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Charlie HeinAdministrator
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Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review
      #5644301 - 01/26/13 12:18 PM

Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review

By John Hayes


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shams42
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Reged: 01/05/09

Loc: Kingsport, TN
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5644373 - 01/26/13 01:06 PM

Unbelievable! Thanks for posting that cautionary tale.

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dlpville
member


Reged: 07/09/07

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: shams42]
      #5645133 - 01/26/13 09:07 PM

Claiming patent protection on a product is a violation of US Code, specifically; 35 U.S.C. 292.

"Whoever marks upon, or affixes to, or uses in advertising in connection with any article the words “patent applied for,” “patent pending,” or any word importing that an application for patent has been made, when no application for patent has been made, or if made, is not pending, for the purpose of deceiving the public
—Shall be fined not more than $500 for every such offense. Only the United States may sue for the penalty authorized by this subsection."

Might want to inform Mr. Clinard of his impropriety; or the Patent and Trademarks Office.


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Laz
member


Reged: 10/18/12

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5645357 - 01/27/13 01:18 AM

notify sky and telescope mag, he places ads----they may help

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rfr66
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Reged: 12/07/11

Loc: Long Island, NY
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Laz]
      #5645714 - 01/27/13 10:01 AM

You can file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and Consumer Affairs. They can help to get your money refunded. If you had paid by credit card (always a good idea)you could have disputed the charges.

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Mike E.
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Reged: 01/26/10

Loc: Moonstone Observatory
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: rfr66]
      #5646022 - 01/27/13 01:00 PM

I must say I was impressed by the website when I first saw it a couple years ago, gave me a sense of old world quality with a no nonsense approach.
Thank you for posting, and I hope you find eventual satisfaction; I've scratched them off my list for future consideration.


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andysea
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Loc: Seattle, WA
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: rfr66]
      #5646034 - 01/27/13 01:08 PM

Whoa! I can't believe the poor quality of the machining. That is beyond bad. I am speechless. Thanks for posting the detailed review! I Hope this gets around.

Andy


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Sean Cunneen
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Reged: 08/01/07

Loc: Blue Island Illinois
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: andysea]
      #5646210 - 01/27/13 02:55 PM

Mr. Hayes's experience is just terrible. The condition of the worm drive teeth are unbelievable and I hope he gets some remedy. None of those parts appear to be functional much less properly finished!

I get a kick out of the scribe lines, perhaps this would be my cue to get into the "Handmade" Mount business!

Sean


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rockethead26
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Reged: 10/21/09

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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: andysea]
      #5646224 - 01/27/13 03:01 PM

Holy Cow! That's about as bad as it can get. Sorry you're having to eat $1000. Agree with rfr66, file complaints with the BBB and Consumer affairs.

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chuck52
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: rockethead26]
      #5646340 - 01/27/13 04:16 PM

Mr Hayes,
I hope you pursue this and try to get your money back.I too had considered a purchase from this website but thats off the table now.Thank you for sharing your experience with us.I can only say the other satisfied customers must have extremely low standards of acceptability if this is typical of the product sold.


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Deep13
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: chuck52]
      #5646475 - 01/27/13 05:19 PM

Wow, thanks for the warning.

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StarStuff1
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Reged: 04/01/07

Loc: South of the Mason-Dixon Line
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Deep13]
      #5646552 - 01/27/13 05:57 PM

Very enlightening and close to being depressing that a company would show such behaviour.

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cspell
journeyman


Reged: 05/14/11

Loc: NJ
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: StarStuff1]
      #5646746 - 01/27/13 07:21 PM

I am awaiting delivery of a system I recently ordered from OC. Took a very deep breath after reading John's review.

Up to now, (with one exception) all the reports and experiences on CL and elsewhere I found were very positive.

I don't know what else to say except John, I'm really sorry about your experience and thanks for the very detailed report.


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Glen A W
sage


Reged: 07/04/08

Loc: WEST VIRGINIA USA
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: cspell]
      #5647041 - 01/27/13 10:05 PM

It looks like the spur gear was damaged, and it sounds like he offered to replace it. The rest of this seems petty to me since it looks like it would work okay. GW

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Joe F Gafford
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/15/06

Loc: Denver, Colorado, US
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: cspell]
      #5647049 - 01/27/13 10:09 PM Attachment (163 downloads)

Yes! I had problems with this guy. First, when you send him an e-mail, he only reads the first sentence. I sent one out saying that the motor gear would not mesh with the reduction gear and the second sentence I said that they were of a different pitch. I had to send a second email with an image of the problem after he said to adjust the motor down so they mesh. Here's the image:

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Joe F Gafford
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/15/06

Loc: Denver, Colorado, US
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Joe F Gafford]
      #5647155 - 01/27/13 11:10 PM Attachment (124 downloads)

After sending back the motor and reduction gear, I found out that the motor was bad. I sent the motor back and he claimed that the manufacturer said that the motor was abused by some unknown error they did not recognize and I would have to pay for a new one. Um, I have experience with syncronous motors being an electronics technician and I suspected that the wire color coding was wrong. I reluctantly paid for the new motor and got the thing to work on my old Meade DS-10 mount.

I then put the scope on the mount and gave a test ride in the backyard with an illuminated reticle. The drive's sinusoidal tracking error on the OC 6.6" drive was almost as bad as the 3" original Meade gear! I then sent him some emails describing the problem and got essentially the same response that John got. This error was too much for the autoguider on my camera.
I then took the worm and worm gear to a local machinist and he said that it was "fair" and he could not do anything unless I would have to pay some serious wampum to replace it. I was peeved to say the least!

I took it home and as I was sitting in my plush chair, I removed the 6.6" worm gear out of the box and put it edgewise on my lap. Then I got the worm assembly and placed it on the gear and got the teeth to mesh. I was thinking where to go from there when I noticed that the worm resting on the gear did not align to the large gear's plane. It was nearly 2 degrees off! I then flipped the gear, the same! I flipped the worm housing, the same! I tried to get to mesh in the plane and to 1 degree to the opposite side, it would flop back! I then mounted the whole thing back onto the mount and added a shim to canter the worm about 1 degree from the 6.6" worm gear plane. I took it outside that night and had a reduction of the sine error peaks of less than 20%! I then put the ccd camera on and it guided!

The old Meade drive electronics had been gutted long ago and replaced by my own circuit design with an autoguider option. I still use the original joystick with trimtabs. Still works to this day. I did the two solar events and imaged at a star party with this scope this past year.

Joe


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johnnyha
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5647316 - 01/28/13 01:35 AM

Quote:

It looks like the spur gear was damaged, and it sounds like he offered to replace it. The rest of this seems petty to me since it looks like it would work okay. GW



I guess that's easy to say if you haven't paid $984 for... this thing. I find this completely indefensible. I think the author is 100% justified in writing this and letting the community know what we are dealing with here. There are multiple issues, the gear is just one of many. This looks worse than something built in middleschool shop class at a School for the Blind. Shoddy. And quite possibly the worst customer service I have ever heard of, very disappointing to hear.


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Thanatos78621
member


Reged: 05/09/12

Loc: Elgin, TX
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: johnnyha]
      #5647340 - 01/28/13 02:02 AM

That someone would market themselves as a precision machinist while produce that level of product is insane. I've seen better work from first year engineering students.

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Joe F Gafford
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/15/06

Loc: Denver, Colorado, US
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Thanatos78621]
      #5647371 - 01/28/13 02:57 AM

To add:
1) When I got mine about 6-7 years ago, he had a Ford Motor Company email address.
2) What edge break? I had to do that myself!
3) The worm (spur) gear is made from aluminum and it looked good when I got it.
4) There were burrs in the shaft hole as well.
5) The worm itself wasn't what I expected and the shaft that is mounted to has a rough surface as pictured and was slightly bent. The shaft is springy anyway. Mr Clinard responded to my questions of these observations as a non-problem.
6) My motor is of a different type of AC motor than what Dr. Hayes got. I had to supply the AC cord and the buss bar for the cords and the capacitor. My motor is reversable according to the motor wire in which the capacitor is hooked to, a switch could do that for northern/southern hemisphere adjustment. That was a no problem for me anyway. I made a separate insulating housing to cover the motor with. I used a 3 pronged AC cable for safety.
7) I got the same grip marks on the worm shaft standoffs.
8) I am early forced retired and have a limited income from my savings. I could not afford a Paramount type mount. I could not fight this "machinist" due to my income.

Joe


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Howie Glatter
Vendor


Reged: 07/04/06

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review *DELETED* new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5647471 - 01/28/13 06:37 AM

Post deleted by droid

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CJK
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/05/12

Loc: Northeast TN
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Howie Glatter]
      #5647484 - 01/28/13 06:54 AM

Wow. I'm speechless. The level of workmanship is absolutely appalling, and the lack of integrity even more so.

I think it's a real service to the community that Dr. Hayes took the time to carefully document this and post it.

-- Chris


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Ed D
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Loc: Sunny South Florida
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: CJK]
      #5647544 - 01/28/13 08:06 AM

I'm also speechless. There are plenty of ATM guys and gals here that do much better work with basic hand tools. I hope the author gets his money back, but I have a bad feeling he's been had.

Ed D


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PhilH
sage


Reged: 01/27/05

Loc: Long Island, NY
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Ed D]
      #5647608 - 01/28/13 08:59 AM

If I might, let me pull an excerpt from my book Star Ware, which addresses problems with vendors. It might prove helpful here, or perhaps in a future situation.
==================================================
The vast majority of astronomical companies are owned and operated by a staff of competent, friendly people. They want happy customers (remember, a happy customer is a repeat customer) and guard their good reputations jealously. Most are willing to bend over backwards to see that a problem is resolved to the customer's satisfaction. But what can the consumer do if he or she is dissatisfied with a manufacturer or distributor?

Begin on the right foot. Before returning a defective piece of merchandise, always speak to the manufacturer first about the problem. Request instructions for the most expeditious way to return the item for replacement or refund. Conform to the directions precisely, but to protect yourself, always follow up the conversation with a letter. In it, repeat the nature of the problem as well as the desired outcome. Send the letter by certified mail, return receipt requested, and keep a copy for your records.

Allow the company a reasonable length of time to respond to your complaint, typically two to four weeks. If, after that time, a satisfactory resolution has not been reached, write to the company again and inquire as to the delay. State that you expect a response within a given period of time, say ten business days. Once again, send the letter by certified mail, return receipt requested, and keep a copy for your records. If there is still no response, call the company and find out the owner's name. Write to him or her directly, recounting all that has happened since the item was ordered.

By now, the predicament should have been resolved, but if it has not, then it's time to take action. The major astronomical periodicals do not have on-staff consumer advocates, yet they do take an active interest in consumer satisfaction with all who advertise in their magazines. Write to them with your complaint, being certain to send a copy to the president/owner of the offending company. In addition, send a copy of the letter to the Astronomical League. The League is also interested in customer satisfaction, and may offer assistance. If you suspect mail fraud, also contact your local postal inspector or complete Form 8165, Mail Fraud Complaint Questionnaire, which is available at all United States post offices. Return the completed form to the postmaster or mail it to the following address: Chief Postal Inspector; U.S. Postal Service; 475 L’Enfant Plaza SW, Room 3021; Washington, DC, 20260-2100. You should also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580.

Most consumer advocates recommend charging all mail orders to a major credit card; do not use a check or money order, if possible. Using a credit card gives you certain powers that are not available any other way. On the back of every credit card's monthly statement, there are instructions that clearly describe steps to be taken in the event of a consumer problem. Usually, the card requires that the consumer describe in specific detail the exact nature of the problem and provide copies of all receipts and documentation. The charge will then be put in contest until the problem is resolved. If a charge is contested, the consumer is not responsible for any interest that may accrue as a result. When a final determination is made, either a credit will be issued to the charge account or the balance plus interest will be due.

Contesting a charge should be viewed as a last resort measure. Only put a charge in contest when a bona fide problem exists and the vendor refuses to cooperate. For instance, just because you decided that you don't like an item anymore is not reason enough to contest a charge, but poor quality or workmanship is. See the difference?


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Jeff Morgan
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Reged: 09/28/03

Loc: Prescott, AZ
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5648039 - 01/28/13 12:34 PM

Wretched. Absolutely wretched.

I get that many astro-businesses are small outgrowths from another business that provides the owner a liveable income. And I admire the entrepreneurs that market to our small hobby, in most cases it can only be a labor of love.

But this example would indicate Optic-Craft is not in the machining business with both feet, let alone the astronomy business.


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Glen A W
sage


Reged: 07/04/08

Loc: WEST VIRGINIA USA
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Jeff Morgan]
      #5648058 - 01/28/13 12:40 PM

I have no connection to the proprietor here. I just suspect that there is more to this, one way or another. I do not agree that this case is well-documented. We have one side of it and can make of it what we will. Clearly, the spur gear is damaged, but an offer to take care of that was made. Numerous inferences are made in the article as to the proprietor's state of mind and these are inappropriate and damaging to the writer's case.

If we knew the whole story here, there would be some other variable. Perhaps the proprietor is ill, or perhaps there was merely personality clash. There is always a chance that someone was out to rip someone off, but I am finding that very hard to believe. I, for one, simply would not care about whether a piece of flat metal was cut with a mill or by hand, so long as it functions. Others may certainly differ.

But before we condemn someone who has not had his say and who has served the astronomical community for many years, perhaps we ought to investigate a little more. I note that most "satisfied customers" listed on his web site were high-profile institutions, and that may give you a tip right there that he may not be operating with the mindset of cosmetically-concerned amateurs. Glen

Edited by Glen A W (01/28/13 12:43 PM)


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t.r.
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5648106 - 01/28/13 12:57 PM

Well, that review about sums it up. Now OC has some damage control to perform and some PR to attend to...at least to ever have my interest as a potential customer, which I have been. " You've got some splaining to do Lucy"!!!

Even if Mr. Clinard is perhaps winding down operations, or busy with other things, a vendor must, must, must take care of their customers, this hobby is too small not to (word gets around). If he is ending the business, at least he should care about his legacy and reputation and not go out like this, with this stain if true.


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rockethead26
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Loc: Arizona, USA
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5648504 - 01/28/13 03:32 PM

Quote:

I have no connection to the proprietor here. I just suspect that there is more to this, one way or another. I do not agree that this case is well-documented. We have one side of it and can make of it what we will. Clearly, the spur gear is damaged, but an offer to take care of that was made. Glen




Glen,

I saw a lot more issues documented in the accompanying photographs that a "damaged spur gear". Let's just say the case is well documented from the customer's standpoint.


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andysea
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Loc: Seattle, WA
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5648593 - 01/28/13 04:11 PM

This is interesting.
In my line of work, whenever there is fabrication involved we request the fabricator to produce what is called shop drawings. That is to make sure that the design intent described in the construction documents is well understood. This gives everyone the opportunity to agree on the actual drawings that the fabricator will build from. Typically the shop drawings are reviewed by the designer and approved- or corrected/rejected - in writing. This is done in such a way that everyone involved in the fabrication process has one original copy of the approved shop drawings. If the fabricator fails to produce shop drawings then it's their responsibility to match the original design and if something is not correctly executed then the fabricator will have to correct the issue.
In essence not producing shop drawings becomes a liability to the fabricator.

In this case the first thing to do would be check the part for conformance with the original construction documents.
It looks like specific tolerances were given for all the specific dimensions. Even just not meeting the requested tolerances would be sufficient reason to reject the part. Furthermore it appears that the original design has been altered during fabrication.

This is a good reminder for all of us to be cautious and make sure that the expectations are understood from the outset.
I am also wondering if there are specific metal fabrication standards that should be referenced when ordering custom parts.
Unfortunately not having any machining experience I don't know but I would think that there should be specific standards for the various grades of machining, tolerances etc...

Just my 2c

Andy


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nebultick
member
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Reged: 10/09/12

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Howie Glatter]
      #5649098 - 01/28/13 07:55 PM

those bearings on the shaft are just a rod end ball joints the cheap ones cost like $6.28 for 1/2" id. I've used the for car suspension parts. I'd expect something a little better for a precision telescope drive system. Maybe some CNC housings with high tolerance cartridge bearings.

All the stuff the screwed up too seems like the easiest things to get right. I mean I could have built that whole thing in my garage minus - the round piece the gear is attached too, and the black anodizing.


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jhayes_tucson
sage
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Reged: 08/26/12

Loc: Bend, OR
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: nebultick]
      #5649451 - 01/28/13 11:09 PM

Thanks for all of the ideas, comments, and suggestions. Let me simply add that there isn't much of a back story to tell about this incident and frankly, I'd be delighted if Mr. Clinard would respond to this review. Everything in it is true and the photos speak for themselves. Mr. Clinard may have delivered some good products in his day but IMHO, this sure isn't one of them. Smart manufacturers understand that customers can now more easily share their experiences, which makes a "take the money and run" way of doing business a more risky proposition. In the meantime, I've replaced the OCM drive with a new drive from Ed Byers and it is a work of art by comparison. Once I get some meaningful data I'll post a review of that drive. I'll be delighted if it works even half as good as it looks!
John


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herrointment
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Reged: 03/12/11

Loc: North of Hwy. 64
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: jhayes_tucson]
      #5649566 - 01/29/13 12:30 AM

The blacksmith in the town I grew up in could build anything....but in 1964 his days were numbered.

Could be the same case here except our blacksmith didn't have a web site (or phone, or toilet or broom!).


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sniperpride
super member


Reged: 01/04/12

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5649769 - 01/29/13 07:03 AM

Quote:

I note that most "satisfied customers" listed on his web site were high-profile institutions, and that may give you a tip right there that he may not be operating with the mindset of cosmetically-concerned amateurs. Glen



So for example, if someone produces parts for NASA. Wouldnt you expect them to have a reasonable quality control? I mean, NASA doesn't just hire anyone. If he produces things for high profile institutions and then gives an amateur something that looks like it was made in a high school,(no offense to young machinists) This is unacceptable.


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cheapersleeper
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 01/22/10

Loc: Sachse TX
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: sniperpride]
      #5649883 - 01/29/13 09:04 AM

I know little about design or fabrication but I can say one thing after looking at those pics: That does not look like a thousand dollar piece of equipment.

B


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bykhed
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 10/22/07

Loc: Westminster, CO
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: cheapersleeper]
      #5650264 - 01/29/13 12:55 PM

Wow. Appalling. I have some some minor machining in my garage with a drill press and bench sander and much of my work looks better than this....thing. I have seen precision machining and this is far, far from anything a true professional would sell.

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cspell
journeyman


Reged: 05/14/11

Loc: NJ
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: bykhed]
      #5650652 - 01/29/13 04:09 PM

Now, what does a thousand dollar piece of equipment look like? Check out the stuff at real observatories- Lick if you are ever in the neighborhood and the reflector used on public viewing nights that the grad students assembled....

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johnnyha
Postmaster
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Reged: 11/12/06

Loc: Sherman Oaks, CA
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: cspell]
      #5650700 - 01/29/13 04:31 PM

For a couple hundred dollars more you can have this from a real machine shop.

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RogerRZ
Whatta you lookin' at?
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Reged: 01/09/06

Loc: West Collette, NB, Canada
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: johnnyha]
      #5650797 - 01/29/13 05:33 PM

Or anything from ADM, Moonlite, or Starlight Industries...

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City Kid
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 05/06/09

Loc: Northern Indiana
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5651200 - 01/29/13 09:27 PM

I am a machinist in a machine shop that manufactures fire fighting equipment. We throw away stuff that looks better than what the author was shipped. That is some of the worst machining I've seen. I've also had the opportunity to grade machining projects that students at Ivy Tech have made and I've never seen any work from any of the students that was that bad.

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Mister T.
super member


Reged: 09/15/09

Loc: Sun Prairie, Wisconsin
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: RogerRZ]
      #5651212 - 01/29/13 09:32 PM

I have Opticraft drives here on a homebrewed (Novak) GEM. Age is unknown; I'd guess 1960s or 1970s vintage.

While some of it is a bit unorthodox, like the use of rod end bearings for the support of worm gear shafts, and some of the aluminum plate parts are a bit crudely done (ie, bandsawed), the finished product is CERTAINLY a lot better than that THING I saw here! I wouldn't call it high precision, but it's certainly BETTER.

It looks like Opticraft's standards have slipped some if he's shipping bricks like THIS.

Here's what I've got.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/42100982@N06/6218721928/in/set-72157627710339187

Edited by Mister T. (01/29/13 09:37 PM)


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johnlynch
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review *DELETED* new [Re: Howie Glatter]
      #5652825 - 01/30/13 05:28 PM

Post deleted by iceblaze

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polaraligned
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: johnlynch]
      #5652877 - 01/30/13 05:57 PM

There are plenty of opticians out there making mirrors of this quality level....Too bad you got screwed on this drive.

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orion61

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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review *DELETED* new [Re: polaraligned]
      #5652930 - 01/30/13 06:19 PM

Post deleted by droid

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Joe F Gafford
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: orion61]
      #5653517 - 01/31/13 01:47 AM

I thought that my problem with Mr. Clinard was a fluke all of these years. At the time I bought the mount upgrade from him, Byers went out of business. He was the only machinist left that would make the right sized gear for my particular mount. I was thinking on a Parks drive or mount, but I could not find any reviews of any kind for that mount. I did find a few for Optic Craft though.

That initial problem with the gear on the motor should of tipped me off. I worked on consumer electronics repair and for a known telescope machine shop afterwards doing gofer work and making their encoder assemblies for the after market mounts. In both places the QC was paramount. In the telescope shop, we tested the devices assembled before we shipped it out. Clear instructions were sent along with a CD with the other products in the line we made. We made the special mounting brackets himself and powder coat them along with the other items we made.

I was able to fix the problems with that drive assembly, but other people do no have that kind of skill. That is the major problem.

Joe


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dawsonian2000
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5653558 - 01/31/13 02:48 AM

I read John Hayes' review of one of Optic Craft Machining's clock drive and was utterly floored! I am so happy that I was able to purchase an Ed Byers' drive. Additionally, my Byer's drive of 9" inches cost much less!!!

Unfortunately, I had to remove OC from my list of vendors on the VSC website.


Mel


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polaraligned
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: dawsonian2000]
      #5653717 - 01/31/13 07:18 AM

I hope somebody has forwarded him the link to this thread...

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opticcraft1
Vendor (Optic Craft Machining)


Reged: 05/20/11

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5654430 - 01/31/13 02:32 PM

It is not good that Mr. Hayes and I have come to this misunderstanding. I would like to make a few commnets.
1—He asked for basic design dimensions that I provided to him. The assumption on my part is that I assumed he would realize that on a 5.6” worm gear with 359 teeth,that the gear would have to be 64 pitch. During the construction of his order I was going through a bad case of the flu and should not have been working. I see that I missed a debur on the ID bore of the clutch and I did not straighten one of the tie rod ends properly. They can easily be repositioned. I offered to replace the damaged worm gear at no cost him to include shipping charges.
2—Comments were made about rough finish on the clutch plates. This is done deliberately as I found that creating a sanded surface finish works well against the clutch gasket to get the proper clutch tension. I have been making the drives this way for over 15 years.
3—It is apparent that many of the commentators wish to condemn my work. It should also be known that we have provided 100’s of clock drives and well over 340 equatorial mountings over the past 28 years. These systems are all over the world. There are 56 systems supplied to various Universities and Institutions. We have been contracted seven times by NASA agencies for mountings and clock drives. Just last summer we provided a 2.5” head with 12” drives to JPL in Pasadena, CA. for an infra-red project. I do not get negative reports from the field and consider this situation with Mr. Hayes to be an anomaly.
4- Do to limitations on photo postings, I will be sending additional comments and photos on this issue in tandem.
Terry Clinard Optic Craft Machining Co.

Edited by iceblaze (02/01/13 02:27 PM)


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opticcraft1
Vendor (Optic Craft Machining)


Reged: 05/20/11

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5654495 - 01/31/13 03:10 PM Attachment (96 downloads)

Further comments from Optic Craft Machining Co. These comments are primarily directed to Dr. Hayes only.
Dr. Hayes, thought you might be interested in a solar dish array we provided to Raytheon Corp., Tucson, AZ. in 2009-2010 time frames. I see that you are an Adjunct Professor with “The University of Arizona” and have an impressive listing of patents under your authorship. I present this to you to somehow show you that are field quality standards are recognized by others including the University of Arizona.
The participants were the following: Dr. Roger Angel (Director of the Steward Observatory Mirror Laboratory). Dr. Angel provided the parabolic glass optical panels for the 10 foot solar dish. Raytheon provided the dish frame and had operational authority over the project. I provided (2) 24” clock drives with GO-TO system provided by my British partner AWR Technologies. The primary solar converter was made by Dr. Ugur Ortabasi (inventor of the first 41% all light solar to electric converter).
The project was successful and my clock drives moved and tracked the sun as intended. The payload was in excess of 550#’s.
At present this program has now moved to the University Of California. The main changes to the dish will be utilizing my new patent for plastic reinforced parabolic panels with 98.8% reflectivity in place of the glass parabolic panels. This reduces the cost of the panels by a large factor. This is a very existing project for me, because development of a 41% efficient solar collector will outperform any existing 16% maximum flat solar panel.

Terry Clinard Optic Craft Machining Co.


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opticcraft1
Vendor (Optic Craft Machining)


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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5654515 - 01/31/13 03:19 PM Attachment (87 downloads)

Continue comments from Optic Craft Machining Co.

Dr. Hayes here is a close up of the right ascension 24.4” clock drive used on the solar dish.
Once again the system performed flawlessly.

Terry Clinard Optic Craft Machining Co.


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opticcraft1
Vendor (Optic Craft Machining)


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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5654538 - 01/31/13 03:26 PM Attachment (80 downloads)

Continued comments from Optic Craft Machining Co.

The attached photo is one my systems using two 9” clock drives coupled to a GO-TO AWR Technologies systems. The pillow block bearings in this case are enclosed and the shaft diameters are 2.5”.
My customer is extremely pleased and has sent me many astro CCD photos using this configuration.

Terry Clinard Optic Craft Machining Co.


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opticcraft1
Vendor (Optic Craft Machining)


Reged: 05/20/11

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5654555 - 01/31/13 03:36 PM Attachment (71 downloads)

Further comments from Optic Craft Machining Co.

The attached photo is a system I manufactured four months ago. It uses two of my 9” RA drives, 1.5” shafts, wedge and my fabricated pier. Once again no problems. System performs to all operating standards.

Terry Clinard Optic Craft Machining Co.


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opticcraft1
Vendor (Optic Craft Machining)


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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5654571 - 01/31/13 03:44 PM Attachment (73 downloads)

Further comments from Optic Craft Machining Co.

Attached is simple design 2” shaft diameter simple bushing design equatorial mounting using one 6.6” clock drive, wedge and fabricated oak tripod. Max size OTS 10” F/4.5 or 6” f/10 refractor.

All positive operating reports from my customers.

Terry Clinard Optic Craft Machining Co.


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opticcraft1
Vendor (Optic Craft Machining)


Reged: 05/20/11

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5654578 - 01/31/13 03:50 PM Attachment (82 downloads)

Last comments from Optic Craft Machining Co.

Attached is an example of one of the many 2.5” head assemblies we have constructed over the years. This particular assembly is installed at a local University here in Michigan. It uses 2.5” SS shafts, a 12” RA drive , a 9” DEC drive, wedge and AWR GO-TO system. The OTA is a Celestron C-14.

Runs perfectly.

Terry Clinard Optic Craft Machining Co.


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ahopp
sage


Reged: 05/24/12

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: opticcraft1]
      #5654587 - 01/31/13 03:57 PM

Terry,

You say that your issue with Dr. Hays was an anomaly. If so, and I have no reason to doubt you, then I would recommend that you bend over backwards to satisfy him.

I own my own business and would never let it get this far. As long as you believe that what he showed us was in fact what you delivered then you should pony up and get this resolved.

If, however, Dr. Hays did not show what you delivered, shame on him.

Tony


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Footbag
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: opticcraft1]
      #5654592 - 01/31/13 03:59 PM

Do you believe that Mr. Hayes worm, as received and photographed, is a good representation of your work?

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dawsonian2000
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: ahopp]
      #5654724 - 01/31/13 05:19 PM

Good recommendations, Tony. I guess I am as guity as others in judging OC before getting the story from Terry's side. I hold off on removing OC site from my site until we all can come to an honest consensus on the matter.

I will be awaiting "the rest of the story"...


Mel


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rdandrea
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: opticcraft1]
      #5654728 - 01/31/13 05:21 PM

You can probably make this right with the customer. You should.

Edited by iceblaze (02/01/13 02:27 PM)


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Jay_Bird
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: rdandrea]
      #5654772 - 01/31/13 05:50 PM

I'm glad to see that OC responded to the "OP" and hope that the two of them take the opportunity to come to terms to resolve this.

Even after all these posts, they are the ONLY TWO who are fully informed about the matter, and fully invested in the outcome.


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Gert K A
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: opticcraft1]
      #5654872 - 01/31/13 06:41 PM

Quote:

Terry Clinard Optic Craft Machining Co. :

During the construction of his order I was going through a bad case of the flu and should not have been working.




I agree


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ahopp
sage


Reged: 05/24/12

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Gert K A]
      #5655123 - 01/31/13 09:32 PM

Terry,

One more point, please do not work around machinery while sick. No one wants you to get injured to meet some self imposed, or otherwise, deadline. Be safe, be good and and nip this thing in the bud...

Tony


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iceblazeModerator
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: ahopp]
      #5655313 - 01/31/13 11:29 PM

This thread is now re-opened. You will notice that almost nothing has changed. We believe that both parties need to be heard here, so long as everyone can play nice. This means we expect constructive, respectful posts, and not vendor bashing. We will also not tolerate any vendor pushing as both of these are direct violations of our ToS. So please, everyone play nice, and if Dr. Hayes and Opticraft wish to work this out publicly, in a respectful manner, then we have no problems with it.

Thanks,

-James

Edited by iceblaze (02/01/13 08:17 PM)


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smallscopefanLeo
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: iceblaze]
      #5656514 - 02/01/13 02:51 PM

Hi Terry, I don't know you but I am happy to see that you defended yourself in a smart fashion here with stunning photos of some projects, which so many posters on this board here can only dream about. Don't listen to the haters. None of them have made things that have been used to success by NASA or University departments. I can't believe that our own astro community would defame and cannibalize each other like this. Glad to see the vendor bashing moderated. It is one thing to have a grievance about service and quality, quite another to drag someone right through the mud, I am not referring to the OP, but to some of the bandwagon jumper-on-ers. It is almost like they want to attempt to destroy this man's business, just sad to read. Doubt it will affect him though, doing work for JPL (I just read that.. crikey). I wish you continued success and good business to you sir as we need more men like you in our society who build things, rather than the so many out there who just seem to want to tear other people and their work down.

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cheapersleeper
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: smallscopefanLeo]
      #5656528 - 02/01/13 02:55 PM

Would not this all have been avoided had a dissatisfied customers concerns been dealt with?

B


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PhaedrusUpshaw
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: iceblaze]
      #5656545 - 02/01/13 03:04 PM

Quote:

This thread is now re-opened. You will notice that almost nothing has changed. We believe that both parties need to be heard here, so long as everyone can play nice. This means we expect constructive, respectful posts, and not vendor bashing. We will also not tolerate any vendor pushing as both of these are direct violations of our ToS. So please, everyone play nice, and if Dr. Hayes and Opticraft wish to work this out publicly, and in a respectful manner, then we have no problems with it.

Thanks,

-James




Good call James, flame wars suck...


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Old Rookie
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: PhaedrusUpshaw]
      #5656604 - 02/01/13 03:39 PM

I've really enjoyed reading these comments. I especially enjoyed looking at the photos provided by Optic Craft. They appear to be well done. I wonder why the OP received equipment from Optic Craft that looked such as it did? Why is the quality that Optic Craft talks about not evident? Does the large customer receive a better quality instrument than the smaller customer? Is Optic Craft really proud of what they sent out? Did they send it out thinking that the OP would be glad just to have it? Did Optic Craft not recognize that it was a piece of ****? If they did, why did they send it out in the first place? Just wondering!!

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Chemisttree
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: iceblaze]
      #5656670 - 02/01/13 04:17 PM

Request that this thread be moved to the vendor forum. Should this matter ever have been presented as an article?

My 2c, worth every penny too.


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andysea
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Chemisttree]
      #5656699 - 02/01/13 04:32 PM

I am a little confused or perhaps I am missing the point. How are all those crednentials and nice pictures going to make the delivered drive and documented emails any better?.

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smallscopefanLeo
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Chemisttree]
      #5656701 - 02/01/13 04:32 PM

Quote:

Request that this thread be moved to the vendor forum. Should this matter ever have been presented as an article?

My 2c, worth every penny too.




I feel that is was in poor taste to present this as an article. There are some legitimate issues raised in my mind, but at the same time many of the complaints had to do with cosmetics which don't appear as though they would have any bearing on the functionality of the product. It is one thing to warn others of a bad experience, but quite another to go out of one's way to make somebody look as bad as can possibly be. There are numerous sides to every story. And for those who might wonder, I have zero connection to this company, and only recall coming across a reference or two to them on here over the years. My only clock drive is a NexStar GT goto mount. I don't really care what the parts inside look like, so long as it works. Sorry but I just have little patience for this sort of behavior online where others are trashed. It is like bullying.


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Footbag
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: smallscopefanLeo]
      #5656731 - 02/01/13 04:45 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Request that this thread be moved to the vendor forum. Should this matter ever have been presented as an article?

My 2c, worth every penny too.




I feel that is was in poor taste to present this as an article. There are some legitimate issues raised in my mind, and at the same time many of the complaints had to do with cosmetics which don't appear as though they would have any bearing on the functionality of the product. It is one thing to warn others of a bad experience, but quite another to go out of one's way to make somebody look as bad as can possibly be. There are numerous sides to every story. And for those who might wonder, I have zero connection to this company, and only recall coming across a reference or two to them on here over the years. My only computerized clock drive is a NexStar GT. I don't really care what the parts inside look like, so long as it works.




I saw the cosmetics as a small problem. The worm being crooked and the quality of the spur gear, are the major issues. Look at the spur, would that even work? It wouldn't for imaging. As others have said, if the tolerance on a single bolt hole was off, that would be enough justification to reject the part; as you would expect NASA or JPL to do. The problems here are numerous and obvious.

If a machine shop provides custom machining to spec, the the custom work is their product. I don't see a better place to review them, then in CN's review section.


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smallscopefanLeo
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Footbag]
      #5656762 - 02/01/13 04:56 PM

Fair enough, I am content with agreeing to disagree on the proper place for this discussion, while I agree with you that some of the machining there does look sloppy. In the article the author notes that:

"He did eventually offer to exchange the spur gear if I would return the unit to him and pay all shipping. At that point, I refused to pay him anything - for shipping or anything else - and I gave up dealing with him."

It looks like there was a bit of back and forth, and like the manufacturer was being stubborn perhaps. Speculation on my part that perhaps I best not venture into. Maybe if the author pushed a bit more he could have gotten a refund, or not have to pay shipping on the exchange, but I agree fully that a buyer should not have to do that in today's economy. Still not a good enough excuse for smearing someone's reputation online in my mind, a growing problem these days. Many of us here are emboldened by our relative anonymity (not referring to the reviewer of course but myself and the rest of us armchair star commandos), and I am no exception to that. I try to be mostly meek but am open to being put in check should I overstep my bounds.

I am 100% for open and honest discussion. But not defamation of a character or business based on one example here. Since this is already in the process of being aired out, let's hear from all sides involved. I don't have a horse in the race, I just care about what is overall fair. I would be very hurt personally to be talked about this way if I felt that I didn't have it coming to me.


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andysea
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: smallscopefanLeo]
      #5656763 - 02/01/13 04:56 PM

I disagree. It appears they the design wasn't executed as per the construction documents.

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okieav8r
I'd rather be flying!
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: andysea]
      #5656828 - 02/01/13 05:36 PM

I don't feel that the OP did anything inappropriate with regard to writing an article about his experience with the vendor. Apparently, neither did Cloudy Nights. If I am not mistaken, articles are submitted and then vetted by CN before they are posted.

Both parties have had their say, and those who have read this thread can make up their own minds.


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jhayes_tucson
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: iceblaze]
      #5657062 - 02/01/13 08:04 PM

I’m glad to see Mr. Clinard’s respond; however, I want to clarify that there is no “misunderstanding” between us. Mr. Clinard accepted an order for a drive with custom specifications. The unit delivered did not meet the specifications we agreed to or my expectations based on his representation of his capabilities and what he promised to deliver. My review was not of any work that Mr. Clinard did for NASA/Godard, Roger Angel, AWR Technology Systems, or any other piece of equipment shown in the pictures that he has uploaded to this forum. My review was vey specific to the product that he delivered and all of the photographs accurately show the condition of the product as it came out of the box. My comments in the review are virtually the same ones that I made directly to him when I received the product and I’ve told you how he responded. I’ve moved on and the sole intent of my review was to provide a community service with some well-documented information about a product and a vendor. The community at large is better off if we share these kinds of experiences--both good and bad. I don’t have any hidden agenda. I gave Mr. Clinard ample opportunity to resolve this issue and he didn't take it so I originally had no intent of trying to get it resolved here. However, Mr. Clinard has privately contacted me to discuss how we might re-open our discussion. So, for now, I’ll take my discussion with him offline and if he wants to do the right thing, I will be the first to come back here to congratulate him publicly.

- John


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iceblazeModerator
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: jhayes_tucson]
      #5657068 - 02/01/13 08:11 PM

Hello John,

Glad to hear you guys are working it out offline, and that he has come back to the table .

-James


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rogercelliott
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: iceblaze]
      #5657518 - 02/02/13 02:17 AM

I bought my OCM drives (Both RA and Dec) back in 1991 and I was quite pleased with their accuracy - especially the RA drive which tracked with very little need to for correction. Sorry to see and hear that he made a bad drive.

Cheers
Roger


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psi_chemie
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: rogercelliott]
      #5657784 - 02/02/13 09:35 AM

Wow Terry it looks like you make a ton of cool stuff. I hope to get into this business someday. This is a great lesson for me. I hope you get it worked out because in my honest opinion, the part did not appear to meet spec, seems like people were having bad days and a personality clash prevented this from being resolved easily.

Thank you everyone for posting this is a valuable learning experience, hope it ends with no hard feelings.

Kind Regards


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atuk
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5658271 - 02/02/13 02:30 PM

The review with evidence is conclusive. This product should be refunded with an apology.
The patent process is specific and requires proof when applying for patents.
Thank you for bringing the QC for OC to our attention.

Albert
Non-Profit Organization

4, 5, 6, 8 inch scopes and looking for 12 inch
The usual 5 foam cases with eyepieces and filters.
T3i astrophotography
Minitower and LXD55 modified mounts


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Agatha
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: atuk]
      #5665538 - 02/06/13 03:41 PM

What DID happen to the postings that are missing??? I have been reading this thread with interest from day one and am a little frustrated with the way this whole thing has been handled. On second thought, I am VERY frustrated. To let this go on as long as it has is ridiculous. I love quality and perfection as much as anybody. But, I have watched CN members act as judge, jury and executioners. I am ashamed.

And, please, do not tell me what I do or do not understand about the issue.
I love Cloudy Nights, but this has gone too far.

Will my post be deleted now too? I sincerely hope not.

Best, Linda B.


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Chucky
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Agatha]
      #5665655 - 02/06/13 04:58 PM

<< reading this thread with interest from day one and am a little frustrated >>

<< ..... as it has is ridiculous. >>

Just curious - if you were (and are) so upset over this, why are you spending so much time reading it? Why not move on to other topics more pleasing to you and avoid the stress?


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Agatha
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Loc: Coulee Region, Wisconsin
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Chucky]
      #5667108 - 02/07/13 01:36 PM

Quote:

Just curious - if you were (and are) so upset over this, why are you spending so much time reading it? Why not move on to other topics more pleasing to you and avoid the stress?





Chucky,

I am here, I'm sure, for the same reason that everyone else is...for information. It certainly doesn't mean that one can't be frustrated.

If you have read the entire thread, which I'm assuming you have, you will notice that there are others who also have expressed their feelings. Are you going to tell them to move on also?

I had heard of Optic Craft many times on the forums here and thought it would be interesting to read a review.

Linda B.


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Agatha
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 06/04/12

Loc: Coulee Region, Wisconsin
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Chucky]
      #5667127 - 02/07/13 01:52 PM

Quote:

the sole intent of my review was to provide a community service with some well-documented information about a product and a vendor. The community at large is better off if we share these kinds of experiences--both good and bad.




The above quote from the author of the review,Mr. John Hayes, is very appropriate. I thank him for the review. And I sincerely hope that the issue could be resolved amicably for both parties.

Best, Linda B.


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iceblazeModerator
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Agatha]
      #5667169 - 02/07/13 02:12 PM

Hello,

If anyone has any questions about moderation taken on these forums, they are more than welcome to contact any moderator or administrator via PM. With that said, let's please keep this thread on topic from here on out

-James


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Chucky
sage
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Reged: 04/16/10

Loc: Dublin, Ohio
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Agatha]
      #5667217 - 02/07/13 02:42 PM

<< Are you going to tell them to move on also? >>

Actually I was just curious as to your thinking considering it was stressing you so. Carry-on as you think best.


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Agatha
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 06/04/12

Loc: Coulee Region, Wisconsin
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Chucky]
      #5667227 - 02/07/13 02:48 PM

Will do.

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jhayes_tucson
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Reged: 08/26/12

Loc: Bend, OR
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Agatha]
      #5669374 - 02/08/13 04:34 PM

When I originally posted my review article, Mr. Clinard and I had concluded our discussions about how to resolve our differences over the product he delivered and I had no intent of continuing that discussion here. As I’ve said, my sole purpose was to provide a factual review for the benefit of the community. However, it was not my intent to destroy Mr. Clinard’s business either so when he contacted me behind the scenes to reopen our discussion, I felt that it was only fair for me to give him a second chance to make it right. He has agreed to do the right thing and stand behind his work with a money back guarantee. We have agreed that my original offer to pay a 10% restocking fee along with all of the shipping was a fair way to unwind this deal. Yesterday I received his check and this afternoon I will ship the drive back to him. I will also work with Cloudy Nights to amend the review to include how this was handled. This whole thing stirred up a lot of reaction but I hope that in the long term there is a positive result. Mr. Clinard has stepped up to address the concerns of his customers and the community and I am certain that he (and perhaps a few other vendors who followed this thread) now appreciate the expectations of the market a bit better. I hope that Mr. Clinard will be able to comment on his own about our discussion and that all of you will give him fair consideration in the future. Finally, I hope that the next article I have a chance to contribute will be far less contentious. In the meantime, happy star gazing!

John


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City Kid
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: jhayes_tucson]
      #5669438 - 02/08/13 05:10 PM

John, I am very happy you reported your experience to all of us. This is the kind of information we all need to be made aware of. Cloudy Nights is one of the few places we can get honest, unbiased reports such as this. It's easy to find positive reviews of all kinds in places such as the major astronomy magazines. It's not always easy to find out the negatives until we experience it for ourselves. This type of honest review can help us avoid an experience such as this. No one should have a problem with an honest review whether it's negative or positive. It benefits us all.

Phil

Edited by City Kid (02/08/13 05:10 PM)


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opticcraft1
Vendor (Optic Craft Machining)


Reged: 05/20/11

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: jhayes_tucson]
      #5669619 - 02/08/13 06:59 PM

I am happy that Dr. Hayes and I could come to an agreement to resolve this issue. After 28 years of manufacturing drive systems for the astronomy community, we work hard to deliver high quality products for a wide variety of applications. Unfortunately, in this case, we shipped some equipment that did not meet our standards or our customer's and we genuinely regret that error. Our commitment to all of our customers is to delight them with the quality, accuracy, and reliability of our products. If we ever fail to do that and we can't make it right, I want everyone to know that we will ultimately stand behind our products with a money back guarantee. I look forward to many more years of serving the community with high quality products, fair prices, and outstanding customer service and thank you for your business.

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rainycityastro
professor emeritus
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Reged: 03/29/10

Loc: Seattle, WA
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: opticcraft1]
      #5669649 - 02/08/13 07:28 PM

I hope the original article stays mostly intact. It will help others contemplating using this machine shop to make the right decision.

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smallscopefanLeo
sage
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Reged: 01/23/11

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: rainycityastro]
      #5670073 - 02/09/13 02:16 AM

Glad to see that things are being resolved bit by bit! I most often in favor of those open avenues of communication and resolution, which can with time and patience accomplish great things (but then what do I really know )

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t.r.
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Reged: 02/14/08

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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: smallscopefanLeo]
      #5670260 - 02/09/13 08:08 AM

Quote:

However, it was not my intent to destroy Mr. Clinard’s business either so when he contacted me behind the scenes to reopen our discussion, I felt that it was only fair for me to give him a second chance to make it right. He has agreed to do the right thing and stand behind his work with a money back guarantee.



In my humble opinion, that should have been the very first response from the vendor...no second chance required! I fully believe the olive branch came only after the story broke and the damage done realized. There was no change of heart due to guilty conscience or ethics...let's be honest with ourselves. Bravo to CloudyNights and Astronomics for providing this service to protect and unite consumers together.


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smallscopefanLeo
sage
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Reged: 01/23/11

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: t.r.]
      #5670751 - 02/09/13 01:24 PM

"When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself."
-Wayne Dyer


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rockethead26
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 10/21/09

Loc: Arizona, USA
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: smallscopefanLeo]
      #5671018 - 02/09/13 04:42 PM

We're judging the work here, not the individual, although the individual is responsible for the quality of work produced.

If I hire a teenager to cut my lawn in the summer and he/she does a poor job, I will let them know what they need to improve and give them another shot. If they still deliver poor work, they get fired. Am I judging the individual or their work? Result is the same. I find another vendor and let other neighbors know not to hire that teen.

What's so wrong here?


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Jim Chung
Vendor - Icodome
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Reged: 12/07/05

Loc: Toronto
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: rockethead26]
      #5677196 - 02/13/13 08:24 AM

Perhaps Dr Hayes would consider amending his article to reflect that Optic Craft have in the end behaved honorably and that he is satisfied with the outcome since many people do not visit this forum nor would they want to read through 5 pages of comments.

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okieav8r
I'd rather be flying!
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Loc: Oklahoma!
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Jim Chung]
      #5677246 - 02/13/13 09:00 AM

Quote:

Perhaps Dr Hayes would consider amending his article to reflect that Optic Craft have in the end behaved honorably and that he is satisfied with the outcome since many people do not visit this forum nor would they want to read through 5 pages of comments.




I'll wager he'll follow up.


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rdandrea
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: okieav8r]
      #5677687 - 02/13/13 01:24 PM

Quote:

I'll wager he'll follow up.




I think he already said he would, but I think he needs the Mods' help in effecting an edit.


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telescopemullet
professor emeritus
****

Reged: 11/16/09

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: opticcraft1]
      #5677712 - 02/13/13 01:38 PM

Quote:

Further comments from Optic Craft Machining Co.

Attached is simple design 2” shaft diameter simple bushing design equatorial mounting using one 6.6” clock drive, wedge and fabricated oak tripod. Max size OTS 10” F/4.5 or 6” f/10 refractor.

All positive operating reports from my customers.

Terry Clinard Optic Craft Machining Co.




Pictured above is the mount that OC made for my ISTAR 6"f15 a couple years ago now. The mount continues to preform flawlessly. When I first got my mount I had numerous conversations with OC about how to assemble it, he even interrupted his dinner one time for me if I recall.

Sorry to hear about the bad unit that OC shipped out.


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jhayes_tucson
sage
*****

Reged: 08/26/12

Loc: Bend, OR
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: telescopemullet]
      #5677780 - 02/13/13 02:26 PM

I am indeed working with the CN administrators to add a postscript to the review so stay tuned.
John


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jhayes_tucson
sage
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Reged: 08/26/12

Loc: Bend, OR
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: jhayes_tucson]
      #5689947 - 02/19/13 11:15 PM

The admins at CN are pretty busy and even though I submitted a postscript to the review a while ago, it may take a while to work it's way through all the current stuff they are working on. I want to make sure that it at least appears on the forum so here is what I submitted:

Postscript
After this review was posted, Mr. Clinard contacted me privately to reopen our discussion about resolving this issue. After our initial discussions ended, I felt that I owned the drive and my intent was to review it as a community service--not to leverage a more favorable response. However, I wasn’t out to destroy Mr. Clinard’s business either so when he contacted me, I felt that it was reasonable to give him a second chance to make it right. Mr. Clinard eagerly agreed to refund the price of the drive minus a 10% restocking charge and I agreed to pay all of the shipping. The deal is done and he has refunded my money and I have returned the drive.

Mr. Clinard has assured me privately that this drive did not meet his standards and that he will redouble his efforts to delivery high quality products. He has also publically stated that he will always try to make it right and if he can’t, he will stand behind his products with a money back guarantee. It’s unfortunate that we had go through this process but in the end, I believe that it has had a positive effect on the market and I applaud Mr. Clinard for ultimately doing the right thing. He and I both learned a lot from this episode and I believe that Mr. Clinard will be very responsive moving forward. We have since had some very friendly conversations about how to delight customers and I certainly hope that he receives fair consideration in the future.


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Chucky
sage
*****

Reged: 04/16/10

Loc: Dublin, Ohio
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: jhayes_tucson]
      #5690247 - 02/20/13 06:43 AM

<< He and I both learned a lot from this episode >>

I certainly hope so. It's just too bad the both of you couldn't have worked out things privately.


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stome02
newbie


Reged: 02/20/13

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #5690957 - 02/20/13 01:49 PM

I had a similar negative experience with quality issues with my drive from Optic Craft Machining. After attempting to improve the tolerances and performance of the existing design, I scrapped everything but the worm gear and wheel, bought my own lathe and milling machine and fabricated my own bearing blocks. I had a new clutch made by PreciseParts. Even the motor had to be replaced due to vibration issues! I'm sorry to say that I would never buy another Optic Craft product. Buy a Byers gear set if you can find them. If you don't do your own machining, I've had nothing but positive experiences with PreciseParts. Before I bought my lathe and milling machine, I used them to fabricate all of my parts, at prices much lower than I expected. They even anodize the parts. One thing I can say, I've become a better machinist! I'm learning how to TIG weld now :0)

ST


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PGW Steve
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 10/03/06

Loc: Winnipeg, Canada
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: stome02]
      #5704299 - 02/27/13 09:21 PM

I think is sad you ended up on the hook for a 're-stocking fee' and the shipping. Considering that OC admitted it was in error and provided a sub-standard product, this horrible experience cost you a lot of time and aggravation, plus the further insult of a financial hit.

I'm not impressed.


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City Kid
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 05/06/09

Loc: Northern Indiana
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: PGW Steve]
      #5705984 - 02/28/13 06:57 PM

Quote:

I think is sad you ended up on the hook for a 're-stocking fee' and the shipping. Considering that OC admitted it was in error and provided a sub-standard product, this horrible experience cost you a lot of time and aggravation, plus the further insult of a financial hit.

I'm not impressed.



I agree.


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johnnyha
Postmaster
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Reged: 11/12/06

Loc: Sherman Oaks, CA
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review *DELETED* new [Re: City Kid]
      #5706147 - 02/28/13 08:34 PM

Post deleted by johnnyha

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telescopemullet
professor emeritus
****

Reged: 11/16/09

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: johnnyha]
      #5706410 - 02/28/13 11:33 PM

I would ask a moderator to remove the johnnyha post as it borders on slander. Enough of this negative posting diarrhea.

Edited by telescopemullet (02/28/13 11:34 PM)


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smallscopefanLeo
sage
*****

Reged: 01/23/11

Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: telescopemullet]
      #5706475 - 03/01/13 12:36 AM

Quote:

Enough of this negative posting diarrhea.




+1 (regarding posters here in general, not any one person)

Cloudy Nights community, "I am dissapoint"



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johnnyha
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Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: smallscopefanLeo]
      #5706479 - 03/01/13 12:39 AM

I sincerely apologize if I forefended anyone with what was obviously a joke.

I'm fairly confident my statements will stand up in a court of law. But at the risk of locking this thread I will delete my previous post (Hint: there IS NO SHOW called "Top Machinist" and I retract my statement that this guy would lose the first Quick Challenge.).


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jhayes_tucson
sage
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Reged: 08/26/12

Loc: Bend, OR
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: City Kid]
      #5707034 - 03/01/13 11:40 AM

I was the one who proposed the restocking fee. I had ordered a custom configuration and it is common to pay a restocking fee if a custom order has to be returned. Although the drive did not meet specifications, I felt that it was fair to pay shipping and the restocking fee. I was trying to be as reasonable as possible in this negotiation. When Mr. Clinard finally offered to unwind the deal, I was not trying to take advantage of him and went back to my original offer to return the drive.

I want to add a couple of thoughts here. Mr. Clinard clearly made a huge mistake when he delivered this drive and refused stand behind the product. He has acknowledged his mistakes and I've since had a number of behind the scenes friendly email exchanges with him. I have to tell you that it really sounds like he has come away with a whole new perspective on customer satisfaction. He comes across as a sincere guy who is trying his best. I still don't know how his shop is equipped and I have never seen any of his other work, so it's hard for me to say how he'll do on future orders. My guess is that within the range of his capabilities, he will try very hard to meet expectations. He's been around for a long time so I have to believe that he has delivered a lot of acceptable equipment. Hopefully this review will provide some guidance for anyone who wants to order anything from OCM. My understanding is that Ed Byers has cleaned out the last few drives from his shop and there just aren't many folks still making clock drive gears so OCM might be your only option.


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cspell
journeyman


Reged: 05/14/11

Loc: NJ
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: jhayes_tucson]
      #5748904 - 03/22/13 01:02 AM

Like others, I’m so glad to see the issue was apparently resolved. My recent quest for a mount (two requirements: hold a 50 lb OTA very steady for photometry, and at a price south of 3000) led me to Optic-craft and Terry Clinard. Having just received the system, my own experience was that the customer service and communication was great throughout the process- when I changed my mind about everything from optical encoders to the paint and styling, Terry accommodated my many wishes, changes and questions. When Terry became ill he notified me that shipment might be delayed a couple of weeks. After delivery he called me, over a weekend, to make sure the shipment arrived and there were no problems. The mount that arrived looks great, as does the 9-inch drive (I may post a photo when I get things set up).

I don’t write this to challenge the OP in any way; rather I thought I would give my perspective due to some of the comments that caused so much controversy earlier. I’m very happy with the product and the service. Clear and steady skies to all!


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azure1961p
Postmaster
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Reged: 01/17/09

Loc: USA
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review *DELETED* new [Re: Howie Glatter]
      #5774371 - 04/02/13 10:58 PM

Thanks for this review.

Pete


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BYoesle
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Reged: 06/12/04

Loc: Goldendale, Washington USA
Re: Optic Craft Machining Clock Drive Review new [Re: stome02]
      #5813309 - 04/21/13 03:07 PM

Quote:

Quality is your conception, not mine. I do not know how to answer your quality questions in light of never having a problem in the past 23 years of making drives from my numerous world wide customers... (Quote from Review)

I do not get negative reports from the field and consider this situation with Mr. Hayes to be an anomaly. (Quote from above)




This is not true, and Mr. Clinard knows it is not true. Therefore Mr. Clinard appears to have made a deliberately false statement to Mr. Hayes and on this forum.

I have also documented concerns previously on Cloudy Nights: http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbarchive/showflat.php/Cat/0/Number/1253787/page...

John Hayes' review is completely accurate, and more importantly is not an anomaly. I experienced nearly identical issues, which Mr. Clinard refused to address - see post linked to above. The Optic-Craft drive I paid $1200 (!!!) for was inferior to any other I have owned. It in no way met the specifications I had requested at the time of order.

Quote:

My comments in the review are virtually the same ones that I made directly to him when I received the product and I’ve told you how he responded. I’ve moved on and the sole intent of my review was to provide a community service with some well-documented information about a product and a vendor. The community at large is better off if we share these kinds of experiences--both good and bad. I don’t have any hidden agenda. I gave Mr. Clinard ample opportunity to resolve this issue and he didn't take it so I originally had no intent of trying to get it resolved here...




Emphasis added.

This is not “vendor bashing” - it is the truth with regard to product quality, value, service, and business practices / ethics.

Quote:

He has also publically stated that he will always try to make it right and if he can’t, he will stand behind his products with a money back guarantee.




There is no such “money back guarantee” anywhere on Mr. Clinard’s Optic-Craft web site. Few potential purchasers will ever see this thread to be able to hold him accountable to this "guarantee." And where does the statement refer to what the "guarantee" is for? Is it the tracking rate? What about defects of materials and workmanship? Or failure to meet specifications per industry standards and best practices? Would he agree to neutral arbitration for disputes and neutral review by a qualified machinist of his work -- in writing? I sincerely doubt it.

Quote:

<< He and I both learned a lot from this episode >>

I certainly hope so. It's just too bad the both of you couldn't have worked out things privately.




As is similarly documented by Mr. Hayes, when I attempted to deal with Mr. Clinard “privately,” he became defensive, evasive, and ambivalent, and refused to refund me a dime for his similarly documented substandard workmanship. His only “warranty” is for “5 years parts and labor,” and is for the “accuracy” specification that “Drives produce one revolution in 1436.3 minutes +- 3 ARC second per sidereal day.”

This is what he explicitly told me when I requested a return and refund, and why he refused multiple additional requests to for a partial refund.

Perhaps I should have posted a review such as Mr. Hayes has done...

Quote:

I fully believe the olive branch came only after the story broke and the damage done realized. There was no change of heart due to guilty conscience or ethics...let's be honest with ourselves. Bravo to CloudyNights and Astronomics for providing this service to protect and unite consumers together.




Indeed.

Mr. Clinard / Optic-Craft Machining promises a high-end product – at a high-end price – and touts deliveries to NASA, JPL, universities, etc, and posts pretty pictures. What you'll likely get is the defective rubbish like that documented by Mr. Hayes, myself, and others, which you can not under normal circumstances return for a refund.

You have been warned.


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