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Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast

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For these remote data sites, satellite internet is probably good enough.
They probably only upload when enough shaking occurs. The ones I found
turn out to get moved, which seems odd to me unless they set them up and
perhaps set off a charge to see it ping.

There is a band just above Ku I thought. 18GGZ or so?

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast

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They setup a ground station with satellite first.  If it looks like
it's usable, they order a lease line, or install a 400MHz uplink.

Nice 5.3 shaker a few minutes ago:
<http://earthquake.usgs.gov/monitoring/helicorders/nca/20120826/
<http://earthquake.usgs.gov/monitoring/helicorders/nca/102/20120826/

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Yep.  There's K band above Ku band.
<http://transition.fcc.gov/oet/spectrum/table/fcctable.pdf
Roughly starting on Pg 50.  Nothing suitable for satellite internet
until you get to Ka band.

--
Jeff Liebermann     jeffl@cruzio.com
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann     AE6KS    831-336-2558

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast

[snip]
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What are you going to have instead of DirectTV?

--
charles

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast
On Sun, 26 Aug 2012 14:50:33 -0800, ctbishop@earthlink.net (Charles
Bishop) wrote:

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I'm not sure yet.  Netflix looks good, but I'll probably get bored
with it after about a year.  YouTube, Hulu+, and others are yet to be
explored.  The local video rental store closed, so renting DVD's and
BluRay disks are not an easy option.  I have some friends with
extensive DVD collections, so I may borrow some stuff.  The downtown
library also has a fair collection of what I watch (documentaries,
history, science, technology, how-to, and occasionally anything that
is mind numbing).  

To keep from tying up a computah and screen, my initial attempt will
be either a Western Digital WD TV Live Streaming Media Player, or a
Windoze box running some PVR application:
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_PVR_software_packages
I would go with Linux, but until there's a native Netflix application
(that doesn't require Silverlight), I'm stuck with Windoze.

I may also go without any TV.  I didn't have a TV for about 15 years
of my life, and never really missed it.  I'm rather disgusted with the
large number of historical distortions, glorified stupidity, amazing
factoids, and saturation advertising.  Even so, I would have no
problem paying for such rubbish if it were all content, but not when
approximately 1/4 to 1/3 of it is advertising and self-promotion.

Incidentally, my all time disappointment was the Discovery channel's
streaming video.  It runs for exactly 5 minutes, stops, waits for the
user to click "continue", and then plays a 30 second commercial.  No
way to get past the commercial without clicking "continue".  If ever
there was a way to chase away viewers, they have found it.

Another disappointment was testing a Sony and a Panasonic BluRay
player with Netflix etc built in.  Both of these companies seem to
have a service that they sell to the streaming content provider to
"allow access" which is a nice term for shaking down the providers for
money to host their service.  Sony had Pandora on their player, but
Panasonic did not.  My crystal ball can see where this is going to go,
where in a few years, services will come and go depending on contract
negotiations with Sony and Panasonic.  No thanks.

--
Jeff Liebermann     jeffl@cruzio.com
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann     AE6KS    831-336-2558

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast

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[snip unsurety]

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I recently shut down my DTV, mostly since sis was paying for it and I
didn't want her to have to. For a while, I watched DVDs, but then had to
move the TV &c, and didn't bother to put it back. So, I'm TVless again at
least for a while. I do notice that I get more things done without it and
haven't gone into withdrawal.

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Until all this shakes out it will be difficult to choose. OTH, people have
Netflix, DVD and/or streaming and like it.

--
charles

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast
On Sun, 26 Aug 2012 17:08:04 -0700, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

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The problem with Netflix is that they don't have all their movies online.

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast
On Sun, 26 Aug 2012 18:19:57 -0400, "krw@att.bizzzzzzzzzzzz"

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I wanted to go with Dish Networks originally.  They carry UCTV (the
last remaining educational TV station), but DirecTV didn't.  However,
I have to shoot through a hole in the trees to see 101.  No view of
any of the other birds as they're either behind the trees|hills, or
require placing a 2nd dish in an awkward location to go through the
hole:
<http://802.11junk.com/jeffl/pics/DBS/index.html
The photos were taken during the previous solar outage, where the sun
gets behind the satellite and temporarily trashes reception.


--
Jeff Liebermann     jeffl@cruzio.com
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann     AE6KS    831-336-2558

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast

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I've been with DISH for four years.  In that time, they've had to replace a
DVR at least five times and they still suck; freezes, lost sound sync, dropped
picture, and all.  That's with a perfect sky!  When it rains there's a 50/50
chance we'll lose signal for at least some period.  I have *none* of that with
DTV (a big thunderstorm caused a LOS for maybe five minutes, once).  I like
the DVR setup much better, too, though I don't have a "Hopper".

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast
On Sun, 26 Aug 2012 20:28:18 -0400, "krw@att.bizzzzzzzzzzzz"

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I've gone through 2 receivers and am now on my 2nd DirecTV DVR.  The
first two receivers had serious sensitivity issues and an incredibly
slow remote control response time.  The first DVR developed lousy
noises from the Seagate SATA drive.  Rather than have it fixed, I
opted for a better model.  I wanted to get the HD model, but without
the HD service.  However, they wanted $100 for handling and another 2
year contract extension, so I declined.

Incidentally, when I hear symptoms like the one's you describe, I
usually assume that the dish mounting is loose, the dish misaligned,
the coax is soaked with water, the connectors are falling apart, or
various combinations of these.  It's not unusual for me to find a dish
that has very loose lag screws into the beam or a flimsy pipe.  
<
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3Xd2xIsUxQ

I've also seen LNB's full of water.  I used to do some rather
profitable work cleaning up the mess after the installer put in his
allocation of 1.0 hrs maximum installation time.  I have an ancient
Sathawk 3000 meter which is a big help.  Dish alignment has to be
within 0.5 degrees, which is really tricky.  The bigger dishes are
even more critical, especially since there are about 8 birds scattered
around each major (101-119) 3 degree slot.

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Note the photos at:
<http://802.11junk.com/jeffl/pics/DBS/index.html
The LNB is a hand picked 1.7dB NF device.  The dish is an 80cm
diameter dish.  The added 4-5dB gain from the larger dish gives me a
much better rain fade margin.  Rain fade in Santa Cruz CA runs about
3dB but can climb to 6dB with thick clouds, rain, and soaked tree
leafs.  I have an even larger 1 meter dish which I have used in the
past that works even better.  The problem is that the dish is
sufficiently large that even a mild breeze will move it across my flat
roof.

Incidentally, an easy way to see how much rain fade your system can
handle is to put a wet towel (absorber) in front of the dish. Covering
half the dish is 6dB.  1/4th of the dish area is about 3dB loss.  This
also works for wi-fi links.


--
Jeff Liebermann     jeffl@cruzio.com
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann     AE6KS    831-336-2558

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast

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Nope. After we went through the third DVR within a couple of months, I
insisted that they give me a *new* one, not one that's been recycled and not
fixed.  They had a technician come out to deliver it (evidently they always
ship out "refurbs" but the installers have new ones, also).  He went through
the entire system and may have replaced the LNB, as well.  He was mucking
around with it for quite a while.  Nope, still happens.

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Good idea.  The DISH dish is at ground level.  The DTV dish is hanging off the
deck. Both are pretty easy to get to.  BTW, half is 3dB.


Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast
On 8/26/2012 5:17 PM, Jeff Liebermann wrote:
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I got that Channel Master dish off of Craigs. It's a nice one. I think
the company has been sold once or twice. It was an Andrews product, then
some other company bought it out. When you have to compete with Chinese
junk, a molded fiberglass dish isn't very competitive.


Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast

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Did you get the DVR? How much a month? How many TVs.

--
charles

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast
On Mon, 27 Aug 2012 17:10:43 -0800, ctbishop@earthlink.net (Charles Bishop)
wrote:

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Yes, it's fantastic; far better than the DISH DVR (not Hopper) and any cable
DVR I've ever had.

Don't remember how much I pay.  The cost structure is impossible to decode and
I haven't looked at the bill lately.

Three TVs, two HDTV, one not.  The non-HD TV box can't access the DVR so it
can only show what's on now.


Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast
On Sat, 25 Aug 2012 21:25:14 -0700, Jeff wrote:

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Beautiful closeup, by the way!


Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast
On Sat, 25 Aug 2012 08:20:22 -0700, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

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Hi Jeff,
Thanks for the advice. You're a wonderful local resource!

I picked up a 10' length of 1" (ID) EMT conduit today (they don't have
any shorter lengths). I'll cut it about ten inches long, and push it in
about four inches and drill a crosswise hole in the mounting to bolt the
pipe into the J arm.

I might not even bolt it into the J arm if it feels sturdy.

Then I'll lag bolt (screw) it into the edge of the wood roof beams, which
should work. The trick is that they're forty feet up in the air (due to
the hillside being very steep at the fault line). I 'was' going to use
the balcony but this rocketdish is huuuuge!

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Up here in the Santa Cruz Mountains, we'd ditch everything for cable; but
it's just not in the cards yet (even though we're practically in Silicon
Valley - you'd think we'd be wired!).

While nobody would even think of HugesNet (Ku band), a few neighbors have
started their two-year contract with Viasat Exede (Ka band). It's FAST,
about 12 to 18 Mbps down. Much slower up. But you just can't change the
latencies of 700ms to almost a second!

Even the guys on the two-year Viasat contracts are adding WiFi dishes so
that they have a backup line-of-sight system.  The WISPs out here are all
good guys. They let me, for example, keep my dish pointing to them as an
emergency backup, just in case my other WISP goes down (which is frequent
with the winds & power outages around here). We all have backup
generators and the WISPS have battery backup - but it's for naught when
the antenna blows down.

I've mounted a few radio antenna but this new Rocketdish antenna & Rocket
M2 radio is the BIGGEST HEAVIEST I've ever mounted - so it's more of a
mechanical problem than the planar and smaller parabolic antennas I've
had in the past.

The biggest problem now is the 40-foot drop should I fall off the ladder!
:)

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast
On Sun, 26 Aug 2012 08:32:02 +0000 (UTC), "J.G."

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Ugly, but functional.  If you don't want to weld the two pipes
together, think about using epoxy or other glue.  However, I would
weld as the thermal expansion and contraction will eventually crack
the glue joint.

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You can't directly bolt it to the J mount.  If you run a bolt or two
through both pipes, you're likely to crush the pipes when tightened.
You'll need to cram a spacer inside the 1" EMT to allow the bolt to be
properly tightened.  Two small bolts, such as what's at the bottom of
the J mount will also work, but you'll have a difficult time fishing
it into the middle of the assembly.

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Please remember that you have but one life to give for your internet
access.

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I'm familiar with the situation.  When the county renewed the contract
with Comcast last year, they were forced to add service to several
marginal areas.  Basically, anyone that complained sufficiently loudly
to the county got service.  Those that didn't, such as most of the
summit area, got nothing.  This should be a clue as to how things are
done.  Next chance is July 2014.
<http://64.175.136.240/sirepub/cache/2/cfp1hr55o2tzyzburhwfgxvn/350276908262012083128615.PDF

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I have customers and accomplices with the same situation in the Aptos
hills.  Exede (Wild Blue) is slightly slower in the Aptos area because
it's at the border of the spot beam.  It also wanders a bit, varying
somewhat with what I guess is signal strength.  I've been doing remote
maintenance (using Teamviewer) to several Exede systems.  There's a
bit of a delay, but since it's a very constant delay, it's easy to
accommodate.  VoIP requires saying "over" at the end of each
"transmission", but is totally functional.  For fun, I called Exede
customer service via VoIP.  No problems.  Here's another users
experience:
<http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r26978267-Exede-Exede-VOIP-via-OBi110-with-Google-Voice-is-outstandi
The big question is whether the customer can dump AT&T POTS in favor
of VoIP via Exede.  The jury is still out but I'm lobbying for pulling
the plug.

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I did a 50 ladder climb to the 3rd floor to realign a HughesNet dish
on a tile roof.  I'll never do that again.  No problem once on the
roof, but the ladder was really bouncy.  Later, I was told that the
correct way was to tie a 20ft ladder at midpoint to form a bipod to
stabilize the ladder.

If you're not sure of yourself, throw a heavy climbing rope (11mm)
over the top of the roof and down to the ground on the opposite side.
Tie it to a tree or something that will take your weight.  Borrow a
sit harness (not just a belt) and tie yourself in.  If you can't
handle the knots, get a rescue ascender/descender such as:
<http://www.sherrilltree.com/Professional-Gear/Ascenders-Descenders
There should be plenty of tree climbers, wood butchers, or arborists
in the area.  Bug me if you want names.

The hard part is not going to be mounting the dish.  It's going to be
aiming and aligning the dish.  Unless you're tied into the rafters, I
don't think the J-mount tied to the eaves is going to be strong
enough.

Don't forget to waterproof the exposed connectors.  I wrap them with
teflon tape, and then cover the teflon tape with electrical tape.  A
layer of clear coat acrylic paint (Krlyon) for UV protection and to
keep the tape from unraveling in the sun.

Can't you find a better or easier location?  Something at the roof
peak would be easier to work with.

--
Jeff Liebermann     jeffl@cruzio.com
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann     AE6KS    831-336-2558

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast
On Sun, 26 Aug 2012 08:53:01 -0700, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

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I'm going to circulate THAT at the next local homeowners meeting to see
if we can get everyone to complain!

Maybe that's all we need to get cable in the mountains!

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast
On Sun, 26 Aug 2012 08:53:01 -0700, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

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While the neighbors who have added Exede are happy with the speed, and
they knew about the latency problem beforehand, the one thing that will
kill them is the bandwidth caps.

WISPs out here typically do not limit bandwidth.


Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast

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Don't know what your Verzon coverage is like, but they've been rolling out LTE
across the country. Once that is in place, Fusion is a viable alternative to
satellite. Speed's about the same and you still have to deal with caps, but
pricing is less and the latency is much lower.

Re: Home mounting of WiFi antenna - advice sought for a too-short antenna mast

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I noticed that 3G areas are quickly being converted to 4G.  It's still
unstable in many areas (reverting to 3G, or nothing) but it's certainly a move
in the right direction.  Do they make a 4G access point for an entire house,
either 4G to WiFi or wired?  Something that could have an antenna optimally
placed?  It gets expensive if every device needs its own service and often
data service inside a house is spotty.
 

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