Pinball machines are nowhere near a small gaming system compared to today’s standard. Compared to games consoles and mobile devices, pinball machines are quite substantial machines. So, it’s important to know the size and weight of a pinball machine before you buy one.
Pinball machines weigh around 250-300lbs, or 113-136kg on average. SS machines usually weigh around 225-275lbs, while EM machines can weigh around 300-350lbs. Dot-Matrix-Display (DMD) machines have an average weight of 300lbs.
Not every game is built the same, but all machines have a similar size and shape. Some may be a little wider or taller than others, but you can expect a similar range between all. So, figuring out how much a pinball machine weighs can depend on a few factors.
How Big Is A Pinball Machine?
Pinball machines have average dimensions of 29” wide (0.07366m) x 76” tall (1.9304m) x 56” deep (1.4224m) when setup. Thus, they’re quite big machines, which means you need to be sure you can fit one through your door before you buy one.
As there are thousands of machines out there it would be hard to say the exact measurements per machine. But it’s good to know when deciding if you have the space and what you can expect to be lifting. This is why we recommend you bring a tape measure with you when you’re going to look at a machine to buy.
But there are lots of different factors that affect the size and weight of any pinball machine. Knowing what these are will allow you to pick the right one.
Factors That Affect The Weight Of Pinball Machines
Type Of Machine
The type and age of the machine could affect its weight. When you look at older Solid-State (SS) machines, usually from around the 1980s-90s, the machines will be lighter than modern ones. Whereas some of the Electro-Magnetic (EM) Machines in the same era tend to be heavier than the average.
SS machines have adapted computer technology, meaning they need fewer parts. But EM machines, especially multiplayer ones, can have 2 reels and motors. These need more space in the cabinet and add a substantial amount of extra weight.
So, you may have to take this into account when you’re looking to purchase a machine. SS machines tend to weigh around 225-275lbs. EM machines can weigh around 300-350lbs, while Dot-Matrix-Display (DMD) machines have an average of 300lbs.
If you have looked at many pinball machines, you’ll notice that they tend to have the same characteristics to them. But some will have a wider body or will be taller due to the back glass or just their overall height. This can also affect how much a pinball machine weighs.
The backglass/Translite will usually always be the widest part of the machine. Because they are the widest parts, they can not only add weight but also cause a lot of frustration when moving the machine.
So, you must be aware when navigating through doorways and down stairs. As you really don’t want to damage these pieces, affecting the glass or hinges. Some machines have a backglass that comes off, others will fold down. This can make it easier to move the machine. Pin Wiki can give you an idea of sizes for specific titles and certain manufacturers from different eras.
Most likely if you have a wider playfield you will have a wider cabinet and machine altogether. Wider playfields will usually have more complex maps with extra ramps or plastic figures to hit. This also varies between machine types, but usually between specific titles.
For example, Bally’s early 1970s EM machines had a standard size of 20.25 (0.51435m) x 41” (1.0414m), while an early SS Atari wide body was 27” (0.6858m) x 45” (1.143m).
Aussie Pinball can give you an idea of some general sizes for specific games and their sizes of the playfield. But usually, the bigger the machine’s overall dimensions, the bigger the playfield area will be.
Getting A Pinball Machine Into Your House
When you see a machine in an arcade you don’t really take notice of how big the machine can be, as they’ll usually be in very open spaces with lots of people around. But finding a space for it in your own home can turn out to be more difficult, as just putting a machine in the corner of a cramped room will not look good or be very practical.
How Much Space Do You Have?
So, it’s a good idea to map out your chosen room and use a tape measure to figure out how much space you actually have to work with. If you buy a machine that’s bigger than you expected, you might be very disappointed to find it doesn’t fit where you want it.
Use the average sizes discussed earlier and use a piece of furniture or cardboard boxes to eye up how big the machine will look. This is a good way to get a rough feel for how much space you need, and what it will look like when it’s in place.
Size Of Doorways
You also need to think about the size of your doors, hallways and stairs if you plan on moving it through a house. The standard height of a door is around 79-81 inches, giving you more than enough space in that direction. But the width can vary greatly as doorways can be as skinny as 18 inches (very unlikely) and up to 36 inches wide.
You might also lose a bit of width when the door is fully open due to the way the hinges work. This alone can cause a major issue. You don’t want to buy a big machine and have no way to get it through your door! You’ll be out of luck if your machine is too wide or too deep with the backglass on it and your doorway is too skinny. This is why you should always measure things in advance.
You can get creative if it comes down to it by bringing it through a window, but you may have to take out your window, which isn’t going to be easy or cheap in most cases.
But even when you’ve decided on the way to get your pinball machine into your house, you have to be careful. Don’t break your back moving a pinball machine. The weight will require multiple people to lift. So, be prepared with an extra person or two before you go lifting a pinball machine.
Pinball machines can be quite heavy, averaging around 250-300lbs. They’re also quite big, being as wide as 29 inches. There are a lot of factors that will affect the size and weight of your pinball machine, including the type of machine, size of the playfield and the width of the backglass. So, it’s important to get measurements before you buy it, to make sure it’ll fit through your door!