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Vol. 4 - No. 4

Mariah and Satellite TV

Quite a few years ago my Brother-in-Law invited me to go sailing with him.  His small sailboat had barely enough room for the four of us but off we went on a small lake in Connecticut.  There was a light wind blowing and we quickly sailed out to the middle of the lake and just as quickly the wind died down and we just stopped moving completely.  We sat there in the hot, humid Connecticut summer sun and waited for what seemed like an eternity but was about an hour for the wind to change.  Then a small breeze started up and we were off again.

I was amazed at how much force that slight breeze could exert to move that small boat and four adults across the lake.  With that in mind, I am not surprised that each month we get orders for replacement parts for our tripods, generally due to damage from being blown over by the wind. 

We discussed this topic in our February, 2010 Newsletter but it is well worth repeating.  Any TV satellite dish tripod MUST be properly anchored or it will face the wrath of Mother Nature.

Our Heavy-Duty Tripod has been specifically designed to support even the large DirecTV Slimline dish and withstand high wind gusts when properly anchored.  Let's discuss some of the features and options that make our tripod unique from other tripod models and easy to anchor.

The first feature is the adjustable legs.  Each leg can be extended to almost double its length.  Since there are no restraints on the legs, this allows the user to create a very large footprint base which greatly increases the stability and gives greater wind resistance.  When creating a large footprint on smooth surfaces, like patios, it is advisable to use chain around the leg feet to keep them from slipping outward.

Unfortunately, just creating a large footprint is not enough to win the battle with Mother Nature.  You must also securely anchor the tripod to the ground.  This is easy to do by using another tripod feature - the sturdy eyebolt located just below the mounting mast.   Attaching the anchor to this point applies a downward force to the center of the tripod where it will be most effective.

If you are setting up on a patio or other surface that will not allow for a ground penetrating device, we recommend using at least one (two is even better) 5 gallon pail(s) filled with sand or water as ballast.  Attach the bungee cord between the eye hook of the tripod and the handle(s) of the pail(s).  Stretch the cord tight enough to get a firm pull down but not enough to lift the pail(s) off the ground.

If you are setting up on a grass, dirt or gravel area but the ground is too hard to screw in the ground screw stake, here is another option.  If you have not purchased our High-Wind Option Package you may visit your local hardware store and purchase two 12" galvanized spikes. Then, place the ground screw stake under the tripod, laying it flat on the ground with the round ring centered under the tripod's eyebolt.  Drive each spike through the ring of the stake and into the ground at opposing 45 degree angles as shown in the photo below.  You may now attach the bungee cord to the ring and the eyebolt for a solid ground anchor.

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Taking a few extra minutes during setup to properly secure your tripod will pay dividends in trouble-free use of your equipment and save some money on replacement parts.  If you need a part to restore your equipment to full operational service visit the Replacement Parts section of our website by clicking here.   We carry a full line of replacement parts for your tripod.  Use the coupon code below to save 10% on your parts.