>I am ready to start the project of restoring an old Hy Gain HyTower.
Go with the best zinc-rich "cold galvanizing" coating you can lay your hands on.
For starters see:
NOTE!!! You can NOT "re-galvanize" the Hy-Tower: it is made from HBX sections
that are held together by aluminum rivets. The first dip into the hot tank
will destroy the rivets, drop all the section pieces to the bottom of the tank
where they have to be "fished" out by hand and, worst case, possibly
contaminate the zinc if they are dumb enough to try to dip a section in the
ALL parts of the sections MUST be squeaky clean, bone-dry and completely free
of rust, grease and oil prior to applying the coating. How you do it is up to
your abilities and pocketbook. Beading and dipping in a solvent degreasing
bath is the "industrial" way. You will probably wind up with a wire brush
(bronze - NOT steel which will leave nasty pieces in places you won't be able
to get at and be THE spot where rust strikes again), sandpaper and elbow grease
followed by appropriate pre-paint solvents, bunches of rags and even more elbow
This is NOT a winter job unless you happen to have a heated garage big enough
to hold the tower part.
After applying the zinc coating, a second coat should be applied to vill voids,
pinholes and places you missed the first time. Adequate time (per the
manufacturer's instructions) should be allowed between coats.
After the second coat has been applies, and is completely dry, a "sealer"
should be applied to protect the zinc coating and further prevent moisture from
reaching the underlying steel.
The manufacturer of the coating should specify initial surface preparation,
application and re-application steps which should be followed.
Also note that this all goes to hell in a handbasket the first time you crank
down a bolt, nut or lockwasher on the coated surface so be prepared to re-seal
or re-coat if you assemble after coating.
I'd also strongly recommend replacement of ALL hardware with NEW stainless
http://www.nutty.com/ seem to be the "good guys" in the business.
Does all this work? I know of a 30+ year old tower that has only rusted where
the paint was chipped AND the galvanizing scratched. Yes - it IS painted with
lead-based paint and if I could lay my hands on more I wouldn't hesitate one
single second to use it.
Good luck! Someday I might get round to the Hy Tower I have out back,
Bill - WB1GOT
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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