(Topic ID: 234757)

Is it normal for clearcoat to hairline-crack on a new playfield?

By TheDrewster

8 months ago

Topic Stats

  • 9 posts
  • 5 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 8 months ago by PanzerFreak
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders


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#1 8 months ago

Apologies if this is one of those dead-horse-beating questions, but all the info I could find regarding clear coat issues typically talked about raised inserts and whatnot. That isn't what I am experiencing.

This is a CPR Addams Family Gold playfield that I have begun to assemble today. I purchased this playfield back in summer of last year. After spending some time installing the T nuts, I have begun to see that the clear coat is cracking near the inserts and between holes. The "Lite Adv. X" is cracked to the point where I can catch it with my fingernail. I am unsure if I simply didn't see it when I picked it up or if this occurred after I began installing the T nuts, but this is only my second playfield swap, and I don't remember this happening with my Bride of PinBot.

I am not a super picky person. I just don't know if I should expect this to get worse over time. This is NOT a dig at CPR or anything, simply asking if this is normal to occur. If it's normal, I can live with it.

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#2 8 months ago

From my experience, cracks like that can develop from t-nut installation depending on how they were installed. Especially where you have a nut being installed between two close holes like you see in the sling area. The risk is increased if the pf isnt laid flat on a firm surface (for example installing on a rotisserie).

I installed a couple first and noticed a crack. I know it was from me hammering the t-nut in and i was aware of what could happen and thought i was being cautious. Live and learn... It was between two holes maybe a half inch apart. Thats when i made up a rig with some hardwood with sharp edges sanded off, and some rubber to protect the clear side. Then used some steel washers to distribute the load and drew the t-nut up from the bottom with a bolt. I missed one t-nut and realized it after the pf was partially populated and used this method on a rotisserie, and had no issues. This takes longer of course but is the lowest risk imo. Incedently the pf in question was not a CPR so it can happen with any repro or restalled pf using hard clear coats.

When you get to the topside, be careful as well when you install screws. Need to remove the clear from around the hole using a dremmel (check out Ron Kruzman’s kit) or sharp drill bit so the threads dont grab hold and pull the clear up.

#3 8 months ago

Btw i enjoy your Youtube channel.

#4 8 months ago

You may not want to hear this but the PF was created beside the ocean and you live in the desert. Dehydrated wood and applied force with the T-Nuts are not your friend. The cracks suck, sorry to hear about it!!!

#5 8 months ago

I had the playfield laying face-down on a thick towel over a solid oak coffee table, hammering the T-nuts in. I thought I was being careful enough. Oh well, live and learn! I don't do these often, and it'll still look great when I am done. A lot of the cracks around the holes will be hidden by the posts anyway.

If others learn from my mistakes, I'll still call that a win.

#6 8 months ago

Link to youtube channel?

#8 8 months ago

Same here. I had the pf on my workbbench with an automotive type carpet and used a deadblow hammer. I know i caused my crack as the pf was perfect before i started. Luckily hidden under plastics but still a piss off considering i was (i thought) being very careful. From now on i’ll only start t-nut with deadblow to sink the tangs, then draw the rest in with a bolt making sure to distribute the pressure over a large area. Stole the idea off of Pinball Mike D’s moster bash retoration series but i think he’s pulled them. Or at least i couldn’t find the vids anymore.

#9 8 months ago

Here's a post from Bryan Kelly about a DIY t-nut tool, works great.

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