Western Mysterious Eye

Graphics, flyers, instructions and other materials.
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Madrad
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Western Mysterious Eye

Post by Madrad »

See a video of the Western Mysterious Eye in action at my blog:

http://davecory2.blogspot.com/2008/05/w ... s-eye.html
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badpenny
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Re: Western Mysterious Eye

Post by badpenny »

Dave ... that's a belter! Thanks for posting it. What a superb job he did in the restoration ...... I want one!!!!! :***
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pennymachines
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Re: Western Mysterious Eye

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The flyer.
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quadibloc
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Re: Western Mysterious Eye

Post by quadibloc »

I just recently saw the video referenced in this thread by finding it through a YouTube search.

I had heard of the Mysterious Eye through reading Dick Bueschel's "Lemons, Cherries, and Bell-Fruit Gum" - although I'd seen a Billboard ad for it in previous searches, I took no notice of it. But now I have learned that it was, according to Automatic Age, "setting sales records" in 1935 - so apparently its success was responsible for the very existence of the Bally Reliance, Buckley Bones, and Mills Dice.

That makes it a very historically important machine.
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pennymachines
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Re: Western Mysterious Eye

Post by pennymachines »

quadibloc wrote: Wed Feb 26, 2020 3:02 am so apparently its success was responsible for the very existence of the Bally Reliance, Buckley Bones, and Mills Dice.
Actually it was the other way around. Western Equipment and Supply Company produced the Mysterious Eye because they knew Mills Novelty Company were working on a revolutionary new dice game which was expected to take the industry by storm. Word got out about this when Mills filed US patent 2007259 in April 1932, which revealed Blanchard D Smith's ingenious method of forcing the dice.

Mills then spent four years developing a more elaborate machine than was originally envisaged, by which time both James E Johnson of Western Supply and Pat Buckley of the Buckley Manufacturing Company had designed rival machines.

To Johnson's credit, although clearly inspired by Smith's idea, he didn't copy it, but came up with a different solution (US patent 2135182, 1938). Instead of forcing the dice, Mysterious Eye actually 'reads' them. First advertised in July 1935, it certainly stole a march on Mills, who rushed their machine to completion for the January 1936 trade show. Perhaps Mysterious Eye sold well at first, when its novelty and low price were attractions, but in the long term it doesn't appear to have been a commercial success.

I recently wrote a piece on these fascinating auto dice games for the Arena: Spot Luck & other Automatic Dice Games
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