This morning the folks from the Dutch Pinball Museum sent me a press release about a major expansion that they have underway. If you've never seen this place, you have to check it out (more information below).
Coincidentally, the folks from the Dutch Pinball Museum were recently over in Chicago for this year's Pinball Expo and had an opportunity to take a tour of the American Pinball factory, which they uploaded to YouTube today. I have embedded the absolutely fantastic video of the factory tour and pictures from it below for anyone who wants to check it out.
In the video American Pinball's David Fix starts off by talking about how American Pinball wanted to produce 300 Galactic Tank Forces by the end of the year, which at the time amounted to 25 GTF machines per week.
The video also contained a really cool behind-the-sceens look at the AIMTRON portion of the factory. AIMTRON is the parent company of American Pinball. I had never seen its board manufacturing facility before.
Other interesting things that I took away from the video include:
Fix stated that the American has not officially retired its old style cabinet, that it's up to the game's designer whether they want to use the old AP cab or the more conventional new one.
American Pinball uses the same cabinet manufacturer as Jersey Jack Pinball.
Fix showed Houdinis in production, stating that AP still has over 200 orders for the game.
AP has two production lines operating right now, producing Galactic Tank Force (Line 1) and Houdini (Line 2).
It would be very easy for the company to move things around and add two more production lines.
The playfield rotisseries that American Pinball uses at the factory have the ability to work on widebody games, while nothing specific was said about a potential future widebody game coming from AP there seemed to be an implication that one is coming. Specifically Fix said "Let's put it this way, I am not limited not to [make a widebody game]"
They showed off the 3D Signature Edition lenticular 108-layer translite for Galactic Tank Force.
Say what you want about American Pinball's theme choices for games or launches, but the Company's factory is a very impressive operation. I can't wait to see what game American Pinball has up next. I hope that they continue to make games for many years to come. Make sure to check out the pictures from the tour video below, there's some amazing stuff in there.
"PRESS RELEASE: Expansion of the Dutch Pinball Museum in Rotterdam
Pinball in Rotterdam just got bigger and better!
The Dutch Pinball Museum in Rotterdam has always been a popular place to play pinball. But since today there are even more reasons to visit Delfshaven.
In recent months, we have worked hard to prepare everything and on Friday evening, November 24, the new floors will be officially put into use in the presence of friends, relations and sponsors of the Dutch Pinball Museum.
The extra space created in the characteristic building in Delfshaven means there is even more room for the history and education about pinball. Of course, extra space has also been made for the more than 100 freely playable pinball machines. The floors are beautifully thematically decorated to immerse yourself even more in the game.
The music pinball machines on the new floor can be reached via the "Stairway to heaven". In this thematic room you can play pinball in a disco theme. The pinball machines here are from different periods. This way you can play the "Wizard" from 1975, but just as easily the latest "Foo Fighters" pinball machine that was made almost 50 years later. And under the watchful eye of pinball musical heroes such as Elvis Presley, Lady Gaga, Madonna, Michael Jackson and Beyoncé, you try to get the high score.
In the adjacent “Dinosaur room” room you can play various pinball machines between life-size dinosaurs and palm trees that fit perfectly within the jungle theme. Think of classics such as "Congo", "Jurassic Park", "Creature from the Black Lagoon", & "The Flintstones";. But the most highly rated pinball machine of the moment, "Godzilla", is also included in this list.
On a separate floor we take a big step back in time. Here the classic and still immensely popularelectromechanical pinball machines from before 1977 are beautifully displayed together. Here too, the perfectly maintained pinball machines can be played by visitors.
Gerard van de Sanden, founder and owner of the Dutch Pinball Museum says: “We have been working on this for a few years. Everyone knows that Corona really threw a spanner in the works. But together with a group of volunteers and enthusiastic people from the pinball world, we have created something beautiful. We are not ready yet, because we still have plans for the coming months, but the foundation for our expansion is now in place. More space has been created to stand between the pinball machines, provide information and show our beautiful collection of special historical pinball objects.
We are of course proud that our museum is seen as the number 1 attraction in Rotterdam and that visitors are unanimously very enthusiastic about their visit. This expansion is designed to offer our visitors an even better experience.”
Dick Krikke, chairman of the Dutch Pinball Museum Foundation, says: “The Dutch Pinball Museum clearly shows what playing a pinball machine meant for entire generations, and how we ensure that we maintain this unique experience for the future.
The museum now pays even more attention to the history of pinball, the development of design and education about the technical and historical aspects of pinball.”
About the Dutch Pinball Museum
The Dutch Pinball Museum is a leading museum about pinball in historic Delfshaven in Rotterdam. The museum is housed in the 19th century warehouse ‘De Dubbelde Palmboom’ and has an impressive collection of pinball machines. Pinball machines from the beginning of the game to the latest new pinball machines, straight from the factory. In addition, the museum has a great and unique collection of special historical objects related to pinball culture. The museum is open to the public on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays and on request for groups of visitors. Entrance from €15 per person and we advise you to reserve your place in advance due to the limited number of visitors we allow in at the same time."
Pictures from the American Pinball Factory Tour:
Pictures of the Dutch Pinball Museum: