Organizing a Pinball Workshop

This has to be one of my favorite projects to work on.  This wonderful gentleman with a great sense of humour called to say he really needed my  help with his workshop.  As a pinball hobbyist in his spare time he fixes and refurbishes pinball machines back from the time when I was growing up including the newer models of machines.  When I visited his basement workshop to assess the project, there were literally hundreds of tools and miscellaneous items strewn throughout the shop, various pinball machines in different stages of repair (or disrepair as the case may be) as well as tons of little parts, glass templates, schematics, and various household workshop items. It was virtually impossible for anyone to work in the space or let alone find anything.

Workshop Entry View Before Organizing

 As we began the process of sorting items, we came upon dozens of items for which there were doubles, triplicates and more.  All  because this gentleman couldn’t see what he owned, so he just kept buying more of what he thought he needed. I’ve never seen so many utility knives and screw drivers in one workshop before!  By the end of our project, my client had generously donated literally hundreds of dollars of tools to the Habitat for Humanity ReStore.  Of course, part of this process of sorting and categorizing provided me with a pretty good education in  pinball machine parts one could only dream of.  In fact, I dreamt of pinball flippers, thumper bumper parts, coils, bulbs, fuses, ball bearings, springs and more! Of course, the goal for this project was to have every item sorted, categorized and contained so that my client could see exactly what he had for tools, parts and accessories. This took a lot of planning and a clear vision for the outcome.

The end result was pretty spectacular given that we were working within a budget and making every attempt to use containers that were already available to us in the space.  We did need to purchase shelving for the shop as well as a number of specific containers, but overall cost for products was less than $250.00.  At the end of  the last session when I was completing the final set up, my client asked that he be led into the room with his eyes closed just like on television. Upon entering the room and opening his eyes his reaction could not have been any better.  After a couple of  “omigods” and “wows”  from both him and his wife, they could not seem to believe their eyes. Workshop After Organizing

 This was the first time I actually received goosebumps from a client’s reaction.  Maybe I should have them all come in with their eyes closed! It was great and they are thrilled.  And even better than that?  He invited me to play a game of pinball on one of his refurbished machines.  I scored over 100,000 points (probably not too exciting for most people) and it brought me back to my teenage days. And today he sent me an email saying he was moving into his workshop he loved it that much! Goosebumps, pinball, happy clients…..what more could I ask for!?  When was the last time your clients gave you goosebumps?

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