Quoted from snaroff:
Sure...your analysis is all "good", but consider this:
When CPR sells it's PF's (I've owned a few over the years), it "grades" them as Bronze/Silver/Gold (and prices them accordingly). Love this scrutiny over their manufacturing process!
When Stern get's a PF from it's supplier, many NIB defects show up fairly quickly during manufacturing. In an ideal world, Stern would stop production and send the defective PF back to the supplier. The reason they don't is time-to-market...they need to ship these games to earn revenue. So...the PF manufacturer isn't "punished" for the crappy job.
I recently built a house from a very large "production" builder that allocates ~5 months to build a pretty substantial home (which is really fast...should take 9 months IMHO). A simple example/issue is poorly installed sheet rock that isn't level. We had some fancy tile installed over the misshapen wall that was a joke. You ask yourself why a tile installer would install expensive tile over a wavy wall? (which obviously impacted the aesthetics of the tile installation). The answer is everyone is on a schedule and there aren't enough foreman to check everyone's work. Even if the foreman noticed the issue, chances are he would let it go since he/she is graded on completing the home in 5 months! (INDEPENDENT OF QUALITY). "Quality" is someone else's job Builders simply hope you don't notice the lousy work. After I purchased my home, I had 9 months of fixes (almost all can be traced back to inadequate time to do the right job). I spoke with many of the sub-contractors who were often very blunt about the pressures they are under.
Unfortunately, manufacturing in this country isn't as respected as it use to be. Sad.
Stern started using temp workers in 2007-2008 to build product on the lines. IJ and up iirc. Machines came out pretty good despite some hiccups in assembly.
Issues we are seeing now are due to newer tech ( cc and pf printing) but also from cost cutting or I should say time cutting along with cost. Examples: node boards. Cost and time cutting. Less wiring and (supposedly) improved repair time. Worked out poorly.
Cabinet retainers. Pure cost. Splitting wood. Pure cost. Worked out poorly.
Heavier dimpling quicker on pf’s. Wood not being aged correctly along with different suppliers. Worked out poorly.
Now art and pf wear nib? Seriously?
Short term viability at long term cost. I wouldn’t buy ANY nib at 1/2 cost today.