How to Trick a Slot Machine to Win – Internet’s 15 Most Popular (and Notorious) Tips

How to Trick a Slot Machine to Win

How do you win on slots? What’s a surefire way to beat them? How to trick a slot machine to win?

If you’re reading this article, you’ve probably done your research because we ain’t the first ones discussing the topic! Slots are one of the most widely played casino games after all!

However, we still believe you are currently glutted with information without arriving at anything solid. That’s because you forgot to ask the most vital question – is it really possible to manipulate a slot machine?

The answer is no. There, we made it easy for you!

That said, successful attempts at brick-and-mortar casinos have been made in the past to hack slot machines and change the outcome. However, none of them can be termed legal. You might get arrested and penalized for the same.

Also, when it comes to online slots, there’s no way you can outdo the house’s mathematical edge. The odds never change. No matter how skilled you think you are in playing them, the casino always wins.

Winning on Offline Slots

Below we will jot down the internet’s most popular “tips” on how to win on offline slot machines. Use your best judgment while implementing them because we don’t guarantee that they’ll work. Above all, try them at your own risk!

Rig the Code

…that is, if you are a slot technician, designer, engineer, or a player with insider information.

Gambling regulatory authorities always keep an eye on fishy operations. This is why slot engineers exist. They find and fix flaws in the games for the authorities to audit and monitor them. It keeps slot gaming fair.

But, there’s every possibility that an engineer might rig the game – just like Ronald Dale Harris from The Nevada Gaming Control Board did. Using his expertise, reputation, and access to source code, he manipulated certain slot machines to pay out big money for specific sequences and coins.

The scam went undetected until his partner in crime, Reid Errol McNeal won big in a game of keno, eventually attracting suspicion. Harris was eventually prosecuted and imprisoned. He is currently listed in the black book by the Nevada Gaming Control Board and is barred from casinos in general.

So much for Breaking Vegas, eh?

Shave Coins

It’s an obsolete method, but still worth discussing. Shaved coins are a result of “clipping,” where a small portion of the metal is shaved off usually around the edge. Slot machines with optic sensors working separately from the physical comparitor mechanism have been hacked the most using this technique.

A shaved coin is sent down such machines along with an object that resembles the coin that should have been staked. The optic sensor detects the shaved coin as a normal coin and registers the payment. But once it reaches the comparitor mechanism that analyzes the size and weight of the coin, it is repelled because of the shaving.

Thus, the coin goes in as credit and comes out as bogus money. The other object, on the other hand, enters the machine and triggers the game to start.

The most famous case of duping slot casinos with shaved coins is one of Louis B. Colavecchio, an American casino counterfeiter dubbed “The Coin.” He scammed several casinos in Atlantic City and Connecticut by fabricating coins using hardened steel.

The scam was brought to light when casinos began noticing a surplus of coins. Colavecchio was eventually arrested in 1998 and imprisoned. After this incident casinos started replacing slot machine tokens with paper vouchers.

Use a Magnet

Once again, this hack is likely to work only on old slot machines made of metal. Modern-day slot machines are computer-programmed and aren’t magnetic.

The trick is to use a strong magnet outside the machine while spinning the reels. The moment you see a winning combination appearing, stop the reels with it and you’ll land a win. Now all you have to do is remove the magnet and claim your reward.

This isn’t an easy trick, but if done correctly, it can win you the big moolah.

Do a Yo-Yo

Also known as the stringed coin hack, yo-yo-ing involves tying a string around a coin before dropping it into a slot machine. Once it triggers the game to start, it can be brought back by simply pulling the string.

Yet again, this isn’t a hack you can use in modern-day slot machines. However, it could still work in some old machines and help you land big wins. But careful! A woman in Nevada attempting it was arrested. She had tied her coin to a brightly colored piece of yarn, which was easy to detect.

Thereafter, slot machines were designed to be more secure so the hack wouldn’t be possible. At present, coins have been replaced with paper currencies and tickets.

Use a Light Wand

The Light Wand hack was invented by one Tommy Glenn Carmichael – the infamous slot cheat. His is one of the most notorious cases of scams in the history of gambling.

His tool was capable of shining up the coin chute of a slot machine so brightly that it would blind the optical sensor in it and render it dysfunctional. As a result, it would not be able to determine how many coins have been deposited or when and how much to pay out.

Using this trick, Carmichael manipulated multiple slot machines at hundreds of casinos, turning small payouts into massive wins. He was eventually arrested and convicted.

Interestingly, Carmichael had bought a slot machine to study the inside and see if it can be rigged. His Light Wand was an outcome of this very study!

Necessity is not always the mother of invention; sometimes it’s greed and desperation, too.

Collect Piano Wires

This trick was once used in 1982 by a group of casino employees who were colleagues at the Caesars Boardwalk Regency Casino in Atlantic City. One of them had somehow opened a slot machine and attached 20” piano wires to its spring linkage.

This, in turn, could somehow jam the clock that counted the wheel rotations, which allowed the men to manipulate the number of spins. They ended up hitting a jackpot of $50,000 and getting arrested because the entire scam was caught on camera.

We say, use piano wires for what they are meant. Why invite trouble?

Get a Top-Bottom Joint

The Edison of slot machines must be mentioned again! In 1980, Tommy Glenn Carmichael was working at a TV repair shop when Ray Ming, his old friend introduced him to a miniature Bally’s slot machine and a cheating device called the “top-bottom joint.”

The tool was rare but effective. Its bottom was a piece of guitar string and the top part was a piece of metal shaped like the number nine.

The bottom when placed through the coin chute could act against the circuit board and send low-wattage electricity through it. The top, on the other hand, when placed through the coin slot could alter the circuit and hot-wire the hopper that stores coins.

Eventually, the circuit would be complete, thus triggering a payout and forcing the slot machine to release all the coins stored in it.

Using the top-bottom joint, Carmichael first duped a 5-cent machine in Las Vegas and collected $35 dollars worth of nickels. Thereafter, he tried it on several slot machines, winning quite some money. But you all know how the story ends. Greed is indeed a curse.

Device a Monkey Paw

Carmichael’s inspo strikes again! His Monkey Paw was one of those cheating devices that once rocked the offline gambling industry! This was the time when a new video poker slot machine was released by Bally and International Game Technology. It ran on microprocessors and RNG that apparently made cheating impossible.

However, Carmichael being the genius that he is, spent nearly 6 months devising his infamous Monkey Paw out of spring steel and guitar wires. This cheating device could be placed through the coin chute, thus tripping the micro switch and causing the slot machine to pay out  $1,000 an hour!

But technology always asks what’s next. Slot gaming kept on improving and eventually outdid the Monkey Paw. Today, it is no longer effective in modern slot machines. Nevertheless, it’s worth a mention.

Implement a Bill Validator Device

It’s as simple as it sounds. A Bill Validator is a small electronic device wrapped around or stuck onto a bill of a smaller denomination (usually $1). When inserted into a slot, it tricks the machine into accepting it as a $100 bill. You get ample credits without anyone raising eyebrows. Safe one!

Replace the Computer Chip

The mastermind behind his hack is Dennis Nikrasch – a Vegas slot cheat who spearheaded what’s probably one of the biggest scams in the history of Las Vegas. Over a span of 22 years, Nikrasch swindled casinos out of $16,000,000 simply by rigging slot machines.

He started his career as a locksmith and later used his expertise to dissect and find flaws in a slot machine he bought. Eventually, he figured out that the computer chips inside such machines could be re-programmed and manipulated in a way they always pay out jackpots.

Once a part of the infamous Genesee Crime Family, Dennis Nikrasch was arrested twice and eventually died at the age of 69 from unknown causes. 

Find a Software Glitch

When you find a software glitch, leverage it to the utmost: This is perhaps an unwritten law in the realm of slot cheaters. One can trick the machine into paying out the jackpot simply by playing a game in a specific style and for a specific stake.

However, there’s one flaw – the real jackpot winners are denied winnings because of it. This can easily draw suspicion if you try it. We’ll highlight two very famous cases of a software glitch leading to insane payouts in slot gaming.

One is that of a gambling grandma, 90-year-old Pauline McKee from Illinois who bagged $41 million on a slot machine in the Isle Casino Hotel Waterloo.

She was denied the payment by the casino operators who cited the malfunctioning of the slot machine as the reason. McKee eventually sued the casino and lost, because indeed the machine had malfunctioned.

Another John Kane won $500,000 by manipulating a glitch in gaming machines that let him replay the winning hands multiple times. Kane had unknowingly discovered the glitch but soon roped in his friend Andre Nestor as his partner in crime. Both were eventually arrested.

Winning on Online Slots

The slot-hacking tips discussed so far are insane and illegal. All of them! Additionally, they are strictly for offline slots. Now, here are some tips for winning on online slots. Well, they aren’t exactly hacks and tricks, but what wise slot players suggest on the Internet.

Be Choosy About the Slot you Play

In the world of online casinos, no two slot games are built equal. There would be some differences or others in the features, RTP, Volatility, House Edge, symbols, bonus rounds, paylines, paytables, and more.

You have to consider the primary factors such as RTP, Volatility, and House Edge to really judge if a slot is worth playing. Next, you have to consider the paylines and paytable as well. More than that, you have to play to know what’s true in theory and practicality.

So, be careful while picking a slot to play. Read as many slot reviews as you can to know you are choosing the right game. Although this has nothing to do with whether or not you can win on the slot, it will help you zero in on the slots that are a hit with players (probably because they win in them).

Play Demo Games

As already discussed, there’s no better way to know an online slot inside out than to play it. Practice makes a man perfect, but these games have nothing to do with your skill. Trying your hands at a free demo slot will help you test the waters and know how it behaves.

Doing so will also tell you whether investing your bankroll in it would be worth it. Of course, you won’t be able to win any real money, but you will be able to figure out the possibility of landing a win.

Don’t Chase Losses

In other words, stick to your budget. This is one of the most important pieces of advice from people explaining how to win at slots. Decide your budget before you start playing and don’t cross it. If you reach the threshold, quit. Don’t bet money you can’t afford to lose.

Use Bonuses

The best way to increase your chances of beating a slot is by making use of slot bonuses. They not only fatten your bankroll but also raise the overall RTP of the game.

Theoretically, a win can be expected only when the RTP of a slot exceeds 100%. Of course, the profit will depend on the wagering requirement on the bonus.

To sum up, playing slot machines is a no-brainer, whether you do it online or offline. You don’t need skills and strategies to win. However, you do need luck – a lot of it – even if you used all the tricks in the book (which are mostly illegal anyway).