OTA Rotors: Channel Master, Yaesu, Hy-Gain, AlfaSpid, Others - Page 5 - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums

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post #61 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-08-19, 08:36 PM
 
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It's great that your problem is solved, however, you may be in for more aggravation and a ruined rotor if you continue with 7' of mast.
I don't think they are meant to carry more than about 3' of mast.
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post #62 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-08-20, 11:34 AM
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Agreed, 7 feet is too much. 1 foot above the rotor is a good point to put it, so the 3 foot mast height timbo recommends is perfect for a CM4228.

If you're mounting a VHF/FM with the CM4228 on the same mast, put the VHF/FM at the 1 foot mark, then leave an empty 1 foot, then mount the CM4228 above it for a total of 5 feet. Tigerbangs has been using the 5 foot formula for VHF/FM & UHF antenna installs for years.
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post #63 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-08-20, 07:42 PM
 
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Rotator connections?

Hi,

I've got an antenna that I would like to start using again, It has been disconnected for a couple of years. I have a 5 wire cable coming in from the rotator,there is only 3 terminals on the selector switch. Is there anyway of telling which wire is for which terminal on the selector? The tower is old and I don't think I want to climb it just to check.

thanks

Dave
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post #64 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-08-21, 01:57 AM
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Do all the wires in the cable look the same, Dave? I'm wondering if the 5 wires are actually 3 for the rotor and the other 2 being the 300ohm TV signal downlead?
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post #65 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-08-21, 10:17 AM
 
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Replacing Rotor/Controller?

Greetings, OTA wizards - hopefully you can assist a newbie. I have read the FAQ's, installation tips, etc. on here but didn't quite find the answers to my (basic) questions so...

Here's the background: I have a cottage (more of a "shack") located at the northern end of Lake Scugog (north of Port Perry, southwest of Lindsay) with a TV antenna that was already there when I bought the cottage. I get decent TV reception already (meaning, CTV, CBC, TVO, a couple US stations) but only when the antenna is pointed in the right direction. The problem is the wind has a tendency to turn that sucker around (it's a old-style antenna, what I think you'd call regular)... and when it's facing north, I have to be a bit picky about what channels I'll watch. I found an old "dial type" controller in the garage that was there, and there was a 3-wire hookup in the cottage. I hooked it up and the best I could do was to get a "humming noise" from the rotor. My neighbour suggests that it could just be a blown transistor on the controller (this thing has a date of 1962 on it) but it looks like it would require sourcing and re-soldering if I were to replace it. Of course, he also suggested that it could be that the rotor's broken, too.

So, I got to thinking that I would just replace the rotor and controller - make it easier on myself than trying to fix something that's potentially older than me. I have confirmed that my antenna is in good condition, so it doesn't require replacing (and I don't need DTV anyway as my TV doesn't support).

Here are my basic questions:
  1. What's the best/cheapest solution for me? I saw that Radio Shack has the re-branded Channel Master rotors on sale for $89 again - but it comes with a dial-type rotor that I think I read isn't as good as the remote-style ones. $89 is in my budget range - but if there's something that's $20-40 more that is much higher recommended, I'm happy to take the advice. Note: Ideally I want to find something this week so I can install on Friday/Saturday of this upcoming weekend (see next question for applicability of last sentence).
  2. Is this a job that I can do myself? I'm a good DIY'er but damn scared of heights. I figured I can brave climing the antenna, hooking a safety hook on, and taking down the rotor/antenna, replacing it wouldn't be too hard. Is this realistic? Can it be done as a 1-man job? Or am I better to get it professionally done (in which case, recommendations for my area would be greatly appreciated).
  3. The wiring that's there looks like it's in good condition (I didn't see any cracks) but I'd assume it's pretty damn old too - I'm assuming I should replace at same time? Again, the 3-wire stuff I get from Radio Shack (aka CC) is good enough, correct?

Thanks in advance. If these questions have been answered in the past and I didn't find them, my apologies in advance.

Cheers,
Mike
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post #66 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-08-21, 01:07 PM
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Hi Mike, I would say that the best thing to do for peace of mind is take down the old rotor, wires, and controller box and replace them with new. Remote control boxes are nice to have, but in a cabin I can't imagine you'd be far away from a manual controller box, considering that with 100 feet of cable you could put it anywhere.

Does your inherited antenna have a UHF aerial on it, or is it just VHF? If its the latter, you might want to pick up a new combo antenna if UHF stations are available.

Lastly, as for heights, that's a dicey proposition with old masts. I've said it before and I'll say it again, taking down old OTA gear is one of the worst jobs out there! Wear at least a bicycle helmet and always use eye goggles and gloves.
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post #67 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-08-21, 02:32 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stampeder
Hi Mike, I would say that the best thing to do for peace of mind is take down the old rotor, wires, and controller box and replace them with new. Remote control boxes are nice to have, but in a cabin I can't imagine you'd be far away from a manual controller box, considering that with 100 feet of cable you could put it anywhere.
Thanks Stampeder and yes, you're right that it is a small TV setup anyway (20") so having to use a manual controller box doesn't bother me. Do I need to worry that they don't last as long (I read somewhere about moving parts = more failure rate)? If I decide to "upgrade" to a remote control box can I keep the rotor that I install or are they not compatible?

Quote:
Originally Posted by stampeder
Does your inherited antenna have a UHF aerial on it, or is it just VHF? If its the latter, you might want to pick up a new combo antenna if UHF stations are available.
This answer will likely show my newbie-ness. I think it has UHF aerial - I currently get UHF channels on the TV (when the wind points the antenna in the right direction) and the antenna itself has larger & smaller "spines" on it, which I'm assuming are VHF & UHF respectively. If it doesn't, I'm assuming I could always upgrade that later - if I am willing to dare climbing back up the mast again, correct?

Quote:
Originally Posted by stampeder
Lastly, as for heights, that's a dicey proposition with old masts. I've said it before and I'll say it again, taking down old OTA gear is one of the worst jobs out there! Wear at least a bicycle helmet and always use eye goggles and gloves.
You're not giving me that warm, fuzzy feeling I was hoping for with my fear of heights. Is this back-breaking work? How heavy is that top part of the antenna that the rotor attaches to? I just picture myself getting up there, loosening the old rotor and having the whole top part come crashing to the ground... any tips from old pros on what I should/shouldn't do (notwithstanding wearing helmet, gloves & goggles)?

And final question - for utter certainty of comprehension of your response - you'd suggest that the Radio Shack unit for $89 isn't a bad option? I mean, I'd be getting a half-decent, relatively-sound product if I buy that?
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post #68 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-08-21, 03:58 PM
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Have a look in the OTA Forum Knowledge Base and FAQ to see pictures of UHF, VHF, and combo antennas. Chances are yours will look like one of them and you can confirm it with us.

The Source has a pretty good return policy and warranty so I wouldn't hesitate over worries of service life, etc. If you really want the remote control capability you can buy the Channel Master controller, which will operate the rotor just fine.

As far as taking down the old rotor, I'm not saying its an impossible task and in fact can be fairly quickly done... just be careful for your safety, especially if corroded particles are falling towards your eyes.
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post #69 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-08-24, 04:12 PM
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Nexxtech Rotor from The Source

Quote:
Originally Posted by gmark2000
The re-branded Channel Master rotors are on sale again for $89.99 at The Source (sale ends August 27th).

http://www.thesourcecc.com/estore/Pr...roduct=1501245
Here are the contents of the Nexxtech 1501245 Rotor package as purchased from The Source. They're actually not Channel Masters per se; they're made by Orbyx in China. I also purchased a 100 foot package of 3-conductor rotor cable since I was out. I ordered the rotor and cable from The Source's web page and had it delivered to my closest The Source store at no extra shipping cost.

The sticker shown at the lower right has peel-off channel numbers for the rotor face. Unfortunately the backing came all crumpled so several of the stickers are missing or damaged. I'm not worried about it. Apart from that, all else is fine.

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post #70 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-09-14, 02:06 PM
 
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Stampeder, have you been happy with this purchase?
I'm very close to having all the pieces of the OTA puzzle assembled and the rotor is the last item I need to purhase. This week I received my CM7777 and CM4228 so I'm almost there.
I stopped by The Source last night to take a peek at this unit, and have to admit I was a little disappointed when I saw that it wasn't the remote controled version.
I didn't purchase it, even though it is still on sale until the 24th for $89.
I'm hesitant because of the indoor control box.
My old CM9510 and two newer CM9510a indoor control boxes are all non-functional, owing to what I feel is a bad design. There is a small plastic piece inside under the spinning control knob that allows the two copper arms for each direction (clockwise & counter clockwise) to make contact and spin the dial in the appropriate direction.
It apperars that these contacts generate a substantial amount of heat, and all three of these little plastic pieces have melted and effectively been rendered useless as they no longer enable the copper arms to make contact.
Quite a fire hazzard really. You can smell the melting acrylic plastic as the dial is turning.
I just wondered if this Nexxtech unit has the same design?

Thanks,
Ham.Clan
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post #71 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-09-14, 02:15 PM
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As far as I can tell all the Nexxtech rotor parts are compatible with Channel Master rotor gear, but I agree that the Nexxtech manual controller is not cool, so I would recommend the CM unit with remote control.
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post #72 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-09-14, 02:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HDTV101 View Post
Remote Rotator Controller with Infrared Signal
$54.99
Model: 15-1213
Catalog #: 15-1213

http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...entPage=search
As HDTV101 pointed out, RadioShack in the US sells the "Remote Rotator Controller with Infrared Signal." You can always buy the rotor from The Source and use it for now and then on a vacation to the US pick up the Infrared Controller and install it later.
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post #73 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-09-14, 02:26 PM
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Good call on that Roger, but it looks like they're out of stock at the moment.
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post #74 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-09-14, 03:03 PM
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Improvements to the Channel master rotors

Channel Master made some improvements to their rotors to improve the performance in colder weather. Lets hope that they no longer freeze up when the temp get below 32'F.

This is how the new Channel Master rotors looks inside.



Visible improvements:
The motor is now mounted by 3 screws vs 2 for the older design.

The wires are now connected by push type connector.

More grease you can see it where the main bolt is.

Not a visible difference:
The black rubber seal is improved supossed to be better to prevent moisture from getting in.

The motor itself has more torque.

CM4228/9521/7775;F.RmJvc70FH96/8300HDPvr/Dish 612;B.Rm LC52LE810UN/8642HD;Study LG50PK550/Xbox360;
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post #75 of 1003 (permalink) Old 2006-09-14, 03:34 PM
 
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Just doing a little research and I found this interesting rotor from Eagle Aspen:
http://www.eagleaspen.com/products/products_1.php?id=90



Here's what they claim:

"Introducing the new Eagle Aspen single cable off air antenna rotator; model ROTR100. The days of having to run separate “3 conductor rotor wire” between the drive unit and the control unit are in the past. Pro Brand has developed the ROTR100 utilizing DiSEqC code that sends commands to control the drive unit along the same coaxial cable that brings the television signals from the off air antenna into the house. Optional pre-amplifier power can also be supplied via this same cable. Whether performing a new install or retrofitting an existing antenna system, the ROTR100 provides for a fast and easy installation. Additional features have been added making the entire system installer and user friendly:

One Cable carries off-air signals, rotator power, control & pre-amp power

Hall Sensor Control: The industry standard for satellite control is now applied to off-air position control. Unlike competitive units, this unit does not rely on timing. The Hall sensors count every motor revolution resulting is 2░ accuracy.

High Torque: 120 inch lbs. of mechanical torque to handle up to a 133” boom length.

Pre-amp Power: 18VDC at up to 80 ma. When a pre-amp is not used, this is automatically sensed and the pre-amp power is switched off.

Display & Control: The indoor controller features a 000░ to 450░ digital compass display. 1.25 total rotation (450░) to allow for easy pointing to stations that are either side of north. Several methods of antenna control are provided.
• Up/down through the digital compass display
• Direct Access to a location (e.g.180░ for south)
• 99 programmable memory locations, which can be assigned
the same number as the channel being received

Handheld IR Remote: Software codes available on most higher end universal remote controls"


Now this sounds like an advancement in the field ot rotator technology. The manual can be found here:
http://www.eagleaspen.com/admin/down...an/file_55.pdf

Next question is - is this compatible with the CM7777 preamp? From what I read it's only compatible with preamps with output voltage of +17 VDC at less than 50 mA. From what I've read, the CM7777 is +18 VDC.

Last edited by Ham.Clan; 2006-09-14 at 03:58 PM.
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