Harris/Gates support

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Shane
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Harris/Gates support

Post by Shane » Sun Dec 10, 2017 12:41 pm

Any advice on how to get through to Gates/Harris support on the weekend?
Mike Shane, CBRE
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Deep Thought
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Re: Harris/Gates support

Post by Deep Thought » Sun Dec 10, 2017 1:41 pm

If (888) 840-4622 didn't get you to someone then their "24/7 support" isn't.

You can also try support@gatesair.com.
Mark Mueller • Mueller Broadcast Design • La Grange, IL • http://www.muellerbroadcastdesign.com

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Shane
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Re: Harris/Gates support

Post by Shane » Sun Dec 10, 2017 7:20 pm

Tried both. So far, no love.
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Deep Thought
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Re: Harris/Gates support

Post by Deep Thought » Sun Dec 10, 2017 9:32 pm

How far the mighty have fallen. I got into a little argument with them a couple NABs ago about this very thing. Voicemail is not "24/7 Support". Their response was that their equipment didn't NEED to have someone available 24/7. I decided right then based on that and some previous encounters involving "no we don't support that but I'll be glad to transfer you to sales to buy a new one" never to recommend their products to clients.

Assholes.
Mark Mueller • Mueller Broadcast Design • La Grange, IL • http://www.muellerbroadcastdesign.com

grich
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Re: Harris/Gates support

Post by grich » Mon Dec 11, 2017 10:29 am

My last contact with GatesAir was a Z5CD call a year ago. It was at night, but I don't recall if it was a weekend. Called the same number I have for decades...217-222-8200. Walter called me back in a few minutes.

I remember the days when the guy that answered the phone overnight could talk you through some troubleshooting before passing you along to the next level techs, and could take a parts order.

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Shane
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Re: Harris/Gates support

Post by Shane » Mon Dec 11, 2017 10:57 pm

We did finally get response today. I remember that 217 number now. We’ll make a note of that to see if it’s any better next time.

Meanwhile, I have a new slogan for Nautel: “Next time, Nautel.”
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Re: Harris/Gates support

Post by Scott.Cason » Tue Jan 16, 2018 12:03 pm

I had a similar conversation with a Harris rep. I took them off my spec list. When a station owners wants me to spec a new transmitter for them, it's Nautel or someone else builds it.


Deep Thought wrote:
Sun Dec 10, 2017 9:32 pm
How far the mighty have fallen. I got into a little argument with them a couple NABs ago about this very thing. Voicemail is not "24/7 Support". Their response was that their equipment didn't NEED to have someone available 24/7. I decided right then based on that and some previous encounters involving "no we don't support that but I'll be glad to transfer you to sales to buy a new one" never to recommend their products to clients.

Assholes.
LaGrange Communications - http://www.lagrange-com.com
Froggy 95.9 - http://froggy959.net/

fm-engineer
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Re: Harris/Gates support

Post by fm-engineer » Tue Jan 16, 2018 9:27 pm

Kind of a shame to hear this about Gates because they are a true American company. I like the FAX transmitter, LDMOS amps, etc. I've been told the design was rooted from the military side before the split with Harris. With that being said, my company has moved away from Gates to Nautel. I have an AM Nautel that's been on the air for 11 years except for occasional overnight maintenance. Just keep the air filters changed. Also, getting ready for a new GV FM install. I've had some issues Nautel's low power VS stuff. To be fair, I'm not sure the VS is actually made by Nautel. Their cheaper stuff may be outsourced.

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Re: Harris/Gates support

Post by Deep Thought » Wed Jan 17, 2018 12:21 am

Nautel makes the VS series, but some of the innards are OEM'd, mostly the power supplies of which they had a really bad batch of awhile back.
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Re: Harris/Gates support

Post by RodeoJack » Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:55 am

I have mixed feelings about Harris.

Last year, I did a re-freq on a DX-10. It involved changing capacitor types, and that required different mounting plates. They went out to the floor a couple of times and sent back pictures. It took some time to get the right combo, and the crystals took well over 2 months to get. Otherwise, the process ended well and I was reasonably satisfied with their support.

More recently, I had issues with a Gates Five. They sent me some parts, but one of them, a simple connector bracket, they couldn't find anywhere. I wound up making one. What bothered me was them telling me the transmitter, having been purchased in '03, had been out of manufacture for 10 years or so and they didn't think they had more than 40% of its parts left... buy a new one. When I'm sitting at home with a stiff drink in my hand, I imagine being the one to tell that to one of my clients!

By comparison, I have a Power Rock that needed some repairs to its fiber optics. Continental had updated versions ready to go and gave me no flak at all about keeping a vintage rig going. That transmitter is running daily in full-time service.

Sure is a different world...

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Re: Harris/Gates support

Post by radio_guru » Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:28 pm

Problem with CEC is they no longer have any 24/7 support at all. It's 9-5, leaving out noon-1 for lunch. The guys there are still top notch. But the reality is they're out of making new FM and AM broadcast TX's and are there just to support what's out there (besides building big shortwave TX's).

Someone commented Nautel isn't a US company. Well...it is in part. While ownership and engineering are all done in Halifax, don't forget they have a Bangor, Maine factory where a lot of the lower power AM product is built and parts are shipped from (in addition to Memphis.)

And, my eyes-on view of their Halifax plant showed me they were building VS TX's there. Most everything they use mechanically is fabricated by them in their metal shops. But I think they farm out the PCB manufacture aspect however. And their switcher supplies are OEM'd. Which I'm not happy about in the least. I understand why. But that doesn't make it any better when you can't repair them in the field and there are none in domestic stock.

Never the less, they're the only real game in town.

Quincy Tin Works lost me after a TX fire in a three week old TX and they said to call our insurance adjuster to buy another TX. The cause was traced back to a manufacturing defect based on a bad design. They ended up replacing both TX's on that order with corrected design TX's a few months later. Never mind the idiocy of the sales and tech support people stating we'd never need to change the Z plane in the Z series TX's. HAH...they may be right. We've never changed. But they sure have...

RG

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