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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm trying to setup a new antenna to get all the DTV stations in my area. Looking at antennaweb.org I found that all the channels I want to get are on one of two vectors. My thoughts are to use 2 antennas and make a jointtena. I've never done this before so any advice would be great. Here are the specs:


First group of stations all lie on a line 152 degrees from north. They are all fairly close and only require a Small Multi-directional antenna. Channels include:


27, 34, 36, 39, and 48


The second group is much further away and lies on a line 68 degrees from north. These are listed as requiring a Medium Directional antenna, some with pre-amp some without. Channels include:


38, 42, 43, 46, 52, and 59 (52 being the most important)


If at all possible I wanted to use a single mast. I'd like recommendations as to which antennas to use and what hardware to use to (pre-)amp and combine the signals. Any suggestions would be great.


-apnar
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by apnar
I'm trying to setup a new antenna to get all the DTV stations in my area. -apnar
It is possible to join two antennas and get them working so you won't need a rotator. I suggest getting a medium gain UHF to get you close stations and a high gain UHF to get your distant stations. They must be at least 4' apart. The problem is with multipath. If you live in an area with many hills, tall buildings or trees you may experience multipath which will degrade your signal. You would use a splitter/combiner to combine both signals. A pre-amp may not be needed but installing one may save you a trip to the roof later.


Rotators are OK when you have some channel which you watch occassionally, but they are a pain to constantly have to switch.


You can find lots of information on antennas at:

www.starkelectronic.com
 

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I agree that a rotator is your best bet. Based on your station numbers, I'm assuming you want to receive stations in D.C. and Baltimore. I live in Howard County, MD and just recently had a Channel Master Stealthtenna with amp and rotator installed. It works great. I am receiving (D.C.) stations 34, 36, 39, and 48 at 100% signal strength. DC #27 at 80%. I receive (Balt) stations 38, 46, 52, and 59 at 100% signal strength also. I have the remote controlled Channel Master Rotator. It works great. It allows you to memorize the optimum location for each station. Then whenever you tune in to that station, you merely select that station # from the rotator's remote control.
 

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apnar: If you are using a DTC-100, then you could use the A and B OTA inputs each fed by a different antenna. Then you would just toggle between DC and Baltimore on your remote.
 

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I agree with the advice to install a rotator. I installed a rotator for an antenna in my attic and I'm able to pull in stations from both San Diego and Los Angeles. The San Diego tower locations are southwest and southeast and the Los Angeles tower is on Mt. Wilson, northwest from me. A rotator will give you flexibility that fixed antennas can't.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for all the advice. I really wanted to stay away from the rotor as I will be doing some unattended recording with my AccessDTV card. Although it would be possible to rig up some system to send out commands to the rotor at certain times it would add greatly to the complexity of recording. Also, I'm a big believer that the less moving parts the better. So given that....


Does anyone have any suggestions for how to do this without using a rotor??? Would a pre-amped medium size directional antenna pointed at the further stations still pickup enough from the close ones to work? Is there anyway to just combine the signals from 2 antennas?


Thanks.


-apnar
 

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apnar,

I was in the same boat as you. My local OTA digital stations (18,38,39,41,48) transmit from 2 locations, one antenna farm is north (approx 25 miles) and the other is north east (approx. 30 miles). I tried one antenna but I couldn't find a sweet spot for all of them. After reading all the posts on rotors and jointtena's a went against the conscience and did the following. I bought 2 silver sensor antennas and placed them in my attic one pointing north the other pointing NE. I then bought some RG6 cable and a two way spitter. The two antenna cables connect at the splitter with one line leading out to my DTC-100. I now get all of my digital stations perfectly and in all kinds of weather. The non-digital stations are awful but I have cable for those. Hope this helps.

Regards,

Jeff
 

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The rotor attaches to the main mast using U-clamps (usually towards or at the top of the mast). Then a smaller extension mast is attached to the top of the rotor (the part that actually rotates) again using U-clamps. The antenna attaches to the extension.


At least that's how my rotor (CM variety, not sure of model #...the one that comes with the remote box :p) is setup. This is done to reduce the strain placed on the gearing mechanisms in the rotor...the longer the upper mast, the more torsional force that would be applied to the inner gearings...essentially a big lever....not good. My extension mast is just long enough to raise the bottom of my YAGI so that it clears the rotor mechanism by about 4-6"...I get clear full 360 rotation with the shortest extension mast possible.


Cheers!


Rich
 
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