NEW IN CRATE Watling Slot Machine

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NEW IN CRATE Watling Slot Machine

Postby shortrackskater » Sat Apr 28, 2018 4:22 pm

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Watlin ... SwVF1aTY9t

Here is the listing description so this topic will still be interesting when the auction ends. It's long but interesting to read.
Watling Slot Machine in original, unopened crate!

If you are a slot machine collector you must know that this is likely your one and only chance to purchase a slot machine in its original unopened crate. A "once in a blue moon” “life-time" opportunity for a Watling machine with the highly collectable 25 cent play!

For serious collectors looking for true “MINT condition”, this machine truly redefines these words. If this doesn't get your collectable juices moving, nothing will!

Initial Description:

First off, the featured slot machine photo in the description is NOT the one for sale. As stated on the photo it is a "stock photo only" of what I believe is likely very similar to the one IN the crate or more likely an exact duplicate.

The Crate has never been opened by me (or anyone else according to the original seller) so I cannot be 100 percent certain of all the details, model number, etc. I am NOT a Watling specialist. I can certify, however, that it IS a crated and unused Watling Slot Machine (that is very obvious) but I cannot say for certain that it is a 25 cent Castle Front. Although that is what I was told I purchased and all indications point that out. I will leave it up to you, the bidder, to decide the details. More information on this and the photos below.

Background:

I am a small private collector of coin operated machines, including slots, juke boxes, popcorn machines, etc. I like things clean and original. I purchased the slot machine at a Long Beach Coin Operated Machine sales convention over 15 years ago. It has been covered in my closet or garage all this time. I bought it from an established and well known collector who specialized in Watling Slots and was selling off his collection. At the time, many at the show wanted me to uncrate the machine but I thought it would be more valuable and more interesting to not uncrate it. I bought it from the seller as a 25 cent Castle Front Watling Rol-A-Top Slot Machine. It is sometimes referred to as "Checkerboard" (The slot machine casting and colors resemble both a castle and a checkerboard.) There are two original small round stickers on the top of the crate (in hand printing). One sticker says “25 * Rol-A-Top” the other sticker says "castle front".

According to the International Arcade Museum the Checkerboard or Castle machine was manufactured in 1947. Another site says 1947 -1949. That makes this machine 70 years old or close to it.

The Slot Machines:

Watling Rol-A-Top slot machines are known as the King of Slot Machines for any collector and most agree that the Watling Rol-A-Top is one of the most attractive three wheel slots ever manufactured. They are solid, durable commercial machines that have been played in businesses or casinos for years and years. They are sold in “original” used and slightly abused but mainly untampered condition. Many have broken parts that have been re-machined, modified, etc. but not too much. They are sought after by true collectors. Some used and barely working Watling machines have sold for well over $7,000 while some have been sold in dubious“restored” condition for $12,000 or far more on Ebay and other auctions.

This machine has never been restored, refurbished, repainted, plated, or “tampered with”. Nor has it ever been taken apart and put back together by some “expert” to LOOK new. For all intents and purposes this machine IS NEW! Except for a layer of fine dust perhaps that penetrated the crate over the decades. It has never seen the light of day!

The photos:

The crate itself is in excellent condition and has a value by itself. There is a slight crack in one of the slats shown in one photo of the crate but it is in great condition.

I decided not to uncrate the slot but used a remote endoscope camera to view and take photos of the machine. In the process, I needed to make several small cuts (about the size of a quarter) in the brown Kraft-type paper bag material that appears to seal and enclose the slot like a bag. Material was brittle and cracked mostly at the edges of the cuts. I was able to thread the remote semi-rigid cable and camera into the opening for some very close and tight shots in some areas. I did not want to disturb the integrity of the crate or contents so I limited the shots. (I have a few more available)

The images posted from the endoscope camera are obvious and comparisons can be made with the “stock photo” image. By careful observation, the tiny close-in snapshots seem to correspond with areas on the stock slot machine photo.

What I observed and surmised:

1 Slot machine appears to be similar or exactly like the stock photo. A “castle” front. Yellow/gold in color.
2 A find layer of dust covers the machine. The dust is a very light layer in most areas and slightly heavier in others. The dust appears to be very superficial and does not appear to be adhered to the surface of the machine. (areas where the endoscope was dragged across the surfaces, disrupted or cleared the dust quite easily) Also noticed a small cobweb and dead spider egg on inside of crate and outside of paper packing.There appears also to be some heavier packing material material (not unlike styrofoam) for packing support. I believe this packing material also acted like a barrier to prevent my endoscope from moving freely around the contents of the crate and the slot surface - limiting my photos.
3 The slot appears to be a 25 cent machine as noticed in one photo (not shown in the listing).
4 Slot also appears to be a “Twin Jackpot” version like the stock photo. Jackpot # 1 and #2
5. The colors are similar but not exactly like the stock photo version. But remember the colors of the stock photo slot are photos of a repainted slot and not authentic. Plus there is dust on surfaces of the crated slot.
6 The slot appears to be in remarkable original condition (as expected) and obviously can be left in the crate as-is. Or it can be uncrated, dusted off and shown to the world as likely the best example of what a true Watling “survivor” looks like - in all its original glory!! (Recommend video taping the process if you decide to uncrate it)
7 Original reel strips are plainly visable.

Assumed:

I “assume” the slot machines comes crated and packaged with original keys, instruction booklets, change box, etc and all that an operator would need to get get it up and working properly (collecting $) But not sure what is enclosed.

I honestly do not know the ultimate true value of this slot machine. Perhaps this auction will tell. I've been around some nice collections and this is the best of the best. The cherriest of them all. I also know that it is a survivor - a one-off slot machine that likely has no comparison. This likely will be your best last chance to buy such a rare find. Some lucky collector could be the first to open this mummified treasure – like a bottle of fine rare wine.

Good luck bidding. Sorry for such a long listing description but I felt it was necessary for such a unique item. I think it was important to know the acquisition history and my understanding of what I am selling without actually showing it! I could have written this much shorter had I uncrated the machine and knew more details and could show more, but then it would not be “in-the-crate”. Another reason for the long description is to for me to make the most detailed and honest disclosure as possible since this slot machine is being sold in “AS IS” condition with NO REFUNDS and NO RETURNS and with NO warranties or exchanges. Please study the photos and feel free to message me with any questions. Bidders with less than 10 feedback will need to contact me before bidding. No bids accepted for bidders with zero feedback score. Sorry.
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Re: NEW IN CRATE Watling Slot Machine

Postby oldslotman » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:52 pm

Looking at the Watling emblem on the front I would say it is possible that one or more of the boards have been removed at one time since everything does not line up . Bottom board looks to be over about 1/2 inch or more. The Watling emblem was most likely painted on after the crate was built so everything should line up. JMHO
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Re: NEW IN CRATE Watling Slot Machine

Postby Dave » Sat Apr 28, 2018 7:14 pm

I bought a RAT from a private party that had the original shipping crate.

The machine I bought had a paper bag around it (with Watling logo) when it was in the crate.
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Re: NEW IN CRATE Watling Slot Machine

Postby randyvw » Sat Apr 28, 2018 10:44 pm

this is odd....i remember hearing this story many years ago. sumthin' just don't seem right here???? i'm not sure...........
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Re: NEW IN CRATE Watling Slot Machine

Postby Dave » Sun Apr 29, 2018 8:43 am

I have seen this listing on eBay before.
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Re: NEW IN CRATE Watling Slot Machine

Postby oldslotman » Sun Apr 29, 2018 12:41 pm

Buyer beware!!!
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Re: NEW IN CRATE Watling Slot Machine

Postby randyvw » Sun Apr 29, 2018 6:49 pm

ok, i got the straight skippy on this machine from a friend of stan wilker, who owned it before this guy. it was bought at the fun fare in long beach around 1997....these dates are all roughly speakin'. there were 24 machines found back around 1990, or so. they we found by a collector that got the 50cent machine for the finders fee. they were bought from the widow of the origonal owner. i'm pressed for time right now, but wanted to start this story so you know it's real....if there's no "paper bag" in there, it's probly been removed from the crate and put back in. but it IS a real brand new machine that was one of 24 found....continued tonight when i get time...BTW, they started around 5 grand and the last one sold for around 7 grand.....at least it's LIKELY real....there is a possibility the guy's a scammer, but knowing the story, it's probly legit.
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Re: NEW IN CRATE Watling Slot Machine

Postby randyvw » Sun Apr 29, 2018 7:20 pm

the original find is what started the partnership between roy arrington and a big collector in vegas. the operator had put the 24 machines away when the laws changed...i believe it was in albuquerke, and just never got to use them. many years later his widow offered them for sale, so roy got cash from the collector, and bought them....arrington was selling these 3 at a time, for your choice, and the people often took the quarter one and left the nickel, dimes to resell later...sometimes they would say "oops, we found another 3 machines" at the same auction, and it would start over again, and someone else would own one, two, or three of these "rarest of the rare" machines. oddly enough, the first ones sold for LESS than the last ones to sell...i suppose because all of the last ones to sell were dimes or nickels. a lil side note here is that there was one auction where no slot machines were sold, because of the dissolution of the partnership between roy and his partner that bought all those new in the box rolatops....he was using the partners liscence to sell them, and he was walking away....i'm sure a lot of you will remember that time. anyways, stan may or may not have taken the machine out of the crate, but my friend DOES remember stan taking off one board on front to see sumthin' or other inside....anyways, there are 24 of these machines out there, and ONE of them is a 50cent.
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Re: NEW IN CRATE Watling Slot Machine

Postby randyvw » Sun Apr 29, 2018 7:26 pm

one more thing to say. i thank the collector friend of mine that told me this story, and i am passing it on to y'all because i think it's a VERY interesting story. there was a LOT more to the story told to me, but i hope i got most of the important stuff out here. thank you to ALL of you "storytellers" who make this hobby so much more interesting. and remember, we LOVE to hear your stories, so PLEASE keep telling us about the old times!
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