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[TowerTalk] Painting Antennas

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Subject: [TowerTalk] Painting Antennas
From: (
Date: Mon, 19 May 1997 12:36:38 -0700
Good morning, Scotty.

Yes - have a lot of experience painting antennas and towers.

The fastest method is to use a mit. This is like a car wash mit. You put on 
a latex glove first, then the mit. Dip it in the paint, grab the element and 
s-l-i-d-e. Real easy. After it drys, I hit it with a darker shade to break 
up the solid color. Just be sure the tubing is clean. Have used a variety of 
cleaners and most work fine, including alcohol. Try a small area first!

Have used fast dry enamel mostly, matte finish. Colors used on elements have 
been gray, blue, green, black, white. The most effective are gray (light 
base, dark accents) and, when in foliage areas, green (medium base, darker 
accents). The  blue always seems like a good idea, but the sky rarely 
matches! Black is a fair all around choice. White (i.e. off-white) stands 
out in almost all sky conditions. Have also camo-painted to match bare 
California (dry grass colored) hillsides using a tan-yellow base and brown 

Have also painted towers to match the surrounding trees and leaves. Masts 
are usually not too bad, as the coloring is usually matte-looking anyways.

The most important is to not have a solid color, as the eye likes to follow 
a line. Our elements are of 6061-T6 and the individual sections are in 
varying shades of matte-gray, so they tend to disappear without painting, 
but I do paint them for folks. The neighbors recognize that you are going 
out of your way to help.

The only time there has been any electrical difficulty was when we painted 
over an outer fiberglass insulator on a linear loaded antenna with some 
special camo paint. It turned out to be somewhat conductive - oops!

Hope this helps!

Have a good day and 73,
                        Tom, N6BT
                        Force 12 Antennas and Systems
                        (Home Page )

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