First, let me say welcome to my first blog. Thanks to you, AlltekSystems has been the chosen replacement board manufacturer for your early electronic Bally and Stern pinball machines since 1999. It has always been our goal is to assist you in keeping your machine up and running better than ever with our product line. It is our continuing desire to be there when things go wrong with your game. We back up this promise with our lifetime warranty, which is unmatched in the business, and demonstrates how much we believe in our products.
What I'm hoping to accomplish with this blog each month is to highlight a service question that might help others with fixing their pinball machines. Also, if you have a story that you would like to share with the pinball community or a favorite service call, please email that to me. I'd love to include some questions and stories from my customers in these blogs! I started in this business in 1974 and there are so many stories to share. So why don't we start this off by sharing a story that comes to mind, while it is not pinball related but a video game repair story.
I know that I'm dating myself by saying the game was called “Rockin’ Bowl” and the year was 1980. I was working as a Tech/Manager at Kings Dominion in Doswell, Virginia. Our task every morning was to turn on the breakers and go around the arcade full of 200 machines to lock the coin doors and to see if any of the games were not working. On this particular morning, “Rockin’ Bowl” was not coming up, so we dollied it into the back room to investigate. When we plugged the machine in, it started making terrible sounds and was literally rocking back and forth like it was possessed. The other Tech and I just stared at the game and then each other, before we unplugged it. I don’t remember why I was the one to open the game, but I guess I was in charge, so I needed to take one for the team. I proceeded to open the back door when a paw came reaching out! I screamed and took a quick step back before dropping the door of the game. A cat jumped out and ran straight out to the back wall. The cat, not knowing where it was, ran straight into back wall and then continued straight up the wall for 10 feet before falling back down. Then it ran past us, out of the repair shop, and was never seen again. I’m sure it used up at least two of its nine lives that day beside scaring the crap out of my friend and I!
So how did the cat get in the game? Well, when the arcade was closed at night, we would open the games for the people that pulled the money nightly. This was back in the days that the coin boxes would fill up just about every day. The games would stay open all night. The cat was a secret invader who decided that this game would be a nice place to hang out, and unfortunately, it made the mistake of sleeping on the monitor board! In the end though, we all survived!
Thanks for reading and I hope to see you again next month for another fun and/or educational story. Again, if you have a favorite story please send it along to be shared.