Saturday, August 7, 2010

Tower Work at KD8JHJ Continued

Tower improvements at KD8JHJ are now complete.  This morning I painted the tower with a fresh coat of aluminum paint.  This is how a communications tower should look- Silver and shiny gleaming in the sun. 
 I painted the same way I did 15 years ago when I painted this tower the first time.  At the very top I used a spray can because at the top triangle with the center tube welded in the middle things are pretty tight.  For the rest of the tower I placed a rubber kitchen glove on my right hand and then a cotton work glove.  I fashioned a hook from copper wire that allows me to hang a quart paint can from the rungs and easily move it down as I go.  The paint is then hand applied much like the finger painting I loved as a child.  With repeated finger dippings into the paint can the cotton glove is soon saturated and applying the paint is easy.  The cuff of the rubber glove rolled out and over the work glove prevents the excess paint from dripping down your arm.
 Hanging on a tower for two hours is a lot more physically demanding than it sounds.  I am glad this work is finally done and I can now enjoy my antenna system.

End Fed Half Wave Array at KD8JHJ
20, 30 and 40 Meters

Tie Down Cleats

Yesterday I cut a piece of 1" maple and screwed three cleats to it and then screwed the whole thing to the base of the maple tree in the back yard where the antenna support cords terminate.  Having a separate cleat for each antenna allows me to easily adjust the tension individually for a uniform look and also quickly let some sag into the wires if high winds are forecast. 


  1. Your antenna system is lookin' sharp. Nice job. I want to see your new silver shoes!

  2. Great idea for painting the tower. At first I was wondering how you got the job done so quickly. Years ago when I had a tower, I used a brush and it took forever. I wish I was more clever back then!

  3. Hi Jack,
    Nice to hear from you again. Yep it's not my idea but the glove method works great. I can't remember who told me to do it that way. Someone I once worked with I think. I did manage to keep my shoes splatter free but did end up with silver arms.