Just throwing it out there is anyone has done or seen a restoration on a machine where certain aged features were left that way as part of the aesthetic?
As a reference point you can get guitars that have been modified to look aged/used and they come off looking really great.
The contrast obviously being that you wouldn't actually damage a machine to get this look but for Pinball machines most project or restoration candidates already have some really cool aspects to them from 20+ years of use/abuse.
My questions stems from a Pinbot I'm going to restore, I was showing someone (who doesn't care one bit about pinball machines) and they said how cool some of the aging is on it from the 30 years of use and now I see it and would hate to lose those things in a restoration. eg. around the flippers buttons the cabinet has been worn right down to a smooth wood finish from all the use. Every restoration thread I've seen pretty much aims to get back to the original if not better condition so I'd be interested to see if anyone has incorporated any of this kind of character into their work or even any suggestions on how one could do this well on a machine. Clear coat over the bare wood? Polish up the legs instead of replacing them due to the scratches?