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My TAF gets restored

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  • My TAF gets restored

    Anyone who has been to my house knows I have a lot of projects in line. I have a hard time turning down a deal, even if it means storing games for a year or more.

    Back in 2005 or 2006 (would have to look back to recall exactly when..), I had a former route operator contact me. He had some pins in a shed. His story was that years ago, he operated illegal gambling equipment in a neighboring state, and the locations that had his equipment requested some other coin op stuff. He was making money faster than he could count it, so he went to the local distributor and bought a few pins, some jukeboxes and video games.

    We talked for a bit, and he named the games, Funhouse, Addams Family, Simpsons and some sort of golf game. I was hoping for NGG, but it ended up being Teed Off. He finally closed down operations and moved his equipment into storage. Someone he knew saw one of my ads online that I bought pinball machines, and he offered me the lot for $2000 USD. I called up my Dad, as he had a truck and usually is up for a trip to pick up games. I also was a bit nervous just driving around with cash to an area I wasn't familiar with. So, we drove to the guy's house, the directions saying to turn off the paved road, etc. Real 'rough country'.

    So, I paid the man and loaded the first 2 games. I took the FH and TAF first, as I figured if he ripped me off, at least I had the 2 games I wanted to keep. Came back a couple days later for the other 2 games.

    The games were not as good a deal as I initially had thought. His 'shed' was actually a condemned house. A condemned house is a house that the health officials determine is not suitable for someone to live in - due to damage, infestation, etc.

    And the TAF was not in the shed, it was on his back porch!

    I quickly traded the Teed Off and Simpsons to a friend for a game I eventually sold for $1400 - so my investment in TAF and FH was $300 each effectively.

    All 4 games had evidence of some sort of critters living in them - the TAF a dead mouse, and mud dauber wasp nest inside it, both games had various nuts and other items squirrels had carried into them to eat off of etc.

    Surprisingly, while all the games had leaky batteries, none had escaped the battery holder, and all 4 games at least booted.

    This is a restoration that I did not do - it is a restoration my good friend Mac did for me. I am quite pleased with what I see in the pics, and will be picking it up as soon as he finishes my Funhouse as well.

    Pics of the TAF as it arrived

    Pics during and after restoration

    Not bad for a $300 TAF! Mac had to replace the bookcase motor and gearbox as something inside was broken, all of the posts and most of the playfield hardware - there were a lot of nicks and pitting after the rust was removed.

  • #2
    Thanks for the story and photos John!


    • #3
      John - Most impressive work.

      Do you polish the metal guides ? They look too "buffed" to be regrained. I usually regrain the metal guides with wet/Dry 320 grit, but i have noticed many restore jobs with the "Buffed" look.

      Where did you get that playfield rotisserie ????? I WANT ONE

      We are the largest supplier of Pinball Ramps in Australia.
      Distributors for CPR, Pinball Inc, Planetary Pinball, Starship-Fantasy, Ball Baron, Pincore, Cliffy Protectors, Superbands


      • #4
        Great story and pics. Thanks


        • #5
          Originally posted by Strangeways View Post
          John - Most impressive work.

          Do you polish the metal guides ? They look too "buffed" to be regrained. I usually regrain the metal guides with wet/Dry 320 grit, but i have noticed many restore jobs with the "Buffed" look.

          Where did you get that playfield rotisserie ????? I WANT ONE

          This one isn't my work as I mentioned, it's being done by a friend of mine along with my Funhouse. He does amazing work.

          I'm not 100% sure on all his techniques, just am amazed at the results. I will try to remember to ask when I pick the game up. I'm waiting on the Funhouse to be finished as it's about 7 hours one way to this guy's place. It takes an entire day to drive to his place, visit for a bit and drive home - last time I left at 8 AM and got home around 4:30 AM the next morning! And I didn't stay as long as I would have liked to!

          He custom designed the rotisserie and made it himself.


          • #6
            It had surely been exposed to the elements lol. Great restore to have it come up as nice as it has especially with all the corrosion. The playfield is in better nick than most going around that I've seen - definitely better than mine!
            Thanks for sharing...
            Man cannot live with just one pinball.


            • #7
              great story john. i wouldn't have been able to wait 2 days to go back for the other machines!
              it was dirty but i don't think the playfield has many miles on it, its come up a treat.


              • #8
                Love the story. The adventure of finding and restoring these machines is just as good as playing them.


                • #9
                  Very nice work and well done. Love the detailed pictures you put up. Also checked your other photos and projects. Nothing beats an equipped "Lab" for restos.

                  I had a TAF once and really enjoyed the shop process having done mine over, albeit not as bad as this one and not having to go to the extent you have. Iam in awe..

                  Just wondering, did you make extension cables to allow your playfield to be run away from the cabinet yourself or are they available for sale somewhere?? I thought about making some up, should be almost simple to do.

                  Also, when you shoppped, did you clean the coil sleeves only or did you replace?? I would have thought a few were worn. I noticed a tad bit of dirt in one of the photos.

                  Cliff Tucker


                  • #10
                    Hi Cliff

                    This restoration was actually done by my friend Mac as posted in the first post of this thread.

                    Although I do some restore work, I am a novice compared to Mac. I've learned quite a bit from him.

                    I don't know whether he replaced them all or cleaned them. I replace them all in my restorations.


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