With Stern releasing the new TWD with a price increase in the pro I'd like the pinside crowd to breakdown the pinball cost and see really how much it cost it terms of parts to build a pinball machine. Because at $6K all I see is Gary filling is pockets with more cash. On the other hand i really think that Stern has hit the fragile balance between making a huge profit and pissing people off. What I mean by that is that TWD looks absolutely amazing... but with the price increase on the pro....i think it has really pissed a lot of people off. So how much cheese is Gary picking up per unit? I'm assuming that he buys in bulk so that is reflected here.
Cabinet costs (=/- $300 per macine):
Wood = $45
Screws and metal fittings = $20
Artwork Prints and decals = $35
Back of playfield decal (prison decal) = $6
Miscellaneous plastic parts = $20
Power supply and wiring = $15
Employee cost to build = $45
Employee cost to stick stickers = $20
Legs = $25
Lockbar, rails, hinges = $30
Coin Door = $45
Artwork ($10-$15 per machine):
I'm guessing it takes a designer or series of designer roughly 300-400 hours to design this thing and let's say they get paid $100 per hour. That is $30K-$40K in artwork. Now let's divide that by roughly 3000 units. It averages at about $10-15 dollars per machine.
This would include backglass, cabinet design and playfield artwork for Pro and LE playfield.
Printing, drilling CNC machine ($120 per machine)
So I'm guessing it takes a CNC machine about 20 minutes to make one of these.... = $33 bucks
Printing artwork on playfield another 20 minutes = $33 bucks
Clearcoating another 20 minutes = $33 bucks
Actual wood for playfield $20
Engineering ($60 per machine)
I'm guessing it takes an engineer about 600 hours to make one machine. Or the better part of 75 working days (8 hours). Now multiple that by 2...because I will assume that one engineer is not enough. And put a billing rate of $150 per hour. We are looking at $180K. Divide that by 3000 machines and it averages out at about $60 dollars per machine.
Standard Playfield parts ($300 per machine)
Since these parts are purchased in bulk and I will assume that the regular parts that are used from one machine to the other (flippers, braids, coils, hex screw, hex post, rubbers etc) I'm guessing Gary gets mad deals on this since he orders oh let's say 100,000 units per order.
Specific parts that are unique to one machine ($400 per machine)
In this instance let's think about the Fish Tank, the molded zombies (Bash Toy and heads) and all the specific metal parts that are unique to TWD.
Fish Tank Heads = $3 per piece for a total of $9
Tank Assembly = $3
Bash Toy = $6
Bash Toy showing guts assembly = $10
Head hunder ramp = $4
Metal Rails and guides = $50
Prison C Block = $35
Prison C Block Head = $4
Door mech for C block = $10
Ramps = $40
Lifting ramp mech = $50
Diverter = $10
Crossbow = They already paid for engineering there with AP so I am guessing maybe another $50 for that mech
Oversight = $100
Programming (about $90 per machine)
So I'm thinking a programmer works a good 1000 hours to program this thing. With a junior programmer in tow to help out for another 800 hours for at total of 1800 hours. At a rate of $150 per hour for a total of $270K. Again divide by 3000 machines is roughly $300 per machine.
Employee line assembling a machine ($200)
According to some of you Stern can produce roughly 40 machines per day. I will assume it goes through about 10 people from start to finish. So let's say the line employee gets paid $20 per hour we should assume that it costs about $200 to assemble one.
Employees need tools to assemble these things....yes even the microwaves ($300)
I'm guessing employees go through a lot of tools in one year. So let's put that at $3 million dollars worth of tools per year. 3 different pinball per year, so let's put that down to $1 million in tools.... so roughly $300 bucks per machine
Electricity / Fuel / Maintenance ($300)
Let's tack on another $300 per machine to help the business stay afloat and make sure the toilets can flush at Stern headquarters.
Non pinball related employees..... ($300)
Someone needs to answer the phone and get paid right. So lets say another 60 employees that are not on the floor or doing pinball related things. Let's average out their pay at $50K per year. $3 million. So again let's tack on another $300 per machine.
Warranty items ($300)
So we will put another $300 in here in case something goes wrong and they need to warrant something.
GRAND TOTAL = $2385 (cost)
Lets' add the big fat profit margin so 25% profit to add to the last grand total = $600 per machine
Licensing = $600 per unit
I've been generous in some areas but might be in total left field for other areas. Who would like to help me refine this thing.
So how much do distributors tack on? 50%...cost is still about $4.8K so where is the other $1.2K????