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Inexpensive "walking the roof" setup?

1142 Views 7 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  arxaw
I installed my CM4228. I'm happy, but there's room for improvement. I've been reading about "walking the roof" with ... usually a spectrum analyzer .... yeah... I think I have one of those in my "gadgets and geeky stuff" box. No.... I don't... ok so seriously, is there an inexpensive way to walk the roof looking for possible hot spots for reception? I can't see myself parading up and down my roof carrying the CM4228 on a mast unless maybe for the delight of the neighbors needing a good giggle.

Or is that what I should be doing? I'd probably need a 75' length of RG6 to even attempt that.

I gues I'm asking if there's a lightweight way to do this. Something I can haul up a ladder. I think I have a little 13" TV somewhere. Could I just haul that up on the roof and use ANY uhf antenna to look for hotspots?
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good luck.

start with placement along the roof line with the antenna on a tripod. drag and stop every 5-10 ft. make sure the antenna is always faced in the same direction. look at pictures/signal. step away from the antenna since touch and close proximity of your body will affect signal. once you find the best spot along the roof try experimenting with height. go for the best compromise.

your idea of farthest away from the trees is a good start.

did you ever try weighing a dog on a bathroom scale. this exercise is worse.

if the cm 4228 is a lost cause try something different...91xg.

sounds like you will need a rotor unfortunately.
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Rick! Dude.... you're EVERYWHERE! hehehhe...

I've done that "weight the dog using a bathroom scale" thing. Was easy when she was a pup. Now she's older (and so am I) and it ain't easy any more.

This is sounding like a project. I don't have a tripod and I don't have enough cable. The 4228 is not a lost cause by any means. I will manually swing it around towards Toronto tonight and I'll be watching the Sabres vs Senators game in HD on 20.1 (CBLT CBC ....maps to 5.1) If I want to get just the Buffalo locals, then it's actually doing pretty well right where it is. But no matter which way I point it is a compromise and at least ONE station is marginal. Also, the proximity of the trees really shows up when it's breezy. I'm hoping if I get farther away from them it will have less of an affect. So it's *good* now.... but a minor improvement would make it *really* good.

The whole "walking the roof" thing is because I don't think it would be wise to just start indiscriminately MOVING the antenna without having some basis or reason for doing so. I mean, if I get an indication that moving it 25 feet farther away from teh trees will have a positive affect on the signal fluctuation I get when it's breezy... that's worth moving it right there. As long as I don't LOSE anything. Or if that spot farther away has a good effect on the breezy trees syndrome AND it happens to be a better signal area...then I would defiitely move it.

I'm just not ready to dump a bunch of money into this yet. At least not until I get it working reliably enough that I can get the wife interested in choosing OTA HD over the satellite equivalent local.
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trees are definately a royal pain in the ass.

I ended up chucking the cm4228 off the roof and turned it into a corner reflector (when it hit the ground).

replaced the cm4228 23 years ago with a wade combo then an hd8200p in the early 90's. revisited the cm 4228 last year with the same results (and having difficulty getting rid of it). settled on the 91xg for now.

the stuff you are dealing with was one of the reasons we could not wait for cable/sat in the area years ago.
yeah... unfortunately I have had SUCH a bad experience with cable out here where I live, that I absolutely refuse to try them again. The change from Adelphia Niagara to TWC just means a new name on a still-awful infrastructure. ...sorry.... ranting...

The 91XG solved your tree problems? That's interesting ....

But for right now I have to see if I can get the 4228 to work. If it doesn't then it might get replaced, but I'm also learning while I do this. Learning is a good thing

I am going to go take a look at the 91XG online right now though... just to be prepared
(don't tell my wife)
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I just went through the exercise again. this time adding ch 56 with a jointenna pointing toward the trees.

the station was 8 miles away 5000kw. you would figure cake...no problem.

started with a double bowtie, then a rs u75r, and stuck the cm4228 up there for the heck of it. had the signal fluctuations.

when I turned the hd8200p and 91 xg around the signal was tamed. so I settled with a 43xg.

since the signal can fluctuate as much as 10 db or more...the most directional, best front to back, high gain sucker tames the situation helps.

the rotor helps ...the "honey how does it look" routine gets old after awile for you and the wife.
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I can see where I am probably more likely to get a rotor next rather than another antenna. Right now I have to get the ladder, get up on the roof, lay down on the peak and loosen the clamps on the (2) wall mounts I have holding the mast at the peak, turn the antenna where I THINK it should be pointing, tighten things up, get off roof, put ladder away.

oh and if there's any checking to do.... I'm running up and down the ladder and doing it myself.

A rotor just sounds easier.

Originally Posted by yardbird /forum/post/0

...A rotor just sounds easier.

It is easier.

Much easier.
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