Truth About Skystream & SWWP

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  • halfcrazyhalfcrazy Solar Expert Posts: 718 ✭✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    the chinook promises to be a great turbine it is rated truthfully unlike the air turbines. we had one at Midnite solar's booth last year in Vermont and i was impressed. boB has been running one as well for testing of the classic.
  • peterakopeterako Solar Expert Posts: 144 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Mike. sorry if i wash not clear i am not talking about your like but the one above yours. from KENPUTER and the link to deltechnet.

    Mike yours is clean as always.

    p.s. because i have my setup very safe i avoided the virus from the deltechnet site.

    if a moderator can remove the link we will be helping all.

    Thanks peter evenhuis Greece8)
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,185 admin
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Sorry--You where clear--but I missed the link you where typing about the first time... I have "fixed" the post and added a warning.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP
    peterako wrote: »
    p.s. because i have my setup very safe i avoided the virus from the deltechnet site.

    There is no virus there at that link, it is a false hit with older versions of AV, update your AV and it will go away.
  • dwhdwh Solar Expert Posts: 1,341 ✭✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Yea, deltechnet was clean for me with Avast av - their HTML is crappy though, comes out badly formatted in Firefox.
  • tmcmurrantmcmurran Registered Users Posts: 21
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Nothing too much more to add here, except I have been trying to get my 100 repaired with little help from SWWP. The unit had not been flying for a year and what you see in the images is what you get.

    When I first contacted SWWP they told me to pull it down to take more photo's to send in. OK, I work offshore. I get back home once every few months and needed to pull this down in 60kmh with gusts to 75kmh, snow, rain. So ya I was not too impressed. Now not hearing anything really is starting to bother me. I will be gone again soon for another three months and it seems that by the time these people get back to me I would be better off to have power lines put in.
  • tmcmurrantmcmurran Registered Users Posts: 21
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP
    kenputer wrote: »
    Anybody have any info on the new DLCC for the whisper 100 that is avalible from www.deltechnet.com that will help make the whisper produce power in winds under 12 mph?

    [from moderator: Comfirmed link should be fine by Windsun--probably an older antivirus program/def file.-Bill B.]

    I was trying to purchase one of these, but with no luck. They keep pushing the dates back on them. Last I heard was to put your name in and they would get back to you when they were ready to ship. Still nothing. Maybe they should be sending a few out for testing by owners before a mass marketing of a product that has yet to see the stores.
  • peterakopeterako Solar Expert Posts: 144 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Tmcmurran It looks to me that it got frozen up, and the damage from the expansion created this. Also mine has rust ( minor ) and i sprayed Teflon spray to control this.

    but i think replacing the magnets is the easier route for you.

    Greetings from Greece
  • tmcmurrantmcmurran Registered Users Posts: 21
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP
    peterako wrote: »
    Tmcmurran It looks to me that it got frozen up, and the damage from the expansion created this. Also mine has rust ( minor ) and i sprayed Teflon spray to control this.

    but i think replacing the magnets is the easier route for you.

    Greetings from Greece

    Thanks for the idea with the teflon. I am not too sure about ice since it never really gets cold enough long enough without wind. High winds is what I thought might have caused the bolts to snap, but who really knows. We have this running for upto three months at a time without going out to the house. The people across the road call if they notice anything funny since it is a four hour drive just for a check up and I have access to weather data 24/7 for the area.

    I am going to see about cleaning it up and spraying it. But I guess I need to wait to hear back from SWWP regarding the magnet can issue. I also have the tower mounting bearing grinding, so not sure if I can pull that out clean and re-pack it to save it. Right about now I would be happy to have them send me a new head unit and be done with it. The turbine is only a year old, and had only been up for maybe 9 months till I took it down the other day.
  • kenputerkenputer Solar Expert Posts: 27
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Hi Ken,

    We have the units by 15.0509 her in stock. Our web page is www.deltechnet.com
    The cost is $299.-- Canadian dollars.
    I have attached the installation video and pic to this e-mail.

    Thanks and have a nice day

    Ulrich


    the units for the whisper are ready to go judging by the email I recieved
  • tmcmurrantmcmurran Registered Users Posts: 21
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Well after still no help from SWWP, I thought I had best do what I could for myself till they decide to get involved in the repair/replacement of the product in question. I was able to obtain a reply from SWWP that tells me they are five days behind in responding to email Well, since my initial contact was two months ago it looks like I was pushed to the back of the line again. But yesterday was five days, so I guess today makes six.

    I was able to clean up the head unit pretty well, and correct the problem with the slip rings. I found that it was not the bearing as I first thought, but brass shavings from the brushes that were causing the grinding and loud screech as it turned. Cleaned it all up with a good blast of air put it back together and smooth sailing.

    Now I need SWWP to replace the Magnet Can. Thats the one part I can not fix. Too bad you can not back charge SWWP for loss of power and gas for the generator while waiting ;-) That might get them to work a little quicker. Thank god I put a stop payment on the Skystream I had ordered. Seeing that they are so bad with customer service makes me really start to wonder if it is time to move on to Bergy.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,185 admin
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Just and FYI--Be really careful with stop payments on checks... In many (all?) places in the US, stopping payment can cause legal problems for you...

    For California how a business would attempt to recover the funds from a stopped check:
    The following conditions must be met in the case of a stop payment check:
    1. You must send the maker of the check by certified mail a notice providing the information given in the sample below.
    2. You must produce in court a copy of your written demand and a signed, certified mail receipt showing its delivery, or attempted delivery if refused, to the maker's address.
    3. You must prove that the maker did not stop payment in order to resolve a good faith dispute with you. Examples of a good faith dispute would be the maker's claim that the goods were not delivered, were defective or that there was an overcharge.
    4. You must be able to show in court that you made a reasonable effort to resolve the dispute before going to court.
    If you have not received payment within 30 days from the date you mailed the notice you may file your claim in Small Claims ($5,000 limit) or in Municipal Court.
    And if the court decides for the person receiving the check:
    If you sue someone who has stopped payment on a check written to you, it is possible under some circumstances to be awarded the damages allowed by the "bad check" law under section 1719 of the California Civil Code. These damages would be, in addition to the face value of the check, three times the amount of the check with at least a $100 penalty and a maximum of $1500.

    Changing your mind on a purchase may not be a good enough reason. And the vendor could (probably) still choose to fulfill their side of the contract and ship the product (even knowing you stopped payment)--then attempt collection (or even place a "mechanic's lean" on your property--which many contractors do by practice when doing work and expecting payment at the end--I even had several leans placed on my home because the neighbor's vendor wrote down the wrong address and place the lean on my home--fortunately, they acknowledged their mistake).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • tmcmurrantmcmurran Registered Users Posts: 21
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP
    BB. wrote: »
    Just and FYI--Be really careful with stop payments on checks... In many (all?) places in the US, stopping payment can cause legal problems for you...

    For California how a business would attempt to recover the funds from a stopped check:

    And if the court decides for the person receiving the check:



    Changing your mind on a purchase may not be a good enough reason. And the vendor could (probably) still choose to fulfill their side of the contract and ship the product (even knowing you stopped payment)--then attempt collection (or even place a "mechanic's lean" on your property--which many contractors do by practice when doing work and expecting payment at the end--I even had several leans placed on my home because the neighbor's vendor wrote down the wrong address and place the lean on my home--fortunately, they acknowledged their mistake).

    -Bill

    Thanks for the heads up, but not too worried since I am not in the US, and the contractor I had placed the order with is local to me. It is a loss for SWWP and the contractor at this point since they will not have a sale, he will not get a commission or the fee for the installation. It was the SWWP re-seller that told me to back off at this time due to the issues at SWWP. He wants to know if he should even carry the line after all the issues he and his customers have been going through.

    Pretty poor thing though since I really do like the brand when it works that is :-/
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,030 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP
    tmcmurran wrote: »
    .... I found that it was not the bearing as I first thought, but brass shavings from the brushes that were causing the grinding and loud screech as it turned. ...
    ... makes me really start to wonder if it is time to move on to Bergy

    I'd plan on that move. (To Bergy)

    From what I see in photo #2, of the armature, you are only a short time away from junk. Aside from being built bassackwards (look at your CAR alternator), the enamel wire is not secure or potted. it's just wedged in with string and phenolic board. (or is that waxed cardboard?) Unbelievable ! For something out in the weather, that spins, I don't have a lot of faith. I won't begin to try to understand why they don't wind the coils into the case, and spin the magnet, but then they can't sell replacement slip rings.
    Power = movement between magnet & wire. Makes no difference which part moves.
    See DIY construction article:
    http://www.dangerouslaboratories.org/altp1.html
    Arggh!
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,185 admin
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP
    tmcmurran wrote: »
    Well after still no help from SWWP, I thought I had best do what I could for myself till they decide to get involved in the repair/replacement of the product in question. I was able to obtain a reply from SWWP that tells me they are five days behind in responding to email Well, since my initial contact was two months ago it looks like I was pushed to the back of the line again. But yesterday was five days, so I guess today makes six.

    Tmcmurran did get reply from SWWP (full mechanical replacement)--Posted in this new thread:

    Dealing with SWWP - The Response

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • System2System2 Posts: 6,290 admin
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Truth about skysteam,

    I just wanted to say that I was one of the original Beta testers for the skystream back in 2006 and have spoken to and meet both Jay and Andy at my location and I think they are both good guys and do care about the product. I agree that SWWP rushed the skystream to the public before it was ready and I think many of the Beta testers will tell you the same thing. That being said, SWWP have been very good in fixing any problems that have arisen with my turbine. While the fix may not have been as fast as I would have liked they sent out new a turbine and even sent Jay Yeager out to my location as well as another location on the east coast to assist in the re-install and inspection of the failed turbine (original beta turbine failed in about 6 months).


    My turbine has been lowered three times since we first raised it back in July 2006 (one of the original beta machines) once for replacement of the original beta turbine, once for the replacement of the Inverter and alternator and once to re-set the latching relay. The last time was back in February 2008. With the exception of some interment communication problems the turbine had operated properly for the last 16 months. When I contacted SWWP about the communication problem they said they would send me a new inverter and the Zigbee communication package to replace the current communication package and inverter. I was told there was about a 8 week delay in filling that order which was not a problem for me since the turbine was working fine just some on an off communication problems. While I did not receive the replacement inverter/ comm. package in 8 weeks I did receive an unsolicited email from SWWP in week 9 with the tracking information for the shipment and a prepaid return label to send the old inverter back to SWWP. I received the new inverter/comm. package about 5 days later. I have yet had the time to lower the turbine and install the new parts but will as soon as time permits.

    Here is a cut and past from an email I received from SWWP

    I have omitted the SWWP employees last name and phone number.


    Carl,
    Thanks for the update. I think you will be pleased with the new communication platform and Skyview 2.0 software. Please let us know how that works out.



    Southwest Windpower
    928-226-62
    www.windenergy.com
    Please consider the environment before printing this email.




    Michael,

    While we don’t have a very good wind resource here the turbine has been working fine for the most part for over a year now without needing any attention. We did have a communications problem a few months back and SWWP sent me a new inverter and communication package to install and that should solve the problem. If it ever stops raining here I will lower the turbine and replace it.

    Carl

    Original Message
    From:
    Sent: Thursday, May 07, 2009 5:36 PM
    To
    Subject: Your Skystream

    Carl,
    I know you’ve had your Skystream for some time, with CBS and other press coverage in 2006. I’m just following up on some of our early success stories to see how systems are performing over time. How has it been doing for you?



    Southwest Windpower

    www.windenergy.com
    Please consider the environment before printing this email.
  • System2System2 Posts: 6,290 admin
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Looking to get into Skystream installations. Would it be worth it to propose purchasing 1 and installing it as a "test" unit to make sure the bugs are out?
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,185 admin
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Jon,

    That is a complex question... It would be very nice if you had your own unit up and running so your potential customers (and their neighbors) can see, hear, and see your output over time.

    And you would gain experience with the product.

    However, doing an evaluation of one is always a tough call... If you have a good experience--will 9 out of 10 of your customers also have a good experience? Cannot predict that.

    Can you wait a period of months for you to get sufficient time on your install before you go out and "sell" the system to your customers?

    In any case, it may do you well to look into several vendors (large/small, grid tie/off-grid) so that you are not tied into one vendor/solution only.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • dwhdwh Solar Expert Posts: 1,341 ✭✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP
    carlb wrote: »

    Original Message
    From:
    Sent: Thursday, May 07, 2009 5:36 PM
    To
    Subject: Your Skystream

    Carl,
    I know you’ve had your Skystream for some time, with CBS and other press coverage in 2006. I’m just following up on some of our early success stories to see how systems are performing over time. How has it been doing for you?



    Southwest Windpower

    www.windenergy.com
    Please consider the environment before printing this email.


    Hrmm..

    Nice of them to be so caring of their customers...well, at least their customers who have spoken to the press...and might be the subject for some bored reporter's "follow up" story down the road.
  • System2System2 Posts: 6,290 admin
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    As a SWWP dealer I Will let you guys know that I had an out-of-the box failure rate for Skystreams of about 90% for my first 10 machines. Since the new relay boards, communications packaging, and my hole drilling. That has gone down to about 10%.

    I no longer offer service warranties on the product due to the failure rate. While we gladly install the machine, it is not done without a serious meeting with the customer to explain our history with the machine.

    Want to be a Skystream Dealer?

    All you need to do is call SWWP and tell them you think Skystream is the best and that you will handle it exclusively. They love that kind of dealer. Tell them you carry more than one make and model and that you focus on educating customers, they blow you off.

    If you have been around awhile then you know that what TruthSquad says is completely accurate. I have an AirX, Air 403, a whisper H40, and a Whisper 200 that ALL failed within 7 years.
  • System2System2 Posts: 6,290 admin
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    We are also a dealer of the Skystream wind turbine. We are at a 35% failure rate and that includes the latest zigbee version. Everytime a customer has a problem with a turbine you can count on a 2 month downtime. The reasons for this are numerous but include; lack of timely response to emails or calls, using stall tactics to not send out parts and poor coordination with shipping of parts.
    The origanal post from the former SWWP employee was correct, they do not listen to their dealers or their customers. Their dealer reps do not stand up for what is right. Who knows maybe they are fearful of losing their jobs if they speak out. As a dealer if you speak out you will be blackballed as the previous blog said.

    With that said, the Skystream has the potential to be a great product. If it starts using quality components and hires someone from the outside who knows customer service, this company could take off.
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,311 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    i don't blame the employees for what has transpired at swwp as this was upper management failures and decisions in my view. the op has been threatened by swwp by a lawsuit if he didn't shutup. this company is taking advantage of people with poor products and service and gives the wind industry a further black mark against it. they figured that they can threaten people and shut them up to allow the further taking advantage of unsuspecting future clients. buy at your own risk imho as to me that would be like playing russian roulette with a 6 shooter that has 5 bullets in it.
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,311 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    well they can't do anything to you for printing something that is already in print.:-);):D
  • halfcrazyhalfcrazy Solar Expert Posts: 718 ✭✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    They layed off Quality Control people??? Where to start if they even had QC how was all the rubbish getting out the door.

    I was very dishearted to here Andy brag up his product at the Small wind conference this year. He was called to task on his 30 ft towers but just said he was giving his customers choices. He closed by saying he moves 300 units a month so he is king of the hill. The sad part is SWWP only cares about numbers how many units are shipping etc.
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    I think one of the biggest problems that SWWP had/has is that they bought into the Obama/Green Shoots hype and overexpanded on hope rather than reality.

    They are not the only ones though, the stocks of a lot of the publicly traded solar and renewables companies are down quite a bit - some as much as 75% from a year or two ago. Akeena Solar (AKNS) for example hit a high of $15 in early 2008, as of today it is trading at around $1.25.
  • Truth SquadTruth Squad Solar Expert Posts: 126 ✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    I want to say a few things. This is still America and we still have a First Amendment. I'm not revealing any company secrets in what I'm going to say, so if SWWP is reading this, they need to chill out.

    The first rounds of layoffs was hard enough. You know, you spend ten years in a place, you get to know people well. They're your friends. I know, business doesn't run on friendship. But there's more to it.

    When I started at SWWP, we were at 2131 N. First Street, Flagstaff, Arizona. I can still remember Northern Arizona Wind and Sun backing a pick-up to the loading dock to pick up an Air unit or two. I can still remember walk-in repairs for the Air from people living in what are called "The Forties" here (you'd have to live here to know The Forties.) We had a small crew and we all cared about the product and each other. A lot of the improvements came out of production and warranty. We had ideas on making the product better; everyone looked for them. When we'd make a monthly goal, the ops manager or David himself would take us to La Fonda or Dara Thai for lunch.

    Now I see this second round of layoffs and wonder who else has lost their job. I would know each and every one of them. I know of two of them so far. One of whom I worked with from day one and one started a month after I did. These are friends of mine. I don't know how the people who are being laid off are going to make it. Some of them have mortgage payments to make. This was just as true of the people laid off in the first round. I think back to the "old days" when we were all there at 2131 working together and it makes me sad to see what SWWP has become. I wonder if the newer employees know that we "old employees" basically built SWWP.

    Companies change, it's true. But how much gets lost in that "change"? Isn't that the question? The local paper says the company is moving to Phoenix and people have remarked in the "Comments" section online they may move manufacturing to China. If that's true, what a genuine shame. I remember how happy SWWP was when we had "Made in USA" added to the die for Air body castings. Companies tend to think that employees are replaceable, like parts in a machine. In some cases, that may be true. But what of the belief that human beings are replaceable? Has anyone pondered that? Especially when they are being deprived of the ability to pay for food, rent/house payments, electricity, gas, etc.? Especially when they did a good job. How can you be claiming to be trying to "save the planet" if you treat human beings this way?

    I lost my job and my friends lost their jobs. Now more friends have lost their jobs. How many more will lose their jobs? The company we all built is done with us. We'll go on, having to start all over again since companies rarely start you at your last wage. This town is tough to find jobs in, especially good paying jobs. This county thinks a teacher's aide for at-risk youth is only worth $12.00 an hour. That's probably why youth remains at-risk. Some people will probably have to move out of Flagstaff to find work.

    I'm just putting a human face on the whole thing here. So far, 29 people have lost their jobs at Southwest Windpower. Many had put in the time with the intention of making this their career. Perhaps to retire from SWWP. And now, they can't. They'll have to start over at 40+ years old in a tight job market. And if we did lose our jobs because people in China work cheaper, all I can say is it is sickening. What the hell happened to this country?
  • dwhdwh Solar Expert Posts: 1,341 ✭✭✭
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    Yea. American Tax Dollars at work - buying RE products made in China.

    Gotta love politicians and their idea of how to apply "stimulus" to the economy.
  • dlenoxdlenox Solar Expert Posts: 42
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    gost,

    The one 'happy SWWP customer' seems to be the norm at least in a 100 mile radius.

    I know one installer here in WV that has about 7 unhappy ones and a single one that the SkyScream appears to be producing ok.

    Dan Lenox
  • System2System2 Posts: 6,290 admin
    Re: Truth About Skystream & SWWP

    I am one of those Skystream customers in WV and I may be the 1 that Dan is referring to as "satisfied". Well I am not satisfied any more. Having had the Inverter replaced and the remote monitor replaced 3 times I still have no communication with the Skystream. Therefore I installed a Meter on the feed from the Skystream and now I know exactly how much Power it is producing. Since April 22,2009 it has produced 22 KWH. A far cry from what the Southwest Hype says it will make. It seems that when it is spinning in a 15 - 20mph wind it makes a few hundred watts, certainly nothing near the 2kw they claim. I recently installed 4 - 220watt Solar panels and they have made 38 KWH in 10 days. Another problem has shown up.....when the Skystream is producing the Inverters for my Solar Panels go offline due to "Grid Instability, AC Power out of range, and AC Frequency out of range". In order to get the power from the Solar, I have to shut down the Skystream during the day and only use it at night. I think my investment in the Skystream was a big mistake. Unfortunately I bought it in March of 2007 before all this information came to light. I look for Southwest to lose most of their Dealers because the Dealers can't satisfy the customers due to the problems with Southwest putting out a product that doesn't do what they say it will and not being very willing to do anything about it. As has been said here, they are all about getting product out the door, attracting investors, and creating an IPO. Companies that operate like that don't last. They have succeded in converting me from a Windpower Fan to a Solar Fan.

    L. Cullison
    Kingwood, WV.
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