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Re: Looking for dish information

Bob McElligott wrote:

> Can anyone recommend a good source for parabolic dishes (raw) for use with
> Mode S.  What is the smallest dish size that will achieve good result on
> Mode L?  Most books I read rarely mention nothing under 1 meter.

    Depending on what size you are looking for here are three sources that are
generally free.  For a 6 to 10 foot dish, look for someone who has retired
their C-band TVRO system in favor of Ku-band DSS, and would generally be more
than happy to have you take their "big" dish out of their yard.  The second is
with the demise of PrimeStar, those systems are generally abandoned in the
field and are usually free for the asking.  These are (at least around here) 2
x 3 foot offset fed dishes.  I have one up now for S-band and another will be
delivered to me next time that friend gets to town.
    The third one (and I'm going to be VERY explicit about this - DO NOT DO
THIS WITHOUT PERMISSION!!!!) is that it's not at all uncommon for commercial
radio system (2 way land mobile) and microwave systems to be retired and have
the equipment removed, but the antennas abandoned.  Site owners will often let
you remove idled antennas and keep whatever you take down.  Make sure you have
the site owners permission before climbing any tower or removing any
antennas.  Fully comply with any equipment or insurance requirements they
impose.  Remember that in this sue happy society, a building owner may require
certain things to reduce his liability.  And obviously climb a tower ONLY if
you are properly equipped and qualified.  Last year I was able to remove two 1
meter dishes from a radio site that had been used for a 900 MHz link.  One is
now being used for a 2.4 GHz ATV link and the other I will be using for 3.4
GHz ATV here at my house.  Over the years I have collected quite a number of
antennas that I have been able to use.  On the other hand, I am a part time
professional tower climber, so I get to see idled antennas at radio sites more
then most hams.  Just in case you missed it, I'm going to say this one more

Jim Walls - K6CCC
626-302-8515    FAX  626-302-7501
AMSAT member 32537 / WSWSS member 395

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