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[TowerTalk] Trylon Tower update #2

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Subject: [TowerTalk] Trylon Tower update #2
Date: Fri, 15 Jun 2001 22:31:26 -0400

     I gave up on digging the hole by hand!  (I can hear the I told you so's
now.)  Paid a fellow around here to come by this afternoon.  He made quick
work of getting down to the proper depth, but he couldn't finesse the bucket
enough to dig the undercut at the bottom of the hole.  Down I went (with
proper shoring, of course) and spent about an hour with the digging bar
chopping through the clay and scooping shovels full into his bucket for

     Next step is setting the form for the cap and flattening out the bottom
of the hole to make it the same depth below the top of the form.  I plan to
place a 2X4 across the top of the form and measure depth of the hole below
the 2X4 at one-foot intervals across the opening in both directions, then
correcting for high or low spots by digging or filling in where needed.
(Anybody have an easier way to check for level and flatness of the bottom?)

     Also, thanks to Brian N8WRL, I was able to bend the #6 rebar pretty
easily with a couple pieces of water pipe.  (The bends at the bottoms of
each vertical element of the rebar cage angle outward to fit into the
undercut.)  I wedged one short piece of black iron pipe in the backhoe's
outrigger footpad, angled it upward, and inserted the rebar into it to a
depth of 9 inches (where I wanted the bend).  I placed a four-foot long
piece of pipe over the other end of the rebar down to within two inches of
the shorter pipe.   I slowly pulled down on the long pipe until I got the
angle I wanted.  The effort required to bend the pipe was just enough to
offer resistance so I didn't overshoot the desired angle.  Took me 20
minutes or so to bend 24 pieces.

     Remaining work is placing the rebar cage, assembling the bottom tower
section and stub legs, placing and leveling in the hole and calling for
county inspector.   Then comes the fun - concrete truck!  But that's a hole
other story.

     Stay tuned.

73 de
Gene Smar  AD3F
P.S.  I forgot how much a little backhoe can wreck a lawn!  I'll need a bit
of grass of seed in the fall.

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