I know Van Eck sells the green guide just under the sprocket near the rear of the machine, and I'm wondering if that's the only one on the ST-1200HD that is known for scratching. Mine is still in good shape, but you never know when these things will start to scratch. I know Van Eck sells several different green guides for the GS-1200, so is it correct to assume that he only makes the ones for both machines that have the "scratch" reputation? Also, are the ones he makes much less prone to wear? If so, I might pick up one and install it, just to be on the safe side.
I have also read over the years of people removing many of the green guides on the ST-1200 models and turning them into manual threaders. No one has gone into more detail, and the parts are certainly easy enough to remove, but obviously additional rollers would have to be installed around the machine to compensate. Easier said than done, I think, since you would not only have to source rollers, but also fabricate a way to attach them. I have enough junker machines to source from, but I'm not sure how to proceed after that. Also, my one and only manual threader, an Elmo FP standard 8 only machine, has "clips" around the sprocket that are unlocked for threading, and then locked again when threading is complete. I assume something like that would also have to be fabricated for the Elmo ST-1200.
And again, my main concern is scratching - and if Van Eck's part for the ST-1200 is much less prone to wear, I'd probably be better off just installing one and calling it a day.