Free to Air satellite?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by poppy, Jan 10, 2005.

  1. poppy

    poppy Guest

    We don't care for dish network because it goes off everytime it gets cloudy or rains. While looking on the puter to see about resurecting our old c-band dish, I came across Free to Air satellite systems. If I read correctly, you buy a dish and receiver, and the programming is free. Has anyone tried one of these?
  2. 4sarge

    4sarge Well-Known Member

    Jan 8, 2005
    Sweet Owen County - Indiana
    Dish TV - I've had Dish TV for several years now and hardly ever do we have an outage. Cloudy days (or nights) do not seem to effect it and the only time that we seem to lose a signal is at the very heaviest part of a downpour or a lightning strike somewhere in the near proximity to our house. Even then, it will usually come back on within a few minutes and it probably isn't wise to use your television during such storms. At those times I use a portable radio that has AM/FM Weather Band and is powered either by battery or wind up. Now Comcast cable was another story - hard wired and out for days or weeks at a time and the supposed customer service department was rude and the monthly bills continued to escalate in price. Dish TV is my favorite luxury - Travel Channel along with all of the DYS programming is quite a joy.

  3. NancyinArkansas

    NancyinArkansas Well-Known Member

    Dec 12, 2002
    I would like to hear about this free tv too-THANKS -Nancy
  4. mike3367

    mike3367 lost in my own mind

    Dec 14, 2004
    Ada Ok.
    i work for a tv repair shop and have a dish dealer in are business, if your loosing your signal that much the dish needs to be realigned or a bigger dish installed. we have dish and it been off maybe a total of 2 or 3 hours for the year. and here in oklahoma the thunderstorms are huge and even then we only loose are signal maybe for the first minute or 2 of the storm. i got a a free to air dish, its a pansat 2500a so look it up on the net. if you only want free to air you are going to need a big dish and a motor to move the dish as there will only be a few free signal on each bird too look at. but it can be fun and there still lots of wild feeds to look at. i would also look into using ku band too as the network feeds are used on ku satallites.
  5. Janon

    Janon 993cc Geo Metro

    Aug 25, 2002
    Southern Ontario CANADA
    Yup, if you're losing the signal that often, you've got an alignment problem or too small a dish.

    FTA (free to air), most folks running these are "hacking" (replace the software in the unit with other software) which allows you to recieve commercial satellite service (Dishnetwork, Bell ExpressVu, etc.) without subscribing. In some countries, and with some commercial signals, this is legal. FTA was originally designed to catch all sorts of free sat signals... but nobody wants to watch those when they can have HBO, Cinemax, Showtime, NFL packages, Pay-Per-View, etc... all for free.

    I have two dishs on my roof. :)

  6. Cindy in KY

    Cindy in KY Well-Known Member

    May 10, 2002
    50 miles southwest of Louisville
    I had one of those 12 foot mesh satalite dishes up in the mountains of Colorado, a long time ago, when everything was free. The wild feeds were really neat, you could hear all the techs talking during the black areas where the local channels fill in their commercials. I would get 'Days of our Lives' at 6am the day before it aired, and tons of programming on the wild feeds. BUT, the lightning storms would constantly knock it out of alignment, and I would have to re-program every position of every satalite, and every channel on every satalite. Took a long time to do that. And we had lightning storms up there from spring till fall. And it was such a huge dish, it would always fill up with snow in the winter.

    I have Dish Network now, and mine does go out in very black, black skys & storms, and hard pouring rain. The tech told me you can find a Dish Network compatable dish, larger in size, made for states such as Alaska, for Dish Network programing, and it would not loose sight in the dark skys or rain. You would have to find it and buy it yourself. I re-align mine all the time, it's easy to do. I need to move my dish, it's on a wooden post, and all the rain will make it sway one way or the other. A big mule running into the post will also make the dish loose its signal. ;) Also, spiders get in the eye in the summer, and mess up the signal, they store their little 'catches' in there.
  7. ponyexpress

    ponyexpress Well-Known Member

    Feb 15, 2003
    You might also check to see if you have a tree that could be partially blocking your signal. We have Direct TV, and have only lost signal a few times in all the years we've had it. After the heavy wind and rain from Frances & Ivan, we had to re-align the post 3 times... And as Cindy said, the spiders do get in the eye, and we have to clean it out once a year. And during the big ice storm a few years back, the receiver "froze", but DH poured a pot of boiling water on it and thawed it out.
  8. perennial

    perennial Well-Known Member

    Aug 23, 2004
    We bought a digital receiver and put one of those metal antennas inside our attic and we get 18 stations all for "0" after the initial buying the the receiver. The receiver is just a small box that sits under our tv and hooks into it. Hubby knows the details as he put it in. The pictures we get are better than cable tv. Don't know what local stations you would be able to pull in, but it might be worth checking out.
  9. Gary in ohio

    Gary in ohio Well-Known Member Supporter

    May 11, 2002
    C band is going to be affect by rain as well, but with digital TV its more pronounced . With analog TV you get a fuzzy signal and can still see the video, with digital TV you loose the picture. If your having such an issue with dishnet then get a bigger antenna for dishnet. THey have larger dishes available. You can also mount your dishnet LNA on a big ku dish.

    Yes there are free content on C band and Ku band. You will not however get any of the "tradational" programming you get on cable/dish.

  10. CraftyDiva

    CraftyDiva Is anybody here?

    Aug 25, 2003
    You have to watch who your buying these systems from, some dealers are scammers (selling knockoffs or just take your money and run).

    This isn't a one time deal with these systems. It's not some plug and play thing. Your constantly upgrading programs as new info comes on the market. Plus if you mess up programing, you have a nice expensive paperweight. Here's a forum on this subject plus other equipment (cable descramblers, etc)
  11. Turalura

    Turalura Well-Known Member

    Nov 4, 2004
    Poppy, Sky Angel used to have a deal like you described. It's totally Christian and family oriented programing.