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Re: [TowerTalk] Lightning

To: "Doug Renwick" <>,,
Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Lightning
From: "Marlon K. Schafer" <>
Date: Tue, 9 Jan 2007 21:48:20 -0800
List-post: <>
I have a WISP customer that has gear on top of a mid west located grain elevator. They told me that they lost a LOT of gear up there due to lightning.

After they had a company come in and put up a series of lightning rods and grounded the heck out of them the damage stopped happening. Something about it bleeding off the energy before a strike actually happens.

I've not tried that anywhere here but they swore it worked. Makes sense to me in a way. Has anyone talked to the folks at Polyphaser? They have some really great white papers etc. on the subject.


----- Original Message ----- From: "Doug Renwick" <>
To: <>; <>
Sent: Friday, January 05, 2007 5:30 PM
Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Lightning

So far nobody, NOBODY, has presented sound empirical data
that proves the porcupine does or does not reduce the
incidence of lightning strikes.  Without that data, you are
nothing more than an opinion.
At the bottom read the post from WD4K.


Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Lightning

They also sold a couple to the FAA for testing. I have a
video tape of the device exploding and spreading shrapnel
everywhere as it took a direct strike.

Gary  K4FMX

Several years ago, maybe more than five, I went to the
Polyphaser lecture in Dayton. It was very good including
good projected diagrams and a great lecture. The layout they
proposed was fantastic..trench after trench incasing a
mountain of copper, wagon wheels of copper around the tower
and house etc. The design was very impressive...and then
after all of the reasons for such detail....THE PRESENTER
that. I why bother with these extremes if even
the best of the best offers marginal  protection at best.

And yes, I have been here and done this before: After
dealing with the tornado disaster here in '97-- 168K damage
to my home, antennas gone and equipment ruined..and dealing
my insurance vendors and settlement procedures on all of
that...I decided to pretty much do as little as I have to:
ground rods, ice suppressors on my coaxes and rotors, tower
grounds etc. and not obsess about it.  I took out a separate
policy on just the tower against any type of damage and my
homeowners covers the rest. I would guess the Polyphaser
setup would cost $20K or so if done properly...Not saying
that is a bad thing but it is a bad bet for dollars invested
for me personally. I would much rather pay my homeowners
insurance and the other dedicated policy and not worry about
it. If I get whacked..I am paying in advance for that
possibility.  Since, to paraphrase the Polyphaser
guy...regardless of all of our time, money and efforts we
are still subject to and cannot defeat the upper hand of
mother nature.  Just another way of looking at it. Tommy

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