Really don't know what's wrong

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stanleyjohn

stanleyjohn

SatelliteGuys Pro
Mar 25, 2010
1,892
30
south/central Ct,USA
Looks like FAT Air has some good ideas!give them a try!cant hurt.Thanks for the pics!nice set up!now i understand why making adjustments to LNBs can be not so safe and easy.When it comes to the Q signal!on my Sathawk i can get a pic and sound with a Q in the 20s with some pixel loss and my average high Q is around 65 to 75 Note!! these readings will vary some on a different receiver.Heres a idea you can try that i do when looking for a sat and not sure about a strong or active TP.On my receiver the Q always reads 5 when not on a active satellites TP.What i do is chose a few TPs from a updated satellite list then by using a compass aim as close as i can to the sat i want to see then click my V box alittle east or west at a time hoping to see my Q change to a larger number.Example!! Q changes from 5 to a peak of around 8!at this time i know that im on a satellite but dont have enough Q to lock it in.The Tp may be at low power so what i do is a blind scan hoping to find some stronger TP.If i do then i got the sat!if not then the sat is either not active or my set up is not aligned correctly..Keep cool and be safe! Stan
 
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shankle

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
Mar 10, 2010
338
0
florida
Hi Stanleyjohn:
I have a Uniden Sq530 I use as my pusher. No V-box or G-box.
Have to use the dish face from Roberts analysis to get near a sat.
Called Extreme Slope. It seems to work.

I did my fiasco for the day and the heat at 9:00 is already in the mid 80s.
Probably will reach 100 in the direct sun.

I went to my next nearest sat from Zenith, AMC 3 at 87d W.
Signal was around 75 and Q in the 60s.
Got NASA and other goodies. Didn't try the KU yet.
Then went to Intelsat 9 at 58d W. The signal was broken up like it was
scrambled but CCTV is NOT scrambled.

It seems if I get one sat clear and try to get another sat clear I lose
the 1st one. This should mean something to you experts but not to me.

How in the world did those guys back 10 years ago get a movable dish
aligned in less than an hour? My hats off to them.
 
FaT Air

FaT Air

HOA Free Zone
Feb 27, 2010
6,668
914
97W 48N
Now that you have signal at a middle sat, and can get signal on the east side. Very carefully adjust the polar mount angle to max the Q on the middle sat. Then go to the east side and find that sat again. Here you peak the Q by alternately rotating the polar mount on the pole(very slightly), and moving the dish with the actuator. On way you can tell if you have to rotate it east by lifting slightly, the bottom of the dish, if Q improves, rotate polar mount east slightly. Q falls, rotate polar mount west. Then go back to the middle and re-peak the middle, then again on the east.
Then sit back and have a nice cool thirst quencher and scan in some sats.
How in the world did those guys back 10 years ago get a movable dish
aligned in less than an hour? My hats off to them.
Usually had 'em up and running in, complete install, in about an hour. Delivered dish assembled on a slab, via a custom trailer. But back then there wasn't as many sats. And they were spaced 10, then six degrees apart. The bullseye meter and walkie talkies were all it took. today with digital and sat spacing of 2 degrees makes it a bit more challenging.
 
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turbosat

turbosat

SatelliteGuys Master
Dec 26, 2006
9,003
80
Oneonta,AL
Aligning a dish is a challenge, especially for first-timers. Back when everything was analog, it was fairly easy. Getting a big dish to track the arc nowadays is something else, digital is so finicky. When its 100 degrees, it surely wouldn't be much fun either.
 
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shankle

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
Mar 10, 2010
338
0
florida
To Fat Air,
Thanks for your reply.
It's at least a 100d in the sunlight now. Will give it another try in the morning.

I was waiting on the puter to finish a task, so I tried Amc 3 again and nothing
came in. So I tried AMC ku and got the medical channel. Surprise!!!
So I went back to AMC3 C and it then came in. Tried Amc3 ku and got nothing.

The lnbs are wrapped in a plastic bag for protection until I get this solved.
Could it be the heat on the LNBs?
 
johnnynobody

johnnynobody

SatelliteGuys Master
Pub Member / Supporter
Aug 2, 2009
8,175
1,767
USA
Usually had 'em up and running in, complete install, in about an hour. Delivered dish assembled on a slab, via a custom trailer. But back then there wasn't as many sats. And they were spaced 10, then six degrees apart. The bullseye meter and walkie talkies were all it took. today with digital and sat spacing of 2 degrees makes it a bit more challenging.

It took me 3 hours to align my 90 cm dish for Ku tracking of the arc but Ku has always been difficult to pinpoint. Too bad it takes so much tweaking even for C band today. It would be really nice if one could just find the true south sat and that you wouldn't have to tweak on the "low" sats. I wonder if the technology would get to that point in my lifetime.
 
johnnynobody

johnnynobody

SatelliteGuys Master
Pub Member / Supporter
Aug 2, 2009
8,175
1,767
USA
To Fat Air,
Thanks for your reply.
It's at least a 100d in the sunlight now. Will give it another try in the morning.

I was waiting on the puter to finish a task, so I tried Amc 3 again and nothing
came in. So I tried AMC ku and got the medical channel. Surprise!!!
So I went back to AMC3 C and it then came in. Tried Amc3 ku and got nothing.

The lnbs are wrapped in a plastic bag for protection until I get this solved.
Could it be the heat on the LNBs?

I would imagine that wrapping the LNB's up like that would cause the LNB's to overheat.
 
FaT Air

FaT Air

HOA Free Zone
Feb 27, 2010
6,668
914
97W 48N
I used to have the big black plastic "trash bin" lookin thing on mine. then went to change out the lnb cause it just wasn't cuttin it (back in the analog days, btw) It's only about 80 degrees, but I couldn't even hold the lnb, it was so hot. Never had my lnb's covered since then. Just Scotch 33 on the connections. And that new, now 18+ yr old, lnb is still workin. Only recently replaced it as I went to a true FTA type(voltage select polarity). If you prefer to have a cover, I suggest white, and plenty of ventilation, maybe even a fan if in full sunlight and extreme temps (80 +) a lot.
Another thing that can be a LNB killer is paint. Huh, What you say? Yeah, Paint.
If the surface of the dish is painted with high gloss paint, as the sun passes behind the sat, the suns rays are focused on the LNB, making a nice solar oven. And because the diameter of the sun is N degrees wide, it's there for quite some time. (I've had some wives of customers (BITD of analog subs) do just that, When told they had to paint it over with flat paint, some threatened their hubby that it then had to go. I know of one that did.) I hope your cover is white, and the black ring it mounts to, I'd fill it full of holes for ventilation. Glue some screen over them to keep out the bugs.
OK- Back to your band select hickup. How are you doing this, DISQC or 22khz sw?
could be a problem there. For initial tune up, I ended up removing my band switching, and only used C band. Then when tuned up on C, I Just swapped coax to the KU and did a small polishing up of the alignment. Remember, beamwidth on Ku is a fraction of what it is on C on a BUD. Then I added the switch for automatic band switching.
BTW just figured out my initial confusion earlier.
Zenith - 33.94 = Axis - 29.72 + Declination - 4.22
Extreme slope (NOT ZENITH, but at ZENITH) = 33.94 = Axis - 29.72 + Declination - 4.22
Guess I've never measured it that way and didn't know what it was called.
Just measured the Polar angle, and set to Lat.
Then measured dish offset and made sure it was DEC. Chart degrees different.
Anyway
90 - 33.94(Extreme slope) = 56.06(dish look angle at ZENITH) so we are talkin'
the same angles, just using a different angle because of a a different reference.
shankle, just take your time and keep cool, I've had heat stroke, and it ain't fun.
Aligning a BUD for the first time is a test of patience. But you're well on your way into C band.
 

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shankle

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
Mar 10, 2010
338
0
florida
Thank you Johnnynobody and Fat Air for your replies.

I will take the plastic bag off the lnbs and wrap the wires with tape.
I don't want to put the plastic cover on until I am finished. I will paint
it white and I will not paint the dish dark green unless you tell me otherwise.
It would be a satin finish in Rustoleum hunter green.
I will figure out someway to keep the holes mostly on the bottom of
the cover and cover them with screen.

I haven't changed the DISQC switch since the days of the tree accident with
an Orbitron dish and Norsat lnbs. Don't think that is a problem.

My Patience has been going on for 6 months.:D
 
FaT Air

FaT Air

HOA Free Zone
Feb 27, 2010
6,668
914
97W 48N
For now I think I would just concentrate on C band, as it's got more leeway with aiming.
remove the switch, tune it up. then hook up Ku, and do a final tweak on dish, and feed for Ku. then add the switch.
That will also give an indication of where the band switch problem lies. Could be temperature of the LNB, After getting Q and watching, will it die in the heat of the day? Could be the switch. At his point we're just guessing. But if we add one thing at a time, we will know for sure, as we just added or switched this or that.
 
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shankle

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
Mar 10, 2010
338
0
florida
To Fat Air.
I really hate to mess with the wires in the house as its been many years
since I connected them and I had an awful time of it.
As an iterim solution how about just disconnecting the KU cable from
the KU Lnb?
The back of my Pansat looks like Ma Bell. Wires going all over the place.
 
FaT Air

FaT Air

HOA Free Zone
Feb 27, 2010
6,668
914
97W 48N
If it's that big of a job, just leave it alone.
You said you had Q on I 9 @58W also. So this morning I'd go back there, get a Q reading, then rotate the polar mount on the pole (Azimuth) ever so slightly one way or the other, then move the dish with the actuator to see if there's improvement. Rotate the opposite direction if it gets worse. Repeat this until no further improvement can be had. then tighten up the bolts so the wind don't rotate it.
That should be about it for one day. I think we're getting there, you're very close!
Now, check the q on AMC 3 again, might be a bit E or W of where it was before.
How are they? If they've gone down, might want to wait till Tuesday am, to readjust the Polar angle up or down as necessary to peak the Q. but now, Monday, keep an eye on the Q your getting from r any C band channel. If it starts dropping off with the temp going up, it could mean a problematic LNB.

In a nutshell,The standard procedure to tune up a BUD, is first make sure it's assembled with the proper declination (you've got that pegged) Second, Drive the dish to Zenith with the actuator, locate the closest to true south C band sat, by rotating the polar azimuth, (this is the last time we touch the azimuth at or near Zenith) and adjust the polar angle for Max Q. (You're only a few degrees off of true south there) Third, adjust the polar azimuth on a sat on the end of the arc.(Where you are now) Then recheck Q on the center again and re adjust the polar angle if necessary. See, You've just about got 'er done.
 
migold

migold

SatelliteGuys Pro
Dec 2, 2006
555
71
Pearisburg, Virginia
Let me make a couple of comments, that may have no bearing on the problem.
I have a buttonhook 10' dish. In your pix - 000_0168.jpg, it looks like the 'hook' of your buttonhook is missing. Maybe the design of this dish is supposed to be this way, but it sure looks much different from mine.
In your pix, 000_0169.jpg, it looks to me like your dish is aimed over a house and possibly into tall trees. This looks like a relatively low elevation, so maybe this is your west extreme end of arc.
Good Luck!!
 
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shankle

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
Mar 10, 2010
338
0
florida
Hi Migold,
Yes the western part of the arc is over the house and trees.
Since there isn't to much I can view on 135dW(amc10) and 133dw
(g12), I am going to ignore them and they also might be to low on the
horizon for me to get good quality. 131dW might also be to low.

I have no idea what you are referring to about the button hook.
This is the way I got from someone else.

I took off the plastic sack today and taped the electrical wires.
Then I went to Amc3 (87d w) where I got a good signal and quality
yesterday. Today I got a lousy signal and no quality. With a lot
of playing around I managed to get a signal in the 70s and quality in the
60s. Then went to intelsat 9 (58dW) and got signal in the 70s and quality
in the 60s.
Then the HEAT started......
 
FaT Air

FaT Air

HOA Free Zone
Feb 27, 2010
6,668
914
97W 48N
We're almost done!

HEY HEY HEY!!!
I managed to get a signal in the 70s and quality in the
60s. Then went to intelsat 9 (58dW) and got signal in the 70s and quality
in the 60s.
Then the HEAT started......
Good Job! I think you may have the whole arc on C band now.
For Ku, we have to get it as perfect as we can. so
Tomorrow, tweak again the polar angle on AMC 3 for best Q, then recheck Q and Azimuth on 58W, (still using C band) Then go to Ku and see what the performance is.
If not so good, I would first try adjusting the feed, hopefully 125°W puts the feed low enough for you. (Find C band at 125°W then switch to Ku, ??)
and I think you'll be good to go. Remember- only adjust polar angle at zenith, and polar azimuth on the end of arc(or as near to it as you can get Q)
BTW: migold, This a a design from a mfg I can't remember the name of, we called it a needle feed. The metal feed support stops at the small end of the rf neutral cone allowing the signal to end up in the feed. No shadowed area on the dish from the "Hook".
 
truckracer

truckracer

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 17, 2004
4,338
351
Charleston wv
Set your declination and forget it. No further adjustments of declination are necessary. From this point just adjust elevation, Azimuth, and polar axis (turning the mount on the pole). Ku on my 10' was real touchy so concentrate on your true south c band sat. Here in the past there was no c band on my true south (83w).

If your button hook is sagging a little and most all of them do-the dish will be improperly illuminated. You may still get some cband channels but signal will not be optimal.

Measure across the dish from the edge of the scalar ring and position the button hook perfectly in the middle using either 1/2" emt conduit with flattened ends and holes drilled or slots cut using a dremel or similliar tool. The steel wire idea will work too using turnbuckles from the hardware store for adjustment.

After your feedhorn is centered and declination is set- set the f/d on the feedhorn and leave it.

Now just concentrate on elevation and polar axis until it tracks properly.
 
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shankle

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
Mar 10, 2010
338
0
florida
Thank you Truckracer for replying.
Very good suggestion you made about centering the button hook.
I put the wires on and ASSUMED the button hook was in the center.
Couldn't find turnbuckles in the hardware store small enough, so I used
a little u-shaped thing with two screws that tightened down on the wire.
I only snugged the wires and I did notice that the top wire was always
rather tight and the bottom slightly lose. So the feedhorn must be sagging.
Tomorrow I will check the centering of the feed horn. I'm sure that has
something to do with my problems.

This morning I had quite a few stations coming in on Intelsat 9 (58w)
with signal strength of about 70% and Q in low 60%. Temperature iwas
in the 70s. Six hours later I tried it again and could get nothing. Signal
strength was 65%, Q was zero and heat near 100d.
I'm hoping your suggestion about centering the feedhorn will help. The
heat of the day here in Florida is terrible. I'm sure the expansion of
the metal is throwing things off.
 
stanleyjohn

stanleyjohn

SatelliteGuys Pro
Mar 25, 2010
1,892
30
south/central Ct,USA
Shankle!Your last post tells me that maybe the LNB is breaking down in the heat.Are you loosing signals on both your KU and C ? or just one of them.I have an idea!During the early mourning lock on to one your satellites and let it stay on one channel!monitor it during the day and see as it gets hotter does the signal start to go down untill its no more.If it is a heat related problem then you may be able to isolate the problem be applying heat to different areas on the feedhorn/LNB area with a hair dryer on high heat and see if that makes a difference or cool down the dish with a garden hose and see if that brings back the signal.
 
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shankle

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
Mar 10, 2010
338
0
florida
Hi Stanleyjohn,
I am mostly checking out C-band. I can try the hose in the heat
of the day to see if that makes a difference.

I now have the button hook centered. I put turnbuckles on the
outside ends and the button hook is now centered within an eight
of an inch. Now that I have done that, I went to my closest zenith
or 87d (amd 3 W). Tinkered with it for about 2 hours moving the
Azmuth and inclination and got no higher of a signal than 60 and
zero on Q.
Then out of desperation went to Intelsat 9 at 58d went through
the same procedure and got no higher of a signal than 60 and zero
Q.
Gave up for the day because of the heat.

The only thing I know to do now is go W to 135d (amc10) where I
can reach the lnb and try to get an analog channel on tp 9 or 10.
Then I can try adjusting the Chaparral feedhorn. I'm thinking the
guy wires might have affected the lnb alignment.
 
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