The perils of not using the protective sleeve

Channel Hopper

Channel Hopper

Suffering fools, so you don't have to.
Staff member
Messages
29,660
My Satellite Setup
A little less analogue, and a lot more crap.
My Location
UK
I had a callout this weekend, a Freesat system that had died, completely. No signal at all on the analyser suggesting only the twin cable or the LNB was at fault.

Onto the roof to be greeted with a Zone 1 dish where the previous 'installer' had failed to put the sleeve in the down position.

Cutting back the cables, and replacing the LNB restored the signal, but no amount of decent force on the F -plugs that have welded themselves onto the threads will remove them. I'll soak in some penetrating fluid later, but rainwater and electrolysis has done its thing.

20191222_204725.jpg20191222_204733.jpg
 
aceb

aceb

Specialist Contributor
Messages
1,503
My Satellite Setup
Prof Tuner 7301 /
1.25m Gibertini + Inverto B.Ultra/C1W, Moteck H180, 68.5E-67W Ku/C-Band /
1.8m Precision PF + ESX241/Inverto Black Pro, 66E-63W Ku/C-band /
2.4m Fortec Star+Titanium C1W/Pride plate, 49E-58W
My Location
Sussex
Living down here on the coast that's quite a common sight after a few years. I had one some time ago that was so bad I ended up taking pair of pipe grips to the F plug to see what gave first. The sleeve on the F plug broke up but left most of the thread fused to the socket.
 
Fisty McB

Fisty McB

Member
Messages
282
My Satellite Setup
Currently under redevelopment.
My Location
County Tyrone, N. Ireland
Some time back I posted about a derelict Sky Zone 2 dish that was high up on a side wall of the house I moved into that I got someone to take down for me, the quad output LNB (Zinwell) had all four ports in use (it seemed two for the living room and two for the main bedroom) but whoever installed it never pulled down the shield, andthe F connector plugs & sockets had "rust bonded" to each other making the device useless. As above, several sets of pliers & a soaking of WD40 couldn't budge any of them, so I had to throw it out.

Given that these don't seem to be one off isolated indicents, I wonder if installers failing to pull down the shield of LNB is just down to sheer ignorance, or that they're deliberately setting it up to allow for an eventual fail so that they're called out in future to "fix" it, with the average non-tech person not knowing any better about things like this?
 
2cvbloke

2cvbloke

Bulbs need shelter too...
Messages
9,751
My Satellite Setup
No satellite stuff for the moment (aside from a 43cm minidish that was on the house already), Samsung SyncMaster T27B550 Smart TV & Monitor, and a few computers...
My Location
Near Pontop Pike, Co. Durham
I guess the sky monkeys have to spend more time getting rigged up in their mountaineering gear than they do actually making sure the job's done right, saw such a sight up the street today, you'd think he was scaling mount Everest... :-rofl2
 
Last edited:
jeallen01

jeallen01

Specialist Contributor
Messages
4,423
My Satellite Setup
See Signature
My Location
Somewhere in England (possibly?)!
And some silicone (note the "e" on the end! - that's the "difference" :D ) on the threads might also have "helped" :rolleyes:
 
Terryl

Terryl

Specialist Contributor
Messages
2,552
My Satellite Setup
OpenBox X5 on a 1 meter motorized dish.
And now a 10 foot "C" band dish.

Custom built PC
My Location
Deep in the Boonies in the central Sierra Nevada mountains of California.
Dielectric grease for RF connectors is the best way, and proper weather proof compression connectors is a must for marine weather environments.
 
jeallen01

jeallen01

Specialist Contributor
Messages
4,423
My Satellite Setup
See Signature
My Location
Somewhere in England (possibly?)!
Dielectric grease for RF connectors is the best way, and proper weather proof compression connectors is a must for marine weather environments.
Links to "suitable" "dielectric grease" would be useful.
 
Fisty McB

Fisty McB

Member
Messages
282
My Satellite Setup
Currently under redevelopment.
My Location
County Tyrone, N. Ireland
I guess the sky monkeys have to spend more time getting rigged up in their mountaineering gear than they do actually making sure the job's done right, saw such a sight up the street today, you'd think he was scaling mount Everest... :-rofl2
To be fair, I'm pretty sure that such installers working on behalf of Sky have to take safety precautions are part of their working contract with them, not to mention a condition of their insurance. The use of body harnesses & hard hats might look a little silly, but I reckon looking silly is a small price to pay to not become another statistic alongside riggers, amateur radio operators, aerial installers etc. who've had "accidents" resulting in death, paralysis or some other injury, sometimes permenant, over the decades. While most enthuasist corners on the web and elsewhere will not usually tell you to go as far as always wearing an arrest harness, they will emphasise about taking firm precautions if you're more than a couple or so rungs on a ladder above the ground, which should either be properly secured and/or stabilised in the first place, as well as having the proper tools, checking before drilling etc. and importantly, realise that if you haven't got a head for heights then get someone whom knows what they're doing. I'm fortunate enough that my view of the satellite arc allows me to do my work at ground level in my back garden which allows me to easily access the dishes and outdoor distribution. The world does not need more Rod Hull's.

In any case, it only takes one or two seconds for an installer to pull down the shield, or maybe a couple of more seconds to fit in the rubber boot alternative (assuming they put it on the coax beforehand), there is really no excuse not to do it.

As for the diletric grease, it's often called silicone grease on this side of the Atlantic. Personally I've used the stuff that is generally used in the auto industry for several years without any issues and working well, though I seem to remember a while back here that in North America a specific type of diletric/silicone grease is recommended instead of those used for car wiring for some reason. All I can say is that the ordinary stuff I've bought on eBay from UK suppliers has not given me any issues. For my own "permenant" installations to the LNBs on dishes in the past I've used the standard screw-on f connector plugs on coax, drop a small bit of silicone grease inside the connector, screw on the connector to the LNB, wrap the connector with self-amalgamating tape, and then pull down any rain shield on the LNB and as long as it is done properly then it'll last a long time, with the F plugs looking like the day they were put on when you take them off. For my planned set up in 2020 however I do have some compression & crimp F plugs alongside the proper tools for them, as well as some rubber O-rings for plugs that don't have their own. But I must also say that in my experience looking at other's satellite installations locally (including some that are taken down after a good few years of service, sometimes 15 years or more), where conditions are usually damp and humidity often high, as long as you can prevent rainwater, sleet or snow from hitting the F plug which can seep moisture in through the gap between the body and the screw nut, or between the nut and the socket, then that is usually adequate for most domestic Sky & Freesat installations, highlighting the importance of pulling down those LNB rain shields! In other scenarios where you're working with finer signal margins or on commercial installations, then it makes more sense to ratchet up the waterproofing with self-amalgamating tape or good quality rubber boots/heatshrink, O-rings, silicone grease etc. to help keep not only moisture out but also limit water vapour to the nth degree.
 
Analoguesat

Analoguesat

Administrator
Staff member
Messages
47,857
Location
Scottish Borders
My Satellite Setup
TM 5402HD
Skybox F3
Sky+ UK.
My Location
Scottish Borders
The one problem Ive found with the plastic rain shields up here in Scotland is that after 3 or 4 years outside the damn things can jam solid. More than once Ive managed to pull it completely off an lnb trying to free it! Even generous applications of wd40 dont always help

FWIW I never bother with anything more than the lnb rain shields where the lnb has one - and In 20 years Ive never had any problems with water ingress or corrosion on my numerous lnbs where the shield is present.
 
Channel Hopper

Channel Hopper

Suffering fools, so you don't have to.
Staff member
Messages
29,660
My Satellite Setup
A little less analogue, and a lot more crap.
My Location
UK
Given that these don't seem to be one off isolated indicents, I wonder if installers failing to pull down the shield of LNB is just down to sheer ignorance, or that they're deliberately setting it up to allow for an eventual fail so that they're called out in future to "fix" it, with the average non-tech person not knowing any better about things like this?

I would give them the benefit of the doubt (thinking that far ahead takes some intelligence).

I guess the sky monkeys have to spend more time getting rigged up in their mountaineering gear than they do actually making sure the job's done right, saw such a sight up the street today, you'd think he was scaling mount Everest... :-rofl2
I am reminded of the possibility with that spam advert for AerialForce that crops up from time to time on the forum. The aforementioned primate dressed in full H+S regalia, playing ninja turtle with an assembled zone 2 over his shoulder. Sun looks to be directly overhead at an angle of about 40 degrees

Unless it is rather early in the morning where he is being paid peanuts he will learn that Sky setups up are best installed east of south to get a signal.
 
Terryl

Terryl

Specialist Contributor
Messages
2,552
My Satellite Setup
OpenBox X5 on a 1 meter motorized dish.
And now a 10 foot "C" band dish.

Custom built PC
My Location
Deep in the Boonies in the central Sierra Nevada mountains of California.
Some of the silicone greases will migrate into the dielectric insulation and degrade it, that's why I only use the stuff made for RF connectors.

And in extreme conditions I use heat-shrink on top of everything.
 
Channel Hopper

Channel Hopper

Suffering fools, so you don't have to.
Staff member
Messages
29,660
My Satellite Setup
A little less analogue, and a lot more crap.
My Location
UK
Well, after two weeks soaking in penetrating fluid, I had another go at releasing the connectors (a 7/16 ring spanner fits the hex nut perfectly).

I can still use it in single HD mode of course, or if careful two HD boxes where the earth runs to each television point with just one of the centre outlets.20200111_131652[1].jpg20200111_131659[1].jpg
 
woborny

woborny

Specialist Contributor
Messages
1,078
My Satellite Setup
1.8m Dish, most Sky and Freesat receivers, 80cm on Illusion motor and Dreambox DM7025, TDT, TDT HD, Ariva 100e,
My Location
Gandia, 70kms south of Valencia, Spain
A common occurrence, not pulling down the protective cover, here in the Costas in Spain...probably as the "cowboys" know they can return in a few years time to charge for a new LNB and more work....
 
Top