Anyone know whats happened to Force12?

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I ordered the 4o3a 8x1 antenna switch from Force12 in a sale newsletter I got sent in the new year.  Week later i get an invoice requesting us$70 more shipping as the shipping quote was only for Usa.  I paid, but have since heard or received nothing.  Their website seems to be not working, they dont respond to any emails or phone calls and I see 4o3a has changed distributors to Vibroplex.  Im hoping its still on the way and I havent been done over
Anyone know anything or heard anything? 
Wayne
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Wayne VK4ACN

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Posted 1 year ago

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Len Geraldi

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I believe Force 12 is no longer in business. I had to use the backing of my credit card company to get my almost $3,000 refunded. As you experienced they did not return or answer my emails and telephone calls.

 

Good luck I hope you used a credit card.

 

 

73, Len K6ANP

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William Hein

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Wayne - Did you sned the additional shipping fee? I have your AG 8x1 Plus ready to ship. Please reply to me at william.hein.co@gmail.com de BIll AA7XT
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Wayne VK4ACN

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Bill i did send the extra shipping via paypal. I will email you
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William Hein

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Yes, Vibroplex is taking over 4O3A Signature distribution in North America and I am confident they will do a great job. de Bill AA7XT
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William Hein

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Thanks, Wayne. Sorry I missed this. de Bill AA7XT
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YV5WZ

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I did not get it....Force 12 is out of business? So XR6 is not production anymore? 
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Steven G1XOW

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XR6 is still available
http://www.innovantennas.com
just put XR6 in the search box.
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Steven G1XOW

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Wayne VK4ACN

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The date on that is Dec 2013
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Steven G1XOW

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Hi Wayne, I don't know any details but it would explain why the F12 site is no longer showing. Assume they have gone through some transitional period so I don't suppose the new owner would want to be competing with the previous owned businesses website.
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Force12 delivered two 4o3a 8x2N switches while I was traveling.

But I do see at the Vibroplex website:

4O3A Signature Products

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

KNOXVILLE, TN., USA January 23, 2017 - Vibroplex LLC, Knoxville, TN, USA and SKY SAT d.o.o. of Igalo, Montenegro are pleased to announce an exclusive agreement for Vibroplex to distribute the 4O3A Signature product line in the United States and Canada.

The 4O3A Signature line consists of TCP/IP and LAN enabled radio accessory equipment including advanced rotator control devices, radio interface devices for serious radio contest operation, remote and locally controlled antenna switches, station controllers, antenna controllers, combiners, triplexers, 4.5 kW HF bandpass filters and more. Many new products are slated for 2017 release.

Sky Sat CEO Ranko Boca, 4O3A stated "I know Scott Robbins from our long mutual passion for radio contesting have developed great respect for the business acumen he's demonstrated growing the Vibroplex business. 2017 will be a great year for the 4O3A Signature line and I'm thrilled with our new American representation."

Vibroplex expects to have the entire 4O3A Signature line available from stock for shipment in early February. Product warranties for equipment previously sold in North America through other channels will be transferred to Vibroplex and honored in full.

About Vibroplex LLC:

Vibroplex is the oldest continuously operating business in Amateur Radio, in their 112th year. Vibroplex manufactures Morse Code keys under the Vibroplex and Bencher brands, and are the owners of International Radio ("INRAD"), manufacturer of aftermarket crystal filters and roofing filters and who presently is the supplier of OEM filters for Elecraft, and W7FG Vintage Manuals. In addition, they currently distribute products for German radio companies Spiderbeam GmbH and Easy-Rotor-Control and Chinese manufacturer YouKits on an exclusive basis in the United States.

Contact:

VIBROPLEX LLC

Scott E. Robbins

1001 N Broadway St

Knoxville, TN 37917 USA

(865) 309-5073

www.vibroplex.com
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Wayne VK4ACN

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Steve
Just curious as to how long from you placing order to you receiving it
Wayne
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Two weeks, though over a week was weather delays (shipping exception).
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William Hein

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FYI to all: Scott W4PA @ Vibroplex will be holding inventory on all 4O3A Signature products at the Knoxville Vibroplex warehouse. Ranko 4O3A and I are very happy with Scott's commitment and his company's capability and expect improved service for North American customers. de Bill AA7XT
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Would be very interested in what your forward plans are Bill? Other changes?

Thank you and 73,

Steve K9ZW
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Paul N6PSE

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Bill, I ordered the 160 meter vertical in June for $1499. How can I get it? Thanks, Paul N6PSE
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Burch - K4QXX

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I just ordered a Force12 C3 HF antenna a few weeks ago.  It looks like I ordered just in time.  I have the antenna but I hope all the parts are included since it looks like Force12 is no more.
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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According to various sources, there was some financial difficulty with the new owners of the company. There are also rumors that the old owner is buying it back, but this is unconfirmed. If I get anything more definite I'll let you all know, but so far this is what I've been told.

Either way as others have mentioned, Ranko is now dealing with Vibroplex so this is your source for the genius product line. 
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Thought Force12 is working with 4o3a on other levels?

http://www.4o3a.com/index.php/company/contact/  suggests that the USA Representative for 4o3a and Sky Sat Doo is now Sky Sat LLC that is aka the parent of Force12.

Realignment or more?

Hmmm...


73

Steve K9ZW 

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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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No. The USA rep is now vibroplex.
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Maybe, but the announcement says distributor and the Sky Sat LLC is newly on Bill AA7XT's LinkedIn profile as the GM of the N/A Arm of Sky Sat Doo, as of January 2017 - https://www.linkedin.com/in/williamhein/ 

The Vibroplex announcement says "Vibroplex LLC, Knoxville, TN, USA and SKY SAT d.o.o. of Igalo, Montenegro are pleased to announce an exclusive agreement for Vibroplex to distribute the 4O3A Signature product line in the United States and Canada. "

Sky Sat Doo has more product lines than just amateur radio, and arguably non-Signature (aka Flex-Ready) amateur product lines as well (though that could be just evolving branding and not a differentiation). (Some examples of Ham gear NOT carrying the Signature branding are at http://www.4o3a.com/index.php/products/ham-radio-gear-2/ )

I think they held back the tower business as a Sky Sat Doo/LLC product as well.  BTW the Sky Sat website itself appears to be down, but some artifacts linger at the Wayback Machine/Archive.org

The Towers are at:

http://www.4o3a.com/index.php/products/rotary-towers/ and

http://www.4o3a.com/wp-content/uploads/antenna_towers.pdf

Remember that Sky Sat Doo is sometimes described as a subsidiary/part of "International RS Group" and some of the staff also list parallel additional jobs at places like Cloud Montenegro or Golden State Business - so one really doesn't have a clear idea how many tiers of companies are used or how they all fit.

In the midst of so many bits of information it would be useful if they would speak to the questions. 

Wonder if there was any forward statement at Hamcation?

Regardless I wish the all well and every success, and Vibroplex team every success as well!

73

Steve K9ZW

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Ranko

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Ho Steve,

Vibroplex took over all 4O3A Signature sales in USA and Canada. I am sure that Scott will provide excellent service.

Let me give you basic info about Sky Sat.

Sky Sat group has 3 companies:
-Sky Sat Montenegro - HQ with R&D and production
-Sky Sat America - Sales and marketing
-Sky Sat Labs - R&D laboratories

Bill moved to California for personal reasons, and he is representing Sky Sat group.

Sky Sat works since 1991 and we were in broadcasting business for 25 years, producing Low and High power OEM TV/radio transmitters. We still have some BC production but in lower volume.

73
Ranko
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Thank you Ranko

Transitions often get too much attention - often even more attention than the important part of what the future holds!

Wishing everyone involved every success!

73

Steve
K9ZW
(Edited)
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William Hein

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Paul - I have your 160m in my truck. Will call you. de Bill AA7XT