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Gottlieb Big Shot

Here is a classic case where being a nice guy with selfish motives did not pay off.

I have a friend who lives 2 hours away who had this Big Shot with a perfect center plastic.  I have been on a mission to find an unbroken center plastic to my Big Shot for almost 12 years.  My friend would not give me his even though he couldn't get the game working. I had been working on him for several years. One spring, he called and said I could have the game - free. All I had to do was go get it. I was very busy and it took me 3 months to get a weekend set up. When I finally had a free weekend, he told me that he changed his mind. It was in his airplane hanger and even though it only worked about 50%, the guys liked to play it so I couldn't have it any more. I was totally pissed off.  All I really wanted was that damn center plastic for my own Big Shot.

Around the end of October, I found a Night Rider with a trashed playfield and had the idea that I could get it cheap, fix it, and trade it for the Big Shot. It all worked out and I even had a buyer for the Big Shot once I got the plastic. I bought the Night Rider, spent 2 weeks fixing it up, and drove with my wife to get the Big Shot. We unloaded the Night Rider, set it up, and started to check out the Big Shot. I was hoping the problems would be minor because the buyer was on my way home. I planned to fix it real quick and drop it off - after taking the middle plastic.

My friend was anxious to show me the problems so he took off the glass and before I could remind him to flip the ball into the shooter lane, he lifted the playfield. Well, it was only about 40 degrees in the hanger so the plastics were kind of brittle. I'm sure you can guess what got smashed when he lifted up the playfield. I have never been so pissed off about anything pinball related in my life. I wanted to kick the shit out of him. But I had to be nice since we are good friends with him and his wife.

All the way home, I was steaming mad and my wife thought I deserved it because anyone who would go to that much trouble for that little piece of plastic must be a complete idiot. The Big Shot turned out to need a ton of work too so I ended up fixing up 2 games, driving 300 miles, and I didn't make a dime -  when all I really wanted was the plastic which I never got.

2 people were very happy.  The guy who got the Night Rider, and the guy who got the Big Shot.

2 weeks after this ended, I found that center plastic on Ebay and bought it for only $20.  I guess the Pinball Gods decided I had endured enough punishment looking for that plastic part.


Completed work:  I had to do a few hacks on this game.  Check out this link to see them:  Bozo Hacks the Big Shot
  • Clean/gap all contacts - playfield, main board, backbox.
  • Fixed bonus unit.  Missing coil stop replaced.  Cleaned off all the oily gunk.  Adjusted mechanism so it works.
  • Made a knocker out of spare parts.  Works great.
  • Rebuilt one drop target bank mechanism.   Had to fabricate/repair 2 parts, new coil stop, replace missing screws.
  • Fixed broken playfield plastic (missing part found under main board)
  • Fixed anti-cheat wire on coin door - disabled.
  • Rebuilt/adjusted credit unit.  Set for free play.
  • Installed wire ties to re-bundle loose wiring.
  • Made a new score & instruction card.
  • Adjusted free games to match score card and also give a fee game at 99,000 (bonus surprise setting)
  • Put game on high tap for extra power
  • Adjust all contacts behind rubbers (if new rubbers are installed, double check contact gap.
  • All burnt out bulbs replaced.  Flashers installed behind game over light and "BIG SHOT" name.
  • Fixed "special" contacts on the right drop target bank.
  • Fix the pop bumper cap - Dave did a great job with a sharpie.

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