My thing with slots

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Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:23 am
Location: South East England

My thing with slots

Post by pedroofn19 »

My Dad had a shop in Camden back in the early '70s, right where the market is now. It was called Bradburys. He sold Bandits, Allwins, Pinball machines, Cranes, and all kinds of slot machines, and fairground stuff. He had a mate who was a travelling showman, and used to get a lot of cheap stuff from him. When I say cheap, it's stuff we can only dream of these days, like Allwins for £5. If they were a bit damaged, they would throw them in a skip. I couldn't believe it when he said they would chuck them away if they needed any work doing.

I guess it was back then that my love for slot machines started. I used to love going to my Dad's shop as it was always full of good slot machines to play on, and it didn't cost me anything to play them. Me, my Brother and Dad spent hours and hours playing each other on a Ruffler and Walker Ice Hockey table that my dad had at home.

I spent a lot of my teenage years hanging around amusement arcades down on the South Coast, learning how machines payout; watching when they payout, and sometimes we did pretty well. But then I met a guy, everyone used to call him Jackpot, and he could really play the fruities well. I mean he won, nearly all of the time. There were only a few machines he would play, but back then they were the most popular machines around, and all the big amusement arcades had those machines in them. Jackpot had a bit of a drink problem, and he would drink all the cash he made, so me and another guy, who had a car, hatched a plan with Jackpot to travel to all the arcades near to where we lived. Now that all sounds like easy money, but as soon as the arcade staff realise you are legally taking cash out of their arcade they get nosey. So Jackpot would play the fruities while me and the other guy would try and keep the staff busy. Sometimes we were standing between Jackpot on the machine, and three or four arcade staff, trying to see what Jackpot was doing. We would usually get thrown out after about three hours, but by then we had made a nice bit of cash, and then on the the next arcade, and then on to the next seaside town. We ended up being barred from almost every amusement arcade within 40 miles of Hastings. Then it just seemed too far to travel. We made quite a bit of money, and had a real laugh doing it, and we creamed the arcade owners, legally.

Then I grew up, got a job, had a family, and all the other stuff, and slot machines went out of my live for years.
Now Ive recently started buying old slots as a hobby, I went to the Elephant House last November and bought a few things, and my love for slots continues.
One pic is my Dad's shop sign, and the other is his shop in Camden. It's the red shop on the right of the pic. It looks very different. Taken about '73-'74.

Topic copied, split & merged with Star Warehouse, Camden - Site Admin.
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