Q: What is LTCGear?
A: LTCGear is a company where you can purchase mining shares that can pay out in Litecoin (LTC) or Bitcoin (BTC) (at the basic level). There are no choices of pools and you do not directly control the mining. You are purchasing shares in a farm.
Q: What is a “share”? How much hashpower is it?
A: 1 share of qASIC is 100Kh/s, Every 10 shares you own is equivalent to 1MH of Scrypt hashing power. Bitcoin is not mined directly. Scrypt-N coins are only mined through mods (see below).
Q: How long do shares last?
A: Shares are good for 1 year at a time and can be renewed by paying a maintenance fee at the end of the year. The expected renewal charge is between 5% and 20% but as the qASIC shares are not 1 year old yet, no one has any further details. It is assumed that Chris will set the rate based on current conditions at he time of renewal which would explain the large variance in the given estimates.
Q: When do I get paid
A: Payouts are currently every Friday but may be made earlier in the week if the owner’s (Chris) personal schedule requires it. You need to first select what cryptocurrency you want your payouts in.
Always check the announcements section at http://www.ltcgear.com/announcements/ for the latest information
Payouts generally occur between 2pm and 11pm EST.
Litecoin (LTC) and FeatherCoin (FTC) get paid first, DarkCoin (DRK) and VertCoin (VTC) follow, then Bitcoin (BTC) and finally conversion to shares happens if that’s the payout option you chose.
Q: How can I see what the weekly payout amounts are
A: By going to http://ltcgear.com/ltc-payments/ or clicking Farm Payments at the top of the screen you will be able to see the daily payouts and the weekly totals as well as all exchange rates Chris used for this payout cycle
Q: Do I get paid for the whole week if I buy in the middle of the week?
A: Yes. Chris takes a snapshot at some point the day before payouts and at that point any new purchases would not be counted in that weeks payout. To be safe, make sure you have your shares 24 hours before the payout day.
Please note: If it is a multiplier week, you do not receive payout for the entire week based on the multiplied shares. If you have 1,000 shares for 4 days and 1,350 shares for 3 days (i.e. you received 350 shares as your multiplier) that is how it is calculated, not 1,350 shares for 7 days.
An explanation from Chris can be found here: https://hashtalk.org/topic/8439/all-ltcgear-posts-and-discussion-belong-here/167
Purchasing and Payment Section
Q: What is the anniversary deal
A: The anniversary deal is a special Chris started in Aug 2014 to celebrate his first year in business. By using the coupon code “anniversary1yr” (no quotes) at checkout you will receive 49% off the price of a 1K6x (1600 QAsic share pack) or a 830x (830 QAsic share pack). The code does not work on any of the “mods” available.
Q: How can I pay for my shares
A: Chris currently has 2 options for you to pay with. Coinpayments.net will allow you to pay in various crypto currencies such as bitcoin, litecoin and other altcoins. The second option is to buy via straight Bitcoin. This option also provides an additional 8% discount off your order total and can be used in conjunction with active coupons.
If you do not have any Bitcoin, then you will need to buy some from a broker or exchange.
Q: Does LTCGear take Paypal
A: Short answer is no. Chris used to accept Paypal at the start of 2014 but due to issues with Paypal he has since stopped accepting this as a payment method. The site has not been updated to reflect this is no longer a valid payment method.
Q: Does LTCGear take credit cards?
A: No. This option is not available either. The company supports cryptocurrencies by only accepting that form of payment.
Q: I paid for my order and it still says On-Hold
A: Chris requires 3 confirmations on the blockchain (for bitcoin payments). Once this has happened your order status should change to “Processing” and you should see the additional shares have been added to your account. Once your order shows “Processing” your shares are active and mining, the order does not need to be “Completed” in order for you to get credit for the shares.
Depending on what Bitcoin wallet you use, you may also need to include transaction fees. 2 satoshis (0.000002 Bitcoins) is usually enough. If your order seems to hang, then contact Chris and he will sort out the issue quickly for you.
More information can be found here: http://ltcgear.com/convert-to-shares/
Q: What is the convert to share option available as a payout option
A: This new option will allow your weekly payout to be converted directly to shares at approximately a 60% discount to current pricing. Its a great way to acquire more shares if you are not able to purchase entire packs at a time.
Chris’s explanation can be found here: http://ltcgear.com/convert-to-shares/
Q: What are Farmshare or Hardware shares (HW$)
A: These are old products that are no longer available for purchase. All current shares are called ASIC Shares (q of Asic) and are labelled qASIC
Q: Why are there no smaller packs available for purchase
A: Unknown at this time, but it seems Chris is only restocking the 1600 share (Anniversary 1K6x) and the 830 share (830x) options. For smaller purchases you will need to find someone offsite willing to sell shares. Please be careful and always use escrow if you do decide to pursue this method.
Q: How do I set my payment addresses
A: Click the My Account menu option. You will find entries for Scrypt (LTC or FTC), X11 (DRK), Scrypt-n (VTC) and SHA-256 (BTC). Chris has recommended you fill in all 4 address fields to avoid any delays in your weekly payout. Remember to hit the Change button for each address you fill in or it will not be saved.
Q: How do I decide what coin I wish to receive payment in
A: Directly beneath the payment addresses is a drop down for Coin Choice. If you do not own any mods you will only be able to select BTC, LTC or Convert to shares.
If you have any dual mods you can select X11 or Scrypt-N to be paid out in that currency.
Chris has a full tutorial that can be found here: http://ltcgear.com/coin-choice/
Q: How do I get in on this Referral deal AKA How to become an Affiliate
A: Under the My Account tab at the top of the page, you can select Affiliate Area (last option).
Once you have signed up by providing all the required information you will be presented with your affiliate link as well as statistics on how many referrals you currently have.
Your affiliate link will be in the format:http://ltcgear.com?apage=XXX where XXX is your number.
Please note: Make sure to use the same email for your referral account as you did for your main ltcgear account. Failure to do so can result in delays of referral payments as the information will not match.
Q: When do I receive my referral pay it wasn’t with the normal payout
A: Referral payments are currently made each Sunday evening. Again check http://www.ltcgear.com for the latest timetable. Referral payouts can take up to two weeks.
Q: How do I make sure I use the right affiliate link
A: When you click an affiliate link a cookie is placed in your browser that will last for 1 week. If you want to make sure you are using the link you think you are, clear cookies for ltcgear.com in your broswer BEFORE clicking on the affiliate link you want to use.
Q: Who is this Chris guy who runs it?
A: On his website the following information can be found:
About LTCGear Owner/Operator Chris:
FPGA designer for 15 years. Altcoin miner for two years. Altcoin developer for one year.
Q: How do I contact this Chris person
A: You can use the contact form on the site.
By going to the My Account option and then Contact you will be able to submit a form to contact Chris.
A secondary method is to email him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please note: Unless you have a support issue your mail will most likely go unanswered. It appears Chris does not have time for idle chit-chat or general messaging back and forth.
Hard Questions & History
Q: Is this a scam or a ponzi? How can prices be so cheap in comparison to others?
A: So far no, this is not a scam.
LTCGear has been around for over a year and started by selling physical hardware Chris designed himself. He then moved to selling shares in his farm and has evolved to the current environment we now see.
As he at one time had a physical presence, his name and address are known (from that period). Chris has promised pictures of his farm but it appears to be a low priority for him.
As with all Crypto Investments, please make sure you do all the due diligence you require in order to feel comfortable investing or not investing with this company.
An ongoing discussion on LTCGear’s legitimacy can be found on litecointalk here: https://litecointalk.org/index.php?topic=22433.0
Q: What is multiplication
A: As we all know, the mining difficulty rises which lowers our expected payouts. LTCGear has come up with a unique solution to help his shareholders. Approximately every 6 to 8 weeks Chris will issue a “multiplier”. This will take all your shares and multiply them by whatever factor he has decided on (usually tied to the amount the difficulty has risen since last multiplier). For instance, the last multiplier was 1.35 (35%) and if you owned 1,000 shares, at the end of the multiplier you would have ended up with 1,350 shares. Yes, free shares for everyone. This helps defer the payout decline you would otherwise experience if difficulty rose 35% and you hadn’t purchased additional shares to reinvest.
Q: How can I transfer shares to someone else
A: LTCGear allows you to transfer any number of shares directly to another user. To use this feature please find the Transfer Shares option on the bottom of the right hand side of all the screens it will look like the image below.
You will need to know the username of the person you are transferring to. This can be found on the users “Account” screen, it will say Hello, <usename>.
*Note: Fill in the username and amount of shares you wish to send the user and click the Transfer button. You will receive a popup message indicating the transfer is complete within seconds
Q: What are these “mods” people keeping talking about so much?
A: When you purchase shares, you are buying shares that mine Scrypt Coins. A “mod” allows you the opportunity to mine different algorithms such as X-11 or Scrypt-N.
Depending on which mod you purchase you can devote an amount of shares to mining that other algorithm. For instance, purchasing a dual mod 10 allows up to 630 of your shares to mine either X-11 or Scrypt-N (you choose).
So if you feel DRK or VTC is having an exceptionally good week, you can devote a portion of your mining power towards those coins and receive a larger payout than if you would have mined just LTC that week.
Please note: Mods are not affected by the multiplier. If your mod allows 630 shares to mine X11 it will still only mine 630 shares of X11 after the multiplication (ie it is a modifier, not a share itself)
Mods sell out fast so they can be difficult to find and purchase. Keep trying, they do go back in stock frequently
Also note, that VertCoin (VTC) (a Scrypt-N coin) will be changing its algorithm at the end of November (2014). Chris has said he will try to support it but no guarantees.
Keep this in mind when evaluating whether or not a “mod” is a good purchase for you
Obvious nature of crypto currency:
Q: Why does the website look like it was designed by an amateur.
A: Chris has many skills, apparently web design is not one of them. It is definitely not the prettiest and can sometimes be difficult to find what you are looking for, but have no fear, it is a fully functional website.
Chris always updates the home page with any current information (such as delays in payments or payouts running long). Remember to check there and the Announcement section for the latest updates.
Q: How can I see how many shares I have
A: On the right hand side of the screen under Active Shares you should be able to see how many shares you currently own
Q: Is there an IRC channel for LTCGear?
A: Not on official one or even one endorsed by Chris. However a channel can be found here: http://webchat.freenode.net/?channels=#ltcgear
Q: Is there an official forum for LTCGear
A: No, Chris uses the name “beekeeper” on a variety of forums such as litecointalk and bitcointalk but does not have an official forum himself.
He provides the most updates in this thread at litecointalk: https://litecointalk.org/index.php?topic=6401