The Internet Pinball Serial Number Database or IPSND collects serial numbers of pinball machines and publishes a database of these on the Internet. Our goal is to make available a registration of all pinball machines in existence and allow tools for slicing, dicing and visualization of the data.

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Locating Serial Numbers on a Pinball Machine:

Finding serial numbers on a game can sometimes be quite challenging. They are commonly hidden, painted over, destroyed or just in non-obvious places. The main difficulty is that manufacturers put their serial numbers in a variety of places in and out of the game and then they often changed the location of the serial number as time went on. Several manufacturers used a consistent numbering system for many years and others changed their formats often. In addition, there are frequently numbers on a game that might not be the serial number at all, it could be a part number, an inspector number or something that has no connection to the actual serial number at all.

This page is a reference on how to locate serial numbers for all manufacturers in the database. The nice part is that you can add your own tips and suggestions for other people to read as well. I have added initial comments on the information that I have from Bill Ung out of the original Internet Pinball Project (now defunct). Feel free to submit new information on serial number locations specific to each manufacturer and appropriate time period.

(Please do not post serial numbers here, please use the Search Page, to find your specific game)
Posted 1/11/2007 11:52:51 PM by Bill Ung

Older Williams games are very much like older Gottlieb games. The serial numbers are stamped/etched into the wood on the front of the cabinet. This holds true for anything prior to say, oh, 1984/1985, or around System 9. Occasionally you have to look hard for it, like the Joust game at PAPA 5. I did find it eventually, serial number for that game was: 624985. Williams games from the late 60's up to the mid 80's were 6 digit numbers.

Posted 6/9/2007 8:07:09 PM by Jess Askey
Also, for Joust and Rat Race games... the serial for the tabletop style cabinet is on the 1st player side in the bottom left . It is a 6-digit number stamped into the wood.
Posted 6/19/2007 12:37:14 PM by Jess Askey
Williams also seemed to staple small rectangular paper labels inside the cabinet were the backbox attaches that has the serial number nicely printed in clearly legible text. You have to take the backbox off to see this area generally but it is an easy way to read a serial number if the stamp is mangled. There is also a stamp in this same location generally. I have a hyperball cabinet that has a clearly stamped serial number on the front of the cabinet and inside the top area that doesn't match the printed label however, so it seems they must not have paid close attention to the paper and stamps serials matching all the time.
Posted 6/25/2007 11:10:53 AM by Jess Askey
For Williams video games, the serial number is stamped in the front of the cabinet below the control panel. It is typically above the coin door to the right.
Posted 11/8/2007 6:51:33 PM by Jess Askey
On my Time Fantasy, there was a paper tag stapled on the underside of the Playfield with a serial number on it. The paper tag was about 1" by 2" and had the game name in Black with the serial number printed in Red.
Posted 4/7/2011 8:22:33 PM by Mark Skotchdopole
Found mine on paper tag...90910. interesting because my backglass is green. The guy who owns 90909 is blue. Could mine be the first green backglass made?
Posted 9/17/2011 9:18:09 PM by David DiEnno
Williams Gold Rush: The serial number is located in several places. Inside the lightbox, inside the lower cabinet, the upper playfield apron...all of these three are paper tags. They should all match. If not, sometime in the machine's service life, a part was replaced.
Posted 11/14/2011 8:40:51 AM by Pistol Pete
The serial number may also be found stamped into the metal sheet in the backbox near the right mounting bolt hole, front edge of the metal sheet
Posted 1/8/2012 6:09:04 AM by Crimson Clyde
Let´s see what I found on my Williams Big Deal System. There are two identical numbers I found after a long search. 1st: On the front of the cabinet right under the coin door stamped into the wood. 2nd: Inside the cabinet, viewed through the coin door with a lamp on the right side of the wood crossbrace, printed on a label with the words "Cabinets". These two # are identical! I found many more numbers inside the cabinet but I think that the one stamped in the wood is the true serial. The label with "Cabinets" on it is the only one which matches the one in the wood. So finally you have a double chance to find it. There's also a label called "Panel" inside the cabinet. This label really looks like that one with "Cabinets", but the number isn't the same with "Cabinets" and that in front of the Pinball system. So now, I have to find the year of construction...
Posted 2/10/2012 1:05:38 PM by Robin Leath
If you are struggling to read the stamped Serial No. on the front of the cabinat (Williams somewhere below and to left of coin door) try doing a rubbing by placing a piece of paper over it and rubbing a pencil so that the lead is flat to the paper. Rub this back and forth and the Serial No. will appear and make it easier for you to read. I had to do this on my Gorgar as the No. was in the black area and not heavily stamped, but became clearly visible on a rubbing !