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  1. #1
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    DISH satellite for 295RL

    I've used Dish at home for 20 years, so wanted it in our rig as well. I ordered the Wally receiver with DVR, the playmaker dish and the roof mount kit (yes, I know about trees). I set this up in my backyard and went through the new device setup with Dish. Their regular "techs" don't know anything, you have to get forwarded to a specialist. They charge you a $40 setup fee for the "DVR" which is just a USB drive. It worked fine in the back yard.

    FAILURE: I set the dish on the roof, checked that it had a view of the satellites with the TV Signal Finder Android app, and ran the supplied coax over the roof, into the passthru compartment, and attached it to the coax post labeled satellite on the control panel. Inside, I turned everything on, went through the "find the satellites" scan, and got TV. It looked good to me so I left it in the trailer. Later in the day I heard lots of noises from the dish, so I went back inside and checked. The receiver had lost all contact with satellites, wanted to start over with a scan. I went through this cycle twice. I had read in forums where long coax runs and low quality components (satellite systems want more than cable) can cause problems. Well I had the problems. I also couldn't find any built-in way to run the coax through the roof into the passthru control box.

    I found a local satellite guy who clearly did lots of RV's. He explained lot of the issues. He said that the playmaker is a great unit, but requires more power than some units and thus had problems with long or poor quality cable runs. Because the TV is in a popout, the cable run to it is longer. He set that when the Wally switched satellites, low power prevented the dish from moving fast enough and the receiver got confused. He said that I might need a more expensive dish unit and that I might need a "Wingard Power Inserter," designed to put plenty of power into the coax.

    I hired him. About the first thing he did was to open up the RV bottom just aft of the popout. He reached in and pulled a wad of wires out, including four coaxes with couplers connecting the popout wires to the interior wires. All the connectors were loose. He found the satellite coax and replaced the coupler with a blue satellite grade connector. He then looked for a channel from the passthru to the roof, saying that many GD units had them. No such luck. He then looked at the coax in the bedroom ceiling (we'd never use it). After some testing, he easily popped a coax through the room and connected it to the coax that runs to the control unit. Instead of jumping the bedroom post to the satellite post, he opened up the panel and connected the two coax's inside, reducing the number of components. We tried first with my playmaker and no power inserter.

    SUCCESS: The initial scan went fine, then he used the remote to check signal strength on each satellite, then moved through channels coming from different satellites. I think we're good. First trip with this gear on April 16.
    2020 Ford F150 XLT with HDPP, 3.5L TT V6, 6.5' bed, 3.73 axle, Curt A16 manual slider hitch.
    2021 GD Reflections 150 series 295RL 33' 5th
    Long ago: Carriage Lite 35' 5th, towed by Dodge Ram 2500 V10

  2. #2
    Seasoned Camper Grandesigner's Avatar
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    Interesting...I have a similar issue on another thread. The blue connector rings a bell...
    Dan and Rita
    2021 Reflection150 260RD, built June 2020, w/400W solar + 2 size 31 AGMs added
    Y2K F250 SuperCab 7.3 PSD 4x4, 4 Speed Auto, Shortbed w/slider (never used it)

  3. #3
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    So we did our first short checkout trip - three RV parks, AZ & CA. It was nice to find that the wally initiates the "find satellites" process when you plug in your rig. By the time setup is done, tv is available. It also seemed to remember guide data between parks so the longish process of obtaining guide data doesn't happen all the time.

    One of the three parks had lots of old trees. The shade was good, but our roof mounted dish had no chance of finding satellites. I'm sure that this will happen again, but I don't thinks it's common. The disappointing thing is that wally wouldn't let us watch programs that were pre-recorded on the DVR. Apparently Dish receivers cannot do much of anything without a satellite connection. Bummer.
    2020 Ford F150 XLT with HDPP, 3.5L TT V6, 6.5' bed, 3.73 axle, Curt A16 manual slider hitch.
    2021 GD Reflections 150 series 295RL 33' 5th
    Long ago: Carriage Lite 35' 5th, towed by Dodge Ram 2500 V10

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