I’m posting this here where this contribution does not really belong*, as somehow I cannot find the New Post button in spite of looking everywhere for it. I trust Mr Pennymachines will move it to its right place in due course.
I’ve been meaning to post this for some time but delayed as I only had poor photographs of one of the machines, the Clown Magic Ball. I still haven’t got a better one but will add one in the near future as the machine is here in Melbourne belonging to a friend of mine.
I am wondering if anybody can provide any information on two British machines that exist in Australia that I have never come across any other examples of.
The first is a wall bagatelle machine that is in the collection of an Australian collector who is probably the first person here in Oz to collect coin op machines. It is unlike any other bagatelle wall machine I have ever come across.
The other is the Clown Magic Ball, a large floor standing machine which uses a hairdryer type mechanism to direct a table tennis ball onto a fork which leads into a clown’s mouth. Originally the machine gave prizes to those who achieved a certain score in the time that the blower mechanism was active but this mechanism has not been functional during the machine’s time in Australia.
The British collector brought this machine to Australia when he emigrated here in the late '70s or early '80s, binging his collection of coin op machines with him. It was a large collection including a Hawtin’s Clutching Hand and many other desirable machines.
Some of these were included in an exhibition here in Melbourne by the Performing Arts Museum. Sometime later the owner moved to Sydney and operated an old time Penny Arcade at the resort town of Katoomba in the Blue Mountains area about a 100 kilometres from Sydney. This operated not very successfully for about a year with the owner still living in Sydney. He subsequently sold most of the machines in an auction in Sydney for which I provided information on the machines for the auction catalogue which had the Clown machine on its cover. One of the machines that the collector owned was a very rare Pleasure Island pinball which was a version of Rockola’s World Series, designed for markets where baseball was not a popular game. I persuaded the collector to retain this game on account of its rarity and value and when he emigrated to the US shortly after the auction he took it with him and some years later sold it to a collector who specialised in the Rockola pinball machines.
Has any reader here ever come across another example of these three machines?