I know of plenty of real life stories of a guys who pays a lot of money for
a tower. Obviously, the sky's the limit if you buy all the parts new, at
full retail, and have professionals (or expensive amateurs for that matter)
put it up for you, all "turn-key." Even guyed towers can be expensive, if
you pick up the phone, call some tower company, and say, "Just come over and
do it." An example, a 60' or so Rohn 25 (okay, might have been 45, not
sure), that cost $5,000. That struck me as rather expensive.
At the local ham club I have quite often heard of free towers -- someone
moves out of the area or whatever and gives his tower to the ham club to
find a good home for, that kind of thing. If you "get connected" like that
and let it be known what you're looking for, and if you're patient, these
things often do come around.
And, especially if it's 35-40' or even 60 or 70' -- but especially at the
shorter end of the range, let's say 40' -- there is quite often enough
know-how among the local club guys, and often enough goodwill, that you can
often find a couple guys with some experience doing it who will come over
and help you put it up. This is the "old fashioned way" that things were
done in the ham world, I think, before people got the bigger incomes and
less time available that's led to a lot of top dollar paid professionals
doing the work.
So, it comes down to a short list of things you probably do have to pay for,
like concrete and a roll of guy wire, but even that might come with the
freebie tower you got. And labor, which even middle-aged people -- and some
of the robust seniors I've met too! -- can do. You can dig the holes
yourself by trying not to do it all at once -- go do five minutes' worth of
digging then go back to watching TV -- and go out again during the next
I do appreciate there is a dollar figure that can be assigned to what it
"costs," and I think that's what the original poster was looking for. But,
if it's an article that's being written, it really should point out that it
doesn't HAVE to cost that (though it may be WORTH that), that the good ole
ham way to do it was to scrounge and get you buddies to help, etc.
I have heard that our PVRC North Carolina guys -- Winston-Salem area I
think -- kind of have a tower "posse" and they have a list of guys who want
a tower -- I think they may have some kind of standardized setup they
install -- probably 40', maybe 60', I'm not sure -- and they have been going
down the list putting up towers for each other, and I'll bet they have their
costs down to a minimum, just what's necessary.
73 - Rich, KE3Q
See: http://www.mscomputer.com for "Self Supporting Towers", "Wireless Weather
Stations", and lot's more. Call Toll Free, 1-800-333-9041 with any questions
and ask for Sherman, W2FLA.
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