Restored – Williams (1996) Tales of the Arabian Nights Pinball

Tales of the Arabian Nights (TOTAN) pinball is one of my “grail” pins… meaning, a machine that I’ve been looking to own for quite some time.   These machines are very hard as most collectors hold on to them forever.   These machines are considered the most beautiful pinball machines ever made due to the machine layout, style, music and theme.

We were lucky enough to actually have 2 machines to restore.   They both were in reasonable shape considering, but suffered horribly from incandescent lamp burn and the resulting heat damage.   The heat from the standard bulbs over time charred the play field and dried out the inserts causing them to lift off the play field.


Cabinet Restoration

  • Original artwork was salvaged.  Color keyed repairs and wood damage repaired.
  • clear coat re-applied over entire surface to lock in the repairs and prevent any further sun damage and abrasion wear
  • New legs, misc hardware, buttons
  • Restored coin door

Circuitry Restoration

The latest release of the WPC series of circuit boards have become more reliable with less parts with one exception, the power driver boards.  Williams did away with separate bridge rectifiers and went with cost effective power diodes to do the same function.   However, these items do not disperse heat well at all.   Ironically, the diodes that drive the general illumination (that did all the damage to the play field) also caused a lot of heat damage on the driver board.    Anyone who says LEDs don’t save pinball machines are crazy because if this machine had been converted earlier, all of these repairs would not have been necessary.

Playfield Restoration

The play field was fully dismantled and cleaned.   All inserts were cut out, cleaned and leveled.  Multiple series of automotive clear coat and water slide graphics were necessary to get the play field flat and ready for paint work repair.   The burned natural wood area was re-colored and hole damage was repaired and painted.   Multiple airbrush layers were locked in with more automotive clear (I can’t even count how many)… and finally the whole play field was final wet sanded and buffed.

The following items were also upgraded

  • Wareroom rail was epoxy coated white for a different look as was the skill shot
  • Scimitar blade was plated in nickel for an unbelievable look
  • New apron
  • All new plastics
  • All new ramps
  • All LED conversion
  • New pop bumper assemblies
  • New rubber and balls


Before and After



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