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How to mount a new antenna?

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Old 02-16-2008, 07:54 PM   #1
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Default How to mount a new antenna?

Hi. First, let me say thanks for all the great info I've read here about antennas. I've been lurking and learning for awhile.

I wish to install an antenna but I'm concerned how to do it, without making the whole setup unaffordable. I want to do it right, but I need to keep the price down. I would prefer to do this myself, and I think an antenna truss/tower will be too expensive for me right now. And my SO would veto it anyway.

I have a two story home, with a gabled metal roof (98368, facing Canadian border). I would like to add "The perscription" antenna or a slightly smaller (VHF) version of it. We get high winds. I'm less than a mile from the water facing the San Juan Islands. Currently I pick up a few of canadian stations (poorly) with indoor rabbit ears, I believe from Victoria (NW), and Ch 10 from Bellingham.(N/NE) I'm about 40-60 miles from several cities, in different directions.

It's been suggested that I have the bottom antenna 10' from the metal roof, and the UHF antenna 4' above that. The roof peak is about 27' above the ground with a 17" eave/overhang. The eave is too flimsy to mount to.
My current thinking is to raise several sections of 2" galvanized steel pipe, threaded with couplings, to 35' (plus 2' into a concrete filled hole). With a pair of 18" wall mounts for support, 4'-6' apart, near the roof peak. Then mount the rotator, with bearing support 2' overlap, on 1 1/2" pipe, 8' long. With the VHF 2' up (clearance for guy wire off the bearing support) and UHF 4' above that.
Is this reasonable? Do I need to guy wire support the upper bearing support too?

Ideally, my significant other would rather not have the pipe come down to the ground or guy wires, but I'm guessing this may be nessesary if my plan is even possible.
Is this too high to use galvanized pipe? Will this be safe under high wind gusts?
Will this work? Or how would you guys do it? What do you think of my plan?

I plan on using "The perscription" fringe antenna, except subsitute a Wineguard HD 4053P due to price/availability. Currently just analog tv use, but I plan to upgrade to digital/HD in the future.

Also what length of grounding rod do you suggest? Sandy soil, but it's usually very damp. I intend to tie it to the eletrical ground just around the corner, about 20' away.


Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-16-2008, 08:06 PM   #2
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If you are talking about 2" schedule 40 pipe it will be plenty strong for your wind issues. Much stronger than regular antenna masting. As far as the bearing guys, if you have very high wind loadings they would not be a bad idea either, imo.

As far as the ground rod goes, if you are that close to the house ground, I wouldn't say you need one. Just run your ground wires to the house ground.
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Old 02-16-2008, 09:00 PM   #3
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This would be very expensive(unless the pipe is free) and very difficult to erect unless you have a bucket truck handy.You don't realize how heavy and unwieldy this stuff can be.

I would suggest a tripod mounted on the roof(properly) with a 10 element highbander/XG91 on 5ft of mast above the rotor and no support bearing(you don't need one).And ,of course a 7777 preamp.The highbander will still pick up 2-6 fairly well for the short time they'll be on the air.
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Old 02-17-2008, 12:32 AM   #4
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This would be very expensive(unless the pipe is free) and very difficult to erect unless you have a bucket truck handy.You don't realize how heavy and unwieldy this stuff can be.

I would suggest a tripod mounted on the roof(properly) with a 10 element highbander/XG91 on 5ft of mast above the rotor and no support bearing(you don't need one).And ,of course a 7777 preamp.The highbander will still pick up 2-6 fairly well for the short time they'll be on the air.
Thanks,

Some of the pipe may be free, or very cheap. I hadn't priced any yet, but I assume it will still be much cheaper than antenna truss.
We don't want to put holes in our new metal roof, it's pretty steep and I dont want to walk on it and dent it up. I would prefer wall mounted. The eave/overhang is a little flimsy to mount on anyway.

Do you think I can just use 14' of pipe that doesnt' go all the way to the ground? 6' of pipe with the 18" wall mounts and another 8-10' above? With or without bearing.

I have rented and assembled scaffolding for other projects, I thought I might do that again to get this up safely.

I use schedule 40 and schedule 80 pipe at work (usually black iron). I'm a stage hand, we use it for lighting pipes and fly lines. Usually horizontally, not vertical.

Last edited by Ford Prefect; 02-17-2008 at 12:39 AM.
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Old 02-17-2008, 12:37 AM   #5
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As far as the ground rod goes, if you are that close to the house ground, I wouldn't say you need one. Just run your ground wires to the house ground.

That would make the ground wire almost exactly the same length as the antenna wire. That would not make me feel comfortable. I don't mind pounding an extra rod just for safety.
What is standard? 4', 6', 8'?
I have read to use solid copper 10# down, and 6# to the connect to house ground. Is that correct?

I would like it to pass any future home inspection if I ever sell the house.
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Old 02-17-2008, 06:38 AM   #6
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I would like it to pass any future home inspection if I ever sell the house.
To pass inspection the ground for the antenna must be connected to the same ground as the rest of the house. You can add a separate rod if you want, but also tie it to the house ground.

#10 wire is code

As for the flimsy eave; the force on the eave is similar with the pipe into the ground and a shorter pipe with just wall mounts. I wouldn't want to go up on the roof either.

Do you know that you need that much height above your roof? have you tried different antenna heights in tvfool.com?
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Old 02-17-2008, 02:30 PM   #7
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If you want to use a ground rod, the 4' will be fine. #10 from the grounding block and antenna to the rod and #6 between the rod and the house ground.
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Old 02-17-2008, 05:06 PM   #8
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Thanks,

Some of the pipe may be free, or very cheap. I hadn't priced any yet, but I assume it will still be much cheaper than antenna truss.
We don't want to put holes in our new metal roof, it's pretty steep and I dont want to walk on it and dent it up. I would prefer wall mounted. The eave/overhang is a little flimsy to mount on anyway.

Do you think I can just use 14' of pipe that doesnt' go all the way to the ground? 6' of pipe with the 18" wall mounts and another 8-10' above? With or without bearing.

I have rented and assembled scaffolding for other projects, I thought I might do that again to get this up safely.

I use schedule 40 and schedule 80 pipe at work (usually black iron). I'm a stage hand, we use it for lighting pipes and fly lines. Usually horizontally, not vertical.
If you go the short mast route you'll have to engineer/fabricate a support for the vertical load 18 in,or so away from the side of the house,to clear the overhang at the top.If you can get the pipe cheap it'll be easier to go clear to the ground for support and bracket every 10ft or so.You might want to check out one of the new Winegard highband/UHF antennas to further reduce the windload at the top.You should be ok at 5ft above the metal roof.
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Old 02-17-2008, 07:40 PM   #9
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I was planing on using a set of 18" wall mounts from ChannelMaster (I'm not allowed to link a pic or link) lag bolted into 2 x 6" in the wall. Would that be sufficient?

I see now they say 1 1/2" pipe max.

I was planning on 10' clearance based on suggestions I had read here about metal roofs.
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Old 02-18-2008, 06:45 AM   #10
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I was planing on using a set of 18" wall mounts from ChannelMaster (I'm not allowed to link a pic or link) lag bolted into 2 x 6" in the wall. Would that be sufficient?

I see now they say 1 1/2" pipe max.

I was planning on 10' clearance based on suggestions I had read here about metal roofs.
I'm not familiar with those brackets.I don't imagine they're designed to support very much vertical load.I would design the bottom support with aluminum or steel angle and have it welded up.A 14 ft mast supported 18 inches away from a wall is going to create alot of torsional force in all directions.
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Old 02-18-2008, 07:15 AM   #11
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(I'm not allowed to link a pic or link) .
http://www.starkelectronic.com/cmwalmt.htm
Model 9036.

Note that pipe sizes are not the same as OD. For instance, 1 1/4" pipe has an OD of 1 5/8". 1 5/8" is too big for most TV antenna clamps.

The steel in galvanized pipe is usually mild steel. TV masts may be stronger, or maybe not. It depends on the manufacturer.

Galvanized pipe is available in thick wall. Schedule 40 is standard. Schedule 80 is harder to find, but stronger.
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Old 02-18-2008, 08:07 AM   #12
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You may want to consider replacing the cm4228 with the 91xg.

-less weight and wind resistance on the system

-can stack the 2 antennas on a 5' heavy duty mast above the rotor with the 2 antennas 4' apart with the vhf 1 foot above the rotor. the 91 xg can be mounted on the tippity top of the mast gaining 6". will present less wind resistance.

-cut 2 pieces of pressure treated 2"x12" and lag bolt to wall support between 2 stud. lag bolt the clamp to that. about 3'-4' between each other.

- a pair of 12" wall clamp is plenty. prefer 12" over 18". I just feel 12" is sturdier.

-use 2 sections of 10' heavy duty mast bolted to the 12" clamp. with 5' heavy duty mast above the rotor

-support the mast with 2 sections of 1 1/2" conduit molded to fit and lag bolt to roof and attached to mast. you have a metal roof but would do it anyway.

I have had my system mounted this way for 24 years...and the system has never budged. The only time I had a problem was when I had the "brilliant" idea to try the cm4228 in place of the 91xg a few years ago. Had to replace everything from rotor above...after the first wind storm.

I did not mount the system at the peak but at the left corner of the home a few studs in . I did not have enough support at the peaks. The rotor is about 10' above roof. the vhf on the bottom clears the peak by several feet. The peak angle is shallow though.

The key thing is to use the 91 xg in place of the cm4228 and you would not need as much structure support. That intall is so strong with the conduit that I can rest a ladder against the back and it does not budge. Plus I have something to lean against and protect myself up there.

Your only issue is the metal roof.
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Last edited by Rick0725; 02-18-2008 at 08:27 AM.
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Old 02-19-2008, 09:35 AM   #13
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Note that pipe sizes are not the same as OD. For instance, 1 1/4" pipe has an OD of 1 5/8". 1 5/8" is too big for most TV antenna clamps.
You had mentioned using a rotor bearing as a guy mount, I can say from experience that the CM rotor mount most commonly available won't take that large a pipe, as well as the wall brackets. I used 1-1/4" EMT electrical tubing and had to extensively file the internal casting "flash" line to get the EMT to go through and it is quite a bit smaller diameter than 1-1/2 plumbing pipe. Depending on which companies wall mounts you have the "U" bracket width and mounting holes can be an issue. The old time TV brands are generally bigger and beefier than the RS or home store offerings. To use plumbing trade sizes you will need to investigate electrical and plumbing mounts like the "C" channels and clips they sell at home/hardware stores that are made to handle the "trade size".
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Old 02-19-2008, 11:50 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick0725 View Post
You may want to consider replacing the cm4228 with the 91xg.

-less weight and wind resistance on the system

-can stack the 2 antennas on a 5' heavy duty mast above the rotor with the 2 antennas 4' apart with the vhf 1 foot above the rotor. the 91 xg can be mounted on the tippity top of the mast gaining 6". will present less wind resistance.

-cut 2 pieces of pressure treated 2"x12" and lag bolt to wall support between 2 stud. lag bolt the clamp to that. about 3'-4' between each other.

- a pair of 12" wall clamp is plenty. prefer 12" over 18". I just feel 12" is sturdier.

-use 2 sections of 10' heavy duty mast bolted to the 12" clamp. with 5' heavy duty mast above the rotor

-support the mast with 2 sections of 1 1/2" conduit molded to fit and lag bolt to roof and attached to mast. you have a metal roof but would do it anyway.

I have had my system mounted this way for 24 years...and the system has never budged. The only time I had a problem was when I had the "brilliant" idea to try the cm4228 in place of the 91xg a few years ago. Had to replace everything from rotor above...after the first wind storm.

I did not mount the system at the peak but at the left corner of the home a few studs in . I did not have enough support at the peaks. The rotor is about 10' above roof. the vhf on the bottom clears the peak by several feet. The peak angle is shallow though.

The key thing is to use the 91 xg in place of the cm4228 and you would not need as much structure support. That intall is so strong with the conduit that I can rest a ladder against the back and it does not budge. Plus I have something to lean against and protect myself up there.

Your only issue is the metal roof.
I've used EMT for custom bracing and it works really well.I can't imagine using 1-1/2",but 3/4"(about 1"OD) works good and can be flattened in a vice easily.A good application for the OP as there's normally nowhere to place a third guy on a gable end of a house,unless you have a handy tree or outbuilding away from the house.I'm not sure about your recommendation of 12" mast supports.That's about 5" short of clearing the 17" soffit overhang?
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Old 02-19-2008, 09:16 PM   #15
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Here's another idea to mess with your head.Rather than trying to support a mast 18" away from an outside wall to clear the overhang,use a normal Gable-mount kit and drill a hole thru the overhang for the mast to go up through it.Use a 10ft 1-1/4" stick of rigid conduit with 3ft above the roof.The coax can be fed down thru the conduit for a cleaner look.Here's a link to a roof flange...

http://www.galesburgelectric.com/sto...cat=575&page=1
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