Pointing a Slimeline 3 swm

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Harpoon1

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Jul 26, 2018
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I'm new to this forum so please excuse my lack of knowledge! I have the following equipment:

Slimline SWM 3 ONE output
HR24 receiver

I have tried everything under the sun to point this dish and get a connected with no success. I have spent hours looking at the meter on the receiver and get all 0's. I have leveled the pole so many times I'm starting to dream about levels. I even bought an AIM 1.5 meter and still can’t get it done - that's how bad I am at this!!

I’m in the Dallas area so it tells me to point as follows:
Az - 183
El -51
Tilt - 84

I start there and adjust Az to get strongest signal then adjust elev for the same. I have even had the signal "lock" on the meter (had the signal in the -32dBm range) but when I run the EIV I get all X's. See attached picture.

I have pointed non HD dish with great success but this one is getting the best of me. I have not idea where to go from here so any help would be greatly appreciated.
 

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raoul5788

raoul5788

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:welcome to Satelliteguys Harpoon1!
Did you connect a power inserter in line? Is the mast plumb?
 
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Harpoon1

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:welcome to Satelliteguys Harpoon1!
Did you connect a power inserter in line? Is the mast plumb?

When I connected to the receiver I used a power inserter. When I used the AIM meter I did not as I believed the meter would power the LNB. I did plumb the mast.
 
raoul5788

raoul5788

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Did you use the bubble in the mast? They can be unreliable. I prefer using a post level. I'm assuming you have a clear line of sight.
 
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Harpoon1

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Did you use the bubble in the mast? They can be unreliable. I prefer using a post level. I'm assuming you have a clear line of sight.

Yes, I used a magnetic level on front and side and I do have a clear line of sight.
 
raoul5788

raoul5788

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Three words then, patience, patience, patience. Are you using the red line on the bracket to note the elevation setting?
 
raoul5788

raoul5788

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There are numerous cell phone apps that can help locate the satellites. SatelliteAR is a good one.
 
raoul5788

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The skew setting should have the dish close to vertical. Is that the case?
 
raoul5788

raoul5788

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I thought the AIM meter was supposed to be the gold standard.
That's the meter that's used inline. The app is to show the approximate location of the satellites in the sky on your phone.
 
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Harpoon1

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Ok, some success. I’m now getting check marks on satellite 101 but X’s on 99 and 103. If 101 is coming in, is it a skew adjustment to get 99 & 103?
 
raoul5788

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Ok, some success. I’m now getting check marks on satellite 101 but X’s on 99 and 103. If 101 is coming in, is it a skew adjustment to get 99 & 103?
Could be. Are the numbers on 99 and 103 about the same? What signal strength numbers are you getting on all sats and transponders? Don't worry about 99s and 103s.
 
Claude Greiner

Claude Greiner

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Dish could likely be bent....Really!

If your using an AIM meter, you should be able to get the alignment perfect every time.

I have had situations where I dropped the Dish, did everything right and not be able to align it after 20 mins. Went and got a new Dish and had it lined up in a few minutes.

For this very reason I won’t buy any used dishes anymore.

Unless I took the dish down myself, I won’t use it.

99/103 are so dam sensitive, the slightest warp will prevent you from getting a good signal.
 
Claude Greiner

Claude Greiner

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Ok, some success. I’m now getting check marks on satellite 101 but X’s on 99 and 103. If 101 is coming in, is it a skew adjustment to get 99 & 103?

No!

If your mast is 100% level, then set the skew and forget it.

Keep in mind 101 was designed for use with KU band signals on an 18 inch Dish.

When using a slimline your using a 30 inch dish to get the sane signal.

So of course it’s going to be easier to get.

Level your mast

Set your skew

Set the elevation roughly

Move dish from east to west till aim meter locks.

Get 1/2 wrench and adjust the fine elevation bolt to get the lowest negative dB level as possible.

Bump Dish slightly to east and west to check to see if you can get a lower negative dB signal.

Once you think you got it locked, with your index finger pull back ever so slightly on the top and left and right sides of the dish to see if you can get a better signal.

Run EIV test

Lock down if everything passes, or slightly adjust the alignment.

After you lock everything down, Run EIV test again.

If your using a used Dish, it could be bent if your not getting a lock.
 
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Harpoon1

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Jul 26, 2018
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Dallas
Finally success!!!

Amazing advice from everyone, thank you! Here were my lessons learned:

1) getting that mast level is the absolute key. It’s everyone’s first advice for a reason. My problem was I would get the mast level then when I put the heavy dish on and adjusted it would move off center. Finally got small magnet levels that I could use on the actual dish bracket and leveled with the dish on.

2) I had a restriction that was blocking the dish pointing in the optimal direction. The satellite pointer app as recommended above really helped. I struggled with your basic compass getting consistent results.

3) Once I learned the dithering process I really got to a good reading.

Thanks again for all of the great advice.
 
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