Special Engineering Interface

In the spring of 2018, engineers associated with a well-known, music-related museum located in Cleveland, approached Standard Change-Makers asking about a special interface for our token-dispensing change machines. They were setting up a new exhibit at the museum to commemorate pinball machines with musical themes. Many pinball machines designed in the past 40+ years celebrate popular bands – such as KISS, Aerosmith, Elvis, Alice Cooper, The Who, The Rolling Stones, etc. The museum staff also wanted to provide an incentive/rewards program for subscribing patrons.

This would be an interactive exhibit where patrons would be able to actually play some of these pinball machines – just like the old arcades of the 1970’s-1990’s. Their idea was to have a few token dispensing change machines – where a token would be used in the pinball machine – that accepted cash, and another that accepted credit cards. Visitors would be given tokens with any paid admission ticket with the option to purchase additional tokens to play the pinball machines from two change machines located within the exhibit. The museum staff decided that they would add a bar code reader to the change machines, and subscribing members would be issued a wristband or card with a barcode that when scanned at the change machine, would dispense free tokens.

The museum engineers presented their idea to the engineering staff at Standard. Together they discussed the capabilities of the machines with the integration of a bar code reader and interfacing methods that would ensure a bar code could be read, validated and a token dispensed. The Standard Change-Makers’ engineers modified special software into a couple of machine boards, and the machines were built and shipped to Cleveland. There, museum engineers integrated the bar code readers and tested the equipment, followed by various modifications and recommendations between the institution and Standard.

The museum applied special graphics decals to the “Cash Only” Model MC200, and the Cash & Credit Card Model MC720-CC. The machines were tested in the exhibit throughout July, and when everything was deemed stable and operational, the exhibit was dedicated and opened to the public in mid-August.

Standard Change-Makers has been in the business of designing and manufacturing change machines since 1955. All our machines are designed and supported by our own staff of software, firmware and mechanical design engineers. We know our machines, and we work everyday to find ways of improving the technology, the design and the manufacturing process to make our machines better and more reliable. If you have an application in mind and wonder if we can help, please contact us and together we’ll collaborate to make it work.