Blog posts for May 2015

Is AC the future for Golf Carts

Yamaha Drive AC

This year Yamaha introduced their new Drive AC which runs off of alternating current.  Now this isn’t a new idea since EZGO released the RXV back in 2008.  Both EZGO & Yamaha have both indicated the many advantages of the alternating current motors such better efficiency, greater power and higher dependability but if that is the case what took Yamaha 7 years to release their own version?  When will we see a Club Car Precedent AC?  Is it because the technology is just too expensive to develop?  I think only time will tell. 

Yamaha for many years has been perceived as providing primarily gas golf carts and this new AC motor system on their Drive is a good way to make consumers aware that they are indeed one of the top manufacturers of carts in the industry.  Since EZGO has already released an AC Drive cart years earlier it should be nice to see what the main difference in the two carts actually is as soon as more dealers get them in their shops to service them.

Alternating current is really a great option when it comes to electric motors.  We are carrying the Silver Wolf 4wd system which runs on AC motors and it really does show the power and durability of the motors.  Now, the 4wd system does only run at low speed to provide the additional pulling power that many off-road enthusiasts would require which is a nice feature to have since you wouldn’t need all the wheels turning at high speeds.

As for the Club Car AC drive it would be nice to see if Club Car is currently working on any AC systems but since their IQ system is a solid system and many dealers prefer servicing them I don’t know how well it would be received if it was introduced.

If you are a Yamaha dealer and have had the opportunity to service and see the new Drive AC in the field we would love to know your thoughts so please leave a comment below.


Steve WilmerWritten by Steve Wilmer

Steve started with Stenten’s in October of 2011 and currently maintains Stenten’s digital footprint.  This includes contributing to our Blog, monitoring our technical Forum, and posting to our various social media outlets including Facebook, Twitter, & Pinterest.  Along with increasing Stenten’s digital market Steve also has knowledge on many performance parts for golf carts including controllers, motors, and tire & wheel combinations.


Check out this classic Par for the Course from 1996!

Here's a little nostalgia for you:


Steve WilmerWritten by Steve Wilmer

Steve started with Stenten’s in October of 2011 and currently maintains Stenten’s digital footprint.  This includes contributing to our Blog, monitoring our technical Forum, and posting to our various social media outlets including Facebook, Twitter, & Pinterest.  Along with increasing Stenten’s digital market Steve also has knowledge on many performance parts for golf carts including controllers, motors, and tire & wheel combinations.


8 Ways to lock your golf cart

8 WAYS TO LOCK YOUR GOLF CART

An article derived from the book “So you bought a golf cart?”

 

A lot of people might think that it is hard to lock a golf cart and well, it can be.  I mean golf carts are wide open and very susceptible to vandalism and theft, but there are a few things you can do to prevent such things happening to your cart.  First and foremost you’ll want to change the ignition switch to a unique key switch. This is the most common (and cheapest) way to lock your cart.  If you don’t change your ignition switch, any other individual with the same model cart and access to a set of keys can just jump in, start your cart, and be off in seconds.

Other ways to lock your cart may be to install a key pad lock, these electronic pads wire into the electrical system and are effective in disabling the cart when parked.  Without the proper key code sequence the cart will not be able to move even with the normal key in place.

You can also install a manual disconnect switch.  This switch can handle high currents and typically disconnects your main power flow from the battery bank.  They are usually installed in hard to find places and even come available with the capability to install a padlock as well.

One no brainer way to lock your golf cart would be to install a security system like an alarm that works remotely to disable your cart with a key fob. These security systems wire into your control circuit of the ignition system. And without the key fob would disable the golf cart to where it would not be able to move even with a key in hand.

A few more ways to lock your cart are to install a wheel lock boot or pedal lock. The draw back here with a wheel lock boot is that it can be cumbersome for traveling with, and better suited for locking your cart in storage or at home, however it will definitely stop your cart from rolling off with a new owner!  A pedal lock might be a better way to lock your cart while out and about and there are several available on the market, these pedal locks lock the accelerator pedal in the up position and it goes without saying if you can’t press the accelerator the cart won’t go!

The last few things you can do to lock your cart would be to either install a steering wheel removal system, or use a steering wheel club.  The steering wheel club, just like in the automotive market is used to lock your steering wheel into an un-drivable position making it hard to drive off of course without steering.  If you have a Grant steering wheel, such as the ones sold here at Stenten’s, they make a security system that allows you to remove your steering wheel and take it with you.  Again it’s pretty difficult to drive a golf cart without a steering wheel.

Well there you have it a few easy tips for how to lock your golf cart.  This article was derived from a very useful book called “So You Bought A Golf Cart?” An owners guide for learning about golf carts. Written by Micheal K. Rosenbarker the founder and operator of Best Buy Golf Cart Rentals and Accutrue enterprises LLC. 

This book is full of useful ideas and answers to the many simple questions one might encounter when buying a new golf cart.  Even for those long time owners and users of golf carts, this book is a well written good read.  Full of pictures and diagrams, offering safety tips for operating your golf cart along with maintenance instructions and help for deciding which accessories to order for your cart.  So check it out today at Bestbuygolfcartrentals.com.  And as always we appreciate and look forward to your feedback!

 



Social Ecommerce and Your Business

Social MediaSocial media is a growing business.  Facebook alone has 1.19 billion monthly users.  That is an incredible amount of people using just one form of social media and over 874 million users use their mobile phones to access their accounts.  With so a large audience doesn’t it seem like a simple choice to extend your brand into the social media sites?  Now social media is more than just Facebook it also includes Twitter, blogs, forums, YouTube, podcasts, etc.  These outlets are perfect for small and large businesses alike because it allows you to connect and communicate very quickly and easily with your customers.

You can use all forms of social media to not only sell to your customers but also to connect to them.  Find out what products they love and also what products they hate.  People are more likely to tell you about bad experiences or products on social media than in person or over the phone.  The most important thing you can do as a small business is answer problems or concerns properly.  If someone doesn’t like a product don’t ignore the problem answer it directly and quickly even if the answer is “We will look into it”.  I know it sounds like your brushing them off and in fact you are just for a time while you actually look into it as long as you reply in a reasonable time with a well put together solution your customer and future customers will respect you and trust you.

One of the easiest things to accomplish with social media is visibility.  With determination you can quickly build a following and with frequent, regular posts you can build brand recognition and loyalty.  This all depends on the quality of the content that you share and distribute.  If your company is doing good things and you share this your followers will be more likely to share this with their friends and networks.  The main key is to use social media on a consistent basis, this way you are always adding fresh content to your sites and this will attract more visitors to your website.

Social media is not only for your personal lives anymore with the amount of users that use it on a daily basis with a little planning and ingenuity you can use it as a great resource for your business.  Don’t limit yourself to just Facebook & Twitter don’t forget if you create an online blog or forum this will help direct traffic to your site where your products are and increase your chances of turning visitors into customers.


Steve WilmerWritten by Steve Wilmer

Steve started with Stenten’s in October of 2011 and currently maintains Stenten’s digital footprint.  This includes contributing to our Blog, monitoring our technical Forum, and posting to our various social media outlets including Facebook, Twitter, & Pinterest.  Along with increasing Stenten’s digital market Steve also has knowledge on many performance parts for golf carts including controllers, motors, and tire & wheel combinations.


5 Tools Everyone in the Golf Cart Industry Should Be Using

With every job you do you will always find that it is easier and faster to accomplish if you use the correct tools.  If a tool can save you time it can save you money and everyone like to save money right.  I would like to highlight a few tools that I have found not only increase our speed and performance but also our dealers as well.  Now when I say tools I don’t specifically mean a hammer or a wrench (I will include a few of those) but I also mean software tools as well.  These tools not only help you with the golf carts but also help you with your business.

1.  Custom Battery Cables

Cutters, Stripper, & Crimpers

Now if you often replace battery cables on the golf carts and find you also do custom builds you may find it necessary to cut and crimp your own custom cable lengths.  Many dealers just use a standard utility knife to cut back the sheath and use a hammer punch to crimp the ends and this does work it is just not the best way.  We have a great line of industrial cutters and strippers that can give you a clean cut with little effort and can strip back the casing fast and you won’t risk cutting yourself in the process.  As for crimping the ends on we offer a very handy hand crimper that will allow you to actually crimp the ends on in the field and this would eliminate the need to walk back and forth to your work bench to finish the job.

Wire Cutters Stripper Crimper

2.  Determine Battery Capacity & Find defective Batteries in a Set

Battery Discharger

If you are buying and selling carts it is a good idea to make sure that the batteries that are in the carts you buy are actually good.  Everyone will tell you they have new batteries even if they were in fact replaced a few years ago.  Using a discharger on the battery set will allow you to measure the battery capacity expressed as the percentage of time at which shut-off voltage was reached.  This can be seen from the example found in the operating instructions for our Lester Battery Discharger:

Example: An 18 cell battery set rated at 107 minutes @ 75 amp discharge rate is to be tested to a shut-off voltage of 31.5 volts. Upon discharging a set of fully charged batteries, the discharge     unit shut off in one hour and 32 minutes (92 minutes). Battery capacity is therefore expressed as:  (92/107) * 100% = 86.0%.

Discharger

3.  Good Cordless Impact Wrench & Drill

Makita LCT209W 12V Combo

The Makita 12v combo kit is what we use for our installations but keep in mind we do not do as many installs as a dealer would do but these units are small, lightweight and have a lot of power behind them.  Makita also offers an 18v model which may be better suited for constant use.  Whichever model you chose it is worth the investment because it can greatly increase the speed when installing rear seats, lift kits, clays baskets, etc.  It will also allow you to do these repairs and upgrades on the road for mobile installations.

Tool Combo

4.  Credit Card Processing

Square, Paypal Here, Intuit Go Payment

I went into depth on mobile credit card processing systems in the post: Processing Credit Cards on the Go.  So I won’t go into too much detail here but to say if you don’t have a way to easily accept all forms of payments your customers may begin to dwindle.  These days you can now get mobile notifications on your wrists so the technology is there you just need to determine which is right for you and your customers to both benefit from.

Credit Card Processor

5.  Automation!

This is one of my favorite things.

Automation

If it is a computer task that you do repetitively most likely there is a computer that can do automatically.  How awesome is that!  I just get so excited about this subject because with little effort you can set and schedule routines and have daily, weekly, and monthly operations handled for you.  For instance you can setup an automated email welcome series that will send new customers an email immediately after signing up and then you can set how often and how many additional emails are sent.  Also if you update several different social media sites but you want to make sure they all have the same information posted to it you can use a service such as www.IFTTT.com which stands for If This Than That.  So if you like a photo on Pinterest it can then post that photo to facebook, twitter, and even download that photo to a Dropbox folder.  You could also use a site like www.buffer.com to schedule posts to facebook or twitter to post at random intervals.  So if you spend 10-20 minutes you can schedule a few weeks’ worth of social media updates.

Here are some automation websites to look into:

www.MailChimp.com – Newsletters
www.IFTTT.com – Social Media & Alerts
www.buffer.com – Social Media
www.hootsuite.com – Social Media

Most of these sites offer extensions to Google Chrome & Firefox to allow fast and easy scheduling as well.

I hope that these few tips help you and I’m sure we didn’t include some of the essential tools you use on a daily basis so please leave us a comment with what tools you couldn’t live without so we know what works for you.


Steve WilmerWritten by Steve Wilmer

Steve started with Stenten’s in October of 2011 and currently maintains Stenten’s digital footprint.  This includes contributing to our Blog, monitoring our technical Forum, and posting to our various social media outlets including Facebook, Twitter, & Pinterest.  Along with increasing Stenten’s digital market Steve also has knowledge on many performance parts for golf carts including controllers, motors, and tire & wheel combinations.