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Antenna for Chattanooga

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Old 07-20-2009, 12:18 PM   #1
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Default Antenna for Chattanooga

I live in Chattanooga, TN, and I just got my converter box a few weeks ago. I can pickup 15 stations with rabbit ears: 3.1, 3.2, 9.1, 9.2, 12.1, 23.1, 23.2, 23.3, 23.4, 23.5, 42.1, 45.1, 45.2, 61.1, and 61.2.

I want to pick up Georgia PBS (Channel 18.1, etc.), but it's tower is 35 miles in the opposite direction from most of my stations.

What antenna do I need for an attic installation to keep my current stations and also get GPB? I have attached my TVFool profile. Thanks in advance.
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Old 07-20-2009, 12:59 PM   #2
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As you probably know, putting the antenna outside will be tremendously better than an attic install.

Never the less, WNGH-DT (18.1) is on RF channel 33. I'd install a medium sized UHF only antenna pointed at WNGH and connect it into the cable from the other antenna with a jointenna tuned to channel 33.

A channel 33 jointenna is about $35 and a RS U75-R is about $35.

I prefer yagis in the attic because bow tie type antennas are more subject to multi-path which can be rampant in an attic.

Of course this is all predicated on you driving only 1 TV with this antenna. If there are more than 1 TVs a stronger antenna might be needed.
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Old 07-21-2009, 09:18 AM   #3
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I appreciate your reply. Instead of combining antennas, is there a single antenna solution? My current antenna is a pair of rabbit ears, so I would have to purchase another antenna in addition to the RS U75-R to get the stations I am currently receiving since the RS U75-R would be dedicated to channel 18.1. That is, unless I want to put the rabbit ears in the attic, which probably wouldn't work anyway. I understand that having the antenna outside is best. I have seen a Winegard HD-7078P that is broken (see pic), but cheap. Would this antenna work, and would the repair be simple (i.e. super glue)?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 07-21-2009, 10:47 AM   #4
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To thevol,

To start out, forget superglue, it may make a strong bond, but simply will not hold up to temperature expansion and contraction over time. If you want to buy such an antenna on a broken gamble to save a few bucks, you could try it, but I doubt you can repair it. So be prepared to lose all your gamble money.

Second, you have a number of strong channels in your green area if the TVFool report, within rabbit ear range, but that WBGH PBS is a bridge way too far for rabbit ears.

My feeling is that if you want WGBH in with the rest, that one small and fairly cheap combo VHF/UHF mounted outside, without a antenna rotator can get WBGH and all the stations in your green area
also. But you will need an antenna that is multidirectional rather than deep fringe and may have to play with aim some on a trial and error basis. I have a radio shack 160XR and a somewhat similar report, and am picking up stations as weak as 5NM(dB) over 55 degrees of main antenna aim plus one stronger station 180 degrees off main aim. Given the poor reputation of radio shack on this forum, I hesitate to recommend radio shack, but my results vindicate advocating something that is multidirectional. Of course the trade off
is not as much on aim gain, but you don't lose big by being off aim either. And for that matter you could try an aim right on WGBH and probably pick up your stronger channels off the back.

Nor will I bad mouth a join antenna scheme, almost any descent even home built bow tie antenna will bag WGBH in the attic, and you can get the rest with rabbit ears.

Now matter what you are gambling, and if you get all your gettable channels to come in strong on a all weather basis, you win. Which is why I tried to buy local with a store policy guarantee that I could take it back for a refund if it did not work for me.

As for the radio shack antenna, it came with the house when I bought it 16 years ago. So I am talking about the upgrades I needed to add to make it fully digital ready for my two televisions, and when I reached a point where I got all gettable channels in my TV fool report, I quit upgrading. I spent less than $50.00 for additional hardware, you could get away for less.
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Old 07-21-2009, 03:04 PM   #5
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and if you want WGBH, you are going to need about an 800 mile tall tower, since it's in Boston! LOL
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Old 07-21-2009, 04:12 PM   #6
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Ok OK Tigerbangs, you got me, I meant WNGH and not WBGH.
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Old 07-21-2009, 04:33 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thevol View Post
Instead of combining antennas, is there a single antenna solution?
Two antennas or one antenna with a rotor.

If you want to try something get a Channel Master 4221 and remove the reflector screen. This makes a bidirectional antenna. WNGH is a bit weak for a compromise antenna, but you might get lucky. If you're not lucky it's a perfect antenna for WNGH with the reflector reinstalled.
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Old 07-22-2009, 07:11 PM   #8
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I ordered the Channel Master 4221. I'll update this post after I install it. Thanks for the help guys.
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Old 07-23-2009, 05:16 PM   #9
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Unbelievable!!! I ordered the Channel Master 4221 yesterday from Amazon for $39.99 w/free shipping. It was supposed to be 5 - 9 days shipping, but it was at my house today when I got home from work. I installed it right away in my attic, but I was only getting the same channels I had before. They were all strong signals (100%) which suprised me. They were 100% even on the VHF channels 3.1, 3.2, 9.1, 9.2 and 12.1. This is supposed to be a UHF only antenna. I checked the instructions and discovered that I had the antenna facing backwards from where the station I wanted was. The bowties need to be facing the station. I went back to the attic and sweated for a few more minutes (it must be at least 1000 degrees in there this afternoon), and then I went back to scan the channels. 19 channels baby!! I got the three extra Georgia PBS channels that I wanted. They are around 50% strength, but they are not stuttering. My kids are happy because one of the channels broadcasts PBS Kids shows all day and night....almost like a free, educational Cartoon Network. Thanks so much for your help guys.
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