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[TowerTalk] Disconnecting cables and lightning (questions --

To: <>
Subject: [TowerTalk] Disconnecting cables and lightning (questions --
From: (Tom Rauch)
Date: Wed, 03 Jun 1998 17:22:32 +0000
To: <>
> Date:          Wed, 03 Jun 1998 13:20:36 -0400 (EDT)
> From:
> Subject:       Re: [TowerTalk] Disconnecting cables and lightning (questions 
> --
> To:  ,

>      I have never seen in any credible literature relating to grounding
> systems where disconnecting anything is recommended. I think it's reaching
> 'old wife's tale' status. And don't forget that most of the people
> recommending it (hams) only have their anecdotal experiences to back it up. 

Hi ho Steve,

Let me repeat what I think you are saying:

1.) Commercial stations can't afford to be off the air for any 
amount of time.

2.) Commercial stations don't disconnect their antennas during 

>From that you conclude commercial stations leave their antennas 
connected, because it helps prevent lightning damage.


As an past installer of broadcast and two way radio systems, I agree 
with one and two above. I don't, however, agree with the theory 
that they leave the antennas connected because it improves lightning 
survival. That argument is a circular, because the very act of 
disconnecting feedlines would put them right off the air...and we 
agree they can't afford to have that happen!

On the other hand, I can disconnect my antennas *without* loss of 
revenue and enjoy the additional protection it affords my equipment. 
I do just that. i feel much safer with my equipment unplugged, and my 
feedlines disconnected outside the house (I have a very large ground 
system and the tower is a safe distance away). 

Different restrictions and applications often call for different 
solutions. Unlike simple mechanical cookbook cures, one shoe does not 
fit all in this situation. The safest place for your equipment is NOT 
attached to the tower, even if commercial stations that MUST remain 
on the air can't afford to disconnect and go QRT. 

73, Tom W8JI

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