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Doc Pete
07-10-2003, 07:54 PM
Well, I finally ordered my Magna-matic balancer and got ready use a really nice piece of equipment. While ordering, I mentioned I was on the lawnsite forum, which prompted the people at Magna-matic to ask I give feedback on the Lawnsite about their product. Of course I told them who I was and they were all the more interested in my thoughts.
To make a long story short, the balancer arrived and after my typical close inspection of the instrument I noticed there was a very bad problem with it. Immediately I was on the phone complaining about the defective balancer, and told them they picked the wrong person to ask for feedback on Lawnsite, when it would be all bad.
Well to my surprise the people at Magna-matic overly apologized, not once but twice, and said they understood exactly how I felt. Also, they took the time to explain where the possible problem in manufacture/shipping could have occurred, instead of blaming me. Furthermore, they asked if they could compensate my disappointment with a “better product” than I originally ordered, free shipping reimbursement, and immediate shipping of the new product. With my mouth wide open I gladly said, “Yes”.
In this day and age, I felt it’s worth mentioning a company like Magna-matic that goes the extra mile to please their customers. Oh Yeah, the blade balancer works great and is simple to operate. With all of us running double blades, and now high tip speed, a good balancer is mandatory.
Thanks,
Pete O’Connor
“For Pete’s Sake Landscaping”

DLS1
07-10-2003, 10:20 PM
Hey Pete, I have never understood why someone needs a balancer. You can balance the blade on a nail. What I am missing that makes the balancers so great vs. a nail?

Doc Pete
07-10-2003, 11:17 PM
Originally posted by LSDLS
Hey Pete, I have never understood why someone needs a balancer. You can balance the blade on a nail. What I am missing that makes the balancers so great vs. a nail?

I think part of it is running doubles and high rpm. Close isn't good enough like it was years ago. Unbalanced blades rob horsepower. When you get to the bigger machines 54" and up, you can actually notice less rpm, if you have unbalanced doubles. I can tell if my blades are off by "one pass" on the grinder, by the tingle in my grips.
Pete

Magna-Matic
07-11-2003, 01:01 AM
Thank you for the kind words Pete, I was just thinking of calling you to see how you liked the balancer. I'm glad to hear that everything is in order.

NOTE about balancing

**** NEVER USE A NAIL you are doing more harm than good.

To balance you need to be and the middle point of the object. Think of a CROSSHAIR in the mounting hole of the blade.

The point of INTERSECTION of that CROSSHAIR is where you need the nail to be - well gravity doesn't allow for that.

This is why you see the CONE on our balancer.

Now if you think about how you are balancing using a nail you are actually throwing the balance worse than if you did nothing at all.

Thank you for your time,

DLS1
07-11-2003, 07:51 AM
Hey Pete, I think I saw somewhere that you have been mowing part-time for 20 years. How have you been balancing blades in the past? How much did the balancer cost with shipping costs?

Doc Pete
07-11-2003, 08:35 AM
Originally posted by LSDLS
Hey Pete, I think I saw somewhere that you have been mowing part-time for 20 years. How have you been balancing blades in the past? How much did the balancer cost with shipping costs?
Actually, I've been using a model Helicopter blade balancer that has been good, but the Magna balancer is more accurate and "consistent". For the pricing, I'd really call Magna-matic, tell them you are on the Lawnsite, read my post, and I fully expect they will take care of you.
Pete

Tvov
07-11-2003, 08:50 AM
REMOVED AT AUTHOR'S REQUEST

Magna-Matic
07-11-2003, 02:17 PM
Please take a peek at this diagram.

http://www.magna-matic.com/images/remote_use/top-view-lawnmower-blade-co.jpg


Now if you look at the CROSSHAIRS of the center hole, and then extend them outward to cut the blade in half VERTICALLY and HORZONTIALLY.

Each half of the blade must be equal to the other to have the weight (or mass) distributed over the whole part. If the mass is distributed over the whole object (blade in this case) evenly it would be in balance.

To balance an object that rotates you must balance if from the point at which it rotates. Just like the spindle hubs under your deck which the blades mount to.

Now if you could get the blade to HOVER on the nail, so that the nail would be in the INTERSECTION of the CROSSHAIRS then a nail could be used, but it would still not be accurate where frictional resistance is concerned.

Now lets think of how a blade hangs on a nail in the wall. The nail is holding the blade at the top of the hole - NOT THE CENTER.

Here is perhaps another analogy to help understand the problem with the nail in the wall.

*** How well do you think your mower would run if you took a blade with double the size mounting hole - and then mounted in off center on your deck spindle?

^^^ Also think about this - does your local auto repair shop balance your wheels & tires with a nail in the wall? Are the turbines of a jet engine balanced with a nail in the wall? ANYTHING in rotational motion must be in balance to eliminate vibration.

Why do we want to eliminate vibration?
Vibration decreases performance - Vibration damages equipment.

Most lawn mower blades spin at - at least 3000 RPM.
Your wheel on your car spins at 1000 RPM at 75 mph.

We are the originators of the lawn mower blade balancer, we also make numerous other balancers for applications of fan blades, racing clutches, racing flywheels, and much more. Since 1958 i do not know of one person who has purchased one of our balancers and returned it, because they didn't think they needed it, or that do anything for them. The only balancer returns we get are for repair/reconditioning or "rare" warranty work.

Our balancers are manufactured to last 40 + years with proper care. The retail price of the balancer is $175 - that cost over just 20 years is only $9 per year.

If there are any more questions - or clarifications desired, please continue to post here, i will be happy to explain the best i possibly can.

Thank you for your time,

AltaLawnCare
07-12-2003, 12:10 AM
Originally posted by Switchless@aol.com
Well, I finally ordered my Magna-matic balancer and got ready use a really nice piece of equipment. While ordering, I mentioned I was on the lawnsite forum, which prompted the people at Magna-matic to ask I give feedback on the Lawnsite about their product. Of course I told them who I was and they were all the more interested in my thoughts.
To make a long story short, the balancer arrived and after my typical close inspection of the instrument I noticed there was a very bad problem with it. Immediately I was on the phone complaining about the defective balancer, and told them they picked the wrong person to ask for feedback on Lawnsite, when it would be all bad.
Well to my surprise the people at Magna-matic overly apologized, not once but twice, and said they understood exactly how I felt. Also, they took the time to explain where the possible problem in manufacture/shipping could have occurred, instead of blaming me. Furthermore, they asked if they could compensate my disappointment with a “better product” than I originally ordered, free shipping reimbursement, and immediate shipping of the new product. With my mouth wide open I gladly said, “Yes”.
In this day and age, I felt it’s worth mentioning a company like Magna-matic that goes the extra mile to please their customers. Oh Yeah, the blade balancer works great and is simple to operate. With all of us running double blades, and now high tip speed, a good balancer is mandatory.
Thanks,
Pete O’Connor
“For Pete’s Sake Landscaping”

Just curious, what was wrong with it??

For you guys using nails, after the blade stops "wobbling", move it around on the nail, and it will change....the blade never "centers" on the nail. I'm saving up for a balancer.

Doc Pete
07-12-2003, 12:19 AM
Originally posted by AltaLawnCare
Just curious, what was wrong with it??

For you guys using nails, after the blade stops "wobbling", move it around on the nail, and it will change....the blade never "centers" on the nail. I'm saving up for a balancer.

What had happened is being a very busy time for the company, the balancer had been accidently dropped during shipping and handling, which dented the balancer and would not allow it to balance correctly. Naturally, a balancer that doesn't balance is not much help.
Pete

Keith
07-12-2003, 12:22 AM
I purchased one last month. I had never before balanced a lawn mower blade in all these years. I haven't had an extreme number of spindle failures, but I have had a few. I figured vibration robs power so why not try to avoid it. After using it, I can't believe how out of whack my blades were. Now I have to save up for a grinder :)


BTW Pete, they must have really dropped it good...I don't see how you could dent this thing :)

Doc Pete
07-12-2003, 12:26 AM
Originally posted by Keith
I purchased one last month. I had never before balanced a lawn mower blade in all these years. I haven't had an extreme number of spindle failures, but I have had a few. I figured vibration robs power so why not try to avoid it. After using it, I can't believe how out of whack my blades were. Now I have to save up for a grinder :)
We all know and have heard you can't see vibration problems until something breaks. With all of us overspeeding our motors, runnng doubles blades and increasing blade speed, it seems a logical step to buy a balancer.

DLS1
07-12-2003, 12:29 AM
Hey Magna-Matic guys
J. Thomas has the Magna-Matic blade balancer for $180 and also a economy balancer for $3.27.

How much better is yours vs. the $3 balancer and why is it better?

Magna-Matic
07-12-2003, 02:21 AM
Hello,

The plastic balancer for $3 - is really a homeowner toy more than anything.

1st problem - the cone is stepped - and you will find that more often than not the blades you use never seem to fit flush on any of the steps. So again we have this problem that we are not balancing from the CENTER POINT of the blade. If their cone were made like ours the blade would swivel even more than it already does on the mis-sized steps.

2nd problem - this is far from any type of real instrument or measuring tool - it is very inaccurate. The frictional resistance of this balancer is far greater than that of the accurate bearings used in MAGNA-MATIC balancers.

As I wrote this post I took my $3 balancer off my window sill next to my desk, and took some photographs to really show what this $3 balancer looks like and to show how it works.

http://www.magna-matic.com/images/remote_use/toy_balancer.jpg

http://www.magna-matic.com/images/remote_use/toy_balancer_apart.jpg

http://www.magna-matic.com/images/remote_use/toy_balancer_apart2.jpg

The first picture is of the $3 balancer sitting on a level table top - and you can even see how it does not sit evenly on its own.

See the next two pictures, the cone which is hollow or you could kind of call it "concave" sits atop the plastic point.

The way this balancer works is LITERALLY like a teeter-totter principal, but the blade will tilt side to side and back and forth. So in other words - think of sitting on a teeter-totter. You can go up and down - but in this $3 balancer teeter-totter the board you sit on (the blade) could twist left and right as well. So you have no control of what you are measuring./guaging.

One other major advantage of our balancer is that you can check balance along the full 360 degree path of motion that the mower blade moves. This also allows you to check if the blades you are using are faulty - (i.e. the hole has been stamped in the wrong place).

Our balancers are also used in the quality control departments of blade manufacturers - now of course not every blade is checked and it is only checked to a very general loose tolerance. This is because blades are a mass produced product.

Now with our balancer you can properly and/or to a higher degree of accuracy than the original manufacturer.

J.Thomas does now carry the MAGNA-MATIC MAG-1000 - it previously carried a foriegn inaccurate knock-off of our balancer. We provided them an offer to carry the ORIGINAL MAG-1000 - and they accepted. Please also note they were selling the cheaply made knock-off and listing it in their catalog as a MAGNA-MATIC product.

So - after all this information - what are your options to balance your blades.

NAIL = worst possible solution


$3 Balancer =
a step up from the nail, very inaccurate, a great homeowner toy.


Foriegn Knock-Offs of the MAG-1000 =
inaccurate, the weak magnets will not hold up commercial blades with any degree of safety. These inferior knock-offs are priced from $130 to $250 - and at that point you are far better off spending a little more and getting the ORIGINAL with the QUALITY and ACCURACY that an instrument SHOULD HAVE.


Magna-Matic MAG-1000 =
The best possible solution, with the highest level of accuracy, and quality made to last 40+ years.

Please note that the MAG-1000 is avaliable at our FACTORY ONLINE STORE for a promotional price of $158 with free shipping.
$158 PRICE FOR ONLINE STORE ORDERS ONLY!

Thank you, please keep asking if you have more questions.

Magna-Matic
07-12-2003, 02:27 AM
Pete O'Conner,

Perhaps you could explain WHY you balance the blades on your model heliocopters.

Perhaps that might also help people understand why BALANCE is so important for any rotational part.

Thank you,

Doc Pete
07-12-2003, 08:58 AM
Originally posted by Magna-Matic
Pete O'Conner,
Perhaps you could explain WHY you balance the blades on your model heliocopters.
Perhaps that might also help people understand why BALANCE is so important for any rotational part. Thank you,

Actually, from a few of the past posts, you and I realize my explaination will fall on deaf ears. However, to simplify things all we need need to do is look at how important it is to balance our car tires. Not balancing them, besides resulting in the obvious vibration in the car, also causes tire wear and frontend damage.
I hope this helps,
Pete

DLS1
07-12-2003, 10:00 AM
Hey Pete, here we go again. Let others decide if your post are good or not. You don't need the sarcasm of the deaf ear routine.
Keep posting but get rid of the constant sarcasm. Your coming across with that Napolean complex and I don't mean ice cream.

Hey Magna-matic that is an excellent post about the plastic balancers. I though it was metal from the J. Thomas catalog.

I am confused by your quote
'We provided them an offer to carry the ORIGINAL MAG-1000 - and they accepted. Please also note they were selling the cheaply made knock-off and listing it in their catalog as a MAGNA-MATIC product.'

Do they sell your product or not? I would think you would have a lawsuit against J.Thomas if they are selling a foreign product and putting your name on.

This has been a great thread.

Cooper Landscaping
07-12-2003, 10:13 AM
LSDLS-
the way i read it J. Thomas used to have a foriegn product listed as a Magna Matic and when the guys at Magna Matic found out the offered to let J Thomas sell the "real deal." So as of now it is a Magna Matic but it didnt used to be.

-Coop

Magna-Matic
07-12-2003, 08:42 PM
Ok, i suppose that sentance was not the most clear.


Here is the low down.

In March 2003 we attended the MGIA Expo in Novi MI, J.Thomas was also there exhibiting, and so we picked up a catalog. We were suprised to see that they showed a picture of the foreign knock-off of our balancer but advertised as a MAGNA-MATIC balancer.

We notified J.Thomas of their catalog mistake, and offered them to carry our balancer instead.

SO as of May 2003 J.Thomas carries MAGNA-MATIC brand balancers. But still be watchful - if it does not say MAGNA-MATIC on the balancer it is not one of ours.

One thing that should also be remembered about J.Thomas and any other catalog company that sells parts is that they are usually in the 2nd tear of distribution.

What does that mean?

Here is the break down of the chain of supply.

Manufacturer ---> Stens ---> J.Thomas ---> YOU

Now you can see how the things get sold. The 4 big companies of distribution are: (in no special order)

Stens - Rotary - Frederick Mfg (silver streak - OREGON) - Prime Line

These guys buy large quanties, and then sell to lower level distributors who then sell to you.

All of these companies used to carry the MAGNA-MATIC brand balancers, but now only FREDERICK and PRIME LINE carry the MAG-1000. Within the last 6-8 years Rotary and Stens have picked up the foriegn knock-offs so they could slightly increase profit margins - AND sell and inferior product at the same price a MAGNA-MATIC is or higher. And since the knock-offs are made to look similar to ours they feed off our brand name. One other aspect that made the foriegn knock-offs cheaper was exchange currency rates.

We have seen these knock-offs being sold from $130 to $250.

SEE MORE INFO HERE
http://www.magna-matic.com/support/consumer_alerts/balancer_alert.html

This is the same problem we have with our sharpeners - since we do not want to sacrifice our quality and performance we cannot sell our sharpeners to the LARGE DISTRIBUTORS like RBG can, because they want a super cheap popcorn item that they can sell in volume. We make equipment to last a lifetime, and to perform.

This is why we have our factory direct sales and online store - we also have a small network of resellers (lawn mower dealers, etc.)

This way we can provide high quality products at the lowest possible prices.

--- One last thing --- yes sometimes the $3 balancers are metal, but the are most often plastic.

Thank you,

Doc Pete
07-13-2003, 09:43 AM
Originally posted by Magna-Matic
All of these companies used to carry the MAGNA-MATIC brand balancers, but now only FREDERICK and PRIME LINE carry the MAG-1000. Within the last 6-8 years Rotary and Stens have picked up the foriegn knock-offs so they could slightly increase profit margins - AND sell and inferior product at the same price a MAGNA-MATIC is or higher. And since the knock-offs are made to look similar to ours they feed off our brand name. One other aspect that made the foriegn knock-offs cheaper was exchange currency rates.

As a maker of a sellable product for the Radio Control trade, I’ve also dealt with USA and import copies of my product. While some consumers look to save a few pennies by buying the cheapest items, my original post brings to light one of the reasons to buy from reputable company with good customer support.
Pete
http://petalrc.com/
Makers of quality R/C transmitter trays

smallengineguy
06-14-2005, 03:24 PM
doc pete, i have been working for a shop for many years but now i have decided to go at it on my own, i'm looking for the few tools i need that are not in my arsonal. one is the mag-1000 that i had at the shop where i worked, it was a great tool and you just can't be with out. but starting out on my own i just don't know if i can pay for the $200 price tag that magna-matic wants for it. i would like to start my new business with as little overhead as possiable and the other tools i need and rent for teh building have put me in a pinch. is there any one out there with a used one or something tha you know of, or will magna-matic be good enough to help out with a refubished one or something?

Doc Pete
06-14-2005, 04:38 PM
Hey Pete, here we go again. Let others decide if your post are good or not. You don't need the sarcasm of the deaf ear routine.
Keep posting but get rid of the constant sarcasm. Your coming .

Ah.... Now I know why you emailed about maybe being too hard on me!! (G).
Actually, since this was an old post, my comment was aimed more at "the powers that be" for continuing to let "UL" constantly ruin many good posts, with his incorrect information given for one purpose only, to confuse and discredit.
Hey, we just had that post the other day where numbnuts (Fareway) tried to start his typical screwed up post about the worse drought ever. Thankfully, the moderators pulled it before it started to snowball.
Pete

PS...... My Magnamatic is still working great and with 700 hours on my 54" machine with 25hp, the clutch and spindles are still like new....Balancing does have it's rewards....Thanks, Magnamatic.
Pete

Magna-Matic
06-21-2005, 12:12 PM
Hello,

Feel free to call and check stock if refurbished units are available. Sometimes if the customer does not mind a long wait we can supply a refurb balancer.

Thank you,

Doc Pete
06-21-2005, 12:19 PM
PS...... My Magnamatic is still working great and with 700 hours on my 54" machine with 25hp, the clutch and spindles are still like new....Balancing does have it's rewards....Thanks, Magnamatic.
Pete

If I didn't say, I've been running doubles since the machine was new......
Pete

Lawn Sharks
07-02-2005, 09:39 AM
Great thread. Makes me want to buy one. Magna Matic, You said they are $158 on your site as a promo but your site shows a higher price. Is a coupon code needed?

Thanks for all the info.

Lawn Sharks
07-02-2005, 09:41 AM
Great thread. Makes me want to buy one. Magna Matic, You said they are $158 on your site as a promo but your site shows a higher price. Is a coupon code needed?

Thanks for all the info.


I feel like an idiot. I just realized that I was reading a post from 2003! Sorry for the dumb question.

ALarsh
07-29-2005, 06:16 PM
Any chance you can put that $158 price in to effect for a little while? I know its a long shot but I am thinking about ordering a balancer but I don't really want to dish out $200+. Thanks.

jtodd71
10-19-2009, 09:21 PM
Yea I would also like one but 200 seems a little high.

Magna-Matic
10-20-2009, 12:45 PM
Hello All,

We've held over the $198 price for near 4 years now with no increase to keep costs down for the customer.

Please keep in mind this is a USA made instrument grade tool - if you take decent care of it - it will EASILY last you more than 40 years.

We have been manufacturing the MAG-1000 and other balancing instruments since 1958 - and we still get units in from the 60's and 70's for light refurbishing.

So the $200 over 40 years is quite inexpensive if you review the cost as a business.

Thank you,

Green Pastures
10-20-2009, 09:04 PM
Hey Pete, I have never understood why someone needs a balancer. You can balance the blade on a nail. What I am missing that makes the balancers so great vs. a nail?


Please tell me you're not serious!

jtodd71
10-25-2009, 09:50 PM
I got my Balancer Friday. I mounted it today and balanced my blades and I have to say I am impressed. I can feel that my mower runs stronger and smoother. If you are thinking about getting one I say do it.

big_belly4ever
10-25-2009, 10:25 PM
[I] got a balancer and sharpener couple months ago, big difference from bench grinder and plastic balancer. Glade i spent the money. less time sharpening blades. I wouldn't go back to the old way. I'm MAGNA happy. LOL