Hand Crank

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RT-Cat

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This new installation with my old Bud is getting interesting. Since it will only be adjusted between 97 and 103 and 90% of the time in one place, I do not see the need for an actuator, controller, and all the wires needed. So, thinking of building a hand crank I also thought of just looking at what one would cost. An hour of internet searching and they just do not exist.
So does anyone know of a site that sells them or have one in your "stuff" pile you would like to get rid of?
 

phlatwound

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No pics but I saw one that was made from a tongue jack off a bumper hitch-type trailer.

Not much adjustment range but it sounds like you don't need a whole lot.
 

RT-Cat

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Harbor Freight has the cranks starting at $25. Sign up for the mobile app and get 20% off or text "TOOLS" to 222-377
Gee, I was just there on Tuesday. Store is 56 miles from me but 95% is freeway.
The tongue jack idea is interesting. Never gave that a thought.
I looked up a good stainless threaded rod and the price gave me a shock. Jack is looking like a good direction.
 

Magic Static

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I don't know I would give up automation, can you say "below zero" or "wind chill" Does a "well diggers' *ss" ring a bell? ;) LOL Yes I live up north. Glacier Park is close. :)
 

RT-Cat

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Yup, it gets dam cold here also in Michigan. But as stated, I don't think this would be moved very often.
I just hope the weather holds long enough to get it done along with having to climb up and replace my OTA TV antenna. I don't work well in the cold.
 

Titanium

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Before motorized linear jack actuators, moveable dishes were either tongue jacks or a bar/sleeve with locking bolt. The tube or bar would be marked so the dish could be moved to position without referencing the receiver's signal meter.

I remember one old-timer who still did this up until he passed about 10 years ago. When I suggested that we upgrade and install a motor, he replied that it was the only exercise he got... LOL!

I did put a cheapo analog meter inline at the dish, so he could "fine-tune" when we added MPEG2 in 2000.
 

KE4EST

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I once knew a guy that did the same. He took a hacksaw and made marks in the thread where the birds were.
 

bpalone

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Talking about the old days, when I had the homemade Spherical antenna/reflector, I had stakes in the ground for where to place the tripod that held the LNA, Feedhorn and Down converter. Then had tape measurements for how high the mount needed to be for each satellite along with an angle for the tilt of the feed assembly. The good old Analog days, even had the old home built Taylor Howard receiver.

Just a decent sized piece of all thread of sufficient length would work. Would just need to allow one end to rotate and the other to drive a nut. Then figure out how to attach to the mount points on the dish and fabricate a handle to turn it all with. Yes the all thread will want to rust, but keep coated with lubricant such as WD40 and it shouldn't freeze up on you. One dish I had, came with just such an arrangement, they had gimble cage for mounting to antenna (not sure that is right term, but hope you get the idea).
 

RT-Cat

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Just a decent sized piece of all thread of sufficient length would work. Would just need to allow one end to rotate and the other to drive a nut. Then figure out how to attach to the mount points on the dish and fabricate a handle to turn it all with...........
When I woke up this morning an hour and fifteen minutes before the alarm would do its job, I was in bed designing just about what you described. A non stainless rod would keep the price down to a reasonable amount. With a little amount of lube it should last as long as I am going to.
Ran the coax to the post today. Sure happy I put that plastic pipe in the driveway before I had it paved several years ago.
Picture shows the pipe perfectly plum.100_0629.JPG:eeek
 

RT-Cat

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After designing a crank and checking costs at the hardware store, it was better to order a trailer jack from Amazon Prime.
 

bpalone

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Yes,many times, in fact most all of the time, mass production is cheaper. Assume you are going to salvage part of an old actuator for the tube mount portion and fabricate something for the dish end. I saw many that were sold that used that type of manual actuator.
 

RT-Cat

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I have always been able to cobble up something for what ever I am working on. Will know more late Wednesday when UPS delivers the last box on the truck very late in the day. That will be the jack.
 
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RT-Cat

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It was a very nice day today in Michigan and I spent the day discussing with this installation on why it should work. After many hours of adjusting and words of wisdom, I did get it working, sort of. I am not going to move this often or very far. 97 to 103 is about the max. I can pick up what I want on 97, 99, and 103. For some unknown reason nothing will show up on 101. Don't know why. Any ideas?
 

bpalone

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Just first thoughts, as you know what you're doing. Receiver settings or Skew? We have all been known to have a few of those Ah Sh*t moments from time to time. Can you see further west? If so, might want to check if it continues to track good, besides you might want 107 this fall and early winter.
 

RT-Cat

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Well, receiver is OK. As for skew since I can get 97 and most in between to 125, I would not think it would/could be off. I will give it a little wiggle in a few days when I get some time.
As for 107, I wonder what will happen there......:shh
 

Cham

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Maybe you can get 6 deg seperation using two LNBFs (multi-feed)? No moving parts...
 

turbosat

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Back when I first got the Hits2Home receiver I had a spare 7.5dish that wasn't being used, and tried it out for that service. Worked fine for 3-4yrs that I needed it, but I only had one crank also, and was using it on another 'parked' dish. I just took my old traxis 3500 to the dish, got the dish tracking by hand and found 101west. Propped the dish in place with a cedar pole, took a flat piece of steel and marked the bolt holes out that matched the distance from the holes on the dish's ring.
That worked very well and kept the dish in place =don't see why you couldn't mark more than one position on it though, drill the holes out and move it when
needed. Very cheap solution for me!
 

RT-Cat

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As for more than one LNB, heck, I have enough trouble with one. I will let the pros make those multi setup.
When it comes to moving this set up I can set the channel on the receiver and go out to the dish and crank and see the picture appear through the front window. With a small pair of binoculars, I can see the quality on the TV. So I really don't need to make any marking at the dish site.
It works......
 
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