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The Silver Skates Project


The Purchase

I recently acquired a Williams 1953 Silver Skates in terrible condition. When I went to see the game after being called about it, I was disappointed to see that the head was lying on the floor, upside down, with all of the wires going to the body cut off! The bottom wood plate of the head (the part that actually lays against the body and gets bolted to it) was split off.

The playfield didn't look too bad although it was kind of dark and dirty. All rubbers had disintegrated. There were no keys for the locks, nor any playfield glass. At least it had 4 legs (but only 1 leg bolt). One of the inner metal pieces were the leg bolts screwed into was off.

And to top it off, the backglass was very bad. A lot of the powder blue ice surface paint was simply missing. Quite a few more spots had been touched up with dark blue paint. The top half of the glass actually looked ok, and at least the main elements of the glass that get lit up directly (the sexy female George Molentin based hockey players) looked good too.

Other problems included a few other cut wires in the body and head (just snipped off), and an obvious shorting problem, as one of the fuse holders had cigarette foil over it. The cabinet paint looked pretty scruffy on one side also.

After deliberating about whether to touch this game or not, I made a rock bottom offer and took the game home. It didn't weigh much thankfully and was about the easiest pin I've ever moved!

The Restoration Begins

I am not a professional game restorer. I have little artistic talent and I'm no genius with my hands as my father was. But I have worked on several old games and have a small but useful set of tools and spare parts. Hence I at least have some confidence when attacking a project like this.

What I will do here is keep a "diary" detailing the steps taken to get this game operational once more. I have no aspirations of making this game as good as new or a show winner. It looks like a cool game to play, so I only hope to make it look reasonable and play well.

Stay tuned as I update the work done.

Silver Skates Restoration Diary

Last updated: May 13, 2005

© Terry Cumming, 2000-2005