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Brunswick  Synthetics

A Disastrous Investment

     Southgate Lanes, built in 1958, has been scoring on wooden lanes since inception. The bowling alley was purchased from the Dailey's in 2020 by Derek Dukes & Brandon Falk, who have been managing the center fifteen years prior to the purchase. 

      Dukes & Falk decide that the screen and coating of the last and resurfacing is a cost that they could avoid by installing synthetic lanes. They met with Brunswick and AMF sales reps to try to weigh out options on the installation. The two new owners decided to make an investment with Brunswick. Brunswick's "Better Together" philosphy, stand behind their product warranty, and site visits with satisfied customers made Brunswick the clear choice for Southgate Lanes. 


May 2021


Initial Installation.

Summer leagues begin with a better than previous scoring pace and a visually perfect installation. 

July 2021

Problems occur

After 6 weeks of summer leagues, we start to notice scores declining, ball reaction is hard to maintain. Contact with Kegel has been constant to try to stay ahead from the bizarre ball reaction issues. We have also started notice odd gapping between panels, some of the gaps have closed competely, some of the gaps have opened to the size of a quarter.

August 2021

Contact is made

Contact is made with Brunswick Salesman Tony Bisesi & installer Brian Sashko about problems with panel swelling and shrinking, gaps between panels that have closed and also other areas that were becoming trip hazards because of swelled panels. Approach panels had either closed gaps or raised to the point of almost an 1/8 gap. Most of the lane panel spacing had actually closed completely and the caulk had to be shaved off a second time already. In several spots, the lane panels were almost to the point where they were flush instead of gradually decreasing in height from the foul line to the pin deck (videos and photos available).

September 2021

Site visits

Brian Sashko makes a site visit and is in agreement there are some problems he has not seen and we should contact Tony Bisesi to make a site visit himself. During Brian Sashko's visit, he re-levels multiple panels and fixes some of the approach panel problems to avoid trip hazards.

December 2021

Site visits

Brian has to make another site visit to fix two of the approach panels that were causing bowlers to not be able to slide through the uphill T Panel

February 2022

Blaming the Machine

Constant contact with Kegel, Jason Karnuth (Ace Mitchells Lane Machine Expert) has been maintained throughout the season, scores continue to be a roller coaster. Battling obvious topography and surface friction issues. Southgate managed to stump lane pattern experts and decides that maybe there is an issue with their Kegel Ion lane machine. Any part that could possibly be causing the problems are replaced, all the volume checks on the lane machine are again made, clean only passes are done with perfect results.

April 2022

Something has to be done

Milan Vranesevich meets Brian Sashko at Southgate Lanes to discuss issues and check humidity levels under the lanes. The humidity levels check out as safe levels and no hazard or cause to the quality of the lanes. An order is written up and signed to replace swelled approach panels and a plan to pull, trim and reinstall lane panels and other approach panels is established. 

June 2022

Legal Action

Southgate Lanes Lawyer, Mandy M Gerken, Esq. sends a letter to Brunswick, trying to help push the panel replacement and reinstallation through.

November 2022

Lanes Received

Southgate Lanes received the replacement fill panels. The panels were stored safely inside the building.

May 2023


Brian Sashko and his crew replaces all fill panels. The crew pulls, trims, re-levels and re-installs all other panels. 

June 2023

Southgate Reopens

Southgate Lanes reopens for the summer. All lane and approach panels were reinstalled. All panels that were warped beyond repair were replaced. The scoring pace has went back up, the first four weeks of summer league are going amazing.

July 2023


Scores Fluctuating week to week, we are having the issue of creating an out of bounds when we apply any oil outside of 9 board. 2-2 loads are almost out of the question completely. Upon inspection spacing between approach panels are closed in some areas, and uneven in others. Lane panel gaps are closing and pressing the caulk out. Ball return doors are all bowed. The lanes have a visual appearance of "waffling" to the naked eye. 

August 2023

Contact with Brian Sashko

Brian Sasko is contacted and makes a site visit at Southgate Lanes on August 29th 2023. Instantly calls Tony Bisesi, he lets Tony know that there is still a problem with the original panels and he needs to make a visit to Southgate Lanes to make a plan for how this will be corrected. During Brian Sashko's visit, he repairs a few of the approach panels to correct a few unleveled issues

September 2023

Contact with Tony

Tony Bisesi makes a site visit to Southgate Lanes on September 6th, 2023. Tony and I discuss possibilities for a cause of the problems. Tony Suggests we try to get a humidity monitor for under the lane beds so we can track humidity under the lanes for a period of time. Note that Southgate Lanes is a small ten lane center that is temperature controlled year round. 

October 2023

Two week Humidity Test

Email to Brunswick

Good morning,
I wanted to reach out to you all with an update on the situation at Southgate Lanes. We have done a two week test with humidity loggers per Chuck Heuer's suggestion, I have attached the files. I had a conversation with Chuck to go over the results on 10/30/23, he suggested that I speak with an HVAC specialist about getting our humidity levels under control and we wait until the summer to do another round of testing. I asked Mr. Heuer if he had seen any of the photos and videos of our issues for the last two years and he had not upon making these suggestions. I am going to be sending Chuck some photos and videos of the panel movement to get him up to speed (Even though Milen said himself that the photos didn't really do it justice).

I really don't want to sit on our lane situation for the rest of the season as we continue to struggle with maintaining a consistent ball reaction for our league bowlers. In speaking with Kegel since August with help on the pattern, Kristijonas Sergejevas from Kegel said in his most recent email: "It does sound like you may have some lane surface/topography issues."

I do have a few questions about the humidity readings:
1. If Brunswick had these readings before the initial installation in 2021, would I have been advised not to install the lanes until the humidity got "under control" based on these readings?
2. Do any of you consider these readings to be dangerous to the quality of the panels?
3. We only got 57 out of 4,320 readings over 60% in two weeks, with a maximum reading of 63%. If that percentage over the tolerance causes a problem, why wasn't a humidity test done prior to installation?

(The Omega website says that the loggers (OM-92) has a tolerance of +/- 3%.)

October 2023

Contact with Tony

Contact is made with the sales rep Tony Bisesi, We notified Tony that we will be taking steps to get problems fixed legally if we need to. We have decided to try and make contact with anyone who is shopping for lanes to let them know what we have went through for the last two years. Being a small ten lane center, this was a huge investment for us. The "set it and forget it," "never worry about lanes again," "increase scores" promises we received is far from what we have received.

November 2023

Contacted Ace Mitchell

We contacted our bowling distributer (Ace Mitchell) about trying out a newer rebuilt oil machine. This machine will go into use January 2024. Our Kustodian ION has been rebuilt and has went under regular pump volume checks and maintenance, but the newer machines are a little better at hiding topography issues. We don't know if it will be a fix, but if the investment can bring league scores up, we are going to more than likely make the purchase.

December 2023

Contact with Brunswick's CEO.

Thanks to a few Brunswick employees (not in the capital equipment division), we had a 55 minute conference call with Brunswick's CEO, he informed me that he was completely unaware of this issue until we made the post on our facebook page about it in November 2023. He informed me that he will be sending out a crew after the first of the year to pull panels and bring measuring equipment to try to get to the bottom of this, and also come up with a solution. 
He asked that we give Brunswick 30 days to try to solve the issues.

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Contact us for photos, videos and references about our situation.


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