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  1. #1
    Bronze Member tile's Avatar
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    May 2006
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    86
    Location
    Florida

    Default Gate opener

    Hi guy's

    I am going to buy a gate opener was looking at the Mighty Mule 350 Single Gate with a Solar Panel Kit.

    This will be my 1st opener and would like to buy one that will last for a years to come.

    I see I will need a marine battery for it to work off of. And would like to know would I get at lest 10 to 15 open/close with a good marine battery.

    Also my gate is a 16' Wire Filled Gate I got at Tsc.

    Thanks Ron.

  2. #2
    Platinum Member cowboy357's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    776
    Location
    SC Kansas

    Default Re: Gate opener

    Howdy Ron , I,ve been looking into doing the same thing . I Cant answer Your Question From Experience , but from What I have heard from Others , If You have a Really good Marine Battery You should not have to worry about it Keeping up with Many Multiple Opening & Closings .

    If Possible Could You Share the Info & Possibly pics as to What You Decide on & Install , Thanks .

    Bob

  3. #3
    Epic Contributor jinman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Posts
    20,950
    Location
    Texas - Wise County - Sunset
    Tractor
    NHTC45D, NH LB75B, Ford Jubilee

    Default Re: Gate opener

    Ron, my wife has an older GTO Pro gate opener that is very much like the Mighty Mules. The new MMs are different, but I don't know how much. Anyway, I'd like to give you some observations of Kathy's gate opener that I rebuilt once for her before we were married.

    1. She has a solar panel and a small SLA 7.4 ah battery that does fine. It fits right into the control box. She bought one new battery in the 10 years she's owned the opener. I think the price was $24 when ordered online. The one at TSC was something like $65 for the same battery we ordered online. We do have to dust the solar panel about once a quarter to make sure it works efficiently.

    2. The gate opener is going to come with hardware for a rigid mounting hardware (no shock mounting). I suggest you do some "southern engineering" and create a shock mount that will keep the full load from being instantaneously transmitted to the opener when it starts up. With a heavy gate, that shock is significant. I'm attaching pictures of how the opener self-destructed about 4 years ago and how I built a spring-loaded damper to reduce the shock load. The repaired opener has worked perfectly for over 4 years with no signs of cracking or shock destruction.

    The first picture is of the gate. The 2nd is the broken opener. The 3rd-5th are the internal parts and some of the shock damage. The rest of the pictures are the details of the damper I put on the gate end of the opener. I first use grade 2 bolts and they just bent easily. I redid the damper using grade 8 and they have stood up fine to the stress.

    Good luck with your gate opener, Ron. They can be frustrating, but they sure are convenient to have.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Jim


  4. #4
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Posts
    1,280
    Location
    Tombstone Az
    Tractor
    BX 22

    Default Re: Gate opener

    I have a mighty mule 500 and an Apollo 3500 there is no comparison the Apollo is a far better unit. The mighty mule is currently inop because it has plastic (nylon) device on the gear drive that strips from either being pushed or the wind blowing on it. If you get the mule be sure to get the thing that locks the gate closed or it will not last long. A good battery will open more times per day than you will need. Both of mine have the small gell cells that fit inside of the controll box. The box will hold two of those if you need them.

    I do not have any experience with the GTO pro series they do look better than the mighty mules.

    http://www.segogto.com/apollo.html

  5. #5
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    222
    Location
    Brazoria County, TX
    Tractor
    Jimna 254

    Default Re: Gate opener

    I have the same one Jinman does. I have also doen the modification. I have a deep cycle battery on it and the only time I run out of power is when I have no sun for 6 weeks. I then just charge it up . I also have the in ground pickup so I do not have to push the button to open the gate. the greatest improvement I made. I have the keypad on the gate post too. It was installed when my dad had cancer so the church could come out and visit when they wanted. If my gate opener broke today, I would have a new one within a month.

    Oh yeah, mine has been in use for about 8-9 years. It is currenlty disconnected becays I have no fence due to the hurricaine. It will be used again as soon as my fence is back up.

    Ron

  6. #6
    Elite Member wushaw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    3,075
    Location
    Bristol Texas
    Tractor
    Kubota L2800, 15 hp 372 Mitsubishi

    Default Re: Gate opener

    I also have the same as Jinman does, I have two 10' Prefert gates that are pretty light, I have a standard 12v battery in a box below it to power it that is charged with two solar panels. Everything including the battery is six yrs old and still working.

    Someday I will change to a different gate system.
    Kubota L2800HST, Mitsubishi 372, bh75, 45" Agric tiller, 5' home made disk, 42" Bush hog, PHD, 66" Cammond BB.

  7. #7
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    132
    Location
    Florida
    Tractor
    4120

    Default Re: Gate opener

    I have Mighty Mule that I purchased from TSC years ago with the solar cell. Worked great, untill the oak tree grew enough to shade the solar cell. I trimmed the limb and it started working again.

    Until the aluminum housing broke during one of our hurricanes due to the wind loads. I would also suggest some kind of shock absorber and or an electric lock that removes the stress from the opener when closed. Funny thing is I purchased one (also made by Mighty Mule) but never got arround to installing it.

  8. #8
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,230
    Location
    N. E. Florida

    Default Re: Gate opener

    I have a Harbor Freight double gate opener that I have had for four years. It has a lot features, two remotes, key panel, light circuit, side entry gate lock, one can open in the other out. And the good part, it's made in Italy where they have villas.
    I have two 12' gates. The instructions say only 8' max but that is for solid gates not open panel.
    The only problem I have had was not the openers fault. The remotes were acting up and erratic. I complained to my neighbor and he told me because the superbowl was in Jacksonville the feds were jamming some signals. No wonder I can't stand football!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Gate opener-000_0571.jpg   Gate opener-000_0570.jpg  

  9. #9
    Veteran Member weldingisfun's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    1,514
    Location
    West Bell County, Texas
    Tractor
    Mahindra 4500 4WD w/FEL, and Scotts S2048 lawn tractor

    Default Re: Gate opener

    We have two Mighty Mules openers, a 350 and a 500, one is solar and one AC. They have worked just fine for the past four years. I am sure there are better quality openers than the MM, and they cost a whole lot more too.

  10. #10
    Bronze Member tile's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    86
    Location
    Florida

    Default Re: Gate opener

    Thanks for all the info guys.

    Been looking at the Mighty Mule FM500 is says it has Soft Start/Soft Stop.
    (so I wont have to make a damper I hope)

    Hope to be going out fri to pick it up maybe install it on sat.

    Ill post pic's when I am done.


    Ron.

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