Welcome to the The Garage Journal Board forums.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Go Back   The Garage Journal Board > The Garage > General Garage Discussion

Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 03-03-2012, 01:40 PM   #1
JasonSpangler
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 1
Default Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

Does anyone have experience comparing the Sommer Direct Drive Opener and the Liftmaster 3800 Residential Jackshaft Opener? Both units seem to have good reviews here and elsewhere.

http://www.directdriveopener.com/

http://www.liftmaster.com/consumerwe...px?modelId=834

I'm looking for the most quiet opener with reliability and durability.

I'm planning on pairing the units with nylon rollers and rubber vibration isolators to further quiet the noise.

Thanks!
JasonSpangler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-01-2013, 12:22 AM   #2
Bimmer74
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 26
Default Re: Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

I want to bump this, too... I'm facing the same question and found this dead thread.
Bimmer74 is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)
Old 10-01-2013, 06:19 AM   #3
Matt M, PA
Senior Member
 
Matt M, PA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: SE PA
Posts: 2,002
Default Re: Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

While I cannot exactly compare the two...I looked at both. In the end, I didn't have quite the clearance to the side to fit Liftmasters. At least when I bought mine, the Sommer units were substantially less expensive.

I've written on these forums several times that I am well pleased with my two Sommer openers. On one door, the opener is mounted all the way to the edge to keep it out of the way for a mid rise lift.

So, perhaps not a comparison...but at least a positive review for the Sommer operators.
Matt M, PA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2013, 11:07 AM   #4
JimmyTheMonkey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 126
Default Re: Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

I bought my Sommer direct drive off of Amazon. Note that Costco sells it even cheaper, maybe $50 less.

I'm a big fan. I don't know anything about the Liftmaster, but I would definitely replace my Sommer with another one if it ever fails. Only annoying thing is that it you have to have the photo eyes plugged in for it to work.

Also, FWIW, Sommer tech support is excellent. It's just one guy, but he returns calls quickly and helped me figure out a couple of issues that I had from trying to customize the install.

Last edited by JimmyTheMonkey; 10-07-2013 at 11:09 AM.
JimmyTheMonkey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2013, 11:46 AM   #5
AndyL
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Southern Alberta
Posts: 1,125
Default Re: Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

Your comparing apples to oranges???

A 3800/8500 would pretty much be comparable to a zap ... And Raynor's got a rebranded version, otherwise - totally different.

The sommer could compare to a chamberlain or liftmaster whisper drive plus.

Honestly I generally stick to the chamberlain lines - in this neck of the woods the other brands have 0 dealer support, even genie - our dealers aren't properly stocked with repair/maintenance parts... Meanwhile every service truck I know has just about every part for any vintage chamberlain stocked...
AndyL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2013, 12:21 PM   #6
JakeKohl
Senior Member
 
JakeKohl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Greenville, SC
Posts: 1,343
Default Re: Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

I don't understand...these are two completely different styles of opener. The 3800 leaves the overhead clear and clean, the sommer drives from the center and requires the support structure of a normal opener. I have two 3800s and they've been great. They've freed up space for overhead clearance and storage above the garage door.
__________________
Jake Kohl
Greenville, SC

My Garage Journal Build Thread

"People complain about it being too expensive. People complain about it being too small. Nobody complains about it being too big."
JakeKohl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-07-2013, 11:31 PM   #7
Bimmer74
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 26
Default Re: Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimmyTheMonkey View Post
I bought my Sommer direct drive off of Amazon. Note that Costco sells it even cheaper, maybe $50 less...

Only annoying thing is that it you have to have the photo eyes plugged in for it to work.
I can't find it on Costco.com, but it was only $265 on Amazon, with the keypad.

And ALL of them nowadays must have the eyes plugged in to work. Thank a lawyer...
Bimmer74 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-07-2013, 11:33 PM   #8
Bimmer74
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 26
Default Re: Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeKohl View Post
I don't understand...these are two completely different styles of opener. The 3800 leaves the overhead clear and clean, the sommer drives from the center and requires the support structure of a normal opener. I have two 3800s and they've been great. They've freed up space for overhead clearance and storage above the garage door.
I get this, and if I had the time/energy to totally redesign my garage door tracks, then a jackshaft would be the way to go.

Right now, though, I just need to make this work, and doing another "normal" opener seems quicker and easier... my ceiling is low, so the door ramps downward as it moves away from the opening, so it's impossible to balance perfectly.
Bimmer74 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2013, 06:31 AM   #9
Matt M, PA
Senior Member
 
Matt M, PA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: SE PA
Posts: 2,002
Default Re: Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

I mounted one of my Sommer openers at the far end of one door. Meaning, it is connected to the very upper right corner of the door with the tracks all the way to that side too. I needed clearance for a midrise lift.

Sommer explained that as long as I have the spring over the door (NOT the long springs along the tracks) their unit could be mounted on the end to retain over head clearance.
Matt M, PA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2013, 08:36 AM   #10
JimmyTheMonkey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 126
Default Re: Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bimmer74 View Post
I can't find it on Costco.com, but it was only $265 on Amazon, with the keypad.

And ALL of them nowadays must have the eyes plugged in to work. Thank a lawyer...
I have not seen it at Costco.com, just in the store. They have had that same package with the small keypad (not the big one) for around $160-180 the last 4 or 5 months at the local Costcos near me in Atlanta.
JimmyTheMonkey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2013, 12:14 PM   #11
Bimmer74
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 26
Default Re: Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

$180 would be a bargain... Amazon sells it for $228, but the keypad for outside is normally $40 (!).

The Germans really squeeze their customers on the accessories.
Bimmer74 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-14-2013, 08:24 AM   #12
JakeKohl
Senior Member
 
JakeKohl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Greenville, SC
Posts: 1,343
Default Re: Sommer Direct Drive vs Liftmaster Jackshaft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bimmer74 View Post
I get this, and if I had the time/energy to totally redesign my garage door tracks, then a jackshaft would be the way to go.

Right now, though, I just need to make this work, and doing another "normal" opener seems quicker and easier... my ceiling is low, so the door ramps downward as it moves away from the opening, so it's impossible to balance perfectly.
The liftmaster doesn't require much of the shaft protruding past the bearing...I seem to recall 1" or 1.5" was the minimum. I initially thought I would have a problem by just looking at how my doors were installed but I had more than enough material for the opener.
__________________
Jake Kohl
Greenville, SC

My Garage Journal Build Thread

"People complain about it being too expensive. People complain about it being too small. Nobody complains about it being too big."
JakeKohl is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:50 AM.