Originally Posted by JB Antennaman
One of the differences between just being able to put up a antenna and knowing what you are doing - is experiencing what you just experienced.
Usually the good thrust bearing costs more then the rotor its self.
Yeah, I'm sure there is a difference between someone that, as you say, " is just able to put up an antenna" and someone that "knows what he/she's doing."
I'll add though, that are areas between those two stated levels of skill and knowledge.
I've worked 40 years as a metal fabricator, welder, diesel and heavy equipment mechanic, housebuilder, and electrician. My point is, I'm not clueless to things electrical or mechanical. I can do more than just bolt an antenna to a wall and hope for the best.
That being said, I don't take apart a new antenna rotator to see what's inside. I bought them hoping they were reasonably suited for the job intended, and now think that perhaps they are not. If I was in the business, doing this stuff everyday, then I'd probably be more aware of what products are inferior, and what products are superior. It's one reason why I use this forum.
I don't have any problems with mast strength nor any problems with mounts. I use HD electical 2" EMT galvanized pipe, not cheap 1 1/4" thin-wall antenna mast tubes. All my mounts are extremely HD, and not cheap out-of-the-box deals. The only weak points I'm having problems with are as already stated. #1 - the rotator assemblies themselves, and #2 the flimsy construction of the Winegard 8200 antenna.
In regard to the what you stated about drilling, and tapping for installing a bolt. Unless I'm not understanding you correctly, aren't you decribing the installation of a lock bolt? If so, it defeats the purpose of having the rotator. Maybe I don't fully understand as you described? Maybe it's just to take up extra side-thrust?
In regard to the installation of an upper support bearing? I have no idea why you think it would be expensive. I can buy a good sealed 2" ID (or 1.25" ID) ball bearing assembly, with dual lock collars, and a cast-iron pillow block for $15. The pillow block has four holes to attach guy wires, and that sealed ball bearing would probably last forever if installed properly, with no freeze-ups. The $15 cost is not an issue to me, but the work of taking down the antenna and installing it IS something I'm not in the mood to do right now.
On the same subject, I just came back from Canada and saw many tripod antenna roof mounts with upper support bearings which looked like a really good idea. Bearing on top near the antenna, and the rotator below.
On the subject of DOM tubing metal, I use it often and an well aware of it. Very commonly used for making large bushings in metal fabrication with bucket loaders, backhoe buckets , assorted heavy equipment, etc.