by Alan Lewis


This 1955 Gottlieb Southern Belle pinball machine is a sample game, and is possibly a prototype or engineering sample game.The cardboard apron is different than the production games and it matches the flyer picture exactly.

Here is the flyer apron:

It would have been easy if I had a production game since The Pinball Resource sells a reproduction cardboard apron.But the differences are too great.

apron production vs sample.jpg

The original apron on my game is on top and a production apron on bottom.The differences are:

1)     No GAME OVER insert (a larger insert at number 5 position)

2)     Number holes are different size

3)     Ball numbers are above the holes on sample game rather than below

4)     No ball number arrow on production apron

5)     FLIPPER graphic arrow is different style

6)     Score cards are different sizes

7)     Ball number inserts appear to be on a different angle (position) in playfield

Since the differences are too great I canít use a reproduction apron.

I will have to make my own.Hereís how I did it at home:

apron scan.jpg

Scan the apron in three overlapping sections and stitch together.I used the AutoStitch free program.

Import this image into a graphics editing program, I used Microsoft Publisher.Check overall size of apron image and adjust if needed.Find a matching font and size.Draw new text directly over old text in photo.


apron2 FINAL for web page.jpg

Delete the original photo and what is left is the new apron text in the proper position and size.


Print the apron as three sections with an overlap for matching panels together.Align the three panels and tape together in a hidden area.Knife trim through the overlaps to get two butt edge seams for the panels.Tape the panels together on the rear face.Overlay the original apron and trace the outline and trim.Punch out the holes and score the lines for the instruction cards.

Use either card stock or cover stock paper for the apron.It needs to be stiff.Cover stock is best if you can find the color.


The trim seams are mostly hidden underneath the instruction cards.