- Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) Community

Call Search

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Friends Remembered
Survey Question

DX Cluster Spots

Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement

Reviews Categories | Antenna Rotators & Accessories | Green Heron Engineering RT-20 Help

Reviews Summary for Green Heron Engineering RT-20
Green Heron Engineering RT-20 Reviews: 35 Average rating: 5.0/5 MSRP: $569
Description: Rotator controller
Product is in production.
More info:
Email Subscription
You are not subscribed to this review.

My Subscriptions
Subscriptions Help

You can write your own review of the Green Heron Engineering RT-20.

<— Page 2 of 4 —>

K1ZW Rating: 5/5 Mar 15, 2011 06:04 Send this review to a friend
Outstanding Service and Performance  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've been remiss in doing a review of this fine controller. I purchased it 3/15/2006. Jeff had it all set for my Yaesu 2800. I bought it mainly for the ramp up and down feature. I have an aluminum tower with a 4el SteppIR (6-40). With the 7# weight on the end of the boom to counter balance the 40mtr element, there was quite a bit of twisting at starting and stopping. Well there isn't anymore. Its so smooth people can't believe it.

Thanks Jeff keep up the great work.

73 Larry Durham, NC
PA1T Rating: 5/5 Mar 11, 2011 03:35 Send this review to a friend
Very good  Time owned: more than 12 months

I am using the RT21D (black deluxe version) for over two years now.
I have 4 of them and they are used to turn the 4 Prosistel rotators.
The box is flexible, has a nice big display, and a good working preset turning knob.
You can easily reprogram it for other rotators. The menuís are easy to operate.
The contest program N1MM supports this box. This makes it possible to point and shoot to the dx station you want to work with a simple key stroke. (Alt J).
Also the benefit that you can operate the box over the network with the free software that is delivered with the box makes the system very flexible.
The WSJT software from K1JT can be connected with the Green Heron tracking program which is free.
This make tracking the moon and satellites easy.
The box is made to operate with all the modern rotators that are on the market today.
The support from Jeff W2FU is outstanding.
K5MM Rating: 5/5 Mar 9, 2011 12:23 Send this review to a friend
Excellent Product and Service  Time owned: more than 12 months

Remarks: I've owned and operated a RT-21 for 2 years with an Orion 2800DC rotator. Operation has been flawless. The setup utility is excellent as is rotator control via the DXLabs suite. Last Fall my tower suffered a direct lightning strike. My RT-21 together with other equipment in the shack was damaged. I sent the RT-21 to GH for repair. A friend and I tested the repaired unit in my shop for 30 minutes or so and confirmed operation with my repaired Orion 2800DC rotator, which also had been heavily damaged and required reed and limit switch replacements as well as bypass caps. However, control of the repaired rotator, after installation in tower, with the repaired RT-21 was erratic until there was no control at all. I confirmed the integrity of my control line then wrote Jeff Green. He was kind enough to take time to help me test and identify issues by phone and email. Eventually he told me to send the RT-21 back again. This second time around Jeff again replaced boards, updated firmware and tested the unit on an Orion rotator to confirm operation. He spent more phone and email time with me after the second repair did not resolve my control issue. Finally Jeff said the problem must be the rotator. I purchased and installed a new Orion rotator, after a second rotator rebuild failed. The RT-21 now operates as advertised. I sent my old rotator to M Squared for rebuild and will keep it as a backup. The interior of my old rotator was heavy carbonized from the lightning. I likely missed a carbon trail that created stray voltages in the rotator or perhaps suffered motor damage. I donít know.

I'm guessing Jeff spent the better part of 4 hours on the phone with me, including time after normal business hours and on a weekend, trying to get me going. I was charged $66.64, including shipping, for the first repair. Jeff refused my request for an invoice for the second repair even after I confirmed my problem resolved with a new rotator and the second repair was un-necessary.

The bottom line is this is a great product that comes with excellent service if you need it.

KI5WE Rating: 5/5 Mar 4, 2011 10:39 Send this review to a friend
THE VERY BEST....  Time owned: more than 12 months
I received my first RT-20 from Jeff almost 2 years ago and I could not be works flawlessly it has not given me any problems.I liked it so much that 6 months ago I ordered a second one for my log antenna. I have had a lot of other controllers in the past but none of them as good as the green heron RT-20. I scored a 10 plus out of a 10. It is the last controller you will ever need, and for the price you can't beat it... KI5WE
NE2I Rating: 5/5 Nov 7, 2010 09:24 Send this review to a friend
Ham IV configuration  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I purchased this controller based on the great service I have received using the GH anywhere control boxes and software. My original control box with the idiom press board finally died and the rs232 was inop for a few years. I wanted seamless control for contest and remote operation and the
RT 21 was exactly the unit I was looking for. I
called and had them configure it for the Ham IV.
It came within a week and has been a great addition.
The USB port works 100% and is easy to setup and configure. Highly Recommended!
WD0M Rating: 5/5 Oct 23, 2010 14:07 Send this review to a friend
High Quality/Solid Performance  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
The rotator controller for my Yaesu G1000SDX failed recently, and initially I considered acquiring a new rotor and controller to replace it. Then I recalled having read about the great performance turned in (pun intended) by the Green Heron controller. Instead of the complexities of having to lower my tower to replace the rotor, all I had to do was swap out the control box with the Green Heron RT-21.

I liked the appearance of the RT-21D version (black with vacuum fluorescent display), as all the equipment in my shack is black. Otherwise, the units are identical.

After contacting Jeff at Green Heron (he answered my email on the weekend!) to verify the RT-21D would work with my Yaesu G1000SDX, I placed the order.

Jeff pre-configured the RT-21D for my rotator, so when it arrived, there was little to do except connect the cable, establish the rotational limits (it accommodates the 450 degree rotation of the Yaesu), and it worked!

Solidly built, and tremendously versatile, the pointing accuracy is down to the tenth of a degree, the VFD display is brilliant (adjustable), and it has a ramp up feature to reduce the stress of overcoming the antenna's inertia and make it easier on the rotor so it lasts longer.

I'm impressed with the quality of the RT-21D, and the versatile performance - and especially the customer service offered by Jeff!
K5MM Rating: 5/5 Sep 7, 2009 18:25 Send this review to a friend
Excellent Product and Support  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I bought the Green Heron RT-21 to use with a new OR-2800P-DC. The RT-21 replaced an Orion 2800PX which, I discovered after installation, required shielded control cables for my installation. The RT 21 works flawlessly with my unsheilded control cable. The RT-21 installation software is excellent and the unit is easily controlled with DXLabs and other popular software. Green Heron support is also excellent--my emails have been answered the same day I sent them. I'm very pleased.
N2EHG Rating: 5/5 Aug 9, 2009 14:59 Send this review to a friend
BlackRT21  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Just got the controller in black, looks great has a very solid feel. The pre sale support was fantastic, and that is most important to me. So far my rotor is on the floor testing is flawless.

I'll update the review once I get the antenna in the air but i am confident in the controller. I'd definately recomend it.
NC1I Rating: 5/5 Jan 20, 2009 16:51 Send this review to a friend
Great Product  Time owned: months
I purchased my first RT-20 from green Heron Engineering (GHE) back in 2006. This controller was purchased to replace the stock M2 controller on my Orion OR2800DC. The Orion rotor was setup on a sidemount for VHF/UHF antennas. I found that the M2 controller was not very user friendly. It also did not provide the features and flexibility of the RT-20

The RT-20 was fairly easy to set-up and program. It is very intuitive and easy to use, has a very large display, and has just about every feature you could ever need or even think of. The controller was well packed and the quality and workmanship was immediately obvious. The manual was complete, well though out, and easy to read.

After using the RT-20 for a few months I decided to take the plunge and order three more for my HF stack (3-Bencher Skyhawk's). The top rotor is a Prosistol PST-71D and the lower two are TIC Rings. Again it was pretty straight forward to swap out the stock Prosistol and TIC controllers and set-up the new GHE boxes.

On occasion I have had some slippage in the Prosistol mast clamp (turns the top Bencher and an OptiBeam 4-element 40 meter yagi). The RT-20 allows for recalibration without climbing the tower (as long as you have enough slack in your flex lines/rotor loop). This has saved me several trips up the big tower.

One nice feature for a stack is the ability to program any one of the controllers to be used as a "Master". All antennas can then be directed to the same azimuth beam heading with either a simple turn of the knob on the Master unit, or via computer. I have N1MM setup with rotor control via serial port and with a single keystroke we can send one or more antennas spinning to the desired beam heading.

In the fall of 2007 my station took a lightning hit and three of my four RT-20 controllers were damaged along with a lot of other equipment in the shack and on the tower. The three controllers were sent out to GHE where they were quickly repaired. While back for repairs I had Jeff update the control boxes to the newer RT-21 model (less the USB port which is not practical to add to early RT-20's). The cost for repairs and updates was very reasonable.

I have since purchased three more RT-21's. These three units are all used to control a very large (48 yagi) 70cm EME array. Two of the RT-21's control large prop-pitch motors used for azimuth and polarity rotation. The third controller is used to control a 120 VAC linear actuator for elevation.

The Rt-21's used for prop-pitch control include the optional RPU, a more robust power supply that can be mounted remotely (at the tower) or in the shack. The RPU is housed in a very nice weatherproof enclosure. For position feedback, one of the prop-pitch units utilizes a pulse counter on the drive motor shaft (many thousands of RPM's) and the other uses a precision multi-turn pot mecahniaclly coupled to the mast. The GHE controllers allow you to easily choose either pulse or pot configuration.

The controllers also provide for user programable ramp-up and ramp-down transitions speeds which are necessary for large arrays (about 100 sf in my EME system).

The azimuth and elevation controllers are configured to use Green Heron's "GH Tracker" software. This program combined with F1FEN's "EME System" package has provided a reliable and almost plug and play auto-tracking system for a very large EME array. We are able to automatically track the moon (or most any other celestial object) down to a couple of tenths of a degree. In reality the accuracy is only limited by the linearity of the precision pot used for feedback and the mechanics of your system.

Over the three years I have been using the GHE controllers there have been questions and issues that have required communication with GHE. I can honestly say that I have never before experienced better communication or support from any ham radio manufacturer or vendor.

The controllers are not inexpensive but I do think they are an excellent value. They have added incredible flexibility to my station and I now have many usefull features that would have not otherwise been available to me. The fact that the RT-20/21 is a universal controller allows me to keep a single spare controller in the shack that can be used to replace any of the seven controllers currently in use.

I highly recommend the GHE controllers for anyone that is not satisfied with the performance or features of their current rotor controllers.
W5JON Rating: 5/5 Dec 18, 2008 18:07 Send this review to a friend
Priceless  Time owned: more than 12 months
After more then a year using the Green Heron RT21, the only problems have been either operator "cockpit" or external to the Green Heron. The Green Heron operation has been flawless.
Jeff's knowledge of his product, the Green Heron, and the rotors that connect to it is priceless.
Today within moments, Jeff was able to give me all the voltage and resistance values to determine there was water in one of the outside cable connectors going to my Prosistel.
Jeff's technical support, and patience are second to none.
John W5JON
<— Page 2 of 4 —>

If you have any questions, problems, or suggestions about Reviews, please email your Reviews Manager.