When I think of vintage pinball machines, I think of the old woodrail machines, which were manufactured in the early 1960’s and before. They were called woodrail pinballs because they had wood rails down the sides of the machine and a wood frame around the back glass. I used to own vintage woodrail pinball machine called “Gusher” that my dad bought for me from a bar back in the late 60’s for $200. I tell you, you couldn’t find one like that now for that price! Pinball machines for sale online
If you’re a little younger than me, you’ll consider machines that came out in the 1960’s and 1970’s to be vintage pinball machines. This is the period when pinball was king – before coin-operated video games came out. One of my favorite vintage pinball machines from this era was called “King Kool”. It was a really fun machine with double flippers on each side. When I look back at pictures of that machine, it looks so simple, compared with the modern machines from the last 10 or 15 years.
Back in the 1960’s and early 1970’s, all pinballs were what were known as Electromechanical, or EM machines. They had reels that turned around to show the score, or lights that shown through the backglass. If you’re looking for vintage pinball machines, you would probably be talking about any of the machines that were built before 1977. In 1977, the advent of the Solid State, or SS pinball machine came about, and the industry was changed forever. Now, circuit boards and digital displays took over.
Solid state pinball machines are cool, with their music and talking, but there is just something about the old vintage pinball machines that can’t be beat, with their spinning reels and bells and lights!