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Old 2-Feb-2018, 7:28 PM   #1
Shareit4life
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New antenna setup advice

Hello all,
I am looking for advice on a antenna setup. I just moved to the Harrington Maine area ( 04643 ). I ran the tv fool signal and interactive map analysis for my area and purchased some equipment. I would like your opinion and advice.
This is what I have purchased so far:
Antenna
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
Booster
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
Antenna Pole
https://www.amazon.com/Channel-Maste...s=antenna+pole
Coaxial Cable
https://www.amazon.com/125ftMADE-Und...al+cable&psc=1

The run will be a little over 115ft. I will be mounting this about 40 feet high in a tree. I will be cutting the top off the tree and timing the branches. ( And will trim branches yearly if needed to prevent overgrowth and antenna interference)
The questions I have is:
1.) Do you think its worth it to do this setup?
2.) Looking at signals available in my area, do you think the equipment and height of 40ft be sufficient in getting stations 40-60 miles away?
3.) What do you recommend for equipment to mount the pole to the tree? Bolts, screws, ubolts etc... Also I know this pole extends very far but I will only be extending it the most 10 feet to avoid having to run wires to the top of it for stability.

Also here is the TV Fool signal report for reference:
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...9038753c7310c5

Thank you in advance for any assistance and advice,
Gordon
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Old 2-Feb-2018, 9:38 PM   #2
ADTech
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Quite honestly, you have the wrong antenna. The DB8e is going to be of only little use for you.

Bangor ME has the distinction of being the only city in the whole country where a channel 2-13 antenna, if any still existed, would be all that's needed. With the DB8e, you should get WFVX-LD and maybe WMEB.

In any event, your plot appears to be based only on a zip code or else on an address that Google couldn't accurately geocode. Suggest you use the interactive map to pinpoint your proposed mounting location, set the proposed height, then run (and post) a new link to the new plot. That way, any ambiguity about location is removed.
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Old 3-Feb-2018, 1:38 AM   #3
Shareit4life
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Thank you ADTech,
here is the information requested.
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...9038466587e4e3

I can return the antenna that i purchased as I only purchased it 5 days ago. Any suggestion on what antenna to replace it with?
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Old 3-Feb-2018, 2:57 AM   #4
rabbit73
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Thank you for the more accurate report. To receive WLBZ NBC, you will need a BIG antenna that covers VHF-Low, real channels 2-6. There are four antennas currently available, the Winegard HD8200U, the Solid Signal HD8200XL clone, the Channel Master Advantage 100/CM-3020, and the Channel Master Masterpiece 100/CM-5020.

https://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp?p=hd8200u

https://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp?p=hd8200xl

https://www.channelmaster.com/Digita..._p/cm-3020.htm

https://www.channelmaster.com/Master..._p/cm-5020.htm
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Shareit4lifeTVFreportTVF.JPG (158.3 KB, 582 views)
File Type: jpg Shareit4lifeTVFreportRE.JPG (133.4 KB, 575 views)
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Last edited by rabbit73; 3-Feb-2018 at 3:21 AM.
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Old 3-Feb-2018, 3:33 AM   #5
rabbit73
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This is how jrgagne99 mounted his antennas in a tree:





This is page 5 of his thread:
http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=16101&page=5
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Old 3-Feb-2018, 1:42 PM   #6
JoeAZ
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Lots of very good information for you.
You can also add to your antenna list the
Channel Master 3018, available via Home
Depot for about $70.00 It covers all the
VHF and UHF bands.
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Old 3-Feb-2018, 1:42 PM   #7
Shareit4life
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Thank you guys for the great suggestions. I think Iím going to go with the Wingard 8200u. I did notice in the picture above that there were two antennas a uhf and a vhf separate . Do you guys think I could get away with just having the Windguard?
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Old 3-Feb-2018, 3:09 PM   #8
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The picture shows a UHF antenna for real channels 14-51, and an antenna for VHF-High, real channels 7-13. His antennas do not cover VHF-Low, real channels 2-6.

You have WLBZ on real channel 2, so you need an antenna that covers VHF-Low.

It is the real channel number that determines what antenna is needed.

VHF-Low, real channels 2-6
VHF-High, real channels 7-13
UHF, real channels 14-51

The virtual channel number (like 5.1) is a holdover from the analog TV days to maintain the identity of the station, and is what the TV displays.

The photo shows how someone else mounted his antennas in a tree. It doesn't mean that you must do exactly what he did. His channels are different, so he needed different antennas.

The smaller and less expensive Channel Master 3018 that JoeAZ mentioned does also cover channel 2, but it is a medium gain antenna. I only listed the highest gain antennas for channel 2. I don't really know if it has enough gain for your channel 2; there are so many variables involved.

The antennas that I listed receive all three TV bands, VHF-Low, VHF-High, and UHF.

The Winegard 8200U has the most gain, but it is the most expensive. The less expensive Solid Signal HD8200XL copy of the Winegard 8200U might do just as well, but I have no personal experience with it.
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Last edited by rabbit73; 3-Feb-2018 at 3:28 PM.
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Old 3-Feb-2018, 3:35 PM   #9
Shareit4life
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Thank you for the explanation and vast information,
I will have to test it myself when I get the antenna in and rent the cherry picker next week.
I hope to mount the antenna about 5 -8 feet above the tree line using the pole I listed above.
Thank you again for all your advice and help with this.
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Old 4-Feb-2018, 3:31 PM   #10
Shareit4life
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rabbit73 View Post
The picture shows a UHF antenna for real channels 14-51, and an antenna for VHF-High, real channels 7-13. His antennas do not cover VHF-Low, real channels 2-6.

You have WLBZ on real channel 2, so you need an antenna that covers VHF-Low.

It is the real channel number that determines what antenna is needed.

VHF-Low, real channels 2-6
VHF-High, real channels 7-13
UHF, real channels 14-51

The virtual channel number (like 5.1) is a holdover from the analog TV days to maintain the identity of the station, and is what the TV displays.

The photo shows how someone else mounted his antennas in a tree. It doesn't mean that you must do exactly what he did. His channels are different, so he needed different antennas.

The smaller and less expensive Channel Master 3018 that JoeAZ mentioned does also cover channel 2, but it is a medium gain antenna. I only listed the highest gain antennas for channel 2. I don't really know if it has enough gain for your channel 2; there are so many variables involved.

The antennas that I listed receive all three TV bands, VHF-Low, VHF-High, and UHF.

The Winegard 8200U has the most gain, but it is the most expensive. The less expensive Solid Signal HD8200XL copy of the Winegard 8200U might do just as well, but I have no personal experience with it.
Just a follow up question,
Is there any adapter that I could purchase that would help with the gain issue other than the adapter I already have which is this one:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 4-Feb-2018, 8:29 PM   #11
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The CM7777HD/Amplify preamp that you have selected is suitable for your location.

Preamp gain can not compensate for an antenna that is too small. If the signal coming out of the antenna is a weak poor quality signal, the preamp will make it a strong poor quality signal; GIGO.
https://www.google.com/search?source....0.tWtyepCryeo
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Old 5-Feb-2018, 1:59 PM   #12
jrgagne99
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I recommend doing the amplification down at the base of the tree. That way if the pre-amp fails, it is easier to replace. Also, I used RG-11 for my 50-ft downlead to save about 1dB over RG-6 because I have some very marginal signals on UHF. If you do put two separate UHF/VHF antennas up there, I recommend running separate coax leads to the base of the tree and doing both the combining and amplification at ground level, for the same reasons.

I used gable-mount hardware to mount an 8-foot pole parallel to the tree trunk. I mounted the UHF antenna to the pole in the standard configuration, but for the VHF-hi antenna, I moved the mounting bracket almost all the way to the back of the antenna and added a 45-degree brace to the antenna to help support the cantilevered beam. This worked for me, but probably wouldn't work on a big long VHF-lo antenna. If I were to mount one of those, I think I would cut the top of the tree off (as you're planning), and then use two gable mounts spaced at least 24" apart to extend a pole up over the top of the tree and then mount the VHF-lo rig way up in the clear.

BTW are you able to rent a man-left that goes up 50 feet or more? The biggest I could find locally was 35-ft, until my neighbor lent me his 60-footer. But if you space the gable mounts sufficiently far apart, you could put the pole loosely into them, then mount the antenna (and coax) then slide the pole up into the air and gain a good 8-feet of height relative to the man-lift's maximum.

Keep in mind that higher is not always better, though it usually is. You might want some way to check for reception while you're up there, to help get your height and aim optimized. I had a portable 7" TV that helped a great deal in my setup. It is also possible to build a signal strength meter out of a Winegard SensarPro RV-unit. The review on Amazon has instructions, it might also be in my thread...

Last edited by jrgagne99; 5-Feb-2018 at 2:09 PM.
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Old 5-Feb-2018, 3:37 PM   #13
rickbb
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrgagne99 View Post

You might want some way to check for reception while you're up there, to help get your height and aim optimized. I had a portable 7" TV that helped a great deal in my setup. It is also possible to build a signal strength meter out of a Winegard SensarPro RV-unit. The review on Amazon has instructions, it might also be in my thread...
I use a laptop with a USB tuner for this. Really helps a lot to aim your antenna. Sometimes just using a compass direction does not give you the best signal.

You don't want to go to all this trouble only to find out you need to go back up to turn the antenna a few degrees this way or that.
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Old 5-Feb-2018, 4:18 PM   #14
ADTech
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Quote:
The CM7777HD/Amplify preamp that you have selected is suitable for your location.
If not for it's use of USB power, I'd agree with you. However, with the OP's very long cable length, I'd disqualify the "HD" version out of concern for power starvation due to voltage drop in the coax. We've been down that path before.
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Old 5-Feb-2018, 5:41 PM   #15
Shareit4life
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Thanks for the information here. I am renting the cherry picker from sun belt rentals and using there 40 foot one.
For the gable mount do you recommend any in particular?
I was planning of putting the preamp at the bottom of the tree.
Also I will be purchasing these
https://www.amazon.com/Guide-Gear-25...ds=tree+ladder
for the initial 25 feet from the ground up and then to sets of these to get another 20 feet.
https://www.amazon.com/Muddy-MCS1200...limbing+sticks
My friend who is a hunter has used the latter for years and they work great for someone under 250 lbs.
Once I have those setup I will be able to access the antenna easier if needed in the future.
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Old 5-Feb-2018, 5:41 PM   #16
Shareit4life
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Thanks ADtech,
is there one you recommend?
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Old 5-Feb-2018, 5:46 PM   #17
ADTech
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From our selection, I'd use either a P18+FM Filter or a Juice.

The FM filter is just insurance against strong local FM signals getting into the PA18 and causing intermods. Not a concern with the Juice, it's very difficult to get it to exhibit intermods due to its robust overload resistance.
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Old 5-Feb-2018, 5:48 PM   #18
jrgagne99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shareit4life View Post
For the gable mount do you recommend any in particular?
I just used something like these:
https://www.amazon.com/Solid-Signal-...na+gable+mount


Quote:
Originally Posted by Shareit4life View Post
Also I will be purchasing these
https://www.amazon.com/Guide-Gear-25...ds=tree+ladder
for the initial 25 feet from the ground up and then to sets of these to get another 20 feet.
https://www.amazon.com/Muddy-MCS1200...limbing+sticks
My friend who is a hunter has used the latter for years and they work great for someone under 250 lbs.
Once I have those setup I will be able to access the antenna easier if needed in the future.
Eeek! Ladders of 20-feet up to a fixed hunting tree stand is one thing. Adding more strap-on steps, with nylon straps that will invariably weather over time due to sun and wind seems very dangerous. My recommendation is to do your very best job on the installation with the cherry picker, and then call it good. It's not worth falling 40-feet out of a tree for TV. There's never anything on anyways...

Last edited by jrgagne99; 5-Feb-2018 at 5:51 PM.
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Old 5-Feb-2018, 5:49 PM   #19
Shareit4life
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Juice it is then
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Old 5-Feb-2018, 6:05 PM   #20
Shareit4life
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrgagne99 View Post
I just used something like these:
https://www.amazon.com/Solid-Signal-...na+gable+mount




Eeek! Ladders of 20-feet up to a fixed hunting tree stand is one thing. Adding more strap-on steps, with nylon straps that will invariably weather over time due to sun and wind seems very dangerous. My recommendation is to do your very best job on the installation with the cherry picker, and then call it good. It's not worth falling 40-feet out of a tree for TV. There's never anything on anyways...
I agree with you and will not even try if they are nylon straps. My friend said they come with stainless steel chains as an option to hook around the tree instead of the nylon straps which I was going to use. I am going to go actually look at them this week to see if its worth it and if they will actually last as the weather up here is brutal with the salt air.
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