I had the same problem! A quick, easy, cheap fix!! What you need is a Winegard EK-1036 Directional Handle Extension. I think Winegard charged me about $2 for it. Complain enough and they might send you one. You will need an allen wrench to remove the handle and a hacksaw to cut the plastic handle in order to do it yourself.
It is a plastic piece to extend the plastic direction handle. The handle is too short, and the splines are barely long enough to make contact, and easily stripped. You will need to measure and cut the existing handle, and then glue this piece on to extend it.
Also, check the direction that the little alignment notch is pointing. Mine was pointing to the front. It needs to be pointing to the back!! I learned that when I put in my extension. The handle is indexed and only goes in one way, and not the way WRV mounted it. With the short handle, it could be jambed in there the wrong direction. (It doesn't work, of course, but it went in!) At least one other '04 I know of had the same problem as mine. It is easily turned around by removing the 4 screws.
On mine, the crank Lundy is talking about was not a problem. From what you describe, I doubt it is your problem either.