As the Gates Corporation’s main training facility in the U.S., the Gates Rubber factory, located in Siloam Springs, Ark., uses plant tours not only to introduce vendors and visitors to Gates’ “well-oiled” operations, but also to conduct employee training.
In a noble attempt to enable all guests to hear over the industrial machinery, tour guides and trainers toted around a microphone and small loudspeaker, requiring the use of both hands. This somewhat cumbersome solution worked well for those in the immediate vicinity of the guide, however it still was unable to reach all of the listeners adequately.
Gates’ HSE Coordinator Bill Medley knows the value of ensuring good sound especially on the shop floor to not only ensure visitor safety, but also when teaching employees about safety. Medley was tasked with finding a more effective audio solution, and his search led him to Listen Technologies’ LS-08 15-Person Advanced Portable FM System.
The wireless LS-08 consists of 16 body packs: 1 transmitter and 15 receivers. All body packs come with the needed accessories (microphone, earphones, batteries, etc.) and fit into a convenient charging/carrying case. You can also add more receivers to the system if 15 isn’t enough, or if your needs grow in the future. The system features 57 frequencies to ensure users can always find a clear signal. The inpidual receivers have a channel up/down and seek button, as well as access to the batteries, which are concealed behind a small lockable door, to prevent accidental adjustment, but which also allow easy access to the user.
Bill Medley, HSE Coordinator for the Gates factory noted, “The Listen system allows us to conduct trainings and factory tours in a noisy environment where everyone can clearly hear the speaker or trainer.” Since the Siloam Springs factory is one of the main training facilities, they frequently host guests from other Gates facilities as well as vendors. The visitors were so impressed with the clarity and ease-of-use of the Listen system that many of them have purchased systems for their own facilities.
Gates Corporation, which started out as a family business known as the Gates Rubber Company, has been inventing and manufacturing various mechanical and rubber-based products for close to 100 years. In fact, they actually invented the V-shaped drive belt commonly found in automotive engines. In addition to a booming aftermarket business for serpentine belts, tensioner pulleys and other items related to the automotive industry, they are also an OEM supplier for several major automotive manufacturers, so they have several production facilities all across North America and other parts of the world.
“We’ve been very happy with the Listen system,” says Bill Medley. “It’s been trouble-free and when ever we’ve had any questions about the system, the Listen people have always been very responsive and friendly.”