What is going on with Miller Electric???

I just bought a Syncrowave 250DX Tig Runner Package with a Pulser and
a Sequencer as options for $3699. When I ordered the machine from my
supplier I made sure that the options would be installed at the
factory since it was a direct ship from Miller. I called the other day
when the machine didn't arrive and the salesman told me that they had
run into a problem. He told me Miller did not install these options
anymore and that they would be sent to me as field installs. They told
me that they would install the options at no cost however the machine
would have to be shipped to them in CA. I need the machine and don't
have time to wait weeks for the machine to get upgraded.
So just to confirm what was going on I called Miller and spoke to a
lady who told me that they do not install these options anymore at the
factory and they are shipped as field upgrades only. I would have to
take the machine to a Factory Authorized Repair Agent or risk voiding
the warranty to get the options installed. This puzzled me as to why
they would not install these at the factory. None the less I am going
to have to get them installed at a cost of $55/hr and it will
apparently take anywhere from 1.5-2.5 hours to put them in. Anyone
have any experience with these upgrades and how complex they are to
install? Thanks, Steve
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I remember when I got mine 250DX a year ago that the welding supplier I got it from, Central Welding, had to install them for me.
It wasn't a big deal. Maybe took an hour for both upgrades.
It is kind of puzzling why they aren't sold presinstalled. I'll ask my buddies in the repair trade about it and post their responses.
Reply to
Ernie Leimkuhler
Had the same thing happen with our Lincoln 275 Precision TIG machine but it only took a couple of minutes for my local dealer to install the attachments. But I did notice the warrantee on the installed attachments was months not 3 years like the machines warantee. When I brought that to the attention of my local dealer they wrote on my invoice that all the attachments where order on the original purchase order and should have come factory installed in which case the full 3 year warantee would have applied to those attachments.
Even if Lincoln could technically refused warrantee coverage I can go after the dealer for N/C repairs.
Never hurts to read the fine print
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I talked to one of my repair buddies. He says Miller isn't pre-installing those options because they don't want to have to keep track of custom machines as they pass through the factory.
If most people were ordering the machines with the options, they might change that, but the majority of the machines are sold as basic models.
It is simpler, and cheaper, for them to just ship the field install kits to the dealers for the few machines that need them.
He also said they are a breeze to install. Knockout a few plugs on the face of the machine and attach a few spade connectors inside.
Reply to
Ernie Leimkuhler
I'm wondering if some of the new high tech attachments are more prone to break down than the basic welders so they sell the stuff to be installed after delivery with a much shorter warantee and less cost to the manufacture?
Just a thought
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Hi Steve,
It is very easy to install the upgrades, as Ernie pointed out. When I got the upgrade for the pulser from my local dealer, I asked if it was easy to install, and if I could do it myself. The dealer gave me the o.k.. BTW, the machine is a Syncrowave 250DX as well.
After removing the cover via a bunch of stove bolts, the guts are all there. There is one major board into which the daughter board connect via some ribbon cable. The boards have everything already in place. You install the boards at the back with a couple of screws, add the buttons on the front panel, and that's it. The parts fit well, there's no fiddling.
Your dealer should do the job for free, it can't take more that 1/2 hour with a coffee break.
Reply to
Guy Morin
yeah, typical "factory" crud.
same reason why lots of vehicle options are "dealer installed". just to quote an example, Toyota factories use JIT (just in time) assembly lines, very efficient, easy to track, cost effective.
however, it the selling ad said "factory installed accessories" i would expect it to be installed at the factory. it just proves there's a disconnect somewhere within Miller.
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My freind says that if you have to install it yourself you should get the dealer to authorize your installation so it is fully covered.
He has done loads of those field install kits for local dealers. They just routinely send in the machines for the upgrades.
In Seattle most of the welding suppliers have given up doing any of their own repairs. All the repairs are subcontracted to 2 shops, Precision Weld Repair and American Equipment Repair. I have a friend at both shops.
Reply to
Ernie Leimkuhler
I agree with the installations being easy to do but in most cases the guarantee on those attachments isn't the same as it would be if the machine came from the factory with those options installed. That in my opinion is a real concern and something that has to be considered.
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Hi Jimbo,
You raise some important issues regarding manufacturer and customer interaction.
If the hookups required you to pull out the soldering iron, then I would agree. Given the fact that there is ample room in the machine for access, and that the components use connectors that negate the chance for an error, I am not so categoric.
The cost of the options is a cash cow for the shops.
Careful inspection reveals that the capabilities are all built into the motherboard. The added board are just receptacles for the various switches, there are no chips, no programming, nothing sophisticated.
Options only make money for one link of the food chain: the dealers.
The manufacturer sees more trouble in distinguishing features, and assembly. For them, it is actually better to put everything in, and not have to touch it again. Which is why the inverters usually come with everything built-in. Going in to small spaces is a recipe for disaster. The cavernous interior of the transformer machines lends itself well to servicing.
The dealer is the one with the sweet deal. They charge big bucks for a couple of knobs and buttons, and charge installation on top of that. Which is why, any added shop charge is a rip-off, IMHO.
The end user puts up with the added cost, and the hassle if he has to bring the machine in for the modifications. The 250DX is not exactly a picnic to cart around just for fun.
Reply to
Guy Morin
For anyone who's interested I pulled out my Lincoln 275 Precission TIG warantee and it said the machine was covered for 3 years after purchase. Most field installed options are covered by a 1 year warantee.
In my opinion field installation of optional factory authorized components that where part of the initial purchase order and installed by an authorized dealer should carry the same warantee as a machine shipped with those items already installed at the factory. If the options where ordered after the welder was delivered to the customer then I agree that the one year warantee is probably fair.
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