I appreciate your thoughts! I definitely do not argue with printed warranty periods, and such - Stern did not force me to buy their product, they can set the rules they want. They can also stand behind the quality of their products if they want - or not want to.
The rationale I have building for this particular issue is multi-faceted:
1) It is a relatively new machine with low plays, with new technology, and protections. Seems premature.
2) It isn't a part that in my mind is expected to be normal wear - like playfields, coils, other moving parts.
3) It seems to be an issue that repeats itself in the same manner over and over again from the initial research I'm seeing. And fairly scary when I think of something getting hot enough to melt itself, it bleeds over into a potential safety issue.
Various manufacturers over the years issue recalls, service bulletins, etc. that aim to rectify an issue that was missed during development. I feel that perhaps this might be one of those cases. I have not spoken to Stern yet personally, so I am not sure what remedies they will offer (if any) - just trying to understand the issue as much as I can so I can have an intelligent (and hopefully informed) conversation.