(Topic ID: 192121)

PBL Aluminum Flipper bats long term reviews?

By John_I

3 years ago

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  • 122 posts
  • 41 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 16 days ago by InsideOutlane
  • Topic is favorited by 13 Pinsiders


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#6 3 years ago

I'm no long time expert like many of you here, but I like them. They hit hard. The ball moves fast. I use Superbands. I suppose this setup is less "rubbery" but I like them better than the plastic flippers and rubber bands they replaced.

8 months later
#12 2 years ago
Quoted from pezpunk:

Anyone know if PBL plans to get these back in stock, or if there are any alternatives available?
As for a long-term review: I've been using the aluminum bats on my STTNG for several years now, and I really like them. The added weight doesn't seem to slow the ball down any -- I have no trouble making any of the shots on the game. It whips around the beta quadrant ramp just fine. Every advanced maneuver seems pretty much just as doable as on a plastic bat, but I'm no expert in that department (although i was a top-4 seed in the B-division finals at Pinburgh last year, so i don't totally suck).
I'd like to add aluminum bats to a Demo Man I just picked up, but I can't find them anywhere.
oh on a semi-related note: before i switched to aluminum, i went through about 3 or 4 sets of translucent flipper bats in a year. Every single one cracked badly after a few months of home use. They look cool, but they just don't hold up (at least not to the STTNG coils).

I love these aluminum bats. I have 5 pins loaded with them. They hit hard and handle just fine for me, too. I went to buy more at Pinball Life and no dice. PBL says the machinist got tired of making them; I figure the machinist is holding out for more money. At only $10.00 each retail I can see where the machinist might have felt shortchanged. Anyway, according to who I talked to at PBL, there will not be anymore. I'm majorly bummed about it.

#15 2 years ago
Quoted from pinballlife:

Things have changed! These are back in production and we should have them back in stock in a few weeks.

Thanks man. Come back here and tell us when they are ready. I need 4 of them. I also need to trade back the 4 white plastics ones I just bought from you; Unused and brand spanking new.

EDIT: Is the old price returning as well? Or is a bump happening?

1 year later
#18 11 months ago
Quoted from Zitt:

Did these ever go back in stock?
I haven't seen them when I've went and looked recently.
PinballNews.com did a story on some alternate bats:
but at 90euros for a pair; I just can't.

PBL was selling them for 9.95 and then they went away. And then they were brought back for $12.95. I should have loaded up. They are gone again. Something with the machinist making them wanted more money, I think.

I have them on all my pins. They hit hard and fast.

#22 11 months ago
Quoted from pinballlife:

We can probably make more, but I'm not sure how many people will buy $15 flipper bats.
These are machines from solid aluminum.

Is there a minimum order quantity that must be considered?

#29 11 months ago
Quoted from volkdrive:

I know I’d be in, the look goes well with many titles. Maybe not enough exposure that they were available?

You might be right about the exposure but as in all things there are always some negative Nancy’s offering up negative vibes saying the are sluggish or don’t hit hard enough. It is also BS. Get your flippers and flipper switches adjusted correctly and they kick like mules.

#33 11 months ago
Quoted from pinballlife:

I think we need to make around 250 at a time to keep them even somewhat in line, price-wise.
As I recall, it took a couple years to go through that quantity last time we ran them.

I would be in for 4 of them. In the great scheme of things that is not very many.

What I like about them is, while they work very well, I could paint them any color I wanted. And if I got tired of a color I could always paint them another color.

#35 11 months ago
Quoted from Deezer5150:

Having never seen these but liking the look in the pic up there I can say I’d be in for 10, even if it was only to stockpile them for later use.

Here you go.

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#37 11 months ago
Quoted from slochar:

Robocop's flippers are so strong you posted it twice

pinside and pictures do not always work smoothly.

Quoted from slochar:

$15 seems cheap for these if it's a block of solid Aluminum - I guess the machinist making them might be cutting the blocks in some way to minimize waste? Or it the shaft separately installed like on the normal flippers?

Considering what everything is costing this day and age, $15.00 is a screaming deal. However, I need 4 for my Big Game; That's $60.00 worth of flippers. But the plastic Stern flippers are priced at $7.00-$10.00 each which takes some sting out of the extra costs.

I'm not sure how the machinist makes his cuts, but these flippers are hog outs from a block of solid aluminum i.e they are hollow on the bottom side to reduce weight. A steel shaft is pressed in from the bottom and has a tight fit. The machinist knows his stuff; They are of quality manufacture.

They are a little heavier than the plastic flippers but the flipper coils have no problem with making powerful hits. For anybody installing these flippers I highly recommend a fresh shop job on your flippers. If you install these and leave in crappy worn out coil sleeve and a mushroomed coil plunger you probably will not like the results. And then you will come on the board and trash them as being lousy performers.

Quoted from slochar:

Not a fan of changing the profile on the classic sterns though to the thinner one, but hey, it's your game, do what you like to it.

I understand. It is not factory but it is easily reversible.

2 months later
#48 8 months ago

I really like mine. I could use 10 more. Wow. A $150.00 worth of flippers.

And Wow again. I have four new of the Williams style. I never thought to check for flex. They flex. I would like to see what that flex looks like with s slo-mo camera.

Yes. I could use 10 more of the metal bats.

3 months later
#52 5 months ago

I would buy 10 of them and pay in advance.

#54 5 months ago
Quoted from John_I:

Yes, I would love to buy some.

How many is "some". We ain't gonna get PL to act unless there are some real numbers.

Right now, we are at the 10 I said I would buy.

Anybody else want to step up?

#56 5 months ago
Quoted from John_I:

Terry said one of the reasons he stopped selling them is because the price was going to climb probably to $15 per bat. Assuming that price, I would take at least six.

OK. We are at 16. But I don't know what the magic number is to incent Terry to make them again.

#59 5 months ago
Quoted from ToucanF16:

Ready to buy 30 bats here. Make them and people will come!

We are up to 54.

But 15 sets? 30 bats? That's a lot of jack. $450.00 @ $15.00 each. You sure?

#64 4 months ago
Quoted from evileye:

I assumed he meant 30 individual bats, 15 sets. That’s what I meant for me. I need 4 sets.

Corrected. Thank you.

You are in for 8 each. Pinball Life did not sell them as sets before. We are now at 62 bats.

#65 4 months ago

62 plus

Quoted from moto_cat:

I’m in for 2 pairs..

Quoted from Hypercoaster:

I'd be in for at least 3 pairs.

+ 4
+ 6
= 72

What if Terry would want pay in advance before he pulled the trigger? Would you still be interested and willing to pay up before hand? I would have no problem with paying an outfit like PL in advance. What about you?

I am asking about this advance stuff because we may really have to kiss Terry's ass for him to tool up for another run.

#69 4 months ago
Quoted from cottonm4:

62 plus

+ 4
+ 6
= 72
What if Terry would want pay in advance before he pulled the trigger? Would you still be interested and willing to pay up before hand? I would have no problem with paying an outfit like PL in advance. What about you?
I am asking about this advance stuff because we may really have to kiss Terry's ass for him to tool up for another run.

So, 72 bats have moved back down to 62 bats.

3 of us would pre-pay if necessary.

Anybody else?

#74 4 months ago
Quoted from Mbecker:

I'd order a couple

Will you pre-pay?

#75 4 months ago
Quoted from John_I:

Sounds like he could easily sell 100 of them.


Quoted from John_I:

I would pre pay for at least 6 bats depending on the price.

The price that was discussed up above was $15.00. And that is a WAG number.

It looks like the count is up to around 84.

This is about where we were at 6 months ago.

#78 4 months ago
Quoted from EJS:

I’m highly interested but curious to know the mass (weight) of these versus plastic?
Has anyone done a comparison or did I overlook?

I forgot what mine weighed at. There is not that much difference, IMO. All I can tell you is that they are solid as rocks and hit like hammers. You are not going to get any weak and light flipper hits with these.

Maybe someone else has the weight numbers you are looking for.

#94 4 months ago
Quoted from arcademojo:

I wonder how these compare in weight to the older flippers with the metal plate?

Quoted from EJS:

I would hope they are lighter. Those bats I get rid of immediately.

They are probably not lighter. And I don't know if you would want them lighter. The weight they are not does not slow the swing action down. I don't know how much pulling strength an electromechanical coil and plunger have but there is enough pulling strength that the swing action is not affected. My aluminum bats will send the ball all the way to the back of the play field quickly and I think the little bit of extra weight helps. But I don't have any scientific studies to back it up.

1 month later
#103 3 months ago
Quoted from pinballlife:

Yes, they are in production.

Will you announce here when they are in stock?

1 month later
#112 61 days ago
Quoted from cp1610:

Been watching this thread only because i heard of these in a passing conversation in the past. Now that there being made guess I'll get a pair don't want terry stuck with box of flipper bats that people asked for then not sell.

I committed for 10. I'm buying 10. I hope the others who spoke stay true to their word,

#120 59 days ago
Quoted from cottonm4:

I committed for 10. I'm buying 10. I hope the others who spoke stay true to their word,

I do need to qualify what I said. If my memory is correct we all seemed to gravitate to $15.00 per flipper or $30.00 for. a pair. If the price is more than that I may have to adjust my order.

Sort of like going to the big box store to get four 2 X 4's at $2.50 each and when getting to the store, you see that 2 X 4s are now priced at $6.00 each and you buy only one.

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