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badpenny
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How many cherries?

Postby badpenny » Thu Feb 20, 2020 10:34 pm

Every time I think I've got the hang of something another point of view turns up.

I don't know where I got the idea from, but somewhere along the line I formed the opinion that a single cherry pay out on a Mills started with the Hi-top range. I've had Castle Fronts pointed out to me as Fake/Repro/A lash up of different machines etc. because of a single cherry on the award card.

Over on Facecloth I put forward the above theory regarding a War Eagle and was told "Two cherries is usually before WWII and one cherry pay is after WWII." Now that partly supports it, but I can't find end of production runs, so were the likes of Castle Front/War Eagle and their like still produced after WWII and sported single cherry pay out?

Badpenny !PUZZLED!

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treefrog
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Re: How many cherries?

Postby treefrog » Thu Feb 20, 2020 10:55 pm

Hello BP,

You probably saw me debate another discussion on drill plates on same group.

From what little I know machines from forties like Black Cherrys onwards could have single or two cherry awards, so half tops in other words. Never seen this in machines like War Eagles and Roman Heads which are slightly earlier. I have genuine Black Cherrys with both versions.

Just edited, as looking at my Mills books this looks to be the case, so machines like Diamond Fronts, Golden Falls and Black Cherrys, but not Bursting Cherrys, Roman Heads etc. I did notice some late Extraordinarys seem to have a single cherry as well.
Last edited by treefrog on Fri Feb 21, 2020 12:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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badpenny
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Re: How many cherries?

Postby badpenny » Thu Feb 20, 2020 11:19 pm

Not straight forward eh?
But with so many (apparently) frauds around, it seems to be an important indicator.

BP :!?!:

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treefrog
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Re: How many cherries?

Postby treefrog » Thu Feb 20, 2020 11:29 pm

Trouble is you can change single cherry to two payout with not a massive challenge. For some reason I acquired about 10 bundles of 3 coin two cherry slide stacks I will never use, but allows one to partially complete this change.

Certainly the most copied machine, the War Eagle is an easy one to call out on this...

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Re: How many cherries?

Postby quadibloc » Fri Feb 21, 2020 2:32 pm

To get accurate information on questions like this, I looked at old issues of Billboard magazine, to see what slot machines were advertised at the time to operators.

In the November 1945 issue of Billboard, Mills' first post-war machine, the "Cherry Bell" is shown. Despite its name, the payouts painted on the front appear to be of the double-cherry type. (Perhaps there was a single-cherry payout, listed elsewhere than on the payout card, to call more attention to it.)

However, single-cherry Mills slots were also advertised - Diamond Front conversions. They paid on one cherry or two; but there were still no cherries on the third reel, instead the old cherry-cherry-lemon and cherry-cherry-bell still applied.

As for the Mills Hi-Top line, that came along later. The first Mills Hi-Top slot machine was the Jewel Bell, which arrived in 1947. In 1948, they came out with a Hi-Top version of the Melon Bell and the Bonus Bell, as well as the Black Gold machine.

By 1947, Buckley was also converting Mills machines to single-cherry payout.

Despite the Cherry Bell being advertised as Mills' first post-war machine, the "Bursting Cherry" style of machine was also advertised in 1938 issues of Billboard.

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Re: How many cherries?

Postby chris rideout » Tue Feb 25, 2020 12:04 pm

It also depends on what the currency is! The first Mills machines arrived in this country (officially) in 1961 and the machines would have had the usual payouts of jackpot (about 100), bells (18), plums (14), oranges (10), 2 cherries (5), 1 cherry (2). When the fairground operators got them up and running on UK currency, the awards were jackpot (12 or in some rare cases a 5 shilling gold award token), bells (10), plums (8), oranges (6), 2 cherries and a lemon or bell (4), 2 cherries and anything else (2).

Suffice to say, the payout percentage fell miserably to little more than half of what it had been in the USA. Remember the maximum cash payout was 12 pennies (a shilling) and that was deemed to be a suitable award regarding "AWP" (amusement with prizes) machines in those days. The maximum award was 5 shillings in goods only. Fast forward a decade and decimal coinage arrived. So did runaway inflation! Prices had doubled in 10 years and nearly doubled again in the early 1980s.

I can remember back to 1974 when the so-called jackpot of 25 pence bought a pint of lager and you had a penny change that went into the charity box!

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Re: How many cherries?

Postby badpenny » Tue Feb 25, 2020 2:57 pm

chris rideout wrote:
Tue Feb 25, 2020 12:04 pm
It also depends on what the currency is! The first Mills machines arrived in this country (officially) in 1961
I fail to see what difference the currency makes, so please explain I'd love to know what I'm overlooking.
The second sentence intrigues me as well, where did you read that please? My Uncle Gordon was operating sorry I meant "hacking them around" in the mid 50s. And I know the Fairground side of the family were robbing the General Public with Poinsettias in the late 40s.
So what set up was The Unofficial route?

BP :cool:

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Re: How many cherries?

Postby coppinpr » Tue Feb 25, 2020 5:15 pm

If you watch the 1935 tour of the Mills factory (in another post) you will see Extraordinarys being packed for shipment to the UK (most likley to Samsons).

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Re: How many cherries?

Postby treefrog » Tue Feb 25, 2020 5:33 pm

Yes I was intrigued by Chris’s comments and assume this ties back to gaming laws. I have no idea where machines were used prior to this, but guess a lot of underground clubs and venues were common. A lot of British coinage machines pre dating this period exist with full payouts and jackpots.

I would love to know the history of the darker side of machine operating in Britain and whether anything has been published on the same.

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Re: How many cherries?

Postby badpenny » Tue Feb 25, 2020 9:12 pm

It's reputed that Ronnie & Reggie were great supporters of free trade.
They objected so much to breweries etc. dictating whose slot machines were placed in pubs and clubs and then taking a cut that they started operating their own machines.
I was once told how a complete consignment of Aristocrat Clubmasters took a wrong turning on its way out of the gates of Southampton Docks.
For the next handful of years the word across The Smoke was that if you went in a boozer and saw a Clubmaster it wasn't a good idea to be disrespectful. The Firm either owned the gaff or were responsible for its ummm .... protection.
Of course it could just be a load of "hydraulics" as they say.

BP !SOFA!


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