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Suggestions For Improving Mount


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33 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   Beerstalker

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Posted 27 May 2012 - 01:21 PM

My Slimline dish has been installed like this ever since I moved into the house that I am living in now about 3 years ago. Lately we seem to be having issues with losing our signal when it gets really windy (which it does out here a lot). The other day I noticed when I was mowing that the dish is getting moved by the wind a decent amount when the wind is strong. The big 3.5" OD pole is not moving at all, but the J mont pole is bending in the wind and allowing the dish to move.

I'm wondering if anyone has any ideas on a good way to stiffen this up. I thought about using a monopole between the J mount and the 3.5" tube, but I don't know if that would help much with the side winds which seem to be causing the most issues. Is there maybe some kind of reducer sleeve that can go on the top of the 3.5" pipe and reduce it down to 2" so I could mount the dish right on top? I also thought about maybe putting a 2" pole down the inside of the 3.5" pole and then either bolting them together, or filling the pole with concrete to hold them together.

Any other ideas?

I don't really want to have to put in a different pole if I don't absolutely have to.

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Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn’t drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, "It is better that I drink this beer and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver."
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#2 OFFLINE   Davenlr

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Posted 27 May 2012 - 01:24 PM

Use a double U clamp to clamp a 2" OD pipe to the 3.5" Pipe, or have a muffler shop weld you a reducer that will slip over the top.

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#3 OFFLINE   samrs

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Posted 27 May 2012 - 05:13 PM

I'd recommend using a DirecTv approved pole and cable. Mine hasn't moved since it was installed, years ago.

Other than that go the reducer route like Dave suggested. Make sure its well welded.;)
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#4 OFFLINE   Beerstalker

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Posted 01 June 2012 - 01:34 PM

Don't really want to have to have 2 different poles sticking up in my yard to mow around, I've got too much stuff to mow around already. And this old pole isn't going anywhere unless I rent a backhoe.

I think for now I'm leaning toward trying my pole down the middle idea. I figure if it doesn't work that well I can just cut it off with a sawzall or angle grinder and then go with the custom adapter from a muffler shop idea you guys mentioned. I actually modeled the adapter and made a drawing for it, but haven't sent it out for a quote yet.

As far as mixing the concrete how do you guys normally do it. Put the pole in, dump in the dry mix, and then add water? I figured I could use a clamp to hold the 2" dia pole in place and then pour in the dry mix and then use a hose to add water.

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Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn’t drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, "It is better that I drink this beer and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver."
-by Jack Handy

#5 OFFLINE   Wire Nut

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Posted 01 June 2012 - 02:28 PM

Concrete in the pole would not be a permanent solution. Even that super-tough 3.5" tube will flex slightly in the wind, causing the concrete (about 1/2" on either side if the 3.5" tube has 1/4" walls) to turn into dust fairly quickly. The adapter you posted would be the best solution. You could cut the existing mast down and put the longer straight piece in the 3.5" tube, wedge some 7/8" unistrut in beside it lenghtwise, and put a couple 1/2" bolts through the assembly.

#6 OFFLINE   TigersFanJJ

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Posted 02 June 2012 - 02:25 PM

I would use a rail mount.

Here it is.

#7 OFFLINE   wallfishman

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Posted 02 June 2012 - 03:44 PM

Don't really want to have to have 2 different poles sticking up in my yard to mow around, I've got too much stuff to mow around already. And this old pole isn't going anywhere unless I rent a backhoe.

I think for now I'm leaning toward trying my pole down the middle idea. I figure if it doesn't work that well I can just cut it off with a sawzall or angle grinder and then go with the custom adapter from a muffler shop idea you guys mentioned. I actually modeled the adapter and made a drawing for it, but haven't sent it out for a quote yet.

As far as mixing the concrete how do you guys normally do it. Put the pole in, dump in the dry mix, and then add water? I figured I could use a clamp to hold the 2" dia pole in place and then pour in the dry mix and then use a hose to add water.


Put a 2 inch pipe down there and either drill some bolts thrlough everything or just self tap it.

#8 OFFLINE   Drucifer

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Posted 02 June 2012 - 05:33 PM

A rubber mat glued to the back of the bracket would make the contact with the pole less slippery. You could also try putting a large bot thru the bracket and pole. That would stop any spinning motion.
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#9 OFFLINE   peds48

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Posted 02 June 2012 - 05:51 PM

instead of jury-rigging, how about doing things the right way........

I see no reason why a DirecTV pole mount cannot be installed right next to where the big pole is.....

#10 OFFLINE   TigersFanJJ

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Posted 02 June 2012 - 10:13 PM

instead of jury-rigging, how about doing things the right way........

I see no reason why a DirecTV pole mount cannot be installed right next to where the big pole is.....


Right next to the original pole is probably a foot or more away once you factor in the concrete that is underground. PITA to keep the grass trimmed up between the two. The Directv approved rail mount I suggested works great for his application and is hardly jury-rigging.

#11 OFFLINE   Beerstalker

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 09:35 PM

A rubber mat glued to the back of the bracket would make the contact with the pole less slippery. You could also try putting a large bot thru the bracket and pole. That would stop any spinning motion.


The bracket doesn't spin on the pole at all. The J-mount is bending in the wind because it doesn't have any monopoles attached to it to help support it and keep it from bending. That is why they are supposed to use monopoles with the J mount. It used to be fine, but this spring we are starting to have a lot more issue with losing signal when the wind picks up. I don't know if this spring has just been that much windier, or if the J-mount metal has started to fatigue and has now lost some of it's strenght so it's bending easier and further.

Right next to the original pole is probably a foot or more away once you factor in the concrete that is underground. PITA to keep the grass trimmed up between the two. The Directv approved rail mount I suggested works great for his application and is hardly jury-rigging.


Correct, it would be about 2 foot away because of the concrete, and it would look pretty silly. Hey I've got this big strong pole that used to hold up an 8' diameter dish but it's not strong enough for my little DirecTV dish so now I need to install a 2" pole instead :)

The rail mount you posted is a good suggestion, I hadn't seen that before. Do you know if it comes with U bolts or not? Does it come with a lenght of 2" dia pipe for the dish to mount to? Solid Signal's description is kind of lacking. It says something about a 4" mast, but that doesn't seem long enough to mount to this L bracket and have the dish mount on it. I would think it would have to be at least 8-10" long. I've got a couple leads on getting my adapter made, but depending on how much that would end up costing this bracket might be a better solution. I'm suprised nobody makes a mount like I drew up though. There has to be a lot of people that had the big old satellites that are now DirecTV customers, you would think this would be a popular/strong way to mount the dish.

Edited by Beerstalker, 05 June 2012 - 09:45 PM.

Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn’t drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, "It is better that I drink this beer and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver."
-by Jack Handy

#12 OFFLINE   davring

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 09:50 PM

Had the same issue with my fathers, mounted almost exactly the same way. The u-bolts weren't the cause of movement, it was an actual radial twisting of the pole itself. Six foot of pole can twist a fair amount. I lowered it almost to the ground and it has been great for over five years. It naturally increases the chance of getting bumped by the mower or the grandkids.

#13 OFFLINE   samrs

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 02:14 AM

The rail mount you posted is a good suggestion, I hadn't seen that before. Do you know if it comes with U bolts or not? Does it come with a lenght of 2" dia pipe for the dish to mount to? Solid Signal's description is kind of lacking.


The rail mount we use comes with everything except directions. :scratch:

The mast is four feet(can be used for a pole mount in a pinch). ;)

There are a vast assortment of bolts and plates, no U bolts.
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#14 OFFLINE   dishrich

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 08:55 AM

Beer - just get one of these quick pipe adaptors, that are specifically made for this situation:

http://www.wiredatho...e-adapter-2-od/

(These have been made in 1 5/8 versions for years now; these 2" versions a couple years...)

I've used them many a time; quick, cheap, simple, work great - what's not to like.
Don't make things harder than they have to be... ;) ;)

Edited by dishrich, 06 June 2012 - 09:17 AM.


#15 OFFLINE   Wire Nut

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 09:19 AM

Beer - just get one of these quick pipe adaptors, that are specially made for this situation:

http://www.wiredatho...e-adapter-2-od/

(These have been made in 1 5/8 versions for years now; these 2" versions a couple years...)

I've used them many a time; quick, cheap, simple, work great - what's not to like.
Don't make things harder than they have to be... ;) ;)

I've used these too, the 1-5/8 I barely trust with an 18" dish, much less a slimine monster. 2" is a little tougher but they just thread the steel for the bolts on the clamp, no hardened steel nut there, way too soft IMO just before you think it's tight enough it strips out. Anymore, I only use these when there's a welder handy to make it a secure mount. Oh, and good luck getting that SOB level after tightening the bolts:)

#16 OFFLINE   Beerstalker

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 03:25 PM

In the launch vehicle/spacecraft structural dynamics universe, the saying goes "the differential equations are governed by the boundary conditions", just another way of saying your system is only as strong as the weakest link. Your overriding governing boundary condition is the dish mount bracket (flat) to 3.5" pole (round). Imagine standing/balancing each foot on opposite ends on a board laid perpendicular across a large water pipe. This is the "racking" that your system is experiencing, and is responsible for nearly all of the resultant displacement. There are numerous ways to add a flat mounting surface to the 3.5" pole. Welding a flat plate to the top would be the easiest. If you weld a flat plate to the side, you need to weld gussets from the back of the plate to the pole. Figure out the best/easiest way for you to construct a flat mount on the pole, and mount your dish mount bracket to it.

Edit: http://www.sterenusa...ite-dish-mounts
Here is a mount I've used which is great for the right application.
It only clamps up to a maximum of 3", so it would not fit on your pole, but even if it did, you do NOT want to clamp it directly onto anything not flat.
(same reason as before).
The clamp is great for attaching to rails with rectangular cross sections, not for round ones.
You could use this clamp by welding a ~12" long 2" x 2" solid bar vertically down the side (or on top) of the pole, then attaching the clamp to it.
Still, unless you need the feature of removability, I would defer to not adding this, or any another, mount.


I'm a mechanical engineer, I'm plenty familiar with statics, dynamics and racking. That is not the issue here. I have stood there and watched the J mount bend in the wind without the foot slipping on the 3.5" pole at all. I originally thought that the U bolts slipping was the issue and figued if I put a couple straight bolts through the flat foot and pipe it would stop twisting. That was what I was actually out there looking to do when I noticed the J mount bending.

Also if this was really the issue almost every DirecTV customer out there would have problems with it. All of the pole mounts and J mounts are mounted by putting a round clamp around a round pole and tightening it down if you look at them. I have seen some techs put a self tapping screw in afterward to keep them from turning but I've seen many more dishes without it.

The rail mount we use comes with everything except directions. :scratch:

The mast is four feet(can be used for a pole mount in a pinch). ;)

There are a vast assortment of bolts and plates, no U bolts.


OK that makes more sense. I did a search for the part number from SolidSignal and found the same thing listed on eBay, but it showed a 4 foot pole and 2 L brackets. That makes a lot more sense. Seems like the SolidSignal description is just wrong. I'm guessing someone made the common mistake of thinking 4' (4 foot) meant 4" (4 inches). Still concerns me it lists it as only having one L bracket though. For $22 I'll probably end up ordering one and hoping the listing is wrong, unless I can get my adapter made cheaper (my dad says he might be able to get it done for free).

Beer - just get one of these quick pipe adaptors, that are specifically made for this situation:

http://www.wiredatho...e-adapter-2-od/

(These have been made in 1 5/8 versions for years now; these 2" versions a couple years...)

I've used them many a time; quick, cheap, simple, work great - what's not to like.
Don't make things harder than they have to be... ;) ;)


Unless I'm missing something that won't work. That adapter has a 2" OD, so it won't fit over the 3.5" pole I have to mount it on. I'm pretty sure thats the one meant to go over a 1.85" dia pole from the 18" dish so you can mount the Slimline dish on the same pole. I actually have one of those in my barn right now, but it won't work for me.

Edited by Beerstalker, 06 June 2012 - 03:35 PM.

Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn’t drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, "It is better that I drink this beer and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver."
-by Jack Handy

#17 OFFLINE   Wire Nut

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 04:57 PM

Unless I'm missing something that won't work. That adapter has a 2" OD, so it won't fit over the 3.5" pole I have to mount it on. I'm pretty sure thats the one meant to go over a 1.85" dia pole from the 18" dish so you can mount the Slimline dish on the same pole. I actually have one of those in my barn right now, but it won't work for me.

The mount you are referring to is designed just for mounting to existing C-band poles. The slot in the bottom of the mount slips over the lip of the existing 3-1/2" tube and the bolts clamp it down. It is iffy at the best of times, but would work and is a better solution than the U-bolts you have now.

#18 OFFLINE   Floyd

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 05:36 PM

Most of the problem is that there aren't any wind braces. I doubt that the large pole is flexing enough to cause a problem.
Here's a simple solution:
1. order a set of wind braces.
2. Go to home depot and get two 3-foot(or so) sections of 1" to 2" angle iron. You might be able to find the kind that is galvanized/zinc-plated and perforated.
3. Cut slots in the center of the angle irons segments so that it will bend around the pole and bolt them to the pole. You obviously will have bolts at the ends of the angle iron, and you can drill & tap 4 holes to hold the angle iron pieces onto the pole.
4. Attach the wind braces to the ends of the angle iron you mounted on the pole.

This should work almost as well as a roof or wall mount. But before you go to all this trouble, have someone watch your signal strength(transponder) screen and then flex your dish mount to see if it is centered on the aim point. If it is off-center the wind may be pushing it off the boresight aim point.

Edited by Floyd, 06 June 2012 - 05:41 PM.


#19 OFFLINE   dishrich

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 07:01 PM

Unless I'm missing something that won't work. That adapter has a 2" OD, so it won't fit over the 3.5" pole I have to mount it on.


The mount you are referring to is designed just for mounting to existing C-band poles. The slot in the bottom of the mount slips over the lip of the existing 3-1/2" tube and the bolts clamp it down.


As already stated this WILL work; again, it was specifically made for retrofits on C-band pipes. Skywalker still makes these & as I already said, I've done this several times & have yet to have a problem with them.

I'm pretty sure thats the one meant to go over a 1.85" dia pole from the 18" dish so you can mount the Slimline dish on the same pole.


I'm well aware of those (which I would NEVER use myself; those smaller J-pipes were NOT meant to support anything like a slimline :eek: ); this one is NOT that particular style.

It is iffy at the best of times, but would work and is a better solution than the U-bolts you have now.


Agree, & it's probably less expensive (& time consuming) than some of these other suggestions; the OP should give this a shot first.

#20 OFFLINE   davejacobson

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Posted 07 June 2012 - 10:14 AM

It always amazes me how people will try so hard to do something the wrong way. Then complain how it dosent work. IMHO put in the correct pole cemented in then remove the wrong pole.
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