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Author Topic: Satellite dish won't lock onto satellites?  (Read 973 times)

SargeW

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Satellite dish won't lock onto satellites?
« on: June 01, 2016, 07:12:52 PM »
I left Spearfish SD this morning after being there a week and my Weingard Roadtrip Mission dome satellite dish worked fine. I drove to Mitchell SD and set up in my site. Clear blue sky no obstructions, and the the dish just searched and spins.  Checked the cables, one had a sketchy connector that I took off. Plugged everything back in, same results. 

I went up on the roof and took off the dome. Turned on switch, dish began to circle and search, never locked. Even checked the satellite position with a manual compass.  I had an A/B switch in line for the exterior tripod, so I took it off to verify it wasn't the problem.  No difference.  I get the direct logo, and can access the menu. Pulling up the signal strength meters they never register. 

As a last resort I set up my remote tripod and switched the A/B switch to tripod. Had signal in 30 seconds. TV is on, good strong signal with the remote dish. Switch back over to the roof dish, nothing. Just spins and searches.

I have narrowed it down to two possibilities. The cable from the roof to the dish suddenly went bad (doubtful) or the electronics in the dome quit working.  Any guesses or clues for a starting point?  The last thing I would like to do right now is buy a new dish.  Are the parts repairable?   

Any advice is appreciated. 
Marty--
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ArdraF

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Re: Satellite dish won't lock onto satellites?
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2016, 10:21:00 PM »
Marty, I have one possible reason.  The same thing happened to us one time at an FMCA rally.  Wide open sky.  A Motosat friend came over and went on the roof with Jerry.  After a while he told us to move the coach back a foot and it worked!  It turns out that particular dish only moved about 355 degrees instead of a full circle.  The satellite was in that 5 degree dead area.  Our friend said he had only seen that situation one other time.  Thank goodness he was there!  If you by some chance have one like that then bringing out your portable dish to a slightly different location would make it work.  So maybe move the coach a foot or so to try it??  These gremlins are enough to make you tear your hair out!

ArdraF
ArdraF
:D :D

SargeW

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Re: Satellite dish won't lock onto satellites?
« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2016, 11:35:19 PM »
Thanks for the tip Ardra. I've done a little searching and I may just be in a weak spot. Winegard shows a map on their site that shows this area as questionable.  The reflector on my dome is pretty small. My portable dish is the 18X20". 

I am going to check some cabling tomorrow just to be sure.
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
Cummins ISL 450 HP/Powerglide chassis
Visit our new travel blog! http://www.mytripjournal.com/rvnchickTNG
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Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Satellite dish won't lock onto satellites?
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2016, 09:15:48 AM »
I've heard that both Direct and Dish have recently made some satellite changes that affect some or maybe all auto-seek dishes and they no longer identify the right bird to lock onto. You might call Winegard Support and ask about that. Probably a software upgrade to correct some parameter.  We aren't using satellite anymore, so I don't have up to date info.
Gary
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SargeW

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Re: Satellite dish won't lock onto satellites?
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2016, 02:44:22 PM »
I went back on the roof with a volt meter and checked the cable coming into the dish. The "Main" coax showed a voltage of 13.4 volts. The secondary cable (LNB #2?) showed 0. 

I came back down and decided to try the dome again. I put the A/B switch back on "A" and turned the satellite switch on.  While the dome was searching I went to the signal meter screen that shows the signal strength from each transponder.  About half way through the list, I started seeing numeric values on some of the transponders! 

Then they all started to fill back in, and the dish stopped moving.  Then for no appearant reason, I got a picture.

I love it when the problem disappears for no good reason and without a clue as to what was wrong in the first place.

I did try calling Winegard this morning. I had to leave a voice message for a call back that never came. I also sent an email, which I did get a preliminary response to just asking for further info.  That was about an hour ago. No response since then.
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
Cummins ISL 450 HP/Powerglide chassis
Visit our new travel blog! http://www.mytripjournal.com/rvnchickTNG
Support your local Police Officer, Fire Fighter and Military!

 

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