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Antenna Experiment
This thread has 4 replies. Displaying all posts.
Post 1 made on Wednesday June 3, 2015 at 10:43
Long Time Member
July 2014
I wanted to experiment with my current Antenna. I have it attached to my chinmey and I own a bungalow so it isn't up super high, but it's up at least 30 feet.

Now, I live in between Toronto and Buffalo and get about 30 channels consistently.

I noticed that many people remove the "rods" from the bottom of their smaller antennas which supposedly gets you better range?

I have a large antenna:

So I was wondering what would happen if I removed those reflecting rods from the lower half of the antenna, would I get a better signal?

Currently I have the Antenna pointing Southeast towards Buffalo but I pick up the Toronto channels on the back side pretty well.

Ironically I first purchased two antennas and pointed one towards Toronto and one towards Buffalo but I got less channels. As soon as I disconnected the one pointing towards Toronto I got a lot more.

The only channels I'm not able to receive reliably are:
47 OMNI 1 Toronto - not sure why I'm not getting this, 40 OMNI 2 comes in fine.
51 ION TV in Batavia (got it once)
26 Jamestown (sometimes I get it in the winter)
67 MeTV (which does comes in about 75% of the time but the signal is very low)
56 CoziTV (local to Buffalo but got it once for a few days)
4 CBS which usually comes in during the winter but in Summer it stops probably due to trees

So I guess my question is, do you think it's worth it to try this idea? Or should I just leave it the way it is and hope someday these stations increase their range?
Post 2 made on Friday November 6, 2015 at 17:52
Ernie Gilman
Yes, That Ernie!
December 2001
Who are these people who remove some elements from their antennas?

The larger elements are for reception of lower channels. Do you have any VHF-Lo band channels in your area? That's 2 - 6. FM is right above 6, so these pick up FM, too, which could be its own problem.

Antenna amplifiers (you did not mention these, but anyway...) amplify all the signals in their frequency range that you can amplify. If you have no low-band VHF signals in your area, but, say, 30 FM stations, those FM stations will be amplified along with all the signals you want. (FM stations can be trapped out, that is, attenuated, too.)

Anyway, say you are running a bunch of stations from 7 on up through your system and the FM stations are so strong and plentiful that their signals distort in the antenna amp. Distortion gives rise to signals that are multiples of the original wavelengths, so FM could cause interference with your UHF reception on some channels, actually making UHF appear weaker.

The problem with two antennas is that both antennas receive all signals from the directions they are pointed at. If any channel hits both antennas with signficant phase difference, due, say, to reflections coming from an antenna not pointed at the station, these signals will mix and will attenuate or at least mess with the better signal. It's very unlikely that you will improve the signal of a channel by using two antennas pointed in different direction. With one antenna, you get what you get, which might be a clean strong signal or a weaker signal bounced off a mountain, but you only get that one signal, so it can be better.

I write "may" and "can" and "might" because all of this is subject to experimentation in your area. Years ago I did antennas for a chain of retails stores. In one location, moving five feet to the left absolutely killed channel 5! In another location, I had to back the antenna up near a 15 foot high brick wall parapet to kill reflections that were coming to the back of the antenna, creating ghosts (analog days).

...which brings up another thing. Most antennas receive almost as well directly onto the back of the antenna as they do onto the front. It's the sides where reception really falls off.
A good answer is easier with a clear question giving the make and model of everything.
"The biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place." -- G. “Bernie” Shaw
Post 3 made on Thursday November 12, 2015 at 12:30
Long Time Member
April 2007
YES! I not only REMOVE the bottom first four "rods" I even sometimes remove the second set of four "rods"on 4 bay antennas that I install. More traditional antennas work best but are very directional. Yes. I put up antennas for people in St. Catharines and surrounding area. What you need to know is that these antennas are actually rotary antennas to get your full bang for your buck. The problem is nobody likes only getting some channels and having to turn the antenna to get the other channels. Aiming a 4 bay antenna south east will get you 30 to 40 channels in the Niagara region. Don't expect to get channel 51, 56 or 67 all the time. They either only serve Buffalo, barely or are low power. Consider yourself living in what I call a "sweet spot" if you can get these channels all the time. 67 is easier to get than 56 and 56 is easier to get than 51. 51 barely reaches Buffalo from their transmitter site in Batavia.

YOU SHOULD be able to get all the major networks from both sides of the border with one 4 bay antenna aimed towards Buffalo. If you're having troubles getting Channel 4, 40 and sometimes 57, either raise the antenna higher or invest in a tower. The price you pay to put a 30 foot tower on your house will pay for itself in 12 months: you can connect one antenna to FOUR separate TV's

There's a 4 bay antenna with a built in pre-amp on the antenna itself and a booster that goes inside the house either before your splitter or behind the tv. Look for the name Electronic Master. That's the antenna I install, use on my house and have had the best luck with.
Post 4 made on Friday November 20, 2015 at 16:21
Senior Member
November 2003
Keaster2000 wrote - "you can connect one antenna to FOUR separate TV's"

Pretty sure with the right equipment you can connect to a lot more than 4 TV's
OP | Post 5 made on Wednesday May 11, 2016 at 09:05
Long Time Member
July 2014
I moved a last week and I had my antenna moved to my new house. I get almost all of the channels I did at my old house except for NBC and MeTV (which was hit and miss before).

I'm a little further away from Buffalo but I didn't think it would make a difference. I get CBS and ABC fine although ABC hasn't been as strong.

I'm not sure what to do, I had a "professional" put it up for me and had him point it towards Buffalo. I do have a fur tree on my neighbours property but I'm not sure if that's causing an issue.

Any suggestions?

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