As technology has advanced over the course of decades so has the construction of slot machines. Now that computers rule the world, the old, clunky, mechanical models have long since been relegated to the garbage heap for micro-chipped models, yet the game stayed in tune with its roots.
Very popular amongst novice betters because it requires not one whit of skill and the wagers are in very small denominations, slot machines normally spin a group of three reels with some sort of graphics on them. The reels are set in motion by a player forcefully moving a lever down and victory is determined by if the appropriate images form a direct line over one of the reels. How much coin is dispensed depends on what value the picture holds.
Blast From The Past
In prior years, slot machines were an amalgamation of gears and different sorts of handles. The core constituent of the machine was a metal tube that formed the foundation for the reels. This tube was linked to the lever that made the reels spin and then a breaking structure terminated the movement of the reels. Money would be distributed on cue from a sensor once the reels were firmly back in place. The whole process would commence all over again when another sensor picked up on coins being put into the slot.
All these components could be organized in a myriad of ways and throughout time, many structures have been applied, but there was one plan that accounted for how most systems were put together. It was called a basic design. Besides holding the reels, the metal tube also bore the weight of three discs with nicks that were linked to the corresponding reels. A second metal tube directly beneath the first, was the foundation for a kicker, or three pronged metallic formation. These prongs were aligned to place pressure on the nicks mentioned above. This lower tube also held stoppers that are jagged pieces that latch into the nicks.
Coils were affixed to the kickers and stoppers to keep them in the right place at the right time, meaning the kicker was in arrears of the discs, with the stoppers were forced into the discs to hold their position. So this is a really rudimentary explanation of how older slot machines functioned. The premise still holds true today, but is controlled much more by computer generated technology.