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Collectibles-General (Antiques)/1948 Mills Hightop Slot machine


I drilled out the metal plate lock on the coin drawer. I was able to drill the 4 screws out and the lock is untouched, but without a key it is probably worthless.
All that is left for me besides a cleaning/lubricating is the jackpot assembly.
I am attaching 2 pictures, as you said you could tell me about what type of jackpot it is.
I removed the mounting bolt, and believe there are 2 screws at the bottom of the jackpot that need to come out, but would need to remove the base first to reach them?
All I know about the jackpot is there was one nickel in when I got the machine and still is just one.
I put in probably500 nickels
It appears the jackpot mechanism may have been disconnected, as I noticed 2 unhooked springs.
P.S. I am worried I might enjoy tinkering with this more than useing it! LOL
Thanks again for your time

ANSWER: Hi Steve,
Man, you really need this mills book I have, shows photos of each and every part and what that part does and how it works, how to tear down the complete machine and put it all back together again, too bad Humpty Dumpty didn't have one...LOL. It also shows you adjustments and where to lube it I believe. I can't believe you are doing all this without some kind of guidance, but maybe you do have something to help you. Write me if interested at or if interested. You jackpot from what I can see, looks complete and it also has the reserve jackpot assembly so that is cool. As for as you lock, you saved it and that is very good, yes your lock can be saved and keyed to an original Mills key so you did really good here as these original mills locks and key has climbed up to 75.00 each and going higher all the time. We can also help with this if you like, and even get you a replacement cash box door if wanted. There are two ways to remove those jackpot bottom two screws, one is using a very long straight edge screw driver to get at them, and the other is removing the top casting and then the lower casting complete with jackpot unit. This method sounds like a big job but it really isn't, and I prefer doing it this way as you can't always get to those bottom screws and if you do, they are really hard to get back in.
Thank You
Rodger Knutson

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

One last question...
The spring on the front of the jackpot was disconnected, so I connected it, no problem.
There was also one spring on the rear of the mechanism that was disconnected, so I reconnected the spring. This piece I believe is called the fan stop blade ( looks almost like a wrench from the rear).
With the spring attached the fan stop blade lever lifts up and blocks the clock fan from turning. I am afraid to spin the machine, I don't want to break the fan.
I circled the 2 ends of the piece, showing blocking the fan and the spring attached at bottom.
I will also be emailing you about re-locking the key.

Yes Steve,

I know what this is, you see these fan stop levers disconnected almost always or removed completely and that is why your spring was off or missing. This device stops the clock fan when the mechanism is out of the case so the mechanism can't be played out of the case. Quote from the Mills book: Clock Fan Control: It is the function of the fan stop lever assembly to inhibit the motion of the clock fan while the jackpot door is open. This prevents tampering with the jackpot door and receiving the reserve jackpot on subsequent plays. When the mechanism is installed in the case, the closed jackpot presses back on the fan stop lever, releasing it from the clock fan.

So, what you have here is one of the many anti cheat items installed in a Mills slot machine. This one item is removed or disabled on collector's machines because with the mechanism out of the case, you can no longer play or kick off the mechanism while servicing it. So these are normally disconnected as no one is trying to cheat an antique slot machine anymore.

Hope this clears that problem up for you.

Thank You
Rodger Knutson

Collectibles-General (Antiques)

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Rodger Knutson


I am an expert on old coin operated machines, slot machines, trade stimulator's, jukeboxes, old arcade machines, etc. I have been identifying these for people who respond to my web site listed below, for a few years now. In almost all cases I am able to tell them about their old coin operated machines, the year, the value, and other general information about their machines. I do not know much about soda vending machines, coin banks, or scales, but I will try to help you with these if I can. Please email photo's to: My web site is at:


I bought my first slot machine, a .50 Cent Mills Black Cherry in 1969 and have been hooked from that time, I still have that Slot machine! Before that I found a open barrel full of old scraped jukebox wall boxes behind a restaurant, I wanted them all but never took a one of them. Anything that took a coin drove me nuts!

C.O.C.A. and other slot and coin operated machine groups, associations, groups, and clubs.

Many, the Coinslot magazine, always juken, Coin Slot Journal, Slot Box Collector, and others that I don’t remember at this time.

Graduated from Ballard High School in 1969, went to Edison Technical Collage for a couple of years taking welding and metal fabrication, tig, mig, heliarc, also arc and gas welding and fabrication. Then Apprenticed under a slot machine technician who worked in the slot machine industry Reno Nevada, and set up bar poker progressive machines in the casino's, and repaired machine and did the repairs on slot machine circuit boards there. He also was involved in the 2 hand dealer's market and bought and sold machines at the casinos auctions for the secondary market, which includes selling used machine overseas. I learned a ton from this man; he always had the correct answers and took the time to teach me the business. My interest and knowledge in other and older coin operated machine is for the most part, self-taught. It's been my passion from back in 1968 and before, my thirst for knowledge about these machines has kept me more interested over the years, and keeps me searching for more information even today. I have meet and talked to book authors on these machines, attended hundreds of coin operated shows and auctions, and I stay with that to this very day.

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Take a look at my allexperts rating, and my guest book, links to these are at Also you can check my 100 percent rating on ebay, as I have been there with ebay from their day one, I am user coinslots at ebay. My other awards come from the very people that I deal with, I always make them happy, no matter what it takes, but they always are happy anyway as the countless thank you letters testify to me, so I know I am doing right, and the best I can. I have found so many hard to find parts for people, I hunt them down and don't stop until I find what is needed to get that customers machine running again and back to life, that is my main goal.

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Client privacy prevents this answer, as some are VIP and famous and I will not betray the trust.

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