Important lessons learned from a new Stern owner


Site Supporter
Sep 2, 2019
I use a sponge to prevent the balls from coming out. I am really good at remembering to put it in. I am remarkably rubbish at remembering to take it out. So that's the glass completely off again. I
That happens pretty much every time.

Same for me, always remembering AFTER the glass has gone on. I have two cloths for the procedure but have been known to use socks.


Site Supporter
Jul 21, 2011
Belfast, Northern Ireland
keep a sponge or cloth or whatever you fancy in your toolbox, with an elastic around it (keeps it neat) then when you need to bung up your hole 🧐 take the elastic off it and put it around the playfield glass.

then when you go to put the glass back in the elastic will remind you to remove your cloth or sponge.
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Oct 1, 2017
Bath, UK
I've used the broom method too.
The sterns slides are just pathetic aren't they? I hate the bump to slide them back in. I see that one of the mod makers sells something to eliminate that bump, I just wish stern would redesign them.
I could never bring myself to do the whole “jolt playfield over the bump to get it sliding again” move, just felt weird to me and unnecessarily abusive?

Probably in my head I know, and I’m sure the ops do it all the time and cause no issues, but I always used to reach down the back of the playfield and lift it over the bump. A bit uncomfortable and inconvenient, but no jolt.

Really crappy rails system. B/W had a much better system in TZ which was 20+ years older. Although they did have that horrible one sided prop system, I used it once and saw the playfield creak and twist under its own weight, never again.

It does seem strange that there has been no real innovation in these areas in all that time. As said above the Thunderbirds system is probably the best version around, but there is plenty of room for improvement. Gas assisted lift as said before seems like an obvious one.
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