(Topic ID: 48087)

New Star Gazer & Seawitch Playfield Production


By greatwichjohn

7 years ago



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#1 7 years ago

I have all the things lined up to do this project this year, except for a reserve of cash. New 1/2" hard maple A1 grade 4' x 8' sheet using Baltic Birch core. The printer that is doing my glass work will be doing the cnc & uv ink printing for playfields. I will be doing the insert glueing & Waterbourne Varethane clear coats, & grey paint under playfields. CPR contractor will be doing the finish clear coats. Marco Specialties will most likely be the source of inserts for 3/4" & 1" circle inserts. I might have to use Pinball Resource arrows which you could choose a alternate color. Bay Area amusements for rollovers, might be different color.

Seawitch donor playfield is here & Star Gazer should be here early May. The regular price is $600 US which includes shipping. If you are willing to prepay & help out on my next venture in pinball parts production. Please contact me. The $500 US includes shipping to USA/Canada. Looking for payment in the form of a cheque or money order. I think paypal doesn't like deposits for future sales of products. Those people helping out will be able to purchase Stern Backglass that I make @ $175 US each, & I will pick up the shipping USA/Canada. Seawitch, Star Gazer, Nine Ball, & Catacomb.

Post edited by greatwichjohn : Easier to follow production schedule & provide info.

#4 7 years ago

Thanks to the first 2 guys willing to get this project rolling. Here is my info to send a cheque or money order.

Great Pinball Limited
3389 St. Andrews Ave.
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Canada
B3L 3Y2

For the few that help out, I will do the glass offer for 1 year. So if other Stern titles come out, you can be further rewarded on savings.

The Star Gazer donor playfield should be here early May.

#6 7 years ago

Money Order is the preferred choice, if not the bank can hold the cheque. I'm looking for 5 - 10 total preorders. Big thanks to those stepping forward. The goal is the preorder guys get playfields shipped by the end of July. Seawitch & Star Gazer.

#8 7 years ago

Update:

You can paypal also if its easier! I believe it should be getting close to 10 preorders from around the world by the end of the month. Most likely I'm going to set April 30 as a cut off time for $500 a playfield preorder group. Payment can come after this date, but I need a email confirmation.

#16 7 years ago

Paypal info: greatwichjohn@hotmail.com

The cut off is April 30, I'm flexible on payment coming in May. But I need a email history to lock in the pre order price. Should be just over 10 playfields pre ordered, which helps me get the project going. Thanks to those helping out.

#19 7 years ago

The production cue & your position as money received:
Star Gazer #1 R.V. Corona, CA, #2 M.M. Maryland Heights, MO, #3 B.B. St Charles, MO
Seawitch #1 J.S. Gibsonia,PA, #2 B.B. St Charles, MO

#21 7 years ago

Custom Maple A1 veneer both sides plywood, with Baltic Birch core ordered. 4' x 8' x 1/2" sheets
Minimum order is 20 sheets, no real savings at 60 sheets (lift). So first order of 20 sheets should be here the end of May.

Here is some info on the Canadian Wholesaler, & the plywood is Made in Canada. Baltic Birch is most likely Russian or European sources. Maple veneer i'm guessing is Canada, but it might be USA.

http://robertbury.com/about-us/

#24 7 years ago

The playfield should finish at the same thickness or slightly more because of all the clear coats.

Don't let the cue throw you off. All the early order playfields will go out together.

1 week later
#25 7 years ago

The deadline for the preorder special will end Sunday at Midnight. This is it for those that haven't paid for it or have it in the works.

I will update the list of guys who prepaid next week. More likely around 20, looks like 4 to 1 ratio, Star Gazer to Seawitch.

1 week later
#28 7 years ago

Thanks

Here is the latest update: The special plywood maybe in this week or next. Still waiting on the arrival of Star Gazer playfield. Still waiting on Marco Specialties for lense order confirmation.

#30 7 years ago

Update: May 15 Pre - Order Pricing extended until August 31, 2013 $500 US Star Gazer or Seawitch. Looks like Fall Delivery 2013 for finished playfields.

Plywood should arrive before the end of May. I just checked & the order is running through the plant in Western Canada. Classic Playfield Reproductions is looking at this source also. Most likely my order is first & Mike Purcell will see what the product looks like when it arrives.

There has been a delay with Marco Specialties with ordering the lenses. I should have a firm order on what is in stock by the end of the week. Certain lenses are out of stock, so they are going to ask Foremost Plastics about production time.

The contractor doing my cnc & printing is slowly moving to the new building over the next number of weeks. Building is ready for the move & the plywood is going there.

Star Gazer donor playfield is on its way for the end of May.

Production should start on playfields in June. The plan is to start having the playfields cnc'd, & start glueing in lenses that are available (June - July). Wait on the others from Foremost.

I will start posting pictures of the progress as it happens.

#32 7 years ago

Got it & I can send out paypal invoices.

#34 7 years ago

The custom plywood came in this morning. It will go to the printer for storage next week (new building). They are still processing my lense order at Marco. Star Gazer donor playfield arrived on Thursday. So the playfields will be looked at for cnc info, to go with the art. The cnc still needs to be moved along with all the printers in June to their new building.

1 week later
#36 7 years ago

I will try my best to make it as easy as possible for changing out the playfields. Talked with both of my printers on Thursday. Art is with printer with the color span, he is sending it over to my other printer. The printer that does my glass work & new playfield work. This printer is still set up at the old building for inkjet printing & cnc. The new building has the paper printing business moved in. The plywood is stored there, & the cnc still needs to be moved. So it might be late June or July for cutting. CNC cut files to be done in June. 80% of light lense is picked at Marco Specialties, & 18% ordered from Foremost by them, 2% is the yellow arrows that I might have to sub on Seawitch.

#37 7 years ago

Pictures of the 19 sheets, I was shorted 1. Custom plywood, the top few are bowed, & when the straps are cut will be weighted down.

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2 weeks later
#38 7 years ago

Update: Marco Specialties is shipping my lense order Friday. Will post pictures when they arrive, & see if everything is ready to go. Cnc & printing stuff has already been moved to the printers new location.

1 week later
#39 7 years ago

Update: The majority of the light lenses arrived today from Marco Specialties. The biggest one missing that I have to ask the status is 3/4" yellow opaque, & 3/4" orange clear missing. I have about 50% Red opaque 1" for Special from PBR. I need to see if they can supply more lenses.

Seawitch owners need to decide what sub for yellow arrow from PBR source ones: Red or White opaque, & Blue or Orange clear. Can someone tell me if 2X & 4X are 1" green clear?

I was at my printer picking up back glass. The cnc is now moved in & the wall installed. A tech is being brought in next week to tune up the cnc. Donor used playfields are going in for code Wednesday.

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#41 7 years ago

No I have done a few CPR playfields in the past (Eight Ball & Pinbot), & I check the lenses on my direct ink projects. This is nothing compared to CPR projects of 30 to 100, or more per run.

#43 7 years ago

Thanks! Update the playfields donors for measuring are at the printers. Just talked with Marco Specialties to see how quickly Foremost Plastics can get the 3/4" yellow opaque inserts done. Also to see about 3/4" orange clear, & 1" red opaque (I have a few from PBR, might see if I can get a few more).

#45 7 years ago

Still trying for late summer if possible. It will come down to finish clear coats.

#49 7 years ago

Marco Specialties will probably let me know about Foremost Plastic's production next week. The printer will work on the cnc code, & do some throw away testing on cheap wood this month. As soon as things look ok, playfields will start to be cut. I can always glue what inserts I have while I wait.

Also working on Dolly Parton conversions, might be 2 different playfield conversions to choose from. People will definitely be surprised how quickly this can be done. I hope to have each one available at the Ottawa Pinball Show in September, & Expo in October. Art already done on the artists version.

1 week later
#51 7 years ago

July 12 Update: Still trying to get word back from Foremost Plastics from Marco Speciaties. Just paid my $2k bill on most of the inserts here. Playfield cutting code needs to be done at the printer.

If the Dolly Parton conversion is ready to go we will do a few sample playfields up for myself & the artist. To show at the Ottawa Pinball Show, & Pinball Expo. All the inserts are ready for these.

#53 7 years ago

Both use 3/4" Yellow opaque. Which is the major one, I'm also asking about the yellow Stern arrow, & a few others inserts.

1 week later
#55 6 years ago

Update: It was really hard to finally get Foremost Plastic to commit to Marco Specialties for these needed 3/4" yellow opaque lenses. So it looks like between 2 - 3 months for these to come in. Trying to see if we can get some other ones in this order also. If not I might be able to trade with CPR for a few other ones.

So it looks like the playfields will hopefully be out for xmas 2013. Code for cnc of both should be done in August, they are waiting on the tech to give them some advice next month. CPR has given some guidance on bit to do the shooter lane.

The cut off date for pre orders is still August 31. After this time nothing more will be taken for orders until all the pre orders are filled. Also the price will likely go to $650 US for a playfield.

Still haven't got a response from Star Gazer owners about what they have for blocking on the glass. One guy says his beater is almost all white, so i'm doing some of these.

So the plan is to move forward with a few Dolly Parton conversion playfields to show results & test the process of manufacturing.

#56 6 years ago

It looks like all the light lenses are ordered except for the yellow Stern arrows that Foremost Plastics can't produce. So Seawitch owners will decide what arrow they want used from what I have here.

#58 6 years ago

That's the one, got 4 at the printer to be made. A white one is up on Ebay now.
ebay.com link

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#60 6 years ago

For all the pre-order guys of Star Gazer or Seawitch Playfields, my offer of $175 US a glass with shipping on me to USA/Canada is good for the remainder of 2013. You can also get a Catacomb, Nine Ball, Seawitch, & Star Gazer. I'm having a real hard time trying to reach Mike Halse, who worked on these. If he comes forward with more finished titles for Stern, these will be offered also to the pre-order guys. I won't be flexible on the glass offer, the cut off to order will be December 31, 2013. You can order now or wait, if you are getting Star Gazer please wait until the latest version comes out next week. I would think people will want the lighter version with less blocking.

Marco Specialties said 6-8 weeks on the remainder light lenses from Foremost Plastics. I said 2-3 months to be safe. The schedule looks like playfield cutting August-September, Printing October, Finish Clear Coats November, Shipping December before Xmas.

1 week later
#62 6 years ago

August 1 Update:

Everything still looks good for all playfields pre-ordered to be finished this year. The delivery target is to have them all finished & in your hands by xmas.

To speed things up my contractor that does my vinyl cutting in the past for direct ink restorations. Will be doing all the playfield cad files & cutting the playfields. They start the cad files this month, & I will be getting them cut as soon as testing is done on cheap wood.

The printer that does my back glass work is way to busy on the printing side. So this works out using another contractor, who can do my projects into their schedule.

Here is pictures of how the new Star Gazer backglass will be printed from now on. Double Ink for Color & White, Single Gray Blocking.

2 weeks later
#63 6 years ago

August 20 update: CNC code should be started this week for Star Gazer playfields. Test print for light lenses on donor playfield was spot on. Seawitch wasn't & it was probably a print problem. The plywood has heavy stuff stored on it & should flatten out some top warp ones. Final inserts should be here in September.

#65 6 years ago

Yes I plan on having the cnc dimple the bottom. The 4 Star Gazer back glass I had up on Ebay, are getting the ink removed & redone for early September.

1 week later
#68 6 years ago

I was into the sign shop today, most of cnc code already done for the top side.

1 week later
#73 6 years ago

Update: Got the call Thursday that the final needed inserts from Foremost Plastics arrived at Marco Specialties. So that looks good for production. CNC code for topside of Star Gazer is finished & I will have the dimpling info for next week.

2 weeks later
#75 6 years ago

September 24 Update: Last of inserts should arrive this week. I just returned Star Gazer playfield to the sign shop with the dimpling/drilling requirements for cnc code. The sheets of plywood get moved to their shop next week. Playfields start production in October.

#78 6 years ago

Star Gazer is the first. I'm still having no luck getting in contact with Mike Halse. I would like to see if he has any improvements to Seawitch art. The playfield will get cnc code as soon as Star Gazer starts cutting. So far almost 30 ordered, about 6 Seawitch playfields ordered.

#79 6 years ago

All inserts are here. The plywood gets moved on Friday, & hopefully test cutting next week on Star Gazer playfields.

1 week later
#81 6 years ago

I'm donating the glass which is already sent to the auction. Star Gazer didn't make the 4 I sent. Nine Ball, Catacomb, Aloha, & Sweet Sioux. The glass will be on display in my booth, off to the auction for charity Saturday night.

Update: Cnc code still being worked on. I talked with the owner & he knows that cutting of all the Star Gazer playfields should be the start of November.

1 week later
#83 6 years ago

I'm guessing I will go the extra mile & make sure they work/installed.

1 week later
#84 6 years ago

Update for the end of October: People should start seeing major progress on the Star Gazer playfields in November. The sign shop lost a clear film guide for doing lense inserts, which I replaced today. The donor playfield is there with dimple guide. The project moves towards the top of their priority projects. I hope to approve the cut file early next week. They are ordering new bits for the cnc.

When I post pictures of playfield production, pre order special $500 US shipped to USA for Star Gazer or Seawitch will end. If you have been on the fence this is it. Price will rise to $600 US without shipping.

Marco Specialties will be selling my playfields also in 2014.

2 weeks later
#87 6 years ago

The cad work should be done by next week. The plywood is taking up production space in their small work shop. I will post the cut & drill info to see if anyone can spot any problems or mistakes. If it looks ok they will cut a test board & I will post the pictures.

As usual I did not have a realistic time line for production. It is a slow learning curve to get things moving. I check with the contractors every week. There will be no new playfields going out this year. My guess is all Star Gazer playfields going out February 2014 for preorders, & March 2014 Seawitch. Then the next higher priced Star Gazer run for distributors & people who didn't get in the first group.

Things will move quickly, but the hold up will likely be the finish clear coating. Could be 2 - 8 weeks depending on what CPR has lined up ahead of me. So the push is on to get the playfields inked by xmas.

The last 3 weeks I have been going through US Brokerage to save people paying the high UPS charges into the USA. So if you paid for glass, please email me to let me know, & I will get it out ASAP.

The glass special pricing will be extended for 2014 because of the delays.

#89 6 years ago

See what happens over the next 6 weeks. A very slow start, but it can speed along, & if someone is doing a show or in a rush please let me know. I will do my best to fast track some through clear coating, but it won't be back to you until probably end of January. Star Gazer are first.

#92 6 years ago

Unfortunately very little art is coming my way. I do what I can, & could do a lot more. The good thing is small projects can be done. My next ad in Pinball Magazine will focus on looking for art from people, hobbyist or industry.

My main art guy, Mike Halse has gone mia. If anyone is in contact with him, let me know if he is ok. He had 6 backglass projects ready over a year ago.

1 week later
#95 6 years ago

Update: The shop contacted me & explained how backed up they are with projects. Good for them, bad for us waiting on playfield production. I know they are busy, since I drive by the shop every day, & see people working into the night. That being said, they want the business, & have said the push will be on to get Star Gazer playfields done in December before xmas.

If anyone is having cold feet or no longer wants to wait with the delays. You can contact me & get a refund!

#99 6 years ago

I was in the shop today, talked with the owner & staff. The push is on for December to router Star Gazer playfields! They are finished preliminary cad work, for cnc & dimple/drilling. They are printing the info on clear film for inspection on donor playfield, which the art was aligned perfectly on the printers clear film for checking accuracy. I will show pictures of the process later this week. If everything is ok, test cut one asap. See how it looks, any corrections to be done, & then all cut before xmas.

#105 6 years ago

Art just needs to be 300 dpi or better. Doesn't need to be vector. What I got from the sign shop wasn't acceptable, & I will talk with the owner.

#107 6 years ago

I did talk with the owner on Friday & the woman doing the cad work. It looks like something went wrong with the test prints to show cad work. But when we looked at the cad work transposed on top of artwork on the computer, everything looks fine. They are still eager to push ahead with the playfields, so if everything looks good after test cut. I will put a rush on Seawitch cad work, so that they can be cut after the Star Gazer playfields. We are now into December, & the push will be on to get these done over Winter. My latest guess is Star Gazer's being sent to owners in February & Seawitch in March 2014.

Here are pictures of Star Gazer backglass with mostly white back. I sold a bunch of mostly gray blocking ones in the past. No one really came out & said that it was wrong. I did hear some people say they looked dark, but I didn't have a glass to compare it to. So this is the new version which i'm doing now.

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#109 6 years ago

Mike Halse had that almost complete. He has been missing for over a year, doesn't respond to emails or phone calls from me. If anyone is contact with him, have him contact me! I have a free glass award if someone comes through. My main art guy, & things have really slowed down production wise because of it.

Anyone who has ordered a glass, paid for it, & still hasn't received it let me know. For everyone who has ordered a playfield & paid. You have all of 2014 to receive any Stern glass I produce for $175 US shipped to USA/Canada, overseas will be any shipping over $50.

#115 6 years ago

The glass production has changed back before summer 2013. My Planetary Pinball license required 2 hits of color & 2 hits of white, & 1 hit of blocking (lush black). This double hits of ink definitely improves the look of the glass, & I have switched all my production this way. Has increased my costs from my printer but a definite improvement. There is probably way more ink on the glass then traditional screening methods currently used. My non Bally & Williams glass keep gray blocking. So now there should be no complaints of the glass looking washed out for colors or white. It is a learning curve for me & others, everyone can learn from how others are producing product. We are all trying to make a quality product for a reasonable price to keep pinball machines looking good or restored to their glory.

Update: It looks like next week for a cut test for Star Gazer. It looks like minor tweaking of some holes for drilling & dimpling. Light lenses & routering looks close to 100%.

2 weeks later
#117 6 years ago

Yes, it is still waiting on final cad corrections & a test to see a test sample board. It has been slowed down by other urgent projects at their shop. Everything is a learning curve & the first one is going extremely slow. As soon as they are ready, cutting should be fast compared to months going on.

The other contractors look good for production early 2014:

The printer should be able to fast track printing the playfields. I have built up my glass inventory for the winter. The CPR clear coat contractor is eager for more work. My main focus will be on playfield prep as soon as they are done (cut).

If you ordered & paid for a glass. Let me know if you are still waiting. I have a large amount of Star Gazer & Seawitch glass ready for shipping.

So for 2014 it looks like playfields out to customers in April on. That is my best guess, since the plywood is taking up production space. The owner would like to see it gone & money received for work. My vacation in Texas is likely March 10 - March 31, & Denver show mid April. So I want both titles hopefully out for finish clear coating before I go on vacation in March. Ready to ship before Denver show in April.

The Dolly Parton conversions will be later 2014, I will piggyback on CPR production for Las Vegas playfields if the layout is identical. Which it should be, so I would buy their cut playfields & install my own lenses. So there is one less cad project to be done.

#118 6 years ago

I was talking with the owner today. Cad is finished, & a test board is scheduled for Friday. He definitely wants all the Star Gazer playfields cut in January.

2 weeks later
#121 6 years ago

I'm still waiting myself. Staff had their holidays, so I wait.

1 week later
#122 6 years ago

Looks like we should be cutting playfields early February. Testing going on now with the first one. Missing some holes drilled & 1 pop bumper at top. Light lenses fit nicely, shooter lane needs bigger bit, & the lip for lenses will be shortened.

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#125 6 years ago

Actually the sign shop does guess what - lots of signs! Don't know what this light weight white plastic is called, but that is what they used for the initial test. Other tests could be mdf board or other stuff that's cheap for testing.

Also this shop uses the same laser cutter as guess who? So I plan on plastic production in the future.

#126 6 years ago

The test board went back to the shop. I spot 3 things missing & they will narrow down the lip for the lenses. Get ready for the drilled holes. I will update when they do the next sample.

#127 6 years ago

Talked with the owner & lady that does the cad work. Hopefully test #2 end of this week.

1 week later
#129 6 years ago

Ok we are slowly getting ready for cutting Star Gazer playfields. 2nd test was done that I need to verify to cheap Baltic Birch from Home Depot for testing only. They will be getting new bits for the cnc & still searching out the correct one for the shooter lane.

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3 weeks later
#132 6 years ago

I have been under the weather the last couple of weeks. Slowly going over all the holes, & figuring out the correct size. For the dimple holes for light sockets, they have used 1/8". I would think this will be ok, different. They missed the hole for playfield prop. Still have to see ball shooter test. Time is running short, I leave for Texas March 13 to 31. I would like to give the final ok, & have Star Gazer's cnc finished & cut while I'm away in Texas.

I see they want the boards back. Ready for ball shooter lane test. So Monday they go in.

#135 6 years ago

Playfield & wood test went back to the shop. I went over all dimpling & drill holes. Hope to have a finish test in a week before I leave for Texas. Have Star Gazer playfields cut for my return on April 1, hopefully not a joke on me!

#137 6 years ago

Have no idea in my area Stern pins were rare for our operators to buy & operate 1978-1982. Bally was king in pinballs on location & Williams was second, Gottlieb 3rd, & Stern 4th, & all others.

1 week later
#140 6 years ago

Update as we approach 1 year. Yes things are slow & I'm on vacation in until April 1. I was into the sign shop doing the cnc work today. They will have a final test board when I return to inspect. Then cutting Star Gazer playfields & get these done hopefully finished// Error: Image 202508 not found // by early summer. Then onto the few Seawitch playfields.

One of the buyers is restoring his pin for Texas Pinball Festival, if all the stars align. So I have quickly done a restoration while coping with colds & flu. Ed is also getting Stern glass for the show. I will have some on display at my booth.

So I appreciate everyone's patience on getting this finished. Here are some pictures of the restored playfield, ink alignment was perfect. There is definite shrinkage around the lenses. Hopefully it gets cleared & populated for the show.

2 new rollover & the shoot again lense at the bottom were new ones installed

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3 weeks later
#144 6 years ago

Final call this month, April 2014 to get on the pre order for Star Gazer playfields. After this the price is going from $500 US with shipping on me to USA/Canada to $600 US + shipping. Likely the same for Seawitch pre order with May 30 as the last day.

#149 6 years ago

It's still $500 with time running out. The ink work should be even better than my restorations. The old color span is almost 10 years old (only 1 hit of color). Playfields (new) are being printed on the OCE, same as the backglass. So there will be 2 hits of white, & 2 hits of color.

I got back from Texas with a huge cold, & we got hit with snow/ice today. Will likely see about the cnc work on Tuesday.

#152 6 years ago

***IMPORTANT UPDATE INFO FOR PRE ORDER BUYERS OF STAR GAZER PLAYFIELDS***

The final deadline for getting in the $500 US pre order is April 30, 2014 & May 31, 2014 for Seawitch! Shipping is on me to USA/Canada & discounted for other country.

Those that are in the pre order group will be able to buy any Stern backglass that I produce for $175 US each, & any Williams or Gottlieb glass for $200 each. Free shipping on me to USA/Canada, discounted shipping other country. 1 to 3 glass in a box. Offer ends December 31, 2014

You can get glass for others in the same box, & shipped to your address.
Stern: Star Gazer, Seawitch, Nine Ball, & Catacomb
Gottlieb: Eye Of The Tiger, Gaucho, Aloha, Happy Go Lucky, Sweet Sioux
Williams: Lucky Strike, Bowl A Strike, pending Triple Strike

It won't be extended again, & likely will be priced minimum $600 + shipping.

There are around 30 Star Gazer, & 10 Seawitch pre orders. I plan on cutting around 40 initial Star Gazer playfields.
I'm slowly coming around to how slow the process of start up is for playfields. This will be a lot of personal hands on work for production by myself. So likely 1 - 3 months here for glueing, drilling, sanding, pre clear for printing.

I have done work in the past on some other playfield production, & years (8) in the restoration process. Some things will be done differently like small pilot holes for a guide for screw holes. Some holes I will drill myself from the pilot holes since I'm limited on the first cnc at this sign shop.

What I can say is more time & detail should be shown by myself for production. I plan on separating even the same color & size light lenses. Keeping those ones with the same stamp id as much as I can on the same playfield. This isn't mass production of many playfields a year.

The only hold up right now is waiting on the bit to cut the shooter lane. I'm going over this final test on plastic for all the holes & lenses. The lip for the lenses to rest on is very close to the thickness. They will be epoxy glued in, & all my playfields will be electric hand sanded.

The OCE that does my backglass will be used for playfield production. 2 hits of white, & 2 hits of color.

I really appreciate the support & patience of the guys showing confidence in pre order & paying for their future playfield! Thanks again, & I look forward to producing many more titles.

Pictures will be posted as I go through different production schedules.

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#154 6 years ago

That restoration was quickly sanded down (bare), prepared for ink, & inked just before I left for Texas. It was cleared & installed in days for the show. Blows away people saying wait a month before playing!

I talked with Marc from Marco Specialties who will likely be selling my playfields later. He has many old playfields that might be used for donors in the near future. I'm open for doing a wide variety of titles & wide body games but I need the art files. At this time I prefer to do Stern & custom/conversion pins, open to Gottlieb & other ones. I would rather wait to do Bally/Williams until I know it's a definite go.

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#157 6 years ago

I would love to do many Stern playfields. But most people know I have no art talent. It's hard to get people on board over the years with the massive art/production team at CPR. I'm a alternate for production & willing to work with people on low demand projects. I am a licensee for Gottlieb & Planetary Pinball for backglass. Which should allow playfield production if the title is available or more production is allowed.

#160 6 years ago

Yes it was outstanding work on your part & a great clear job. I had the school of hard knocks with body & sign shops trying to rush the process over the first 3 years. I tell all interested manufacturers to take your time in doing clear coats with uv ink!

1 week later
#166 6 years ago

Important Info for guys on Star Gazer & Seawitch pre orders. Please email me at my new email account. My Hotmail info is all gone. johngreatwich@outlook.com

Copy of paypal or email correspondence. Please make sure it has your mailing address & phone info. Thanks

On top of that my month long cold continues & I'm now got pneumonia.

I will compile a new hard copy list of those that have paid for playfields. It looks like May for Star Gazer playfields to be cut, & June for Seawitch.

#172 6 years ago

Well after a year of getting geared up for production. 1st projects are always the hardest, & way too optimistic on production time lines. Things will finally move forward at a good pace early May after I return from Allentown.

Please keep emailing me johngreatwich@outlook.com to verify your on the pre order list & have paid!

Starting in May all the guys on the pre order list will get private updates. I would like to keep my production techniques & process private. People produce playfields very differently for production & quality control. So I will ask that people don't post my info or video. Please keep it private!

Everything that is going on with production will be disclosed privately to those who have paid for playfields. You will see all that is happening, how things are done, & the whole process of production.

I plan on making extra playfields for each title. Hopefully this will mean that you get a Grade A to A+ playfield, Grade B will be minor problems, & Grade C will be major problems will go for sale after everyone has received theirs. Also I will be holding on to extra Grade A playfields for a few months in case there are any problems. Playfields will get a sticker with my info under the new playfield, & will have a grading stamp on the bottom side. This should hopefully lead to less issues down the road if guys are reselling the playfields (grading from finished condition before shipping).

As always thanks to you all that have signed on from the start to the deadline for SG this month & Seawitch end of May.

1 week later
#177 6 years ago

Here is the info you guys have been waiting for. The shooter lane was done today & looks great. The plan is to do the first four playfields by the time I return from Allentown show. If everything is ok, the rest of the playfields get cut.

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#179 6 years ago

I checked with the sign shop. The first 4 playfields were to be cnc'd today. I will check in the morning & if everything looks ok I will get 36 more cut while I'm in Allentown.

#181 6 years ago

***STAR GAZER PLAYFIELDS CUTTING NOW***

Finally people should see their playfields delivered in July - August. I will just post pictures of progress up here, & keep production process of my contractors/myself some what confidential.

I have only received partial list of prepaid buyers. It is important that you verify your info if you haven't done so over the next few months. Microsoft has totally abandoned my access to my Hotmail account.

You can reach me through www.greatpinball.com or johngreatwich at outlook dot com

I'm off to Allentown, & when I return I prep the playfields in May for uv inkjet printing.

The dead line for Star Gazer is April 30!

#188 6 years ago

No worries, everyone who paid for their playfield(s) will be ok. So much for my Hotmail account sitting dormant, getting messages I can't access. All emails please send to johngreatwich at outlook dot com

#191 6 years ago

Checked with the sign shop. The normal tech that does the cnc work was off today. There were 12 playfields cut, but the owner & I don't know if they are ready for me to take home. So I should know Thursday whether these ones are ready to go.

Thursday AM update:

Just got back the topside is done, bottoms still need drilling & prop hole routered. So it looks like Monday (early next week) before I start prep & lense insertion.

While I was there I watched the laser in operation for cutting plastics. That will come into use for Dolly Parton conversions later this year.

Saturday Update: The 12 initial playfields will be ready Monday for my pick up if its dry. They plan on running the final 28 over the month of May.

#193 6 years ago

Monday May 12, 2014 STAR GAZER playfields into production mode. First 10 here & other 2 were on the table getting finished. The other 28 cut this month. I have decided to be a open source of information on all pinball product I manufacturer. Hopefully we will see more people producing product. My way of producing playfields hopefully will see low demand playfields produced on demand in the future. I just need more support from people providing art at 300 dpi or better. Not vector graphics (individual color layers), so it should be a lot easier to do for those with the skills.

Playfields get cnc work done on a large vacuum table. Bit change by operator. Topside is done first, & shooter lane done in one pass. The 4' x 8' x 1/2" custom Baltic Birch Plywood, has hard maple veneer topside & A1 bottom side. The cost per sheet last year was around $250. The cnc cuts the outline of each playfield blank from the full sheet of plywood. Each blank is then placed in the designated spot for cutting & is held in place by the vacuum. When the topside is done, it gets masked for cutting of the bottom side to have a good vacuum.

The playfields now get my attention to see if holes or light lenses need more work. More pictures will be provided as I slowly go through the lot. So be patient, this is a one man operation plus my contractors. I'm busy with my 6 day a week City job + overtime. Glass sales & pinball servicing/operating in my area.

Tuesday AM - Picked up the other 2 playfields. They cut 4 topside, others to follow as they have time.

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#198 6 years ago

Here is some more info on my hands on prep work for playfields. I check each insert hole to make sure I sanded it clean with a test insert lense. If it needs further sanding it gets done, all holes verified. All the work done by the cnc, is sanded clean to remove debris.

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#201 6 years ago

Installing inserts on the first 12 playfields. Here is how i'm doing it. They get epoxy to holes for inserts, & I level them with a oval insert. This makes them flush or slightly below the surface. After they are all installed they will get more epoxy to fill in any gaps around the top edge of inserts.

I do a grading system before I start the inserts. Each playfield is inspected & gets a production sticker. A - no flaws in cnc, B - less than 1/4" total surface are of chips around some inserts holes, & C - anything above 1/4" surface area that needs repairs (edge damaged or ripped top maple veneer). So in reality of my production A & B are considered the same for playfield plywood grading.

All inserts are hand inspected by me & sorted. Grade A, B, C, & rejects. I try to use the same for each grade, & if possible use a A grade close to bottom for B if available.

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#202 6 years ago

First 12 playfields have all inserts installed. Next is to seal them & sand them. 2 coats of clear to seal the wood before going to the printer early June. I will check in & see if more playfields are finished cutting.

Wednesday May 21
6 playfields cut topside, & they are busy at the shop. So likely next bunch of cut playfields end of May or early June.

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Thursday - Playfields get some curing time before sanding in the booth. Probably this weekend for sanding.

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2 weeks later
#204 6 years ago

Update: There are 20 more playfields cut for topside & another 8 more to cut. Turns out the out hole wasn't picked up for further cnc work. It needs to be cut on the bottom side. So when the first 12 playfields are sanded by me with the lense inserts they will be going back for the last correction. I hope to have the first 12 inked early July. I will likely not post pictures until the first batch receive ink.

I will be talking with Marco Specialties to order the yellow arrows required for Seawitch, & get the cad started this month for cnc work. Verify the art is good to go, or I will get it fixed up. Mike Halse if you see this contact me please!

#205 6 years ago

So far I'm happy with the initial 12 playfields slowly going through the production process from myself. Real hands on quality control. I keep repairing any nicks with epoxy during the process. I'm using G2 Epoxy System which CPR was using years ago. Stuff is great & long lasting for storage. Most of the production supplies are bought from Lee Valley.

I have installed the lenses flat as possible to the surface of plywood. I'm happy with this, & only had to drill out 1 yellow 3/4" lense (sunk to low) & 1 roll over (not level). This is radically different than what is done at CPR, lenses are raised above & sanded level with drum sander. My approach is to hand sand with discs. I noticed that I used way too much epoxy above the lenses.

So the next bunch I will barely seal the edges above, so there will be less sanding of lenses. This should lead to less burning of surface of the plywood. Already I notice that I have little burning of shooter lane (or none) because I don't drum sand the entire surface. Any lenses that need more epoxy to seal will get it after initial sanding

My comments are by no means saying my production is superior to any one else. Just how I'm doing it with very low production, & personal hands on production. I'm in contact with the tech who does CNC work at CPR, & he gets to see what I'm up to when he comes by for a visit.

I mask the roll overs for epoxy & clear coats to seal the wood. I use oracle 810 masking, which I have used for almost 9 years.

8 playfields ready, & last 4 should be back for the missing cnc cut for out hole end of this weekend. These will get cut with the other 28.

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#206 6 years ago

Update June 12

First 12 playfields back for missing router in the ball out hole area. These will be cut first so that I can get them sealed & ready for printing later this month. The final 28 playfields are cut topside, & will be done bottom side over the next few weeks.

Here are some pictures of the equipment at my sign shop contractor, & all 40 Star Gazer playfields in production. You can see the laser cutter for cutting future plastics.

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#208 6 years ago

I believe CPR has done plastics, so it won't be me.

#209 6 years ago

Missing router cut done underside the first 12 playfields. Should have them cleared before going to the printer before the end of June. Other 28 should be ready from bottom side cutting next week. Remaining plywood for Seawitch & Dolly Parton conversions stored under the cnc for now to free up space. Looks like 2 - 3 months before I get those going.

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#212 6 years ago

Big thanks to Marco Specialties promoting playfield production with lenses. They deal with Foremost Plastics to see what can get done.

#215 6 years ago

Roll overs from Marco don't have them & I personally hate them. Previously stated: I mask the roll overs for epoxy & clear coats to seal the wood. I use oracle 810 masking, which I have used for almost 9 years.

When it comes time for finish clear coats. I will talk with the contractor that does all CPR's work & mine. I have a few ideas to sort through.

#220 6 years ago

You hopefully gently knock them out. Sounds way easier than it actually is in my previous attempts. Also you have a chance of ripping or pulling the clear coat.

Yes I have heard of flipping the white star upside down. But I wonder if you would still have problems. Seems like a lot of clearance.

#225 6 years ago

Picked up the next 14 playfields after being cut, & final ones should be here next week. Almost ready to seal the first 12 before they go to the printer. 40 in total for Star Gazer.

#226 6 years ago

All the 40 playfields have been cut & are here at my house for production in July. Hopefully playfields are all finish cleared in August or September. Like I have said previously all the pre orders will be Grade A playfields, even If I have to produce more. Hopefully not but we will see when they are finished.

4 weeks later
#231 5 years ago

28 playfields almost ready for inserts starting next week. I will test one for printing likely late August, & make sure everything is ok.

1 week later
#235 5 years ago

I'm cutting back on shows for the next year or so. Not going to Expo, TPF, & Allentown.

2 weeks later
#238 5 years ago

Summer has been extremely busy as usual with my regular 48 hour job. All 40 Star Gazer playfields are in the basement for production. 12 have the light lenses installed, & 28 in September. The plan is to take 1 of the 12 in to the printer in a couple of weeks for printing. Then send it out to CPR contractor in October. This gives me time to get the rest ready. If everything looks ok, after 1st one is printed, & I further Varethane Gloss things should move forward for hopefully ending this run by the end of the year.

Seawitch cad & cutting to take place in early Fall. Also on my plate is playfield restorations, mainly Sorcerer. If for some reason things don't look good with the printer that lays down white ink. Then I will have to mask for white, & get them printed with the old colorspan 9840 uv inkjet printer.

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4 weeks later
#247 5 years ago

Just getting back into production, after another cold (had me out for 3 days) & busy month at my regular job. Printing should start early October to make sure everything is ok.

3 weeks later
#256 5 years ago

Still under the weather the last 4 weeks. Looking like mid November for Star Gazer test print. I have numerous colds & pneumonia this year. Had a chest x ray on Monday, but no one called me so it looks like i'm not done for yet! 2 bad colds in 4 weeks, missed my flu shot on Tuesday.

1 week later
#259 5 years ago

Update: This week is toast for new playfield production. Busy getting ready pins for Hal-Con Show here in Halifax. Might be 10,000 people going to the show & playing the free arcade.
Great Pinball Limited, has provided pinball machines to play for free & past tournament play.

http://hal-con.com/category/gaming/

Star Gazer playfields will be printed the first batch of 12 towards the end of this month & December, 28 playfields should be printed January & February. All playfields should be shipped this winter.

Seawitch is finally going into pre production at the sign shop. They have to lay out the cut file. I'm hoping these are cut in December. Looking like around March for printing start. All playfields should ship this spring.

Should be pictures & updates at the end of this month. All the contractors are ready to do their part of the production. It's a slow learning curve for us all, but things will get done this winter & spring.

#263 5 years ago

Seawitch Update: The art file & donor playfield are at the sign shop. The cnc code will be done hopefully by the end of the year. Cutting of the playfields should be done in January. I still have to seen if the yellow arrow can be molded. It might be another vendor, not Foremost plastics.

1 week later
#264 5 years ago

Seawitch Playfield Customers: please advise me on pop bumpers. It was suggested to cut the opening the same as Star Gazer. I see a notch on the underside on the donor playfield. Should they stay the same or go Star Gazer?

Star Gazer playfields will start printing in small batches early December.

#268 5 years ago

Yes that is what I was thinking, notch like original Seawitch. But cut slightly larger like Star Gazer. That should make everyone happy, which ever pop bumper they want to use (original or newer style).

Star Gazer playfields will not have the notch cut out.

1 week later
#279 5 years ago

Star Gazer Update: December is still the month some, most, or slim all get printed. 50% are now glued, & the rest will be finished by xmas. So they will get ready for 2 coats of varethane to seal the wood. Same proven way with the restorations done for years, & continue to be done. New playfields will be printed with the OCE that does my glass work for years.

I have a different way of doing production. Here is one thing I do for Rollover inserts. They get glued with epoxy which was used way back by CPR & is still available locally here G2 - 2 part epoxy system. I let the inserts dry for about a day, then I brush more epoxy around the edge & over each insert. These dry for 1 or more days before I sand. The rollovers get masked before I do this, & then I remove to let dry the next day.

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#283 5 years ago

I have another guy helping out with doing the inserts. All Star Gazer playfields will be finished this stage by xmas. #25 0f #40 inserts installed now. Today I ordered 50 inner & outer cardboard box, double wall similar to the ones used by CPR for shipping. They should be ready before xmas, 10 will be used for Sorcerer restorations going on.

#288 5 years ago

Recently I see all kinds of drama going on about product taking a long time to be finished. I see that my new pinball playfield production could be thrown in the same boat. So this month I will release the numbers on each playfield prepaid. I'm also going to do a monthly private email update of the production status to the owners. Seawitch owners will receive Star Gazer info since it's the same production info, & will let them see all the stages of production.

In the past the CPR finish clear coat contractor tested a Sorcerer restoration playfield. He did all the work after the uv ink playfield was air dried for 1 - 2 weeks. What is done is a light mist coat, & then 2 or more finish clear coats. It will cost me more, but it should speed up the process of getting new playfields out. So later this month we will make sure that this is ok.

For people on the fence about getting a playfield, this is the final month for $500 shipped to USA/Canada, or you pay the extra over seas above $100 for UPS. December 31, 2014 is the ***FINAL*** deadline. Like I have said from the start the best playfields are going out, & what's left will be going out to Marco Specialties 1st (supplier of Foremost Plastic inserts), my France distributor 2nd, & my Australia Distributor 3rd.

If you want to purchase: paypal johngreatwich@outlook.com $500 US & state which one you are purchasing. Please include your phone #.

The way things are going most likely other playfield titles will be coming the rest of 2015. So if it's a sell out for both, not likely more for these titles anytime soon.

#290 5 years ago

I am wide open to doing anything new in 2015. Either new or restorations. I might be open to doing custom or work on other new playfield projects. It will be very interesting for new stuff next year. I'm really surprised no one has come forward with em playfields, which could be produced in low numbers.

I could also do custom backglass work, some of which has been done. I just did Stern Iron Maiden glass, no interest so far. So who knows what is going on in the market place, it does show I can produce a few on demand as needed. So now you can get either outer or inner glass, or both on demand.

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#294 5 years ago

Keep in mind all Bally & Williams backglass needs to be approved & or sanctioned by Planetary Pinball. So if someone has the art ready to go, I still need to talk with Rick. There are many suppliers plus themselves for production.

I still have to get a Triple Strike glass out to Rick. So if you have a bad one there is hope. Stuck on bowling glass work so far, Lucky Strike, Bowl A Strike, & likely Triple strike.

#296 5 years ago

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#300 5 years ago

Update: Only 9 Star Gazer playfields left for inserts. Playfields start going to the printer in batches just before xmas. Shipping boxes should be here before xmas. I'm going to send the playfields out for all finish clear coats to the contractor.

Here are the pre order numbers 26 of 40 Star Gazer paid for in advance, & 20 of 40 Seawitch paid for in advance. I will likely reduce Seawitch to a run of 30.

This is it for $500 US each playfields paid in full. So if you are interested paypal: johngreatwich@outlook.com before January 1, 2015.

Left over playfields will be going out to Marco Specialties, some to France, & maybe Australia. I will not sit on finished playfields, & likely will not do more for years unless there is demand.

#302 5 years ago

Yes the guys that are in on my first new playfield runs. Really are getting them at cost or below, when it's all done. The left over playfields will be sold at $500 US to the distributors, & they have to pick up the freight. The best playfields are going out to the people who have pre paid them.

I will be starting up a email list with your order number ranking. Many are very close together, but they will be sent out by order received first.

#303 5 years ago

Last 4 Star Gazer playfields will have inserts installed this Saturday. Batches will soon be going to the printer. I will have a Seawitch status update from the sign shop that does the cad & cnc work the end of this week.

Still have lots of inserts left from Star Gazer. The other Seawitch ones are stored. Still working on the yellow arrow or sub. It won't be from Foremost Plastics, they want 100,000 minimal order.

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#308 5 years ago

Picked up 52 inner & outer double card board boxes for Star Gazer playfields. Printer has finally finished the last 8 backglass that were bad. So on a high note this year is all caught up for glass production. All bad ones have been replaced at no charge by me. About 10 in total this year, & about 20 by the printer for my ruined stock.

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#309 5 years ago

The last Star Gazer to get inserts done is minutes away. Here is the last blank & the 2nd last one getting inserts. The 52 double wall, inner & outer shipping boxes are now in my basement from the trailer. Lucky for us so far lots of rain & no snow! So it looks like playfields start going to the printer in the new year.

Seawitch i'm still waiting to talk with the sign shop about cutting playfields in January. These will be done very quickly!

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#313 5 years ago
Quoted from RoyF:

Merry Christmas John. I hope you are NOT working on Star Gazer playfields today!

Happy Holidays to everyone! Yes i'm doing some stuff, even though I have a bad right shoulder & arm. Drives my wife crazy that I work so much on pinball, & my 48 hour a week regular job.

Here is the last 4 playfields that had the inserts installed last Saturday. Just gave them a final epoxy brush to fill in any gaps. In for drying into the booth, & I will likely try to sand some playfields the next few days.

The printer had to reprint about 30 glass that went bad this year. My whole inventory about 20, & about 10 glass that had shipped to USA (2 in Australia which hurts when shipping is close to $400). So that was a bad year for glass sales. My inventory is back & slowly doing more new glass projects. Stern Iron Maiden for sale, & I believe Lightning will be over the winter.

No I haven't got the email list done. Likely in January with your order date & showing your playfield position.

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#315 5 years ago

Chris: Don't forget its a 2 piece set. If someone is good at photoshop, you can make a custom glass.

#316 5 years ago

Happy New Year! Testing out the custom shipping boxes that I got made with 2 Sorcerer restorations going out to USA. Very similar to what most companies use for playfields, double cardboard box. The ones I got seem to be stronger in cardboard strength. Double cardboard wall inner & outer box. So hopefully these will be almost bullet proof for shipping around the world.

Star Gazer playfields getting final inspections & clearing to seal the wood before printing in January.

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#319 5 years ago

I watched my mint Spectrum glass tumble to the floor. Almost like slow motion, I should of tried diving for a save. Once a tech showed us a Flash glass in cold storage, he just moved it gently on the floor to show us & it exploded.

#321 5 years ago

January 1, 2015

I decided that I will just keep on pushing forward with the playfields, & not get involved with private email updates. So please check in once a week/month, etc. here to see what's going on. Pushing close to 30 of 40 playfields of each pre ordered.

#323 5 years ago

Star Gazer playfields getting the finish hand sanding & QC checks. Any further repairs are done before they move on. Here are the first 6 that were just cleaned with naptha. The 6 will get 2 coats of clear to seal the wood & then go for printing next week. So all 40 have lenses installed.

Seawitch playfields I meet & find out the status for cutting on Thursday. As soon as they are cut they will start having inserts installed.

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#324 5 years ago

Seawitch Playfield update: The cad file for cutting is almost complete. They may cut a test next week for my approval. Then all 40 should start cutting later this month.

Star Gazer: I have a bad cold this week, but i'm still trying to get the first batch of 6 ready for printing next week.

#328 5 years ago

It's been a bad few years for me non stop colds & pneumonia. Seems like I always get bad lately at Texas Pinball Festival. Passing on this year. Got my flu shot as usual, but they didn't get it right this year. Could be being on CPAP machine also. For years they now believe that I stopped breathing 60 - 80 times a night before going on CPAP.

Drinking beer to fight the cold tonight, Boston Lager now. Finished off the Irish ale.

#329 5 years ago

Saturday Update: Still have a cold for a week, but still getting ready for Star Gazer printing next week. First coat of Varethane waterbourne gloss done last night, & second coat going on this morning. You can see the white star rollover inserts which are installed upside down for spraying & then removed before the playfield goes on the drying rack. Plywood starts to bow or warp over time from drying out which is normal. But it means the playfields will be laid flat & be weighted down at the printer. Hopefully to flatten them out for printing. If not they will go to the other printer & be screwed to 1/2" mdf as a they do for my restorations. More work for me if this happens since I have to mask for white & more coats of varethane. We will soon see how it goes through the printing process.

Seawitch cnc test hopefully next week. Their tech has been out for a week with a bad cold. The pop bumper holes will be slightly larger to take newer style like Star Gazer, & will have the 3 notches on the back for older style. The overall size opening difference is very small, which we saw on the cut file for Star Gazer.

I hope to have all the Star Gazer playfields done before the 2 year mark of talking about new playfields, & all Seawitch by early Spring. Seawitch ones will move quickly after the slow learning curve of the first ones. I'm still searching out a new source for quality plywood this year.

I keep showing a playfield with dark veneer spots in the pictures, very few are like this.

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#331 5 years ago

Printer is getting ready for a test. Pictures when I see how it goes. Might be next week.

#334 5 years ago

I think everyone is ready for playfields. I will be going to Texas Pinball Festival & see my brother in Austin. Always like the music seen at SXSW, in Austin. Then take in TPF, I'm hoping no cold or pneumonia this year. Plus its summer time weather for me mid March in Texas.

#336 5 years ago

*** Important Notice For Stern Backglass Special ***

The special for prepaid playfield guys getting a super deal on glass is ending March 1, 2015. I stated at the start a deal per glass $175 US shipped to USA/Canada. Other countries I will do actual shipping minus $50 US per glass @ $175 (maximum 2 glass overseas).

This special is well below my actual costs, & is to show my appreciation over the delays or slowness of getting the playfields done.

Choice of Stern glass is Star Gazer, Seawitch, Nineball, Catacomb, & Iron Maiden (1 individual glass $175 US or pair $350 US)

So if you have been thinking about a glass, this is the final deadline. After this the special will be $250 US each shipped to USA/Canada. For the rest of 2015.

I have asked Marco Specialties to bring their pricing in line with my Ebay sales. So if you haven't bought a playfield, & are interested in the glass that I produce. I suggest you place a order with them ASAP!

#338 5 years ago

Printer says a Star Gazer test is ready. So I will see in the morning.

#340 5 years ago

Well I posted earlier with a new thread for those that haven't been following this one: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/star-gazer-playfields

The main test was to get the printer up to speed on playfield printing. This is the first test & looked very nice. What I noticed right away is the key line for the base white needs to be pulled back, & that white is not needed in the light lense printing. So overall great news to push the playfields through printing quickly. Also the CPR contractor for finish clear coats picked it up within hours. So if everything is ok after the finish clear coat test. Playfields will go quickly from the printer to me, & ready for pickup for clear coating. Next test should be ready next week, & if it looks correct its full steam ahead for printing.

My plan is to offer the first playfield up to the prepaid guys first. So if you are interested let me know, & if there are no problems with the clear coating it will go out quickly. If there is no interest I plan to put it up on Ebay for $600 US + $100 US shipping to USA/Canada. This one will likely be one of a kind & the first production playfield from me. But take into consideration the flaws of printing the first one! Thanks guys for hanging in there, these should get printed & mostly shipped before Texas Pinball Festival.

Seawitch should be cutting very soon, & will get the lenses installed quickly. Be finished over Spring 2015.

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#342 5 years ago

I just let the printer do the first one to see if white base that is printed first would be hidden. It's not & the printer is very familiar with key lining so you don't see it. With the color span that I use for playfield restoration, it does not print white. So the light lenses receive no white base ink, which is a distraction on the first test. Yes that was my mistake not thinking it was needed in the lense inking.

#345 5 years ago

***Star Gazer Playfields Pre Order Deadline is January 25***
A few more orders have come in, & I have to set a firm end order date. If you are on the fence, act quickly! $500 US

#348 5 years ago

The deadline has passed for Star Gazer playfields, & I start to push the bulk of them through printing & clear coating. Here is pictures of the second playfield test & it goes out for finish clear coats. The white has been removed from inside light lenses text or symbol. But there still needs more pull back around the inserts & ink edge. So if the printer gets number 3 correct, he is given the go ahead to fast track the rest.

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#350 5 years ago
Quoted from RoyF:

John, could you tell those of us with less knowledge of playfield inking what that statement means?
So exciting to see a vibrant unworn Star Gazer playfield!

What is done is the printer lays down the white ink first. Then the color ink laid on top of the white ink. He pulled it back 3 notches in printer lingo. So now 2 of 2 playfields going through production ramp up at the printer are very nice, but not super nice because of the white showing. I told the printer to pull it back much more, & I'm sure he wants the 3rd one hopefully near perfect.

So in comparison a lot of white visible in the first one, & the second one is better. This should be not seen with black or color bordering the edge of light lenses or playfield border art color.

#353 5 years ago

Just like to say Steve who does all the CPR playfields & my restorations/new playfields. He had put on the mist & first coat on playfield #1 & everything looks ok for his end of production. Heard that when he picked up #2.

The white is not needed in the light lense text or symbols, below the black ink. Pulling back the white a lot to be hidden around the black rings for insert edges shouldn't be a problem.

The storm has pretty well shut down our city today.

#354 5 years ago

Update: 6 of 40 printed for Star Gazer. 2 of 40 out for finish clear coats, these 4 go next.. Still waiting on cnc start up for Seawitch playfields. Everything is looking very nice for over all production. Is it perfect, compared to years & tens of thousands of CPR playfields screen printed NO! I was hoping the uv inkjet production would be perfect but its not. It looks extremely nice for over all inking of playfields. But you still see some lightness on the edge of ink & the light lenses. I paid the printer to pull it back some more the white, but it doesn't totally eliminate the problem.

I now see the real cost for producing limited runs of 40 playfields. I can tell you that all the guys that have prepaid playfields that it is a super deal. After slowly seeing all the contractor, material, & shipping costs. The playfields will be produced at a serious loss for me. Start ups are always a slow learning curve on doing new production.

So I will post pictures of the finished clear coated playfields when they return. These first 2 will be put back into the lot for prepaid guys since they aren't that much different. What I'm going to do is post pictures of each numbered playfield, & rate each one. Starting from the earliest guys they will a chance to pick from the group ready to ship. So you get a chance to pick, if you don't like it you go to the top of the next pick group. Almost like a draft system.

All Star Gazer playfields should ship out before the 2 year mark. What a slow learning curve for me, & I hope to get all the Seawitch playfields out just after this.

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#359 5 years ago
Quoted from schudel5:

Looks great John! Question. Is there supposed to be white layed down under the slings or is that done later?

Good call on your part! I totally missed that during the first six going through production. There should be white for slings & 5 other areas middle to top of playfield. So I will take the sample used playfield over to the printer with the next batch to be done. So first 6 will be easily identified out of the 40.

Quoted from mof:

Is there any reason you can't charge a fair price to new customers who didn't fund your project? Your loyal followers paid $500, knowing full well we were getting a great deal in exchange for helping you fund a big undertaking. Now that it's nearing completion, is there any reason you can't charge $750/$850 for your PFs for those that are getting in now?
I see no harm in recouping your $$$ on those that didn't help fund your project. Isn't that standard and reasonable?
-mof

Star Gazer is closed, very close to 40 preorders. Same with Seawitch, which will likely close before March.

There is other things going on with me, & possibly Heighway Pinball. Along with others for Pinball Glass Production in 2015, as a supplier. So likely these Star Gazer & Seawitch playfield runs are it for 2015. I will see what happens in 2016, but this might be it for some time.

Here are pictures of the donor playfield, which will get restored soon with the color span.

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#361 5 years ago

This one was heavily worn & someone touched it up. From the middle to the bottom. After it is restored it will look nice. The ultimate in recycling old playfields back to being nice.

Quoted from Pdxmonkey:Woah what's up with the different art on the donor?
Those production ones look sweet!

#372 5 years ago

They say they will have a top template test for Seawitch cut by Friday am.

#373 5 years ago

Seawitch Production Update: They are getting confident doing playfields so this one needs to be gone over (no template test). I see they forgot the lane switches, & a few dimple holes. I will clean this first one over the weekend, & check the lense holes, etc. These should be cut before I go to Texas March 17. They will get fast tracked along, as they come back from the cnc.

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#375 5 years ago

Seawitch: I need to order some more lenses in from Marco Speciaties. I probably have most but are a little light on a few. The ones I need are in stock, but I have to verify what is left. I will get the cut depth raised 1/32" for lenses. The right rollover was cut wrong - too small 1" lense.

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#378 5 years ago

Yes the arrows are a problem. There is no yellow ones, & there is no way Marco Specialties is going to order 10,000 of them. That is the minimum Foremost Plastics wants run, & I don't think they have done them in 30+ years. So I will see what I have or what is available. Each person will decide what ones they want. I had opaque white arrows which are hard to see in the pictures. Blue & Orange trans starburst. White, Red, & Purple opaque. I will see what else is available from Marco Specialties for 1 1/2" arrow. Looks like they might have green trans starburst. So if you are on the list let me know your choice.

Star Gazer playfields are going in batches for printing. 1 - 6 of 40 already printed. 1 & 2 finishing clear coats. 7 - 14 going to printer next dry day. 15 - 22 end of this week. All should be printed by early March.

Seawitch playfield production will be very quick. All should be finished before June, & hopefully most already gone by early May. As the Star Gazer playfields are mostly done in the next few weeks & sent for printing.

***Seawitch playfield pre-order deadline is February 15*** Star Gazer has already closed.

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#383 5 years ago

It's going to be what is available for the arrow. 23 pairs of white opaque starburst arrows. So far 1 white, & orange request. I haven't seen a source of clear.