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Old 9-Jul-2014, 11:47 PM   #41
kenj66
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Alright, my system is mostly done. I'm still waiting for the PCT power inserter so am using a long extension cord and 10 feet of coax to feed power to the PCT preamp.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BxY...it?usp=sharing

I mounted the preamp under the eaves where I can get at it with a stepladder. Perhaps you will notice the Scotch 2228 moisture sealing electrical tape.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BxY...it?usp=sharing

I was getting only FOX and ABC but now in addition get NBC, CBS and several "bonus" channels. Momma and me are quite satisfied! Thanks everyone.
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Old 10-Jul-2014, 1:14 AM   #42
Pete Higgins
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Nice job. Glad you’re happy with the outcome. Thanks for reporting back on your success –encouragement for the rest of us.
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Old 19-Jul-2014, 9:06 PM   #43
kenj66
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Follow up

Several days ago I received a Mediasonic HomeWorX HW180STB tuner box from Amazon. The primary use for this box was to replace the poor built-in tuner in my older HDTV. Happily, the HW180STB is not plagued by the signal "stuttering" of the HDTV tuner but has the disadvantage of being somewhat less sensitive to the available channels, rendering the desired CBS affiliate unwatchable. The surprise secondary use for this box is it provides a continuous display of the selected channel signal strength - just what I needed!

In order to fine tune the azimuth of my new antenna I used an old 13 inch analog TV I have been keeping around for editing SDTV video tapes and connected the analog input from that to the tuner box analog output. The built-in digital to analog conversion of the HW180STB displayed HDTV images perfectly on the SDTV! After sunset one evening I set the old set, face up, on my back deck just below the antenna. I was able to fine tune the antenna azimuth to get the very best signal from the CBS station. It was worth 35 bucks just for that. Just press the "Info" button twice to get the signal strength display. BTW, I found that the tilt-elevation of the antenna was very imprecise. Just set set it a couple degrees above any obstructions in the distance and call it good.

The HW180STB has a surprisingly good program guide function. It will pull an entire evening's programming from many of the stations. This is one function I have NEVER seen from a built-in TV tuner.

Honestly, I didn't anticipate a great deal of functionality from such an inexpensive device. The companion model HW150STB has a PVR function which can use your USB storage devices for saving programs. I am sufficiently happy with this device to say that I should have spent just a few dollars more to get that model.

Last edited by kenj66; 21-Jul-2014 at 12:05 AM.
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Old 4-Aug-2014, 10:40 PM   #44
kenj66
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Follow up (2)

I am still having problems with my desired and most difficult station, KIRO 7.1 UHF 39. It has the most "bounce" or variation of any of the stations in my area. Sometimes it is stable enough to watch a program with only minor dropouts but at other times it drops out completely for several seconds at a time - and then comes back with perfect reception for a while. This condition is tolerable until we find something more important to watch such as the recent Seattle Seafair hydroplane races with appearances of the Navy Blue Angels jets performing. The stuttering signals were most annoying!

I moved my PCT preamp and attached it directly to the AD 91XG balun box just like Pete Higgins showed me to do. This put the preamp 25 feet closer to the antenna. Unfortunately, this did not show any better performance. My preamp is the PCT-MA-B1015-1A and it is bigger than Pete's so it didn't quite fit squarely with the antenna's boom.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BxY...it?usp=sharing

As a solution I am wondering if the Winguard 7777 or the RCA unit suggested here on the forum would work better since the gain looks to be 8 to 10 db better than the PCT? Could I just put a 75 ohm termination on the VHF input and have it do the job?
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Old 6-Aug-2014, 5:19 AM   #45
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I would expect the CM-7777 would be overloaded due to the powerful signals from Gold Mt. (KCPQ, KTBW & various FM stations). The TVPRAMP1R may have slightly better noise performance, but not enough to make me believe that you would see a noticeable improvement in signal quality as compared to the PCT amp.

I believe that your problem is not primarily one of raw signal strength... But rather an issue of quality. Just as a water pump can not make dirty water clean when it increases the pressure, an amplifier amplifies both the signal and any interference received by the antenna.

I believe you'll have better success experimenting with antenna location and/or elevation.
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Old 6-Aug-2014, 7:57 PM   #46
kenj66
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OK neighbor, thanks for the advice. Since Seafair Sunday the signal has settled down with just a few pixel breakups from time to time. Perhaps the airplane and helicopter traffic covering the races contributed to the mess that day.

I seem to be right under the flyway for SeaTac jetliners headed to Hawaii and I am pleasantly surprised I don't notice more fluttering signals from those.

Last edited by kenj66; 6-Aug-2014 at 8:00 PM.
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Old 6-Aug-2014, 8:35 PM   #47
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Wikipedia is showing that one of the Repeater/translator stations of KIRO is K26IC-D , Real current UHF channel 26.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/KIRO-TV

The transmitter is in the opposite direction at about 275 degree magnetic compass direction.

To Test for reception.

Aim the XG91 antenna at about 275 degree magnetic compass direction.

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Here is how to aim antennas.

http://www.kyes.com/antenna/pointing/pointing.html.

Use a Real and Actual magnetic compass to aim antenna , do not trust a , cell phone , tablet and etc. compass.

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Rescan for channels.

Also , Digital Tuners can develop - Digital Glitches - that are not cleared out with simple channel scans.

To clear tuner do Double Rescan.

http://www.wchstv.comDoubleReScanAlert.pdf.

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If reception of K26IC-D is received OK.

Then leave the XG91 aimed at K26IC-D.

The reception of K26IC-D Will Be a Separate Antenna System known as antenna system #2.

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Antenna system #2 and antenna system #1 , are No Connected Together.

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Antenna system #1.

Install a.

http://www.channelmasterstore.com.

CM4228HD antenna aimed at about 75 degree magnetic compass direction.

Connect a , CM7778 preamplifier.

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Here are some Tuner/Tuner Recorders that connect to the antenna system and Tv.

http://www.epvision.com.

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As always , trees and tree leaves , plants and plant leaves , have a Negative Effect on Broadcast Tv Reception and so do buildings and other obstructions including your own , attic , roof , building , in the directions of reception , East North East , South , South West , West.

Some and not all Negative Effects are.

Absorbing Blocking Reception.

Multi-Path Reflecting Tv Signals Bouncing All Around.

The Best Practice for Reliable Reception is to install antennas at a location that has the least amount to no amount of obstructions of any type or kind in the directions of reception including your own , attic , roof , building.

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As a Test to prove reception of antenna system #2 and antenna system#1 , connect a New continues length coax and run the coax through a open door or window direct to Tv.

Remember antenna systems #2 and #1 are not connected together.

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Here are some antenna mounts that will get the antenna/s up higher.

http://www.ronard.com/909911.html. Install the , ronard(911) , 5 foot tripod antenna mount.

http://www.ronard.com/712.html. Install the , ronard(712-50-10) , 10 foot tripod antenna mount.

http://www.ronard.com/ychim.html. Measure around the chimney and use a , ronard(2212) , ronard(2218) , ronard(2224).

http://www.ronard.com.

-----

http://www.palcoelectronics.com/pe300.aspx.

Light weight aluminum , Free standing , No guy wire , Lay over towers.
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Old 8-Nov-2014, 8:40 PM   #48
kenj66
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After three months living with this antenna system I find myself dissatisfied/disappointed and I am reconsidering the advice from 'teleview.' Channel 7 (39) is seldom watchable since it breaks up all the time. In addition all the other channels experience momentary signal breakup which I have suspected all along as being from signal overload coming from channel 13 which is only five miles away.

Although the summer weather has long departed I will swing my 91 XG around toward the Silverdale channel 7 (26) repeater and see how it goes for a few days. That repeater looks to be only 3 miles away so a deep fringe antenna seems like a waste but - since I have it........

@teleview you recommended a 8 bay bow tie antenna, the CM4228HD, and I am wondering why. I like the Wineguard HD7698P since it seems like a more aggressive design for deep fringe and it would have the advantage of greater directivity, which would discriminate against my channel 13 interference. I do recall reading an experienced poster recently who claimed that these deep fringe antennas need more surface area to overcome signal dropout problems. If that is true perhaps I would consider the change to bow tie since the Wineguard is more expensive and the boom is 14 feet long!

Ken

Edit: Well, it only took a couple of hours. I removed the PCT line amplifier, swung the beam around and locked on channel 7 transmitting on real channel 26 in Silverdale, Washington - 100 percent. A 91XG three miles away ought to lock in solid! So, I now can acquire a new high-vhf/uhf main antenna. Is it bow tie or yagii

Last edited by kenj66; 8-Nov-2014 at 10:56 PM.
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Old 12-Dec-2014, 11:30 PM   #49
kenj66
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Follow up (3)

(I will describe all channels as real)

1. Dissatisfied with channel 39 CBS reception out of Seattle and
2. Being told my PCT amplifier was not a true TV preamp

I purchase a second antenna, a 42XG, which I pointed toward the CBS repeater on channel 26 in Silverdale, WA, about three miles away. I also purchased a combiner/preamp, an RCA TVPRAMP1R, from Walmart for 22 dollars.

This combination runs circles around the previous setup! The TVPRAMP1R works so much better that, including sub-channels, I now get 12 more channels! Except for occasional 1Edge and 2Edge dropouts almost all stations are 100 percent. Now I am much happier.

Ken

Last edited by kenj66; 14-Dec-2014 at 1:40 AM.
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Old 16-Dec-2014, 5:27 AM   #50
GroundUrMast
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Thanks for the update.

So do you still have the 91XG aimed at Seattle?
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If the well is dry and you don't see rain on the horizon, you'll need to dig the hole deeper. (If the antenna can't get the job done, an amp won't fix it.)

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Old 16-Dec-2014, 6:56 AM   #51
kenj66
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Originally Posted by GroundUrMast View Post
Thanks for the update.

So do you still have the 91XG aimed at Seattle?
Hi neighbor!
Yes, the 91XG is still pointed toward Queen Anne Hill. My little four and a half foot mast looks like I have a communications center!

Ken
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Old 3-Nov-2015, 12:38 AM   #52
kenj66
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Lessons Learned After One Year

1. I used Scotch sealer tape to waterproof my RG-6 connectors. In the repeated process of tweaking the antennas I had to cut off the sealer tape with a razor knife and reapply when done. Apparently, while adding and removing the tape I managed to break something inside the balun box for the 91XG. After testing to make sure this was the ailment I contacted Antennas Direct on their website. The AD rep sent a new balun/director assembly gratis! Great business and people! The great reception of the awesome 91XG antenna has been restored!
-----> I DECIDED NOT TO SEAL MY CONNECTORS NOW.
-----> Antenna Direct is a great outfit to do business with!

2. I had previously complained that KIRO channel 7(39) Seattle was prone to weak signal breakup. While troubleshooting my antenna problems I decided to replace the RCA preamp with a Channel Master 7777. It is three times the cost of an RCA but but KIRO comes in 100 percent now in this 2edge reception area. The local channel interference from FOX 13 I was warned about has not been a problem.
-----> CHANNEL MASTER 7777 PREAMP HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
(It looks like this is the only high gain preamp being sold now).

Ken
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Old 3-Nov-2015, 1:30 PM   #53
Tim
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Originally Posted by kenj66 View Post
-----> I DECIDED NOT TO SEAL MY CONNECTORS NOW.
Even with compression connectors I recommend that any connectors outdoors be sealed against moisture intrusion. A gradual ingress of water into the connector will seep into the coaxial shield and be wicked up the cable and will eventually cause signal degradation which can be difficult to diagnose. I use self fusing silicone tape available at your local big box home improvement store to seal my outdoor antenna connections.
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Old 4-Nov-2015, 10:14 PM   #54
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Even with compression connectors I recommend that any connectors outdoors be sealed against moisture intrusion. A gradual ingress of water into the connector will seep into the coaxial shield and be wicked up the cable and will eventually cause signal degradation which can be difficult to diagnose. I use self fusing silicone tape available at your local big box home improvement store to seal my outdoor antenna connections.
I use a spray can of white lithium grease and put a light coating on the connectors. Seems to work well to keep water out and the connectors can be undone easily. WD 40 and the like will dry out quickly, you need a thick grease that will hang around under the sun, wind and rain.
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Old 5-Nov-2015, 10:03 PM   #55
kenj66
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Thanks for the warning and recommendations, guys.

Tim, perhaps there is a better sealing tape to use. I used the Scotch one inch wide Professional Grade #2228 Moisture Sealing Electrical Tape. It definitely is up to the job! Trouble is I have to razor knife the tape and reef on it hard to get the stuff to come off.

rickbb, I have used dark lithium grease for trailer hitches which works very well but it is a substance you don't want to get on your clothes! I have never heard of white lithium grease, especially in a spray form. What happens if you need to service or just tweak the antennas? You said the connectors can be undone easily - but are they really re-usable?

Ken
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Old 6-Nov-2015, 2:22 PM   #56
Tim
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Originally Posted by kenj66 View Post
Tim, perhaps there is a better sealing tape to use. I used the Scotch one inch wide Professional Grade #2228 Moisture Sealing Electrical Tape. It definitely is up to the job! Trouble is I have to razor knife the tape and reef on it hard to get the stuff to come off.
The silicone fusing tape I recommended is easy to remove as it has no adhesive. You apply it like tape and it sticks to itself. Over a couple of days time it fuses into one solid coating of silicone rubber. You can slit it lightly with a razor and it peels off easily.

My neighbor (an auto mechanic) had good success waterproofing his antenna connections with Permatex Dielectric Tune-Up Grease that is available at many auto parts stores.
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Old 6-Nov-2015, 9:11 PM   #57
kenj66
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Thanks for the tips Tim. I'm going to check them out.

Ken
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