[Top] [All Lists]

[TowerTalk] Tower lighting

To: <>
Subject: [TowerTalk] Tower lighting
From: (
Date: Fri, 13 Jun 1997 12:19:27 EDT
   Your advise is VERY dangerous.   If your tower is within the Airport
rules, you better do it right.  If the FCC/FAA found you using
non-approved devices, the fines would be in the multiple $10,000 range.  
If an aircraft hit it, make it in the multiple $100,000 range, plus all
the multi-million dollar law suit's from the victim's families.
   This also requires alarm devices if a light fails, and notification to
the FAA within a half-hour, or stiff fines can be levied!   When my pager
goes off with a tower light failure alarm any hour of the day or night,
it is a BIG EMERGENCY,   N O W   !  !  !
    A couple years ago a Lifeline helicopter hit a unlighted tower in
Virginia, and since then the issue has been expedited to the front.  
They're still not sure how many million$ it is going to cost the tower
owner by the time all the FCC/FAA and court cost/fines/lawsuits are
settled the last thing I read. 
   Federal law has changed greatly over the past few years.  Don't take
someones advise on how they did it 5, 10, or 15 years ago.   You will
find it very hard to argue with a FCC/FAA agent when he can show you the
current law(s) you are breaking, and the resulting thousands of dollars
of fines.   They don't listen arguments of so and so said so and so.  
Don't waste your or his time!   The current federal ideology seems intent
on how to add a few more thousand$ to it's income, and they've been
exploiting this FCC/FAA route the past couple years.  I've personally
been in on some inspections, which fortunately found all OK.

73's de Stephen, K0SD
Senior Technician with Mobile Media, 2nd largest paging Co in USA

On Thu, 12 Jun 1997 11:37:04 -0500 Lee Buller <>
>Why would there ever be a need to light a ham radio tower?  Lights on 
>tower are very expensive.  If I remember right from my broadcast 
>days; a typical flashing beacon light is very large (larger than you 
>think) and is composed of two 620 watt light bulbs.  I think the 
>figures are so big that they really wouldn't fit well on 25G...but 
>well on
>55G.  The bulbs are expensive.  They don't make the 115 volt bulbs 
>so you have to run 220 volts up the tower.  Typical side lights are 
>watts with two bulbs too.  
>I think the rules state that on commercial towers the voltage sag from 
>bottom to the top has to under three percent.  That means a lot of 
>wire going to the top of the tower.
>Also, the rules state that anything under 200 feet doesn't have to use
>lights or be painted in alternate International Orange and 
>White.  Now that might be different if your tower is in the flight 
>of some airport.  The FAA will have a lot to say about that.
>If I was going to light my tower, and I cannot figure out why anyone 
>would want to except for vanity, I would use some 12 volt tail lights 
>could get from any auto parts store.  Use a 555 timer to flash 
>them...and be
>done with it.  
>The whole project sounds like a waist of time to me.  I really don't 
>the neighbors to notice the tower anyway.
>FAQ on WWW:     
>Administrative requests:

FAQ on WWW:     
Administrative requests:

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>