Tuesday, 9 July 2013

CMS - Chameleon

For a long time I have been interested in these £500 jackpot video screen fruit machines. The only problem is, they cost too much money to play!

I noticed a  CMS Chameleon on a popular advertising website so made contact and struck a deal for it.

It was advertised with having 5 games which were classic roulette, haunted house, eggstra cash, casino poker and Chinese whispers.

So I have the machine and 5 games to play. Should keep me entertained for a while then.

The games are very simple, no holds, no nudges and no feature board. They are all very similar with features and bets.

You can play the games with 10 lines or 20 lines at 5p each. So 50p or £1 a spin. The clever part is once you have spun, if you win you can then do super bets upto £10 a spin on the fruits and poker and upto £100 a spin on roulette. What's even better is you can play one game and win, you can exit and go into another and use the super bets on that game instead. So I played haunted house, go a good feature, came out and went into roulette and sure enough, I could put a £100 bet down, provided I couldn't win more than £500 in 1 spin. So about £13.75 on a number is the max. You can do £100 on red/black/odd/even and so on.

The cabinet is very tidy. It really does look great. It came with a top box that was not fitted as it makes the overall height of the machine almost 2 meters. A very simple open the cab up, feed the wires from the top box through the hole in the top on the cab, bolt the top box down and plug it in.

So, I get the machine in the test menu and I spy add other games. I load up the sub menu and I can add 2 other games, fun fair and samurai. All I need to do is take a game off and replace with the new game, turn the 'stats' key and save. Where's the 'stats' key?

On the right hand side on the cab there are 2 locks. The bottom I the refil key and the top is the 'stats' key. Only problem is, I have no 'stats' key. A refil key fits this lock but it will not turn. I unplugged the wires from the refil key and replaced with the wires from the 'stats' key. I then took off casino poker and added fun fair, turned the key and a little 'save' message came up, hit that and I had a new game!

So overall I have 7 games on the cab but I believe there are around 15 for it.

The games are stored on a standard sd card that is plugged into the motherboard. The format for this card is CMS's own because I took the sd card out, stuck another in with some files I got from a member on the mpu mecca and got a message telling me the format for the card is basically wrong. It's something I need to look into.

Overall, for the money I paid for this unit, I am more than happy with what I have. It has also really opened my eyes to how much these machine take from the people who play them! The basic payout % is 88% but that does rise to 94% if you play £10 a go. Sounds good yes? Well, no. I have also in the past owned a Reflex Fortune 500. This could be played on £10 all the time, just put your money in and press start. £10 a go. Thing is, it paid out 98%. Now, 4% does not sound much but over the lifespan of a video fruit machine..... we are talking thousands!

You will also find this cab had £70 jackpot games. I have seen it in a couple of pubs so will have to venture in to investigate and gets some photos and videos!

From the image you will see a couple of games that are on £500. Would be interesting to see how these play.

I can make out Cash Deck(?) and Keno. Not seen either of these on £500 but my search continues.

The other 3 are Haunted House, Eggstra Cash and Chinese Whispers. All these are on my cab.

I have also found a photo with a menu that has 6 games in, instead of 5. Would be very handy. 5 is good but, hell, i'd have a menu that held 10! Would make life so much easier.

6 games. I have all these games on my Chameleon. Just want that menu!

Here's a few pics I have found dotted about the internet of various other games for this cab. Mainly found on the cms website.

Casino Poker.

Fun Fair.

Haunted House.

 Super Stars.

Tic Tac Toe.

Then you have Eggstra Cash, Chinese Whispers and Classic Roulette.

There was also a game called Pacman and also a crazy Frog Football game.

From what I remember the Pacman game was similar to Haunted House, just the 1 feature. It also had £10 super bets like the other games.

This pic is just a video still from content on youtube. I do remember it though in the Section 16 days.

The other is Football Crazy 500. Now I have never seen or heard of this one. It appears to be in it's own cabinet so there's a good chance it may not be in a multi game cab.

If you are reading this and know of any other games, please get in touch with me. If you have any photos or videos, again, please contect me so I can update this post.

There is also a game called Magnificent 777′s. I have no information on this at all.


So another just turned up on gumtree. This times it's the £70 jackpot version. I has 5 games installed, 4 of which are on mine but £500 instead of £70.

Captain Jack.

Eggstra Cash.

Haunted House.


Fun Fair.

Now a set of £70 games really would appeal to me. If anyone has any information on this, please get in touch :-)


So, I have now copied my sd card to my pc so I have a copy of all my games including the menu backed up. There was also a manual included so after having a read up I can change games to Cat C/£35 jackpot.

Very simple process, 2 banks of switches, bank 1 and bank 2. On bank 2, set switches 1 and 2 off and the games become £35! Put them back on and it's £500 again. I only had to put switch 1 off and 2 was already off.

Still, happy days!

After a play about on each game the Casino Poker really comes to life now. Now when you win a hand you get a hi/lo instead of an auto collect! Excellent!

So, if you are reading this and have a CMS machine like mine. Lets get a database of these old games. I am more than willing to share what I have. Are you?


If anyone owns a CMS multi game machine please get in touch, I now have several sd card images. Very good chances I have games you might not have.

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Another old Barcrest Trick!

In the same era as the Starwars and clones there was 2 machines. One was called It's Amazing, the other Pacman.

In true Barcrest fashion back then, they both had a trick!

If you could do your skills then these were great!

The trick was simple. If the machine is boarding you would play £40 through, usually on £1. This would unlock the feature Cash Climber 'RED'. This was a skill shot which got progressively faster. Once £40 through, I would get on 50p and get that feature red. Every time you got a trail held, it would upgrade cash and features red. As soon as Cash Climber was red you'd take your board and it would land that feature!

Now, you have skilled up to £70, happy days! Back to £1 and see if the machine is still putting you on the feature board. What's that? It is?! Well that'll be £40 back again and then repeat the process.

And again...... and again....... and........ what's this? The machine is not boarding now? That's right. You could get these machine wanting upwards of £70 just to put you on the feature, which in turn would offer not alot to say the least!

Really good fun playing these back then. Was quite a few about too!

Anyway, here's,


It's quite funny. The video was uploaded 2 years ago. This machine is still about! I know where it is now!

It's Amazing.

Amazing was slightly better. The skill appeared to be just a little bit slower on Amazings. Pacmans seemed faster for sure.

An old Barcrest Trick!

Back when Barcrest were churning out £70 jackpot pub machines they were making them with tricks rolled in. Obviously programmed in.

This trick was one of the best! It was really good as the machine had been 'cloned' several time over. They were Rob Da Bank, Starwars A New Hope and Rainbow Riches. There was a further clone Pacman Power Up but that came out after the trick had been 'chipped' out.

It was very simple. The machine had to be on reset reels (Just turned on or not been played since it had been switched on). You could gamble and go with it if it was early in the day but that was waaaay to risky!

This was called the 'Superhold'.

The machine could be played on either 25p, 50p or £! a go. When they were on £35 jackpot it was just 25p and 50p. The £1 was added on when they got upgreaded to £70 jackpots.

So, you walk upto the machine, see the reset reels. You put 25p in and changed stake to 25p. The you would put in 50p and change upto 50p. Press start and change back down to 25p. You would do this over and over and eventually the reels would shuffle into the reset reels again, just like what was showing when the machine was just switched on. You would put in 50p, change stake to 50p and wham! It would offer a superhold! What's better is....... jackpot was there with that superhold!

If you had units to yourself, this could happen very cheap. I have had it do it first and second 50p spins, so £1.25 and £1.75 in for £70 each time. But when they were getting done by other it would cost around £45 but still, a very easy £25 profit! Only draw back was, if it got done over and over it would critical alarm! This is what killed the trick in the end.

So now in 2013, this trick will not work so don't try it. Well, you can try it but it won't work. No doubt there are a few left in the world that work but it has been a very time time since I have seen one. If one ever turned up and 'worked', it usually got critical alarmed.

If you had no 50ps, you could do it with £1s by doing £1 spins and then changing down to 25p. 50ps were alot better, you made twice as much!

Rainbow Riches. (17)

Starwars. (5)

Rob Da Bank. (4)

As you can see, so plainly obviously coded in. Someone made a lot of money from this!

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Building a Coin/Penny/Arcade Pusher

So I have always wanted a single player coin pusher. Most pushers you see these days are big 3/4/6/8 player machines, and they take up alot of space!

Over the past few years there has been some really good single player coin pushers hit the arcades. Machines like Pacman Ball and Magic 7s. One of these would be perfect for me but the price tag of around £1000 just puts me off just a little bit.

After looking over youtube at various homemade coin pushers I have decided to make my own. I am going to build it inside an old fruit machine cabinet. I already have one of these so my first job is simple..... I am going to completely strip the machine down so all I have is an empty fruit machine cabinet. The machine I have decided to kill is Mdms Safe Cracker Club. It's something that I picked up many years ago. It was never 100% working. I never liked clubbers that much so it's going to be my choice!


 The above clip is the machine, all working bar the sound the the alpha display. Since the video was taken the machine has pretty much stopped working. Over the next few weeks or so I am going to try various motors, showing how you can get them running. The first thing I thought of was using a big fan. That has a nice big motor but will it have enough power for what I need?

UPDATE 26/03/2013

 Right. I have a couple of ideas on what to use for the motor. First thing I though was an big fan I had that broke! Now this thing just isn't man enough for the job. It's a shame as it was a good size, fitted in the cab very well and even had a piece of metal that came off it that would go into a frilled hole to secure it! Never mind. Next up is a window wiper motor. I bought a rear subaru wiper motor. I was unsure if this would be ok but it was only 99p+£4 p&p off ebay I thought i'd give it a shot...

Well, it came the other day. I got my power supply that powered an old external hard drive (out put DC 12V 1.2AMP), I cut the 'plug' at the end off it to leave me 2 exposed wires. Now, I don't have a clue about anything like this. I didn't really know what would happen when plugged into the wall socket and then turned on! I got he wiper motor and cut the plug/socket off that too. That gave me 4 exposed wires. I powered to 12v power supply (and didn't blow up or electrocute myself) and went around the wires, just see see what happened. Eventually I found the right wires. Great speed and perfect for the job..... but it's a rear wiper motor! This is no good. It just turns one way then back again. It does not spin round and round. Turned everything off and put it aside, got back on ebay and have ordered a front window wiper motor, also so LED strips.

Once these arrive, I will do a short video showing it working (provided it's not naff)! If the rear wiper motor is anything to go by then the front motor will be perfect, and surprisingly easy to get up and running. The fan motor might one day get a use. Have you seen the type of pusher that flicks the coins from the bottom instead of being dropped in from the top? Well, I am pretty sure that fan motor would beable to do this with ease!

UPDATE 01/04/2013

Ok, the motor arrived and it works! To start with I had a 12v 1.2amp power supply. This does power the pusher but just not enough. If I am fair it's no good at all! So back to the loft I go, in search of another power supply. I find an old sega megadrive supply. This out puts 10v 0.85amp. The spped on this is great, very good. Only problem is it's over heating so it's a no no.

So back to ebay and a 12v 5amp is bought for £5.99. This has also arrived now. Plugged in and this is now spinning too fast!

I have had a search for devices that will slow the motor down. I will report back once I have found something suitable, or a power supply that has less power and at the same time does not overheat!

UPDATE 16/04/2013

So I have got the coin pusher pretty much up and running with the old 12v 1.2amp power supply. Decided to stick with this as the speed is just about right.

I have the LEDs all in as you can see. Just need to fix those in place. They are just hanging there at the moment!

Also, I have fixed a couple of old draw runners to the pusher which keeps everything in line and gives the motor less to do. I have also installed a metal lip at the front so the coins build up.

Things I need to do is,

- Pusher, now draw runners are fixed to the under side, I need to fix something to the front as there's a gap.
- Design the area where the coins are going to fall down. This will be either pins so the coins bounce about on the way down or 'alleys' so the coins go down to the same place each time.
- Make something where the coins go in
- Decide to get some perspex to seal the unit. Not overly sure if I will do this or not. I suspect those will cost a few quid and this is strictly as cheap as possible project. Plus, it will be only be myself and my children who will be playing it anyway.

UPDATE 16/04/2013

I have taken a few videos along the way. I found a few on youtube but the information you need is not always to hand.

Below are various clips I took as the project went along.

Here is my empty cab. Just a short clip to show how a fruit machine is perfect for a coin pusher!


Some more of the cab. Showing cash boxes and so on.


The rear wiper motor which turned out to be no good at all! You live and learn.


Making use of the cash boxes and using some scrap metal to divert the coins into those cash boxes.


Now those traps are in, time to test them!


More trap testing.


Connecting the LED strips up to old power supplies/phone chargers.


Powering up the FRONT wiper motor with a sega megadrive power supply.


And finally hooking the motor upto the 'pusher' past of the coin pusher.