Vol. 5 - No. 1



This month we received a call from a potential customer in Canada.  He was preparing to purchase our equipment but was concerned about reports that the Canadian provider SHAW DIRECT was about to limit the coverage area to Canada.  Then, they would be unable to get their Canadian programming when traveling in the U.S. 

Since customers in Canada make up a steadily increasing percentage of our customer base, this report got our attention.  We did some research online and were unable to get a complete report.   We then called SHAW DIRECT and spoke with a customer service representative who assured us that SHAW coverage to the U.S. would not change*, since Canadian RVers make up about 33% of their customer base.

*We think the confusion results from this report on regarding the launch of a new satellite - Anik G1.

"Anik G1 is a new satellite scheduled to begin service late in early 2013.  Its primary mission for Shaw Direct is to allow about 75 new HD channels to become available on a national (Canada) basis, as well as provide additional space for more Canadian local television channels and other services.  This satellite will have a much reduced coverage area, so those in the southern U.S., Mexico and beyond will not be able to receive any services because of their location.  Looking at the outer edge of coverage at the +48 dBw contour, one should assume that the new Triple Quad LNBF and stock 75-E Shaw Direct antennas should work reliably up to that point.  Data is preliminary right now with regard to how far south into the U.S. Lower 48 this might work with a larger antenna.   When we know some concrete information supported by live signal measurement after the launch of this new satellite, we will put it here, along with any recommendations, and have appropriate antennas for sale."

We interpret this to mean that SHAW DIRECT customers will still receive all the programming they have been getting but might not be able to receive some of this new programming that is transmitted on this satellite.

This topic is being discussed in many threads on the RV.NET forums.  This response by "Mike from Canmore" was very informative and seems to sum it up well -

"Shaw is not changing satellites or are new ones replacing existing satellites.

Unlike Bell, Shaw is adding 16 additional transponders on a new satellite.

From another forum, the facts
"There has been a lot of conjecture on this forum and others that Shaw will be changing satellites to those with Canada only beams in the near or medium terms - just like Bell.

Here are the facts:
Shaw has lifetime leases for Ku band transponders on Anik F1R and F2.

Anik F2 is a Boeing 702 series satellite. The 702 series are the biggest communications satellites ever built. It's sister satellite, Anik F1, was 1 of 5 702s built by Boeing with defective solar panel arrays. It has 2 sets of C/Ku transponders - one set for North America, the other set for South America. The defect resulted in the NA beams being turned off in 2005 and replaced by Anik F1R, built by EADS.

On October 26, 2012, the final Anik F1 insurance lawsuit was finalized by Telesat and Boeing. In the agreed upon facts, it was disclosed that Anik F1 will be able to operate until 2022 - a total of 21 years. Due to the solar panel defect, over time some of the transponders will have to be turned off and affected services transferred to the S.A. transponders of G1.

This means that F2 can be operational to 2025 - same 21 years after in service date. This is inline with Telesat's 2023 replacement date stated in 2011.

Anik F1R has an expected lifespan of 15 years ie until late 2020.

So at the very minimum there will be Shaw Anik F1R/F2 service to North America for at least 8 years. "

In short, in order to avoid blank HD screens due to simultaneous substitutions, you should install a non Ku Extended Band LNBF in areas outside the footprint of Anik G1 "

We hope this information helps clear up some of the confusion regarding this subject.  It would seem we can welcome our friends from the north with at least 8 or 10 more years of Canadian TV when they visit the U.S.


To make it easier to tune in those signals on your Shaw satellite dish we recommend adding our SHAW DISH CONVERSION KIT.  The kit replaces all your adjustment hex nuts with wingnuts so you won't need a wrench to adjust the settings.  In addition, the kit adds an ELEVATION ADJUSTMENT that lets you dial in the elevation setting one degree at a time.  A BIG plus.  Click on the link below to order the kit and use our COUPON CODE to save some money!

Shaw Dish Conversion Kit  with M-8 wingnuts for SHAW dish users.  Use the OPTIONS menu to select this model.