My wife believes it's a "guy thing". "Men don't ASK for directions when lost, nor do they READ directions after purchasing a new product." While I can't speak for all of man-kind, I know in my case this is true - guilty as charged.
Typically, when I purchase a new product and get it home, I just open the box, plug it in and get it going ASAP. Seldom, if ever, do I consult the directions unless I get stuck on setup. As a manufacturer I know this is foolish. Often, when I do finally get around to reading the directions I find I have missed a crucial step or learned that the item has some neat features I never knew it had. Still, that "guy thing" kicks in and I do it again and again.
In acting as troubleshooter for our customers, I know that I am not alone in this habit. Often, the questions asked were covered in the directions provided with our product. So this newsletter is aimed at those readers who, like me, often skip reading the directions. If you are not in that group, you can skip down to the last paragraph.
In developing our tripod system we tried to eliminate the common problems everyone has in setting up and aiming a satellite dish on a tripod. We call our system the H&G eZee-Aim Tripod System.
The first step is to provide a "plumb" mast on which to mount the dish. It is necessary that the mast be plumb because both the Elevation and Skew / Tilt settings used in setup are relative to the plane of the Earth. The mast must be at a 90 degree angle to the Earth's plane for those settings to be accurate. For that reason, both our Standard-Duty Tripod and our Heavy-Duty model have adjustable legs and bubble levels to easily adjust for a plumb mast.
Next comes the problem of pointing the dish in the correct direction (azimuth) accurately. The problem in pointing the dish with a compass is the fact that the dish is made of steel. Whenever the compass is even near anything made of steel the needle direction is altered and is no longer accurate. This error can be as much as 20 degrees. To solve this problem we came up with the concept of aiming the tripod instead of aiming the dish. Since both of our tripods are constructed of aluminum they do not effect the compass needle. By aiming the tripod well away from any steel materials, a very accurate azimuth heading can be achieved. Then, mounting the dish to the reference point aims it within 2-3 degrees of the correct azimuth.
The final challenge is to be able to make minute adjustments to the elevation setting to easily fine-tune the signal. Once the hex nuts are loosened, the dish is free to move up and down easily and it is difficult to adjust the elevation setting. We developed our Dish Conversion Kit to replace the hex nuts with wing nuts and provide an elevation adjustment device that allows the user to easily make minute elevation adjustments.
If you have lost or misplaced your copy of the instructions that came with your tripod or want to review the current version, you can download them from our website here:
STANDARD-DUTY TRIPOD INSTRUCTIONS
HEAVY-DUTY TRIPOD INSTRUCTIONS
This has been another VERY busy month for our Heavy-Duty Tripods. Our supplier has been unable to provide us with the quantities needed to fill our orders. As a result we ran out of tripods again but expect a shipment around November 8th.. We regret any inconvenience this may cause our customers. Keep checking our website for status updates. To help make up for these delays we are offering a 10% off coupon on our Heavy-Duty Tripod and Heavy-Duty Combo Package purchases in November. See coupon details below.