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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Howdy.


I spent the weekend hooking up my Hughes E86 receiver and the Elliptical dish. Well, I am lucky enough to live in Houston where there is a lot of OTA content, and the PBS demo loop was amazing. But I was frustrated when I finally found the signals from the 101 (A) and 119 (B) satellites and they were nowhere near one another, and that I couldn't pick up both signals with one dish. Has anyone successfully picked up both satellite signals on a single dish? If so, what tips might you have?


Is it better just to go ahead and find a second dish to hook up? Can I just use an old used one? Where to get one of these online?


Thanks in advance.
 

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I have Direct TV and I'm using the oval dish to pick up both birds. I get 90+ signals on the 101 sat. and 80+ signals on the 119 sat.


Make sure you are using the proper tilt for your dish, it's different than a round dish. Mine is really cocked to one side, and I just used the numbers from the Direct TV website after punching in my zipcode.


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Jon
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I just replaced my 18" dish with a 24" elliptical dish in order to get local channels in my area. I initially had a problem aiming it and getting anything at all.


Because the 24" dish was larger, I couldn't mount it in the same location as the 18" dish, so I mounted it on the same fence, but about two fence posts closer to the house and higher on the fence. I eyeballed where the 18" dish was pointing and then started by pointing the 24" dish in the same direction. I got squat. I finally tried swinging the 24" dish farther south than it should be and then swinging it back east. I used a cheap satellite finder to help me get the inital signal. I hooked the receiver back up and got both satellites. With a little fine tuning I finally had mid-80's on the 101 sat and mid 60's on the 119 sat. When I was all done, the 24" dish looked to be at least 15 degrees farther south than where the 18" was pointing.


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Tom


Sony SAT-T60 DirecTc>ic>Vc>oc> w/2.0.1

Sony SAN-24MD 24" elliptical dish
 

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I've been using the 24 inch dish for over a year to get both signals. There was some drama getting them both the first few tries. I just put the installation in temporarily in another building and so far I have not been able to get both. The mount is a fence and it is too limber. It is imperitive that the mount be plumb to the earth. Use a plumb line (heavy object on a string) and make sure that the tube is parallel to the line in all planes or use a bullseye bubble level on the end of the tube. Only then will all the geometry of the dish and LNBs and satelites work.
 

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Terry is right about the mast having to be exactly plumb.

If it isn't, you will not get both satellites to work off the same dish correctly. Also, the 119 satellite has a weaker signal that the 101. Hope this helps.


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Ron
 

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I just installed an oval dish here last week. I set my tilt and elevation on the ground according to what my DTC100 told me to set it at, then mounted it on my existing former 18 inch sidearm. Although my sidearm is not as plumb as I'd like it to be, I still was able to lock onto the satellites rather quickly (less than 2 mins).. The hardest bird to catch was of course 119. It wasn't difficult but it took a bit more aim to grab ahold of it. I found that when I locked onto the 101 bird, I had to pull the dish slightly to the left, and presto, there was 119. And like the other guys stated, the 119 signal is weaker than the 101 signal..


To me the absolute worst problem I encountered during the whole oval dish upgrade was building the darned thing.. Geez, talk about a hardware nightmare! And the instructions included with the 8900 dish were less than helpful. I mostly had to guess my way thru the construction process, making several mistakes along the way... Not a lot of fun!


Good luck with your oval dish installation. It really isn't hard at all to make it work once constructed, just a little patience, a reasonably plumb mount.. and a slow, steady hand.


Regards,

Steve
 

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I wanted to use just the oval dish, but unfortunately after a few days and many many frustrating hours, I realized there was a line of site problem. You really need a wide line of sight to pick up both satellites from the one oval dish. I finally went with two dishes using the oval for the 101 and the round for the 119. I am glad I did. I'm getting low 90's on the 101 and high 80's on the 119.


I believe ultimately this is the best way to go. Not the cheapest, but as far as picking up a good strong signal for both satellites it is. Then you can run the lnb from the round dish into the multiswitch on the 101.


[This message has been edited by hockeynut (edited 05-21-2001).]
 

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Hookem,

The answer to your question is EVERYONE whose dish location has a clear line of sight to the satelites.

The oval dish works. One might get higher numbers with two round dishes if one has some kind of siting problem but the oval dish, installed carefully, works well. The difficulty is the fact that one is sort of working in three dimensions with the oval dish and the setup is a bit more critical. I have set up three ovals and three round dishes. When working with a friend who, unlike me, actually knows how to plumb and level things the oval dish was laughably easy. Art
 

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my line of site isn't perfect, so i have 2 18" dishes. i have 4 receivers, but only one needs the 119 (HDTV) feed, so i have that 18" feed just the one set tehe 119 feed..


it works, so i'm happy.
 

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I also haven't had a problem picking up both birds with the same dish. The signal strength for both Sats are in the 80s. The real trick seems to be adjusting the Tilt correctly.


James
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for your help, although describing the finding of of both satellites as "laughably easy" would not do justice to the time I had this weekend trying to find either one. My problem, I guess, is finding the right tilt. I really can't go by the coordinates provided by my receiver, because the azimuth and altitude they gave me were ridiculously off (i.e. azimuth was off by 20 degrees and altitude by 6-8 degrees). Ideas?
 

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I would do a search on 119 in the forum and see all the nightmares evidenced.


119 was a problem for me because of look angle to the oval mount (101 coming in crystal has nothing to do with getting both to work).


It took a signal meter (worth the $60 for as little as I use it) and more dishes.


I hit 61.5, 101, 110, 119 with 3 dishes. 119 on the 8900 was by far the worst experience (I use it just for 101 now).


Tim
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by skoone1:
To me the absolute worst problem I encountered during the whole oval dish upgrade was building the darned thing.. Geez, talk about a hardware nightmare! And the instructions included with the 8900 dish were less than helpful. I mostly had to guess my way thru the construction process, making several mistakes along the way... Not a lot of fun!
My 24" dish is the Sony SAN-24MD and the instructions that came with it were very straightforward. There is a lot of hardware and assembly, but everything was described perfectly, including a complete actual size illustrated hardware list. I just followed the instructions step by step and everything went together perfectly.



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Tom


Sony SAT-T60 DirecTc>ic>Vc>oc> w/2.0.1

Sony SAN-24MD 24" elliptical dish
 

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You might find this silly, but to install a dish I first install a mounting board which is perfectly level, then I scribe a large circle on the mounting board. Then with coordinates and compass in hand I drew a line for each satellite through the circle. Then I mounted the mast making sure it was also plumb. I then adjusted the dish tilt and elevation as described in the manual/onscreen coordinates. I installed the dish on the mast and installed the cables and LNB's. With the dish mounted I used the lines on the mounting board to get me tracking the satellites. It worked very slick. Now a few months later I spent a couple more hours tweaking the Tilt, elevation and azimuth to peak both for optimum signal strength. I have 101 in the high 80s to the mid 90s and on 119 the signal is 70 to 82 depending on the transponder.


You can do it. Patience is the key, and if you are like me you don't have a lot of it. Sometimes I do a A.J. Foyt impression by hurling a Craftsman 7/16 wrench. They have a lifetime guarantee you know.



Good luck


Rick


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RJW
 

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To get accurate azimuth/elevation numbers, go to http://www.dbsforums.com/azel.html . You'll have to average the values from 101 and 119, and you'll have to account for the difference between true north and magnetic north (see the link for details). It won't help at all with the skew, though.


Bob


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It is no surprise that some folks will experience difficulty with an eliptical dish. As Tim points out, there are geographic considerations. There is also the very important fact that such dishes are a compromise. They are generally parabolic in the elevation plane and circular in the azimuth plane (or at least part thereof). Better reception characteristics for one bird is traded for the ability to receive both birds simultaneously.


If you are already close to your FEC floor using a paraboloid (or would be if pointing it at the new bird), you could experience reception issues (transient or constant) with such an eliptical dish. Dual paraboloids are very helpful for those on the fringe of the boresite.

http://www.atci.net/webgraphics/ATCi...na_Picture.JPG

Here is a picture of my eliptical dish. It's about 5M tall. It has excellent reception characteristics on C band across the entire arc. Up to 35 birds can be simultaneously observed. I wanted to get the 7M model, but my wife has only so much tolerance for my shenanigans. Sometimes you just need bigger, bolder gear http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/wink.gif


This is, of course, a joke. However, it is a very good example of the dish we have been discussing on a much larger scale. It will have the same reception characteristic challenges if it is made too small for the frequencies desired or its geographic proximity to the desired boresites is poor. My real dish farm can be see at my website.



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[This message has been edited by Man E (edited 05-24-2001).]
 
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