Monday, 31 May 2004


Setup in this location was started late in the afternoon and I'd forgotten how quick it gets dark by the time you get this far North. Fortunately I was ably assisted by the local home-owner who in a previous life was well acquainted with nuts and bolts. The whole frame was together in a matter of 30 minutes.

We waited until the next day to put the dish in place and the electronics now have a better spot with the feeder cables on the inside, going back up the centre beam like they used to. Alignment was simple and our cross-poll check with the BOC was great.

I'm not happy with the water proofing of the current setup, and the tarpaulin is stopping an airflow across the heat-sinks, but with overnight temperatures at 0°C, I suspect that cooking the electronics is not likely to be an issue. I do worry about the direct sun, but the temps only come up to 18° in the day, so direct sunlight is not nearly as severe as experienced in Crossing Falls and the rest of the top-end.

I need to replace one of the feeder cables which looks like it got pinched in transit and I'm trying to determine if it would be worth the effort to install the wireless gear inside the electronics boxes, or if outside will continue to provide the best solution.

I'm still looking for a nicer way to attach the boxes to the frame and suspect that some measuring and drilling may come to pass in the next few months.

Sunday, 2 May 2004

Bishop's Creek

Installing the frame was achieved in under an hour and placing the dish on the mount was done in no time flat with the help of some locals. Our electronics solution still hadn't found its way to a point where I could say that I was happy, so I spent some time playing with some ideas I'd had on the road.

Instead of attaching them to the post or the dish, I placed them on the cross beam and with a ratchet tie, tied them to the beam. The location was a little clumsy because the feeder cables were going around the outside and were quite tight, but an improvement was found in Millmerran.

We were getting no signal and it was getting dark, when I noticed that I wasn't going past a tree like I thought, but straight through it. Moving the frame back a metre solved the problem and we were live 15 minutes later.

Packing up was simple with the new location for the beams against the firewall in the van and the electronics box behind the rear wheel. I'm not sure about it's location for any accidents or dings, but I suspect we'll have other problems then if that was ever the case. I'm still looking for a better spot.