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Bryanjb

WH Autopilots

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1334949064[/url]' post='3681336']

Does anyone know if WH Autopilots in Bainbridge Island is still in business. I'm trying to place an order and can't get through via e-mail or phone.

 

Thanks

 

 

 

WH Autopilot

 

I can check when I get back to Bainbridge Island in a couple of days......

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Does anyone know if WH Autopilots in Bainbridge Island is still in business. I'm trying to place an order and can't get through via e-mail or phone.

 

Thanks

 

 

 

WH Autopilot

 

They are answering the phone now and stated they will answer up to midnight every night.

 

206-780-2175

866-949-4253

 

www.whautopilots.com

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I have a WH Autopilot. It has worked flawlessly for 5 years and is the only company I have EVER dealt with where the president of the company answers the phone every day and goes over any problems you have (he also uses only US made parts thru out the equipment). Very old school but pretty amazing in this day and age but don't believe me ask Steve Daschew.

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Maybe a stupid question here but have their design been updated or are they agricultural looking still.

 

(I've only seen their setup on a couple different CHB trawlers.)

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Thanks everyone. I'll call again next week, maybe they are slammed and unable answer emails or phone calls. We are very happy with the WH a/p, the only problem is the fluxgate is acting up. We'll upgrade to the gyro when we get through to them.

 

Yes the pilot looks industrial but it works great, it's quick and robust. If we had to buy again it would be a WH.

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He has great stuff. His name IS the Company (His initials ARE WH)

 

My concern is - How old is the guy? He has been in business for a long time. He is the designer, engineer, customer service, tech support, AND President.

 

I have used the WH on sail and power. Introduced to them by an engineer who did mega research before outfitting his boat and used the WH for about 3000NM on that boat.

 

When I was in the IT field we always tried to leave everything in proper order so that if we were "hit by the bus" (our euphemism for fired, quit, jailed, or yes even, crushed by a bus)that the IT operations could continue without anyone who, for whatever reason, never showed up again.

 

That is the biggest consideration about WH autopilots to me. I mean, who is going to support them when (not if) the Great Autopilot in the Sky brings WH home so to speak? Or he gets a midlife crises and moves to Bali, or wants to retire and sells the biz to someone else? or a million other things.

 

He def has some of the best, most reliable, user tunable equip there is. I have NO doubt about THAT.

 

And, Hobot, it IS still quite industrial looking, but I guess that is the trade off for reliability.

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-----------

and used the WH for about 3000NM on that boat.

----------------

 

That is to say 'I' was aboard for almost 3000nm of autopilot on that boat. Of course with and engineer for a skipper no one checked the hydraulic fluid in the pump, until we started hearing the hammering that is. 4 experienced sailor (skipper is a mechanical engineer too) and NO ONE checked the fluid till to late.

 

But that wasn't WH's fault. You can't really design for IDIOCY!

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That is a concern but Will seems to be an on the ball kind of guy and he must have an exit strategy. As long as the business has profitable sales it has a value and the heirs would want that value, they sure are busy enough. I assume someone would buy the business and continue to operate it.

 

All said, we may just place an order this summer for a spare replacement a/p (drive, control head, compass, and pilot control)

 

He has great stuff. His name IS the Company (His initials ARE WH)

 

My concern is - How old is the guy? He has been in business for a long time. He is the designer, engineer, customer service, tech support, AND President.

 

I have used the WH on sail and power. Introduced to them by an engineer who did mega research before outfitting his boat and used the WH for about 3000NM on that boat.

 

When I was in the IT field we always tried to leave everything in proper order so that if we were "hit by the bus" (our euphemism for fired, quit, jailed, or yes even, crushed by a bus)that the IT operations could continue without anyone who, for whatever reason, never showed up again.

 

That is the biggest consideration about WH autopilots to me. I mean, who is going to support them when (not if) the Great Autopilot in the Sky brings WH home so to speak? Or he gets a midlife crises and moves to Bali, or wants to retire and sells the biz to someone else? or a million other things.

 

He def has some of the best, most reliable, user tunable equip there is. I have NO doubt about THAT.

 

And, Hobot, it IS still quite industrial looking, but I guess that is the trade off for reliability.

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------

he must have an exit strategy. As long as the business has profitable sales it has a value and the heirs would want that value, they sure are busy enough. I assume someone would buy the business and continue to operate it.

-------

 

This is NO comment about WH Autopilots per se. Just a comment about business in general.

 

I have seen that EXACT scenario with several (at least 4 I have personal knowledge/dealings with) small family businesses, and within 2-4 years they are G-O-N-E.

 

One business like this was purchased just so the new owners could use the good name/credit of the company while they took loans, racked up bills, etc etc, and pulled a runner within 36 months.

 

Again - this is no comment on WH in particular, it just worries me about ANY really small biz.

 

Of course big companies change product lines, sell out to bigger companies, change standards, drop support for products, change distributors - and so on and so on.

 

What's a sailor to do?

 

I will tag here again - WH is still the most reliable, user tunable AP I have used.

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New gyro arrived. Like I said earlier, we are happy with the unit and most likely will order a spare pilot from WH. No worries about the mechanical side of the pilot, just the electronic stuff.

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