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Old 07-03-2015, 12:26 AM   #1
cwf
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1999 34' Excella
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Winegard antenna crank breaking

Howdy...
I have replaced the 'crank' on our Winegard antenna several times in the past couple years.

The unit is lubricated well, there are no 'binds'.... I have replaced o-ring and worm gear shaft... still, they just 'split', lose tension on the lifting shaft and parts fly..

The plastic seems very weak for the task. So, I 'epoxied' the whole thing.. still split... right in line with the set screw.

Before I replace the whole system, does anyone have a fix recommendation?

Thanks in advance !
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Old 07-05-2015, 10:49 PM   #2
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Really? No one experiencing this problem of broken antenna cranks?... or just no idea what to do to resolve the problem?
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Old 07-05-2015, 10:52 PM   #3
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I had one fail on an older AS, but not on the '12. I'd just order two so you have a spare if the thing lets go again.
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Old 07-06-2015, 08:15 AM   #4
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Thanks, Drathaar.. probably my only 'choice'..
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Old 07-06-2015, 08:26 AM   #5
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Cwf, it's not just you. Mine cracked. Replaced it. A few years later it cracked a little. Repaired with epoxy. It is still holding up.
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Old 07-06-2015, 09:13 AM   #6
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No your not the only one, I just take my time and crank it up slowly, but I do find I need to greese the gear every few years to keep it cranking smootly.

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Old 07-06-2015, 11:55 AM   #7
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I have seen the crank break on a 1995 Allegro Bus...
I'm sure the owners didn't "Lubricate gears twice a year"-
Where are these gears? Where do you lubricate? What is the lube?
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Old 07-06-2015, 01:37 PM   #8
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Here is one with a Southern dialect:


Here is one with what sounds like a different dialect..

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Old 07-06-2015, 01:39 PM   #9
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Oh.. and I 'do' run thru the 'lube' process twice a year...

Silicone spray on the "aiming' part (that is the base that swivels against the roof plate...

A shot of silicone spray on the pivot pins...

A shot of silicone spray on the 'lift' shaft and a bit of light grease on the 'worm gear' attached to the top of the lift shaft.

You access these beginning from inside your AS.. by loosening then pulling off the 'Winding'/antenna crank, capture the big spring while noticing the direction the "direction" collar is facing before removing it . It only goes back 'one way'... for it to fit flush with the inside mount plate.

Now, go on the top of the AS, remove that big plastic 'plug' that looks like a nut without a hole in the middle. When this is released, you can then 'lift' the gear/shaft free of the roof. There should be an O-ring or other style gasket on the shaft near the gear... this keep rainwater from leaking in through this spot..
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Old 07-06-2015, 02:57 PM   #10
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I should have saved mine. I would have given it to you. I took off my whole antenna setup on my '72 airstream. Figured, what do I need an antenna for? Didn't think anyone would want it either so just tossed it. I guess from the sounds of it, folks still use broadcast television receivers. Who'da thunk.
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Old 07-06-2015, 03:07 PM   #11
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Thanks, BluesClues! No worries!
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Old 07-06-2015, 03:29 PM   #12
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Hi Channing,
I just had one break last week. Mine was original to this '96 34'er that has become our pride and joy. The ABS plastic was just old and brittle. luckily, another camper where we were had a spare that he sold me. I think I'll buy a couple and put in my tool kit.
In all the years, that I've used these Winegard "batwing" this is the first one I've ever replaced...

Good luck,
Larry




Quote:
Originally Posted by cwf View Post
Really? No one experiencing this problem of broken antenna cranks?... or just no idea what to do to resolve the problem?
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Old 07-06-2015, 03:52 PM   #13
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After forgetting to crank mine down and losing it twice to a freeway overpass I replaced mine with the new fixed one. I believe they come standard on the Interstate. I can't remember the name/model off the top of my head but I think Winegard or KvH made it. I do know both companies make a fixed antenna replacement for the old crank out models. They both get over the air HDTV local channels which work great when combined with DirecTV.
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Old 07-06-2015, 05:46 PM   #14
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Channing - My handle looks original, so not had that problem yet (but it is a pretty fragile part). What I do have is a small leak when it rains heavily. is the O-Ring you reference an easy fix while Im on the roof replacing my vent stack gasket this weekend?
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Old 07-06-2015, 06:55 PM   #15
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I found that the Winegard "Satellite" Antenna Crank Handle RK-Hand I found on Ebay works and looks a lot nicer than the handle that comes with the "TV" Antenna. Its way stronger and folds up for a clean look. It will screw on the existing set up that you have. You can not buy just this part from Winegard so Ebay is your best option... Hope this helps!!!
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Old 07-06-2015, 08:14 PM   #16
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Any ideas why it failed? Bad casting, machining?
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Old 07-06-2015, 08:49 PM   #17
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My set screw has come loose a couple of time causing the handle to drop down the shaft. Last time I put a drop of blue Loc Tite on the threads. So far so good. It seems very cheaply made and prone to easy breakage.
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Old 07-06-2015, 09:08 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by NavyCorpsman View Post
Any ideas why it failed? Bad casting, machining?
The plastic split down the 'thread' of the handle, in line with the set screw. This is the forth one.

I 'tighten' until it makes contact with the 'shaft', then juuuuuust snug enough to hold the handle on under 'spring tension'....

I even filed a small 'groove' in the shaft so that the screw did not have to be run too tight and could still hold on under the spring tension..

Maybe I just keep getting their 'bad batches'....
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Old 07-07-2015, 06:24 AM   #19
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I second the satellite crank suggestion.... Looks like it should be in the Airstream
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Old 07-16-2015, 11:22 AM   #20
cwf
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The new Hand Crank arrived, sans screw and nut. Fired note to Winegard and they are mailing replacement.

It is far beefier than the original... Thanks for the tip!
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