How long is too long?

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kspilot

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
May 8, 2010
46
0
KANSAS
About how long of a coax cable can I run from my satellite to the reciever before it starts to effect the signal and satellite motor function?
Also,whats the best way to bury the cable in the lawn,I have a nice fescue lawn and would rather not tear it up to much.
Thanks!
 
kingofku

kingofku

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 29, 2007
191
1
Riverside County, California
About how long of a coax cable can I run from my satellite to the receiver before it starts to effect the signal and satellite motor function?
Also,whats the best way to bury the cable in the lawn,I have a nice fescue lawn and would rather not tear it up to much.
Thanks!
Nominally the max length without any type of line amp is about 200'. As for burial of your cable, there are horizontal drills available, but that's way too expensive. You can use direct burial cable, but you'll still have to trench your lawn. Even with laying in conduit, you'll still have to trench the lawn. It can be done with the proper trenching shovel. Just make sure if you don't use conduit (PVC) to use direct burial cable or your standard PVC cable will deteriorate in no time. Remember, the lawn will grow back as long as you remove it in sections and don't hack it to bits.
 
K

kspilot

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
May 8, 2010
46
0
KANSAS
King!
Thanks for the reply!!
200ft is plenty,im only going 20ft from dish to the house then another 40ft to the tv so it should be ok without amplifcation.
I have a WS International dish,ws9120 hh motor and a sonicveiw PremierPro 360 coming tomorrow and can't wait!
This will be my first FTA.
 
M

Mr Tony

SatelliteGuys Pro
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
306
54
Mankato, MN
I have a motorized setup that is about 170 feet and it works perfect :)
 
B.J.

B.J.

SatelliteGuys Pro
Oct 15, 2008
2,029
1
Western Maine
King!
Thanks for the reply!!
200ft is plenty,im only going 20ft from dish to the house then another 40ft to the tv so it should be ok without amplifcation.
I have a WS International dish,ws9120 hh motor and a sonicveiw PremierPro 360 coming tomorrow and can't wait!
This will be my first FTA.
I have about a 250' run, and have never used an amp. I've tried them, but they didn't improve anything. I've been working on moving my dish out another 50-75' or so, but before doing that, I wanted to do some tests to make sure that I didn't degrade the signal too much, so today I took out a spool of about 75'-100' (not sure which) of coax, and inserted it between my motor and the LNBF. It did drop the signal quite a bit, but didn't hurt the quality all too much. But then, I decided to try my inline amp again. This time it finally helped. Brought the S/Q almost up to where it was at it's best before.
So anyway, my opinion is that up to 250' you don't need any amp, but if you get up in the 325-350' range, then yes, an amp will help.

I'm hoping to move my 3' dish up on top of a new garage we just built last fall. I think from there I should have a much better view of the sky, but I was afraid that the extra 75' might make things worse, but maybe not.
 
B

boom

SatelliteGuys Family
Apr 30, 2010
96
0
NJ
My motor specs claim it will only work for 80 feet or so, maybe that's to cover themselves, but it works nicely with a 150 foot run for me.
 
updatelee

updatelee

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jul 22, 2006
1,604
111
CFB Edmonton
Good quality coax is the key, especially with a motor as it really pushes the current draw. Get yourself some *good* quality RG6 there is alot of junk out there. Goto an electrical wholesale store that caters to business's not joe shmoe handyman. Use a solid copper core, not a copper plated one. and look for good shielding. A good box of coax will cost around $80-100cdn for 1000ft and WILL have posted specs like voltage/current drop, shielding % coverage and often an RF loss chart on the side of it.
 
AcWxRadar

AcWxRadar

SatelliteGuys Pro
Apr 26, 2006
4,575
4
40 miles NW of Omaha. Omaha?
KsPilot,

Here is an example from my own setup. Keep in mind that I have a combination of two different cables, RG-6 and RG-11.

I am operating a DG-380 PowerTech motor and an Invacom QPH-031 LNBF. In the past, I have also incorporated a 4X1 DiSEqC switch in with this mix as well. Currently, however, it is simply a direct connection to the motor and only one of the linear ports of the LNBF (no switch).

The receivers that I have connected to this system at one time or another are the AZBox Premium, the Coolsat 5000 and the FortecStar Dynamic.

I thought that I had a little longer cable run earlier this year, but in the dead of winter, I didn't feel up to measuring it out precisely so I just estimated. Today, I actually took a 100' tape measure out in the yard and seriously checked it.

From the dish site to my outdoor junction box I have 250 feet of RG-11 cable run. From there, I have 40 feet of RG-6 cable to get into the garage and through the attic and down the wall to a junction plate in my living room. Then another 20 feet from that plate to the receiver (so a total of 60 feet of RG-6).

Total length of cable is 310 feet (250' of RG-11 and 60' of RG-6) with two barrel connector splices enroute.

Although I do detect approximately a 10% loss in signal level when comparing the level directly at the dish vs the level at the receiver location inside the house, the signal QUALITY remained virtually unaffected (as hoped and somewhat expected).

The satellite signals that I found to be in the "generally acceptable" or better range directly at the dish were found to be just fine at the receiver within the house when using the RG-11 cable. When utilizing RG-6 cable for the entire length, but roughly ~75 feet less, I did notice that the signals that were very weak directly at the dish were lost, nearly lost or annoyingly weak at the receiver inside the house. Therefore, you can see that there is a difference.

I decided to use the RG-11 cable moreso because of worries over how much power I could deliver to the motor and or the switch from the receiver over that distance. When I finally do make this system permanent, I will shorten the entire cable (by routing it into the house at a different point) and try to utilize more RG-11 cable whenever possible, but less of both overall.

For your personal situation, you should have absolutely NO worries! I am also certain that I could go much, much further if needed and not have too many problems, if I engineer everything well.

A person can calculate all this out ahead of time using all the specifications of the equipment and cable, but I thought you might like to read first-hand examples of what to expect from real-world scenarios. Most often, you can do (or get away with) a great deal more than you think.

RADAR
 
AcWxRadar

AcWxRadar

SatelliteGuys Pro
Apr 26, 2006
4,575
4
40 miles NW of Omaha. Omaha?
I have about a 250' run, and have never used an amp. I've tried them, but they didn't improve anything. I've been working on moving my dish out another 50-75' or so, but before doing that, I wanted to do some tests to make sure that I didn't degrade the signal too much, so today I took out a spool of about 75'-100' (not sure which) of coax, and inserted it between my motor and the LNBF. It did drop the signal quite a bit, but didn't hurt the quality all too much. But then, I decided to try my inline amp again. This time it finally helped. Brought the S/Q almost up to where it was at it's best before.
So anyway, my opinion is that up to 250' you don't need any amp, but if you get up in the 325-350' range, then yes, an amp will help.

I'm hoping to move my 3' dish up on top of a new garage we just built last fall. I think from there I should have a much better view of the sky, but I was afraid that the extra 75' might make things worse, but maybe not.

B.J.

If you do have a need to relocate your dish further away from the house, I really do suggest looking into RG-11 cable vs RG-6. It isn't that much more expensive and if it elliminates the need for a powered booster or amplifier. That's all the better! I support, condone, recommend (what is the word I am looking for here?)... PROMOTE! Yeah, that is it, I would promote the use of RG-11 cable for long runs. You gain more from the use of RG-11 than you would from the application of a power amplifier with RG-6 cable.

Obviously, every circumstance needs to be evaluated on its own merits and through a case-by-case analysis. However, after judging from my own personal experiences regarding the price and the ease of use and the benefits, I have to say that I certainly appreciate the advantages of RG-11 cable over RG-6. There are other cable types (classifications) which may be even better, but for my personal applications, RG-11 fits just about perfect. Price VS advantages VS disadvantages all weigh in and fit very well for my specific application.

RADAR
 
D

drboyddrboyd

SatelliteGuys Family
Jan 4, 2010
115
0
US
Congrats on joining a pretty elite (if I do say so myself) group in FTA! :up

Between the mechanical skills required, the geometry, and the programming and set-up, there's not all that many people who can put together a functioning system. Some have one of those skills in abundance, but to have all three is (IMHO) pretty unusual....


---snip---
I have a WS International dish,ws9120 hh motor and a sonicveiw PremierPro 360 coming tomorrow and can't wait!
This will be my first FTA.
 
AcWxRadar

AcWxRadar

SatelliteGuys Pro
Apr 26, 2006
4,575
4
40 miles NW of Omaha. Omaha?
Congrats on joining a pretty elite (if I do say so myself) group in FTA! :up

Between the mechanical skills required, the geometry, and the programming and set-up, there's not all that many people who can put together a functioning system. Some have one of those skills in abundance, but to have all three is (IMHO) pretty unusual....

Although KsPilot has only recently joined this club (by the way... "WELCOME" to you KsPilot), he has certainly arrived at the most appropriate site for FTA satellite information. We certainly have a really excellent family of hobbyists here and what one of us may not know, someone else does and if anyone is uncertain of any answer, we can always rely upon another to close in on that gap.

We generally go far out of our way to provide the most accurate answers to the questions posed by anyone, and we do so often because that is how we either learn for ourselves or refresh our own knowledge. Obviously, each of us cannot know everything, but we can generally find the answers to most questions with a little help from our friends here. :)

RADAR
 
pjcl

pjcl

SatelliteGuys Pro
Nov 9, 2008
318
0
Earth
Amen to that, AcWxRadar! I could not have put mine up without you guys!!
 
AcWxRadar

AcWxRadar

SatelliteGuys Pro
Apr 26, 2006
4,575
4
40 miles NW of Omaha. Omaha?
Amen to that, AcWxRadar! I could not have put mine up without you guys!!

Absolutely PJ!

We are a fun group and a close knit family here. If you can't learn from us here, you can't learn from anyone. Always remember: "If the girls don't find you handsome, at least they can find you handy"! :)

RADAR
 
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