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Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

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mtburb
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Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by mtburb » Thu Jun 27, 2019 6:12 pm

I am assisting Susan David-Thorne from the Wyandotte residents group on Facebook. She has a flat antenna for TV reception. She can usually get WJBK Fox 2, but once in a while, especially when it gets windy, she has problems with it. But for the last couple weeks, she has had major problems getting it over the air. When she places her hands on the antenna the channel will come in, but it messes up once she removes her hands. She does get CBET, but she also said she cannot get WHNE-LD. She lives in southwest Wyandotte (around the water tower area at 11th Street and Adelaide). Her antenna is in a window facing northeast towards the water tower. Should she get a new indoor antenna, or is the antenna truly to blame for the problem?


My furthest DTV tropo: KDKA Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at 202 miles for three days in January 2017 and a night in September 2017 with only an Antennas Direct C2V!

Current setup: Antennas Direct C2Max (2018-present)

k8jd
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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by k8jd » Thu Jun 27, 2019 9:08 pm

Maybe an indoor antenna will just not be good enough for a far soughern suburb. There are relatively small amplified antennas that cnan be installed on the roof that will work very well.



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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by innate-in-you » Thu Jun 27, 2019 9:56 pm

It matters what kind of indoor antenna is being used.

Almost any antenna that is in the form of a flat sheet will be a UHF-only antenna.

She's able to get CBET because she is very close to it. She would be able to walk to the CBET transmitter if the Detroit River were not in the way.

Her antenna lacks capture for the longer VHF signal of WJBK. When she touches the antenna, she becomes both an end loading section to match the impedance of the antenna to VHF and a VHF antenna herself.

She might be happy with an indoor antenna with both a loop (for UHF) and rabbit ears (for VHF), but avoid cheap ones that are flimsy or have a very thin coax going to the TV (which will lose a lot of the signal before it can get to the set.

Fox 2 is only 20 miles north of Sibley, and has 27kW ERP, so it should be easy.



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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by CK-722 » Fri Jun 28, 2019 3:09 am

I think that some of the discrete element and corner reflector type antennas would be superior, if you could mount them 20-30 feet above ground or secondarily in the attic. The less interior decorator friendly an antenna is, the better. The less your wife likes the looks of an antenna, still better.

https://www.google.com/search?q=rca+att ... 80&bih=735


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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by Splouge » Fri Jun 28, 2019 2:53 pm

Getting a Clearstream 2Max and connecting the coax to the back of the UHF figure-8 can get WJBK, CBET, WTOL (WTOL is unwatchable), and WTVG in Melvindale, the latter two only come in with an RCA 12dB amplifier. This is indoors. It performs well on Hi-V without the VHF dipoles.

It also performs well on UHF, getting all Detroit stations but WLPC-40 in Melvindale, also gets CHWI-16 and WGTE, the latter only comes in with the amp


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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by Ben Zonia » Fri Jun 28, 2019 6:05 pm

Splouge wrote:
Fri Jun 28, 2019 2:53 pm
Getting a Clearstream 2Max and connecting the coax to the back of the UHF figure-8 can get WJBK, CBET, WTOL (WTOL is unwatchable), and WTVG in Melvindale, the latter two only come in with an RCA 12dB amplifier. This is indoors. It performs well on Hi-V without the VHF dipoles.

It also performs well on UHF, getting all Detroit stations but WLPC-40 in Melvindale, also gets CHWI-16 and WGTE, the latter only comes in with the amp
I bet you could get just about all the Toledo stations reliably with the modest outdoor antennas linked above at the RL described. You’re barely making up for the aperture loss without a VHF-High Dipole with the preamp, and it adds noise. Outdoor modest directional gain and height gain give you a lot of noise free gain. Like boosting ERP by 20 times. I’d like to see an A/B Comparison of performance on each channel as well as total number of channels.

My relatives near Racine have disappointing results with a similar indoor antenna, from both Milwaukee and Chicago stations. They cut in and out all the time, and require constant adjustment.


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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by MWmetalhead » Sun Jun 30, 2019 8:04 am

A lot of the flat, square antennas have elements inside perfectly suitable for VHF 7 to 13.

This one works great for me (do not use the preamp that comes with it):

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00RF ... UTF8&psc=1


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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by CK-722 » Sun Jun 30, 2019 9:40 am

The point Ben Zonia is making is that preamplifiers add noise to the signal. Even digital signals cannot be received if buried in noise of a certain level. You need more signal, not gain that adds noise.

Dr. Salvati wrote a book about CATV and MATV systems, and extensively covered TV Antennas. He covered the topic of antenna aperture. A small antenna has a small antenna aperture, whether UHF or VHF. The reason the best antennas are large parabolic dishes is that they have a large aperture. One of the reasons that UHF needs higher ERP is that regardless of how many elements a typical UHF antenna has, the elements are small and they have a small dipole aperture. The dBd may be high, but still not perform that well. A high gain UHF antenna still has a small aperture. The GE Antenna shown below has a single broadband folded High VHF Dipole, and a CYLINDRICAL reflector that focuses the signal on the driven folded dipole. Just looking at it, I would suspect that the GE has the best performance of any of the newfangled small attic/outdoor designs. I'd like to see technical specifications for all of them-polar patterns, gain on each channel, etc.

Image


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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by CK-722 » Sun Jun 30, 2019 11:42 am

MWmetalhead wrote:
Sun Jun 30, 2019 8:04 am
A lot of the flat, square antennas have elements inside perfectly suitable for VHF 7 to 13.

This one works great for me (do not use the preamp that comes with it):

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00RF ... UTF8&psc=1
I'd have to look inside and do some physical measurements to see if that is potentially a good performer. What are the outer dimensions? If it's not at least 34 X 34 inches, I'm not impressed. Then it should be able to be free in the air and not up against the wall or the TV.

You are very close to Channel 7. Do you get 9 without fiddling a lot? 11 and 13? The more of those you can get regularly, the more impressed I would be. We don't have WFUM/WCMZ 28 to kick around anymore. 9, 11, 13, and 28 are/were intermittent for me, even with an attic antenna.


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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by MWmetalhead » Sun Jun 30, 2019 1:20 pm

It's the only indoor antenna I've EVER used that's been able to pick up both CBET-DT and CICO-DT indoors, although it took very careful positioning near a south facing window to make that happen!

The signal strength of WJBK using the antenna I referenced is stronger (based on my TV's dB meter) than what is received via my RCA dipoles.

The WJBK tower is about 5 miles from my current house.

The antenna is 12.9 inches by 9.3 inches.


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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by mtburb » Sun Jun 30, 2019 1:27 pm

If this help matters at all, Susan's house only has one floor, though the immediate neighborhood has some two-floor houses. As of today, she is still not getting WJBK.


My furthest DTV tropo: KDKA Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at 202 miles for three days in January 2017 and a night in September 2017 with only an Antennas Direct C2V!

Current setup: Antennas Direct C2Max (2018-present)

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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by CK-722 » Sun Jun 30, 2019 1:38 pm

12.9 inches is not even a quarter wave at Channel 7. It has to have a negative dBd gain value, which doesn't apply to amplified signals. I suppose if it's like a huqe UHF loop, it might work fairly well. As I recall, a loop UHF antenna is less than dipole gain once you consider that it is broadband. That's negative dBd gain. So if you had a -3 dBd gain, with a 12 dB amplifier, you might be at close to 9 dBd "gain", if you had next to no connector and line loss, along with the noise.


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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by RingtailedFox » Sun Jun 30, 2019 10:16 pm

Is the water tower to her north? because that might be causing interference, especially if it's a massive metal structure like the one we have here in Windsor...


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mtburb
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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by mtburb » Sun Jun 30, 2019 11:04 pm

RingtailedFox wrote:
Sun Jun 30, 2019 10:16 pm
Is the water tower to her north? because that might be causing interference, especially if it's a massive metal structure like the one we have here in Windsor...
It's to her northeast.


My furthest DTV tropo: KDKA Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at 202 miles for three days in January 2017 and a night in September 2017 with only an Antennas Direct C2V!

Current setup: Antennas Direct C2Max (2018-present)

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Re: Helping someone get WJBK OTA in SW Wyandotte

Post by RingtailedFox » Sun Jun 30, 2019 11:24 pm

hmm... could cause some minor multipath, but that wouldn't be enough to outright block the signal.... now, you said she can get CBET... they're on VHF 9. WJBK (Fox 2) is actually on VHF 7... so there's not a whole lot of difference between the two channels in terms of frequency... let me just see if there are any FM transmitters nearby that might be causing second-harmonic interference (88 x 2 = 176 MHz, which is the middle part of VHF 7, itself stretching from 174 to 180 MHz)....

hmmm.....

After a quick look, i saw there are the following potential second-harmonic interference culprits (bold being most likely):
WSMF 88.1 Monroe (1.2 kW)
WHFR 89.3 Dearborn (270 w)
WDTP 89.5 Huron Charter Township (700 w)
CBE-FM 89.9 McGregor (100 kW)

The WJBK transmiter is 18.4 miles from her location, while the CBE-FM/CBET-DT transmitter in McGregor is only 11.4 miles, and it's omnidirectional to my knowledge.

I also briefly thought about the massive Ford River Rouge Complex causing interference, but that's conveniently JUST east of line-of-sight to the transmitter (it's due-north and the WJBK Fox 2 transmiter is NNW of her neighbourhood), so that can't be it....

I'm thinking the culprit is likely her square antenna. Sadly, the digital television transition has made rooftop (or tower) antennas an almost requirement if you're more than 15 miles from the transmitter, due to situations like this. I also wonder what type of wire she's using to connect her antenna to her television, and if there's a wifi router within say, six feet of the antenna (electronics made since 1995 seems to give off all sorts of spurious emissions and the FCC and CRTC seem to have taken a hands-off approach to enforcement of emissions limits).

WHNE-LD is a low-powered digital station broadcasting from WMYD (My TV 20)'s tower in Oak Park on UHF 20. they're sandwiched between WUDL-LD (at the Renaissance Center) on UHF 19 and WMYD's former location (and WWJ-TV's future home) at UHF 21. WHNE-LD is moving to VHF 3 in the very near future, so... if she's having trouble picking up WJBK Fox 2 (with its rather beefy 27.2 kW transmitter), she's not going to have a snowball's chance in hell of picking up WHNE, even if it runs at a respectable 3 kW.


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