(Topic ID: 249870)

Continued playfield issues with JJP and Stern

By f3honda4me

6 months ago

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  • Latest reply 3 hours ago by snaroff
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#1008 5 months ago
Quoted from Darscot:

This is very simple mathematics, labour is a major expense especially in America. It would double the cost.

This assumes that the customers labor time is worth zero dollars per hour This solution is always a win for Stern or JJP.

They know from past experiences that this is the panacea that calms the irate customer. Sure you probably won't end up installing it but you'll feel you got some added value from this fiasco. Then if you feel like you can't sell it for what it should be worth you can peddle the PF separately... or offer to throw it in at a higher cost.

Stern did this for me when I bought a last run TSPP and the silkscreen had degraded to the point that there were splotches of paint under the rather nice CC. They warned me the new PF would also have the splotches and that they weren't going to re-do the silkscreen but they'd hand pick me the brightest one they could find.

And they did... Homer's car is almost blazing red in this version. The wood and CC on the original still look brand new but while I was disappointed in the splotches I appreciated having a spare PF that could keep or sell one day.

Probably the only outcome one can expect in this situation. Not ideal and not what you initially paid for but maybe the best that JJP can afford to do. And after seeing patches of bare wood on some of these new PF's... the LEAST they could do frankly.

1 week later
#1562 5 months ago
Quoted from Chambahz:

Because it has been made clear that they DID make some changes. It remains to be seen if all problems are now solved, so we wait optimistically.
(As opposed to taking a conspiracy theory approach and suggesting that their leaked info was intentional and that it came from someone at Stern who thought it would trick everyone into buying games with defective... Good grief man. Get a grip.)

Hmmm... so you missed the hi-res pic of the Elvira PF with the nicely sinking post? Good 'ole hard clear doesn't let things sink right into it like that.

#1575 5 months ago
Quoted from Chambahz:

Nope, I saw that too. But the regular Pinside naysayer/Stern bashers are a little too quick to assume that this was made recently, in my opinion.
From what I've read on here, the first "corrected" playfields were received last Friday? If that's accurate, it's highly likely that the Elvira playfield was made before that. (They had time to complete a video on it, and take press release photos, right?)
I'm just saying that the new playfields are already in Pinsiders homes so let's wait to hear from them to see if the problems are fixed, instead of assuming that they aren't.

Hey I HOPE they have it under control. Just surprised to see it in their own promo pics.

In a perfect world Stern, JJP OR Mirco would pay a big insurance deductible to be able to dump the entire batch. Maybe then write it off as a business expense... but somehow that doesn't seem too likely. But maybe... who knows. They do seem to be finally taking it a little more seriously.

Not sure what this means for all the resellers that have to burn through old stock that they've already paid for though...
maybe these companies have a way to make their dist happy also. You'd think they'd have to.

See how optimistic I am? 'Course I'm a little hammered at the moment

#1644 5 months ago
Quoted from Rum-Z:

Better yet, disassemble it and immediately and put thin washers under all ball guides (unless Stern took the initiative to do it by now).

It seems sometimes with washers you'll just get a bigger spread of CC. Then you really can't hide it. I'm waiting to see a joke pic of a post with a huge three inch metal washer on the bottom.

washer (resized).jpeg
#1810 5 months ago
Quoted from iceman44:

Good answer
And i wouldn't worry about your first Nib pinball purchase with the pictures you are showing. You are in a HUO environment. You'll be fine, enjoy your new game!

Can't beat the HUO environment

jppost (resized).jpeg
#1812 5 months ago
Quoted from bigd1979:

That post design on jp2 is not a good one and needs to be fixed imo

I've never had a post do that to me in 22 years... badly placed or not.

#1814 5 months ago
Quoted from iceman44:

Me either, no chips on any of my pf’s. Maybe I’m not playing them enough
The GB run had some bad ones. Remember KPG?

Boy I sure do... he really did get reamed with that one. Sorta "radicalized" him against the hobby eventually and he disappeared.

Too bad for me too as I liked his TWD mix

2 weeks later
#2562 4 months ago
Quoted from CLEllison:

I'd bet the farm the only reason any progress on the clear coat debacle is happening is due to everyone on this site and the word spreading. It's a sad day in hell when manufacturers have to take it in the financial keister in order to do the right thing instead of just doing it because it's the right thing to do.

Yeah but at least we know they read this site regularly. Look how quick those annoying cartoon inner tubes disappeared from E3 after the outcry over the video. That alone made the display look *much* better and more readable.

#2566 4 months ago
Quoted from romulusx:

Way over the top,now she looks like a cheap slut!

No slut shaming here on PS! I'm sure she's been faithful to Ted all these years.

#2569 4 months ago
Quoted from o-din:

What I'd like to know is who is the quality control inspector on the way out and where is he going?

I heard he has a job waiting at Samsung with their "folding phone" division. Judging from that last aborted launch he should fit right in.

Just in time too as they are planning on a re-launch (if they haven't already).

#2664 4 months ago
Quoted from o-din:

I got the wrong Hawkmoon. Is he your dad?

If so maybe he was in the old psychedelic band Hawkwind. Hey that would fit right in your 70's thread!

2 weeks later
#2779 3 months ago
Quoted from ercvacation:

My JP Premium with a build date of 10/22. Each of the 4 up posts had varying degrees of defects. All are rough. Left in lane has a chip in the clear and missing a bit of paint. The issues have been reported to Stern. Not happy with this.[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

They're going to send you a "kit" which will have some fine sandpaper and some lacquer in nail polish jar. Doubt if that will rise to the somewhat rare populated PF swap.

Push for a blank PF. At least that will add some value and take the sting out of it. Sell it later if you never get around to swapping it.

#2819 3 months ago
Quoted from Who-Dey:

Too late, damage is already done now.

Oh c'mon now... that's one of the very FEW complaints I've ever heard about AP's service. Every other company *wishes* they had such a stellar record.

#2825 3 months ago
Quoted from Who-Dey:

I agree that AP seems to have a pretty good reputation but my point was they already did that to him. The owners of AP I am sure was aware of his issues and they chose to just ignore him so they most likely already burned their bridges with him and I'm sure that just because they have a new guy over their customer service now that they arent just going to be able to win him back.
I'm not saying that AP is a bad company, I have no idea if they are or not. I'm just saying that they he feels like they treated him wrong and screwed him. That leaves a bad taste in most peoples mouths for a long long time. These pinball companies better get their shit together and start treating their customers right or they are going to do under.

Yeah I see your point about losing that customer forever (unless they follow RK's suggestion).

I thought you were making more of a blanket statement about the company's entire track record. My bad.

#2827 3 months ago
Quoted from megaladon:

Thanks. Certainly not trying to badmouth AP. Just offering my experience with contacting them and getting no response or acknowledgement (see original email). I’ve since sold the game but it’s amazing with such high ticket items the customer service seems pretty subpar in my opinion. Stand by your products?[quoted image]

You even offered to pay for some help also. Maybe it ended up in their spam folder? If I ever have a question I always call to get an actual human being on the line. Maybe that's old school but with the amount of emails (with a load of spam) that these companies get I never trust an email to get the same kind of attention.

I forget your original post so maybe you did call them?

#2883 3 months ago
Quoted from Talon2000:

Was told they are no longer doing that.

I was going to say that they will probably still do it but yours didn't meet the amount of damage they require. Sounds nicer (I guess?) just to tell the upset customer they no longer offer that option.

Then I looked back at your pics. Two nice patches of bare wood on a new machine. Sure looked suitably ugly and damaged to me. Yikes. I guess the customer is expected to take it on the chin with these cases.

#2893 3 months ago
Quoted from snaroff:

That's shocking. I'm sure the check wasn't close to 4k. I'd guess "swap comp" would be in the $500-$1000 range...which is certainly better than nothing (and somewhat fair considering many situations). The waste associated with populated PF swaps is huge, since the old PF parts aren't re-useable.

Well the "old" PF parts are actually reusable. That's why they have you send back your populated PF. The mechs, etc are usually in great shape and are ready to go back in the parts bin. These parts aren't like used condoms. Not yet anyways

#2894 3 months ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

It's not about doing a playfield swap. It's about having a NOS playfield to "throw in" on a future sale of the game if someone complains about the playfield in the game that's being sold.
Nobody really cares about these playfields and minor imperfections most people can't or won't notice, it's all about resale. Nobody is swapping their playfields, they are just sitting on the NOS ones they get from Stern. Plus, they "got something outta Stern" which also provides some peace of mind.

I always write this too but people *do* care... to some degree. After dropping 7k you don't want to to see two bare wood patches on your new purchase. Especially if none of your 20 years old machines show any bare wood.

I agree most don't get swapped though... it's a good salve for the unhappy customer.

Here's one of the guys two PF spots...

IM1 (resized).jpg
#2905 3 months ago
Quoted from Extraballz:

No I would say Stern actually sent precedent by giving out populated PF’s in the past well before Jersey Jack ever sent out anything. Stern just used what Jersey Jack did recently to stop giving populated PF’s. What Stern is now saying to customers is “we used to do the right thing but because another company chose to do the wrong thing we will just do that now”. Unreal folks.

I *think* that is exactly what the other guy was saying/inferring. I could be wrong though.

#2961 3 months ago
Quoted from luckymoey:

I’d take good photos of all the pooling and email to Stern Tech Support (P. Powers), and distributor if bought NIB, with a short note requesting resolution to the issue / manufacturing defect. Include that the machine is HUO with the serial #. Also that the heavy pooling indicates delamination that will chip with continued play. Would then call them to discuss a few days later, and continue to follow up regularly and professionally via email.
Have you removed posts and ball guides around the machine to closely inspect for pooling/chipping? If you have heavy pooling one place, I’ll bet you’ll find pooling and possibly some chipping pretty much everywhere when you remove the posts and guides.

Problem is if you start removing some of these sunken posts we now know THAT is when it will most likely chip.

So you'd have to have faith that the new bare wood showing would get Stern moving. If the most they'll do is ship you a blank PF I'm not sure that's worth the trade-off. Depending on how much your time is worth and how long you think you'll keep the machine.

Not being able to move those posts for the life of the machine seems crazy also. Shitty situation indeed.

#2965 3 months ago
Quoted from luckymoey:

I can only talk from my personal experience removing about 50 posts with varying degrees of pooling and the removal process didn't cause any to chip. If there is significant pooling, there is a good chance that movement of the post or guide from ongoing ball impacts will eventually cause chipping. Once the art is delaminated from the wood it's just a "bubble waiting to be popped."

Yeah another guy (actually local to me) has had the same experience so that's good to know. Some people did have problems when they removed a sunken post but you two have shown it's not forgone conclusion.

Happy to hear it.

2 weeks later
#3169 85 days ago
Quoted from Dr-pin:

I recently played an iron maiden at a club.
Fun game to play with lots of nice shots.
No pooling around the posts, but the playfield looked pretty much like the Surface of a golfball.

Don't worry... even these new (sometimes pretty soft) PF's will "even out"

#3176 85 days ago
Quoted from jellikit:

I think the SAM and Whitestar ones are getting close.[quoted image][quoted image]

I'm sure I'll be dead before my Walking Dead ever "evens out". There's some poetry in that I'm sure.

My LOTR started hard... STAYED HARD! The little blue pill of Stern PF's. TSPP also has maintained it's rigidity.

Hey B... Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

1 week later
#3228 77 days ago
Quoted from Tranquilize:

I just sent my second email today, after two months of crickets. Would emails every day do anything?

Any time I've had a problem I CALL them. You'll get someone sympathetic like Chas and he'll ask for pics and that will get the ball rolling. Stern is an old-school kind of business. They figure if you are too unmotivated or timid to actually CALL then your emails will probably end up in the abyss like the other thousand or so they get every single day. They'll figure you should be bugging your "distributor".

They don't exactly have a huge staff dedicated to tracking customer problems so when you call and they hear a REAL person with an issue they are concerned about... you'll get the best results. It may not turn out the way you hope but you won't be ignored.

This isn't Amazon with a dedicated email staff. Just CALL them and be pleasant...because most are nice people that you'll get on the phone. When a machine is new they've sent me several different high priced parts (including a huge ramp and PF)... GRATIS.

Of course one time I also received a baby food jar (no joke) with some gold paint as a solution to my issue so the outcome will vary...lol.

But I've never been ignored.

1 week later
#3338 64 days ago
Quoted from cpr9999:

Check this guys recent post - is that playfield clear acceptable or are my eyes seeing this incorrectly?

Makes sense though... their "solution" to the CC problem was to change *nothing* but then only do ONE spray pass on the PF.
And then take the short cut of simply moving the art away from the posts.

They figure there will not be remotely enough clear then to bunch up anywhere...

Probably not a great long term solution.


#3414 60 days ago
Quoted from imagamejunky:

Unfortunately my brand new JP Premium playfield has problems also. And it has the new playfield design with circles around the posts. Build date 10/21/19. It has 2 areas (as of now) with clear/artwork that has chipped away with bare wood now showing. These are both areas where a metal lane guide was pressed against the playfield, not from posts being hit from a ball.
I made phone calls and sent pictures on Dec 5th to both my distributor and to Stern. Stern is “reviewing” my case and is supposed to get back to me.
I have specifically requested a completely populated playfield. They need to do the right thing here. I personally have purchased 8 Stern pins. (7 premiums, 1 pro). I’ve put thousands of dollars in Stern’s bank account. This is the first time I’ve requested an expensive warranty item. If they don’t give me a populated playfield I will NOT be buying another Stern.

Make sure Stern knows you bought 8 machines and *believes* you when you tell them. Can't hurt. Good luck!

OOOPS posted before I saw your great outcome! You deserved it my friend.


#3615 55 days ago
Quoted from Who-Dey:

There have been people with problems since they started putting on the thinner clearcoat.....far less issues but there are still issues. I have a friend that has a JP2 with a bunch of fish eyes in the clearcoat and ive seen guys playfields with the artwork peeling up off the playfield. The problem i have with it is it just doesnt look as good without the thicker clearcoat and it can be done because other companies are still using thick clearcoat. This problem has not been remedied, only band aided

Yeah and even with the thin CC people are finding their ball guides and other metal pieces sinking into the CC and causing bubbling and cracks. So Stern is not in the clear yet.

See what I did there . I know...


1 week later
#3827 46 days ago
Quoted from wrd1972:

So is it fair to say that pooling and chipping is now under control due to the thinner layer of cc being applied? That was my understanding from reading previous posts.

No. We've seen multiple pics of new games where the metal ball guides screwed down on the clearcoat sink, pool and then crack and chip off with the art.

So the thinner coat is a band aid but the issues can still show up. Raising the metal guides slightly on new games might be a needed preventive step if you're so inclined.

#3867 45 days ago
Quoted from HighVoltage:

My point is really more that there has to be something explaining the variability. If you claim it's just the wood, and the wood is consistent, what explains the variability? I think it's likely numerous factors, including inconsistencies in wood and clear.

Wood is *not* consistent. It's an organic product. That' why I got lucky and was able to return a NIB CV twenty two years ago that had soft wood and was cratering like a lot of these newer PF's. Then I got another CV that was typical of the harder wood that was the majority of PF's produced up until recently.

Despite certain people claiming the "wood hasn't changed" it certainly has. Not just that old growth is gone or too expensive to use but also because companies can pick all kinds of types and grades of wood for PF's to save money. Go to any major plywood supplier and you'll see dozens of variations in grades and types of wood offered.

And please... let's quit thinking that a millimeter of ANY type of clear over a soft surface will magically stop a heavy ball from leaving impressions. Not only is that thought ridiculous but CC is *supposed* to flex with the underlying surface. That's why your car's plastic bumper can take a big hit and pop back to life with the CC intact (though you may find spidering and cracks later on).

If you CC a soft object it will flex to a certain degree as intended for protection. If the surface is hard it doesn't have to.

The newer shinier CC does indeed show off the deeper impressions of the softer wood on *some* (now most?) of these new PF's but are not the cause of the imprints or ALL of us would have dimples evenly across ALL of our inserts. Which certainly isn't the case.

That's my 2 cents worth from someone who has been too OCD about PF's for 20+ years. Refunds available


#3869 45 days ago
Quoted from jellikit:

They had digital cameras back then, pics or it didn't happen.

Unlike nowadays you didn't take pictures of every item in your home, etc. Heck I didn't start to take pictures much at all until my kids came a couple years later and had to buy a decent camera

You CAN however find old posts on RPG with people refusing to believe I actually got a refund for the machine. I was a novice dealing with dist's so I now know how lucky I got. I liked the guy that ran the place... "no problem returning the machine... I hadn't gotten around to running your CC yet". Remember the paper slips they had to submit? I think that's what really saved me.

Of course it was a week later so that guy was apparently super relaxed. He did say he was retiring soon lol.

#3874 45 days ago
Quoted from o-din:

The distributer was probably happy to just be able to get rid of one of those turds nobody seemed to want.

Yeah at full price I dodged a bullet. But then they blew them out at $1700 so I couldn't resist. Still hated the code but then Cameron Silvers came out with a decent update with some wizard modes that gave it some legs. Still hate seeing Pop-a-douche on the backglass though.

#3875 45 days ago
Quoted from jellikit:

RGP! Get it right old man. Unfortunately the pictures I took two decades ago were linked to pages that are long gone...

lol Damn B you are always happy to let me know how old I'm getting. RPG would actually fit better with the acrimony back in the day. No moderators!

Probably not because I'm old either... maybe just dumb. I think I used to screw up the acronym even back then.

#3882 44 days ago
Quoted from o-din:

I don't save shit, especially pictures of rusty old balls. But I still have many older playfields smooth as silk.
Must have been those rusty old balls constantly pounding on them that gives them that glassy look.

That's because with those slow EM's you like to play the ball never gets any air. Just rolls around


1 week later
#3934 36 days ago
Quoted from finman2000:

The magnet too?!?!? I don't think I have seen that yet.

Yeah most TWDs have wear on the soft magnets but that BM must have the softest magnet ever... usually it takes quite a while before it gets some shallow dents but that one does look like it took some buckshot somewhere down the line.

At least the ramp flaps didn't dimple right away like we're now seeing on SThings. That's kinda ugly.

#4035 32 days ago
Quoted from smalltownguy2:

I am in regular communication with them. I've been asked by my distributor and JJP to not discuss my case at this time.
-wonka owner #08742206, play field #105, clear coat case #5107

Ha. So essentially in this case the dist and JJP have you in an NDA situation. The same thing they were trying to negatively portray Goetz for offering.

Personally if he spent the ridiculous bucks on a CE and couldn't get a populated replacement I'd have no problem with him paying 3k less on the "next" CE. It's hardly a sure win for him. The CE isn't worth 3k over the LE in any real world way and then he has to commit to playing russian roulette with the next JJP purchase. Not sure I'd want that deal.

You're gambling when you buy Stern NIB also but it seems like with JJP it's the heavy hitters table. Even more money on the line.

Yes with less hyperbole we know "most" of these machines (from either company) arrive ok. But if you are risk-averse NIB purchases might be something to avoid. Often it's the principle more than the money.

They are essentially telling you that you're stuck with a new product of lesser quality than what others have received for the same money.

For some reason this irritates me.

#4150 30 days ago
Quoted from smalltownguy2:

That is an incorrect assumption. I was simply asked by all parties involved to keep the details of my specific case out of social media, specifically pinside. I signed no paperwork, and I'm under no legal obligation to do anything. I'm simply trying to be nice, that's all.

I didn't assume anything. I stated they put you in an NDA type situation so you won't talk about it. I never said there were any legalities involved.

They're not counting on you being "nice"... they are counting on your hope that your silence will get you a favorable outcome.

I just found it amusing that when a customer suggests the same kind of thing there is outrage.


#4155 30 days ago
Quoted from Genjuro:

I had decent exchanges with Steve, but Shannan is exemplary.
Lloyd, well he is great as we all know. Technically he isnt JJP correct? That's my understanding so I dont really put him in the bucket of being JJP.

They don't call him Lloyd The Great for nothing

#4422 24 days ago
Quoted from 2Fun:

Just got this tonight. JJP never contacted me that it was shipping. I sent them pics of my playfield months ago and never heard back. Until now. I kind of just accepted the fact that I got what I got and had moved on. I do wonder, however, if this one will have the same problems when I do the swap. That would suck, wouldn't it?[quoted image]

The fact it took them so long is a good thing if it means this one comes from a new batch (hopefully).

I suppose you could screw down a post in an inconspicuous painted spot (maybe up at the top) and see how it reacts over the next few weeks.

I bet most of these will end up being sold. Why shouldn't they be? It'll offset the lesser price you'll get when you go to sell your
factory flawed machine.

Good luck with your swap... it'll be a nice project. At least you won't have to staple down the traces going to the pops, etc. They don't still do that do they?


1 week later
#4584 18 days ago
Quoted from romulusx:

Well AFAIK the issues started with a portion of the POTC run and continued with the first run of Wonka’s.At this point Jack called up Mirco and said get your shit together or else!

Actually many WOZ's ended up with stickers being sent out to cover some bad PF art issues. The Hobbit escaped relatively unscathed and DI had some chipping issues. From then on you're right... haven't heard anything bad about the latest Wonka's.

2 weeks later
#4902 2 days ago
Quoted from o-din:

Unless, of course, these are your socks.[quoted image]

Guess I gotta get some these now! Damn it.

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