Pinball Repair Service in Your Home -
Southeast Michigan, Mid Michigan, Toledo Ohio.
I get a lot of email asking, "Will you come to my home and fix my pinball or coin-operated arcade game?" The answer is YES! And the price is less than you may think.
I Buy Pinball Machines!
In-Home Pinball Repair Service.
I specialize in pinball games from the 1940s to present. That means I can fix an old EM (electro-mechanical) pinball, or the most current solidstate pinball games. I also fix old shuffle alley/puck bowling and ball bowlers, arcade baseball pitch and bat games, arcade mechanical gun games, and other similar arcade games. This includes coin operated games made by Gottlieb, Williams, Bally, DataEast, Midway, Sega, Stern, Chicago Coin (CCM), Genco, Mutoscope, United and many others. Newer Solidstate dot matrix display games to the oldest electro-mechanical pinballs.
I bring all tools and parts for your game with me (I would say less than 5% of the time I have to make a second trip back because I am missing a part). And if I can't fix your game there's no charge (assuming you're not an hour's drive away.)
As part of the service I also clean the playing surface and the rubber bumpers (and replace them if they need it or you want it.) This only take a few minutes, and it's easy to do. I will show you how you can do this in the future too. Because keeping the playing surface clean is the best way to keep your game playing great, lasting longer, and of course looking good.
Note I am animal friendly! That is, if you have a dog or cat or two at your home, that is not a problem. I can fix your pinball game at your home with no worry about pets.
Generally a 75 mile trip (each way) is about as far as I can travel to do a game repair (like 1.5 hours each way). I have traveled up to three hours each way to fix someone's games - I don't like doing it, but sometimes (depending on the current schedule) I'll make the drive. Also travel is more limited during November to March, because the winter Michigan weather is unpredictable. So if you are far away and need a game fixed for Christmas, please let me know if possible by November so I can make the trip before the winter weather comes. Keep in mind that long distance repairs can present problems for warranty work, hence my hessitation to accept really long drives. Because if you have a problem after the repair, it is very difficult for me to support the repair due to long travel distances. Please keep that in mind.
Sometimes do slot machines repair too (email for more details.) I don't do this a lot, and generally won't come out for just a slot repair unless you have a pinball machine that needs some love too. Same applies to Chexx and Super Chexx Hockey games (domed bubble hockey) from 1983 (when introduced) to present. Note I generally do NOT fix video games.
Pinball Repair Cost and Credentials.
I've been repairing pinball games since the early 1990s. In that time I've written and documented more on pinball repair than probably anyone else on the planet. From the pinball repair guides at PinRepair.com, to seminars at all the major pinball shows across the country, to writing and editing for pinball magazines, to the subscription pinball repair site PinballNinja.com (with over 800 game repairs documented including over 300 with HD video), to DVDs on pinball repair (pinrepair.com/TOP), well you get the idea. I am also inducted into the Chicago Pinball Expo Hall of Fame in 2010, and received a pinball lifetime achievement award from the Pacific Pinball Museum in 2011.
Other stuff I'm involved with includes the Ann Arbor Pinball Museum. I own and maintain the 250 pinball games at that facility. So chances are good I actually own the same game title as you are asking me to repair, and that I've had extensive experience fixing that exact pinball title. Here's an article about the museum from a local news outlet. I also teach at class at the museum on pinball repair.
As for cost, I can also say this with comfidence... I will repair your pinball correctly, and I'll do it for less than anyone else in the area. How can I say that? Since I have many years of experience, I'm pretty quick at doing repairs, and my hourly rate is less than anyone else I know doing home repairs in Michigan. In addition, pinball repair is all I do. That is, it's a hobby spun out of control, and that has taken over my life (to the dismay of my wife!) I wake up at about 5:30am and I'm either fixing games or documenting repairs, and I do this pretty much all day until bed at 11pm. Yea I know, it's sick. But hey that's what I do. (When you own 250+ games, there's always something to fix!) Check out the video of me doing what I do at the bottom of this page.
New Policy on Payment.
So the new policy starting January 1, 2014 is this: I please request Cash. Please no checks, and no promises of sending a check. Payment is expected at the time of the repair. Paypal can work, but please tell me ahead if that is your plan.
Check exceptions - if you bank with Dearborn Federal, Chase, or Charter1 (those are my banks too), then a check is OK.
I schedule about one week in advance. So that gives everyone plenty of time to get their funds in order. Most repairs are in the $50 to $300 range, so please have that amount of cash available on the day of the repair.
Thank you in advance for this. And again, I apologize for any inconvenience this causes.
Contact Info for In-Home Pinball Service.
Feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org as email is the BEST WAY to schedule a repair. You can call but frankly it's difficult for me to answer phone calls during the day because I'm working. Email is better since I can do this in the evening and at odd hours. Please have the make/name of your game handy when you call or email! My number is 248-390-5382.
I ask that you only contact me if you are in the Michigan/NW Ohio area. That is, I really can't help fix your game if you live in California. (Well unless you want to fly me to your location!)
I write and maintain the pinball and arcade game information and repair web pages at Pinrepair.com if you want to check that out before contacting me. Also I have a list of repair credentials at the top right of this web page.
In addition, if you have a broken game you want to get rid of, I do sometimes buy games. This includes pinball machines, gun games, bowling games, and Chexx hockey games. But frankly I would rather fix these games in your home if at all possible.
I usually book one week in advance. Feel free to email with questions. Holidays get booked quickly, so please plan in advance and email well before your big holiday party. The holdiday seasons of Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, and then the Super Bowl are super busy. Hence during the months of November and December things can get congested. During these months I'm usually booked two or three weeks in advance.
Bring the Game to Me.
Arcade Video Game Service.
Games for Sale.
I get asked a lot, "do you sell games?" The short answer is generally no. But sometimes (when I run out of space!) I get forced into "pinball space-closure", and must sell a game or two. This doesn't happen often, as I am a pinball fanatic, and just hate selling games! Also since I run the Ann Arbor Pinball Museum, we're always looking for games to exhibit there. If I have anything for sale, I put it on the website pinrepair.com/gamesale
Commonly Asked In-Home Pinball Repair Questions:
Q) When do you usually schedule repairs?
Q) How much does it cost to fix a game at my house?
Q) How much do you charge per hour?
Q) What forms of payment do you accept?
Q) Will my pinball repair require multiple trips? What Lead time is needed
for an appointment?
Q) Would it be cheaper for me to bring my game to you for repair?
Q) How can I prepare for you coming to fix my pinball?
Q) Will you fix my game in my garage?
Q) A local repair shop is asking me to remove a board or to bring the
entire game to them. Wouldn't that be cheaper?
Q) A local shop is willing to fix my pinball, but I have to bring it
to them. Won't this be cheaper?
Q) How much are parts?
Q) Will you clean my game too?
Q) Do you warranty your work?
That all said, there is one more point I would like to add in regards to my warranty. If the game breaks again shortly after I repair it, you should email/call ASAP. I can't read minds, so if the game breaks again, please email! I *will* take care of issues quickly assuming you're not really far away. But I can't do that if you don't tell me about the problem.
Q) I have lost the key to my game. Do you have a "master key"?
Q) Can I watch when you fix my machine at my home?
Q) Are there any spray lubricants or contact cleaners I should use on my game?
Q) Do you have any references?
Q) Do you have any pinball games?
Q) I have several old broken pinballs from the 1960s and 1970s that have been
stored in our barn for 10+ years. Can you fix these?
Q) I have a 1963 Chicago Coin ball bowler.
It has not worked for more than 10 years, and we can not find anyone
to fix it. I am located in Farmington Hills, can you repair it?
Do you carry the parts?
More Reasons I'm Your Guy for Pinball Repair.
When coming out for a repair, I always come prepared. Most people don't have factory documentation/schematics for their games. No problem! I have over 700 manuals/schematics for nearly all the games anyone could possibly ask me to repair. Why is this important? Because when you have schematics, fixing a machine is a lot quicker (which saves you money!) Sure I can usually fix nearly anything without a schematic, but it just takes extra time. To avoid this, I've spent thousands of dollars on schematics for over 700 game titles. When I come to your place, of course I bring the paper work with me, so your repair is done as quickly as possible.
Free Light Bulbs!
Parts? We've got Parts!
Test Fixtures and Repair Equipment.
Boards? We got Boards!
Anyway, I hope this web page has given you some confidence that I'm your repair guy for pinball. Please feel free to call or email with any other questions.
Detroit Free Press video of yours truly: