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[TowerTalk] trees as guy anchors

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Subject: [TowerTalk] trees as guy anchors
From: (David Clemons)
Date: Wed, 17 Sep 1997 14:40:08 -0400 (EDT)

        Here in Southeastern MA, we have pine trees which often grow 70 or 
80 feet tall, and 2 feet across the base.  Needless to say, these trees 
are solid.  When I first put up towers in the early 1980's, I guyed them 
into the base of such trees.  I made the assumption that a tree that size 
will sway a lot at the top but not at the base.  So, if the hardware used 
was properly sized, there should be no problems.

        A few years later, we were visited by Hurricane Gloria and its 
100 mph winds.  At that time I saw a lot large pine trees go down, 
including one used as a guy anchor.  The guying tree fell in such a way 
as to loosen the guy wire, and my neighbor and I went out to tighten it 
before the tower shook to pieces.  (We did have to keep looking up at the 
other trees while we worked because the winds were 100 mph and all the 
trees were creaking and cracking, not to mention bending over farther 
than I ever imagined that a tree could bend without breaking.  I am happy 
to say that the Good Lord spared a couple of foolish people on that day.)
Later on, when I moved and raised my towers, I did all my guying into the 

        Based on my experiences, my feeling is that you shouldn't use trees
as guy anchors if you can't guarantee that they won't ever fall down.

73, Dave Clemons K1VUT

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