These aren't really towers, but they're small !
View looking S.W. That's a snow storm coming over the Sierras in the background (Jan 2,'04)
Tower #1- AB577-GRC 45'
Click on Image for Details
Antennas - TH7DX Beam 80 Inverted "L"
Tower #2 - AB577-GRC 55'
Click on Image for Tower 2 Details
Antennas - 40-2CD 40M Beam 160M Dipole
Tower #3 - Ya Right! You gotta be kiddin' me.
Click on Image for Details
Antenna - Homebrew C3 Triband Beam
45' Tall 3" Dia Aluminum Tube
Antennas on the Mast- 80 Inverted Vee Part of the 160M Dipole
This is an ex-KT34XA boom that was extended (the rest of the antenna is in one of the piles). It was the first antenna support put up at the new QTH. It is attached to the eaves of the garage at about 10' and guyed with 1/4" dacron rope at the 30' level. The wire antennas at the top are part of the guy supports. It looks scary, but has seen several 80-90 mph storms. It was a real hoot to put up by myself on a cold windy day before CQWW '95. It's not very straight anymore, one day the neighbors horse got out and ran into one of the guys and almost brought it down. We took it down in 2001 and tried to straighten it. It is what it is! Still suitable for holding some wires.
I get a headache thinking about all of the "dumb" antennas that have been hung off this mast. Gotta have something to hang one off of before doing it! It turns out that none of them were particularly dumb, they worked lots of stations, and were way more useful than not having anything there. There was a day where it held every antenna, then it carried every antenna connected to R2. Having a second radio on-line with anything to connect it to is better than nothing!
Click on Image for Tower Layout Details
Figuring out where to put things is an entertaining exercise.
Everything here can be handled by the designated station maintenance crew (me)! At least, that way it gets done the way I think it should be done (right or wrong). If you are wondering why I haven't put up a "real tower".......
The locals passed a 35' height restriction on hams after I moved here, it used to be 75' by right. The metropolis has come to the wilderness! It only takes $1050 up front, to invite everyone to a hearing, for every structure that exceeds one single 35' something..... just to ask for permission. That's the same restriction I moved away from on the 1/4 acre city lot in the high density So. Cal tract housing. "Reasonable accomodation?", Hmmm....
In 2001, Nevada passed AB61, which incorporated PRB-1 into state law, requiring all local governing bodies to revisit antenna ordinances. My neighbor approached the County to get a permit to put up a crankup tower and was told that anything over 35 feet in height was "not allowed." He pointed out the new state law and that got things moving. We went to a planning commission meeting and presented our case for "resonable accomodation" and asked the commission to reject the new proposed ordinance. That was well received, and the commission sent the matter back to the staff to get with the local hams and come up with something new. We had a meeting and tried to convince the staff to draft an ordinance that would allow a 72' tower with antennas on top of it. They couldn't get past the 75' total height examples they had found in other ARRL related cases, so that's what we ended up getting. The current ordinance has a very unusual clause in it that notifies all adjacent neighbors of the permit application, giving them a chance to oppose the issuance of the tower permit. Then, they have to have a hearing before the planning commission so everyone can argue about it. I don't know that it's ever actually happened yet. It's not a particularly intelligent ordinance, but better than what we had, and better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.
I learned something very interesting during this process. It turns out that the County has hired some Certified Professional Planners. These people all come from the big city, and the only thing they know about is how to make a city bigger, more crowded, more regulated, and more undesireable to live in. They have absolutely no idea that some people moved away from the city to a rural area to get away from that mess! They look at you like you have two heads if you suggest that you do not want them controlling every aspect of your life. They think that everyone was born to live in a nice neat little apartment building and have "them" take care of everything for you. It is truely a frightful situation.
It is encouraging to think that I might get to have a real tower or two....one of these days.
You may have noticed all the towers and antennas are painted. I used Rust-Oleum Gray Primer #1980. It's a dull blue/gray and does a good job of making things stealthier. I haven't had one complaint in the last 5 years.
Here are the rest of the towers
120'+ of Rohn 45G 90' of Rohn HW 100' of Rohn 25G
All that pvc pipe, plus some, is now in the ground. The two saw horses in the right picture are laying down because I put them that way, didn't take too long for me to figure out that within a week, the wind would do it for me. This is a pretty old photo, you can see the overhead cables running out back at eaves height. That stuff is now in all that pvc pipe. In the upper right is one of my many temporary antenna experiments. That was a 24' mast, one of the guys is the white line running down to the stake near the tower pile. That mast held a 10M dipole, and later was put up to 30' with a triband dipole that rotated on the Ham III rotator that now turns the C3. Worked great, compared to the previous triband inverted vee I had up on the 45' mast for the second radio.