AVS Forum Addicted Member
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Buffalo NY
Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
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I just discovered this a few weeks ago. I called their number and was told they were looking for another manufacture to produce these units since the two Chineese companies that supplied these raised prices, making them uncompetitive. As of now, no word on any new source yet. I hope they find someone since I still feel it's a decent buy in spite of the 'quirks'.
Having said that, I did run into a problem 2 years after I purchased my unit. To make a long story short, five of the six screws that hold the main motor/gear plate to the housing loosened and fell out inside the housing causing the circuit board on the motor and the main control board to short out. The rotor stopped responding. I ran some checks without removing the rotor and called the company. We came to the conclusion that it was the control board. I ordered a replacement for $18 (plus shipping). I also ordered a whole replacement rotor for $38 as a spare. When I received the order I removed the rotor and noticed something rattleing around inside. I had no idea what it was untill I removed the bottom plate. From all the recent windy days we have had in the past year or so, the constant rocking back and forth loosened those screws and all but one fell out. One 'cap' on the manin board completely broke off, but something else went south since replaceing that disn't solve the problem. I replaced the board with the new one, but the motor still didn't respond.
I called the company back and told them even though it was one year over the warrenty period I fealt I shouldn't have to take the 'hit' for this. He aggreed and sent me another rotor at no charge. I used the rotor I purchased to replace the orginal and now have a spare.
He admitted this has happened before. There was a black substance on the screw threads which was suppose to prevent this, but it seemed more like dried grease. I removed the screws on the replacement and used lock washers this time and tightened them down as best I could. I'm hoping that will do the trick.
I dissasembled the orginal rotor and I canm report all the gears are metal! The ball bearings are in a 'race' that prevents them from dropping out. Unlike the orginal Channel master design where only grease holds them in palvce (if your lucky), these can't fall out so you can't loose them. They are also twice the size of the CM design. The only reason one would have to remove that plate is to replace the motor itself since the screws that hold it in place are only accessible from inside. I can't see any way any of those gears would fail.
Thre was concern regarding the small motor. With the gear reduction, I really don't see a issue here. It's not lifting the antenna, it's just turning it. One note of caution, I don't know if I would use this rotor mounted upside down in an attic (hanging from the rafters) since the 'clip' that holds the main shaft in place isn't made to support all that weight. The CM design is somewhat better in this repsect.
Recording free OTA TV for 'time shifting' has been here since 1975. Will there be DVR's to do the same when ATSC3 obsoletes existing DVR's??