WE’VE HAD OUR 2010 Bailey Pegasus 462 for 11 months and during that time have never had good TV reception. This was because when Bailey was building the caravan, they asked me to test an internal TV antenna.
I agreed to do it, having been assured by the British distributor – the aerial was made in Germany – that the digital reception was virtually as good as that from a directional aerial. It wasn’t, despite several attempts to rectify various problems. The manufacturer even flew a technician over from Germany but to no avail.
So finally, I had a Status 530 aerial fitted. However, with the caravan parked on my drive I still couldn’t get any digital reception and only very poor analogue reception. This didn’t surprise me as TV reception in our area is generally poor. And I wasn’t surprised not to get anything at the NEC campsite because I’ve never met anyone who did got a picture when they stayed there.
At the recent Caravan & Motorhome show at the NEC, Scan-Terieur asked me if I would test their new aerial – the Teleco Teleplus X2. They told me it was basically a straight swap for the 530 so I agreed, carrying out the work when I was back at home after the show.
Without even trying to point the aerial in the direction of my local transmitter, I ran an auto search and immediately found around 20 digital stations. Each one was transmitted with superb picture and sound quality. There were also a few analogue stations, although these were nowhere near the standard of the digital ones.
The other thing that impressed me was the price. The Teleco TelePlus X2 has an SRP of £129.95, which compares very favourably with the price of the Status 530.
Swapping a Vision Plus Status 530 aerial for a Teleco TelePlus X2 antenna, step-by-step:
[tl:gallery size=460×307]1. Having withdrawn the Status 530 up through the roof of the caravan, I removed the two screws holding the locking plate in the roof locker in position so that I could also remove it and the taper washer under it.
2. On the roof I undid the three screws securing the upper collar of the Status aerial and lifted it off the lower collar.
3. Next, I undid the three screws securing the lower collar and used my Stanley knife to cut through the silicone sealant underneath the gasket. I was then able to remove the collar and the remaining silicone to leave a completely clean surface.
4. It was then that I found that the Teleplus wasn’t a straight swap for the Status. This was because it only had one collar, which was integral with the screwed tube, and it was also smaller in diameter than the upper collar of the Status.
5. Having fitted the aerial to the column using the four screws supplied, I ran non-setting bedding mastic around the collar. The instructions said to use silicone mastic but I prefer the non-setting type since it is easier to remove should it become necessary.
6. As you can see, because the collar on the Teleco Teleplus was smaller than the one on the Status, I had to refit the three screws which had secured the Status collar – making sure that I had filled the holes with mastic to prevent water ingress.
[tl:gallery size=460×307]7. Inside the caravan, I mounted the booster unit on the cupboard wall and connected its 12V leads to the caravan’s 12V supply, taking care to ensure the correct polarity. Then I fitted the co-axial cable from the aerial and the two co-axial cables from the aerial sockets in the caravan. Note: turning the handle at the bottom of the mast clockwise moves the aerial from the horizontal to the vertical plane.
[tl:gallery size=460×307]8. With the TV connected, I ran the Auto Search function, which found 67 digital TV channels and over 20 radio channels. Although I didn’t check the reception on all the TV channels, those I did view had both excellent audio and visual reception. The analogue Auto Search resulted in fewer channels and poorer reception – not that this matters since the analogue signal will be soon be turned off in the forthcoming digital switchover.
I am very impressed with the Teleco TelePlus X2 antenna. It retails at £129.95 and is available from a range of caravan dealers around the country.
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