10-foot C-band dish (1 Viewer)

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Brct203

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Dec 24, 2016
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I had been looking at getting a C-Band dish for a little while, and on Friday, fellow forum member and friend Dfecarter told me that he had spotted one, and the location was about a half a mile from my house! I had driven by it several time and somehow had missed it. The dish had pine needles and leaves piled up in the bottom part, so it was likely that it was not in use. So yesterday morning I went and knocked on the door, and asked if they were interested in getting rid of it. This was my lucky day, the guy was very nice and was happy to get rid of it, on the condition that I also remove the post. Fair enough... less that 2 hours later I was back with a ladder and some tools and got started.
The dish is a Winegard 10'. It has a Polarotor with a Norsat C-Band LNB. No Ku. The actuator is a 24" ball screw Thomson-Saginaw.
I was also able to salvage about 100 feet of ribbon cable (2 coax, actuator cable and servo cable), with a bit of frayed insulation in one spot, thankfully not on the coax side

Everything is in decent condition, considering it's about 25 years old. The housing of the actuator is a bit rusted but the motor works - I have not tested the sensor yet. The Polarotor has some corrosion and peeling paint. But I might end up using my Titanium C1W-PLL instead anyway.

However, one mesh panel had gotten in a struggle with a pine branch and as usual, the branch won... It's not torn, but it definitely took a beating. Unfortunately on that dish the panels are probably inserted before the outer rim is welded, as it's in a channel on 3 sides (2 ribs and the outer rim) - see attached pictures.

What would you suggest? it seems that at a minimum I need to be able to take the panel out and flatten then part that got damaged and put it back in

I'm not sure of the exact model of the dish... From what i have found by looking at pictures it could be a Pinnacle or a Quadstar. If anyone can regognise it from the pictures and point me to a manual, that would be awesome. I looked at the Winegard Quadstar 7.5' manual posted in the forum, and it looks very similar, other than the size. I just need a bit of guidance on making sure i'm reassembling it correctly.

I'm open to all comments and suggestions from those of you who have done BUD rescue before...

Thanks again Dfecarter for the help in finding this dish!
 

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waylew

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could be a Pinnacle or a Quadstar
Definitely not a Pinnacle,Pinnacles are perforated aluminum not mesh.
You should be able to sufficiently straighten the mesh out ,remove it from the frame and on a flat surface,use a piece of 2x4/rolling pin/rubber mallet/whatever,and beat it back in to submission.:biggrin
 
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KE4EST

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Nice find!
Yes, for sure, just carefully removed the damaged section and beat it back to where it needs to be and put it back in.
I have done this a couple of times myself and with a little patience works good.
 
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Jason S

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Aug 9, 2014
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Nice Winegard find! Looks like a Quadstar.

I got a Winegard Quadstar last year with several panels popped out. Had to remove the screws holding the panel, used a flat head screwdriver to open the channels up slightly, then push panel up out from outer ring channel and slide panel out. On my dish, there were areas of excess paint that kept the panel from sliding. Used the putty knife to slide between the mesh and the frame to break the paint bond. This may be of interest: Winegard for possible rescue

To straighten the panel out, laid the panel on smooth, concrete and used a rubber mallet to tap it back into shape. A 2" diameter pipe was like a rolling pin to further smooth out the panel. Once straight, reinsert panel into frame.

As many of the panels on mine had sizeable hail dents, I turned the panels over and installed into the frame with original face side to the back. Once back in the frame and secured with screws, used a small propane torch to heat/shrink around the hail dings to pull them out. Working the hail dents by hand and shrinking got most of the dents out. Probably not a necessary step, but thought I'd try to get the mesh back as straight as possible.

One of the last things I got done was to put new bushings on the polar mount. This is also shown in the thread linked above.
 
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Brct203

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Jason, thank you very much for the info! This is exactly what I have in mind. Actually i thought about the putty knife just an hour ago and tried it and it seems to work. The mesh was indeed stuck in paint along the outer ring. Now I still need to open the channels a bit more.

Garyd also pointed out the tendency of those dishes to have some play in the bearing/bushings and sure enough, this mount has some play in the lower bushing or bearing. I will take a look, and use your posts as a guide. BTW, where did you find replacement bushings?
 

Jason S

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Brct203, you're welcome! Happy to help!

The local True-Value hardware store had the bushings.
The info I got off the box is 1 1/8" bronze sleeve bearings part no. 64294-M . They were in the area that had all the specialty fasteners (i.e., metric stainless screws, small motor brushes, etc).
The other parts I used were 3/4 x 18 gauge machine repair bushings. I think regular washers ought to work fine too.
 

Brct203

Thread Starter
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Dec 24, 2016
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Connecticut
The local True-Value hardware store had the bushings.
The info I got off the box is 1 1/8" bronze sleeve bearings part no. 64294-M . They were in the area that had all the specialty fasteners (i.e., metric stainless screws, small motor brushes, etc).
The other parts I used were 3/4 x 18 gauge machine repair bushings. I think regular washers ought to work fine too.

Thanks for the details!

BTW I was able to remove the damaged mesh panel and roll it with a piece of 3" ABS pipe. Not perfect yet - still a bit wavy but better than it was. I will see if i can improve it a bit with the rubber mallet
 
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Javaman

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Apr 11, 2008
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CT, USA
Great find. I really like reading the posts of these old dish discoveries & rescues.

Any unexpected problems taking it apart?
How heavy are each of those quarter sections? Did you cut the pole or dig it up?
 
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Brct203

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Any unexpected problems taking it apart?
How heavy are each of those quarter sections? Did you cut the pole or dig it up?

No unexpected problems... I started by removing the LNB and feed assembly, then the support arms, leaving the top one attached to the rim of the dish as I could not reach that high. Then removed the center plate, taking advantage of the damaged mesh panel to get one arm through it. Those bolts game me quite a workout but came off intact. Then started removing the bolts that hold the panels together and to the mount, removing the lowest panel first, then the second lowest. However I could not reach the highest bolts for the top 2 panels, but could reach those holding those panels to the mount. So I took down the top 2 panels in one shot. Not too heavy, but quite awkward to handle while on top of a ladder. anyway, i was able to get one end on the ground and rest them against the pole and then took them apart. At that point there was still the mount and the actuator. I removed the actuator (quite heavy), and then the mount was certainly the heaviest part, and also awkward as you don't want it to pinch your fingers...

As for the pole, I loosened the dirt around the concrete, and the next morning, the homeowner attached a chain to it and pulled it down with his Jeep. I was a bit worried it would bend the pole but no, it came down nicely. I was then able to drill holes in the concrete, chisel it between the holes enough to insert a wood-splitting wedge, and go at it with a sledgehammer. Took me about an hour but was able to take it all off and salvage the pole for reuse. 9-foot long, 3.5 inch pipe filled with concrete. I had to get a bit creative to bring it home in my car without breaking the car or my back...

You were asking about the weight of each quarter section of the reflector... to be honest I don't know but definitely not a problem. I would guess less than 20 lbs each. Maybe even less than 10 lbs

Today I was able to put the mesh panel back in, it's still a bit wavy though.
 

Brct203

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Dec 24, 2016
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Connecticut
Quick update on this project... I took apart the mount, and cleaned it, applied some anti-rust treatment (Loctite) and repainted, using the Duplicolor Machinery Gray DA 1612 that Jason S had mentioned in the linked thread. It is indeed a very close match with the original paint color. I also repainted the tube of the actuator as it was rusted. I also tested the actuator sensor and it appears to be working fine.

On the mount I replaced the lower bronze bushing , which slightly reduced the play. I found the exact same as the old one at Lowes. Part # 1772 (described as a washer on the website!).

I'm still working on setting up the pole. I think I found a decent spot, which would allow line-of-sight view from about 20 or 22W to around 110W. That is, after I take down some large branches. And I don't want to take down those branches with a dish under them, so the dish will wait until I get the branches taken care of.

I said earlier that the pole was 9ft long. That was incorrect. It is 12-feet long, and was set at only 32 inches deep, which I think is above frost line here in CT.


IMG_2390.JPG IMG_2391.JPG
 

KE4EST

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Nice work! Yes, I would try and go deeper than 32 inches.
Too bad you can't go any further west than 110W, but you will still have plenty to watch!
 

Brct203

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Dec 24, 2016
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Connecticut
Nice work! Yes, I would try and go deeper than 32 inches.
Too bad you can't go any further west than 110W, but you will still have plenty to watch!

Thanks! Yes i'll try to dig to 42 inches if possible. I just hope there no large boulder in the ground there.

There's one spot which would give visibility further West (to 127, maybe 131W), but then would be limited to the east to around 90 or 95W and would be right in front of the living room large windows. So while i might be able to do some testing there, it is not an option for a permanent setup.
 

wvman

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Sep 19, 2014
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I had been looking at getting a C-Band dish for a little while, and on Friday, fellow forum member and friend Dfecarter told me that he had spotted one, and the location was about a half a mile from my house! I had driven by it several time and somehow had missed it. The dish had pine needles and leaves piled up in the bottom part, so it was likely that it was not in use. So yesterday morning I went and knocked on the door, and asked if they were interested in getting rid of it. This was my lucky day, the guy was very nice and was happy to get rid of it, on the condition that I also remove the post. Fair enough... less that 2 hours later I was back with a ladder and some tools and got started.
The dish is a Winegard 10'. It has a Polarotor with a Norsat C-Band LNB. No Ku. The actuator is a 24" ball screw Thomson-Saginaw.
I was also able to salvage about 100 feet of ribbon cable (2 coax, actuator cable and servo cable), with a bit of frayed insulation in one spot, thankfully not on the coax side

Everything is in decent condition, considering it's about 25 years old. The housing of the actuator is a bit rusted but the motor works - I have not tested the sensor yet. The Polarotor has some corrosion and peeling paint. But I might end up using my Titanium C1W-PLL instead anyway.

However, one mesh panel had gotten in a struggle with a pine branch and as usual, the branch won... It's not torn, but it definitely took a beating. Unfortunately on that dish the panels are probably inserted before the outer rim is welded, as it's in a channel on 3 sides (2 ribs and the outer rim) - see attached pictures.

What would you suggest? it seems that at a minimum I need to be able to take the panel out and flatten then part that got damaged and put it back in

I'm not sure of the exact model of the dish... From what i have found by looking at pictures it could be a Pinnacle or a Quadstar. If anyone can regognise it from the pictures and point me to a manual, that would be awesome. I looked at the Winegard Quadstar 7.5' manual posted in the forum, and it looks very similar, other than the size. I just need a bit of guidance on making sure i'm reassembling it correctly.

I'm open to all comments and suggestions from those of you who have done BUD rescue before...

Thanks again Dfecarter for the help in finding this dish!

You are correct in assuming the screen was installed before the final piece around the outer edge of the panel was installed. I have a 7 1/2 foot Unimesh that has two outer segments with the screen pulled out. The other three panels are perfect. The damage was done by the guy that helped me load it on the truck. They were two dishes at the location. One on the pole, and the other lying on ground. It had grass growing up through the screen, and before I could stop him, he lifted it up pulling the screen out of the track.

Luckily, I located another dish just like it with two damaged quarters, and I took one of the good panels and fixed the other one. When you find a dish, it's best to number the panels and mark which saddle it sat in when you disassemble it, that way it goes back together as it was. It's just a precautionary measure, and it's not usually a serious problem if you didn't as long as it goes back together without being warped.

If there's one of those dishes in your area, there's a good chance there's another. If nothing else, keep it for parts for a later find.
 
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Brct203

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Well, some time has good by, and this project has not progressed a lot. I just recently took down the main branch that was blocking the LOS to much or the arc, still have a trim of few minor branches (minor, as in not very thick, but still hard to reach...) Once that's done I will double and triple check the location, and start digging...

In the meantime I have been looking a bit at the hardware. So I have the dish, the pole, a 24" Saginaw actuator. I have a new Amiko mini HD RE receiver. I have a Titanium C1W-PLL, and also a couple salvaged (and coroded) polarotor and corotors. The missing element is the positionner. The ASC-1 is very appealing. The V-Box is less appealing but also costs about a third of the ASC-1.

So while I try to make a decision on that part, I'd like to get started with a more manual solution... A friend gave me a nice-but-obsolete Drake ESR-2000 XT Plus. Looks like it was never even used. I figured that I could use it to drive the dish, and the servo if I decide to use one of the old feeds.

Would that work? It seems that the Drake has some type of signal peeking algorithm, that made a lot of sense back when it could actually get feedback from its reception of analog transponders. But would it allow me to simply manually fine tune the position based on what i'm seeing on the Amiko and store the position? Or would it keep searching for a signal that it won't find? I don't have a manual for the Drake, and was not able to find any online (if anyone has a pdf, that would be great!)

Also, I am confused by the connections in the back of the Drake (see attached picture). I'm assuming that M1 and M2 go to the motor wires. But then there's only one wire for the sensor?? As far as I know, all actuators have either 2 (reed) or 3 (optical or hall) wires for the sensor. So where do I connect the other wire? to GND?
 

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Magic Static

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Your Actuator has a magnet wheel on it, so I assume it's a two wire sensor. One wire to the "Sensor" terminal and the other to "Ground' seems logical.
 
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