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[Yaesu] G-800SDX Rotator

To: <yaesu@contesting.com>
Subject: [Yaesu] G-800SDX Rotator
From: "Paul J. Piercey" <p.piercey@nl.rogers.com>
Date: Mon, 3 Mar 2008 20:23:42 -0000
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I have always been a fan of Yaesu rotators until now. I got a G-800SDX last
year and I have to admit that I am truly disappointed with it's operation.
I had a G-400RC for 15 years and it never gave me any trouble. I upgraded my
beam and the 400 wouldn't hold the antenna in the wind so I opted for a
heavier duty rotator and the 800SDX seemed to fit the bill. I have found
that it is very good at holding its position but is sadly lacking in
rotating power. It struggles in moderate wind and, currently, is unable to
rotate my antenna any more than 5 degrees for some unknown reason.
The beam had spun on the mast so I dropped the tower and tilted it to
tighten up the mast clamps. When I had the beam loosened completely, I tried
to rotate the mast to the correct position. When the mast had almost reached
the proper alignment, it stopped and would go no further, nor would it go
back to where it came from. I checked the installation and found nothing
that could be impeding the rotation. After an hour of testing and trying to
get it to move, it finally came free and I could complete the job.
Once I had tilted the tower back to vertical, I tested the rotator. It
rotated in one direction and, when testing it in the opposite direction, it
stopped and has not been able to move more than a few degrees since.
It seems that even the smallest resistance causes the thing problems. I have
about 80ft of cable from my shack to the rotator.
This is not the first time it has locked up. It happened a couple months ago
and I thought it may have been due to freezing rain but we have had much
worse weather since then and, until this morning, had been operating,
despite it's lack of turning power, in wind, cold, freezing rain, etc.
Anyway, I will be completely re-aligning the rotator and re-cabling it as
soon as the weather gets better but if it continues to operate in this
manner, I'll be replacing it.
Does anyone know the rotational torque of this rotator? If mine is any
indication, it can't be very high.
73 -- Paul VO1HE
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