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Old 04-21-2007, 04:40 AM   #1
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After lusting over them for a couple years, I finally got the go-ahead from wife to start looking into getting a roof-mounted satellite-internet system. An aircard works quite well, but we still find ourselves in quite a few locations where broadband is only a distant memory.

We'll be at the Holiday Rambler pusher-rally in Goshen next month, and I hope to get some first-hand and up-close contact with the various offerings at that time.

In the meantime, I'd appreciate hearing about any pluses or minuses anyone has experienced with theirs. I've been following the breed by searching here, and now am looking at/for particulars.

TIA,
Ron
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Old 04-21-2007, 04:40 AM   #2
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After lusting over them for a couple years, I finally got the go-ahead from wife to start looking into getting a roof-mounted satellite-internet system. An aircard works quite well, but we still find ourselves in quite a few locations where broadband is only a distant memory.

We'll be at the Holiday Rambler pusher-rally in Goshen next month, and I hope to get some first-hand and up-close contact with the various offerings at that time.

In the meantime, I'd appreciate hearing about any pluses or minuses anyone has experienced with theirs. I've been following the breed by searching here, and now am looking at/for particulars.

TIA,
Ron
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Old 04-21-2007, 05:37 AM   #3
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Ron, I am currently using an iDirect F2 dish which is a little larger than the F1 dish you would use,but the idea is the same.

Not sure whether Bill will be in Goshen,but you can give him a call...He's an iRV2 member as well! He also has contracts with installers around the country if he's not in your area personally.

Bill Adams
www.InternetAnywhere.us
321-431-2276

My install (and service provider) is Mobilsat.com and they are a roving East Coast dealer if you're over on this side of the U.S.

The only "new" question you will now ask the campground,in addition to rig size and the number of slides is whether or not your site has a view of the unobstructed sky...
Not that big of a deal....
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Old 04-23-2007, 01:40 AM   #4
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Thanks, Bob. I know that, if you'd recommend something, it's sure to be a winner. Been following your ... ahhh... beta-testing (let's say) on a lot of stuff, you're the first thing I look for after hitting the Monaco Forum

Darn, I forgot all about Bill Adams, thanks. I've tried to figure out which ISP, etc, so maybe a call to him is the ticket. And I always prefer to go with recommended items/people.

Yup, well-versed in 'the southern exposure' request. Have had a KVH dome for quite awhile, and before a lot of CG's knew what it meant I used to get a lot of funny looks.

As a kid, I have a lot of fond beach-memories of growing-up right where y'all are now Was a tad less-developed back then. Water looks the same, tho.
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Old 04-23-2007, 07:57 PM   #5
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Hi Ron,
I have been using HughesNet for the past year and I am very happy with the performance. I got my MotoSat installed by Bill Adams last Aug at the Monaco Comming home rally in Salem OR. I have been very please with the system and the support from Bill. Bill is at www.internetanywhere.us
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Old 04-28-2007, 07:25 PM   #6
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Ron.

In reply to your post, satellite-based internet is like most everything else. There are a lot of choices for you to make. Generally, price determines which dish and which internet service platform that most people choose. There are other dishes available, but many people use the MotoSAT DataStorm F1 or F2 dish. If you are only going to be using the dish for personal use, and don't require a business class internet service, the F1 is an excellent choice. You can get the F1 with either a 1 watt or 2 watt BUC. If you intend to travel to the fringes of the satellite "footprint" then the 2 watt BUC is a better choice. The only Internet Service available with the F1 is the HughesNet Access 100 plan. One advantage of the F1 is that you can add a BOW and get satellite TV as well.(TV is billed seperately from your internet by a completely different company) From MotoSAT, the F1 is the lowest cost option, and for the general internet user, it is certainly adequate.

If you intend to use the internet for business or if you have higher bandwidth requirements, you might want to get the F2. It is a larger dish, but it gives you a number of options as to the BUC's that are available, as well as the internet service platforms that you can use. With the F2, and a 2 watt BUC, you can get 3 different HughesNet packages, and 1 iDirect package. If you move up to a 4 watt BUC, you can get even more options. The F2 is more money, but for many people, it offers a level of flexibility that they need.

As far as service goes, HughesNet is by far the most popular among RV'ers, as it is sufficient for most individuals needs and it is less expensive per month. iDirect is geared more towards the business and enterprise market. If you are running a business from your RV, then that might be a consideration as well.

I would recommend that you consider your current need, but also whether your needs are going to change in the future. It would be better to get a slightly more expensive upgradeable piece of equipment and have fewer issues in the future than to get something that really doesn't meet your needs.

I hope this helps a little.

Jamie Billingsley
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Old 04-29-2007, 03:35 AM   #7
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JamieB, WELCOME to iRV2 and nice post!

For some more in depth information you might check this forum out as well....

Datastorm Users Forum
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Old 04-29-2007, 04:19 AM   #8
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I second that welcome Jamie! Learned more about satellite systems in your single post than I have in the last 8 years of fulltiming!

We're currently a DirectV user while on the road and have been thinkin' about adding the HughesNet internet service. We carry two computers in our Fifth Wheel, a laptop and a desktop, both of which are equipped with WiFi adapters to pick up our secure network WiFi router signal wired to the local phone company's DSL modem.

Will the HughesNet modem coming off an upgraded dish allow us to do the same?

Dave
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Old 04-29-2007, 04:43 AM   #9
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Dave, you will certainly be able to access the Hughesnet signal with your computer by way of a wireless router. I'm sitting at my dinette table as I type this and the router is in the closet at the back of the coach.
iRV2 member John_Canfield is the one I hold "responsible" for hooking me on this mode of accessing the internet.
For the install of an automatic roof top dish you're looking at an investment of around $4995, which is an F1 dish with a 1 watt BUC.
The "hybrid" F1 with a 2W BUC is a little more money...
The F1 1watt setup would most likely be more than you'd need for surfing and email.
The F1 is .74 meters in an "elliptical" size.

In my personal instance, having been used to cable internet speeds and needing the capability to send large files and such, I opted for the F2 setup. This package would run you around $7995.

If you're here on the East Coast and interested in an install, you might contact Bud Burton with Mobilsat Technologies...(757 312-8300).
They are an east coast roving dealer with four installers and can take care of your install.
Bud's crew did my install and they were very professional and helpful.

Anywhere else in the U.S. can be covered by iRV2 member Bill Adams of InternetAnywhere.com as he and his wife travel around the U.S. doing installs and also have several arrangements with contract installers around the country.

For even more information, you could also peruse the aforementioned Datastorm forum.
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Old 04-29-2007, 05:36 AM   #10
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Ron: If you are really interested in the DataStorm automatic satellite system that Bill Adams and Bud Burton sell and install, you might be interested in attending the DataStorm Users Rally held Oct 21-27, 2007 at the Beaudry RV Resort in Tucson. More information is available on the DataStorm Users Forum (link provided by Bob Gregory).
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Old 04-29-2007, 06:38 AM   #11
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Dave.

To answer your question. Yes. Almost everyone prefers to have a wireless router installed with their system for remote access. Many of you have seen the DataStorm outdoor hardware, but probably not so many have seen the indoor part of it. Let me describe a typical install for you.

Inside your coach, you would have the following. 1.Controller 2.Modem 3.Router

The Controller is the box that tells the dish what to do. It is about the size of a large book. It has the programing in it that knows what satellite you are assigned to, etc. You will probably hear people talk about a D2 or a D3. That is the controller and the D3 is the latest version.

The modem is the box that is from the internet service platform and it talks to the satellite. HughesNet has several modems, but the current offering consists of the HN7000S and the DW7000. Most people who purchase a new system get the HN7000S model. Older versions were the 4000 series and the 6000 series. If you are on the iDirect platform, the modem would more than likely be the 3100 series unless you were really needing some advance features and they have a couple other offerings that I have never had to install.

The router can be just like the router you might have in your home. Many people use a Linksys router as they seem to have easy setup and many people are familiar with them.

Those are the three main components of an satellite-based internet system. Now, let me describe a typical installation that we do.

From your power source, we install a high-quality power strip/surge protector. We will need at least 6 outlets. We mount the Controller, the Modem, and the router in such a way as there is adequate airflow. Even though they are not pulling much power, they do generate heat, and that can kill electronics. Depending on the configuration of the cabinet, we put at least one (and sometimes more) small fan in the cabinet to move air. All of the wiring is then routed neatly and zip-tied for a neat clean appearance. We go to great lengths to ensure a nice looking and functional installation. Finally, we configure the wireless router to the customer's desired setup with security. That's it.

As far as who does your installation, there are a number of great installers accross the country. Any one of them will do you a great job. You can look on DataStormusers.com and get a list of installers in your area. I would recommend calling and talking to several before you choose. This is a significant investment and you should be comfortable with who is going to be working on your "baby".

If I can be of any assistance, I am located in NW Arkansas, and my area of operation is basically Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Missouri. If you are outside of that area, I would still be happy to assist you with equipment choices and suggestions, and try to help you find a good dealer/installer in your area.

Happy RV'ing.

Jamie Billingsley
Satellite Internet Solutions.
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Old 04-29-2007, 07:20 AM   #12
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Another nice post Jamie and I apologize for "leaving you out" in my earlier recommendations as I had no idea you were a dealer/installer.

I will be at Beaudry in Tucson and hope to meet many of you there...
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Old 04-29-2007, 07:41 AM   #13
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No problem.

You have a really nice forum here and I am glad I found it last night.

Jamie
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Old 04-29-2007, 03:17 PM   #14
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by JamieB:
No problem.

You have a really nice forum here and I am glad I found it last night.

Jamie </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Thanks so much for clearing up my question Jamie. We're glad you found us too!

And Ron (ronboc), many thanks for letting me temporarily hijack your thread.

Dave
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