You could clarify something though since you were an avid bingo
player. You mentioned that you put your paper route money in.
OK, you put money in, so what did you get out? On my Tahiti all you
get are credits if you win. Did the bingo you played vend credits,
cash, did someone at the store pay off the credits, or did you just play
Well, thanks for the info. Please let me know if NIB bingos can
still be had for 200 - 600 and I am also quite interested in your
experience with playing bingos.... why did you put your paper route money
I,ll say mid 80,s when we bought that load from south to nj ,
but we still see a few used but nice shape bingos at
auctions in nc theres one this sat june 4th there you can buy
then for around 100 bucks each there was just a huge auction in
ashville nc in april had aleast 50 bingos there , the flipper pinball
buyer don,t know how to repair a bingo so they stay away from
them, the oldest one we had out was a atlantic city 3
card it was from early 50,s
you,ll love this site http://bingo.cdyn.com/
yes when i started playing bingos it was a nickel we used to put in 5 to
10 coins a shot you could put in a few hundred coins on some game
to advance odds , and other stuff if we hit a 100 replays we got 5
bucks , once the game is turned off and then on the relay drops out and
those games count down and go on a meter so the game owner
know how much was really paid out from the store keeper , the last ones
we ran were on 25 cent play , one good thing about bingos when places got
raided they took 8 liners and pokers but always left bingos cause they
were so heavy
?? Story ??
?? 1400 Credits ??