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Gumball Vending Machines

Everyone remembers as a kid begging their parents for a penny (or a dime or quarter, depending on how old you are) so they could buy a gumball out of a Ford gumball vending machine. Many of those old machines are collectors items now, but today children are still putting more money than ever in these machines.

Gumball vending machines are everywhere. In restaurants and bars. In offices and waiting rooms. Anywhere there are people with loose change, you're bound to find at least one. Set to take pennies, nickels, or quarters, these machines dispense either bulk gum or gum balls. With amazing reliability, people put in money and out comes the gum.

Have you seen the new ones? These aren't the old gumball vending machines of the past. Some new machines have the gumball spiral down through a maze or other amusement that adds an entertainment portion to the vend. Popular with children (and adults), these value-added vends help these machines compete for cash in the competitive world of vending.

Looking to buy one? Small business owners can put one in a high traffic area to capture impulse buyers. They're also very popular with homeowners who enjoy the nostalgia of having a gumball vending machine. There are several manufacturers in the United States with distributors nationwide. Shop carefully, however. Quality can vary, especially in the coin-op mechanism, from unit to unit.

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