So, due to the flexing and soft playfields on many of the Deadpools out there and the amount of punishing shots and bricked shots to the lane guide, a number of people have noticed flaking/chipping clear/ink at the entrance to the katana shot where the lane guide is literally scratching the finish and/or ink off the playfield.
Cliff makes a great thin metal protector for the front of the lane guide, but after inspecting the Deadpool here, I don't think it would help completely because the one here had scratching in the clear coat along the curve in the lane guide much further back from the actual entrance from the metal flexing slightly when the ball went by, resulting in a white, powdery line and the beginnings of a deep scratch that probably would go through to the wood if left untreated.
So, the approach I took was to remove the guide (which involves much more parts removal than you'd expect, but is pretty straightforward), clean the three holes with rubbing alcohol and dry with a microfiber cloth, apply mylar rings to the three holes, then put a thin washer on the hole closest to the entrance and put the lane guide back. This raises the lane guide a barely perceptable amount off the playfield, preventing damage at the entrance AND on the curve where it was scratching into the clear on ours from flexing.
I took pictures of most of the steps:
Here's the lane guide, and you can see the white powdery line where the guide has begun scratching into the clear from minute flexing as the ball passes over and over:
Being overly cautious, and having seen some nasty pictures of playfields that stuck to the guide as it was pulled up, I put painters tape around the sides and front of the guide to help keep everything in place when it came time to lift the guide up and hopefully prevent any playfield from pulling up with the guide (as I kept pressure on the taped area with one hand while lifting the guide initially away from the playfield with the other hand when I lifted it off later):
You'll need to remove the pop bumper cap and a small plastic trim piece near the Katana exit because a small post is holding the center part of the lane guide in place:
I un-plugged connectors and removed this light board on the bottom to make it easier to remove all the nuts holding the guide:
These are the nuts you're looking for:
When you remove the nut for this mini post, you'll need to have a socket on the bottom of the playfield and another deep socket on the post holding it in place or it will just spin and you can't remove it:
There are two philips screws holding the Katana blade that you need to remove so you can move the Katana blade *slightly* away and let the lane guide come up and out. It's tight, but you can do it without removing the Katana blade entirely:
Here you can see the leading hole with the lane guide removed - looks pretty good, still:
I used a cotton ball soaked in rubbing alcohol to clean the areas around all three holes and then dried with a microfiber cloth so the mylar rings would have a good surface to adhere to:
If you look very carefully you can see the mylar ring now installed at the last hole of the lane guide:
And another installed at the middle hole:
And one installed at the hole at the entrance (note that the "support" angled stainless bracket has to be loosened so you can lift it here if you plan to install mylar rings since this one extends under the front edge of it):
Re-install the lane guide, putting a small stainless washer on the front post before setting it in. When you tighten, don't go crazy on this. This picture is the first one I did, and I crushed the thin washer, bending it. You don't want to do that, so watch as you tighten and stop when you start to get resistance so you don't crush the washer:
Don't forget to put the light board back and plug the connectors in again!
All done with this project? Here's a couple other DIY guides I've made for newer Spike machines:
Are LED lights popping out of your spotlights (not just on Spike machines!)? Make sure they never fall out again:
Have a Stern machine from KISS or after with the softer wood cabinet? Reinforce it to prevent a splitting cab:
Are your Iron Maiden speakers crackling when you crank it up? Fix that with a cheap external amp:
Is your Spike machine occasionally resetting during hectic play, torpedoing your high score runs? This guide to fixing it might be for you:
Do you have a WoZ ECLE and think it's too loud in a quiet room? Replace two fans and make it almost silent:
And here are some other plug and play mods you can just buy:
Iron Maiden Light Tree Mod for colored mode lights:
Metallica F-U-E-L lights bracket:
ColorDMD gasket for Stern machines with the angled speaker panel: