Hand shake or signed paper? (1 Viewer)

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Thread Starter
"My person-well trained"
Pub Member / Supporter
May 30, 2011
Cold, Cold,Michigan USA
With all the dish find and removal stories here on the site, it brings up a question. After you have found a great dish, talked with the owner, discussed what you were going to do, and made a "deal", do any of you write it all down and have the dish owner sign it? With so many people ready to jump on a lawsuit for sneezing on their sidewalk as you walk by, it just seems like a good thing to do. Maybe in the "old days" a hand shake covered everything, not any more. There is going to be someone out there that states when you are ready to leave, " You did not do this, you did not do that." Next the lawyers get into the act. When that happens the back ache from removing the dish ends up being a small issue.:eek:


Retired and Loving it !
Pub Member / Supporter
When I got my 8 footer from the guy, I told him I was only taking the Dish and leaving the Pole.
After I got it loaded on the trailer,I honked the Horn waved Goodbye...........
He didn't know who I was (name) nor where I lived....so there was No Trail to follow ! LOL


"On the Air" in MI
Pub Member / Supporter
Oct 13, 2007
West Central Michigan
Most people I talk to just want the dish "gone!" I explain what we're going to do, and we do it, DONE! Never have had an issue!


SatelliteGuys Guru
Sep 1, 2011
Blind River Ontario
Well when the dish owner not only present but helping you take it down and put it in the truck. I think you are pretty save. When I take a dish down I take it apart piece by piece and totally refurbish it before putting it back up. This usually takes 2-3 hours. If the owner has taken no action in 2-3 hours to stop you I don't think a lawyer is going to do to much.


SatelliteGuys Pro
Jul 13, 2008
Never tried either.

Last dish I got I told the elderly woman in August I'd be back sometime late fall and take it down, and remove the pole below the ground. I never called her back to confirm, just showed up early one morning and did the deed. No handshake, no contract. Works well with some people.

I do recall that others have said they had dishes picked out that walked away to someone else sometime between the time they inquired and the time they showed up with their wrenches. Scavenger beware. :eek:


SatelliteGuys Pro
Pub Member / Supporter
Lifetime Supporter
Sep 11, 2005
Canby, Oregon
If something goes wrong, say damage to the donor's property, a simple written contract won't stop them from suing you. If you are uncomfortable with the donor and a hand shake deal - Run Forest Run!
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The No Pain Train
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
None Your Business
Anytime I have removed a Primestar dish for someone I always leave the feet on the roof so there is no damage done
2 of the P* dishes I got were on abandoned lots so no one was around
Any bigger dish I got from members here on the board so I'm not worried :)


SatelliteGuys Master
Sep 22, 2005
L.A., Calif.
if you can be friendly with strangers, they become your friends

I had a new neighbor take a small dish off his roof himself and give it to me.
That was just after he moved in. I asked, and he brought it over.
It was to be replaced with a DirecTV dish.

For the two BUDs, the owners helped me disassemble the dishes.
During the course of removal, I'd say we became friendly.
Between initial meeting and removal, I made every effort to keep in touch, visit a few times to spray with PB Blaster, and plan the move.
We discussed what we were going to do and how we were going to leave the yard.
With the Birdview, the owner wanted the broken up cement cleaned up and the hole refilled back to original.
Since he worked with us, we did a pretty good job.

For the perforated BUD, we agreed with the owner we were going to cut off his 9' of pole just above the concrete, so there was no surprise.
And there was no hole to refill, nor cement chips all over his yard.

Both owners were happy to pull out their long runs of coax, and hand it over, along with their old analog receivers.
I showed up with a flat-bed truck, tools, a buddy, and tie-down straps, so we looked like we knew what we were doing. :)
All in all, I'd say both were pretty happy with getting the old dishes hauled away.


SatelliteGuys Pro
Dec 22, 2006
ive salvaged like 10 primestar dishes.... going from owner help to getting the dish myself... never had one single problem & never had a contract.... one owner even brought a 40x43 by my house because it didnt fit in the car


SatelliteGuys Master
Sep 30, 2006
Great High Plains
I'm going to be getting a 7 1/2 ft Winegard mesh one in a few days. I've told the owner I will take down the dish and dig around the pole to the concrete and cut it off there. That I wouldn't dig up all the concrete and make a big hole. I think I may have installed it for him about 20 yrs ago. I'm planning on slab mount anyway so won't need the part that is under the ground.
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SatelliteGuys Pro
I saw a dish in a back yard that was pointed in a very strange direction, so I stopped and asked the guy if he was still using it. He said that he wasn't, and I asked if he would like to see it "gone." He asked how much I was going to charge him, and I explained that the dish would be payment enough.

Phottoette and I went over to his house the day he told me I could take it out, he would be "at work" that day, so we worked for about two hours and got everything out, including the pole.

A week or so later I made a point of stopping to see him where he worked, and he asked me if I was ready to take the thing out of his yard. We did such a good job of leveling what had been a hole in the ground after removing the pole and putting the broken concrete back into the hole that he hadn't even noticed the dish was gone.

HA, by THAT time, it was up and running in MY yard.

We all had a good laugh over that one.


Lone Gunman

SatelliteGuys Pro
Mar 19, 2010
I do recall that others have said they had dishes picked out that walked away to someone else sometime between the time they inquired and the time they showed up with their wrenches. Scavenger beware. :eek:

YEAH, ONE OF THOSE WOULD BE ME!! I had made 3 each 90 mile round trips to get that 12ft Conifer dish that had been "given" to me and had actually take the dish off the mount and had it in two pieces when weather went south and I then decided to wait until spring to finish the job. So I called the guy back this spring and asked whether the dish was still there and he said yes, it was waiting for me. So a couple of weeks later I got two friends together to get that dish and mount only to find it gone when I got there??? Talk about pissed???!!! So I came home empty handed and now only have the button hook and the VonWeise mover to show for my efforts. (better than nothing I guess) So I call the guy when I got home and questioned where my dish was and he got asinine so I gave the bastage a piece of my mind and hung up on him!

My advice? I'd pay something for it even if it's free, ie, $20 or something like that and I'd get a bill of sale when I did that. That way you have something to prove it's yours and if you wind up dealing with an a$$hole like I did, you would probably be more likely to have a dish rather than a promise that went south!
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SatelliteGuys Pro
Jun 5, 2010
Vernon, BC
Where I live in farm country, if you asked a person to sign a paper, it would be such a foreign question that they would not understand it or why one would ask such a strange question. Once they did understand the question, they would probably throw you off the farm. A handshake is solid here.


SatelliteGuys Pro
Aug 29, 2007
I guess it really comes down to what part of the country you live in as here in Iowa I've never had a hand shake or anything other than thier word when asking if I could have it, and I gotten around 20 dishes so far.
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