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Old 10-23-2008, 02:46 PM   #1
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Need advice on satellite domes

I have a tripod and antenna, but I'm feeling lazy and decadent...I want a roof mounted satellite dome antenna so all I have to do is 'push the button'!!. There are several stationary models on the market - King dome and Wingard are pretty much equal in performance and price as far as I can see. My dealer carries/recommends the King Dome. I am aware of the limitations of the permanent roof mount, and will continue to carry the portable tripod for use when I have to. Does anyone have experience with either or another brand? Your pros and cons, please. Thanks.
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Old 10-23-2008, 04:21 PM   #2
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I've installed the Winegard Trav'ler, Dish Network model...it's been in service for about 4 months, and we are very happy with it:

1. large reflector dish...get's great reception in marginal areas...this 'dish' is larger than the ones inside those dome units.

2. has three LNB's for the 110, 119, and 129 degree Sat's so you can receive HD channels if you have an HD receiver box from Dish...we don't have one yet, but will soon.

3. you can run up to three coax cables from the antenna to three separate TV's if you wish...we ran two...for two TV's...you'll need a Dish receiver for each one, however.

4. complete automatic tracking when parked...we get our trailer set, plug in our electrical shore power, hit one button on the controller next to out TV and the Trav'ler does the rest...it takes a few min's, as it first must find your local position (using built in GPS technology, I suspect)...then it peaks the signal of all three Sat's, and then peaks the signal 'slew' (twisting the dish) for optimum signal streingth...it's fun to watch it do it's thing up there on the roof!

5. easy to install on the roof...did it myself...hardest part is running the coax cables inside the AS skin...the actual mounting of the antenna goes quickly.

6. we also use a small inverter so we can power the antenna, receiver, and TV when we're in the boonies...works great!

7. folds down very 'flat' when on the road, and lower than our AC unit.

Hope that helps some, I would buy again...I think I paid abound $1300 for the complete unit...check the Net.
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Old 10-23-2008, 07:49 PM   #3
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Very Cool man! I want one...I think we'll go with heat...maybe aircon 1st
I personally would rather have the dish but I got the husband thing happenin and he wants ....water, a potty .... and a bed.....maybe a place to sit and eat... whine whine whine.....Oh and he wants a fridge too!

Come on Honey. . . lets get our priorities straight! Well..I guess they are kind of important. And he does have a point.

I bet I'll have one before I get solar panels on.

Was it hard to install? Is it remote control?
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Old 10-23-2008, 08:51 PM   #4
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Thanks for the info, Mexray. I have always wondered about the performance of the "dome" unit vs the larger dishes. Domes seemed too good to be true.

Comments from anyone else?

(Great looking AS, by the way)
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Old 10-23-2008, 09:32 PM   #5
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From what I hear With a dome or roof mounted dish if U windup in a park under a tree U are pretty much toast as far as reception. We don't have a dish yet,but we will come next camping season. Im gonna try the dish with the arm mounted on a $4 paver from Lowes and see what happens. U can move the dish out from under that tree U are parked under. Just a thought.
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Old 10-24-2008, 06:01 AM   #6
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That is all correct and why I'll continue to carry my portable dish and 200' of coax -- in case the trees are in the way. However, I still want to be able to park, push a button and let the dome auto-tune the satellites. Has anyone installed a dome on an airstream? I really need some feedback is available.
Thanks to all.
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Remember:
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Old 10-24-2008, 06:25 AM   #7
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Scott - I am also somewhat lazy, maybe even something of a techno-challenged couch potato. And my knees hurt, a lot. So, I had a dish installed on the top of my trailer, and I love it. We arrive at our destination, plug in for power and push the "Search" button. Up comes the dish & the search begins. In minutes we have our Direct TV shows just like at home.

And yes, trees can be a problem and I get LOTS of flack from my AS friend for always wanting to park in the open and NOT under the trees (where HE prefers to be). So for us it's a give 'n take deal - sometimes under trees (& without TV) & sometimes in the open. The only important thing, to us, is sharing time & making memories with our best friends. Airstreaming.
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Old 10-24-2008, 07:33 AM   #8
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Ditto the sharing time together and making memories. I also have knee problems and recently had knee surgery. What type of dish did you install. I'm not totally against a dish, just like the looks of the dome, but I a flexible.
Thanks.
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Old 10-24-2008, 07:49 AM   #9
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We chose to go with the sattelite dish that we could move away from the trailer. We like to park under trees for the shade with dogs and all. When we were at the International in Salem either one would have worked because there was no shade. What we found out that even though our A/S is prewired for cable T.V. the coaxial is not shielded therefore we could not use the dish for that. We just run the cable under front screen door and was able to use it. I exporing the possibility of putting a connection under the refrigerator space that I can run our sattelite to.
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Old 10-24-2008, 08:06 AM   #10
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Scott I wasn't puttin down your idea. Its great if U want to do it and can afford it GO FOR IT. I have had NO experience with Sat TV . I recently had a high pressure DISH saleman try to sell me a system for the house and an extra dish for the trailer and then move one receiver to the trailer in summer. He would not answer my questions about Trees,Snow,Rain ect interfering with the sigs. I did not buy.
GOOD LUCK Scott WE NEED A REPORT
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Old 10-24-2008, 08:29 AM   #11
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Roger, no offense taken- will report when I decide and get whatever installed.

Bob, I'm surprised at your comment about unshielded coax. I use the prewired cable coax for my remote sat dish all the time. Have even used it on two different 'streams. Both worked great with no reduction in quality. I can't understand why you are having reception problems with the built in coax. Of course, I too, am somewhat hi-tech challenged.
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Remember:
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Old 10-24-2008, 10:57 AM   #12
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Thanks to all. I just talked to the tech/installer at my local dealer (Airstream of Arkansas --GREAT folks, by the way!!). Ordered the Winegard Trav'ler, Dish Network model. I looked at domes, etc, this came out on top, in my view.
Thanks again.
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Old 10-24-2008, 01:03 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScottW View Post
What type of dish did you install. I'm not totally against a dish, just like the looks of the dome, but I a flexible.
Thanks.
Scott - Mine is a plain ole Winegard but I really like it. When I got mine several years ago the dome dishes were considerably more expensive. Mine works fine & I don't mind the look. Others might, but . . . . . Just have to be sure to PUT IT DOWN when we pull out!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 10-24-2008, 01:14 PM   #14
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MexRay
I'm sorry I forgot to comment(pics)on your installation. LOOKS GOOD.
anyone know if there has been a thread on DISHES .
I could not get a straight answer out of that salesman.About TREES and RAIN and SNOW and its affect on reception. Maybe he didn't have a clue,he was just a saleman.
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Old 10-24-2008, 02:50 PM   #15
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Dish

Has anyone tried the new Vu-cube? From the sounds of things they are as effective as the Dome or dish and can be moved from under the trees- up to 50 ft. from the AS.
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Old 10-24-2008, 03:34 PM   #16
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Scott:
I will do some research on that with an individual I know in the industry. Thanks for the tip. When I tried to us the pre wired system in the A/S I kept getting the message that signal was interupted. I to get a little hi tech challenged, even when I am trying to turn the Telly on.
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Old 10-24-2008, 05:58 PM   #17
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Bob. Please check it out. As I said, I have used the pre-wired cable connector in two different airstreams for a satellite dish hookup and it worked fine in both. You do have to take the 'pig-tail' off of the wall panel where the cable enters the living quarters to use the satellite input, then run a short piece of coax to the sat reciever. Careful when you do that...my wall panel was labeled wrong from the factory. That took a looong time and my wife's suggestion to discover what the problem was.
Let me know how it comes out.
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Old 10-24-2008, 06:00 PM   #18
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Airtandem,
I thought about the vuqube, but wifey likes to stay up most of the night watching the tube. I'm afraid someone may take a liking to the 'quge and walk off with it, no matter how well secured it may be to the picnic table, etc..... I prefer something a little less 'pilferable'.
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Remember:
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Old 10-25-2008, 12:07 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikethefixit View Post
I could not get a straight answer out of that salesman.About TREES and RAIN and SNOW and its affect on reception. Maybe he didn't have a clue,he was just a saleman.
Mike,

Bottom line, you'll get little to no reception if the signal is blocked by trees. In the case of rain and snow, interrupted signals start to occur with moderate precipitation. Fog and light precip tend to not be a bother. There are covers available to protect the dish and LNB's which will extend coverage into somewhat heavier precipitation but you are still likely to lose your reception in the heavy stuff. What a cover does allow you to do is to clear the snow off with a broom easily without knocking the antenna out of alignment. During those periods it's back to the over-the-air antenna and whatever that may provide for coverage. Best argument for getting Tivo or having a DVD player and a stash of your favorites handy. Up here in Maine, I'd guess we lost reception a dozen times over a year's time, rarely for more than 24 hours and usually for less than four to six hours in freezing rain and snow, no more than a couple of hours in rain squalls (we're over 50 miles from the coast so do not have the heavy tropical depression rains they get near the Gulf).

I hope that helps you judge how often you might expect service interruptions. Of course, your frequency may vary...
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