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Old 03-08-2009, 01:15 PM   #1
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Pleasanton , California
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Antenna, TV, radio, lots of stuff...

So it appears after the deluge that we received last night that I have a huge issue with the TV antenna leaking into the 'stream and leaking at the antenna crank, then into the interior shell until it runs down to the seam in the ceiling and drips down, as well as further to the vista-view block outs where it further drips. Nice, eh? We're new to airstreams and new to camping and have yet to camp with our stream. I am contemplating removing the antenna altogether because I don't like the non-streamlined look that it adds to the 'stream. I am thinking of the same for the CB/radio antenna at the front/street corner since the CB is no longer connected and the old radio just adds weight and [crappy] sound in comparison to the Bose Wave radio that we put in the 'stream. So a few questions for y'all:

1. how much time do you (non-fulltimers) really use your TV for watching broadcast TV (in other words, don't include time spend watching DVDs / playing video games, and the like that don't require the antenna)?

2. is there generally over-the-air reception available where you're camping?

3. is there a majority population of hook-up campsites with cable already there?

4. anyone using a "small" indoor antenna (rabbit ears, hoop, etc.) and getting decent results for reception?

5. the AS is one big aluminum shell...anyone ever try attaching an antenna wire directly to the exterior shell and seeing if the shell itself will receive a signal? I'm no electrical guru so I'm not about to try this.

6. does anyone still use the CB? Is this some old-fashioned but still used method of communication at rally sites?

My ultimate goal here is to determine if I should A) remove the TV, radio, and/or CB antennas and patch over w/ a flat piece of aluminum & some Vulkem or B) repair & seal all antenna & wire entrances.

Thanks in advance for your opinions and input

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Old 03-08-2009, 01:18 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by atobols View Post

5. the AS is one big aluminum shell...anyone ever try attaching an antenna wire directly to the exterior shell and seeing if the shell itself will receive a signal? I'm no electrical guru so I'm not about to try this.

Thanks in advance for your opinions and input
The shell will not work as an antenna, since it's grounded when you plug into city power.


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Old 03-08-2009, 01:44 PM   #3
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Grand Junction , Colorado
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Our experience except when boondocking and then you'd need a 12v TV, is that usually there's either cable or broadcast TV. When it comes from a translator in a more remote area, often the reception is poor. I doubt a rabbit ears would work well inside.

Radio (which is 12v.) can often pickup something and we look for PBS stations because we are into the news. When we have cable, we also look for news channels. We have rarely seen newspapers (except sometimes some very local ones in which we have no interest) at campgrounds unlike motels which often have USA Today. TV and radio is the only source of what's going on.

Whatever you do, leave the wires as you may be using them in the future for satellite connections for internet or radio or TV. You can't know what you (or the next owner) will want in a few years. If you can't use the old wires for that, if you're very lucky you may be able to use them to fish through newer wires, although from what I understand that's very difficult.

I think the day of non truckers using CB is long gone. Walkie talkies are now easily available.

Sorry to hear about your leaks and hope you get them solved soon.

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Old 03-08-2009, 01:46 PM   #4
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After removing my external antenna several years ago. I'm replacing it. I don't expect to get reception all the time but the new digital quatilty is worth it. Rabbit ears, they don't work inside an Airstream even when they work right next door in my house. Some campsites are cable ready some are not. I don't find much use for a CB, but folks do still use them for caravans.
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Old 03-08-2009, 03:42 PM   #5
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Depending on your view of Newton Minow’s "vast wasteland" of television, removing the tube might not be a bad thing.
We usually are able to find a few broadcast stations while camping. While the content might be predictable there is one thing that I’ve found to be their saving grace.
It seems many of the stations that have switched to DTV have a full time weather channel, many with radar and severe weather warnings.
As far as the old fold, up crank around, leaker goes, there are a number of omni-directional antennas designed for trailers. RoadStar Omnidirectional TV Antennas - Winegard You only need to seal a grommet for the lead-in.
I have a mast mounted omni on the tongue that works fairly well. If I should ever find myself at a park with cable the input is right there by the tanks.
I guess until Wi-Fi is readily available in the boonies I'll be keeping the tube.

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