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Author Topic: Possible to recalibrate rotor without lowering antenna?  (Read 3266 times)
NZ5N
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« on: June 29, 2013, 11:50:18 PM »

Hi,
Some local hams came to my QTH in Slovakia and put up an HF triband beam on a 35' mast.  Only problem is that we neglected to point the antenna in the same direction that the rotor control box indicated, so the display is way off, about 150 degrees off.  The rotor is a Ham III with the CDE transmit/receive direction control box.  There is a calibrate pot that allows for about 30 degrees of adjustment, but that is not nearly enough.

Short of lowering and re-aiming the antenna, is there any way to get the control box to indicate the correct direction of the antenna?

73, Bill NZ5N/OM3BD 
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W5GNB
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« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2013, 05:59:04 AM »

From what you describe, It is probably not possible to correct the error in direction indication outside of resetting the rotor mounting or perhaps you could turn and reset the mounting of the mast somehow....

W5GNB - Gary
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KG4RUL
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« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2013, 06:24:45 AM »

If taking down the antenna is not currently feasible, why not draw out a new scale for the meter that reflects the current antenna position on the rotator.  Tape it to the meter face and you are done.
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NJ1K
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« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2013, 06:54:48 AM »

I would just turn the entire mast.  Granted, you may need to deal with relocating guy wires and such but I think sounds like it would be easier than lowering everything...
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N3HFS
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« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2013, 07:08:39 AM »

There are manuals at the hy-gain.com web site.  Click on Rotors, and pick one that matches your control box, then click on Downloads.  For example:

http://www.hy-gain.com/pdffiles/CD-45II.pdf

In this case, for the CD-45II controller, there is a calibration procedure, but it seems to only correct for minor indicator errors. 

There is also an option to change the scale from S-N-S to N-S-N using a replacement printed scale (included with new units).  As mentioned by a previous reply, this may be what you wish to use, perhaps making the scale W-E-W or similar to match your installation.

The beam mounting instructions (unfortunately?) say this:

Quote
Return the rotator to the full CW "S" position.
Mount the beam pointing South.
The coaxial cable should be looped in such a manner that it
will not foul or tangle when the beam turns around in a circle
to the full 360 degree counterclockwise position.
(The antenna rotates "S" to "F' [counterclockwise] on the first turn,
therefore slack should wrap counterclockwise around the mast.)
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NZ5N
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« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2013, 11:19:27 PM »

Thanks for the replies, I was afraid it would not be easy to fix.  Sounds like the new scale would be the easiest.

73, Bill NZ5N/OM3BD
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W9IQ
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« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2013, 12:19:50 AM »

Hi Bill,

Sorry to hear about the installation error. If you do need to make a new meter scale for your rotor control, check out the very nice, free program from Jim, W4ENE that makes very professional looking replacement scales:

http://www.tonnesoftware.com/meter2.html

At least it will get you by until you have the need to drop the mast in the future.

- Glenn W9IQ
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K8GU
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« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2013, 05:58:15 AM »

Can you flip the scale to S (as suggested by others, it's usually on the back of the N scale on the MFJ/Hy-Gain/CDE controllers) and then use the calibrate adjustment to hit it?  Or climb the mast with a monkey wrench and armstrong it around!
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K1CJS
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« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2013, 09:12:05 AM »

If taking down the antenna is not currently feasible, why not draw out a new scale for the meter that reflects the current antenna position on the rotator.  Tape it to the meter face and you are done.

This is the best, easiest solution--until you can get back up there and do the alignment according to instruction.
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K4RVN
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« Reply #9 on: July 02, 2013, 04:56:11 PM »

It may not be possible without taking the antenna down. To be certain I would email Hy-Gain to make certain. I have done the same thing in past years so don't feel alone.
Reading the manual did not give much hope.
Frank
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N6AJR
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« Reply #10 on: July 05, 2013, 11:06:49 AM »

On the yaesu rotor you just pop off the needle and put it back on where it points...
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K8AC
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« Reply #11 on: July 08, 2013, 01:49:57 PM »

There's another simple solution, depending upon which logging program you use.  DXView (part of DXLab Suite) handles the rotator control interface and you can specify an offset for an antenna (actually, two antennas) from the correct direction.  DXView will then position the antenna correctly using the offset you specify.  The DXView "Heading" box always shows you where the antenna is currently positioned, so you can refer to that instead of the rotor control box indicator to see the current position. 

73, Floyd - K8AC
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