Michael Ryan wrote:
> I can't imagine anyone using PIPE for a serious antenna installation on a
> tower, unless that antenna would be mounted 6" or so above the top of that
> tower. Any serious bending movement will potentially reduce that mast to a
> pretzel. Julio was correct in this assessment in an earlier email. Another
> earlier email indicated that real "masts" are available from Texas Towers.
> Pricey, yes. But without the real deal, you are potentially introducing a
> real weak link to your system. Having a real GALVANIZED steel mast on a
> tower to me is no less important than having rotor cable running to the
> rotor. Pipe is for routing water. - Mike
Hmm... pipe is used all the time as a structural material. It holds up
a good fraction of the apartment buildings in the Los Angeles area which
have the parking under the apartments (e.g. the "dingbat style"
yes, the pipe is made of a material which has a low yield strength, but
in a large diameter tube, it's still pretty strong.
It's all a matter of engineering. You can successfully put up a huge
antenna system on a tower made of grass (bamboo).
You need to analyze your needs.. you might want a really strong mast
that is "install and forget", or, maybe, you'll save the money, let the
thing bend over in a strong wind occasionally, and replace it when it
does. Someone who is always changing antennas might actually be better
off with the inexpensive pipe. The money you save on the mast pays for
the crane/bucket truck rental. ($300 vs $60)
However, if you want to just use the "build it wicked strong" approach
and not give it a lot of thought, buying a big strong mast is probably a
decent cookbook plan. You can then spend your time thinking about
making Qs or scrounging coax or orienting your plastic owl. Some people
take great pleasure in the mechanical design aspects, other just want to
get the aluminum in the air so they can do something else. both
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