Date: Sat, 14 Aug 2010 01:44:13 -0700
From: David Gilbert <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Fall Harness-My Choice
My hesitation in buying the safety cable was simply that I didn't want
to trust my life to a spring gripping system I suspected I wouldn't be
able to see (I've never seen one in person so I wasn't certain how
enclosed the mechanism was).
## rohn also has them. There is no spring mechanism if u fall.
The system uses a cam/pall shaped device... that always rides/slides
on the cable. When u try and slide it down the cable, it instantly bites into
## If u ever see a pix of one [ it in the old rohn catalogs] u will see
instantly how it works.
If u see one attached to the bottom of a tower... you can grab it..and it
freely slides UP the cable..
to any where u want. let go.. and it stays put. The cam/pall is an offset
chunk of steel..with the weight
towards ur body. The other end/shorter end... bears on the cable. the thing
can only freely slide one way
...UP. The spring mechanism is a hand operated deal.. that temp releases the
cam/pall from the cable,
so u can freely slide it down a bit..when climbing down. If u fell while
climbing down.. and let go of the
device.. it instantly grabs the cable again.
## best thing to do is to see if u can see a pix of one... then u will see
right away that's it
fail safe. You still need ur hooks though. Once u get to top of tower..or
at what ever
level u want to work at.... say 180 deg opposite the safety cable, you need
to h1st hook on
with ur gorrilla hooks,, THEN do a total rld on the safety device... and
detach urself from it.
It detaches from the safety cable... and stays with you. Then you are free
to do whatever.
## when done... u re-attach back to safety cable, undo gorilla hooks... then
proceed up/down the
tower. All our cell sites, micowave sites are rigged with them. If not, we
are not allowed to climb em.
Same deal witrh water tower's etc. At least that's in the real world, where
fall arrest systems are mandatory for commercial stuff. Hams are free to do
as they please.
Where problems can occur is when Joe ham decides to employ professional
help/contractor's... and the
1st thing they see is 'No fall arrest system in place'..... then it's
bye-bye. It either gets installed.. or they
won't work on your tower with out it. If it's not in place... they are not
covered by either workman's
compensation.... or if they are killed.. their life insurance may well be null
## You may want to check ur own health / life insurance plan. Never thought
of this b4.... but if they
knew joe ham owned, and climbed his own tower, that was NOT equipped with a
fall arrest device installed,
there could be repercussions after the fact.
## the only time they go up a tower with out a fall arrest system in place
is... when they go to install
a new one... either on a new tower install.... or on an existing ham tower
that never had one from day one.
## They are relatively cheap insurance. The cost of the 3/8" winch cable
for a 70' tower is really chump
change. My concern would be getting nailed in the eye by one of those 10"
long climbing pegs. They
are usually every 12", alternating sides on the same tower leg. The kicker
is.. there is a 60 deg angle
between the pegs. It's not like climbing a regular peg ladder... nor an
extension ladder. You never
have 2 feet side by side on a peg ladder.. same deal with ur two hands] One
is always up.. and one is
At least with the gorilla hooks, I can see
that they are closed and that the safety latch has been been locked in
place each time.
The gorilla hooks release and open all in the same hand gripping motion,
so it is not appreciably slower than simply climbing or descending.
## agreed... until u pass out, or get nailed in the head from above. Don't
One of my buddies at work was on loan to the ant crew for a few months, with a
few new cell tower/ant installs. It was a 240' tower..and he was at the 120'
[they were installing heliax onto hangers]. The boss was up at the 240'
something went wrong..and he dropped one of those heavy chain ratchet hoists
made by Yale and Town..[sorta like a cum-a long on steroids..uses chain instead
cable]. My buddy felt something whiz past his left ear, nicking his ear lobe
If he had not been leaning over on a bit of an angle.. or was over by 1" more...
he would have got nailed in the shoulder or head. I believe after that
you could not have personel directly above one another..and both climing
at the same time. One would have to go up/down 1st... until they were at least
into position. In a lot of cases, step pegs were installed on 2 x
all 3 x legs. ..[with a safety cable on each one] .
## The only mishap I ever had..was dropping a jigsaw, with a metal cutting
blade in it...
for some silly rusted bolts at top of my 1st tower. It was not tied off,
and I dropped it..it fell
75' and hit the garage roof... and bounced 25' sideways back into the
air..and just missed a grnd
worker. Be careful with 120 vac power tools up a tower... esp when it starts
to rain. There is a
100 things that can go wrong up any tower.... like leaving U bolts and tools
rotor/bearing plates... and using em as a shelf... then forgetting abt em...
until the wind /vibration
finally nudges em over the edge. 1/2" bolts can hit the grnd pretty hard.
Then we have the
folks who paint towers orange and white [ repaint em]. They can tell you some
usually wait.... til they are retired. Every Telco/cell co has a 'safety
Sam' whose job it is to investigate
incidents like these...if he hears abt it.
Later... Jim VE7RF
In addition, I can use the two hooks and safety straps to climb around
the tower and suspend myself wherever I might need to work so that both
hands are free. That wouldn't be as workable with the safety cable
unless I brought along extra straps anyway.
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