Welcome to the Very Small Array

After upgrading my Dish Network system to High Definition, I discovered that the system they provided was inadequate for receiving signals at a proper strength to operate their receiver. Dish Network provided a Dish 1000 and a VIP 211 receiver. I decided to try a larger dish for better gain. Knowing that there are many old medium size dishes left over from the early days of direct broadcast satellite systems, I decided that I would try to find one and experiment with using it for reception of the Echo 5 satellite located at 129 W. After driving many back roads I located an old Primestar 1.2 meter dish and brought it home and cleaned it up.

The first thing I did was to plant a 4" pole to support the new larger dish. Later (after I found my new used dish) I added a 3" spud to the top to fit the pole mount to.

Next I made a small hanger to hold the Dish Network LNB to the LNB mount of the Primestar Dish.

I used an old legacy LNB to measure and fit to. This varied only slightly from the Dish Pro unit I finally used. I removed the white plastic cap and plastic body, to measure the distance the feed horn is from the body.

The actual Dish Pro LNB mounted on the Primestar dish.

Another view of the DP LNB.

The Very Small Array is born. Using the Dish 1000 my maximum signal strength was 72 which fluctuated all the way down to 32 !!! Using the 1.2 meter Primestar dish (made by Channel Master now Andrew) My maximun signal strength is 102 and rarely, if ever, falls below 90. These measurements were taken on a typical cloudy, crappy, rainy day in western Washington.

Check out "The Very Large Array" for some really big dishes!