We have been so pleased that we purchased a Winegard Traveler (Directv) and didn't go the tripod route. Although it was a lot of money, that one-button automatic setup has just been a wonderful thing to have, especially as we are still in heavy-duty travel/sightseeing mode.
We have had very few stays where our dish was blocked, but we did have one of about three weeks at one stop last year so we procured off Craigslist a $5 round dish and a $10 tripod and a short piece of PVC at the Home Depot as the mast.
We presently are in a spot for a month where the signal to our Traveler is blocked by the trees. So, it was time to break out for the very first time our backup dish. We watched a couple YouTube videos on resetting the dish setup on the box and aiming the satellite. After setting the elevation, leveling the tripod, and adjusting the azimuth standing next to the dish with a hand held compass, we plugged the outdoor cable into the box and turned it on to change the dish specs. After specing 18 inch round, multiswitch, and one tuner, we got the top green check (Odd, 13v), the bottom red X (Even 18v) and a message that said there was no signal to the second receiver. Not being sure what that meant as we had only speced the setup for one tuner, we tried a bunch of stuff (alternating the connections on the box and at the LNB) only to keep receiving the same error message (which we subsequently figured out was normal) and now always with two red X's (which still doesn't seem what we should see). We were ready to give up and find a Directv truck and see if we could hire some professional help. So we went to exit the setup routine and it wouldn't seemingly allow us to exit out, so instead we hit the continue button. Then the most amazing thing in the world happened. It went all the way through all its routines at the end of which we had picture. We checked the signal strength and as it was at about 80, we made no further adjustments at all and just tightened every nut down. No align a sight, no meter, and just a hand held compass where we really couldn't even get behind the dish and we caught the signal off that 101 satellite. As we are in Las Vegas right now, we are taking this luck to the casino.
But can anyone give us any counsel on why we are seeing red x's instead of green checks? And why in spite of the red x's, we were still able to get signal?