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(Topic ID: 249870)

Continued playfield issues with JJP and Stern


By f3honda4me

1 year ago



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There are 6976 posts in this topic. You are on page 127 of 140.
#6301 65 days ago
Quoted from paynemic:

He deserved the eject. Punk

Sure. Be nice while JY64 can troll all the threads he wants. You were nice stopping at punk.

#6303 65 days ago
Quoted from JY64:

I do not whine like a bitch

#6304 65 days ago
Quoted from underlord:

Sure. Be nice while JY64 can troll all the threads he wants. You were nice stopping at punk.

He tends to troll in the JJP threads although it appears he's never owned a machine....maybe we works for Stern ?

#6305 65 days ago

He's just a troll, there's no mystery behind it.
His posts have been the exact same agenda driven since day 1.
He can be funny though.

#6306 65 days ago

Should be ejected from Pinside altogether.

16
#6308 64 days ago

It does make me laugh that an unpopulated playfield is the typical resolution to problems. I mean that’s pretty much like a car company sending you a new gearbox under warranty and saying “good luck!”.

Even if you disregard the labour involved in removing all the parts, there’s going to be numerous things that need to be desoldered, removed in a certain order, etc and then reassembled on the new playfield, assuming it’s properly routed (are they?). It’s not a task for the feint hearted, and even your typical pinball tinkerer would be intimated I think.

Easy to see why owners see it as an offset to the depreciation loss from the original blemishes, rather than a project they will (or can) take on themselves. Just give it to the new owner and kick the can down the road.

Still, it is amusing that this is the resolution offered. Not a populated playfield ready to drop in, or providing an engineer to come and install it for you, etc.

#6309 64 days ago
Quoted from Durzel:

It does make me laugh that an unpopulated playfield is the typical resolution to problems. I mean that’s pretty much like a car company sending you a new gearbox under warranty and saying “good luck!”.
Even if you disregard the labour involved in removing all the parts, there’s going to be numerous things that need to be desoldered, removed in a certain order, etc and then reassembled on the new playfield, assuming it’s properly routed (are they?). It’s not a task for the feint hearted, and even your typical pinball tinkerer would be intimated I think.
Easy to see why owners see it as an offset to the depreciation loss from the original blemishes, rather than a project they will (or can) take on themselves. Just give it to the new owner and kick the can down the road.
Still, it is amusing that this is the resolution offered. Not a populated playfield ready to drop in, or providing an engineer to come and install it for you, etc.

In general, the worst warranties and service of almost any industry.

#6310 64 days ago
Quoted from Mike_J:

In general, the worst warranties and service of almost any industry.

The distributor sales model is also outdated. They say it's to have someone there to help you out if you have issues, but I've found that Stern is easier to contact than my distributor, and so far my distributor hasn't been much help at all. If they're going to tell you you're out of luck when you have problems anyways, why not just sell everything directly and end the pretense?

#6311 64 days ago
Quoted from Durzel:

It does make me laugh that an unpopulated playfield is the typical resolution to problems. I mean that’s pretty much like a car company sending you a new gearbox under warranty and saying “good luck!”.
Even if you disregard the labour involved in removing all the parts, there’s going to be numerous things that need to be desoldered, removed in a certain order, etc and then reassembled on the new playfield, assuming it’s properly routed (are they?). It’s not a task for the feint hearted, and even your typical pinball tinkerer would be intimated I think.
Easy to see why owners see it as an offset to the depreciation loss from the original blemishes, rather than a project they will (or can) take on themselves. Just give it to the new owner and kick the can down the road.
Still, it is amusing that this is the resolution offered. Not a populated playfield ready to drop in, or providing an engineer to come and install it for you, etc.

Yea it basically a big fuck off from the manufacturer.....I mean whats a play field cost them....maybe $300-$400 ?

#6312 64 days ago
Quoted from seenev:

The distributor sales model is also outdated. They say it's to have someone there to help you out if you have issues, but I've found that Stern is easier to contact than my distributor, and so far my distributor hasn't been much help at all. If they're going to tell you you're out of luck when you have problems anyways, why not just sell everything directly and end the pretense?

Totally agree....I am sure some are better than others, but whenever i had a real issue they told me to call the manufacturer....

12
#6313 64 days ago

I have been a big supporter of Stern over the years; but this policy of sending unpopulated playfields to replace defective ones is simply not acceptable. Nor is it acceptable for JJP to do the same. These games are simply too expensive.

Is there really any other industry where a consumer would be expected to go through this process?

However, as sales and demand seem to remain strong for new releases, despite the pf lottery (and even being in the heart of a pandemic), what impetus does any pinball manufacturer have to change their policy?

As soon as Stern/Elwin releases their next title, all else will be quickly forgotten.

10
#6314 61 days ago

Can't believe I've made 101 posts to this long running, very redundant topic.

Today, I received a CPR repro PF for "Paragon" (after waiting 5 1/2 years after signing up for it.

Was a huge reminder of the artistry and quality produced by Stu and the CPR team. They didn't release it until it was "just right".

Too bad Stern is unwilling to spend an extra $50-$100 for better PF plywood (would solve many problems...warping, graining, cratering). I bet if they offered CPR quality plywood as a $200 upgrade on a Premium/LE, most people would opt-in just to make sure they didn't have to deal with all the BS in this topic!

IMG_2180 (resized).jpeg
#6315 61 days ago
Quoted from snaroff:

Can't believe I've made 101 posts to this long running, very redundant topic.
Today, I received a CPR repro PF for "Paragon" (after waiting 5 1/2 years after signing up for it.
Was a huge reminder of the artistry and quality produced by Stu and the CPR team. They didn't release it until it was "just right".
Too bad Stern is unwilling to spend an extra $50-$100 for better PF plywood (would solve many problems...warping, graining, cratering). I bet if they offered CPR quality plywood as a $200 upgrade on a Premium/LE, most people would opt-in just to make sure they didn't have to deal with all the BS in this topic!
[quoted image]

I see a dimple

#6316 61 days ago
Quoted from nicoy3k:

I see a dimple

Beats a Stern crater.

#6317 61 days ago
Quoted from Mike_J:

Beats a Stern crater.

Just wait till a screw a post in it

#6318 61 days ago
Quoted from snaroff:

Can't believe I've made 101 posts to this long running, very redundant topic.
Today, I received a CPR repro PF for "Paragon" (after waiting 5 1/2 years after signing up for it.
Was a huge reminder of the artistry and quality produced by Stu and the CPR team. They didn't release it until it was "just right".
Too bad Stern is unwilling to spend an extra $50-$100 for better PF plywood (would solve many problems...warping, graining, cratering). I bet if they offered CPR quality plywood as a $200 upgrade on a Premium/LE, most people would opt-in just to make sure they didn't have to deal with all the BS in this topic!
[quoted image]

Yep, this is why I dont understand Stern. Surely by now they understand a huge portion of the market want quality, not just something expendable and thrown on route. I would wager to say, and i should probably not say it, but give a buyer and option for an upgraded PF on a pin, and they would pay double Sterns cost, and lower warranty requirements. Seems so easy?

#6319 61 days ago
Quoted from Roostking:

Yep, this is why I dont understand Stern. Surely by now they understand a huge portion of the market want quality, not just something expendable and thrown on route. I would wager to say, and i should probably not say it, but give a buyer and option for an upgraded PF on a pin, and they would pay double Sterns cost, and lower warranty requirements. Seems so easy?

Stern has a months long order backlog if the rumors can be believed. They really have no motivation to change, as what they are doing is working very well for their bottom line. Pinheads are still going to buy their games, flaws and all. Once another competitor pulls enough market share from Stern to cause Stern to have to consider cutting down their production quantities and staff head counts, you MIGHT see a new focus on quality. Until then, expect more of the same.

#6320 61 days ago
Quoted from JodyG:

Stern has a months long order backlog if the rumors can be believed

Only because of COVID production disruption.

But you’re right, they’ve got no reason to change.

The conspiracy theorist would say that in a monopoly market, a manufacturer could gradually reduce quality to create an artificial market for an “upgraded” option, such as a “premium Playfield”. But in sterns case I think it’s pure and simple cost cutting greed.

#6321 61 days ago
Quoted from JodyG:

Stern has a months long order backlog if the rumors can be believed. They really have no motivation to change, as what they are doing is working very well for their bottom line. Pinheads are still going to buy their games, flaws and all. Once another competitor pulls enough market share from Stern to cause Stern to have to consider cutting down their production quantities and staff head counts, you MIGHT see a new focus on quality. Until then, expect more of the same.

This is exactly right.....they won't change until the market forces them to do so....listen I'm happy that people buy these games sight unseen, and with all the quality issues. That way I have the opportunity to pick up a nice used one....

#6322 61 days ago
Quoted from PtownPin:

This is exactly right.....they won't change until the market forces them to do so....listen I'm happy that people buy these games sight unseen, and with all the quality issues. That way I have the opportunity to pick up a nice used one....

There’s a person selling a HUO tmnt le and he wrapped it up in plastic saying original purchaser pulled out. I kinda chuckled thinking maybe hiding a issue?

#6323 61 days ago
Quoted from Multiballmaniac1:

There’s a person selling a HUO tmnt le and he wrapped it up in plastic saying original purchaser pulled out. I kinda chuckled thinking maybe hiding a issue?

The "issue" is being a Stern

-1
#6324 61 days ago

a "premium" playfield option may be the worst idea I've ever heard.

#6325 61 days ago

Do you think this will create a two tiered resell value on the TMNT? The price would have to be significantly lower for a used, playfield print issue TMNT for me to consider... Like half price or less lower (than a used proper print TMNT).

#6326 61 days ago
Quoted from nicoy3k:

a "premium" playfield option may be the worst idea I've ever heard.

Worst idea you've ever heard? I guess you don't get out much?

Let me see...you think it's a bad idea because? Everyone will opt for the "premium" PF and it will raise prices $200?

Or...you think the current PF's are "good enough"?

#6327 61 days ago
Quoted from jonesjb:

Do you think this will create a two tiered resell value on the TMNT? The price would have to be significantly lower for a used, playfield print issue TMNT for me to consider... Like half price or less lower (than a used proper print TMNT).

Dream on.
+/- 200 euro/dollar difference.

#6328 60 days ago

if I could pay $200 more and not have to have spare underpants when I unbox I'd bite any pinball manufacturers hand off.

Lots of hate for Stern but they are no worse than any of the other manufacturers.

Neil.

11
#6329 60 days ago
Quoted from NeilMcRae:

if I could pay $200 more and not have to have spare underpants when I unbox I'd bite any pinball manufacturers hand off.
Lots of hate for Stern but they are no worse than any of the other manufacturers.
Neil.

It’s not about hating just on Stern?
JJP & Spooky quickly corrected their playfield issues and Stern hasn’t.

#6330 60 days ago
Quoted from Pinballnewb01:

Dream on.
+/- 200 euro/dollar difference.

Well in that case for $200 more, I would pass on the defective playfield and just buy one with the good art. It'd have to be half price for me to consider the defective playfield.

#6331 60 days ago
Quoted from snaroff:

Let me see...you think it's a bad idea because? Everyone will opt for the "premium" PF and it will raise prices $200?
Or...you think the current PF's are "good enough"?

Or maybe not everyone believes Stern can just flip the "kick ass quality" switch.

#6332 60 days ago
Quoted from TheLaw:

Or maybe not everyone believes Stern can just flip the "kick ass quality" switch.

They dont want to.

#6333 60 days ago
Quoted from TheLaw:

Or maybe not everyone believes Stern can just flip the "kick ass quality" switch.

Purchasing better wood (like CPR does) isn't very complex. Stern is the most capable pinball manufacturer on the planet. The PF issues that piss people off are the result of cost cutting. People pay up for LE's and don't get anything for the huge up-charge...paying up for vastly better PF wood just makes business sense. Sure, it would be great if Stern was able to upgrade the wood and eat the difference, but that ain't happening...

#6334 60 days ago
Quoted from snaroff:

Purchasing better wood (like CPR does) isn't very complex...

So this has been proven to be a cheaper wood leading to these issues?

#6335 60 days ago

A $200 upgrade gives stern a cop out for shitty playfield quality on their regular models. This hobby is already expensive enough to have games with justifiably shitty playfields for thousands of dollars. Make no mistake about it, the “regular” playfield would be of significantly lower quality of what you get today. It’s not about cheap wood, sorry it’s not, don’t see how it would be for clear coat issues. New sterns don’t dimple more than CGC or JJP games... at least not that I have noticed. The clear coat issues are obviously a process error from not letting the playfields cure especially games manufactured in the summer.

#6336 60 days ago
Quoted from TheLaw:

So this has been proven to be a cheaper wood leading to these issues?

I have no proof, but believe this to be the root cause (based on conversations with smart people that know the biz).

Stern knows how much they pay for their PF plywood and what thickness/density they are paying for. They know precisely if/when the material changed...I don't.

As I've said in previous posts, the wood in my LOTR/ACDC/MET is far superior to the wood in all my recent Sterns since 2015 (starting roughly with KISS).

#6337 60 days ago
Quoted from romulusx:

JJP & Spooky quickly corrected their playfield issues and Stern hasn’t.

Im sorry, did either company ever isolate and confirm how they’ve cleared up the issue?
Pun intended - but serious.

Those WOZYBR were still pooling last time I saw them. Maybe I missed the response.

#6338 60 days ago
Quoted from nicoy3k:

A $200 upgrade gives stern a cop out for shitty playfield quality on their regular models. This hobby is already expensive enough to have games with justifiably shitty playfields for thousands of dollars. Make no mistake about it, the “regular” playfield would be of significantly lower quality of what you get today. It’s not about cheap wood, sorry it’s not, don’t see how it would be for clear coat issues. New sterns don’t dimple more than CGC or JJP games... at least not that I have noticed. The clear coat issues are obviously a process error from not letting the playfields cure especially games manufactured in the summer.

Quoted from snaroff:

I have no proof, but believe this to be the root cause (based on conversations with smart people that know the biz).
Stern knows how much they pay for their PF plywood and what thickness/density they are paying for. They know precisely if/when the material changed...I don't.
As I've said in previous posts, the wood in my LOTR/ACDC/MET is far superior to the wood in all my recent Sterns since 2015 (starting roughly with KISS).

This is a long but informative post from Mike at CPR about the type of wood used at CPR and other manufacturers. This may be why modern Stern's are dimpling more severely and having more quality issues (chipping) than games made 20 years ago.

Just think about it. Stern has raised prices for years, quality has gone down, and yet for around $50 (or less) per game they could make a playfield at CPR's level of quality. It's disappointing and is complete BS considering today's prices.

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/cpr-playfield-preorders-are-meaningless?tq=&tu=CPR

"Guys;

I have to jump in here as well, on four issues. The first was the Xenon PFs that we ran out of last year. The Xenon's I cut were in no way shape or form ever going to satisfy the entire interest but at the time I had the wood and inserts for a very limited number of PFs. I decided that rather than idle the CNC and layoff the guys it made more since to actually make the PFs I had materials for at the time. The rest of the material had been ordered but the lead times on our materials can be HUGE! It just made since to keep everyone employed and the machines working while new supplies were on route.

The second point I have to comment on is our wood. I absolutely believe that our wood is by FAR the best in the world. We have had many suppliers over the years and in bad times have been forced to use the same wood as the other PF manufacturer uses all the time and let me tell you that doing so is our last resort. Playfield wood over the decades has often been whatever was available to the manufacturers. Many PFs especially in the 70s and 80s PFs used three layers of thick cheap filler wood with two thin layers of maple on the faces, something you could buy at your local building supply only with thicker face veneers. For decades most of the better playfield wood came from North American Plywood near Chicago. It used sweet gum as its filler cores and .040" face veneers. But in 2008 in the downturn they liquidated their custom plywood mill and everyone was scrambling to find wood, even Stern. We then shifted to Marion Plywood from Wisconsin who made two very good orders for us before they shifted their glues to a more green product that warped like crazy. We even tried a Russian Baltic Birch that had custom maple veneers glued to it. It was expensive and unsuitable for several reasons. Finally, the current supplier for Stern contacted us and offered to make our wood. This was several years ago now and we couldn't have been happier as they work directly with us to produce the very best CUSTOM wood you can buy ANYWHERE! Their standard wood for Stern is a good one side panel with 3 layers of white ash and a 0.048" face veneers. After many consultations with their tech guys we came up with what I know is the best playfield wood in the world. We use the same basic setup as Stern, 3 layers of white ash cores then we use 4 layers of maritime hard maple BUT we increased the thickness of the two face veneers by 64% to get a nominal face thickness of 0.075". These huge and thick ONE piece veneers are crazy expensive and we always get this top grade veneer on BOTH sides of your PF. This alone added $12 to the cost of each panel vs just using a second grade veneer on the bottom like Stern does. There's nothing wrong with the way Stern does it, as they just refuse any board they want and since they are so close to the mill, the mill just picks it up with the next load and credits them. We however are a $4000 freight bill away so that won't work. We pay a lot extra to get the very best wood they can produce right off the start. You get a much nicer product and a much denser and tougher PF. This wood is 25% heavier for the same size panel as our old wood and nearly a third heavier as Baltic Birch which some other playfield manufacturers use. I would love to use cheaper wood like some others do, after all why would I pay $12.50/sqft landed when I can get birch at less than $2.00sqft? We use the best densest hardest custom wood we can get because we think its worth it and we always try to make the very best product we can.

There are other point is that we intentionally make three levels of quality. Wow, really? We always try to make perfect playfields, every single time but in the past we ALWAYS did full spot color silkscreens which meant that each and every color layer is individually vectored with trapping layers built and silk screened one color at a time, one on top of the other. 14 colors means 14 trips through the screen press. 14! Even the slightest misalignment in any single layer of the normal 12-14 color process means the final product isn't a gold anymore. Its wood, a living surface so if the ink doesn't lay down into every nook and cranny of every square mm of the grain then its not a gold. If a single piece of dust get in the screen and makes its way into the print which is very hard to prevent then its really not a gold anymore. To screen press a playfield we could never do more than about 1 color a day just due to the logistics of cleaning the ink you just used out of the screen trying to save what you can, then removing the screen and washing it with cleaner and paper towels, then once the ink is out, rinsing and then using a stripper to remove the image from the screen, then rinsing, then bleaching the screen to remove all traces of the previous image, rinsing, then drying the screen. Then you have to coat the screen with a photosensitive liquid and let that dry. Then you lay on your full size and expensive direct contact positive and expose the whole thing to a powerful UV light, then immediately wash the screen once more to expose the image which means a third drying of the screen! Then mount it and align it precisely to the previous image on the screen press, which always involves a few trial and error hits on test prints. Add in a cleaned and sharpened squeegee and print your single color...... now repeat this process for each and every color on the playfield. Any misalignment at all, even as small as 1/64"in ANY layer and you may not have a gold, any mark from handing and small dropout of ink, and deep grain that the ink didn't get to and you may not have a gold anymore. Screen printing is many many times harder to do than printing it digitally. Producing artwork for screen printing is horrendously more difficult than prepping something for a digital print. We are very lucky that we have years worth of vectored artwork that can fairly easily be converted for digital use to be used on our big flatbed but you can't go the other way. If you printed 100 PFs and have 10 that are not perfect you had no choice but to sell them, hence silvers and bronze. It could take you as long as 2 weeks to reprint those 10 PFs. Now if you are doing these on a digital printer you have eliminated ANY chance of a misalignment because its a single flat image not 12-14 images laid on top of one another, the printer is spraying, so surface imperfections are easily covered and there is no screen to get contaminated. So for screen printing, since the artwork is many times more complex in comparison and the printing method is many times more complex its no wonder that we didn't always get 100% gold. Of course if you have something go sideways on a digital print it takes but minutes to sand the ink off and clean it up and run it through the printer once again, $8 in inks costs versus basically spending two weeks trying to rescreen a few seconds. But now that we have the same tech as others we can also fairly easily reprint an error so there will be much fewer silver and bronzes in our future.

Making the right number of PFs for everyone is more art than anything else. Playfields are crazy expensive to make and the production costs are all up front. In some cases royalties and licensing alone can cost as high as 25% of the full retail value of the PF, do some quick math and figure out the size of the check you'd have to write to cover that on 100 pfs!! Inserts can cost $25-$100 per PF due to minimum requirements of the molders. You can figure out our wood costs from above. Add in the costs of 2 CNCs, 2 laser cutters, a silk screen operation, a huge UV flatbed etc.... now figure that 50% of the guys who signed up don't buy!! In the case of Corvette PFs we had 75% of people who signed up didn't purchase as they promised! Have two or three of these happen in a row and anyone would become gun shy real quick or we risk losing our homes! I tried deposits when I first started this and it was a nightmare, lately we have on rare occasions used them again with much more success so maybe that's a possibility but truthfully making smaller numbers is the safest thing to do. Using the digital system instead of silk screening makes much more sense and having the ability to digitally reprint our screen printed seconds may get rid of them almost entirely.

Making PFs is complex, silk screening playfields is stoopid complex and expensive in the very small numbers we make but we do it because we love it.

#6339 60 days ago

I spoke to our distributor here in NZ yesterday and discussed the recent printing issues. He rang Stern direct, who advised that they only use 1 manufacturer for their playfields. I have no reason to doubt our distributor, he has held a close relationship with Stern for many years. I thought this was useful information to pass on but I guess take it with a grain of salt. He also told me that their next cornerstone release is 2 weeks away, didn't know the theme

15
#6340 60 days ago
Quoted from Esoteric_rt:

He also told me that their next cornerstone release is 2 weeks away,

Problem solved!
052B5B77-6645-4994-9481-49E712337BC0.gif

#6341 60 days ago
Quoted from Roostking:

Yep, this is why I dont understand Stern. Surely by now they understand a huge portion of the market want quality, not just something expendable and thrown on route. I would wager to say, and i should probably not say it, but give a buyer and option for an upgraded PF on a pin, and they would pay double Sterns cost, and lower warranty requirements. Seems so easy?

Offering an upgraded playfield option would be admitting that the current playfields have problems, and I don't think they want to do that.

#6342 60 days ago

Pinballers are junkies and stern is the dealer. When your client base is hooked there no need to increase the quality of your product. In fact, might as well decrease the quality to increase the bottom line. The junkies will still buy it anyways.

#6343 60 days ago
Quoted from captainadam_21:

Pinballers are junkies and stern is the dealer. When your client base is hooked there no need to increase the quality of your product. In fact, might as well decrease the quality to increase the bottom line. The junkies will still buy it anyways.

I quit cold turkey. I am good now. Ain’t buying shit.

#6344 60 days ago
Quoted from snaroff:

Purchasing better wood (like CPR does) isn't very complex. Stern is the most capable pinball manufacturer on the planet. The PF issues that piss people off are the result of cost cutting. People pay up for LE's and don't get anything for the huge up-charge...paying up for vastly better PF wood just makes business sense. Sure, it would be great if Stern was able to upgrade the wood and eat the difference, but that ain't happening...

Stop....your making too much sense....

#6345 60 days ago
Quoted from seenev:

Offering an upgraded playfield option would be admitting that the current playfields have problems, and I don't think they want to do that.

Ding ding ding!!!

This is 100% the case. Do you really think Stern would say "hey give us $200 more on your $6,000 purchase to ensure it doesn't look like crap or have the artwork fall off after 15 plays?". It's exponentially easier to just say nothing, have their customers play the playfield lottery, and take the money to the bank.

#6346 60 days ago

I agree that playfield quality levels is an absurd idea. I can understand different artwork, but not integral parts of the machine. That's just turning a problem into a money-making opportunity, at the expense of the end product, and everyone should be vehemently against such ideas.

Stern gets away with poor QA because their customers accept it, plain and simple. A business is in business to make money; unless they start to see significant lost revenues due to these QA issues, nothing will change.

#6347 60 days ago
Quoted from seenev:

Offering an upgraded playfield option would be admitting that the current playfields have problems, and I don't think they want to do that.

While I didnt actually intend this. I dont think Stern would have to admit to anything. They could just say they are delivering a better pinball experience with better PF wood, while understanding that operators may not care about it, so they are giving us more choices!!!

It actually blows my mind that they wont use CPR pf and charge the customer $50 more. Stern seems like they just think one title at a time(I know they dont, but for how big they are in the pin world, you would think they would have a longer term vision). Maybe they are that close to bankruptcy?

#6348 60 days ago
Quoted from Yoko2una:

Ding ding ding!!!
This is 100% the case. Do you really think Stern would say "hey give us $200 more on your $6,000 purchase to ensure it doesn't look like crap or have the artwork fall off after 15 plays?". It's exponentially easier to just say nothing, have their customers play the playfield lottery, and take the money to the bank.

If Stern's Cost of Goods increased by $200 for a dramatically better/harder chunk of wood, then a manufacturer usually expects at least 6X-8X return at the retail level. So the $200 increase in materials cost would translate to an additional $1200-1600 in retail price. Doing the math backwards reveals a Retail $7000 pinball machine costs about $1200 (in parts) to make in their worse case scenerio, but could be closer to $875 if they are really aggressive. (Then add their assembly/manufacturing labor costs to get their total investment per machine. In this playfield case, changing material would not change labor, so it is just the markup shown above).

So, the diabolical brains here would then ask the question, "So what AM I getting for the difference in cost between the PREMIUM and LE Editions?". Seems like a bunch of vanity stuff, with little actual cost of goods. But then again, the limited edition certificate, the signature of the author, the exclusive club nature of LE, and the powder coatings ARE valuable to some deep collectors which is why the 500 LEs fly off the shelves...

Last question: Would the LE buyers pay an ADDITIONAL $1200-1600 (at list price) on top of the current LE pricing to get a harder more robust playfield?

#6349 60 days ago
Quoted from Roostking:

While I didnt actually intend this. I dont think Stern would have to admit to anything. They could just say they are delivering a better pinball experience with better PF wood, while understanding that operators may not care about it, so they are giving us more choices!!!
It actually blows my mind that they wont use CPR pf and charge the customer $50 more. Stern seems like they just think one title at a time(I know they dont, but for how big they are in the pin world, you would think they would have a longer term vision). Maybe they are that close to bankruptcy?

I think you have to consider it in context of the pinball community. Playfield issues are a huge point of contention lately. Many people are unhappy, and then there are the people who try not to think about it or care about it and still buy games... But how many of those people will suddenly start caring when Stern tacitly admits that their playfields are cheap and defective, but that you can get a decent playfield for even more money? Admitting that they cheap out on the most important part of a machine and then trying to use that to extort even more money from customers would not go over well...

But then again, we're all stupid. They're doing topper dlc now, everyone is outraged, and they can't keep them in stock. For my part, I canceled accessory orders from Stern when I found my playfield was chipping. But most people just keep on buying. The funny thing is, when I canceled my order, they were like "have you talked to your distributor about your issues?" I have talked to my distributor now... More than 3 weeks ago, and I'm still waiting to hear what Stern's official response is. It's like they say "Oh... You have problems? Why didn't you tell us?" but you tell them and then they just ignore you.

#6350 60 days ago
Quoted from seenev:

I think you have to consider it in context of the pinball community. Playfield issues are a huge point of contention lately. Many people are unhappy, and then there are the people who try not to think about it or care about it and still buy games... But how many of those people will suddenly start caring when Stern tacitly admits that their playfields are cheap and defective, but that you can get a decent playfield for even more money? Admitting that they cheap out on the most important part of a machine and then trying to use that to extort even more money from customers would not go over well...
But then again, we're all stupid. They're doing topper dlc now, everyone is outraged, and they can't keep them in stock. For my part, I canceled accessory orders from Stern when I found my playfield was chipping. But most people just keep on buying. The funny thing is, when I canceled my order, they were like "have you talked to your distributor about your issues?" I have talked to my distributor now... More than 3 weeks ago, and I'm still waiting to hear what Stern's official response is. It's like they say "Oh... You have problems? Why didn't you tell us?" but you tell them and then they just ignore you.

This is why they just need to use CPR playfields and be done with it. If they have to tack on $50 to the price to cover the cost, so be it. Thats not admitting anything, thats just making production line changes. But they wont, cause Stern doesnt care.

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