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[Towertalk] tower rope notes

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Subject: [Towertalk] tower rope notes
From: (W0UN--John Brosnahan)
Date: Sat, 07 Sep 2002 11:02:02 -0500
Here are a couple of short thoughts on tower ropes.

1)  ------------------
I prefer to use 3/8 inch and 7/16 inch BRAIDED rope (such
as the double-braided Samson Stable-Braid rope that I
previously mentioned, so that I can use mountain climbing
gear for doing tower/antenna work.

I especially like to use ascenders to grab the ropes.  An
ascender is like a light-weight Klein grip designed for
mountain climbing ropes rather than for steel cables.
REI is a good source for these   and do a search for ASCENDERS

And look around at ALL of the mountain-climbing gear to
get a better idea on the use of the equipment.

See this page for Klein grips if you are not familiar with

For quick connections to the ascender or to support pulleys or
slings you needs lots of carabiners from REI.  The light-weight
mountain-climbing gear is more than adequate for most ham
towers (Rohn 25/45/55) and antennas.

On the back end of my John Deere "Gator" I have a rare
STEEL carabiner and an ascender hooked up.  So I can clip
onto the rope at any point that I want to grab it.   Sure beats
tieing and UNtieing knots all of the time.  And the gator is the
perfect tow vehicle.  It is strong enough to pull up tower
sections or tram up antennas with up to 60 ft booms, but not
strong (like a truck) to break things if something gets
hung up.  And my old Gator has a 4x4 ft box on the back
that is perfect for keeping my gear close at hand.

2)  ------------------------
Another note on ropes.   I do a lot of climbing by myself
and like to tie the rope onto my belt and drag it up behind me.
But I hate to lay the rope out on the ground--especially if there
are stickers or the ground is muddy or covered in "tangly"
things.   I have started storing my ropes in tubs by just randomly
feeding the rope into the tub, rather than neatly coiling it up after
every use.  The rope then pulls out of the tub with no twisting
and no tangling, and follows you up the tower with no contact
with the ground.  The black plastic tubs I use are FREE--when
you buy a tree or shrub from the nursery for landscaping.  I prefer
the larger tubs--18 to 24 inches in diameter and 12 to 16 inches
deep.  My ropes never tangle anymore and the random piling
of the rope into the tub provides lots of air space and helps them
to dry out if I happen to be working in the rain.

73--John   W0UN

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