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Old 10-12-2015, 01:29 PM   #1
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Newmar Owners Club
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: MidWest
Posts: 629
Winegard Rayzar Automated Antenna and Girard Awnings

OK, will try to answer several questions I've seen addressing the Winegard Rayzar Automated HD OTA Antenna and its compatibility with a "busy" RV roof. Our Winegard Motorized Sensar antenna failed on our last trip, in the up position of course!! I did a search for a replacement and discovered they are obsolete. I found the Winegard Rayzar Automated HD antenna but with much discussion and debate as to its viability on a coach with a "busy" roof. In our case "busy" is defined as 3 air conditioner/heat pumps, a domed satellite antenna, 2 full length Girard awnings and awning facades on the driver side and 3 Fantastic Fans with rain covers. I ordered the Rayzar 8500 from Amazon and it arrived this AM (Thanks Amazon Prime).

I pulled the Sensar antenna and discovered just a 2" hole penetration for the coax and the power cable for antenna motor. The "X" represents the placement of the new Rayzar antenna so you can see the relationship to the Girard awning to the right. (Note: I spoke to Winegard Tech Support, they stated maintaining a 12 inch clearance with surrounding metal would be sufficient for the antenna to work without interference.)

I connected the 72" coax to the existing coax with a female coax coupler (would be nice if Winegard included one in their retrofit kit).

I then placed the Rayzar Antenna in the middle of the coach roof ensuring adequate clearance from surrounding metal objects.

I then went into the coach and replaced the Sensar power panel with the Rayzar control panel.

Prior to removing the Sensar antenna I manually placed it in the "up" position and performed a TV channel scan; the TV reported 24 channels. Of the 24 channels, several of them were unwatchable due to pixilation and interference (I could not aim the antenna as the motor is dead AND I'm doing this in a metal garage with the doors open.)

After installing the Rayzar control panel I fired the system up and executed a channel scan. In about two minutes the LEDs stopped and the panel readout indicated 5 RF frequencies were located. I then performed a TV channel scan; the TV reported 25 channels. While stepping through the channels I discovered 1 that was pixilated, all the others were viewable with outstanding reception. I did not try to fine tune the antenna.

I will complete the installation of the antenna on Wednesday when the Dicor sealant arrives but for now, with a data point of "one" I'm very impressed with the initial performance!

Ken & Anita
2011 Newmar Essex, 45'- 4522, Cummins 500 ISM, 2013 CRV, RVI2 Brake with TPMS
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Old 10-12-2015, 06:29 PM   #2
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Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Over the next hill, around the next curve...
Posts: 2,394
Looking forward to seeing how this works when you get it out of the garage!!

We added the Rayzar Automatic about 6 months ago. At the same time, as I wanted a raisable mast to attach WiFi antenna to. So I also added a new Sensar IV manual antenna too. I figured sense I wanted a raisable mast, might as well add the new IV too. These are A/B switched into the TV, with the Rayzar Automatic being usually on.

I have found that the majority of the time, the Rayzar Automatic brings in all of the local channels that we use to augment our DirecTV. Only twice have I "B"'d over to the Sensar IV, on a fringe channel connection. And yes, it's raised and directional antenna, did bring in the channel. (Note: The Rayzar Automatic is manually adjustable, with a slick reconnection on where to point it, for optional channels. It picks direction that locks in on the highest volume of channels, and then leaves 'markers' in other directions you could point the automatic to try other channels.) I'd swag it the way I read it on another review. Say I'm 20 miles form a source with good line of sight, the automatic handles this well. But if I'm at say 25-30 miles away, and the automatic is having trouble holding the station. The IV will usually be able to bring that in.

My wife really likes the ability to 'just push a button', at the same time she raises the satellite for DirecTV - so it is the KISS approach!

Please let us know what you find out with out and about channel watching.

Oh, and if you find those awning rails are just too much of a PITA for your Automatic - just let me know where your are, and I'll come by and take that rig off your hands...


Roo II is our 04 Country Coach Allure 40'
OnDRoad for The JRNY! Enjoy life...
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Old 10-16-2015, 04:20 PM   #3
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Newmar Owners Club
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: MidWest
Posts: 629
Finished the install today. Centered the antenna mount position on the roof, installed mount hardware and sealed per Winegard directions. Then I added three metal Adel clamps on the coax to ensure the coax doesn't flex going down the road. Then added the roof seal over the coax exit and "wet" filled all of the old antenna fastener holes with new hardware and Dicor seal. I then removed the control panel and ensured the coax connectors were all well below the control panel mount opening (electrical short risk). When I re-ran the antenna scan I came up with two "aim points", 7 frequencies on one and 6 on the other. Again the TV reception was exceptional!

Ken & Anita
2011 Newmar Essex, 45'- 4522, Cummins 500 ISM, 2013 CRV, RVI2 Brake with TPMS
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antenna, awning

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