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F-14 Tomcat
  • Price: - SOLD -
  • Manufacturer: Williams
  • Date Produced: March, 1987
  • Units Produced: 14,500 (approx.)
  • Design: Steve Ritchie
  • Art: Doug Watson
  • Mechanics: Craig Fitpold
  • Music: Steve Ritchie, Chris Granner
  • Sound: Bill Parod, Chris Granner
  • Software: Ed Boon, Eugene Jarvis
Some above info courtesy of Mr. Pinball Flipper Pinball List

TRIVIA: F-14 Tomcat was the first game to feature a kickback device that fired the ball directly back at the flippers at high speed (called the "Jagov" kicker in this game, but referred to as the "Rip Kicker" in later games made by Data East). F-14 was also the first game to feature an "auto save" feature which returned the ball to the player if it was lost quickly, or shot between the flippers by the Jagov kicker.

Page Contents:

  1. Game Description
  2. Game Condition Details
  3. Game Images
  4. Game Sales Information

Game Description:

F-14 Tomcat was one of Williams' most successful pinballs of the late 1980's, and another classic from game designer Steve Ritchie, who produced many other blockbuster hits such as Black Knight, Black Knight 2000, Firepower, Flash, High Speed, The Getaway, Superman, and Star Trek: The Next Generation, just to name a few. With fast-paced exciting pinball action, F-14 Tomcat combines FOUR flippers, multiple ramps, great music, sounds, and speech, and an adrenalin-pumping FOUR-BALL Multiball mode complete with flashing, rotating red, white, and blue beacons on top of the backbox!

Shoot the playfield targets to spell T-O-M C-A-T and then shoot the upper right lane to launch balls into the ramps and lock them away for Multiball! Get three balls locked, then launch the fourth ball to release ALL FOUR BALLS and play a wild round of Multiball, enhanced by exciting background music and sound effects, and great lighting effects from the playfield flashers and rotating red, white, and blue beacons on top of the backbox. (Play this game in a room with the lights turned off for some really stunning effects!)

Shoot the ball lock again during Multiball to collect JACKPOT and score BIG POINTS!

Two flippers are found in the usual location in lower center of playfield. Two more flippers adorn the openings of the loop at the top of the playfield- see if you can keep the ball looping around the top of the playfield with the upper flippers, and also use them to hit TOM-CAT targets to advance towards Multiball!

Shoot the kickback lane under the main ramp to advance jet "kills" towards Extra Ball!

This is a great game that can be enjoyed by all, regardless of experience or pinball skills. Even though the multitude of rules and modes on this game will be more than enough to keep you busy, the game play is fun and straightforward enough to be entertaining and fun for any players, regardless of skill and age. These are the true signs of a well-designed pinball, and we're sure after a game or two, you'll agree!

Overall, it's no wonder why this game is such a classic. With so many fun things to do on the game, it will surely keep you entertained and always coming back for more!

Game Condition Details:

This particular F-14 Tomcat game is in overall excellent condition from top to bottom, and inside and out. It is a relatively "low mileage" game- not having been used too heavily during it's lifetime- so it has had it's mechanical, electronic, and cosmetic conditions preserved very well for a game of it's age. One of the better examples of this game that we've had over the years. Game is very clean inside and out, and has no "cigarette smoke" smell or damage from spilled food/drinks, as many used games can have. Overall a very well-preserved Williams classic pinball.

Cabinet & Backbox:
The exterior of cabinet and backbox on this game are in great shape. A few nicks and chips have found their way onto this game from normal use over the years, but nothing major, and with some light touch-up work here and there, we've restored quite a good, healthy look to the game's exterior. Paint colors and artwork are unfaded and still bright/vibrant. See
images below for more details.

Playfield on this game is in overall excellent condition from top to bottom with very few signs of use and wear/tear from normal operation over the years. This game had a factory mylar protector/overlay installed on it to help preserve the playfield artwork and finish, but the overlay was installed after the game had been used for a short time, so some signs of use and wear/tear are present under the mylar. These are comprised mainly of some minor wear to some of the lower light "inserts" or "lenses" on the playfield, down near the lower flippers and in center of playfield (see images below for more details). However, the mylar has helped to preserve the playfield against any further wear & tear and "mileage" and will continue to do so for no doubt several more decades into the future.

Plastics on this game are all original with only one chipped off edge on the thin piece just above the lower T-O-M targets on the left side of playfield (common on this game). All other pieces are in great shape with no damage- rare to see on a game that is this popular.

Translite (backglass):
Game feature it's original translite (mylar artwork) in the backbox, having no major or obvious signs of damage (rare to see on a game of this vintage). One or two small superficial scuffs are present on the back side, but do not penetrate the artwork or the translite, so are not obvious from the front side. No fading or "washed out" colors, either. Excellent overall shape.

Here is a detailed list of work that has been done on this game, followed by more details on condition and game images:
  • We have logged just over 55 hours in the restoration of this game.
  • Playfield top and bottom surfaces stripped of parts and assemblies for proper cleaning- right down to the bare wood and paint. Playfield surface hand cleaned, hand polished, and hand waxed with top-quality Carnauba wax.
  • New playfield star posts installed on playfield- completely replacing the old worn-out and faded posts.
  • All playfield parts have been removed and hand cleaned, or replaced with brand new parts where necessary. This includes light bulbs, posts, ramps, wireform ball guides, flipper assemblies, target banks, bumper assemblies, lamp PC boards, ball trough and associated parts, and any other parts and assemblies that are installed on the playfield.
  • All metal parts removed from playfield have been hand cleaned and polished for original bright shiny finish.
  • Stainless steel ball rails have all been refinished using our proprietary in-house process which removes unsightly ball marks and stains and restores the "grain" to the metal- giving it a "day one" new look!
  • All ramps have been completely removed and fully disassembled into all of their individual parts, including having wiring harnesses and switches/plugs removed for proper cleaning. Ramps fully cleaned, and all associated hardware and accessory parts cleaned, and reassembled.
  • Pop bumper assembly on this game has been fully removed, 100% disassembled, cleaned, and reassembled. Any worn or broken parts replaced with brand new parts.
  • Brand new coil sleeves installed in all coils on playfield to restore like-new performance and increase reliability.
  • All FOUR flipper assemblies completely removed, 100% disassembled, cleaned, and rebuilt with brand new rebuild kit parts, and reassembled. Flippers tuned and adjusted.
  • Flippers upgraded to use newer-style side-mount flipper return springs. These give the flippers a more "crisp" feel, and increase the lifespan and reliability of their operation.
  • New white flippers installed (flipper bat & shaft) for all 4 flippers.
  • All new rubber rings installed on playfield.
  • All light bulbs on top and bottom of playfield, and elsewhere in game, removed, cleaned, and replaced. Brand new light bulbs used as replacements for old worn, discolored, or burned out bulbs and flasher bulbs.
  • All light bulb inserts (or "lenses") in playfield surface cleaned and polished for maximum shine and light penetration.
  • Brand new chrome steel pinballs installed in game (game uses FOUR total).
  • Brand new rubber drive belts installed for rotating "beacon" lights on backbox.
  • Fender washers installed under top and bottom edges of slingshot bumper plastics to protect them from cracking/breaking from airborne balls.
  • Standup targets on playfield (20 total) have had their foam backing removed and replaced with brand new foam rubber for added durability and good looks.
  • Inside and outside of main cabinet and backbox completely stripped of parts, cleaned, parts individually hand cleaned, and reassembled.
  • Coin door completely removed and 100% disassembled. All parts (including wiring harness and switches) individually cleaned and detailed by hand and reassembled. Coin door metal parts professionally repainted and refinished for that brand new "day one" look! Fully working quarter coin mechanisms installed in coin door and tested for proper operation/adjustment.
  • Playfield glass lockdown bar and latch assembly completely removed, cleaned, and reassembled. Brand new strip of insulating foam rubber applied to underside of lockdown bar.
  • Legs washed, cleaned, and touched-up.
  • New leg levelers installed on all 4 legs, with locking nuts.
  • Leg bolts cleaned, polished, and reinstalled.
  • New leg protector pads installed on all 4 legs to protect cabinet from unnecessary wear.
  • New white nylon gliders installed on cabinet back and backbox underside edges to replace unsightly worn gliders.
  • Cabinet nicks, dings, scuffs and scratches patched up, touched up, and repainted, where necessary.
  • Solder joints on PC boards under playfield all reflowed and reinforced with fresh solder to prevent cracks and intermittent operation in the future.
  • Relay/Snubber boards upgraded with 1-watt flameproof resistors to prevent overheating (common failure components on these devices).
  • All electronics (PC boards) in backbox checked and tested for proper operation and good looks (no burned connectors, etc.) Fuses all removed, checked, and proper values verified- replaced where necessary.
  • Power supply upgraded with new heavy-duty filter capacitor and rectifier for added reliability and extended life.
  • Remote-mount battery holder installed for MPU board in backbox, with quick-disconnect connector for easy removal. The remote-mount holder prevents damage to the valuable MPU board from accidental battery discharge or leakage, which can destroy the board. Batteries are now mounted off-board and risk of damage is eliminated. Brand new fresh batteries installed.
  • Rotating Light Beacons on backbox have been fully removed and disassembled. New rubber belts installed on pulleys for beacons. Colored beacon "domes" cleaned.
  • Ball shooter plunger rebuilt with all new parts, including inner and outer springs, plunger rod/knob, nylon sleeve, e-clip, and rubber tip.
  • Backglass lift channel replaced with brand new black plastic piece.
  • Worn/broken/missing flash lamp resistors replaced on PC boards under playfield (commonly broken off from vibrations over the years).
  • Coin door lock replaced with brand new lock and keys.
  • New spinning target decal set installed (2pcs- front and back).
  • New ramp decal set instaleld (2pcs).
  • Carriage bolts on side-rails replaced with new rust-free bolts, nuts, and washers.
  • New decal for "Install 4 Balls" installed on lockdown bar latch.
  • New diodes installed on all 4 flipper coils and low-voltage switches on lower flipper assemblies. These commonly fail after years of use from vibrations during play.
  • New sheet of tempered safety glass installed over playfield for scratch-free view of play!
Partial List of New Parts on This Game:
  • ($5.60 value) New blue star posts installed throughout playfield.
  • ($4.00 value) New red pop bumper cap installed.
  • ($11.40 value) New coil sleeves installed in all playfield coils.
  • ($60.00 value) New flipper rebuild kits installed on ALL FOUR flippers.
  • ($16.00 value) New white flipper bats/shafts installed for all 4 flippers.
  • ($18.44 value) New rubber ring kit installed on playfield, including all round rings, flipper rings, and plunger tip.
  • ($18.00 value) New light bulbs installed throughout game.
  • ($7.50 value) New rubber drive belts installed for backbox beacon lights.
  • ($1.00 value) New protective fender washers installed under slingshot plastics.
  • ($3.50 value) New foam rubber backing installed on all playfield standup targets (20 total).
  • ($3.00 value) New foam rubber strip installed on glass lockdown bar.
  • ($8.00 value) New heavy-duty leg levelers installed on all 4 legs.
  • ($11.95 value) New leg protector pads installed on all 4 legs.
  • ($2.00 value) New white nylon gliders installed on back of main cabinet and backbox underside edges.
  • ($5.60 value) New 1-watt flameproof resistors installed on relay/snubber boards under playfield to prevent overheating/failure.
  • ($7.50 value) New heavy-duty rectifier installed on power supply for added reliability and extended lifespan.
  • ($9.95 value) New heavy-duty filter capacitor installed on power supply for added reliability and extended lifespan.
  • ($7.25 value) New remote-mount battery holder installed with quick-disconnect and fresh AA batteries.
  • ($11.00 value) New ball shooter parts installed for full rebuild.
  • ($8.00 value) New hard-laminated score and instruction cards installed.
  • ($7.50 value) New black plastic "lift channel" molding installed on bottom edge of backglass.
  • ($12.50 value) New 5-watt and 10-watt ceramic resistors installed as required on flasher lamp PC boards under playfield.
  • ($5.10 value) New coin door lock and keys installed on front door.
  • ($12.50 value) New decals installed for spinning target (front & back sides) and diverter ramp.
  • ($5.50 value) New grounded line cord end installed on line cord.
  • ($1.04 value) New carriage bolts and nuts/washers installed on front corners of cabinet side-rails.
  • ($1.50 value) New diodes installed on all 4 flipper coils and low-voltage switches on lower flipper assemblies.
  • ($45.00 value) Brand new scratch-free sheet of tempered safety glass installed.
Custom Modifications:
  • Flippers upgraded to use newer-style side-mount return springs.
  • Relay/snubber boards under playfield upgraded with 1-watt flameproof resistors to prevent overheating.
  • Power supply upgraded with new heavy-duty rectifier and filter capacitor for added reliability.
  • This machine has had it's software upgraded to the latest commercial game ROM revision L-4 and sound/speech ROM revision 1.00.
  • Protective fender washers added under slingshot plastics to protect against damage.
  • Remote-mount battery holder for MPU board added in backbox. Includes quick-disconnect for easy MPU board removal from the game, if ever needed.
  • New set of cabinet leg protector pads added under legs to protect game finish from unnecessary scatches and scrapes.
  • New hard-laminated score/instruction cards installed.

Game Images:

(Click for larger view)
Playfield- overall, finished view.
Playfield during restoration- stripped, cleaned, polished, waxed, and reassembly just starting. Still many full days of work to go!
Detail- lower playfield area. Note new hard-laminated score and instruction cards installed.
Detail- lower center playfield. Playfield on this game features a protective clear factory mylar covering, which helps to preserve and protect the finish and artwork. But the mylar on this game was obviously installed some time after the game had seen some use, so there are some signs of use and wear/tear that have become "trapped" under the installed mylar. As seen in this pic, some minor wear to some of the light inserts or "lenses" is present at the lower part of the playfield- on the white arrows and bottom parts of a couple of the red and blue arrows higher up. Fortunately, these are rather minimal, but with the mylar covering already installed, we are unable to restore or otherwise repair these signs of past wear, but they are mentioned here for accuracy.
Detail- right side of playfield. Bonus X lights leading to up-kicker in top right corner of playfield. Also seen here are the center target bank, and lower left C-A-T targets, just below the exit from the plunger lane.
Detail- left side of playfield. Lower left T-O-M targets visible here, as well as entry ways to Yagov kickback and upper playfield area. Note new "Kill Gen. Yagov" decal installed (1 of 2 new decals on the upper black ramp).
Same shot as above, but slightly higher-up.
Detail- upper left section of playfield. Black diverter ramp visible here. Note new blue/red "Landing/Lock On" decal installed, which replaces old worn & faded original decal. Ramp still retains it's original clear plastic "cover" on top- commonly missing on most used F-14 games. The solitary pop bumper on this game, seen here, has a brand new bumper cap as well as many new parts, and is fully rebuilt.
Upper right corner of playfield. Note new decals installed on the spinner on this game (front and back sides).

(Click for larger view)
Game overall view.
Game front and coin door. Black and red portions of cabinet front were repainted with fresh enamel during restoration, for a smooth, clean, glossy finish. Coin door was completely removed from game, disassembled into all individual components and parts, and all pieces cleaned and restored. Coin door frame and "skin", along with coin entry and return bezels/flaps were all repainted with original type semi-gloss black enamel. Wiring harness and components all cleaned and entire door rebuilt/reassembled, and adjusted for use with 25¢ coins (US quarters). (Game can also be set on "free play" for non-coin-op use).

Ball shooter housing fully removed and cleaned to restore shiny chrome look. All new plunger parts installed during rebuild of plunger unit.
Coin door interior.
Right side of main cabinet. Some small nicks, scuffs, and scratches have found their way onto this game from normal use/handling over the past years, but most all of them have been touched-up to be inconspicuous and help restore the original finish and look to the game.

Note new leg protector pads installed behind all 4 legs on this game. These help prevent any unnecessary wear/tear to the cabinet from the mounting of the legs. Some pre-existing wear marks are present on this game from the legs having been mounted for past years, but the new protector pads will help prevent any further wear and help cover up marks that may be visible with the legs installed.
Left side of main cabinet. A rather poor previous repair to some superficial wood damage behind the back leg was present when we received this game, but we have cleaned it up and repainted to match original colors and finish.
Main cabinet interior. All of interior was cleaned out, including removal of transformer, wiring harnesses, and other parts & accessories for complete and full cleaning.
Front and right sides of backbox. Front surround of backbox has been repainted with gloss black enamel paint to restore original look and finish. A few minor nicks and scratches on backbox sides and edges were also repaired and repainted during restoration. One scuff on the white circle near the top/center on this side was touched-up (near the Williams "W" logo).

Rotating "beacon" lights on the top of the backbox are all present on this game, and fully working- new rubber drive belts were installed on the motor mechanism to restore proper operation. Colored lenses are in good condition. Clear/white lens has a crack in it's base on it's back side (not visible from front or side views) but is not obvious and does not interfere with the lights' operation.

Score displays are in good shape and working. Some have been replaced over the years. Display digits were "moving" when this shot was taken (display animation in attract mode), so they appear to look funny in the picture, but they work fine.
Front and left sides of backbox.

Note brand new black plastic "lift channel" installed at bottom of backglass (for backglass removal).

Translite (backglass artwork) is in excellent condition, having only a couple of minor superficial scuffs on the back side, but none that penetrate the artwork or appear obvious from the front side. Very nice condition original translite on this game.
Backbox interior. Circuit boards in backbox are all in excellent condition and clean, with no signs of bad previous repairs or "hacks".

Note new remote-mount battery holder with quick-disconnect and fresh batteries. This gets the batteries off the valuable MPU board and prevents any corrosion damage to the board should the batteries ever go neglected and leak. Also makes future battery changing easy and quick (do it every 2 years!)
Back side of game. Back of main cabinet and edges on backbox were repainted with gloss black enamel to restore original finish. New white nylon gliders were installed on cabinet back, and backbox undersides.

Like all pinballs we sell, this machine also comes complete with instruction/operation manual and schematics (electronic diagrams), and fully functional coin door with all parts present and working. For our local customers, this game also includes
delivery, setup, and a full extended warranty on parts and labor, at no additional charge. For out-of-town customers, we offer our Limited Warranty.

For more details on our work on this particular game, see our restoration information page.

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