Milton's Blog

Thursday, May 23, 2016

Truck scale notification bell and chime kits - Agriculture Scales / Yard Scales

Truck Scale

Do you need to be notified each time a truck drives up to your scale? We have systems that can produce a soft chime or a clear bell ringing each time a truck drives up. Our hose systems are rugged and dependable. They transmit a signal each time the hose is compressed and activate the bell or chime. We offer a couple of monitoring options, the first is the Milton and Original bell kits; the second is a wireless chime kit. All of the kits including the wireless kits use a driveway hose to activate the bell. The hose crosses the driveway that you want monitored and connects directly to the bell or, in the case of the wireless kit, to a transmitter box. The difference between the Milton and Original bell kits and the wireless system is that the hose is not needed to run all the way to the receiver/chime. This can be an advantage for longer distances. The wireless kit is rated up to 600' however this distance can be reduced with thick vegetation, trees, and buildings between the transmitter and receiver. The wireless kits activate an electronic chime that is capable of playing four different sounds. This chime is also able to ring a low-voltage bell for situations that require something louder than the chime alone. When a bell is used in conjunction with the electronic chime both the chime and bell ring. The low-voltage bell has to be wired to the chime using low-voltage wiring. This low-voltage wiring is not included with the kit and needs to be purchased separately. The standard Milton bell kits can be used with up to 300' of driveway hose and the Original Bell can be used with up to 150' driveway hose. All three systems will help alert you to vehicles arriving and leaving your scale.



Friday, September 02, 2015

Bell rings when a rented vehicle is returned to the store.

U-Haul

Wouldn't it be nice if you were notified, with the ring of a bell, each time a rented vehicle was returned to your facility? Our driveway bell systems are dependable and simple to install. Set-up of the bell notification system is simple. The bells are sold as kits and include all of the items needed to set up a working system. Each kit includes either a bell or chime, driveway signal hose, and an end-of-hose anchor. Our wireless systems include a wireless transmitter but still use the dependable driveway signal hose to detect when a car or truck arrives. Truck rental companies such as U-Haul, Penske, Budget, Ryder and car rental companies such as Hertz, Budget, Alamo, Avis, and Thrifty find our bell systems rugged and simple to install. Please visit our site at www.miltonsbells.com for more information.



Wednesday, August 06, 2015

Hockey Players Bell

We have recently had a customer use one of our driveway bells in the most interesting way. They have created a hockey goal ringing bell. The hockey goal has been outfitted with two plumbers plungers one on each of the upper corners. A thin piece of rubber was stretched across the end of the plunger and a bulls-eye was painted on it. When the hockey puck strikes the bulls-eye on the end of the plunger the pressure change activates the bell to ring. According to the team's coach it has taken the boredom out of what had been a very repetitive practice. Here is a close-up photo of the plumbers plunger connected to the driveway tubing.


Below is a photo of both plungers that connect back to the driveway bell: "Ding-Ding"




Thursday, May 23, 2015

Oil Field Vehicle Monitoring Bell Kits

Do you work in the oil field and have the responsibility of monitoring vehicle traffic arriving and leaving the site? We have kits that will help notify you with a clear "Ding-Ding" or a soft chime. All of our kits come with a rugged driveway hose that can be used on the gravel roadways that commonly access oil field sites.


We offer a couple of monitoring options, our first are the Milton and Original bell kits; the second is a wireless chime kit. All of the kits including the wireless kits use a driveway hose to activate the bell. The hose crosses the driveway that you want monitored and connects directly to the bell or, in the case of the wireless kit, to a transmitter box. The difference between the Milton and Original bell kits and the wireless system is that the hose is not needed to run all the way to the receiver/chime. This can be an advantage for longer distances. The wireless kit is rated up to 600' however this distance can be reduced with thick vegetation, trees, and buildings between the transmitter and receiver. The wireless kits activate an electronic chime that is capable of playing four different sounds. This chime is also able to ring a low-voltage bell for situations that require something louder than the chime alone. When a bell is used in conjunction with the electronic chime both the chime and bell ring. The low-voltage bell has to be wired to the chime using low-voltage wiring. This low-voltage wiring is not included with the kit and needs to be purchased separately. The standard Milton bell kits can be used with up to 300' of driveway hose and the Original Bell can be used with up to 150' driveway hose. All three systems will help alert you to vehicles arriving and leaving your site.



Thursday, May 16, 2014

Golf Pro Shop Chime System - Golf Cart Return

The staff at golf pro shops are often responsible for monitoring when golf carts have been returned to the shop and need to be alerted when they arrive. Our chime kits are the perfect way to be quietly alerted that another golf cart has been returned and needs service. The most important issue to consider, when choosing a bell or chime for a pro shop, is that it is not too loud or disruptive to the inside of the shop. We recommend using either a Milton chime kit or our wireless chime kit. Our wireless chime kit can be set to ring with four different preset tones. There are instructions that are included with each wireless kit that allow you to change the ring tone. The second thing to consider is between a wireless chime kit and a Milton chime kit.

Wireless Chime Kit

Milton Chime Kit
Both systems use a driveway hose to detect vehicles. When a golf cart or any other vehicle drives across the hose it produces a change in pressure within the hose. This change in pressure triggers each of the chimes to ring. Our standard Milton chime uses a driveway hose that runs all the way from where it crosses the driveway to where it is connected to the chime. This means that if you need the chime to be inside of the store the hose will have to be run into the pro shop. The wireless systems use a short length of hose to detect vehicles but transmitts the signal received from the driveway hose to the chime wirelessly. This means that you do not need a driveway hose that runs all the way inside of the pro shop. The transmission range on our wireless systems are around 600'. This distance can be shorter if there are obstructions between the chime and transmitter such as hills or metal wall panels. "Ding-Ding".....Milton



Friday, October 23, 2013

Using buried PVC in place of driveway hose

I have had several customers ask about using buried PVC to connect their driveway bell to a short segment of hose at the end of their driveway. The reason for doing this, usually, is to conceal what would be a very long length of driveway hose that is being replaced by the buried PVC. Here are a few things to remember if you choose to install a buried PVC system: The inside diameter of the driveway hose is 3/8". You will need to transition from the PVC to the 3/8" ID hose using transition couplers. Any water or condensation that gets into the PVC will affect the performance of the bell and may pevent it from ringing. Be sure to glue all PVC connections with PVC cement and to use plumbers tape to connect any metal fittings. The reason for this is to keep the PVC as air-tight as possible and to keep moisture out. The Milton bell can operate on up to 300' of driveway hose and the Original bell can operate on up to 150' of driveway hose. The inside diameter of the standard driveway hose is 3/8" and the inside diameter of the smallest common PVC is 1/2". Be sure to test your system prior to burying it to make certain that the bell works with the length of 1/2" PVC and hose before you actually bury it. "Ding-Ding".....Milton



Monday, September 27, 2012

Milton service station bell rings when email arrives.

Recently, I have been trying to customize a Milton bell so that it will ring when an email arrives. Of course I do not want the bell to ring when every email arrives, just certain emails. I have it set up to ring when emails arrive from someone important to me or with certain words in the subject line. It has taken me some time to figure it out but here are the basic steps that I went through to set it up. I began with the "rules wizard" in Microsoft Outlook. The rules wizard allows you to monitor incoming emails and scan for emails that contain defined words in the subject line. I then had Outlook execute a simple .BAT file that changed the voltage between pins 4 and 5 on the DB-9 port or COM port. The voltage between pins 4 and 5 was not enough to ring the bell or to even close a low-voltage relay. I had to insert a simple transistor circuit to amplify the signal and ultimately activate the relay. After getting the electrical signal to the COM port and getting it to activate a relay the rest was straight forward. The last step was to connect the solenoid inside of the bell to the relay. The electrical signal that is sent to the COM port through the .BAT file is sent in two momentary pulses. This simulates a car driving across the driveway signal hose at a service station: “Ding-Ding”. It is a conversation starter. You have to be very selective on which emails you want to have the bell ring for. It is definitely a merger of the internet and petrolania. Please let me know if anyone is interested and I can share more of the specific details.

Ding-Ding".....Milton



Thursday, December 23, 2012

"Ding-Ding"

As a young kid I can remember riding my bicycle across the driveway hose at the gas station over and over listening to it ring "Ding-Ding" each time my bike rolled across the hose. To make it even more fun my friends were also riding their bikes across the hose. The bell was ringing like a machine gun. It was a lot of fun. It probably drove the gas station employees crazy. Then, the employees of the gas station would sit waiting for the next customer to arrive in chairs lined up in front of the station. They would fill cars with gas in addition to checking the oil, tire pressure, and cleaning the windshield. As far as we could tell they tolerated our fun and after a few times of riding our bikes across the hose we were on our way. On another occasion in New Orleans, I was walking through a neighborhood gas station with my grandfather, and he pointed out to me that my name was on the bell, "Milton". I found it interesting and thought that it would be neat to have one of those bells. The "Ding-Ding" of the gas station bell was carved into my memory. After several years I have rekindled my interested in these gas station bells. I began selling the bells and kits including everything necessary to set up a working bell system for both residential and commercial applications. Milton's Bells has taken the standard gas station bell into the 21st Century. We offer a modified gas station bell that operates off of a low-voltage signal. This bell has been used as a door bell in an industrial loft apartment, in auto-shows, and for very long driveways where a driveway hose would be impractical. We are also working on a modified bell that connects directly to you personal computer. The bell could be set to ring when an email is received. Of course there are email rules that would need to be set so that not every email would generate a "Ding-Ding".



Tuesday, August 12, 2011

Habitat for Humanity ReStore & Milton's Bells

Habitat for Humanity

Milton's Bells has recently donated two of our driveway bell kits to Habitat for Humanity International. The driveway alarm bells are used by Habitat for Humanity to let them know when a new donor has arrived. “We are always teaching our new managers that making their ReStores donor friendly is extremely is important. The drive-way bell is a great way to ensure that donors are received as soon as they arrive at the store with their donation.” Habitat's ReStore locations sell surplus building materials to the public at a fraction of the retail price. The proceeds are used to fund the construction of local Habitat home projects. If you are a Habitat ReStore manager and would like to discuss a bell system for your location please contact us at: 713-927-3914.



Monday, July 11, 2011

Home Security Driveway Alarm Kit - Extension of Home Security Alarm System

Home Security / Driveway Alarm Integration
Home Security Alarm

Our driveway bell and chime kits are a valuable extension to any home security system. The driveway alarms that we sell provide an early warning whenever a new visitor drives into your driveway. The new visitor will be announced each time with the clear ringing of a bell, "Ding-Ding", or chime depending on which of our kits is purchased and installed. Our bell and chime kits are simple to set up and provide a feeling of security. We also have momentary contact switches that are activated when a vehicle drives across the black rubber driveway tubing. These momentary contact switches can be tied directly into a home security system to alert the security system that either a vehicle has entered the driveway or that a vehicle within the garage has been moved or may be in the process of being stolen. The hose can be placed anywhere you want to monitor the movement of a vehicle traffic. It is definitely an integral part of any home security system.
Home Security Driveway Alarm Kit
Home Security Driveway Alarm Kit

The momentary contact switch can be wired into your home security system. It also includes 20' of driveway tubing a one pound steel end-of-hose anchor. By placing the driveway alarm hose under the tire of a car that is parked in your garage it will act as a supplementary alarm letting you know if the vehicle has been moved. It will send a momentary contact closure, if it is wired into your home security system, each time the hose is compressed. It could be considered a separate security zone for your driveway.



Thursday, May 23, 2011

The driveway bell – Perfect for businesses with a lean operating budget!

As a result of the recent poor economic climate, many businesses have had to make cutbacks in the form of staff reductions, in order to save money. This means that there are many businesses out there that now have to operate with less people, meaning there are fewer eyes available to look out for customers and help them with their queries. If you feel like your business is struggling on a lean operating budget, you may want to consider installing one of our driveway bells. This bell will alert staff on shift, ensuring they are ready to greet the customer and provide them with an excellent service. With the help of our driveway bell, your business will be able to operate with fewer employees, as those employees will be aware when customers arrive and leave your business. Even if they are busy carrying out other tasks, the bell will sound, notifying them that they need to stop what they are doing and deal with the customer. Take a look at some of the businesses we believe could benefit from installing our driveway bells below.

Monitor vehicle arrival and departure with Milton's Bells

Install a driveway bell on the premises of your car rental company, so you know when customers are picking up and dropping off the vehicles. Image source: http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3509/3783852919_409cde71ee.jpg Rental companies If you own a vehicle rental company, it is likely that you will have customers picking up vehicles and dropping them off throughout the day. Whilst you may not need many staff on the premises, it is important that the employees that are on shift are monitoring the clients picking up and returning your vehicles. Installing a driveway bell will keep staff notified of the rental equipment that is being driven off the premises and returned. The bell will signal, so they can make a record of the incoming and outgoing vehicles, and to ensure that their records are up to date. Drive-through businesses Drive-through staff are usually very busy, especially if they have to serve customers over the counter, as well as at the drive-through windows. A fantastic way to ensure your drive-through staff are meeting the needs and requirements of customers is to install a driveway bell. The bell will sound when a car pulls onto the drive-through, so that the employees are aware that there are new customers requiring service. The more alert staff are, the quicker they can communicate with the customers, providing excellent customer service. Quick responses also enable a business to benefit from increased productivity, allowing them to make a higher profit in a single day.
Place driveway order with driveway bell

Make sure your drive-through staff are ready to serve customers by installing a driveway bell. Image source: http://farm1.staticflickr.com/16/20145803_b2e1b34839.jpg Donation facilities We believe that our driveway bells could also benefit those running donation facilities. By installing a driveway bell, staff will be notified when a vehicle arrives, so they can head out and give the customer a hand with unloading the clothes they want to donate. The more attentive and helpful staff can be, the more likely people are to return with more clothes to donate in the future. Our driveway bells From looking at our website, you will see that we have driveway bells for all kinds of businesses. Whether you run a drive-through takeaway, a donation facility or a rental company, your business will greatly benefit from having a bell, as it will keep your staff alert, giving them the opportunity to provide a better service to customers and generate a greater return. Conclusion Although the poor economy and lean operating budgets have meant that many businesses have had to reduce the number of staff they employ, it does not mean that their business or customers have to suffer. With the help of our driveway bells, businesses can ensure that their staff are alerted when customers arrive, so they know they need to be ready to provide them with the best customer service possible.



Thursday, April 7, 2011

Single mother home security - Reassured by driveway chime.

Mother with Child - Driveway Security

We have recently received an email from a single mother who expressed her feeling of improved home security knowing that she could depend on her new driveway bell to alert her when a vehicle arrives in her driveway. She was comforted knowing that the bell would be rung announcing the arrival of a visitor before the doorbell was rang. She said that the chime gave her an advanced warning so that she could monitor new arrivals before they got to the door. We have also received comments from customers who have purchased bell kits for older parents who are living alone. They are comforted knowing that their parents will be notified with the clear ring of a bell or chime each time a new visitor arrives in their driveway. This early warning gives them a chance to prescreen the visitor through a window before the bell is actually rang. They have also commented that they appreciate the simplicity of the bell's setup. The bell and chime kits are an extension to any home security system.



Monday, August 23, 2010

Milton's Bells at Goodwill International Tradeshow

Goodwill Trade Show - Milton's Bells

We recently traveled to Atlanta to participate in the Goodwill Industry International Tradeshow. It was our first convention and we learned a lot about traveling with inventory, manning a booth, and we were very excited to be a part of the show and to participate in the events provided for the vendors. Goodwill is a very interesting organization, whose motto is, "A hand up, not a hand-out." At the end of the show we had donated some of our inventory to Goodwill for use in their stores.



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