Constantly hearing about the things that need to change, made easier or even made fair for “everyone”. We are suppose to buy in that we should look down on those who have made fortunes and guilt them in to giving it all to those that haven’t.
You know the viscous 1%ers, the Satan’s of the world, that apparently hold all answers, power and money. Some are so busy trying to bring down others, they don’t notice how high their own soap box has become. Isn’t it from their own wealth and success that they now have the platform? That’s a bone to be chewed for sure but not today.
All these new proposed (and mandatory in some cases) changes are just not how we operate in this country. Expecting someone to be forced to do anything just isn’t productive. You can’t pick winners and losers in our society. The salt of our country is based on the unlimited possibilities, not the entrenchment of single sided views.
You know why most “renewable energy products” aren’t strong enough to stand on their own without the government funding. It isn’t because of anything other than the fact that it’s a forced concept. You can’t force creativity. You can’t force an ideology.
In a capitalistic market, you have to have something that the market wants and can actually compete with the existing markets -WITHOUT the government prop up strategy.. It has to make sense (or cents if you will). Think about it, why would anyone want to spend massive amounts of money on solar or wind for a 30 year break even stance? Plus the irony of this is only the very wealthy can afford that type of program and yet at the same time they are being attacked by those who are forcing the renewable’s – you know those awful 1%ers again…. interesting..
I’m not against renewable’s in the least bit – I just believe it should come to market organically. That is how we come up with our greatest inventions and technology gains!
Like I said you can’t force creativity. The greatness comes from the blood, sweat, tears and fears. It’s an organic process and to try and force it only insures it will fail. Solyndra anyone? Some of the greatest advancements in technology started in a garage and they weren’t doing it because they were being paid or anything other than the desire and limitless potential. It was all for the “potential and possibility”…Passion and greatness comes when most everyone else is sleeping. Being told a product will fail or can’t be done will fuel the fire of creativity 100 times more than making it a “mandatory success”. The potential is what keeps creators creative. The challenges that all products have to surpass in order to become successful must not be bypassed if you want long term success. As my engineers remind me daily, great products have to stand up to arguments, if they cannot stand up to the arguments they will never make it in the market.
Coming full circle on this post, if we keep those creators down with threats of limiting their potential and possibilities we are as a society limiting our creativity. If society is told that the 1%er’s are Satan and should give up everything, then where are you going to get the next great invention? Who is going to be willing to sacrifice everything to gain mediocrity? I guess my point is, if you really want results, stop threatening those who are the 1%er’s because for some, that potential is what stokes their fire. The endless possibilities is what sometimes stokes their fire.. Being able to change their world can be what keeps them up every night working.
Here’s an idea, stop telling people what they have to, but rather tell them it can’t be done and watch them prove you wrong. You can’t force creativity…..
Border Security seems to be on everyone’s mind recently so I figured I would cover this topic slightly…….Since we have been assisting countries secure and monitor their borders all over the world for over a decade now, we are asked about what is really going on at the US border. .
“Is it as bad as some say or not?” Short answer – it has been bad for quite some time and it’s only getting worse. Over the years the dynamics have drastically changed at the border. No longer is it only an issue of just illegal immigration – its drug trafficking, firearm trafficking, human smuggling, money trafficking and the list goes on. If you have spent any time on the border – one thing becomes crystal clear….It’s no place to spend time and the border agents have their work cut out. The agents we deal with daily are great people, they are very committed to doing what they can with the tools they have. They are forced to deal with a very diverse and complex problem, every shift. Maybe they are going to apprehend drug cartel or MS13 members, have a high speed chase or respond to a rescue beacon, they just never know.
How have we helped? Our wireless systems have brought an entirely new level of monitoring and response for border agents and border police worldwide. Different countries do have specific goals/directives but regardless, we have been able to assist them in meeting and exceeding those goals. One of the biggest advantages to our systems is we can be extremely fluid with software/hardware to meet certain requirements that may only apply to a single country. I can’t go into detail for security reasons, but lets just say we assist them in ways that only we can and only our system can perform in ways they require..
We actually came up with that tag after we heard what agents were saying. As countries switched to our wireless cameras and sensors for their border monitoring, the first thing we heard was they no longer respond blindly. At first we were a little perplexed as to what they meant but quickly understood as we discussed it in detail.
Prior to implementing our systems, agents would get a notification from a field sensor that something “triggered it”. Think of being an agent and getting a text saying sensor 341 was triggered – that’s all you get…. Say the sensor was 45 miles from your current location and now you have to respond without knowing what triggered the sensor. So you drive for an hour and half, arrive and see if you can figure out what triggered the sensor. Was it an animal, false trigger or was it a “bad guy”? Since you didn’t receive any other information other than that you had to figure it out on your own by searching for clues at location. It was a very archaic and the agents were becoming very complacent with sensor “triggers” as more times than not it was an animal or a false trigger (rain/weather for example). So once agents started using our BuckEye Cam wireless system, they were no longer responding blind. They knew the instant they received the notification from their BuckEye Cams how they would respond because they had a picture or video included. The system took all the guesswork out of what was triggering their sensors. Many agents have told us our systems have put the excitement and drive back into their jobs. As you can imagine, it’s very difficult to remain excited about responding to “another unknown sensor trigger” when you don’t know what set it off. So after a while you just lose interest in the sensors because they were always crying wolf. Once they first started using the BuckEye Cam System and began actually SEEING what was triggering sensors they told us it was a paradigm shift. All of the sudden they were “back in the game”. They were excited to know what they were responding to and were prepared when they arrived. The other side of this was they were now able to weed out all the “no response needed” triggers which ended up saving them countless hours and hundreds of miles traveled every week. I can’t tell you how many agents have told us this same scenario over and over and over with great excitement. They were extremely motivated to be back in the game.
They also explained to us the advantage of our systems over their fixed tower systems they currently used. Basically, the fixed tower systems are just that, fixed.. The cameras on those towers can pan tilt and zoom and see for miles, but they can’t be moved. They typically had operators on the other end monitoring them 24/7 constantly viewing them waiting for something to happen. As we have been told on numerous occasions to defeat the camera towers, you need 1 guy with a radio and decent set of binoculars. He waits for the camera to “look away” and then they call in the crossing. The difference with our portable systems is they can be constantly moved around or they can sit in an area you just never know where they are. They can sit undisturbed, patiently waiting for months with no activity, then when the activity starts, agents get notified immediately. This ability gives the agents a huge advantage of the unknown…. Maybe there are cameras hidden on the obscure trail in the middle of the mountains or maybe not. The more cameras the agents have deployed, the more advantage they have – they can see travel direction, speed, number of people in the group – are they armed, carrying drugs, etc. you get the picture – literally.
I get asked all the time about our company, how long have we been in business, how big our we, how many employees do we have and so on.
We are a small company located in Athens Ohio or “Appalachia” as it is known. We have been in business since the mid 80’s and are a SBA and HUBZONE company.. We have 13 full time employees, Mike Hart, being the newest guy with just over 2 months of service and Eric Householder being here the longest at just over 22 years. With only a couple of exceptions, people who come to work for ATSI tend to stay here for a very long time. For example, prior to Mike Hart coming to work for us, Levi Boring was the last “new guy” being here just over 3 1/2 years. Hailee has over 5 years, and the rest of the employee pool ranges from 10 years to 22 years of service. So as you can see people stay with the company for a very long time.
We run a very tight, relaxed, drama free ship here…. Sounds strange, but everyone here knows their job (very well!) and basically sets their own schedule. We are highly productive without all the hype and stress. It is a very unique place to work and that isn’t by accident but rather by design.
Our Electrical Engineering staff consists of Jeff McKnight (EE) – SR Engineering Manager and Genna Kiryukhin (EE). Both of our engineers are highly educated (Graduates of Ohio University and both hold Masters Degrees) with over 55 years combined actual engineering experience. This is how we write our own code, design and develop our own products from start to finish. This means our products remain up to date unlike other manufacturers that take a design and then just build it. We take a design and make that a starting point not the finish line. By keeping our product fluid, we can improve as we go in most cases without having to change any hardware. This process keeps us ahead of the curve not behind the curve.
Our most senior staff member is Eric householder. Eric plays a vital role in our company managing inventory flow, invoicing, as well as engineering and production support. Basically nothing comes in or goes out without Eric’s stamp on it….
Steven Beckner handles the majority of the tester calibration, service and repair. Steven also assist with BuckEye Cam products and MAC assistance when needed. The test equipment side of things keeps Steven extremely busy.
Tim Smith have been with the company going on 17 years now. Tim is over our IT dept, writes all the MAC code and also assists Steven with tester calibration and service.
Ben Hartley handles Test Equipment Sales and most of the Overseas sales for BuckEye Cam. Ben started with the company over 20 years ago and has worked up from a technician’s position into sales. Ben is one of 3 sales people we have on staff so if you call in for sales there is a good chance you will speak to Ben.
Hailee Hart also handles Test Equipment sales, BuckEye Cam sales as well as service orders too. She also assists in production when needed at times too… If you call in, there is a good chance you will speak with Hailee.
Becky White also does BuckEye Cam Sales (US and Foreign Government orders GSA, fedbid, etc.). She also helps in production when needed (everyone gets to help in production from time to time!).
Tom Spiller, Levi Boring and Mike Hart all work mainly on the BuckEye Cam side of things. Handling production, service and the nationwide BuckEye Cam setups. They all work together making sure production requirements are being met while taking care of service and troubleshooting when needed.
As for me? I just ride around on a horse looking at my phone….
So what makes BuckEye Cam different than others?
That’s an open ended question that when asked, usually there is a point to be made either one side or the other.
What makes us different? Well usually the biggest point is that we have been in business since 1985. In our industry, that’s unheard of….. Most companies in our industry are moving on 2 year cycles. They pop up, hang around for 2 years and then disappear..
Knowing that most want a flashy “we participated in the moon landing” sort of answer, only to find out one of our biggest differences is that we have been in business basically forever, is less than dazzling. But in reality it is a big deal.
What good is a “lifetime warranty” if the company offering it is going to be out of business next year?
Yes, we service what we sell…..
We actually have a real life service department that actually performs repairs. We actually have trained technicians that specialize in our wireless products that will answer the phone, respond to emails and online chat’s. That kind of makes us different.
Remote assistance – in the rare chance you have an issue that we can’t seem to figure out over the phone or via email we also offer free remote assistance. So, if you require remote assistance, we can and then just walk through it together.
We design and manufacturer everything we sell…..
Seems strange to have to say it but it does need to be said. We have real engineers on staff that are constantly working on improving our wireless systems. This is extremely important because as with most electronic devices regular updates and improvements are required. Think of your smart phone and how often you get an update from them. We do the same thing – as a matter of fact we have an entire page devoted to firmware and software updates for all our products. And since we are wireless, you can choose to have the updates performed automatically so all your equipment in the field will have the latest firmware. That is a huge deal…. It’s pretty common to receive a new feature on your existing products, just with a free firmware update.. I’m not aware of anyone offering that….
It is extremely common for “new camera companies” to show up and start promoting their “brand new camera” with all “new features”. But when they actually hit the market, they are really no different than all the other “new companies” that have gone out of business, because they all get the same design from overseas – Then have it put in a slightly different enclosure and call it theirs… Seen it time and time again…. The main problem is intellectual property being held in China is for sale…. anyone can buy and make it their own…. What we have learned is if you want to stay in this business you have to design and manufacture everything yourself. This is what keeps us ahead of the competition. Sure, we have people trying to replicate our equipment and steal our ideas but it is way more difficult than just putting the hardware in a box (but don’t tell them)…
We write our own code and software.
This is a big one… probably the biggest. Having complete control over our entire product line is what really separates us from everyone else. This keeps us current and always keeps our customers VERY happy as they will never get stuck with a faulty system ever. If you look at the typical camera “manufacturer”, they receive their shipment of cameras in their pretty retail packaging. Everyone one of them made exactly alike – and then they find out they have an issue that causes failures in the field. So, they have thousands of cameras that all have the same issue, all sealed up ready to be sold. This is why so many camera companies go out of business.
We are constantly testing all the systems as they go through production. Since we designed it, we know how to test it and how to fix any issues that may come up during production. Having complete control of the process makes a huge difference. This applies to not only the product firmware but also the software. Software has to be able to operate on a large variety of platforms including MAC and Windows. We normally receive advance copies of the next operating system to be released by either MAC or Windows so we can test our software to make sure it is completely compatible. There’s just a lot more to it than having a website….
Bottom line is we have always done things differently because our product line demands it. We would have never gotten to where we have today if we wouldn’t have made our own roads. It is what we still do today. It’s not the easiest route but it is the best way to get there.
Having been in this “industry” longer than I care to admit (makes me seem old) it always seems to surprise most people when I give them a glimpse “behind the curtain” so to speak about the hunting “industry”.
I can recall a time early on when I was giving trail camera seminars at trade shows, there was still some loyalty left in the industry. The big name guys were also at these same shows giving seminars and meeting with the crowds. At that time in the industry they stood behind a product because they believed in it not because they were being paid. There was almost a pride in their opinion and it mattered to them that they believed in a product before they would even think about being associated with the product. The industry strives to get acceptance from these experienced industry experts by producing a superior product, not by writing bigger checks. “Buying” opinions wasn’t an option in those days. Guys stayed with the same product for years, because they truly believed in the product, not just because they were getting paid. The irony is the standards were set by those that truly knew industry and it felt almost like they were obligated to tell the rest of us if the product was worthy or not. Did it meet their standards? If it did, why? It was a great time for the industry, because it was an honest shake on the products being produced.
Not so much now. Hunting industry “stars” come and go now pretty regularly, this happens about every 2 years. I have often joked that I could get just about anyone in the industry to sponsor my new “AIJ” (Air In a Jar) product line if the check I wrote them was big enough.
“This segment brought to you in part by:”
Hunting TV and Cable Shows The last couple of decades I have spent my fair share of “marketing” money on hunting shows. In the beginning we started off locally with a very small but talented group of videographers. They were like us, small but motivated and very eager to show their wares so to speak. What they produced was entertaining and well produced. It had a small town “real to life” charm and was humorous without trying to be funny. At the time we couldn’t afford to go “big time” and get our own, show so we stayed with producing hunting videos.
The videos didn’t do bad and we did finally get to the point where we were able to start sponsoring shows, but it seemed like the times were changing. I can’t really say if the marketing money helped us get there or was it just our shear will to survive, but we did manage to keep our head above water in an ocean full of sharks.
At the height of our “TV marketing” efforts we had our own show plus major sponsorships on 2 others at the same time. We were spending A LOT of money to “advertise” but what struck me most was the more we spent on TV shows the more we were being approached by others wanting us to sponsor their shows. It seemed as though the only real bump we got of all the marketing was offers to spend more money on marketing.
The Hunting show industry was full of people trying to make a name for themselves by, well, making a name for themselves. It’s an ocean full of sharks trying to get famous for being on a hunting show… This is what everyone with a product to sell in the industry thought you had to do to make it, you had to sponsor a hunting show. It’s simply not true. Not then and certainly not now. The outdoor/hunting channels used to have limits on how much “Advertising” you could do during the show. The reason, which I agreed with, was because they were trying to make sure the shows actually had content, versus ending up just being an 30 minute infomercial. Since that time, it seems that the channels no longer have any limits to advertising during the shows. It is not surprising to have 27 minutes of advertising (soft and hard) during a 30 minute show. It seems that content has taken the back seat to advertising, which probably explains the extreme decline in the amount of hunting related shows and channels now available. The channels that used to have a 1 year waiting list now are running old westerns to fill the spots. It’s sad to see the decline, as it used to be very entertaining.
Retail’s Race to the Bottom
At the same time the big online retailers “box shops” were just starting to gain momentum. There were still small “Mom and Pop” shops around, but their extinction was all but a certainty at that point. For a new manufacturer in the world of up and coming box shops the goal, as I understood it, was if you wanted to make it in the hunting industry you had to get in with the box shops. So off we went to get in with the box shops. After years of trying we finally made it! We finally made it in to a couple of the bigger box shops. Product was now officially in the “made it” column right?
Not so fast there… Let’s back up a bit.
See to get in the big box shops you have to pay a fairly large percentage. That understandable right? Sure it is, you set up your terms, agree to percentages, agree to give them a little bit extra percentage if they pay at 30 days versus their standard 60 day term (side note here, they will take the early pay percentage and still pay you late…welcome to world of “made it”)
Then you agree to give them a little bit extra to be in their catalog, even more to be on their shelves and even more to be in the prime locations on their shelves (you will also be required to buy out all the current inventory on the shelf).
Ok so once you get past all that – you’re in…. You’re in the catalog and your product has finally made it right? Well you get paid very late, give away huge percentages and the next thing you are hit with is one of two choices….
One is they contact you saying the competition is coming out with a similar product and they are giving better percentages and/or they are cheaper so you need to give up more to stay in the game.
The other is they decide that they are just going to make a similar product and brand label their name on it and no longer need you, thanks for playing.
All the time you are lead to believe that this is your only way to make it in the industry. Increase your percentages to them and reduce your price only for the end game to get bumped out by the big box shop. So basically you could be signing up for the end of your product line by going with a box shop.
There is always an absolute base cost model for any product. There are ways to cut costs but you do get to a point on any product where the base is and no matter how much you’d like to make them cheaper it’s just not possible.
So early on I realized that this was a race that I did not want to be any part of – The Race to the Bottom as a I call it. Basically, it’s ‘who can go out of business first trying to do business in the box shop industry’ is not really a business model I want to be a participant.
Maybe you have noticed this pattern, maybe not, but the next time you get a catalog or are on their online shop, look to see how many actual brand name products are there. Then notice how many brand name products have been replaced by their own label over the years.
Magazines, Editors picks and Top 10 Best Maybe it doesn’t come to you as a surprise but it certainly did to us. Along the same time as we were cutting our teeth on box shops and hunting shows, we started getting inundated with requests from writers and magazine editors who wanted to write about our products.
Really?? Just out of the blue they wanted to write about us? Awesome, we have made it big time now for sure……full stop.
What I was about to discover was this part of the industry had many unspoken rules…. Want an article written? Just give the writer loads of product then send them what you want written. Don’t expect to ever get that equipment back by the way….
Want to make Editor’s pick or the Top 10 List? Buy a big ad in the magazine. You are not going to make that or any list without paying for it.
Want to be featured in their magazine? You better be buying a huge amount of ads to substantiate the “amount of coverage you will receive”….
It really all came as a surprise to me that the inner workings of that industry had some really deeply concerning “practices” that shed an entirely new light on all those editor picks and top 10s I had read over the years. I didn’t expect any favors or special treatment but I certainly didn’t expect it to be a pay to play either for what was suppose to be an unbiased ranking … unfortunately it was.
Don’t get me wrong, there used to be a time when writers in the hunting industry were extremely well versed, knowledgeable and respected. These are not the guys I’m referring to. By the time we got into the industry the great writers were enjoying their retirement with grand kids and had gotten out of the industry.
‘Tip of the Hat’ to many of these greats I consider great friends and still legends of their time.
Probably nothing that hasn’t been covered hundreds of times over with people in the industry, but I have found more than once people seemed to be amazed at just how it all works (and in some cases, doesn’t work at)…….
So, if you are just up and coming into the industry, be cautiously suspicious of the industry.
Know that you can make it without having to fall prey to the industry pitfalls.
Just a quick little note covering gain and exposure:
To help shed some light, so to speak ironically, on night pictures I will try and explain what some of the biggest factors in getting good quality night photos. As with most things a lot of it is open to interpretation and what you personally feel is a good picture.
For us, we try and achieve the maximum brightness while maintaining the lowest gain and exposure settings while attaining the furthest range/distance.
Distance is important because most cameras out there use a wide angle lens – which makes targets appear much further away then they actually are – giving the perception that the flash range is also much further then it actually is. So always know the distance. And since I have already covered the differences between red glow and no glow we will just compare only no glow in the article.
What is gain and exposure?
Gain is pretty simply explained by artificially increasing the brightness – there is more to it in reality but for the general term that is what you are doing by increasing gain.
To some, this is acceptable.
Normal picture from our system:
Now if we increase the gain a little you get something like this: Does the picture look brighter?
We have this conversation quite a bit about what looks “good” and what doesn’t. For us, quite simply, the less gain means a better picture. You get more contrast with less gain and better detail. Some will still argue that more gain means a brighter picture but in all actuality it isn’t. The target (in this case the deer) has more clarity and brightness in the normal picture with little gain. Because as you add gain you also add noise which will add to the pixelation to picture which then loses detail. It also adds that ghost look to your picture.
The other side of brightness to a night picture is the amount of exposure being used. The longer exposure you use the brighter the picture will be. The downside is that any target that is moving with long exposure times will end up very blurry. So with most cameras they are forced to use a very long exposure and lots of gain to appear to have bright pictures. Our systems use a very short exposure and very minimum amount of gain trying to achieve a nice balance of brightness and contrast so we can maintain the highest level of detail possible.
From the very beginning we have always maintained our wireless network to be modular in design. We have always tried to build our wireless platform for our design to be robust enough to have the capability to expand. So it probably comes as no surprise that our system can be operated in a variety of different ways.
The key to remember with our system is all the X series field devices (cameras, echos, feeders, activators, etc.) are all interchangeable between the different base receivers. So you can switch bases at anytime without having to do anything to your field units. I’m not going to go into every detail on every feature of the entire system, but my typical answer is whatever you want it to do – it probably can…. All the base receivers can handle up to 254 field devices and all utilize the same software. So to make thing easeir, I will just stick to the differences in the base receivers.
Our most common base receiver is what we refer to as the PC Base. This would be the base you would use when you have a computer within range of your field units (cameras, etc.)
The PC Base is connected to your computer’s USB port and comes standard with a dipole antenna. So your cameras (and echos, feeders, etc.) communicate directly to your computer via the PC Base. A typical upgrade to the PC Base is to upgrade the standard antenna to a high gain antenna. This will get the antenna outside and up higher so as to significantly increase the transmission range.
The next type of base receiver we offer is the CellBase. The CellBase is unique because it can be deployed in the same area as the field devices with no need for a computer to be within range. The CellBase can operate off standard wall power or battery power with solar panel and can be setup on most major carriers and cell providers worldwide. We have CellBase systems operating in Africa and being controlled by their owners in the USA, so the CellBase is quite versatile. Our first CellBase was deployed over 12 years and even back then we knew that we had to have a system that could utilize ANY cellular provider because some carriers just perform better in some areas. So we have always been able to operate on just about any carrier across the globe. The one key feature that most don’t realize is the ability to upgrade the CellBase as carriers switch “G’s”. The more recent trend for carriers has been to race to the highest G possible. So if you are using the standard “cellular camera” that was operating on 2G and the service went to 3G you were stuck with a cellular camera that would no longer work. With our CellBase design as carriers switch from 2G to 3G to 4G the CellBase can be upgraded as well. Our current CellBase can actually switch from 3G service to 4G service automatically on the fly as services become available without interruption. This may not sound like a big deal until your CellBase and 40 camera system is 600 miles away then it becomes a big deal.
The next base we offer is what we call the NetBase. The NetBase requires an Ethernet connection at location and the ability to locate the DCHP IP address on the network (typically private). From that point you can control all the field devices from the netbase over the network using the X manager software. This base is typically more for commercial applications utilizing communication towers in the field but we do have some consumer customers using the NetBase as well.
So in a nut shell we have the PC Base for those that have a computer within range of the field devices. The CellBase for remote applications and the NetBase for those DCHP savy users..
I almost forgot that you can use a camera as a base and have all your devices report to a single camera so you only visit that camera to retrieve the SD card that will store all the other field devices images and videos. This is a great feature if you want to have a temporary setup (say like a hunting trip) but in most long term setups users quickly find what a difference a base makes and migrate to one of the 3 base options listed above.
Be sure to check out our BEC Tactical site and Facebook page specifically covering our tactical side products. BEC Tactical is just a way for us to cover specific topics and applications so to better assist our tactical customers.
Our product line has become so versatile over the years that we really needed to segregate our lines simply because the needs and questions we receive from our wildlife community tends to be completely different than the questions we receive from the tactical customers. Although a larger percentage of the information is covered very similarly between the groups, the presentation of the information usually needs to be different.
BEC Tactical site covers an in depth look at how to apply the systems in different situations and setups including how to integrate the BEC system with existing sensors and systems. The site also covers the GSA and SBA for our government customers insuring they receive the best price possible without having to go to bid our get additional quotes from other sources.
Be sure to contact us if you have any questions at all!
We get this question quite a bit. Why do we use SLA (Sealed Lead Acid) and not Lithiums or Alkalines?
There are many advantages to the SLA type batteries the biggest by far is there tolerance to many different types of charging methods. Being able to accept a charge from different charging methods is what separates sealed lead acid batteries from just about any other battery. This is also important if you want to use solar chargers to help keep your battery charged up. If you look at the nature of lithium batteries for example they require a very specific charging method and have no tolerance for any other methods. The lithium batteries are typically controlled (regulated) as to their “on” and “off” as well as their “charging”.
Seen the reports of lithium type batteries catching on fire, exploding or just melting down? This is usually due to a failure in either the charge control or the regulated control allowing the battery to get too hot, over charging or discharging or all of the above. Lithium batteries have a very tight tolerance for these functions and if they go outside of those tolerance bad things can and will happen. End results can be from benign to catastrophic. At at the end of the day you really do not gain anything over the SLA battery in power, weight or physical size not to mention that the lithium batteries are more expensive.
Alkaline batteries are really not a viable option when you consider the heat/cold and power requirements, plus the fact that they are one and done in most cases. Our IR “flash” alone would be enough to sink most alkalines in very short order.
We use the SLA battery because they operate in a reliable, simple to use power spectrum and if properly maintained should easily last 3-5 years in the field. The one downside to SLA batteries is they need to be properly maintained. The quickest way to ruin a SLA battery is to leave it in a discharged state for a long period of time. Even new batteries have to be properly maintained in order to keep from losing capacity. This is one reason why it’s important to buy the batteries from someone who sells a lot of batteries (like us!) because shelf life “maintenance” is extremely important. You can buy a brand new battery from someone who has had the battery on their shelf for over a year and not properly maintained it making it completely worthless (even though it is brand new). So be careful buying cheap SLA batteries – you get what you pay for….
And once a SLA battery has lost capacity it will never be the same.
Think of the battery like a fuel tank. It starts off brand new fully charge and can hold “10 gallons”. Then you leave it in the field discharged for a couple of weeks, it will no longer hold “10 gallons” – it will charge up and appear to function normally except now it only holds “8 gallons”. So you can see if you repeat this process several times (leaving it in the field discharged for a couple of weeks) it will eventually lose all it’s capacity – it will act like it is charging but only last a couple of days in the field. This is because it now will only hold “1/2 a gallon”. At the point where a SLA battery loses it capacity it will need to be replaced as it will never regain it’s capacity.
If you keep the batteries charged and don’t leave them in a discharged state for very long you can expect years of solid performance from a single SLA battery. This is one of the main reasons a good solar panel is worth the money simply because they can keep your battery maintained properly for years.
I guess I’m old enough to remember a time when the political arena was no place for a business. I am also old enough to have seen a lot of businesses go out of business trying to push a political agenda rather than just running their business.
Who are these people?
Our industry is competitive enough without trying to hamstring our entire corporation with our “personal” political views. Who are these people that are willing to risk their entire company and all their employees fate over a personal political position? I get it that some are just doing it for the old adage of “any marketing is good marketing” but there is always a tipping point.
Why would you want to rally so many potential customers against your business based on a singular political view? Is your business doing so well that you can afford to alienate an entire customer base? I just don’t see it. I really just don’t see it.
My political view My personal political view has no business being, well, in our business. Our business is in the business to win customers over by our high quality product and keep them coming back because of our excellent support and customer service. It’s tough to make it in this industry as it is, let alone trying to be some social justice warrior worried too much about politics and not enough about their products/services. Besides the fact that this seems to be an American issue that a lot of our customers overseas 1) Don’t understand and 2) Could really care less about our “first world American” problems..
So don’t be “that guy”….
My hope My hope is that everyone buys our products. We stand behind our products and hope that all sides of the political world just sees us for what we stand for – A company that makes one heck of a wireless system. I know we have played a vital role on most sides of the political world and that’s exactly the way it should be. We want your business, first and foremost because that’s how we stay in business and that how our employees keep their jobs, pay their mortgages and raise their families. That is what is important to me and our company.
All the while big corporations are out there pitting everyone against one another is some fashion to make a political statement and I just want our company to be successful. Our wireless systems are used by hunters, by researchers, by the left, the right and the center. Our goal is to make your goal easier.
You want to save the snow leopard? Glad to help!
You want to catch poachers in the jungle? Glad to help!
You want to monitor the glacier flow? Glad to help!
You want to catch your neighbor harassing your cats? Glad to help! (true story)
You want to get a picture of that monster buck? Glad to help!
You get the idea…. It’s a big world out there…..